Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Czech Days This Weekend

As the first weekend of August approaches, so does the Wilber Czech Days Festival -- perhaps Saline County's most notable event.

Our readers in Wilber tell us that town officials have spent the past few days preparing for the 2008 National Czech Festival, which will be held this Friday, Saturday and Sunday (Aug. 1, 2 and 3).

Every year at this time, Wilber swells to more than 50,000 as folks come from miles around to celebrate their own Czech ancestry or to pay tribute to some of the county's early pioneers. The community of 1,700 has been the Czech capital of Nebraska since 1963 and of the United States since 1987. The festival itself began in 1962.

This year, Czech Days kick off Friday at 5 p.m. with activities such as the Accordion Jamboree, Wilber Czech Dancers, and the Children's Parade.

On Saturday morning, the day's events start with the Duck and Dumpling Run at 7 a.m. Throughout the rest of the weekend, you can enjoy activities for all ages such as the Art Show, dance contest, Czech dinners, museum tours, quilt show, Czech heritage demonstrations, and the sounds of various polka bands.

The parade starts at 2 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. The Miss Czech-Slovak U.S.A. Queen Pageant begins at 7 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday at the Outdoor Theatre. The Czech Historical Pageant is held on both Friday and Saturday evenings. Other activities include the polka mass, talent contest, Czech Museum, kolace eating contest, dancing and much more.

For more information and a full listing of this weekend's activities, visit

Monday, July 28, 2008

Time For A Tunnel Walk At DHS?

Recently, one of our readers sent us an e-mail suggesting that Dorchester High School should feature a "tunnel walk" for the Longhorns' football team.

Reader "CJ" wrote: "The Longhorns need to start a new [pre-game] tradition similar to that of the Huskers at Memorial Stadium."

CJ's idea would have music playing over the loud speakers to "fire up" the DHS faithful at home games as the Longhorns make their way from the locker rooms to Nerud Field -- similar to the Huskers' tunnel walk to the old Alan Parsons Project tune "Sirius." CJ said that Longhorn fans could "form a pathway" from the school's north parking lot to the field.

We thought the idea was worth sharing with other Times' readers.

What do you think of CJ's suggestion? Is it worth consideration? And what song would you choose for the DHS "tunnel walk"?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

News Update: DVFD Open House & Roast This Saturday

  • DVFD Open House On July 26: All Dorchester area residents and vistitors are invited to the Dorchester Fire & Rescue Dept. open house this Saturday, July 26. The DVFD members will be roasting a hog for the event. The event begins at 5 p.m. at the Dorchester Fire Hall. Take a few minutes from your day and say thanks to our volunteer first responders!

  • Husker Tire Owners To Merge With Dorchester's Farmers Co-op?: According to the Seward County Independent, Seward's Nebraska Tire closed its doors for good July 17. Terry Samuelson, interim manager for Countryside Cooperative -- parent company for Nebraska Tire -- said the corporate entity is "looking to merge with the Farmers Cooperative in Dorchester, though nothing is final." We at the Times wonder what, if anything, such a merger might mean for Dorchester area residents?

  • DHS Featured In In less than 45 days, the Dorchester Longhorns football team will kick off another season. In an article titled "Big Bruha-ha Building at Dorchester," the renowned sports publication recently previewed the 2008 Longhorns. Huskerland Prep reporter Bob Jensen writes: "With all their skill players back, including an outstanding quarterback, the Dorchester Longhorns need only to develop a line to make some noise in its district race. Co-head coaches Ryan Voelker and Brent Zoubek led the team to the playoffs in 2006 and after a 3-5 season in 2007 look for a rebound next fall, saying the team will strive to maximize its potential, knowing that good things will come if that's the case." The Dorchester Times is predicting a 6-2 regular season for the Longhorns this season. The first game is a home contest against Shelby on Sept. 5.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Construction Boom Continues

In the past year, Dorchester has experienced a construction boom of sorts --a new shelter at the city park; a new school and campus renovation; several commercial building improvements.

This new activity signals positive developments for our community and our citizens' quality of life.

This month, construction crews are putting the finishing touches on the sixth additional silo at the Dorchester Farmers Cooperative elevator -- the economic hub of our town.

Now the Times has learned of plans by private citizens to build new restrooms and a concession stand at Nerud Field.

According to sources, the present-day concession shack will likely be moved east of the visitors' dugout and used as a storage facility.

We applaud the individuals who are organizing the Nerud Field modernization project, and we invite them to use the Dorchester Times to inform others how they can assist -- with their time or financial resources -- in this worthwhile effort.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Another Soaker Hits Dorchester Area

The precipitation keeps coming.

Following the rain that fell last night and in the early hours of this morning, the Times' official rain gauge shows just over 3". Some area farms are reporting more than 5".

Small hail and damaging winds accompanied the rain. Estimates on crop and property damage are not yet available. (*UPDATE: 7/16, 7 p.m.* -- According to the National Weather Service, Doppler radar estimates that 2 to 4 inches fell across much of the area from Milford through Dorchester and Crete. The weather service issued flood warnings for the West Fork of the Big Blue River north of town from Thursday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. Minor flooding is expected. Turkey Creek and small streams south of town and in northeastern Saline County are also above flood level as of this writing. At least two trees fell on vehicles in Dorchester. No one was injured.)

The Dorchester area has received about 4.6" this month and approximately 14.1" since June 1.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Youth Football Camp To Be Held July 23 & 24

Ready or not, the new football season is just around the corner. And once again, the coaches at DHS are offering young players in the Dorchester area a chance to improve their gridiron game.

On July 23 and 24, DHS football coaches Ryan Voelker and Brent Zoubek will hold the Dorchester Area Youth Football Camp for boys who are entering grades 5 through 8. The camp will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. both nights.

According to Coach Zoubek, the camp will introduce and reinforce some of the basic fundamentals of football and education of the game through the instruction, discipline, and the fun and enjoyment that the great game offers.

The cost is $15 per player. Both payment and entry form are due no later than the day of camp. Participants will receive a Dorchester Longhorns Football t-shirt.

For more information, or to register, please contact Brent Zoubek at 946-2198 or or Ryan Voelker at 416-8058 or

A copy of the camp entry form can found below:

-------------------------------------------- CLIP HERE ---------------------------------------------


Name: ______________________________________________________

Address: ____________________________________________________

Phone Number: _______________________________________________

Emergency contact and phone number: _____________________________

Grade: ____ Favorite NFL Football Team: ___________________________

Athlete Signature: ______________________________________________

Parent Signature: ______________________________________________

*Please return a.s.a.p. to Brent Zoubek, 1111 Colfax Ave. Dorchester, NE 68343*


Tuesday, July 8, 2008

News Briefs: New School Walls Going Up

  • New School Walls Going Up: The walls of the new school building are going up where the 1928 school once stood. The picture at the right shows the raising of the first section of the walls. The new school year is expected to start in mid-September in the new 33,500 square foot addition, which will feature both elementary and high school classrooms, a multi-purpose room with stage, library and administrative offices. Photos of Ayars & Ayars' work on the renovation on the west side of the campus can be viewed by clicking here.

  • Bruhas Named Pioneer Farm Family: The Shelly Bruha family of Dorchester is one of this year's Nebraska Pioneer Farm Families, according the Omaha World-Herald. The Knights of Ak-Sar-Ben and the Nebraska Fair Managers Association have announced the 185 honorees who will receive the 2008 Pioneer Farm Family Awards, recognize families that have owned a parcel of land for at least 100 consecutive years. Since its inception 52 years ago, more than 7,000 families have been granted this award. The Bruhas will receive their award during the upcoming county fair.

  • Saline County Included In CRP Release: The USDA is releasing Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres for livestock grazing in Saline County and other areas recently designated as Presidential Disaster Areas because of flooding. To be approved, CRP participants must write their county FSA office, obtain a modified conservation plan and receive county office approval before beginning to graze. Participants will experience a 25 percent reduction in their CRP rental payments.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Suggestion Box II: Your Comments For The School Board

As we did last summer, we are again offering Times' readers the opportunity to comment directly to the elected members of the Dorchester Board of Education. Issues may include school infrastructure, instructors or other staff, spending and budget, or other school-related topics. (Please refrain from directly or indirectly mentioning specific individuals, however. Such comments will not be published.)

Our "Suggestion Box" series provides an open forum for readers to offer suggestions, complaints and compliments for local leaders. It also allows readers to pose questions -- and we hope that School Board members or staff will take time to reply. We only ask that readers keep any critical remarks civil.

Below are the comments left last week for the members of the Dorchester Village Board. As always, we are impressed with the thoughtfulness of the comments and ideas offered by readers, as well as the common courtesy and sincerity in which they are presented. We rejected only one comment in last week's discussion.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

EDITORIAL: Remember The Reason For The Fourth

It's time to celebrate another Fourth of July. It's time for those barbecues. Time for baseball and homemade goodies. Time for fireworks.

As we approach the 232nd birthday of our nation, we at the Times want to pay tribute to the ideas and ideals of the founders that still make ours the most successful experiment in human history.

One of our favorite reminders of America's greatness came from President Ronald Reagan during his farewell speech in 1989. Reagan said: "Ours was the first revolution in the history of mankind that truly reversed the course of government, and with three little words: 'We the people.' 'We the people' tell the government what to do, it doesn't tell us. 'We the people' are the driver, the government is the car. And we decide where it should go, and by what route, and how fast. Almost all the world's constitutions are documents in which governments tell the people what their privileges are. Our Constitution is a document in which 'We the people' tell the government what it is allowed to do."

These words give sound guidance not only in a presidential election year, but also in a time when Dorchester residents must decide who will lead their community in the future.

For years, some of our nation's leaders have warned of an eradication of the American memory that could result in an erosion of the American spirit. Unfortunately, those warnings have turned prophetic in some cases.

Too many Americans, even here in the Heartland, have never learned the story the American Revolution or been adequately taught about the ingeniousness and bravery of our founders. But that can change overnight, household by household. As Reagan said in his farewell speech, "All great change in America begins at the dinner table. So, tomorrow night in the kitchen, I hope the talking begins. And children, if your parents haven't been teaching you what it means to be an American, let 'em know and nail 'em on it. That would be a very American thing to do."

Let's use this Independence Day to refresh our own American memories and renew our own American spirits by re-examining the words of our Declaration of Independence. In between the barbecues and the fireworks, we hope Dorchester area residents will take just a couple of minutes to remember true significance of July Fourth.

The following are key excepts from the nation's founding document:

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America

"When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes ... But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies ...

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.