BHS presents ‘Guys and Dolls’

Blair High School music and drama departments will present “Guys and Dolls” on Thursday through Saturday evenings and a Saturday Matinee in the Blair High School Auditorium.  The classic ’50’s musical features many memorable songs, and the talented cast does a great job of singing them.  In fact, there is such a wealth of quality performers that BHS director Kelli Westphal and music director Dan Hutsell double cast the roles of Adelaide and Sarah Brown.

BHS Musical Guys and Dolls
Sarah Brown, played by Maddy Nannen, and Adelaide, played by Jenna Carlson sing “Marry the Man Today” during rehearsal for Blair High School’s production of Guys and Dolls” BHS drama director Kelli Westphal double cast the female leads.

Senior Jenna Carlson and Junior Maddy Nannen play Adelaide and Sarah Brown respectively, for the Thursday night and Saturday matinee performances.  Junior Payton Murray and senior Maddie Knudtson assume the roles on Friday and Saturday nights.

Pumpkin fun at South School

Who would have thought that practicing reading, math and science skills could be so much fun?  For more than a dozen years, South School first grade teacher Mariann Andersen has been hauling a pickup load of oversize pumpkins from sister and brother-in-law Rose and Bob Helgoth’s 40 acre patch in St. Libory, NE for this pumpkin fun activity. Each of the pumpkins weighs anywhere from 20 to 50 pounds.

Pumpkin Fun South School

During the Wednesday afternoon activity, parents join in to help supervise, tote the pumpkins, and wield the knives and cutting tools.  Teams of four students to a pumpkin read and follow the instructions in the booklet as they read, record, estimate, weigh, measure and count lines and seeds.  They also read the directions and measure and mix the ingredients to make a batch of pumpkin muffins.

Pumpkin Fun South School
Parent Ashley Bacon watches as a student weighs her pumpkin.

Teachers Anderson and Julia Warner enjoy doing this activity year after year because it gives the students an opportunity to practice math, science and reading skills, and because it is a great way to get the parents involved in a learning activity with their children.  Over 30 parents and grandparents helped with the activity.

“It’s exhausting, but fun!” Warner said.

Arbor Park students dance to the music

SOAR subject

Arbor Park SOAR eagle and owl
SOAR Educator Kay Neumann holds a bald eagle named Thora while she talks with Arbor Park fifth grade students

Save Our Avian Resources (SOAR) educator Kay Neumann visited  Arbor Park School last week with Thora, a bald eagle, and Cedar, an eastern screech owl.  While the goal of SOAR is to return all birds to the wild, Thora suffers from limited vision, due to lead poisoning.  Cedar is non-releasable due to a damaged wing. Neumann said she and her family love to hunt, but lead ammunition can be toxic to wildlife.  That is why Neumann and SOAR advocate the use non-toxic ammunition when hunting.

Jump Rope for Heart week

North School jump rope for heart
Mrs. Pike’s first grade class warm up for the jump rope contests.

Throughout February, students at Deerfield, North and South primary schools in Blair collected donations for the American Heart Association.  The week of Feb. 16th students and staff participated in Jump Rope for Heart week activities.  The annual  event is an opportunity for students to help others while learning about heart health.




State Wrestling Tournament

State Wresting finals
Sophomore Walker Moore works for points against Gretna’s Trevor Fauver in the class B 106 pound state championship match at CenturyLink Center in Omaha

A total of 18 Washington Count wrestlers – ten from Blair, four from Fort Calhoun and four from Arlington took part in the state tournament at CenturyLink Center in Omaha.




January in the mirror

A handful of photos from Washington County events in January 2016