Friday, April 30, 2010

25th Annual Arbor Day Baby Celebration

The Exeter G.F.W.C. Arbor Day Celebration was held on Friday, April 30th. Each new baby in the last year from the original Exeter school district was honored at the event. Those present are pictured from the left in the front row, Tawnya Ostrand holding son Brayden, Becky Erdkamp holding son Deacon, Beth Crawford holding granddaughter Addison Ann Foutch (daughter of Clinton and Ashby Foutch). In the top row from the left are Sharlene Harre holding son Cohen, Liz Kallhoff holding son Wil and Rachel Vossler holding son Joel.

Superintendent Paul Sheffield had some help planting the tree at the school grounds. Assisting him are from the left Trenton Vossler, Aaron Ostrand, Mikey Bartu, Cohen Harre and his Mom, Sharlene.

Superintendent Paul Sheffield had some help planting the tree at the school grounds. Assisting him are Aaron Ostrand, far right and Mikey Bartu, middle.

Woman's Club Member Suzanne Johnson presents Rachel Vossler with flowers, a tree and other gifts in honor of her son, Joel's, birth. Standing beside Rachel is her oldest son, Trenton.

For 25 years the Exeter G.F.W.C. Woman's Club has welcomed all newborn babies to the Village of Exeter. This year, the 25th, since it's inception was a wonderful celebration with gifts, congratulations and tree plantings.

After a welcome from the Exeter club's co-president Bonnie Cudaback, member Bethine Leif introduced some of the special guests.

The babies were officially welcomed as members of the village community by Village Board member Margaret Petro. She read a proclamation that was signed by Village Board Chairman Alan Michl, recognizing Arbor Day in Exeter.

Next the Exeter-Milligan Superintendent Paul Sheffield reminded the families to watch for developmental progress in the babies and to contact the school with any questions in development or if they need assistance. He emphasized the fact that "our school is your school. I am a firm believer in starting early if you notice something is not quite right."
Finally, he welcomed all, "We look forward to adding all the little Timberwolves to our family."

Bethine Leif, who also served as the MC for the event, gave a brief history of the 25 years of the event. She explained how member Marilyn Manning thought of the idea 25 years ago and how it was implemented. Bethine also noted how many of the trees that were distributed have now grown very large and gave examples of some of the trees in the village that were Arbor Day trees.

Member Suzanne Johnson gave a brief history of Arbor Day in Nebraska and J. Sterling Morton. She explained how Arbor Day is one of the few holidays celebrated that "proposes toward the future."

Next on the program was Jill Schmidt of Fillmore County Good Beginnings who presented each family with a nursery rhyme book and a W.H.A.L.E. packet. The W.H.A.L.E. packets has stickers which when placed on a child's carseat help properly identify the child in the case of an accident.

The honored babies and their mothers were presented with a packet of flowers to be planted, an envelope of proclamations, a book, a tree and a personalized wood heart to be attached to the babies tree.

After posing for photos the group headed to the school grounds where a tree was planted with a small bottle containing the names of all of the babies and their parents.

The new babies in Exeter this year were:
Cohen William Harre, son of Justin and Sharlene Harre
Joel Frank Vossler, son of Wayne and Rachel Vossler
Deacon Jeffrey Erdkamp, son of Adam and Becky Erdkmap
Addison Ann Foutch, daughter of Clinton and Ashley Foutch
Wilfrid Daniel Kallhoff, son of Dan and Liz Kallhoff
Sydney Nicole Engert, daughter of Cory Engert and Brandi Nichols
Brayden Michael Ostrand, son of Steve and Tawnya Ostrand

Exeter American Legion Poppy Poster Contest

Junior Auxiliary members out to sell poppies are pictured from the left Ana Androyna, Deidre Stevens and Janey Due.

The William Sullivan American Legion Auxiliary Unit #218 invited the Exeter-Milligan Public School students from the Exeter campus to participate in creating Poppy posters to be judged and displayed in the city of Exeter. Sixteen posters were submitted by Kindergarteners and second grade students from Mrs. Kassik and Mrs. Weber's classes.

Receiving awards were


1st place: Katelyn Babula
2nd place: Ben Bartu

Second Grade:

1st place: Caitlin Murphy
2nd place: Kayla Geiger
3rd place: Anna Sluka

All students submitting posters will receive a chocolate bar and the students whose posters received placings will also be given monetary awards.

Be sure to look for the posters around town displayed during the month of May.

The poppy program is the oldest and most widely recognized Auxiliary program. Each year around Memorial Day, Auxiliary volunteers distribute millions of bright red crepe paper poppies in exchange for contributions to assist disabled and hospitalized veterans. The program provides multiple benefits to the veterans and to the community. The hospitalized veterans who make the flowers are able to earn a small wage which helps to supplement their incomes and makes them feel more self-sufficient. The physical and mental activity provides many therapeutic benefits as well. Donations are used exclusively to assist and support veterans and their families. The poppy also reminds the community of the past sacrifices and continuing needs of our veterans. Auxiliary members endeavor to explain the true meaning of this little flower to all those who receive it. The poppy has become a nationally known and recognized symbol of sacrifice and is worn and used by Auxiliary members to honor the men and women who served and died for their country in all wars. Please support each unit's activities in every county.

Exeter Village Board Agenda for May Meeting - Updated

Village of Exeter


Exeter, Nebraska 68351

Agenda for Reg. Meeting of 5-5-2010

7:00 p.m.

Approval of Minutes

Approval of Invoices

Pool Pay Request – Final Slide payment

Resolution 10-08 Authorizing sale of loader

Marshal Report

Maintenance Supervisor Report

Clerk’s Report

Damage at Storybook Park

There is definitely something missing in Storybook Park. Recently some "big kids" were playing in the park and broke the "rocking eagle" metal spring. Just a reminder to parents that this park is intended for PRESCHOOL AGED CHILDREN. Also, the park CLOSES AT DARK!!!!!

This equipment is designed for small children who are not in school yet. So, if your children are in school they should not be playing on the equipment.

Exeter-Milligan School Update

New Technology in Special Education


Anita Mueller, E-M Special Education Teacher

The Exeter-Milligan special education department has purchased some Livescribe Smart pens/notebooks for the students to use in their education classes. The 4GB Smart pens have an infrared camera, built in speaker, microphone, and need to be used with special dot matrix notebook paper. If you tap on one of the words in your notes or drawing with the tip of the Smart pen it will play back the recorded audio from that point in your notes. You can connect the Smart pen to your computer to transfer the audio and notes to the computer. There is a program that will also convert the ink into text. One of the students has been using it for notes in a history class and he says that it is great for when he misses some of the notes in a lecture, he can go back and listen to the lecture and fill in what he missed.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Lessons from Sharpie

Diane Bartels emotionally tells the story of "Sharpie" to a crowd in Milligan.

A model of the P-38 plane that took the life of Nebraska's Aviatrix Evelyn Sharp with a copy of her biography behind it.

The crowd in Milligan hears the story of "Sharpie from her biographer Diane Bartels.

Diane Bartels tells the story of "Sharpie" to a crowd in Milligan.

Diane Bartels autographs copies of her biography Sharpie, The Life Story of Evelyn Sharp, Nebraska's Aviatrix.

One teenager plus one small town equals endless possibilities and the sky is not the limit.

That is the story behind Nebraska teen aviatrix Evelyn Sharp and the town of Ord, a story that Diane Bartels knows very well.

Sharpie, as she preferred to be called, entered the life of Bartels at the airfield in Ord at the first Nebraska State Fly-in. The airport in Ord, known as Sharp Field, was hosting the Fly-In and was also planning to honor Evelyn Sharp with a national historical marker. Inside the hanger, Sharp’s mentor, Dr. Auble, was manning a table filled with letters and documents about Sharp, he was fishing for someone to tell her story and then, he met Bartels.

Bartels spoke last week in downtown Milligan to a crowd, most of whom witnessed the era of Sharp firsthand. She spoke of Sharp as “a woman I never met but through my research have grown to love.”

It is obvious that she has become absorbed in the amazing but short life of Sharp. It’s no wonder, for it is a fascinating story that starts with a teenage girl in the 1930’s and how the town of Ord supported her.

Bartels tells the story of how it began with Sharp receiving free flying lessons from a boarder in her parents’ rooming house who didn’t have the cash for his bill. After receiving her pilot’s license Sharp had no plane to fly so the downtown businesses got together and put a down payment on a plane for her.

The story continues when the town supports her barnstorming days, as she hauls over 5,000 passengers along with her father and her dog.

She eventually obtains a commercial pilots license and even an instructor’s license, a very rare thing for a woman in the dirty thirties. Of course, the town of Ord held a benefit dance to raise money for her to attend school in Lincoln even though she was only 20. As the only woman in Nebraska to fly during airmail week, there were hundreds on had to greet her with the postmaster at Ord.

Eventually this pilot instructed other pilots in preparation for World War II and herself was called up by the government, if she was interested, to find her own way to the East Coast and she would have a job transporting planes to save the male pilots from using up their available air time.

Bartels emphasized that although Sharp and the other women who answered the government telegram were members of the Women’s Auxiliary Ferrying Pilots (WAFP, later designated as WASP), in no way were they recognized as military. There was no equal pay, nor were there benefits but they endured all the same risks as their male counterparts.

Most of their time was spent shuttling planes from factories to bases on the East Coast and 38 female members of their group were killed in service to their country. Not until 1977 did Congress recognize these female pilots as veterans finally awarding them gold medals.

When Sharp arrived in Delaware to join the WAFP she had logged almost 3,000 hours of air time “more than anyone else,” according to Bartels.

Bartels retold the story of the last flight Sharp would take and was obviously distressed as she related the story of the crash that killed her. At 24 years old the “Queen of the Air” as she was known was gone. The Ord newspaper headline read “Ord’s Favorite Daughter Will Fly No More.”

Bartels emphasized the story behind the story especially for the younger crowd, “she came from a background that was not able to support her dreams but there were other people in the community help her make those aviation dreams come true…she struggled and had disappointments, flunked one of her flight school, grounding test and yet she didn’t give up. No one who looks successful in their life reached that point in their life without some detours or set backs what makes them different is that they didn’t give up they found a way to make their dreams a reality or they found it within themselves.”

Eventually Bartels collected all of her information into a book, entitled Sharpie, The Life Story of Evelyn Sharp, Nebraska’s Aviatrix.” She speaks all over the country at schools, aviation clubs, and groups telling the story of Sharpie. Bartels can be reached and her book can be purchased by contacting her at

The Milligan Public Library, funding from the Nebraska Humanities Council and the National Endowment for the Arts, sponsored the program in Milligan.

Editor's note: This event occurred in Milligan but was definitely a story that doesn't hurt to tell.