On the Beat in Bluffton

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

3-on-3 Basketball Special Olympians


Wells County Special Olympians, the Bulldogs, took second place at the Indiana State Special Olympics 3 on 3 basketball championship in Indianapolis last weekend. Back row, left to right: Assistant Coach Coralee Bowley, Mike Komosa, Jamie Slack, David Martin, Coach Lisa Stiles; Front from, left to right: Caryn Harnish, Aaron Melton and Amanda Elliott. (Photo by Jerry Battiste)

Wayne Street closed for three days


Bluffton Street Department has been repairing small sections of Wayne Street this week forcing the closure of the road between Silver and Townley streets from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m.. Crews have almost completed the work and the road is expected to fully re-open Friday. (Photo by Jerry Battiste)

Monday, March 30, 2009

NE Indiana Rabbit School








Wells County 4-H Park was knee-deep in rabbits Saturday as dozens of students from across the state came to attend the NE Indiana Rabbit School.
Wells County Master Rabbit Ambassador Danielle Cale coordinated the event with the assistance of many volunteer Wells County 4-H members.

Something to jump up and down about



The weather put an end to several of the activities planned for younger show-goers at the Wells Community Boys and Girls Club's first annual car show Saturday, but the jump tent was still in action. The show was sponsored by Joker Cycles. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

Wells Community B & G Club Car Show






Saturday's weather might not have been ideal, but it didn't deter die-hard car and bike fans from attending the Wells Community Boys and Girls Club's first annual car show in the overflow parking lot of Life Community Church. The event was sponsored by Joker Cycles, and this 1951 Ford Shoebox owned by Sid King was carefully watched over by its own sentry throughout the afternoon. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

Chicken Feedings




Members of the Wells Community Boys and Girls Club served up Nelson's chicken dinners in the Wal-Mart parking lot Friday afternoon in an attempt to raise funds for the club. A steady stream of customers was taking advantage of the opportunity to serve up a quick dinner around 5 p.m. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Pickett's Run Park Upgrade


Pickett's Run Park is getting an upgrade in the form of seven Wellness Stations along an asphalt path leading from the river west toward downtown through the park.

Work began just a few short weeks ago and should be done by the end of April. It's amazing how fast Bluffton Parks Department was able to get the grant money and put it to work. More on this in this weekend's News-Banner.

Tweet-Up Tuesday

We're still on for Tweet-Up Tuesday so mark your calendars.

I'll be your host and I'll be handing out a few prizes, offering my insight into Web 3.0, social networking, online marketing and of course, Twitter.

So meet me at the Bohemian Bean, 5 p.m., Tuesday, March 31.

B&G Chicken Dancers


D.J. Tony Bower (holding the microphone) leads Wells Community Boys and Girls Club members in the chicken dance at the club Thursday evening. Also part of the party were a scavenger hunt, and Wii (Smarter Than a Fifth grader) and X-box (Dance Revolution Contest) games and refreshments. The club will continue to celebrate National Boys and Girls Clubs of America week with a Nelson's Chicken Dinner at Wal-Mart today from 2 to 7 p.m. and a bike and car show at Life Community Center Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Follow Me Please!

Are you my follower? I mean a Blog Follower.

I like having Followers because it's an easy way for me to show my boss why he's paying me to sit at my computer for hours at a time and type gibberish -- I mean worthy information.

So, to all my die-hard fans (you know who you are, mom) I make this simple request: Sign up for Blogger (feel free not to Blog) then "Follow" my blog.

Help keep me gainfully employed and off the streets!

BRRS Unveils New Rehab Equipment


Bluffton Regional Rehabilitation Services showed off some new equipment designed to assist patients with stability problems related to injury; total knee replacement patients will be able walk the treadmill by using the new "unweighting machine" to reduce the burden. (Submitted Photo)

Filmmaker Visits Wells County




Famed filmmaker Mark Archer of New Hollywood Studios, Fort Wayne, is in Ossian and Bluffton today shooting video for the Wells County Economic Development web site.

Archer and his wife, Amber, made their first stop at Roembke Mfg. & Design in the Ossian Industrial Park.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Tweet-Up Tuesdays!

Tweet-Up Tuesdays start next week, March 31 at the Bohemian Bean Coffee House, 200 West Washington Street, right next to the Wells County Public Library. It starts at 5 p.m. and should last about an hour.
I'll have prizes for the first few who show; we can talk about social networking, new programs, web sites, killer apps, or just hang out, drink coffee and talk about Twitter.

This invitation is open to anyone; if you're not a member of Twitter and want to come, head over to www.twitter.com and create an account. It only takes about 3 minutes. Once you do that, head to www.twitter.com/jerrybattiste and www.twitter.com/newsbanner to find more local Twitter users.

I'll post video of our first Tweet-up next week. I hope to have at least 12 people show...so c'mon, let's get together!

That Darn Cat!


A loose cat caused this vehicle rool-over crash on Ind. 116 near 450E Tuesday afternoon. The cat escaped during the crash and has not been seen since. More in today's News-Banner.

Field Fires Claim 50 acres




Wells County firefighters fought blustery conditions for control of two field fires Tuesday. In all, nearly 50 acres of corn stubble burned. (More in today's News-Banner.)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Safe Place Scavenger Hunt-ers canvass Bluffton





During Saturday's Safe Place Scavenger Hunt kids covered downtown Bluffton in pursuit of clues and points and good times.
Bluffton Police Department, Wells County Public Library and Family Centered Services (who sponsored the event) were among the many stops for participants.

IPFW Cheerleaders Come to Bluffton





IPFW Cheerleaders Melissa Miller (front left) and Jaquella Gardner (front right) showed their craft to members of the Wells Community Boys & Girls Club Monday. Joining in the cheer, from left, were Jordan Cummings, Kaylyn Baller, Alyssa Osborn and Katie Hanson. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

Mad Ants at Wells Community Boys & Girls Club






Visiting Mad Ants join members of the Wells Community Boys and Girls Club for a group photo after Sunday afternoon's basketball. Seated in the front row, the Mad Ants, from left, are Dewitt Scott, Jarred Axon, Sean Sonderleiter and Anthony Kent. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

Friday, March 20, 2009

Norwell Pool Spring Classes Open

This year Norwell Pool Spring swim classes will be April 6 through May 13, every Monday and Wednesday for 6-weeks.

The classes include:
• Infant classes (ages 6-18 months) will be offered on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:30-6 p.m. Norwell District swim class fee is $50; Outside NWCS district is $55.
• Toddler classes (ages 18-36 months) will be offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30-6 p.m. Norwell District swim class fee is $50; Outside NWCS district is $55.
• Preschool classes (ages 3-5 years) are Mondays & Wednesdays 4:15-4:45 or 6-6:30 p.m. Norwell District preschool swim class fee is $50; Outside NWCS district is $55.
• Elementary classes (K & up) are Mondays and Wednesdays 4:45-5:30 p.m. OR 6:30-7:15 p.m. Norwell District elementary swim class fee is $50; Outside NWCS district is $55.
• Swim Team Prep: Springboard Diving – Mondays and Wednesdays 6:30-7:30 p.m. Norwell District swim class fee is $50; Outside NWCS district is $55; Stroke Drills – Tuesdays and Thursdays 6:30-7:30pm. Norwell District stroke drills class fee is $50; Outside NWCS district is $55.

Adult Programming:
• Early morning Lap Swim , Tuesdays and Thursdays 6 -7 a.m. Norwell District swim class fee is $30; Outside NWCS district is $35.
• Adult Lap Swim, Mondays and Wednesdays 7:15-8:15 p.m., Norwell District swim class fee is $30; Outside NWCS district is $35.
• Adult Water Exercise, Mondays and Wednesdays 7:15-8:15 p.m. Norwell District swim class fee is $40; Outside NWCS district is $45.
• Adult Swim Lessons, Mondays and Wednesdays 7:15-8:15 p.m. Norwell District swim class fee is $50; Outside NWCS district is $55.

For more information or to register visit the Norwell Middle School web site at http://www.nwcs.k12.in.us/NMS/nms.html. You may also e-mail jody.gates@nwcs.k12.in.us, by phone at 260-543-2218 ext. 6190. Payment must be received before a spot is assured. Mailing address: Norwell Middle School, Attn: Jon Gates 1100 E US 224, Ossian, IN 46777. Make checks payable to Norwell Pool.
Private Lessons are available on a limited basis. Please call or e-mail for more information.

Doughnuts with Dad




On Friday, March 13th, Southern Wells Elementary P.I.E. organization hosted their annual Donuts with Dad. This event gives students, dads, and grandfathers a chance to share some extra time in the morning and have breakfast together. The morning was a huge success with a bigger than ever turn out. At last count, a total of 425+ attended the gathering. The students and staff at S.W.E.S would like to thank Partners In Education for all your hard work in making the school a better place for all. (Submitted Photo)

Southern Wells Dodge Ball





PIE dodge ball activity night at Southern Wells
Partners in Education sponsored the first ever Dodge Ball/Activity Night for kindergarten through sixth grade and more than 300 people attended. The evening started off with the Raider Ropers performing, then Mike Carter challenged kindergarten and first grade to a game of “Clean Your Room.”  After that, the dodge ball tournament began. Teams were divided by grade with the second grade vs. third grade, fourth grade vs. fifth grade, and sixth grade vs. SWES staff.  The eventual winner was fifth grade.
During intermission at the SW PIE Activity Night, students could attempt to shoot free throws to win a 2 liter of pop. The evening finished up with a hula hoop contest won by Markie Price, Taylor Doepker, and Chloe Elam.
(Submitted Photo)

Camera Phone Scavenger Hunt March 21

Family Centered Services, Inc. will host a Camera Phone Scavenger Hunt for the downtown Safe Place Sites Saturday, March 21st from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to celebrate National Safe Place Week.
Those attending will meet at the Bluffton City Gym 128 E. Market St. All kids and friends welcome. You will be placed in groups with adult supervision. You will receive wacky clues to find downtown Safe Place Sites
Snacks and drinks will be provided on your journey.
Following the event pizza will be provided by Tyeger's Pizza.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Historical Society Photographing County sites

Rural Wells County residents be advised:

A survey of historical sites around Wells County is currently being conducted, including photographing many above ground resources.
Funded by Indiana Division of Historic Preservation and Archeology, the survey is being conducted by ARCH, Architecture & Community Heritage, of Fort Wayne.

Sheriff Bob Frantz said his department has received several calls from rural residents concerned about the suspicious activity.
Frantz said the Wells County surveyor, Michael Galbraith, drives a black Volvo and is easy to spot.
Unlike the recent influx of solicitors seen in Wells County, Galbraith is not selling anything and likely will just be passing through areas, driving slowly and taking photographs.
Frantz said because of the recent surge in illegal solicitation he expects some residents will remain concerned despite the warnings.
“I just wish they would have found a better time to do this in Wells County,” Frantz said.

Wells Community B & G Club Spring Break activities

The Wells Community Boys and Girls Club has a huge week of activities planned for the Spring Break week.
The action starts at the club Sunday afternoon, when members of the Fort Wayne Mad Ants come to town to tackle the local talent in some 3-on-3 ball. The Mad Ants will be at the club fro 4 to 7 p.m. and will also be available for autographs and photos.
There will be a fee of $1 per player and $4 per spectator for this activity. Children under five years of age get free admission.
Monday sees IPFW Cheerleaders come to town. They will run a camp from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. for K-8th grade boys and girls, with lunch and a performance at 2 p.m.
“Goodie bags” will be on sale for $20 at this event.
Tuesday afternoon, starting at 1 p.m., visitors to the club will get the chance to take out their frustrations on some old vehicles, as the club will run a “Smash a Truck” activity.
Wednesday evening will see the club run a chili dinner fundraiser, with proceeds benefitting the Kid’s Cafe. Adult meals will be $6, while children 12 and under can eat for $3.
On Thursday from 8 p.m., the club will host a party “for all kids”, with a scavenger hunt, a dance contest, Wii tournaments and a disk jockey all on the list of entertainment.
Club members will be serving nelson’s Chicken at Wal-Mart from 2 to 7 p.m. Friday, and a bike and car show is scheduled for Saturday.
Regular club programs will not run during Spring Break, but will resume the following week.
(frank@news-banner.com)

Safe Place Scavenger Hunt (REMINDER!!)


Bluffton’s streets will be alive with the sound of children!
Well, that’s the hope anyway, as Saturday, March 21, will see a Safe Place Camera Phone Scavenger Hunt around the central city, which will be the feature event of National Safe Place Week, and is being organized by Family Centered Services (FCS).

To register, call FCS on 824-8574.

PICTURED: Wells Community Boys and Girls Club Director Shaun Gray and Safe Place/Host homes Co-ordinator Abbey Schoeff show off one of the posters advertising Saturday's Safe Place Scavenger Hunt. The Boys and Girls Club is one of 35 Safe Place sites in Wells County. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

SAFE PLACES:
Bluffton EMS, 140 W. Spring St., Bluffton
Bluffton Harrison Elementary School, 1100 E. Spring St., Bluffton
Bluffton Police and Fire Dept., 200 E. Market St., Bluffton
Bluffton Public Library, 202 W. Washington St., Bluffton
Bluffton Regional Medical Center ER, 303 S. Main St., Bluffton
Boys and Girls Club (Wells Community), 1410 S. Wayne St., Bluffton
Brew Ha, 122 S. Jefferson St, Ossian
Capri Apartments, 58 Capri Court, Bluffton
Chester Township EMS, 9873S 300W, Poneto
Country Corner Gas and Deli, 2956 S. Main St., Liberty Center.
Country Cupboard, 1300 S. Main St., Blufffton
Craigville Post Office, 2381 N. Main St., Craigville
Craigville Telephone, 2351 N. Main St., Craigville
Family Centered Services, Inc., 123 S. Marion St., Bluffton
Handi-Spot, 616 W. Lancaster St., Bluffton
House of Hope, 417 S. Main St., Bluffton
Lancaster Elementary School, 275 E. Jackson St., Bluffton
Life Christian Church, 428 S. Oak St., Bluffton
McDonald's, 984 N. Main St., Bluffton
Northern Wells Community School Office, 312 N. Jefferson St., Ossian
Norwell High School, 1100E U.S.224, Ossian
Nowell Middle School, 1100E U.S.224, Ossian
Ossian Community Market, 410 N. Metts St., Ossian
Ossian Elementary School, 213 S. Jefferson St., Ossian
Ossian EMS, 570 N. Jefferson St., Ossian
Ossian Public Library, 207 N. Jefferson St., Ossian
Pak-A-Sak #22 (Pantry Plus) 204 W. Wabash St., Bluffton
Pak-A-Sak #9 901 S. Main St., Bluffton
Pizza Hut, 632 N. Main St., Bluffton
Southern Wells Elementary School, 9120S 300W, Poneto
Southern Wells Jr./Sr. High School, 9120S 300W, Poneto
Subway (Ossian), 502 S. Jefferson St., Ossian
Wal-Mart Supercenter, 2100 N. Main St., Bluffton
Wells County Alternative School, 1820 W. Western Ave., Bluffton
Wells County Department of Child Services, 221 W. Market St., Bluffton
Wells County Sheriff's Dept., 1525 W. Western Ave., Bluffton


(Photo by Frank Shanly)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Southern Wells Students Get Heart Healthy


Southern Wells Elementary School recently participated in celebrating February as National Heart Month. 
Students in grades K through 6 participated in several activities such as Jump Rope For Heart, Hoops For Heart, American Heart Hoop Shoot Competition, Jar Wars, American Heart Poster Contest and the annual American Heart Pledge Drive. 
Students in grades K through 3 participated in the Jump For Heart and raised $1,416.02. Students in grades 4 through 6 participated in Hoops For Heart and raised $585.00, and all students in grades K through 6 participated in Jar Wars and raised $932.77. 
All together Southern Wells Elementary raised a total of $2,933.79 for the American Heart Association.
 Four students, Kory Miller, Delaney Smith, Knute Ripperger, and  Grace Dunmoyer, raised over $100.00 each and their names were placed in a drawing to win a brand new bicycle, donated by the Southern Wells P.I.E organization. Kory Miller, a 6th grader, won the bike. 
The student who raised the most money in pledges was 2nd grader Knute Ripperger, who raised $160.00. 
American Heart Poster winners were Kayla Zumbrun, Brooke Gephart, Rachel Johnson, Kari Rains, and Georgia Barr, and Brooke Zoda.
 Second-grade was our Jar Wars winner this year and will receive a pizza party before spring break.  second-grade won with 17,976 points; Fifth-grade took second place with 12,999 point and rounding out third place was fourth-grade with 10,107 points.

O'Battiste says, Happy St. Patrick's Day!


So, I've been busily adding photos and assorted bric-a-brac to the News-Banner Facebook page. Check it out!
Also, I decided to wear a leprechaun hat and change my name to Jerry O'Battiste for today only...check out my new pic at my Facebook page.
Now, if I could just fill the water cooler with green beer, we'd be set for the day.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Bluffton Parks Department St. Paddy's Luncheon


Superintendent of Bluffton Parks and Recreation Department, Pam Vanderkolk and Brandy Fiechter, assistant superintendent, spent a part of Monday afternoon serving lunch to dozens of seniors for the annual St. Patrick’s Day Luncheon at the First United Methodist Church in Bluffton. (Photo by Jerry Battiste)

Niermeyer earns NHS ICE honors


Senior Rachel Niermeyer has been selected as Norwell High School’s ICE (Interdisciplinary Cooperative Education) Student of the Week for the week of March 16, 2009.
Niermeyer’s place of employment in conjunction with the ICE Program is For Kid’s Sake Daycare and Pre-school Center located at the First Church of Christ in Bluffton. Her many duties at the worksite include caring for two- and five-year-old children. She assists with art, reading, and math as well as helping with the preparation of breakfast each morning. Her supervisor is Ruth Mechling.
Rachel is the daughter of Mike and Lynne Niermeyer of Bluffton. Following graduation she plans to study child development at Ball State and cheer for the Cardinal home football and girls’ basketball programs.
“Rachel is doing a great job at For Kid’s Sake,” said Norwell ICE Coordinator Ron Harnish. “She is confident in her skills in helping with the development of pre-school children. The ICE Program has helped her search her heart and decide that further study in child development is what she wants to do; some ICE students only find out what they don’t want to choose as a career. I wish Rachel great success as she moves on to higher learning in this career area.”
The ICE program allows students to be released early each school day to work at jobs that could develop into future careers. Students learn skills, attain credits, and earn wages. Each student is also involved in a related-learning class, which is taught by Harnish.

Congrats! To Optimist Contest Kids

I spent a couple hours yesterday helping judge the Optimist Club Oratorical Contest. The nine students who participated, four boys and five girls, each did an outstanding job of speaking about what Optimism meant to them. From personal stories of triumph to ideas to foster optimistic inspiration in others, each of the kids had something worth while to say. And I was glad I had a chance to listen.

I want to thank the Optimists for allowing me to participate and congratulate all the students. Everyone performed admirably.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Southern Wells Kindergarten Round-up

SWES will hold Kindergarten Round – Up on April 7, 2009. Parents may choose to come at 9:00 a.m. or 1:00 p.m. Both meetings will be conducted exactly the same. Be sure to bring your child’s birth certificate at this time. This is an informational meeting only and students need not attend.

Development screening will be done near the end of May. The entire process will take about an hour and a half, and sign-ups for screening will occur at Round – Up.

Children need to be 5 years old on or before August 1, 2009, to be eligible to enroll. However there is a provision to allow parents who have students who are 5 in September to apply for early enrollment. The test for early enrollment will be given at the same time as the developmental screening in May.

Please call the school at (765) 728-2121 between 7:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. for further details and pre-registration.

Cavity Free Zone in Bluffton


Members of the Wells Community Boys and Girls Club Cavity Free Zone Program proudly show their certificates showing they have successfully completed the program. Front row, from left, Kyler Poling, Trinity Smuts, Ashlyn Walters, Kaylee Claghorn and Jaden Claghorn. Middle row, from left, Gabby Lipa, Clemente Jasso and Spring Applegate. Back row, from left, Taylor Coratti (Program Co-ordinator), Noah Fredrick, Bubba Applegate and Emily Gephart. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

National Safe Place Scavenger Hunt


Bluffton’s streets will be alive with the sound of children!
Well, that’s the hope anyway, as Saturday, March 21, will see a Safe Place Camera Phone Scavenger Hunt around the central city, which will be the feature event of National Safe Place Week, and is being organized by Family Centered Services (FCS).

To register, call FCS on 824-8574.

PICTURED: Wells Community Boys and Girls Club Director Shaun Gray and Safe Place/Host homes Co-ordinator Abbey Schoeff show off one of the posters advertising Saturday's Safe Place Scavenger Hunt. The Boys and Girls Club is one of 35 Safe Place sites in Wells County. (Photo by Frank Shanly)

SAFE PLACES:
Bluffton EMS, 140 W. Spring St., Bluffton
Bluffton Harrison Elementary School, 1100 E. Spring St., Bluffton
Bluffton Police and Fire Dept., 200 E. Market St., Bluffton
Bluffton Public Library, 202 W. Washington St., Bluffton
Bluffton Regional Medical Center ER, 303 S. Main St., Bluffton
Boys and Girls Club (Wells Community), 1410 S. Wayne St., Bluffton
Brew Ha, 122 S. Jefferson St, Ossian
Capri Apartments, 58 Capri Court, Bluffton
Chester Township EMS, 9873S 300W, Poneto
Country Corner Gas and Deli, 2956 S. Main St., Liberty Center.
Country Cupboard, 1300 S. Main St., Blufffton
Craigville Post Office, 2381 N. Main St., Craigville
Craigville Telephone, 2351 N. Main St., Craigville
Family Centered Services, Inc., 123 S. Marion St., Bluffton
Handi-Spot, 616 W. Lancaster St., Bluffton
House of Hope, 417 S. Main St., Bluffton
Lancaster Elementary School, 275 E. Jackson St., Bluffton
Life Christian Church, 428 S. Oak St., Bluffton
McDonald's, 984 N. Main St., Bluffton
Northern Wells Community School Office, 312 N. Jefferson St., Ossian
Norwell High School, 1100E U.S.224, Ossian
Nowell Middle School, 1100E U.S.224, Ossian
Ossian Community Market, 410 N. Metts St., Ossian
Ossian Elementary School, 213 S. Jefferson St., Ossian
Ossian EMS, 570 N. Jefferson St., Ossian
Ossian Public Library, 207 N. Jefferson St., Ossian
Pak-A-Sak #22 (Pantry Plus) 204 W. Wabash St., Bluffton
Pak-A-Sak #9 901 S. Main St., Bluffton
Pizza Hut, 632 N. Main St., Bluffton
Southern Wells Elementary School, 9120S 300W, Poneto
Southern Wells Jr./Sr. High School, 9120S 300W, Poneto
Subway (Ossian), 502 S. Jefferson St., Ossian
Wal-Mart Supercenter, 2100 N. Main St., Bluffton
Wells County Alternative School, 1820 W. Western Ave., Bluffton
Wells County Department of Child Services, 221 W. Market St., Bluffton
Wells County Sheriff's Dept., 1525 W. Western Ave., Bluffton


(Photo by Frank Shanly)

FOUR NORWELL STUDENTS ADVANCE TO BPA NATIONALS



left to right, Thea Smekens, Jessica Bunch, Brock Caley, Mike Caley AND the pin designed by Thea Smekens.



Norwell seniors Jessica Bunch, Brock Caley, and Michael Caley and junior Thea Smekens have qualified to compete at the national Business Professionals of America Leadership Conference in Dallas, Texas, in May.
The students qualified for the national competition earlier this week (March 8-10) at the state conference held in Indianapolis. Approximately 1500 Indiana high school business students from more than 80 Indiana high schools attended the state conference. Debbie Darnell is the BPA Advisor and accompanied the students to Indianapolis.
Following are the names of students advancing to national competition and the students’ state ranking:
Computerized Accounting
Michael Caley, first
Brock Caley, second
Desktop Publishing
Jessica Bunch, first
Thea Smekens, third
Advanced Word Processing
Brock Caley, fourth
Graphic Design Promotion
Thea Smekens, second
Financial Math & Analysis
Michael Caley, ninth
Marketing/Management/Human Resource Concepts
Jessica Bunch, eighth
Michael Caley, tenth

The pin designed by Thea Smekens was selected as the Indiana Trading Pin for all Indiana delegates attending the national conference.

Steering Committee loses traction


Norwell High School Renovation Steering Committee heard some number crunching based on an $18 million project and a $12 million project and were almost evenly divided on what to do about it. Read about it in today's News-Banner.

Tornado Siren Test Coming Wednesday!

Bluffton Fire Department will be participating in a statewide tornado siren test between 10 - 10:30 a.m. and 7 - 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday.
The sirens will sound for about one-minute. Firefighters will use the time to determine which, if any, sirens are in need of repair. And then repair or replace them as needed.
In case of poor weather the day of the test, it will be rescheduled for Thursday at the same times.


So, please don't call the fire department Wednesday and ask them what the sirens are all about. OK?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Good Food at Bluffton Middle School


Bluffton Mayor Ted Ellis and Common Council members James Phillabaum, Bette Erxleben and Carl Perry took a tour of the Bluffton Middle School culinary arts facility recently. The school used $25,000 in CEDIT funds to create the facility and start a program to provide career oriented food preparation classes. (Photo by Dave Schultz)

Kindergarten kindness to animal shelter



During Random Acts of Kindness Week, February 9-13, Lancaster Elementary Student Council sponsored several activities for each grade level. Kindergarten students collected coins for the Bluffton Animal Shelter. (Left to right) Pictured are the kindergarten classes and teachers, student council sponsors Kelli Ruble and Vickie Roby (background) and student council representatives (left to right) Hana Webb, Preston Wright, Avery Taylor, and Sydney Geiger, presenting a check for $200 to Tina Morris (center) of the Bluffton Animal Shelter. (Submitted photo)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Mystery Science Theater Bluffton


Fans of "Mystery Science Theatre 3000," the comedy/science fiction cable television series from the 1990s, may wonder if Mike, Tom Turbo, and Crow have been replaced. That's not the case at all. The silhouettes in this photo belong to, front left, Bluffton Common Council member Carl Perry, Bluffton City Attorney Andrew Carnall, and Bluffton Mayor Ted Ellis. The three were photographed in front of Police Chief Tammy Schaffer's presentation during Tuesday morning's Common Council meeting in the Bluffton High School auditorium. (Photo by Dave Schultz)

LANCASTER AND OSSIAN KINDERGARTEN ROUND-UP SESSIONS APRIL 14

Lancaster and Ossian Elementary schools will each hold two Kindergarten Round-up sessions on Tuesday, April 14.


Ossian Elementary: Sessions at 4:30 and 5:30 p.m. Parents should call the school to sign up for one of the sessions – 622-4179.
Lancaster Elementary: Sessions at 5:00 and 6:30 p.m. Parents should call the school to sign up for one of the sessions – 565-3135.

The child being enrolled in kindergarten next year needs to attend with the parent. Parents will have an informational meeting while the children participate in some screening activities with kindergarten teachers.
Each school will provide a tour of kindergarten classrooms and have a school bus on site to tour.

Any parent who cannot attend Kindergarten Round-up should contact the school the child will attend. The child’s birth certificate, social security card, and immunization record should be brought to the school on April 14.

The State of Indiana requires that STUDENTS MUST BE FIVE YEARS OLD ON OR BEFORE AUGUST 1, 2009, to enroll in kindergarten for the 2009-10 school year.
Letters concerning kindergarten enrollment will be sent to parents in early April.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Follow News-Banner at Twitter.com

The service is called Twitter, but the messages are called Tweets.

If you haven't heard about it, chances are you've been living on a deserted island for the last few months. Twitter is the new micro-blogging web site designed with brevity in mind.

Here's how it works:

Visit www.twitter.com/newsbanner


You'll see a list of all our posts. They are limited to 140 characters, so don't expect lengthy essays, just little news briefs--what's coming up in today's newspaper or special projects we're working on. We will also use the service to post live reports; breaking news as it happens.

If you sign-up to Twitter you can have those Tweets sent directly to your mobile device, so you can get the news you want, right where you are. Or, keep up with us at your desktop or laptop; PC or Mac.

You can also use Twitter to talk-back to us. Post your comments to the News-Banner by typing @newsbanner into your Twitter box and the message will go straight to us.

So check out the new micro-blogging service and see what you think. In fact, Tweet us a response. We'd love to hear it!

p.s.-- Don't forget I'm already on Facebook and Twitter: www.twitter.com/jerrybattiste

Ossian PTO Carnival

video

Good times last week at the Ossian Elementary School PTO Carnival. It was their first big fundraiser of the year for the group and big fun for the community.

Southern Wells FFA Winners







These Southern Wells FFA students spend weekends and free time learning skills that will make them better prepared to join the workforce in a career of their choice. They are also among the winners at Saturday's district competition.

GH Team:
Back Row: Lucas Miller, Morgan Perry, Taylor Poling, Brett Irelan, Quaid Zoda, and Ian Boxell
Front Row: Kaitlyn Dunnuck, Kendra Mounsey, Sadie Herr, Jayde Sills, and Paige Newman

Group:
Third Row: Lucas Miller, Zach Smith, Kyle Gearhart, Justin Perry, Sara Alford, Kyle Thompson, and Sadie Herr
Second Row: Mary McClure, Damon Smith, Quaid Zoda, Linly Lloyd, Jayde Sills, Kendra Mounsey, and Mandy Stoffer
First Row: Blake Huffman, Acacia Herr, Jessica Nusbaumer, Sarah Spaulding, Madeline Wygant, Jenny Lloyd, and Derek Price

Firsts:
Back Row: Derek Price, Sara Alford, and Acacia Herr
Front Row: Damon Smith, Kyle Thompson, Jenny Lloyd, and Mandy Stoffer

Team:
Back Row: Kyle Thompson, Acacia Herr, Blake Huffman, Tyler Hogston, Justin Perry, Sarah Spaulding, Emily Hartley, and Damon Smith
Front Row: Linly Lloyd, Mandy Stoffer, Madeline Wygant, and Jenny Lloyd