Saturday, April 19, 2014

Exeter Library Receives History Book Donation

Little did Karen High know what she would find when she received a donation of 12 boxes of books from Alice Barkmeier and her late husband Ray.  High works in the Technical Services division at Chatham Public Library in Chatham, Illinois.

In the large collection that the Chatham Public Library received from the Barkmeier’s there was a very special volume, the first Exeter history book titled “This Is Exeter.”

When High discovered the book and found the inscription inside the front cover announcing that it belonged to Lillian Barkmeier she began to dig around a little to find out more about the book. “I enjoy local history so I knew it would be important,” explained High.

While she had never heard of Exeter she knew she wanted to get the book back to its home.  “I did a little research to find out about the family and was able to find Ray’s tombstone in Florida but not a connection to Lillian.”

It was when she found the obituary for Ray’s parents that she found that Lillian was his sister.  High found Lillian’s obituary along with a beautiful tribute written for her by former Exeter Librarian Henrietta Harre.

“We have a local history and artifact museum room in our library.  Whenever something comes in that would be a treasure where it is from we make sure to try and get it back.  Sometimes we will get three, four or even five copies of the same unit and we just store the extras. If it’s not printed anymore we save them in case the originals disappear or get damaged,” explained High.

Once she found the proper home for the history book she contacted Exeter Librarian Jessica Votipka to see if the library would be interested in the copy of the book.

Votipka was thrilled to get the phone call and also to get the book in hand, “They [Chatham Public Library] really went out of their way to the book to us and it is beautiful condition, probably the best condition compared to the ones we already have.”

Currently the Exeter Library has two copies of the historical volume but both are beginning to show their age.
“The books are reference history and they are so important to the community.  People refer back to them all the time so it’s great to have enough copies to ensure that we always have one.  If one gets out of shape or damaged it’s good to have back up,” explained Votipka.

Two of the Barkmeier’s nieces live in the area, Barb Heffelfinger and Suzanne Johnson, both were surprised by the donation but glad that the book was returned home. They both looked forward to talking with Alice who is in her 90’s but “very sharp,” according to Heffelfinger.

Votipka is so thankful to have another copy as the library often gets patrons, both local and out of the area, who stop in to find information that is contained in the Exeter book.  She hopes to return the favor one day, “It kind of shows how the bond between librarians is strong, we help each other out.  Apparently it transcends geographical border.  It inspires you to pay it forward to other libraries and your patrons along with the community.”

High was also able to forward a history book about Hampton, Neb. Back to the historical society in Hamilton County.

below: Exeter Librarian Jessica Votipka holds the copy of “This is Exeter” that was given to the library through the Chatham Public Library.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Exeter Chamber Sponsors Easter Egg Hunt

Once again the Exeter Chamber of Commerce sponsored the annual Easter Egg Hunt held at the Exeter-Milligan school.  The Exeter-Milligan FCCLA assisted with the event, stuffing the eggs, hiding them and then coordinating the event.  The Chamber had lots of prizes for the kids 0 - fourth grade and the kids got to find tons of eggs.  The weather was beautiful and the event was held outside at the Exeter Elementary playground.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Volkmer Benefit Auction

Bill and Terri Volkmer don’t know where to start on their list of thanking people.  What they thought would be a benefit consisting of “a few peanuts, some beer and a box for donations” turned into an event that more than 600 people attended.

Bill has been fighting cancer for the last 23 years.  According to his wife, Terri, this is his sixth round with the nasty beast.  A neighbor and friend, Tess Moor, has tried four times to let her organize a benefit to help the couple and after saying no a few more times they finally gave in to what they thought would be a simple affair.
Co-chairs, Barb Jansen and Moor, first concocted the event but it ballooned almost overnight.  Linda Underwood got involved as the Silent Auction chair along with Bob Mueller and Pat Becker and they ended up with 179 items to auction during the benefit.

Other chairpersons were Bob and Pat Becker who helped organize the meal, all of which was donated.  Becky Luzum took care of the facebook page which had over 500 followers in just a few days.   Chris Manning was in charge of set up and Butch and Barb Jansen headed the clean-up committee.

As the donations came in Mary Burgess and Becky Luzum drove the area picking up silent auction items and passing out posters.  “So many helped with getting things ready for the event,” explained Moor and Jansen.
The Legion in Exeter began to fill up on Saturday, April 5th even before the meal began. The crowd included friends of the Volkmer’s from Kansas, Colorado, Illinois and Iowa in addition to the locals from Exeter and surrounding towns.  Even the silent auction items came from all over the nation.  

The Volkmer’s “stopped by” for what turned out to be three hours of the evening. “We’re very humbled.  It was an experience.  We have been blessed to have so many people who care about us in this community and beyond.”

Bill was so moved by the incredible outpouring of love he and Terri felt, “I had a tremendous good time and got to see a lot of people that I don’t see a lot of.” 

Organizers Jansen and Moor agreed, “It takes a great community to pull off an event like this.”
Jansen added, “I have never been so proud of our town.  I don’t think we’ve ever had a benefit like this before.  It was wonderful that so many people wanted to help.”

Moor stated, “We never had any problem finding people to help.  It just kept getting bigger and bigger.  It took good committees and good dedicated people who wanted to work.”

Underwood was excited to be a part of the event noting that the Volkmer’s “ would be the first ones here if it was somebody else.  There are so many things they have done for the community that I was glad to see this happen.”

The Volkmers are so thankful for the event, “We appreciate it so much.  Although we have insurance, there are still so many costs associated with the treatment.  So many that aren’t covered by insurance like the travel to get chemo and the food while we are there.  The money will be put to good use.” 
Right now Bill and Terri are focusing on Bill’s health, but “We’re still kind of in shock from the overwhelming generosity, but we plan to pay it forward.  The wheels in my head are turning,” explained Terri.

Earlier this year, John E’s held a chili cook off with all of the proceeds going to the Volkmer’s.  There are also paracord “Bracelets for Bill” that are made and sold by Courtney and Alyssa Naber in York.  They are the daughters of the Volkmer’s nephew and Alyssa is their goddaughter.

In addition another committee member, Nancy Jensen, is working with Thrivent to get some matching funds.  There is an account set up for the Volkmer’s at Generations Bank that will be open for donations until the end of the month.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Agenda for the Exeter-Milligan School Board Meeting TONIGHT!

Monthly Meeting – Music Room in MILLIGAN
Wednesday, April 16, 2014 – 8:00 PM
Bills: S. Kuska
1. Recognition of Visitors
2. Motion to verify that this meeting of the school board of the Exeter-Milligan Public School was
duly advertised and that all board members were notified as to the time and place of the meeting
pursuant to board policy and practice.
3. Consensus Agenda: Items can be requested for singular consideration
Treasurer’s Report
Minutes of March 12, 2014 Regular Meeting
Minutes of March 26, 2014 Work Session
April Expenditures
4. Curricular Report – K-6 Elementary Education
5. Public Comment time - limited to 3 minutes each and must pertain to an agenda item.
6. Old Business
A. PreK-6 Proposal
B. Breakfast/Lunch Program for 2014-15
C. Preschool update
D. Building project update
E. Principal contracts
F. Activity Co-op requests
G. Track project - approve bid from Ackland Construction
7. New Business
A. Approve Teacher Contracts for Art and Elementary Positions for 2014-15
B. Renew softball coop with Fillmore Central for 2014-15/2015-16.
C. Approve Interlocal Agreement with SNRP
8. Information / Discussion
A. State Aid for 2014-15
B. East Butler and Crossroads Conference
C. Next Regular Meeting – May ______ at Exeter at 8:00 PM
8. Adjournment

Monday, April 14, 2014

Perennial Public Power District recognizes National Lineman Appreciation Day

Perennial Public Power District is recognizing April 18, 2014, as National Lineman Appreciation Day to honor the hardworking men who work often in challenging conditions to keep the power on.
We are recognizing all electric linemen for the services they perform around the clock in dangerous conditions to keep the power on and protect the public’s safety.
“Electric linemen do not often receive the recognition they deserve,” said Randy Martin, Manager of Operations. “They work each day, often in hazardous conditions, going above and beyond to provide power to their communities. When a major outage occurs, our linemen sacrifice time with their families to work day and night to restore electricity to the district. Our linemen, as well as linemen from all across the nation, truly deserve this special day of recognition.”
Perennial Public Power District plans to recognize all of their linemen for their dedication at their April safety meeting. Perennial encourages the community to take a moment to thank a lineman for the work they do.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Exeter-Milligan Update: Junior High Honor Band

Seven Exeter-Milligan students were selected to the Meridian Junior High Honor Band held at Meridian on Friday, April 4. The band was under the direction of Mr. Mark Irvin.  Pictured (L-R) Patrick Murphy, trombone; Peytan Brandt, percussion; Joel Klemm, tuba; Kaitlyn Vavra, clarinet; Mr. Mark Irvin, director; Alexis Uldrich, flute; Hannah Horne, baritone saxophone; Tara Mueller, flute