Reason For the Season:

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Tis The Season:

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Gothenburg Native Nordin Publishes First Poetry Musings

Nebraska author and poet as well as Gothenburg native, Matthew E. Nordin, is publishing his first poetry collection entitled Musings of the Northern Poet this December.
Musing of the Northern Poet, Matthew Nordin said, is influenced by his love of God, his wife, and the Renaissance festivals.  This collection of syllabic poetry will enlighten the reader through its couplets and verse. From his best poems written while attending Bible college, to his lighter works from his involvement at local Ren Faires, these poems seek to inspire and reach the frontiers of the mind’s emotions. Split into three sections, it is the author’s desire to have others experience his life's passions: faith, hope, and love.
Matthew Nordin is a speculative fiction writer, poet, and a midwestern traveler. He became a sci-fi and fantasy enthusiast during his years attending a one-room, country school near his childhood home of Gothenburg, Nebraska. 
As an avid reader of poetry, Matthew found himself creating over one hundred poems throughout  his days at Gothenburg High School.  
After high school, he earned a double Bachelor's of Science in Christian Education and Biblical Studies from Grace University in Omaha. 
He met his wife, Lisa, while performing at a Renaissance Festival with Evengard Improv, a theater troupe he co-founded and now leads. They have enjoyed performing in hundreds of shows at some of the most unique locations.
This first poetry collection is being published through Dot’s Consultant, Management, & Micro-Publishing House and is currently available for sale on-line, through social media, or through direct contact with Matthew Nordin. 

Vandalism Reported At Haymaker Stadium

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BARGING THROUGH a locked gate were suspects most likely driving a pickup late Monday evening or early Tuesday morning along with vandalizing area near the gate at Haymaker Stadium. The Cozad Police Department is investigating the event and if you can provide any assistance, you are encouraged to call 784-2366 or Dawson County Crimestoppers at 1-866-652-7383. You may remain anonymous as well.

TRIBUNE-Area Ready To Light Up Night With Christmas Celebrations

Getting in the mood for the Holiday season are the TRIBUNE-Area cities with plans to showcase Christmas festivities. 
Cozad will host their annual Winter Wonderland Parade on Monday, December 5th. The parade will begin at 6:30 p.m.  You will also be able to visit Santa following the parade at JM’s Gifts/Service Drug. 
The 100th Meridian City will also host a Window Decorating contest. To enter the contest, please send information to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by the end of the business day on November 30th. 
The community of Lexington will host their 13th Annual Lighted Christmas Parade through downtown Lexington on Sunday, December 4th. 
Lexington will also have Santa’s House open in downtown Lexington on Saturday December 3rd. 
Downtown Gothenburg will have an extra glow on Dec. 6 as businesses are encouraged to light up their store fronts with holiday spirit for the Magic on Main Street celebration 5-8 pm that Tuesday.
The event kicks off theChristmas season with a light parade that will escort Santa into town for his first appearance of the year at Gothenburg State Bank. Everyone is welcome to join the light parade beginning at 5 p.m. The parade will line up at the Gothenburg Volunteer Fire Department at 10th Street and Avenue F.  The route will go from the fire hall to Ehmen Park and south on Lake Avenue to Ninth Street, where firemen will deliver Santa. Floats and vehicles in the parade must have lights on them, and because the fire department will be bringing Santa through the parade, others are asked not to include Santa look-alikes.
Santa will visit with children and have photos taken at Gothenburg State Bank until 7 p.m.
There will be street performances by students at The Dance Centre and Gymnastics West, as well as holiday music played by an ensemble of the Gothenburg High School band. Vendors will be set up downtown selling a variety of food and gift items in addition to some downtown businesses being open late.
The Lions Club is planning a free pancake supper in the old RTI building in the 800 block of Lake Avenue and Rotary will serve hot dogs, hot chocolate and coffee in the 900 block of Lake Avenue. 
Free fire truck rides and hayrack rides will be available as well as face painting and games.
Magic on Main Street participants will be able to rate their favorite store front as businesses vie for bragging rights for the best decorated windows.
Gothenburg residents can also boost community spirit with a chance to win a little extra Christmas cash by getting their holiday decorations up prior to Dec. 6. The Gothenburg Chamber of Commerce office will accept nominations for the best decorated home in Gothenburg. The winner will receive $50 in Swede Bucks.
Nominations will be taken Dec. 7-9 only. To nominate a residence, call the Chamber at 537-3505 or email the address to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. 
For more information about Magic on Main Street, contact the Gothenburg Chamber Office.

Holiday Spirit Toy Drive

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LPN Pled No Contest In Prescription Drug Case

A former employee at the Golden Living Center in Cozad, Katie O’Keefe of Gothenburg pled no contest to three misdemeanor charges of attempted possession of a controlled substance by fraud. The sentence of 18 months probation was handed down on Monday in Dawson County District Court. 
O’Keefe was formerly employed as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) at the Golden Living Center. Reports indicated that in Auguest of 2015 she withdrew Hydrocodone pills numerous times meant for a patient. Some of them were administered to the patient and some of them weren’t given to the patient. 

Berreckman Spotlighted As Soloist At All-State Music Event

 
Screen_Shot_2016-12-01_at_11.40.47_AM.pngEach year approximately 3000 of the best high school musicians in the state audition for the Nebraska All-State Band, Chorus, Jazz Band and Orchestra which are sponsored by the Nebraska Music Educators Association (NMEA). Selection as a member of one of these groups is one of the highest music honors attainable in Nebraska. 
Ms. Linda Johnson, Chair of Choral Affairs for the NMEA is pleased to announce that Cozad Junior Kennedy Berreckman, the daughter of Claude Jr and Karen Berreckman was among the 440 students selected to be a part of the All-State Chorus. Kennedy was also a soloist in the final concert after an audition as a result of being the #1 ranked in our region. 
Guest Conductor for the group was Richard Bjella, Director of Choral Studies at Texas Tech University  and Artistic Director of the San Antonio Chamber Choir. The chorus rehearsed Wednesday, November 16th through Friday, November 18th on the Univer-  sity of Nebraska-Lincoln campus. The Concert was held of Friday, November 18th at the Lied Center for the Performing Arts on the University of Nebraska- Lincoln campus. 

Veteran's Day Honored Speakers:

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Break A Leg:

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Just Around The Corner

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Cozad Jaycees Holiday Shoppe December 3rd

The Cozad Jaycees will be hosting their annual Holiday Shoppe on Saturday, December 3rd, 2016 from 1:00-3:00 p.m. at the Cozad Grand Generation Center.
Children must be registerd to be able to shop. Children from 4 years old - 5th grade may register to shop for parents and siblings up to six people and sign up a shopping time slop from 5:00 -7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 22nd at the Wilson Public Library.
Parents/guardinas may bring their child(ren) at their designated time slot on December 3rd and a personal shopper will escrot them around the ‘store.’ 
Gifts will be wrapped and sent home with the child(ren) that day.
Questions may be directed to Stacy Munster at tsmunster@ yahoo.com or by calling (308) 325-6852 or to Kiley Goff at kiley357@ gmail.com or by calling (308) 672-5148.

Dawson County Commissioners Discuss The Fate Of Old Jail During Tuesday’s Meeting

The Dawson County Board of Commissioners met for a meeting on Tuesday.
Jocelyn Brasher, a native of Omaha and recent graduate of Creighton University was introduced as the new Deputy County Attorney who will be attending meetings.
Under Committee Reports, Chairman Butch Hagan reported that he had attended the Ag Society annual meeting on Monday night. “The meeting had a great turnout and the society retained its current officers for the upcoming year,” he noted.
Dawson County Sheriff Reiber presented the October crime reports.
“Scottsbluff has converted their juvenile detention facility into more beds for adult prisoners,” Reiber reported. “Norfolk and Sarpy County are opening new juvenile facilities, but this will be further to transport juvenile offenders,” he continued.
Discussion, prompted by Commissioner PJ Jacobson and Bill Stewart was held concerning the demolition of the old jail. The building belongs to the Sheriff’s Office.
“We would like to see dates and bids for demolition secured with that space becoming available for parking,” said Jacobson. “Each county department is in charge of going through their items in storage and deciding whether it needs to be kept, shredded or disposed of,” Jacobson added.
Healing Heart Division Supervisor Miranda Stoll and her assistant, Jessica Brown appeared to obtain the signature on the annual ‘memorandum of understanding’.
“Since June, 63 juveniles have been served by the agency with seven being discharge and several others ready to be discharged,” according to Stoll. “We hold them accountable for their actions and they can only be enrolled once on the same charge. The second times they are released to a juvenile detention facility,” she explained.
Healing Heart provides drug and alcohol counseling, peer interaction and pairs up with community colleges to prepare clients for job interview and job skills,” Stoll continued. “We work with schools and parents to encourage and promote success for them,” she added.
Stoll and Brown volunteered their clients to help with the removal of items from the old jail, which was readily accepted by the commissioners.
Certification of the county’s road certification was approved. This certification provides for the county to receive some money back from the state.
A public hearing on vacating Road 410 between Road 754 and 755 was held at 8:30 a.m. Scott Russman appeared and shared that vacating the road would stop the county’s maintenance costs on the road.
“At the present time this road is used as a dumping ground and sightseeing,” Russman said. “The owners of Hi-Gain that is located nearby and all of the neighbors have signed a petition to vacate the road,” Russman continued. The commissioners approved the proposal.
Commissioner Jacobson led discussion on the search for a full time highway superintendent. “We’ve been kicking this around for a long time. This is a position we really need so we need to step up the search and be more aggressive,” Jacobson expressed.
Jacobson and Chairman Hagan will be attending a meeting later this month in Kearney where highway superintendents from across the state will be in attendance and will try to gather ‘Intel’ on where to seek a full time highway superintendent for the county. If that search ends in futility, the board authorized the hiring of a search firm to seek candidates for the position.
The final agenda item for the meeting was a presentation by Rev. Chuck Olsen, Dr. Bruce Hanson, Bob Cummins and Jim Hain representing the Johnson Lake Trails Planning Team.
They and several other members of the planning team as well as visitors from Lakeview Acres had met with Johnson Lake Chamber President Kevin Kunnemann and Tim Boyle from the Game and Parks Commission on November 1, 2016.
At that meeting they reviewed the Johnson Lake Drive as a long standing public recreation corridor currently designated by the NE State Roads Department as a ‘Recreational Road’ that has been used for over 40 years as a popular bike route. With the advent of 7.5 miles of off road trails it has become increasingly more popular and used, and concerns over the “share the road” situation on the 1.2 miles of Johnson Lake Drive in the Lakeview Acres area has become a dangerous recreational environment with danger to public health.
Olsen and his team explained the proposal for a 5-foot bike lane on the inside edge of the paved road with an estimate of $100,000 to fund the project.  The 5-foot lane would be asphalt six inches thick from Dr. 14F to the Marina Drive. The team had visited with David Schoenmaker, Bicycle Pedestrian Coordinator for the NE Department of Roads and had perused the optional construction segment with Jim Jewell from Paulsen Inc.
Olsen and Hanson expressed that there are funding sources available through recreation or public safety funds, but that these requests for grants and other funding need to be made by the Board of Commissioners.
All five commissioners expressed their opinions on the proposal but felt that the county had already contributed to the initial trail with a $60,000.00 grant for funding. 
Planning Team members noted that 20 percent of the bike trail users are local residents, 20 percent from Dawson County and 60 percent use the trail as a destination on their vacations, which brings in tourist revenue to the county.
After continued amicable discussion, the commissioners agreed that they would rather see an 8-foot separated off road concrete trail built outside of right-of-way as close as possible to the outside edge of the county road with no county maintenance provided. Projected cost of this proposal would be $250,000, and Hanson reported that they were going to receive $100,000 in funding from the recent ‘Give BIG Lexington’ campaign and agreed to pursue this option.

Rustic & Red Opens Its Doors For Business

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DREAMS BECAME REALITY as Tammy Paulsen and Cathy Pflaster opened the doors to the Rustic & Red business on Friday with large crowds checking out the new business that is an extensive expansion of the former Drive-In Video business. The craftsmanship and the use of rustic materials for the new businesses building is elaborate and elegant. A must-see for patrons. 

Details Of Community Garden Discussed At School Board Meeting

The Cozad Community Schools Board of Education met for a regular meeting on Monday, November 14, 2016. 
Prior to the meeting an audit report via teleconference call took place with Marcy Luth of Almquist, Maltzahn, Galloway & Luth. The audit report was approved for the fiscal year ending August 31, 2016, as was a response letter for the Nebraska Department of Education.
The board acknowledged the resignation of Darrel Francescato as Head Volleyball Coach, effective immediately and the resignation of Denise Halouska, CEEC Para-professional effective December 23, 2016.
Board members approved the transfer from General Fund to Activity Accounts in the amount of $6500 distributed to the following accounts: Speech, $4000; One Acts, $2000 and National Honor Society, $500.
The Board approved the revision to the funding of students who qualify for National Competitions such as FCCLA and FBLA. The students do raise most of the costs through fundraising and the Cozad Schools Foundation.
Also approved were revisions to the policies concerning the Board Member Code of Ethics and Vacancies.
Discussion continued on the CCS 403(b) plan document with a follow-up from last month’s decision to move forward with Marcy Luth’s recommendation to amend the document to allow in-service contributions for employees prior to age 59 ½ and also to add the option to convert traditional 403(b) investments to Roth 403(b) investments.
Discussion also took place concerning the Restitution Civil Suit Update. The school recently received notice that the inactivity of the case had actually surpassed the five-year limit. An order has been filed to ‘revive’ the case, which resulted in a notice being sent out allowing the person involved 30 days to respond to the order. After this timeline, the execution and garnishment will be filed.
Cozad resident Bill Clark appeared with additional information concerning his proposed community garden on school property east of the high school football field. 
“I have visited with the accountants at France & McNally in Cozad and it won’t cost the school one cent as the garden will be funded entirely by grants,” Clark reported.
Clark had met with Cozad City Water Commissioner Dallas Nichols concerning the water, and a new water line cannot be installed on the property. 
Clark is seeking help from the Cozad Development Corporation and the Cozad Development Foundation and noted that Marcia Fritz has agreed to serve on the governing board.
“All gardeners will be required to sign two papers,” Clark continued. “One is a release from harm that will cover liability issues that might arise. The other is a document signing the rules of conduct that will include such items as children needing to be supervised and not taking vegetables from another plot,” he explained. 
Superintendent Joel Applegate reported that the legalities have been taken care of for the proposal and that the school would retain control of the property.
Superintendent Applegate reported to the board on his discussion with Ed Kucirek concerning the HVAC at the high school. Two bids for boilers and ventilation systems out of locker rooms are being sought and it is hoped that the work will begin as soon as the students vacate the building at the end of the second semester.
The board entered into a closed meeting for the purpose of discussing negotiations for 2017-2018 at 12:52 p.m. and adjourned at 1:15 p.m.
The next regular meeting is scheduled for Monday, December 19, 2016 at 7:00 p.m.

Gothenburg Health To Add YMCA Facility

A new era of building a stronger, healthier community begins January 2017 with the kickoff of the YMCA coming to Gothenburg! Gothenburg will become the 18th Nebraska city to benefit from a YMCA operating out of their community.
“We are thrilled for the opportunity to partner with Gothenburg by adding them to our association which includes Holdrege and Lexington,” said YMCA of the Prairie CEO, Ginger Cowne. “This is a remarkable occasion to multiply the tremendous work done on The Center project.”
The Center is a collaborative community project that has been a focus of multiple entities in Gothenburg since early 2015. The goal is to build a public hub on Gothenburg Health’s campus that fuses health, wellness, nutrition, education, community and recreation. The YMCA is a natural partner for this great endeavor. 
The YMCA will utilize shared spaces in Gothenburg including those operated by the city, school and hospital to conduct programming. Upon completion, the YMCA will permanently operate out of the planned Center facility. Due to this great collaboration, The Center project will become the YMCA of Gothenburg.
Groundbreaking for the $4.95 million project is scheduled for February 2017. The YMCA will be connected to Gothenburg Health as part of a joint project featuring a hospital renovation.  The YMCA will begin operating out of the existing hospital wellness center. Programming is planned to kickoff in spring of 2017.
The YMCA of Gothenburg will have year-round recreation opportunities for all ages and socio-economic backgrounds. When complete, the facility will include a high school regulation size gymnasium with two cross-courts; a four-lane swimming pool with space for kids play and physical therapy; an indoor walking track; a wellness center with weights and cardio machines; a spacious group exercise room; men’s, women’s and family locker rooms; a fun and educational child watch room, and a comfortable social lobby with free Wi-Fi access. In addition to all these planned components, there will be an abundance of educational space which include the potential for mentorship programs, early childhood development, after-school programs and career development opportunities for students; depending on community wants and needs.
The YMCA at Gothenburg Health project has been partially funded by a significant local capital campaign directed by the Gothenburg Health Foundation, raising $2,265,000 through local donations. A remaining $2,685,000 is needed to complete fundraising for the community project.  The Sherwood Foundation of Omaha has recently awarded a 2:1 challenge grant for the community wellness facility. For every $2 raised for the facility, the Sherwood Foundation will contribute $1, up to $895,000. The challenge will end on December 31, 2017. All past and future capital campaign funds raised will stay in Gothenburg and will be solely used to build the facility in Gothenburg as originally planned. 
The YMCA is a non-profit organization focusing on strengthening the community through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. For more information on this great partnership, please contact Becky Jobman at (308) 537-4094.
 

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