Blair High School Class of 2019

Family and friends filled the Blair High School gymnasium Sunday, May 19 to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of the Blair High School Class of 2019.
Blair Community Schools Superintendant Randall Gilson commended the class members for their many accomplishments in academics, athletics fine arts and extra -curricular activities.  He then told the graduates that they are entering a world of unprecedented challenges, but the class of 2019 has the ability to deliver the hard to find solutions.
“Class of 2019, we’re counting on your enthusiasm to pursue your passion and change the world”

Washington County athletes compete in State Track and Field Championships

Blair, Fort Calhoun and Arlington track teams qualified 27 athletes for State Track and Field Championship competition at Omaha Burke Stadium on Friday and Saturday, May  17 and 18.  Fort Calhoun runners Zack Marshall and Taya Skelton earned state track gold.  Arlington freshman Kailynn Gubbels and junior Milee Young each took home two state medals.

Fort Atkinson Living History Days

On the first weekend of each month from May until October, visitors to Fort Atkinson Historical Park near Fort Calhoun can experience how life might have been lived at the first U.S. military post west of the Missouri River. The fort was established in 1820 and was active until 1827.

 

Fort Calhoun graduates ready to pursue success

During her commencement address, salutatorian Avery McKennan told her classmates,  “ The real world is ahead of us, but I know that our class is full of individuals ready to pursue their own successful futures.”  Congratulations to the Fort Calhoun class of 2019 and best wishes in your pursuit of success.

 

 

Crane migration nears peak along Platte

Row Sanctuary reported Thursday that the sandhill crane migration along the Platte River between Grand Island and Kearney is at or near its peak this weekend. Estimates are that 680,000 cranes – plus or minus 70,000 are roosting on the river.

While the waterfowl may be enjoying the weather, the extremely wet conditions have restricted access to visitors – sometimes referred to as “craniacs” who are looking to view the spectacle.

Last Saturday night and Sunday, viewing experiences were cancelled due to vehicles getting stuck in the mud along Elm Island road which is the only access to the refuge. Reports are that the road east of the refuge is now open, but possibly problematic for some two-wheel drive vehicles. The refuge is offering refunds to those who are not able to get to the refuge due to road conditions.

Prairie chickens dance at Switzer Ranch

In making my reservation  for the Audubon Crane Fest this year I signed up for the Calamus Outfitters Prairie Chicken Tour on the Switzer Ranch at  Calamus, NE.  On a gray morning my tour companions and I boarded an old school bus to travel to the prairie chicken lek, or “booming grounds.”  We sat quietly in the converted school bus blinds listening to the sounds of the prairie coming to life on this grey morning.

As the scene slightly brightened,  a couple dozen male greater prairie chickens not very gracefully flew into the lek or mating area.  The booming and calling commenced as rival birds strutted and challenged to establish dominance.   As two and then three hens arrived the activity increased as the males danced, boomed and strutted in a frenzy to gain the attention of the females.

All in all I highly recommend a stay at Calamus Outfitters and tours to the prairie chicken and  Sharp-tailed Grouse leks.

 

 

 

Sandhill crane migration

Harsh weather throughout Nebraska has made conditions along the Platte river between Grand Island and Kearney less than ideal for both cranes and humans who flock to see them.