AREA NEWS DIGEST
Taken from the news columns of area newspapers.
Grand Generation Center is 30 years old
COZAD—The Cozad Grand Generation Center celebrated its 30th anniversary on July 26 with a prime rib dinner and program attended by 138 guests. A silent auction and a tractor art raffle were a part of the festivities which raised over $1,000. Gothenburg’s Matt Williams was the featured speaker and Joan Wells of Lincoln amazed the crowd with her multiple rope tricks.—reported in the Tri-City Trib.
Culprit arrested in Bow Catholic church fire
BROKEN BOW—Several beer bottles, beer caps and matches left in the St. Joseph’s Catholic Church led the Broken Bow Police Department to Matthew Grubtill, 23, of Broken Bow, after the state fire marshal ruled a recent fire in the church as arson. Fire and rescue officials had responded to reports of smoke bellowing out of the front of the church on July 26 and Merna was called as mutual aid with Ansley put on standby. The fire was found confined to a closet and was quickly extinguished. Grubtill was later arrested at his residence and charged with 2nd degree arson and criminal mischief with a preliminary hearing set for Aug. 25.—reported in the Custer County Chief.
Kites and Castles event marks 25th anniversary
OGALLALA—After winning the people’s choice award last year, longtime competitors the Haack and Baack families took home the open class trophy during the silver anniversary of Kites and Castles on Sandy Beach at Lake McConaughy. Their sand castle entry resembled an intricate fish titled, “The One That Looks Like a Fish.” A total of 35 teams entered the sculpting portion of the competition, which was nine more than the previous year. Kites and Castles officials estimated 4,000 people viewed the sand sculptures during its 25th year.—reported in the Keith County News.
Once silent bell rings again over Stockville
CURTIS—In the spring of this year, an old sisal rope which pulls the bell of the First Congregational Church at Stockville fell to the floor and the bell sat silent. Two young men, Brandon and Devon Crawford returned to their hometown recently and heard of the incident. They shimmied up a ladder only to find the door to the belfry had been sided over. These dedicated men got on their hands and knees, with one on another’s back, to reach the crawl space through the slats, and once inside, found the bell in perfect condition. The wooden trolley where the rope had swung the bell for the last 109 years was worn away. A new rope was installed and adjustments made to the trolley. The bell sent its deep resonant tone over the town once again. The population of 29 are grateful to the young men and their dedication.—reported in the Frontier County Enterprise.
SHGP students tackle summer projects
ARNOLD—The summer employees of Arnold’s graphic sign company, School House Graphic Products (SHGP), haven’t had much spare time over their summer. The students are completing a plethora of jobs from assembling thousands of trophies to installing direction signs way up in the Sandhills. The student-ran graphic sign making business began operating year-round in 2008 when summer employment was offered. The students are also creating and erecting signs and plaques—hundreds in fact—for towns and counties. One of the larger projects is 911 directional signs for 70 intersections in Cherry County.—reported in the Arnold Sentinel.
Playing in the mud and muck for a good cause
CALLAWAY—The growl of high-performance engines and the sight of flying mud dominated the annual Custer County Mud Drags east of Rose Hill Cemetery recently, sponsored by Callaway Fire and Rescue as a fund raiser event. Those too young to race a pickup or SUV participated in muddy foot races for prizes. Scott Boncynski of St. Paul left everyone in the muck with his high-performance racing machine in the open class, and Dan Trumbull of Callaway dominated the super stock division.—reported in the Callaway Courier.