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.
Shelby Alstadt and Courtney Baxter lead the procession of graduating seniors.
Hannah Conklin receives her diploma from school board president Jon Genoways.
Molly Penas, Riley Mitchell and the Concert Choir perform one last song together at Fort Calhoun graduation.
Fort Calhoun graduation 1
Valedictorians from left Zoe Fickbohm, Avery McKennan, and Taya Skelton.
Principal Jerry Green greets Salutatorian Julie Klemm.
Turning tassels Caleb Steiner, Nicholas Smith, Taya Skelton, and Megan Rupp and classmates turn their tassels.
Future is bright for the Fort Calhoun Graduates of 2019.
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.
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.
Male Prairie Chickens challenge each other to establish dominance.
Prairie Chickens strut and dance on a lek or mating area at Calamus Outfitters near Calamus, NE.
A male prairie chicken makes use of the bellows-like orange patches on his neck to create a booming sound to entice a hen.
Prairie Chickens strut and dance to get the attention of a passing female.
Tour members return from old busses converted to blinds in the background for the return bus ride to Calamus Outfitters
The annual Soup and Salad Supper is a show case for talented sixth to twelfth grade instrumental groups and talented musicians. There were also some fun surprises during the Otte Middle School eighth grade performance of a Star Wars medley.
Blair Otte Seventh grade baritone solo
Blair Otte Middle School sixth grade band performs at the Fine Arts Soup and Salad Supper
Blair Fine Arts Soup and Salad Supper
Instrumental Music teachers Chiyo Trauernicht and Jeff Mount dual with light sabers during Star Wars medley performed by Otte eigth grade band.
First Friday of Lent means that crowds flock to the annual St. John the Baptist Fish Fry in Fort Calhoun. The fish fry is a premier community event that draws big crowds from across the Omaha Metro area and far beyond.
Steve Dethlefs drains a basket of hot fried fish.
B J Grove and Jenny Salsbury cook up fries and hush puppies.
Wanda Worsley and Scott Dai serve up plates of fish.
The Fish Friar Mike Conrad sells split the pot tickets.
Fish Friar Mike Conrad and Sue Hershman split tickets for the split the pot drawing.
Roxanne Wieland receives her plate of baked and fried fish.
Some 5th grade students had the opportunity to enjoy the snow and show their creativity on Friday before spring break, Students who were able to keep at least one ICMM ticket were invited to this snow party. ICMM stands for I Can Manage Myself. The students loved their party and created snow dogs, penguins, tunnels, snowmen, forts, castles, planes and even a stegosaurus. Who says kids these days do not know how to go outside and enjoy nature?
Boys build snow forts
Fifth grader blows ice bubbles
Girls build a snow penguin
Girls build a snow dog
A group of Arbor Park fifth grade girls show off their snow dog