Thursday, January 30, 2014

Dorchester's Annual Farm Machinery Auction, Feb. 5

Attention area farmers.  Wednesday, Feb. 5, will bring Dorchester's annual farm machinery consignment auction, administered by Novak Auction Service of Dorchester.

The auction will begin promptly at 9:30 a.m.  Location is two miles east of Dorchester on County Road 1600.

According to Novak Auction Service, there will be multiple auction rings running simultaneously.

There will be food and refreshments on site, sold by Mrs. G's Country Cooking.

For those who have equipment or other items to sell, consignments are being accepted up until Feb. 4.

Tractors will be available for unloading beginning Feb. 1.

For more details, including the long list of items up for auction, click here.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Dorchester's Joe Wade, 65, Passes

Joe Keith Wade, 65, of Dorchester, passed away on Sunday, January 26, 2014. 

Joe was born on May 8, 1948 in Weeping Water to Donald K. Wade and Betty L. (King) Wade.  He enjoyed driving truck, racing and spending time with his family.

Joe is survived by his longtime companion Connie Thompson of Dorchester; his daughters (spouses) Michelle (Paul) Grandgenett of Omaha & Monica (Chad) Rut of Dorchester; his brother Rick Wade of Lincoln; Grandchildren, Michael Wade, Emma and Cole Grandgenett and Joshua Thompson; Connie's son Craig Thompson; Great Aunts Barb Kuwitzsky and Ramona Ruhge both of Lincoln and many cousins. Joe was preceded in death by his parents.

Funeral Service will be 10 a.m. Thursday at Butherus, Maser & Love Funeral Home, 4040 A Street, Lincoln. Visitation will be from 1–9 p.m. Wednesday.  Family will be present from 5–7 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home to greet friends & family. Interment will be in the Dorchester Cemetery. 

Click here for the obituary and to leave your notes of sympathy.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Happy 80th Birthday To Betty Kliment

Betty Kliment
Happy birthday wishes are in order.

A birthday greeting appeared in Sunday's Lincoln Journal Star and its special announcement insert.  

Dorchester's Betty Kliment turned 80 years young this month.

"Happy birthday to a wonderful wife, mom, grandma and great-grandma," the announcement read.

Please help her celebrate by sending a card to:

Betty Kliment
P.O. Box 111
Dorchester, NE 68343.

Grants Available That Could Help Your Dorchester Area Business Grow

Do you own or work for a business in Dorchester or the surrounding area? Could your business use some extra financial help to grow its operation?

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Development office is overseeing the grants that can be used in several ways.

Last year, four grants worth a total of $170,000 were awarded in Nebraska as part of the program. 

Grants are only available to businesses in areas with less than 50,000 population. Applications are due by Feb. 24. 

More details are available online here.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Dorchester Welcome Sign Nears Completion; Second Will Be In Place Soon

You are always welcome in Dorchester.  But now we have the welcome signs to prove it.

The latest improvement to our community -- spearheaded by the Dorchester Community Foundation -- is the town's welcome signs.  The first sign (pictured), on Highway 33 on the south side of town, is nearly complete. That welcome sign rests on the west edge of the Saline County Museum’s property.   

A second sign will soon be erected on the west side of Highways 6/15 near the access spur north of town.  

Both signs will mirror Dorchester's modern logo as painted on the village's new water tower.  Dorchester’s new logo ushers in the new era of progress in our community, many have told us.

The welcome signs are substantial in size, measuring about 8 feet tall and 20 feet wide.  Plans are to have them lighted, as well.  

One area resident from Crete who saw the sign for the first time said: "Classy. Very classy."

The Dorchester Community Foundation secured funding for the signs through donations.  We are told that approximately $16,000 was raised to complete this important project, which reflects tremendous community pride. 

The Dorchester Community Foundation's Welcome Sign Committee was comprised of the following Foundation members:  Mike Pracheil, Eric Stehlik, Carol Olson, Linda Easley and Dale Hayek.  Dorchester residents send our thanks to these community leaders.

High Schoolers: Win Art Contest And A Trip To Washington, DC

U.S. Representative Adrian Smith is encouraging high school students in Nebraska's Third Congressional District to turn in artwork by March 2 for the 2014 Congressional Art Competition. 

The winner will have their art work on display in the Nation's Capitol and receive two round-trip plane tickets to Washington D.C. to participate in recognition ceremonies there. 

The winner will also be recognized on April 23. 

Artwork must be two-dimensional and up to 28" x 28" x 4," including the frame and not more than 15 lbs.

The Nebraska Art Teachers Association is working with Rep. Smith to coordinate the 2014 competition.

Official rules, guidelines and submission forms are available online. Just click here.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Dorchester's Ben's Iron Grill 2 Is Getting Rave Reviews

Ben's Iron Grill is back -- and it's better than ever!

Ben's Iron Grill 2, under the operation of new owner Roger Clark, was officially formed back in mid-December. 

The restaurant is still at 708 Washington in Dorchester. 

Early reviews from area customers are outstanding, with many folks saying that the revamped restaurant is impressive and establishing high standards for local dining.  

The restaurant has received superior marks in customer satisfaction and for its family-friendly orientation. 

In case you haven't seen Ben's 2 Facebook page yet, you should check it out here

See you at Ben's soon!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Check Out This Available Home In Dorchester Today

Dorchester has a lot going for it.  

One high profile state leader recently sent the Times an e-mail to commend our community for all it has done.  Let's put it this way -- Dorchester is getting noticed for all the right reasons.

Just consider what Dorchester has to offer:
  • A brand new K-12 school.
  • A clean, peaceful and safe community.
  • A new water system and new sewer system.
  • The lowest school tax levy in the county -- and one of the lower property rates in southeast Nebraska.
  • Affordable cost of living.
  • One of the largest agri-businesses in the state.
  • Friendly, helpful neighbors.
  • A 10 minute drive from many employers in Crete and Seward. And only 30 minutes to job opportunities in Lincoln. Located next to two highways and minutes from Interstate 80.
However, one challenge facing Dorchester is available housing.  Since the Dorchester Times has been in operation, we've heard from many readers who've said they would like to move to Dorchester, if only homes were available.

Today, we are showcasing the latest Dorchester home available right now.  If you're ready to call Dorchester home, we encourage you to take a look and make an offer.  Make Dorchester your home and grow with this standout community.

302 E 7Th St.: Come view this 5 bedroom, 3 bathroom home that has so many improvements. Updates in 2006 are: New foundation with finished basement that includes a family room, bedroom, 3/4 bath and store room. Most windows were replaced, sewer/water lines replaced from house to street and interior plumbing. In 2010 the roof, furnace, and water heater were replaced. Beautiful original wood floors, oversized covered porch that sits on a large corner lot. Click here.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Saline Co. Sees 8.3% Property Tax Hike In One Year: Report

Today, Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman issued a statement on the local property tax increases experienced in most of Nebraska's 93 counties. The Nebraska Department of Revenue reports that when combining data from all Nebraska counties, total property taxes statewide increased 5.22% from 2012 to 2013.

In Saline County, our property taxes increased 8.28% from 2012 to 2013.  That's 37th highest out of Nebraska's 93 counties.  During that same time span, Saline County saw a 10% increase in the percentage of total property value -- so at least property taxes didn't soar beyond the 10% mark, as they did in 25 other Nebraska counties.

Before you contact your state senator, remember: In Nebraska, property tax rates are set by local governments.  Property taxes pay for schools (about 70% of your property tax dollar goes to the school district); county government; city government; community colleges; NRDs; and other local government bodies.  Even the county historical society gets a share.

Here's what the governor said:

"The latest property tax report shows property taxes are increasing because local government spending is increasing too rapidly. The Department of Revenue property tax report indicates property taxes increased by more than 5% in 70 counties. ... As I said in my State of the State address, we need our partners in local government to slow the rate of growth in local spending to achieve real property tax relief."

See the full report of county property tax increases here.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

So You Want To Start A Business In Dorchester?

Dorchester and the surrounding area are home to dozens of small businesses -- all looking for ways to grow and expand their customer base. Meanwhile, we continue to hear from individuals who are currently looking to start their own business in our community.

Recently, we searched a number of websites and publications dedicated to entrepreneurs and small businesses. We found several common themes that need to be considered by those who want to start their own operation in a small town, as well as those who are already in business.  
Here are some key tips:

  • Talk to others who have opened businesses recently. What challenges have they faced? What works and what does not? What appeals to community members and what does not?
  • If nobody has opened a business for awhile, dig deeper. Maybe there is no market. Or maybe they're just waiting for you to arrive. Sometimes a new business can generate demand. It's a judgment call.
  • Make a great first impression. Promotion isn't hard in a small town. Ten minutes after you've opened, everyone will know. Your first impression will linger a long time -- good or bad.
  • Uncover the town's market and memory. Considering buying a business? Take time to discover the owner's reputation. If someone has just moved away and everyone misses them, a wonderful opportunity exists.
  • Be sensitive to change and trends. In years gone by, coffee shops may have failed often. These days, they seem to be thriving.
  • Search the fine print of local regulations. For example, any time you serve food or drink, you know you're facing permits. Find out what's involved locally.
  • Prepare to do most of the work yourself. In a small town, you can have trouble finding good help. The local work ethic may surprise you -- in either direction.
  • Know your community. Enough said.
  • Build relationships. If you can attract a town leader, you'll draw a following. Conversely, if you inadvertently alienate a key player, you'll be miserable. And in a small town, business owners are expected to be super citizens. Choose alliances and sponsorships carefully. Prepare for all sorts of friendly requests to donate time, materials and money

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Sneak Peak: Pepsi's Super Bowl Celebration In Milligan

A couple of weekends ago, throngs of Saline County residents traveled to Milligan to get their free Pepsi and listen to country star Lee Brice during his surprise concert. 

It's estimated that approximately 3,000 people attended the frigid event.

TV crews filmed the celebration for Pepsi's upcoming Super Bowl XLVIII halftime event.  Pepsi machines and Pepsi banners were all over Milligan, which was supposedly selected due to its proximity half-way between Los Angeles and New York City. 

Now, right here on the Dorchester Times, you can get an exclusive look at the “Get Hyped for Halftime” segment filmed in Milligan.  We think area residents will be impressed, even if Milligan is portrayed as the "town where nothing exciting happens."

To see the wonderful Milligan celebration and Pepsi promo spot, just click here.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

OUR OPINION: Dorchester School Board Votes To Keep DHS B-Ball Teams

Last night, the Dorchester School Board took steps to make things right again.

Before a very large, civil and polite crowd of school district patrons, the board unanimously decided to withdraw its previous request to Milford High School to merge with DHS' boys and girls basketball teams.

The board voted the way the overwhelming majority of their constituents wanted.  That is how a representative democracy is supposed to work.

But more importantly, the board voted with its heart.

Yes, issues will remain regarding DHS' low student athlete participation rates.  That's what caused the school board to explore the basketball merger in the first place. 

But now the burden to ensure adequate team numbers falls on the students, the coaches, the parents and the community.  The answer lies not in a sports merger -- it lies in students being leaders, parents being mentors, community members being supportive fans.  That's how you get more of our young people involved in athletics or any other extracuricular activity.

For Dorchester pride, Dorchester history, and Dorchester's future, let's rally around our teams and school.  Let's stand stronger than ever as one community.
Go Longhorns.

Monday, January 13, 2014

DHS Basketball Teams Prepare For Rival Bulldogs

Riley Zahourek vs Sterling
Dorchester's boys and girls basketball ball teams are busy preparing for Tuesday's match-up with next door rival Friend.

The Longhorns will host the Bulldogs on Tuesday, Jan. 14, with the girls tipping off at 6:15 p.m. and the boys at 8 p.m.  There will also be a JV girls contest beginning at 4:30 p.m.

The Longhorn boys basketball team has continued to improve over the last couple of weeks, as the squad now sports a 3-5 record.  The DHS boys fell to Sterling 60-41 on Dec. 30 and to Lincoln's College View 40-36 on Tuesday.  But DHS defeated St. Edward 69-47 on Jan. 4.

Longhorn boys Coach Adrian Allen told the Friend Sentinel -- which provides good coverage of the DHS team -- his team has been playing well at times, but still needs to improve, especially on defense.  Riley Zahourek continues to be a top scorer for DHS, which is also getting very solid play from standouts Corey Bird, Kevin Donohoe and Derek Pohl.

Meanwhile, the Friend Lady Bulldogs will have a tougher hurdle at Dorchester than they may have been counting on a month ago.  The surging Lady Longhorns are now 3-6, as the young DHS team has won two consecutive games, beating  St. Edward 37-30 on Jan. 4 and pounding College View 41-13 this week.

We expect a large crowd for this home contest next Tuesday.

Crowd Expected At Monday's DPS Board Meeting; Fate Of Ball Teams Lingers

DHS boys basketball team, 1956-57

The proposed merger of the Dorchester and Milford high school basketball teams is getting a second look.

public meeting by the Dorcheter School Board has been set for this evening, Jan. 13, and it is expected the basketball merger will be revisited.  There is some speculation that a school board member will make a motion to reconsider action taken last month.  

The public is encouraged to attend the 7 p.m. meeting at the school.

In December, the Dorchester Public School Board voted to ask Milford Public Schools to consider permitting a two-year co-op arrangement for girls and boys basketball, similar to what has already been done for football and wrestling. DPS school board members said the vote was hurried due to pending schedules for the 2014-15 basketball season.

A howl of protest followed the move.  An online survey conducted by the Dorchester Times found that of 100 respondents, more than 90% said the school board should rescind its December vote because they want to keep the basketball teams in Dorchester.

A large number of parents and perhaps current DHS basketball players are expected to attend Monday's meeting.

And based on the conversation heard within the school district, it won't just be parents of DPS students who will be attending the school board meeting.
DHS girls basketball team, 1976-77

Several members of the community said there is much concern over the proposed merger among district taxpayers who do not have children, or whose children graduated years ago.  

One rural reader, who children graduated from DHS in the 1980s, e-mailed the Times to say many retirees or near-retirees "worry that busing students to Milford unnecessarily is a waste of precious tax dollars" and "at a time when property taxes are already too high."

She continued by writing, "Busing kids for sports has nothing to do with Nebraska's constitutional guarantee to provide an education.  It sounds like some have limousine tastes despite a Yugo budget. It's not just current parents who pay taxes."

With that, dear readers, we leave you with a quote from Oprah Winfrey:

"Try to take every conflict, every experience, and learn from it. Life is never dull."

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Dorchester Times Records More Than 2,000 Hits In 24 Hours

We have reached a new milestone.

Today, January 12, the Dorchester Times recorded more than 2,000 hits (page views) in a 24-hour span ending at 6 p.m.  This would be a notable feat for most any blog, much less one that keeps up with the news and events in a small community of around 600 people. 

In April 2007, the Dorchester Times went online for the first time.  At the time, the people who created the website -- none of whom are still with the Times' staff -- said their mission was to fill the void of communication between the area's residents, while updating former Dorchester area residents who no longer reside here. 

Over nearly seven years (minus a little time off in 2011), the Times has published news stories, event notices, taken polls, addressed important community issues and -- most importantly -- encouraged area residents to start becoming more engaged in their town and the quality of life it provides.  

Since 2007, the Times has recorded more than 1 million page views. The site is averaging more than 18,335 hits a month as of today.

While new venues have emerged over the years, such as Facebook and Twitter, our readers have stayed with us.  And Dorchester is better as a result.

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

Friday, January 10, 2014

We've Ordered More Dorchester Bumper Stickers!

(UPDATE:  Our second supply of Dorchester stickers is gone!)

You loved these Dorchester bumper stickers, so our local printer has made more!

On New Year's Day, the Times offered readers these newly designed Dorchester bumper stickers, as pictured here.  But within a couple of days, our supply had been exhausted.  

One of our readers -- "David the Bohunk" -- wrote:  "Received mine today. They're pretty cool. Wish my car looked as good as the bumper sticker."

We sent stickers to readers in Dorchester, Crete, Wilber, Friend, Lincoln, Adams, Omaha and 14 states other than Nebraska.  

If you missed an opportunity to get your free Dorchester sticker the first time around, here's a second chance.  No charge for shipping or the sticker.  In return, we only ask that you apply these fantastic stickers on your automobile or somewhere else where they can be seen by many.  

To get your free Dorchester bumper sticker, send your name and mailing address to:  In the subject line, please type "bumper sticker."  

This offer is good until our new supply runs out.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Nearby Silo Collapses, Spills 2M Bushels Of Corn

Fairmont grain elevatorWhat a mess 2 million bushels of spilled corn can make.  That's what our neighbors west of here, in Fairmont, have discovered firsthand.

In case you haven't yet heard, a corner of a new grain silo in Fairmont collapsed Tuesday afternoon.

The Lincoln Journal Star covered the story.  They quote Fairmont Volunteer Fire Dept. Chief Jeff Neiman as saying: “Well, it’s quite a mess. There were guys pretty close to the structure and they heard it rumble and they peeled out of there as quick as they could.”

Nobody was injured in the collapse, according to media reports. 

The collapse happened just before 5 p.m. Tuesday evening. Neiman and another firefighter went to make sure nobody was buried.

The elevator, opened eight months ago, can store 2 million bushels of grain in eight 150-foot silos.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

POLL RESULTS: 91% Want Basketball Teams To Stay In Dorchester

As of 5 p.m. Tuesday, 100 readers had taken the Times lastest online survey.  And the results are clear cut.

Exactly 91% of respondents said they wanted to keep the basketball teams in Dorchester; the remaining 9% were split between combining basketball teams with Milford (4 votes) or combining basketball teams with another school (5 votes).  

In December, the Dorchester Public School Board, somewhat unexpectedly and in expedited fashion, voted to ask Milford Public Schools allow a two-year co-op arrangement for girls and boys basketball. 

Nearly 90% of readers (88.66%) said the school board should rescind its December vote to merge basketball teams. 

A couple of weeks ago, this blog offered our opinion, writing that merging both basketball teams with Milford (or any other school) is unnecessary and unwise.  And we cited several reasons the school board should reconsider its decision. (See our editorial by clicking here.)

While this poll is unscientific, we did ask that only readers residing in the Dorchester school district (District No. 44) and/or who pay property taxes in the school district participate in the survey.  The survey closed at 5 p.m.

Here is a summary of the results:

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Dorchester's Robert Kliment Passes At 74

Kliment, RobertDorchester's Robert Kliment, 74, passed away Jan. 1, 2014.  

Funeral services were at 11 a.m. today, Jan. 4, at Kuncl Funeral Home in Crete. 

Interment was at the Dorchester Cemetery.  

No other details are available at this time.

Memorials may be sent in care of the family. Condolences may be left at

Help Requested For Dorchester Native And Her Family

David City fire
A fire in David City, Neb. on Christmas Eve destroyed the home of Dorchester native (Schlamann) and her children, Mikayla and David.  Elizabeth is the daughter of Jerry and Nancy Schlamann of Dorchester.

Her home was completely destroyed, along with all of the family's contents. They have received help from the Red Cross and the Ministerial Association of David City. 

Currently, the family is living in a furnished home. However, donations of furniture, clothing and other household items would help them get back on their feet. 

If you would like to donate any items -- or financial help -- please send to Jerry/Nancy Schlamann, P.O. Box 61, 908 Washington, Dorchester, NE 68343.  A donation account has been set up at Union Bank and Trust Co., David City branch, if you choose to donate directly.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Superbowl Ad To Be Filmed In Our Area; Grammy-Winning Artist To Perform

Pepsi comes to Milligan
The Friend Sentinel is reporting Pepsi is preparing to shoot a commercial in Milligan.  (UPDATE: See other media stories here. And read about the Lee Brice concert here.)

The spot will be aired during the XLVIII Super Bowl broadcast.

Filming crews are already in Milligan, which is 25 minutes west-southwest of Dorchester. They have set up Pepsi machines and banners in town. 

According to the story published in the Sentinel, Pepsi officials said the reason they're shooting the ad in Milligan is because the community is half-way between LA and New York City.  (Hey, we thought Dorchester claimed that geographical honor.)

There will be a live concert outside of Evening With Friends at 6:30 p.m. tomorrow, Jan. 4. There also may be something after the concert as well.  

It has not been confirmed who will be performing at the concert, but news reports say it is a Grammy-Award-winning artist or group.  We just hope they brought their cold-weather clothes.  The temperature is expect to drop to 15 degrees by 6:30 p.m. Saturday, with Sunday's high reaching a balmy 12 degrees.

Give To The Dorchester Community Foundation Today

Do you want to make Dorchester an even better place? 

If one of your new year's resolutions is to improve the lives of your neighbors, why not join the Dorchester Community Foundation?

The Foundation and its fund have already spurred several community improvements, such as the city park renovation and the new "Welcome to Dorchester" signs, which are currently being erected.

You don't need to reside in Dorchester or even nearby to be a member of the Foundation.  This is a wonderful opportunity for Dorchester natives and DHS alumni to give back to the community that gave them a great start in life.  

Why not ensure that today's young people in Dorchester get the same great start you did? 

For information on joining the Foundation, contact Carol Olson ( or Dale Hayek ( 

Membership is open to all.  Dues are $20 annually or $250 lifetime. Make checks payable to: Dorchester Community Foundation Fund, c/o Peg Bergmeyer, 101 Washington, Dorchester, NE 68343.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Historic Dorchester Home Still For Sale

Every now and again, one of Dorchester's truly unique, standout homes becomes available for purchase. That is the case currently with the Fermin Rediger home, located at the northwest corner of W. 11th and Franklin Ave. 

This home has been a showcase house since it was built at the turn of last century.  Best of all, it has always been very well maintained and has no issues, unlike some other historic homes.  

This home has been on the market for more than six months.  Frankly, we're extremely surprised it hasn't yet been sold, especially considering this is an amazing home that would be worth more than $300,000 in Lincoln or Omaha.  Moreover, an owner could rent one of the floors and make the rent pay the mortgage.

The home has features you won't find with today's cookie-cutter, slapped-up-in-a-week modern houses.  A wrap-around main porch on the second story. Pillars.  A garden concrete pond. Huge front patio.  Flower beds.  Brick landscaping.  A large lot with lots of privacy.

Added bonuses are the three large bedrooms and additional bath. The home also has vinyl siding, some replacement windows, new roof, new furnace and main floor central air. The property also has a garage and two storage sheds. 

The last we heard, the home has a $95,000 price tag -- which is just plain ridiculous, in our opinion. That's a bargain for such a grand residence.

Click here for more details on this amazing home and its listing.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Get Your Free Dorchester Bumper Sticker From The Times

(UPDATE: Our supply of Dorchester bumper stickers has been exhausted.  We gave stickers away to readers in Dorchester, Crete, Wilber, Friend, Lincoln, Adams, Omaha and 14 states other than Nebraska.  Enjoy!)  It's 2014! Start the new year the right way by displaying your Dorchester pride.

The Dorchester Times is offering our loyal readers these newly designed Dorchester bumper stickers, as pictured here.  And they're absolutely free.  

In return, we only ask that you apply these fantastic stickers on your automobile or somewhere else where they can be seen by many.  

To get your free Dorchester bumper sticker, send your full name and mailing address to:  In the subject line, please type "bumper sticker."  

This offer is limited until supplies run out.

One sticker per household, please.  Allow one to two weeks for delivery.  Hurry! Offer ends January 7, 2014.