With the Red-White game Saturday at Memorial Stadium, the football team is back in the spotlight. One Husker-related spoof in the Omaha Press Club Show last week went viral nationally. It was a parody to “Let It Go” by KFAB radio host Scott Voorhees about missing Bo Pelini: Click Here
The Hastings area will host the Prairie Loft Springfest on April 19. It’s a great chance for kids of all ages to meet baby animals, watch sheep shearing, milk a cow, go on a nature walk, hear bluegrass, make mud pies, plant vegetables, and learn all about Nebraska agriculture and food. For more: www.prairieloft.org.
Horse racing fans had been race down the homestretch to Fonner Park in Grand Island. Live thoroughbred racing is still going on this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Check www.fonnerpark.com.
A former McCook attorney who was sentenced to prison time in Nebraska in 1998 for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars now faces felony theft and embezzlement charges in Colorado Springs. Terry Malcom is accused of stealing more than $1 million from two water districts there over the past 10 years.
Veterans who will live in the 225-bed, $121 million Central Nebraska Veterans’ Home planned in Kearney will benefit from the ideas and work of University of Nebraska-Kearney students who are building model suites for the project. The construction management and interior design students were invited to build and furnish the rooms using blueprints from Wilkins Hinrichs Stober Architects.
A 8-year-old alligator named Sprinkles was being illegally kept as a pet in a kiddie pool in Scottsbluff. But police and animal rescue officials working with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission “arrested” her with the owner’s OK. They quarantined her at the Scottsbluff zoo, Riverside Discovery Center. Last week they took her to the Colorado Gators Rescue Park in Mosca, Colo. Many exotic animals are illegal as pets in Nebraska. April is Animal Cruelty Prevention Month.
Several Hall County Vietnam War Hero Flights to the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C., are being planned in Grand Island, starting in mid-2016. The initial fundraising activity will be a hamburger feed from 5 to 8 p.m. April 29 at the United Veterans Club. Volunteers — as well as veterans to participate! — are encouraged to attend and sign up.
For more than three years, the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station was the only nuclear energy plant in the country that was in a special federal oversight program for reactors with performance problems. But last month, it was released to routine oversight status to join the 98 other U.S. nuclear power plants. The Fort Calhoun plant was offline for eight months in 2011 when the Missouri River flood, a switchgear fire, and the discovery of hundreds of minor safety irregularities caused the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to put it on “probation.” The process has cost Omaha Public Power District customers $58 million. The plant restarted in December 2013.
The citizens’ right to be protected is being weighed against Nebraska’s prison overcrowding problem as the Unicameral debates whether to do away with many “mandatory minimum” sentences in Nebraska law. Purpose: to reduce the number of incoming inmates. The Nebraska Association of County Attorneys and Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert are among those who advocate keeping the stiff sentences for drive-by shootings; crack, heroin and meth dealing; and habitual criminal violations. Others, including Lincoln Sen. Colby Coash, defend LB 173, saying it would ease the overcrowding problem and return more discretion to judges. The state’s prison population is 1,938 inmates, 59% above design capacity. Adding a prison would cost an estimated $130 million.
A routine traffic stop last weekend on Interstate 80 in Seward County led to the seizure of nearly 227 pounds of marijuana and six arrests. Though that was one of the larger drug busts recorded, in 2012 Nebraska state troopers confiscated a total of 7,800 pounds of the drug. In 2007, a vehicle carrying one ton of marijuana worth an estimated $3 million was stopped in Omaha at I-80 and 96th Street. The legalization of marijuana in Colorado has made it a “source state” the way Mexico is a “source nation” for the drug trade, law enforcement officials said.
Nebraska has the biggest inventory of cattle on feed of any state in the nation, according to a March report by the National Agricultural Statistics Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Nebraska edged out Texas for the distinction. Nebraska had more than 4,500 feeding operations, with 2.49 million in feedlots of 1,000 or more. According to the Nebraska Beef Council, the state sells $6.5 billion worth of cattle each year.
A $900,000 federal air-quality grant through the Nebraska Department of Roads will help Omaha’s bike sharing network double its stations this year. Heartland B-Cycle now has 31 stations with 150 bikes in downtown, midtown, NoDo (north downtown) and Ak-Sar-Ben Village. Bike sharing provided an estimated 6,700 rides last year. Daily passes are $6.