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