There are 100 days of summer and the American Red Cross urges eligible donors to choose their day to give blood and help ensure a sufficient blood supply. Summer is a difficult time to collect enough blood to meet patient needs. Nearly 90 percent of donors surveyed this past spring said they planned to take a vacation this summer, potentially making them less available to give. In addition, many schools that host blood drives are out of session during the summer. But the need for blood donations is constant. Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. Donors of all blood types – especially those with types O negative, A negative and B negative – are needed. The Red Cross must collect 15,000 blood donations every day to meet the needs of patients at approximately 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide. Please join the American Red Cross Blood drive in Bertrand Tuesday, June 13th from 12-6 p.m. at the Bertrand Community Building. Walk-ins are always welcome and needed. Call Darlene Samuelson at 308-472-3466 to make an appointment.
The Bertrand Agricultural Society will sponsor ‘Ladies Night Out’ Friday, June 2nd from 5-9 p.m. in downtown Bertrand. There will be over 16 vendors, three local businesses will have extended hours and one merchant will be serving food. Downtown stores with extended hours for the day will include Divine Boutique, Pretty & Fabulous, and Countryside Market. Vendors will include: Legging Army, Rodan & Fields, Pampered Chef, Initials, Inc, Jamberry, Hayward Gourmet Popcorn, LulaRoe, Scentsy, Ron’s Funky Beads, Young Living Essential Oils, Tastefully Simple, UsBorne Books, LipSense, Perfectly Posh, 31 Bags, Pink Zebra and many more! Countryside Market will serve food. If there should be inclement weather the event will be moved to the Bertrand Community Building.
May 22nd- 23rd saw eight members of the 2017-2018 Holdrege FFA Officer Team attending the Chapter Officer Leadership Training Conference (COLT) at The Nebraska Youth Leadership Center in Aurora. The theme for COLT was “Soar With Your Superpower”. COLT enabled all of the eight officers to spend time learning about their specific chapter officer position and developing ideas that can be used by the Holdrege FFA Chapter for the upcoming year. The newly elected Nebraska State FFA Officers conducted COLT and led most of the workshops, skits, and officer development sessions. Victoria Harris, National FFA Secretary, from Florida and Trey Elizondo, the Western Region National Vice President from Texas, spoke during the sessions and awards banquet. Each officer worked with over 30 different FFA Chapter Officers from across the state in developing knowledge in personal strengths, using team members’ strengths, community service connections, goal setting, and developing the Chapter Program of Activities. The Holdrege officer team also spent time making plans for the upcoming school year and developing ideas to involve all chapter members of the Holdrege FFA Chapter. The chapter competed in the opening ceremonies competition and finished their division in third place. The members who attended COLT were: President; Malina Lindstrom, Vice President; Grady Johnson, Secretary; Morgan Marquardt, Treasurer; Alex Wells, Reporter; Cassidy Connell, Sentinel; Spencer Knuth, Parliamentarian; Justine Johnson, and Historian, Amanda Taylor. The next major functions for the FFA Chapter include summer SAE visits, a chapter float in the Swedish Days Parade, two members attending Washington Leadership Conference, and the Phelps County Fair in July with the Community Watermelon Feed and Test Your Well event.
Members of Bertrand’s American Legion Carlson-Collister-Gulden Post 67 and Veterans of Foreign Wars Glen-Junkin-Freburg Post #5304 were busy Saturday, Sunday and Monday visiting local cemeteries to honor local deceased veterans for Memorial Day, 2017. On Saturday, May 27th, members of the veterans’ organizations and volunteers from the Bertrand Lions Club placed markers and flags at the graves of deceased veterans at cemeteries in the area. Sunday, May 28th, the color guard and firing squad conducted services at the Detenbeck Cemetery and at Union Cemetery. Also on Sunday, the color guard and firing squad from the Loomis American Legion Post 338 conducted services at Adullam Cemetery. Monday morning, May 29, offered beautiful weather for the annual community Memorial Day service, which was held at Bertrand High School’s east gymnasium. Linda Schmidt was on hand to greet guests and was in charge of selling poppies on behalf of the VFW Auxiliary. Over 125 people were in attendance at the service. There was a good turnout of Legion and VFW members as 15 were on hand. Veterans attending were Stuart Bachmann, Keith Daake, Tim Glendening, Greg Heiden, David High, Alfred Holscher, Paul Huggett, Lynn McPheron, Bryan Meyer, Gary Nuttelman, Allen Samuelson, Farrel Schmidt, Bruce Wallander, Charles Winheim and David Young. After the color guard advanced the colors, the crowd joined together in singing the National Anthem. Pastor Wes Hafner from St. Paul’s Lutheran Church offered the opening prayer. Jade Gonzalez, Bertrand’s representative to the Nebraska American Legion Auxiliary’s Cornhusker Girls State, gave a presentation dealing with the history and the wearing of poppies to honor our country’s deceased veterans. Pastor Hafner brought the message, and then Farrel Schmidt read the names of Phelps County veterans who have passed on during the past year. Schmidt called attention to the floral arrangement next to the podium, which was dedicated to the memory of Bertrand’s veterans who passed away during the last year. Those honored with the flowers were Dennis Franzen, Robert Hock, Harold Karschner, Omar “Pete” Nutzman Elvin E. Peterson, and Jack Wieland. American Legion representative David Young then presented an award for 60 years of continuous membership in the Legion to former Bertrand resident David High, who now lives in Kearney. Pastor Hafner offered the closing prayer before the gathering sang “God Bless America,” after which the colors were retired and the color guard and firing squad made their way to the local cemeteries. They first visited Highland Cemetery, then went to Hope Cemetery and concluded at Immanuel Cemetery. At each place, Greg Heiden laid a wreath to honor deceased servicemen and women, then raised the flags from half staff. At each place, a 21-gun salute was fired and Taps was played. Following the services at the cemeteries, about 70 people came to the Young At Heart Senior Center in Bertrand to enjoy a noon lunch sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary, whose ladies prepared and served the meal.
The Future Fund organization presented grants totaling $15,000 to five Phelps County community projects during business after hours on Thursday, May 18th at the Phelps County Community Foundation. Those receiving grants included Bertrand Community School $2,000; Fund School Community Center $2,000; Village of Loomis-Baseball/Softball $700; City of Holdrege-YEP Playground $6,900 and the Village of Bertrand $3,400. The Bertrand Community School requested a grant to help purchase a set of virtual reality equipment that includes VR headsets and cell phones. The equipment would be for all students in grades K-12 and could serve 260 students. The goal of the project will allow students the opportunity to explore the world beyond Phelps County without ever leaving the classroom. Fund School Community Center is going to update the bathrooms in the gym. They need some TLC. Approximately 1000 people use the facility in a year’s time and they would like to accommodate them with nice bathrooms. The Village of Loomis Baseball/softball Association is a volunteer driven organization that focuses on providing recreational opportunities in the Loomis community. In order to improve the safety of the Loomis baseball/softball complex the association would like to use the funds to install plastic fence over the caps around the perimeter of the two ball fields. The City of Holdrege has partnered with YEP and has requested a grant to help in the construction of an all-inclusive playground that will be located in North Park in Holdrege. An all-inclusive playground will give kids with special needs the ability to play freely and will give them the opportunity to play and interact with each other and their peers. The structure will be walker and wheelchair friendly, will adhere to ADA regulations and will be available to all kids to play on, not just those with special needs. The Village of Bertrand requested a grant to aid in the purchase of an underground sprinkler system at the baseball/softball fields in Bertrand. The underground sprinkler system will decrease the amount of labor and greatly enhance the baseball/softball programs.