Friday, November 19, 2010

Arnold Bobolz Passes Away Nov. 10

Former Dorchester resident Arnold G. Bobolz, 89, died Nov. 10, 2010, in Lincoln. Mr. Bobolz was born Nov. 9, 1921, in Primghar, Iowa, to Gustav and Louise (Tomm) Bobolz. He served in the United States Army during World War II and was awarded the Purple Heart and four Bronze Stars. He was a member of the American Legion and served as district chaplain.

He was a long-time member of the United Methodist Church in Dorchester and was active in the church choir.

Survivors include his wife Jean Bobolz, Lincoln, formerly of Dorchester; sons and daughter-in-law Larry and Peg Blake, Ashland, Ore., and Lance Bobolz, Fort Worth, Texas; daughters and sons-in-law Peggy and Ken Krasser, Beaver Crossing, and Brenda and Dennis McKay, Avondale, Ariz.; eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Service was Nov. 15, 2010, at Christ United Methodist Church, Lincoln. Memorials may be made to the Dorchester United Methodist Church or the Dorchester American Legion.

Monday, November 15, 2010

OPEN FORUM: November 2010

The Times' Open Forum gives our readers their chance to say something, report breaking news, fire off a complaint, praise a fellow area resident, or simply ask a question. Any topic is fair game, although the Times' comment policy still applies. Keep it clean; keep it civil.

The Times is the perfect forum to air your thoughts, news tips, announcements, complaints and concerns. With hundreds visiting this site each day, your comment will get noticed.

The Open Forum is also a great place to find out what old friends are up to, get advice, share and find information, and let the Times' staff know what you'd like to see on this community Web site.

Go ahead and sound off. We are listening. And so are hundreds of others

Phony Cop Pulls Over Woman In Dorchester

Maybe Dorchester has a police officer in training.The Saline County Sheriff's Office says a phony police officer pulled over a woman near Dorchester and searched her vehicle. The Associated Press is reporting that the sheriff's office says the woman reported that she was pulled over on Nov. 5 while driving on U.S. Highway 6 near Nebraska Highway 33.

The woman, a student at Doane College, says the man was driving a dark vehicle that had a gold stripe on the side and an emergency light on the top. The man was wearing a black, police-style uniform. She told the sheriff's office that she agreed to let the "officer" search her vehicle, then he let her go. No arrest has been reported.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Another View Of Dorchester's Proud Past

The Times has located yet another old picture of Dorchester's proud past. This photo offers Times readers yet another view of our main street (Washington Avenue) and its businesses as they appeared around 1900.

The picture featured here is on a postcard currently on auction at

Our staff historians believe the focal point of the photo is Freidell's Grocery and Dry Goods Store and the Abe Martin Drug Store, or perhaps the Kenney Cafe.

The photo, shot by Russell Freidell, clearly show the upper-most structure of the buildings read "Ireland" -- likely an owner or architect. It is unknown when those portions were removed. Those who wish to view the postcard or bid on the item, currently priced at $12, may do so simply by clicking here.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Jensen, Karl Sent To Village Board; Pracheil Re-Elected

Election Day ushered in two new village board members, as voters decided to send newcomers Joyce Karl and Todd Jensen to Village Hall. Former board member Dean Pracheil was re-elected, beating fourth-place finisher Kevin Olson by six votes.

The results show that the electorate was hungry for a new direction, said several voters. Pro-paving supporters said the addition of Jensen and Karl could encourage current board members to take a more serious look at paving more Dorchester streets.

The new board will convene in January.

Here are the election results, according to the Saline County clerk's office:
  • Kevin Olson - 66
  • Caroll Schnell - 54
  • Joyce Karl - 81
  • Todd Jensen - 77
  • Dean Pracheil - 72
  • Zech Williams - 64

Monday, November 1, 2010

SPECIAL REPORT: Nov. 2 Election Will Determine Future Of Dorchester

Tomorrow, Nov. 2, is Election Day. Despite all the talk of the national races, there is also a lot at stake in tomorrow's Dorchester's Village Board election. In fact, the results of our local election could very well determine the progress and quality of life in Dorchester -- or lack thereof -- over the next decade.

The polls open at 8 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. tomorrow.

Six town residents are vying for three seats on the Dorchester Village Board.
  • Kevin Olson
  • Caroll Schnell
  • Joyce Karl
  • Todd Jensen
  • Dean Pracheil
  • Zech Williams
Sources tell the Times that at least three (Olson, Karl and Jensen) of the six challengers strongly want to consider paving more Dorchester streets and take a more aggressive policy on blighted properties in town. (Candidates should feel free to leave their position statements on the "comments" section of this this post.)

Tomorrow's elections could drastically shift the composition of the Village Board. Currently, two of the five board members staunchly oppose paving, while only one publicly supports it. The other two board members appear to be undecided. The addition of two or three pro-paving candidates will likely give the pro-paving supporters a decisive majority at Village Hall.

Earlier this year, the Times conducted a non-scientific online opinion poll that found that roughly 82% (out of 167 votes) of readers say they want to consider paving. Approximately 13% of readers would rather see more gravel applied to the town's roads. About 4% want nothing done. Only one vote per IP address was allowed.

The Times has also been told that tomorrow's elections could also impact the direction the town takes in working with the Farmers Cooperative (the town's largest employer), as well the hiring of village employees.


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Our Final Post

In April 2007, the Dorchester Times went online for the first time. Our mission was to fill the void of communication between our fellow residents.

Over the past three and a half years, the Times has broken news stories, published updates and notices, taken polls, addressed important community issues and -- most importantly -- encouraged area residents to start talking more often about their town and the quality of life here.

Tonight, we sign off -- at least for the time being.

To our loyal readers and commentators, we say thank you.

To those who may have disagreed with some of our posts and/or commentary, we say no hard feelings.

From Village Hall, to Dorchester Public School, to main street, to our organizations and volunteer groups, Dorchester is in very capable hands. We hope every member of our community chooses to play an active, positive role in making our town an even better place to live -- to improve the lives of their family members and their neighbors.

Long live Dorchester.

Thieves Rob Dorchester Area Businesses

The Saline County Sheriff's Department tells the Dorchester Times that Sheriff Alan Moore's team is investigating two recent burglaries in the Dorchester area.

According to reports, unknown persons broke into Ben's Iron Grill during the early morning hours of Aug. 4 and removed an undisclosed amount of money and other miscellaneus items.

Also during the morning hours of Aug. 5, unknown persons broke into one of the Dorchester Farmers Cooperative buildings along Highway 33, east of town. The thieves took miscellaneous tools and equipment worth more than $21,000, according to an anonymous source.

Anyone with information regarding either incendent is encouraged to contact the Saline County Sheriff's Office at (402) 821-2111. You may e-mail Sheriff Moore at Or leave an anonymous tip at Crime Stoppers at 1-800-345-3361.

Man Stabbed At Czech Days

Today's Beatrice Daily Sun includes a story of how an attempted vehicle theft escalated into a stabbing Saturday night during the Czech Festival in Wilber. Randy D. Perry, 24 of Peru was arrested Saturday night after allegedly stabbing Jeremy Samples, 30 of Hickman. Perry is charged with assault in the first degree, use of a deadly weapon to commit a felony, resisting arrest and disturbing the peace. See the story by clicking here.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Dorchester Times Offers Services To Other Communities

Blogs like this are an excellent communication tool and information resource for smaller communities. Now the creators and editors of the Dorchester Times are offering their services to other area communities interested in creating websites similar to this blog.

Times staff will utilize to design the website according to the needs of community leaders, who will have the final say regarding the content.

Once website is completed and online, community leaders will be able to update the site themselves. Or, if preferred, Times editors will maintain the site with guidance from individuals in the communities being served.

If you are interested in the Times staff helping you create a blog for your community, please e-mail us at for more information.

Construction Boom Continues In Dorchester

In the past few years, Dorchester has experienced a construction boom -- a new shelter at the city park; a new school and campus renovation; a new snack shack and restrooms at Nerud Field; and several commercial building improvements.

This new activity signals positive developments for our community and our citizens' quality of life. Over the past couple of days, construction crews have been busy putting the finishing touches on the seventh additional silo at the Dorchester Farmers Cooperative elevator, the economic hub of our town.

According to sources, the silo represents more than $1 million in additional investment in our community.

That means more property tax revenue for the village (streets, sewer and other projects) and the school.

We applaud leaders at the Cooperative who continue to put Dorchester on the map in the agribusiness world.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Is Chester Getting The Boot From DPS?

Could Dorchester Public Schools soon be losing one of its most famous residents?

According to reports posted at the July "Open Forum" post on this website, school officials are currently in discussions about removing Chester, the mounted Longhorn head, from the school gymnasium. Our sources tell us Chester has hung on the north gym wall for nearly 20 years.

The anonymous commentator wrote: "I heard a rumor that the school is considering getting rid of Chester, the longhorn head that has been in the gym, (since it) is a liability hazard ... I was unable to attend the last school board meeting. Is this correct? (Chester) has been a long-time member of the school. What do students and alumni think of this?"

What do you think about the possible removal of Chester? Is it time for the old dude to go? Is he a potential hazard? Or is he a source of school pride and an intimidation factor to opposing teams? Or was he stolen?! Leave your comments here.

Early-Stage Tornado Over Dorchester Spotted On Radar

Tornado spawning activity last night over Dorchester has our community in the news once again. (Ironically, a severe windstorm causing much damage struck Dorchester one year ago today.)

At, meteorologist Kevin Martin wrote late last night: "Interesting night we have here as supercells have formed in Nebraska and quickly have been going tornado warned. These cells came without a tornado watch from the Storm Prediction Center over at NOAA."

Martin wrote that several supercells formed in southern Nebraska. With the use of enhanced radar in 3D, Martin found the image of a funnel cloud or even tornado on the ground near Dorchester.

See images of last night's "infant tornado" over Dorchester at this

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Mob Grazing, Organic Farm Tours Set For Dorchester Area

The Dorchester Times has learned that a University of Nebraska-Lincoln organic pasture walk featuring mob grazing and two organic farm tours will be offered in our area on Aug. 19 and Aug. 21.

The Aug. 19 pasture walk will begin at 9 a.m. at the Don and Pat Jirsa farm northwest of Dorchester (2040 Saltillo Rd). Don Jirsa will explain his pivot irrigated pasture and mob grazing system, while Terry Gompert, UNL Extension educator, will offer advice and answer questions about mob grazing, which is ultra-high stock-density grazing to ensure that nearly everything in a small area is either eaten or trampled, including weeds and less-palatable grasses. Manure also gets distributed very evenly and also is trampled into the soil, improving soil fertility.

The tour will move to the Welsch's West Blue Farm, at 146 County Rd. 1900 in Saline County, just a half mile south of the West Blue Church. Participants will be able to view a dryland mob grazing system that uses portable fencing and watering systems, and hear helpful suggestions from Crete Lumber and Farm Supply. Free lunch will be provided by the Welsch family followed by a tour of their organic ridge-tilled crops and alfalfa rotation.

The two organic crop and livestock tours will be Aug. 21 east of David City in Butler County. The first tour starts at 1:30 p.m. at the Larry Stanislav farm, 1.75 miles north of Abie. At 3 p.m. participants will move to the second tour at the Ostry Family Farm (2281 Spur 12B Rd.) a half-mile northeast of Bruno on Spur 12B. A free dinner will be provided by the Ostry family at 5 p.m. followed by Czech entertainment by the Ostry Family Singers.

For more information about the tours, contact Dave Welsch at (402) 826-5361. Meals for both tours are free. Call or leave a message with Carol at the Nebraska Great Plains Resource Conservation and Development office at (402) 367-0510 to reserve a meal.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Dorchester Booster Club Meeting Next Monday

A new school year is just around the corner, and it's time for an organizational meeting of the DHS Booster Club.

The Booster Club will meet next Monday, August 9, at 7 p.m. in the school cafeteria.

Agenda items include:

a.) Annual Fall Sports Preview
b.) Ordering/Selling Longhorn Apparel
c.) Membership Drive
d.) Other Matters

Your leadership is needed and wanted. All area residents are invited to join the Dorchester Booster Club.

Monday, July 26, 2010

OPEN FORUM: July 2010

The Times' Open Forum gives our readers their chance to:
  • say something
  • report breaking news
  • fire off a complaint
  • praise a fellow area resident
  • simply ask a question.

Any topic is fair game, although the Times' comment policy still applies. Keep it clean; keep it civil. (Please see the bottom of the left-hand column.)

The Times is the perfect forum to air your thoughts, news tips, announcements, complaints and concerns. With hundreds visiting this site each day, your comment will get noticed. The Open Forum is also a great place to find out what old friends are up to, get advice, share and find information, and let the Times' staff know what you'd like to see on this community Web site.

Go ahead and sound off. We are listening. And so are hundreds of others.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Times Reiterates Its Comments Policy

Based on the comments of some readers over the past few weeks, it's clear there is still some misunderstanding of this website's comment policy. So let's revisit.

The Times was designed to facilitate lively discussion. We value the feedback from our readers. However, the Times will not publish the following:

* Comments with blatant personal attacks. (Constructive criticism of decisions or performance by public figures -- including elected officials or members of the media -- will be permitted as long as done tastefully, without libel or "unverifiable hearsay.");

* Comments using racial, ethnic or religious slurs; or obscenity or profanity (including expletives with dashes/symbols);

* Abusive, threatening or inappropriate remarks;

* Incoherent communications;

* Spam and unsolicited advertisements;

* Comments with absolutely no connections to the topic of the Times story.

It should be noted again that all comments on this blog are the responsibility of the commenter, not the Times staff or its editors. By submitting a comment to the Times, you agree that the comment content is your own.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

DHS Volleyball Clinic Next Week, Open Gym Tonight

All area volleyball players in grades 7-12 are encouraged to take part in next week's Dorchester High School Volleyball Clinic at the school's main gym. The session will be held next Wednesday and Thursday, July 28-29, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lunch is provided.

Players will learn the fundamentals of volleyball and have lots of fun for $56 per player. This clinic is being conducted by former NU volleyball player Tonia Tauke, who has been coaching and teaching volleyball since graduating from UNL. For more information on her you may go to her Facebook page

If interested in the clinic, call Tish Hewitt by noon on July 27 at or (402) 418-1031.

Meanwhile, there will be an open gym for those interested in volleyball in grades 7-12 tonight, July 21, from 6:45 p.m. until 7:45 p.m.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Sports Roundup: National League Baseball Team Captures Championship

  • Dorhester National League Baseball Team Takes SFS Championship: Earlier this month, the Dorchester National League team (ages 13-15) earned the title of SFS League champions. A local resident familiar with the Dorchester baseball program told the Times it was the first time in two decades that the Dorchester National League has captured the SFS League title, but we were unable to confirm that information. In '70s and '80s, Dorchester was a perennial No. 1 or No. 2 team. This season, the Dorchester National League team won the regular season in the nine-team league. In tournament play, Dorchester beat Friend, 13-5, in second-round play. In the third round, Dorchester had to fight hard to defeat a scrappy Exeter team in extra innings, 7-6. In the championship game, Dorchester beat Wilber (black) by a final tally of 3-1. Congratulations to the Dorchester National League ballplayers and rising-star coaches Matt Carroll and Kurt Bleach!

  • Dorchester Co-Ed Team Wins Western Softball Tourney: The Times received two e-mails reporting that a Dorchester co-ed softball team took first place at the Western Old Settlers softball tournament on Saturday, July 17. The co-ed squad won the championship game 15-5 over the defending champions of the tournament, capturing a $300 prize. Congrats!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Ben's Iron Grill Gets Rave Reviews In Journal Star

Today's Lincoln Journal Star and its "Ground Zero" publication include a lengthy, flattering review of Ben's Iron Grill in Dorchester.

Reporter and food critic L. Kent Wolgamott writes: "Pull into Dorchester, drive north down main street, park in the middle of the wide boulevard and stroll into Ben's Iron Grill for some fine homemade fare delivered with small-town charm and small-town prices."

In the article, Wolgamott raves about the queen-cut prime rib, the St. Louis-style pork ribs, and the seafood linguine -- as well as the small-town prices. He adds: "The coleslaw and macaroni and cheese were both delicious and homemade, as is everything at Ben's. The entrees also include a trip to the large, well-stocked salad bar."

Wolgamott concludes by writing: "Ben's also is a full-service bar, complete with a jar of pickled eggs. It has flat-screen TVs, a beer/smoking garden, keno and pickle cards, and the bar has begun hosting bands and karaoke on some weekend nights. That combination could make for a fun evening. But it's well worth a trip to Dorchester just for the food. And don't worry about getting a ticket - you're supposed to park in the middle of the street."

See the review here.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Heeren, Palky Farms To Recieve Pioneer Family Honor

Two farms in our area have been designated to receive Nebraska's Pioneer Farm Family Awards. The Jim Heeren Farm and Palky Farms LP, both of rural Dorchester, will receive the award at the Saline County Fair.

To qualify, members of the same family must have owned a parcel of land consecutively for at least 100 years.

The Knights of Ak-Sar-Ben, the Nebraska Fair Managers Association and the Nebraska Farm Bureau are sponsors of the award.

The award was initiated 56 years ago. Each honoree receives a plaque and gatepost marker, presented during the 2010 fair in the county where the land is situated.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Top 10 DHS Football Teams Of All Time

(Updated, 7/13) Today, the Times ranks the best Dorchester High School football teams of all time.

Over the last several months, our staff surveyed several DHS fans and alumni -- including former players and student managers. We believe that we have accurately identified and ranked the top ten Longhorn teams to ever hit the gridiron. Beginning with the best DHS football team of all time, they are:

1.) 1971 (Undefeated and touted as the best Class D team in Nebraska by many sportswriters.)

2.) 1979 (Undefeated and touted as one the best Class C-2 teams in Nebraska by many.)

3.) 1977 (Ranked No. 7 in Class C-2 by the Lincoln Journal and No. 5 by the Omaha World-Herald at season's end. Pioneer Conference champs. "The hardest hitting team ever to wear the DHS uniform," one local expert said.)

4.) 1976 (Ranked No. 5 in Class D by the Lincoln Journal and No. 7 by the Omaha World-Herald at season's end. Pioneer Conference champs.)

5.) 1978 (Ranked No. 5 in Class D by the Omaha World-Herald at season's end. Pioneer Conference champs.)

6.) 1958 (Ranked No. 2 in six-man by the Omaha World-Herald.)

7.) 1959 (Ranked No. 8 in six-man by the World-Herald.)

8.) 1986 (Ranked No. 8 in Class C-2 by the Omaha World-Herald at season's end. State qualifier.)

9.) 1987 (Ranked No. 9 in Class C-2 by the Lincoln Journal and No. 5 by the Omaha World-Herald at season's end. State qualifier.)

10.) 1994 (State qualifier in eight-man. Only team to lead Falls City Sacred Heart that season.)

** Honorable Mention: 2006 (State qualifier in eight-man) and 1999 (eight-man).

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Spencer Kotas Wins Carp Contest

The Times has learned that recent DHS graduate Spencer Kotas hauled in the heaviest carp as part of Ben's Iron Grill annual "Big Carp Contest" held July 4.

According to reports, it was rumored that Spencer's stepfather, Wayne Havlat, may have caught the five-pound monster of the deep in him farm pond, but Havlat would not comment on the potential scandal.

The Buzek brothers of Milligan came in a distant second place with a "two-pound sewer bass." Tom and his bother were proud of their catch, nonetheless, according to reports.

Spencer and Wayne have been invited to Ben's for a free meal.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Bible School, Potato Bake Planned At Dorchester UMC

The area community is invited to take part in two fun-filled events planned for next week at the Dorchester United Methodist Church (UMC). All area residents are encouraged to take part.

* Potato Bake & Sundaes: This Sunday, July 11, beginning at 11:30 a.m. in the Dorchester UMC Fellowship Hall, there will be a Camp Scholarship Fundraiser. Those attending will be treated to baked potatoes with 10 or more toppings, salads and sundaes with toppings. Free-will offering (sundaes are 50 cents).

* Vacation Bible School: This year's VBS theme is "A Cosmic Adventure Praising God!" Bible school begins on Monday, July 12, with registration (for all area children) from 5:45 p.m. - 6 p.m. Bible school will be conducted from 6 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. On Wednesday, July 14, there will be a short program for parents starting at 8:30 p.m. VBS activities will include singing, crafts, games and exciting Bible stories and lessons that will bring us closer to God. All are invited to attend.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Farmers Market At Saline Center Begins Sunday

Beginning this Sunday, July 11, the farmers market at Saline Center will get underway and be open every Sunday from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Check out some of the locally grown goods and produce from the Saline County area. And here's the best part: No charge for vendors.

The Saline Center kitchen and bar will be open. The kitchen will operate 6-8:30 p.m.; the bar will close at 10 p.m. Food and drink specials will be offered every weekend.

Come out and enjoy one of the highlights of summer in Saline County

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Our Streets In July: Still Unacceptable!

Earlier this year, during the snow melt, Dorchester residents were up-in-arms about the conditions of their streets. Rightfully so. In March, we heard reports of cars getting stuck on heavily traveled corridors. That's unacceptable.

But opponents of paving promised things would get better with warmer weather and that our muddy roads would become a distant memory. They were wrong.

The Times has already given our ten good reasons to put the paving issue on the general election ballot. We strongly urge the village board to let the residents of Dorchester decide on the paving issue this fall. Even when presented with several other project choices, more than half (52%) of Times readers want paved streets more than any other town improvement, according to a recent Times poll.

But if words aren't enough, let pictures do the talking.

For those who didn't have the pleasure of driving on Dorchester streets this past holiday weekend, below is what residents and out-of-town guests had to contend with. Once again, cars were getting stuck on our village streets -- in July!

As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. (Click on photos for a closer view.)

Monday, July 5, 2010

Dorchester Youth Football Camp, July 13 & 14

Ready or not, football season is just around the corner. Once again, the DHS coaching staff is offering young players in the Dorchester area a chance to learn the basics of the game.

On July 13 and 14, DHS football coaches Ryan Voelker and Brent Zoubek will hold the Dorchester Area Youth Football Camp for boys entering grades 3 through 8. The camp will be held 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. both nights. Cost is $15 per player.

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 the great game offers." Out-of-town boys are welcome, as well, to take advantage of this great learning opportunity.

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, contact Brent Zoubek at (402) 418-1019 or Ryan Voelker at (402) 416-8058.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Dorchester's Fourth Celebration Offers Full Day Of Activities

Anyone from the area can attest that Dorchester has one of the very best small-community July 4th celebrations in the region. Residents and visitors alike will find plenty of things to do in Dorchester, without the crowds of Seward or Lincoln. Of course, the highlight of the day comes after dark with the famous fireworks show, which has been pleasing crowds for 16 years. This year's celebration, set for Sunday, is sure to be another crowd pleaser. Highlights will include:

Church services at city park ........ 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Raffles, pie and ice cream, Legion Hall ........... 11 a.m.

Sons of the American Legion pork feed .......... 11 a.m.-7 p.m.

Saline County Museum open .......... noon to 6 p.m.

Tractor/car show on main street ............. 1 p.m.

Bingo at community building .......... 2:30 p.m.

Parade ................ 7 p.m.

Fireworks .............. 10 p.m.

For more information on the events and schedule, call Steven Ottmann at (402) 946-4821. Becuase Dorchester's first-class Fourth celebration depends on private support, area residents and friends of Dorchester are encouraged to send their donations to:

First State Bank
4th of July Celebration
P.O. Box 264
Dorchester, NE 68343

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Unwanted Geese From Omaha Shipped To Saline Co.

In recent years, Canada Geese populations have exploded, so much so that many consider them pests (for their droppings, the bacteria in their droppings, noise and confrontational behavior). This problem is partially due to the removal of natural predators and an abundance of safe, man-made bodies of water -- as well as restrictive rules on hunting.

Now Omaha doesn't want the messy birds, so they are shipping here to Saline County.

WOWT-TV in Omaha reports that Nebraska State Game and Parks staffers recently rounded up gosling and female geese at Lake Candlewood in West Omaha. Game and Parks said about 30 gosling or young geese have been transplanted to a wildlife area in Saline County.

The Candlewood Homeowners Association requested the state remove the flock. In an e-mail to the neighborhood, the association representative said an adult goose could leave a pound of dropping each day which damages lawns and increases bacteria.

One overly sensitive Omaha resident was nearly in tears over the move. Joan Pistillo told the TV station: “It just makes me ill because I don’t know if they’re dead or where they took them. ... I couldn't tell my three grandkids what happened to the geese because they loved them as much as we did.”

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Dorchester Street Dance Set For July 3

As noted by our readers, for the first time in several years, Dorchester's main street will be the stage for a top-notch street dance.

The Dorchester Volunteer Fire & Rescue Street Dance is set for Saturday, July 3. The event will start at 8 p.m. and last until midnight.

The street dance will feature live entertainment from The Shelia Greenwood Band, as well as beverages and plenty of food provided by local organizations.

If you are on Facebook, you can indicate whether you plan to attend by going by clicking here.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Dorchester Man Sentenced For Stealing Metal

The news wires are reporting the following:

"Two brothers have been given three years of probation, delayed sentences of six months in Lancaster County jail and told to make restitution of $5,850 each for stealing scrap metal."

Ricky Scdoris, 53, of Lincoln was sentenced on Monday. He and his brother, John, 52, of Dorchester, "were arrested in October and accused of stealing scrap metal from Ricky’s employer, Alter Scrap. ... Investigators say Ricky had been giving some of the metal to his brother, who would sell it at another scrap yard. ... John Scdoris was sentenced last week."

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Dustin Nelson Is Area's Newest Master Angler

Dorchester resident Dustin Nelson, age 11, is our area's latest Master Angler.

Dustin recently reeled in a flathead catfish -- also called yellow cats. The catfish was caught at an area lake (Dustin isn't giving us his secret spot) and weighed in at 18 lbs., 6 oz. It measured 34".

The catch qualifies him for the prestigious sportsman award.

The Nebraska record for a flathead is 80 lbs. The Times has learned Dustin already has plans on how to land an 81 pounder.

Dustin's whopper was released after it was weighed and measured. Dustin said he hopes someone else can have the excitement of catching this granddaddy.

The Times congratulates Dustin on his catch and deserved accolades.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

EDITORIAL: Fremont Voters Do The Job The Feds Won't

On Monday, the voters of Fremont overwhelmingly approved a new ordinance to crack down on illegal immigration. By nearly a 60%-40% margin, Fremont residents enacted new code to prohibit the hiring of illegal aliens and to make it a crime to rent housing to such individuals.

The mainstream media and some civil liberty groups see this move as highly controversial. They need to consult Webster's Dictionary and read the definition of "illegal."

The voters of Fremont sent a strong message by proving real change happens at the local level, not DC. Moreover, they showed they are willing to do the job that the federal government won't; that is, enforce existing immigration law. In short, Fremont demonstrated intestinal fortitude, especially considering the threat of costly, baseless lawsuits from left-leaning organizations such as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), a group that has devolved into the country's most anti-American organization -- all in the name of finding more work for its liberal lawyers.

We have heard from at least one candidate for Dorchester village board that our community should consider a measure similar to that of Fremont's. We agree. Dorchester residents should have the opportunity to vote on such a proposal, especially considering the challenges now facing nearby Crete.

As President Obama often says, make no mistake: immigrants continue to add great value to the fabric of our nation. Any low brow can repeat the line that we are a nation of immigrants. The questions that must be asked to critics of the Fremont ordinance and Arizona law are: What is your agenda? Why do you want our government officials to ignore our laws and borders?

Common sense says the United States can neither afford nor accommodate all of the third world's impoverished and unskilled. Over the past decade, illegal immigrants have drained our taxpayer resources, taken American jobs, added to the welfare rolls, stressed our education system, sent most their wages back to their homelands, and reversed America's melting pot by refusing to assimilate.

Fremont voters did the right thing yesterday. Bring on the lawsuits.

OPEN FORUM: June 2010

The Times' Open Forum gives our readers their chance to say something, report breaking news, fire off a complaint, praise a fellow area resident, or simply ask a question. Any topic is fair game, although the Times' comment policy still applies. Keep it clean; keep it civil. (Please see the bottom of the left-hand column.)

The Times is the perfect forum to air your thoughts, news tips, announcements, complaints and concerns. With hundreds visiting this site each day, your comment will get noticed.

The Open Forum is also a great place to find out what old friends are up to, get advice, share and find information, and let the Times' staff know what you'd like to see on this community Web site.

Go ahead and sound off. We are listening. And so are hundreds of others.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Facebook Users Are Fans Of Dorchester

The Times has learned from several of our loyal readers that Dorchester is on Facebook. Members of the social networking website can become fans of our community.

The Dorchester Facebook page contains plenty of information on the village and its residents. According to the Facebook page, there were 248 households in Dorchester's village limits in the 2000 census. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 2.88.

Dorchester's population was spread out with 24.9% under the age of 18, 7.8% from 18 to 24, 28.6% from 25 to 44, 20.5% from 45 to 64, and 18.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years.

You can become a fan of Dorchester on Facebook by clicking here.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Charity Bike Ride Coming Through Dorchester

Dorchester will serve as a stop for a large benefit bike ride for the world hunger projects of the Nebraska United Methodist Church, the Times has learned.

NUMB stands for Nebraska United Methodist Bike Ride for Hunger. All told, the project has contributed more than $410,000 to alleviate hunger all around the world since the first ride in 1996. NUMB benefits the hungry in Nebraska and around the world and is sponsored by the Nebraska Annual Conference Board of Mission Outreach Hunger Committee.

This year, the riders will cover about 300 miles. Dorchester United Methodist Church will host what is called a SAG (service and gear) stop on Tuesday, June 29, in front of the American Legion building. This stop provides the 140 riders with some water and food to help sustain them on their ride.

All area residents are invited to help cheer the riders into town. For more information, contact Rhonda Schlick at (402) 946-2143.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Dorchester's Public Image, Part II

In 2007, shortly after this blog first started publishing, the Associated Press ran a story on the increase in the construction of large grain silos due to the formerly booming ethanol industry. AP stories appear across the state and country, in newspapers that reach millions of Americans. Set in Dorchester, the 2007 silo story opened with the following:

"DORCHESTER, Neb. -- Outside of two bars and a bank there’s little activity on Washington Street here, where more windows are covered by boards than 'Open' signs. But at the end of the street, semi-trailers stir the dust near a concrete symbol of economic activity. It towers over the signs of small-town decay ...

Back then, the Times wrote that we believe the story served as a good reminder why Dorchester must make improvements to enhance our public image. As we wrote, public image does matter. After all, it is what attracts growth or expedites decline in a community.

We ask readers to consider all the positive developments in Dorchester over the past few years: a new school, new businesses, repairs along Main Street, a beautified city park, a new concession stand and football field entrance, and many home improvements throughout town.

Dorchester has a lot going for it. So is it fair to the majority of Dorchester residents that some homeowners and property owners around town are allowed to keep their real estate in disorder and disrepair?

Our town seems to have more than its fair share of negligent property owners. From the feedback we have received from fellow residents, it seems that taxpayer unrest is reaching a boiling point.

Perhaps it is time for a thorough scrubbing of the village ordinances. Also, community members should be asking themselves:
  • Why isn't some type of action being taken against owners who have junk vehicles on their property?
  • Does Dorchester need a committee on blighted property?
  • Is there enough interest that current residents and former residents or school alumni might contribute to a clean-up fund to remedy neglected properties?

Thursday, June 10, 2010

$2,500 Grant Available From Monsanto

The Monsanto Fund wants to make a contribution to local communities as part of the America’s Farmers Grow Communities Project. One non-profit community organization in Saline county will receive $2,500. Area farmers are being asked to submit their nominations.

The nomination process is simple. Just click here and sign up. Then click on the “Apply Now” button and the nomination should take no longer than a few minutes. It is a simple form, and the nomination process is finished by July 31; the sooner applications are completed, the better the odds that a Dorchester area non-profit might benefit. One winner in each county will be selected by a third party in September.

See more information at or call 1-877-267-3332. Remember, the deadline for nominations is July 31.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

It's Summertime: Share Your Photos With Times' Readers

Summer is here and the Times hopes will area residents will share your pictures or videos with our readers. All you need is a digital camera or mobile phone.

If you find yourself with a front-row view of some major event, community gathering, sporting contest, severe weather, a beautiful sunset, or you are just strolling down Dorchester's streets, take a picture or video and share the experience with fellow Times' readers. We will select the best and use them in a future post.

Here's all you have to do:

1. Take the photograph or video with any picture-enabled mobile phone or digital camera.
3. Include your name and a brief description in the message field.

Please remember that by submitting your video(s) or photograph(s) you confirm that you agree to grant the Dorchester Times a perpetual, royalty-free right to use your images and make them available to the public. You grant to the Times the right to edit and/or modify your material in any manner necessary in order to have the material comply with our formatting or publication needs. You further agree to indemnify and release the Times of any and all liabilities for any claims, charges, injuries, losses or damages of any kind caused by, resulting from or arising out of your submission or the Times' use of the image(s).

Now, with the legal terms out of the way, please submit your material. Fellow readers anxiously await to see your work.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Help Plan Dorchester's 4th Of July Celebration

Dorchester is widely recognized for having one of southeast Nebraska's best Fourth of July celebrations. Now you can play a part in planning for the big day.

The Dorchester Fourth of July Planning Committee will meet again tonight, June 7, at 7:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at the Dorchester Community Building.

Your input is wanted. All area residents are invited and encouraged to take part in this important planning session. Plan on attending tonight's meeting and help our community host its best Independence Day celebration yet! (UPDATE: According to several e-mails sent to the Times, street dances may be returning to Dorchester's Main Street. A large street dance is tentatively planned for Saturday, July 3, according the communications.)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Wind Turbines Coming To Saline County?

A June 2 story in the Lincoln Journal Star reports that a grassroots group called the Saline County Wind Association is now up to 240 members. Yesterday, Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman even stopped by Saline Center Hall south of town to address the organization.

"I want to see us accelerate wind energy development in the state," Gov. Dave Heineman told more than 125. "It's all about jobs."

Nebraska ranks 22nd in wind energy development nationally. Heineman said he wants it in the top five or top 10 by 2020.

The Journal Star writes that Roger Belohlavy, a member of the association's board, said Saline County has good wind resources, two major power transmission lines and few center pivot irrigation systems to hamper placement and construction of wind turbines, and it is close to Lincoln and Omaha, the state's biggest electrical users. Nearly 100 landowners in Saline County have signed easement option agreements for more than 22,000 acres.

Wind energy developers are targeting six townships in the county that appear to have the greatest potential: Atlanta, Brush Creek, Monroe, North Fork, Pleasant Hill and Turkey Creek. Bob Mariska, 91, an association member from Pleasant Hill, said he visited a wind farm near Concordia, Kan., as part of a tour and liked what he saw. "They're thicker than a hair on a dog," he said. Harold Krivohlavek, 88, a landowner who has signed an easement option agreement, believes a wind project will be built in Saline County, but said: "I don't think I will live that long to see it."

Friday, May 28, 2010

Havlat Memorial Dedication Set For This Sunday Afternoon

This Sunday, May 30, the Dorchester Area Community Foundation (DACF) will host a dedication ceremony for the Havlat memorial marker. The event will begin at 1:30 p.m. at the Saline County Museum on the south side of town. (UPDATE: To see the Lincoln Journal Star's story on Private Havlat, click here.)

Speaking at the ceremony will be state Sen. Russ Karpisek of Wilber and Adolph Havlat (Private Havlat’s brother). The museum will be open Sunday afternoon and all area residents are encouraged to attend. This is a proper way to remember those who gave all.

A Dorchester native who died May 7, 1945, while helping to free a monastery in Czechoslovakia, Private Charles Havlat was the last soldier killed in the European Theater of World War II. Private Havlat's death occurred about six hours after the unconditional surrender of the Germans. For more on Private Havlat, click here.

In 2008, the Dorchester American Legion, Post 264, asked the State of Nebraska and the roads department to name the small stretch of Highway 33 between Dorchester and Crete after PFC Havlat, but the request was denied. The Dorchester Legion and the DACF worked to raise funds and place the historical marker on the grounds of the Saline County Museum. The project cost approximately $5,000.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Times Wants Your Suggestions

Have you ever wished the Dorchester Times would do things differently? Here is your chance to tell us what we are doing wrong -- and how we can fix it -- or what we are doing right.

Please take a minute and click on the "comments" link at the end of this post and give us some recommendations on how we can improve this website. We know you all have opinions, so don't be shy.

Also, the Times is constantly looking for community reporters. You can always send us news reports, pictures and other items to our permanent e-mail address:

We look forward to hearing your creative ideas and helpful suggestions.