PARENTS GET YOUR KIDS BAGS AND BASKETS READY FOR THE CHADRON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE ANNUAL EASTER EGG HUNT. THE EASTER EGG HUNT WILL TAKE PLACE AT THE BASEBALL AND SOCCER FIELDS ON NORTH MAIN STREET MARCH 26 WITH THE WHISTLE SOUNDING AT 11 AM . BRING YOUR CHILDREN OUT TO GATHER UPWARDS OF FOUR THOUSAND EGGS CONTAINING A VARIETY OF PRIZES, BOTH LARGE AND SMALL. EVERY CHILD GATHERING EGGS HAS THE CHANCE OF TAKING HOME A NEW BIKE! AFTER THE EGG GATHERING IS FINISHED FREE HOT DOGS WILL BE PROVIDED SPONSORED BY NORM’S NAPA AUTO PARTS. COME OUT AND ENJOY THE FUN.
CHADRON – Chadron State College students Kelsey and Leyna Brummels describe their close relationship as an “us-ship.” They complete each other’s sentences with ease and share characteristics of a deep and lasting friendship.
The sisters from Ewing, Nebraska, also have something new to share – both have been named the February Students of the Month by Project Strive/TRiO.
Jen Schaer, project director, said her staff felt the sisters deserved to share the honor for a number of reasons.
“Kelsey is a strong student and was a work-study for us in 2014-15. She produced the end-of-the-year video which took a lot of time and is not afraid to step up and do any task asked of her,” Schaer said. “Leyna is an excellent student and her personality makes you want to sit and talk to her for hours and hours. She helps out any Strive member and is willing to step up to the plate when asked.”
The Brummels were involved in National TRiO Day promotions and have attended speakers like Devin Hughes, co-sponsored on campus by Project Strive/TRiO. Kelsey also serves as a mentor for other Project Strive/TRiO students.
The sisters said they appreciate the welcoming atmosphere of the Project Strive/TRiO center in the lower level of the Library Learning Commons in the Reta King Library.
“They are there for you. They want the best for you. You just want to give them a hug,” Kelsey said.
Her sister agreed.
“Jen is amazing. I might ask her what seems like a stupid question and she always helps,” Leyna said. “She’s a great person to talk to about any problem I might have, and she always knows the right thing to say.”
Leyna, an accounting major, enrolled at CSC in 2013, and Kelsey came a year later to study marketing. They had visited the area on vacations with their parents and found they liked it, which factored into their decisions to attend.
Both have plans to volunteer with The Big Event, an annual day of CSC service in the community, and are active in Phi Beta Lambda (PBL). Leyna serves as PBL’s secretary and Kelsey is the Campus Activities Board (CAB) representative and social media contact. They each helped with PBL Week in February by posting photos of daily promotions to increase awareness about and membership in the club.
Kelsey said she appreciates the leadership development and networking opportunities provided through PBL.
Leyna said she likes the structured, fast-paced nature of the eight-week business classes.
“The hard deadlines are preparing us for careers in business,” she said. “Plus midterm time is like finals week for us so we can relax and celebrate over the break.”
The first-generation students feel like they learned a strong work ethic from their father who is a dairy owner and operator and their mother who is a para-educator.
“Our parents always both exemplified and encouraged us to work hard at anything and everything we do and to always show respect to everyone,” Kelsey said.
In addition to their own studies, two times in February the Brummels, with other PBL members, assisted Chadron High School students who were preparing for a state competition in Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA), the high school counterpart to PBL. They proofread papers written by the students and reviewed pre-tests.
“For five teenage boys, they had great manners, were very polite and a joy to work with,” Leyna said.
Future educational plans for the Brummels include sitting for the certified public accountant exam for Leyna and pursuing a master’s of business administration for Kelsey. Leyna may pursue a career at an accounting firm in the Norfolk, Nebraska, area, while Kelsey hopes to enter the college recruiting field or join a public relations staff for a sports team.
On March 23, a bill to provide a $250 tax credit to volunteer EMTs, rescue squad members, and firefighters, introduced by Senator Al Davis of Hyannis, cleared the first round of debate in the Nebraska Legislature.
The bill, which Senator Davis has designated as his personal priority bill, garnered 27 co-sponsors, including urban and rural senators. The bill advanced with no opposition.
Under the bill, the volunteer emergency responder must meet certain criteria before he or she can qualify for the $250 tax credit. This criteria is drawn directly from the Volunteer Emergency Responders Recruitment and Retention Act, which was passed into law in 1999. Volunteer emergency responders earn points under this criteria for participation in activities such as emergency response calls, training courses, participation in drills, and fire prevention education activities.
“In rural Nebraska, we rely heavily on our volunteers,” Senator Davis said. “Often, these brave men and women leave their homes, families, and jobs at a moment’s notice in order to keep their communities safe. This is just a minimum recognition of the work that they do.”
LB 886 will face two more rounds of debate before final passage.
GERING, Neb. (AP) – The second of two western Nebraska men accused of plying teenage girls with liquor to have sex with them has been acquitted of sexual assault.
Court records say 23-year-old Gage Soto, of Gering, was found not guilty Tuesday of sexual assault of an incompetent person but was convicted of eight counts of procuring alcohol for a minor. Soto’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for April 28.
Soto and Joseph Moore were arrested after a 17-year-old girl and a 16-year-old girl told police that they’d been assaulted in May after becoming intoxicated at a Gering party. Both men said the sex was consensual.
Last month the 23-year-old Moore also was acquitted of the assault charge and convicted of procuring alcohol.
DENVER (AP) – The Latest on the spring blizzard that hit the Plains and Midwest (all times local):
Severe weather including hail and at least one tornado have been reported in the Midwest as other areas dig out of a spring blizzard that shut down the Denver airport and closed hundreds of miles of roads.
Storms swept through northwest Arkansas late Wednesday, damaging or destroying several homes and severely injuring two people.
On Thursday, the National Weather Service confirmed a tornado touched down on the southeast side of Lake Charles in Louisiana, damaging a home.
Elsewhere, a hailstorm broke windows in northern Texas, and snow fell in Minnesota. Forecasters predicted another 1 to 4 inches of snow across most of Wisconsin on Thursday.
Denver International Airport reopened Wednesday evening, but by then most of the day’s flights had been canceled. Travelers trying to fly out Thursday faced long lines during the already busy spring break travel week.
Travelers trying to fly out of Denver are facing long lines a day after a spring blizzard shut down the airport.
The number of stranded travelers during an already busy spring break travel week made for long waits at airline check-in counters and security on Thursday.
The storm also brought heavy and blowing snow to parts of Wyoming, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. Up to a foot of snow fell in the southern Twin Cities.
It is still snowing in Michigan, where high winds prompted Mackinac Bridge officials to require that some bigger vehicles cross under escort.
The snow shut down long stretches of Interstates 25, 70 and 80 in Wyoming and Colorado on Wednesday but they are back open except for portions of I-70 in eastern Colorado.
Paul Reed Construction will be periodically closing side street intersection access off of and onto 3rd street for the next couple of weeks to allow their crews to remove trees and bore waterlines underneath of the highway. The Chadron residents and businesses will still have access from Second Street and 4th Steet. The closures should be opened up by the end of the each day.
SIDNEY, Neb. (AP) – A wintry storm that’s powered its way into Nebraska has forced the closure of several roadways, including Interstate 80 in western Nebraska.
Officials said Wednesday the interstate is closed from Brule in Keith County west about 117 miles to the Wyoming state line.
The Nebraska Department of Roads reports that westbound Interstate 80 is closed at Kearney extending to the Wyoming state line. Whiteout conditions have caused eastbound Interstate 80 lanes to close from just east of Sidney extending to Wyoming. Other roads in the area are closed as well.
Becky Buda is a clerk at the Sapp Bros Travel Center just off I-80 in Sidney, and she says the center’s parking is nearly full of trucks and other vehicles, as are parking lots for a nearby Wal-Mart and a Cabela’s outdoors gear store.
She estimates that 2 to 3 inches of snow has fallen and is being whipped by high winds. The National Weather Service says a dozen inches could fall by the time the storm and its 30-40 mph winds have moved out.
Camp Ashland NE. Civil Air Patrol (CAP) resources from across the state of Nebraska were involved in the search for a missing airplane near Alliance, NE earlier this week. Wreckage from the missing airplane was spotted by a local pilot and confirmed by CAP aircrews northeast of Alliance late Tuesday morning. Flight and communications personnel from Valentine, Chadron, Lincoln, and Omaha participated in the search.
According to search mission Incident Commander Maj. Thomas Pflug, the missing airplane had departed from Alliance at approximately 10:00AM MDT on Sunday morning. A family member of the pilot notified authorities later in the day when she was unable to reach the pilot. At noon on Monday, March 21, the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC) alerted CAP’s Nebraska Wing of the missing aircraft and requested CAP support in the search effort. A CAP air crew from Valentine was enroute to the search area within two hours of notification. The search continued on Tuesday, March 22, with aircrews and communications personnel from Chadron, Lincoln, and Omaha joining the effort.
Using information provided by the Civil Air Patrol Cellular Forensics Team, the crews focused their search efforts to the north and east of Alliance. While conducting grid searches of the area, a local pilot reported seeing what appeared to be wreckage approximately 30 northeast of Alliance. A CAP aircrew about to enter that grid was able to confirm the wreckage within two minutes of the original call. CAP aircraft remained on station in the area until local first responders were on site. All three CAP aircrews subsequently refueled at Alliance and returned to their respective home bases. Sadly, on scene first responders reported that the sole occupant of the airplane suffered fatal injuries.
The local pilot who first spotted the wreckage was Kem Sibbitt. He was flying as a good neighbor. His airplane is based at Grant County airport. According to the Sheridan County Attorney, “We do not have details on the cause of the plane accident nor the death of the pilot. An autopsy is being performed today and the FFA will perform their own investigation of the wreckage. It does appear to be the airplane and pilot that has been missing since Sunday.” The Sherdian County Attorney says they have not yet confirmed the pilot to be Ben Andrick of Alliance.
Col Darrell Nelson, Commander of the Nebraska Wing, Civil Air Patrol, extended condolences to the family of the deceased pilot.
Chadron State College will close at 10 a.m. Wednesday because of the snowstorm, CSC President Randy Rhine announced.
Rhine said the closure includes the cancellation of all classes, including those in the evening, all public facilities on campus, and previously scheduled Navy SEAL presentations. However, the Student Center will remain open, so students may access food services.
According to the National Weather Service, Chadron is in a winter storm warning until 6 p.m. Wednesdayevening. Total snow accumulation is expected to be four to nine inches and wind gusts as high as 45 mph. Travel is not advised and road conditions are expected to worsen throughout the day.
The college is scheduled to re-open Thursday at 7:30 a.m.