On the Beat in Bluffton

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Norwell Dance Team - Fight Song



(Submitted by kdaizovi)

If you have video, post it to YouTube and send us the embed code, or, just send us a link to your YouTube file and we will do the rest!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Progress being made at First Presbyterian Church

Pastor Bob Madsen provided his parishioners an update on the progress to clean-up First Presbyterian Church following the boiler room fire earlier this month:


I am sitting in one of my three temporary offices – McDonald’s. Free wireless internet access makes paying for a cup of coffee worthwhile.

I believe that I told you in my last message that most of the building had been cleaned of the soot from the fire. Everything above the ceilings has been sprayed with shellac to seal in any particulates that may have evaded the cleaning crews. If all goes well, the replacement of ceiling tiles will begin later this week.

The Session authorized taking advantage of the open ceilings to add insulation to portions of the building where none had been installed prior to this point. Ted Smith, Ken Hauser, and Walter Erxleben are working on that now. If you have a pair of free hands – either your own or a pair on the ends of the arms of someone else in your house who needs (in your estimation) to get out and do something - give Ted a call.

All of the duct work connecting air handlers to diverters in rooms has to be replaced. The old has been removed and the new delivered. Air handlers have been scrubbed out and sealed with shellac. The new duct work has been delivered to the church and has been staged throughout the building.

The boilers are in place and the piping in the in the boiler room is being completed but the presence of electric space heaters throughout the building makes me think the boilers are not yet in operation.

If you have some time and want to help sorting through Sunday School materials you could give Julie Coverdale a call. Or if you would care to help with the same task for Daycare, you could call Jolin Whicker.

Well, they are mopping the floor all around me. I take that as a hint that I have used the space and internet for the length of time permitted based on the cost of my purchase.

Bob Madsen

Indiana Approves New Teacher Standards: First to Align with Common Core

Indiana Department of Education Release:

The Indiana Professional Standards Advisory Board, in conjunction with the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE), unanimously approved new developmental and content standards for educators last week. This action makes Indiana the first state in the nation to fully align its teacher standards with Common Core State Standards. Produced in partnership with the Evaluation Systems group of Pearson, the new, rigorous standards are also aligned with the Indiana Academic Standards as well as national standards in each field.

The Indiana educator standards are custom-designed for Indiana and articulate IDOE’s expectations regarding the content and pedagogical knowledge and skills that are important for Indiana educators, including building and district-level leaders. The primary focus of the 46 content area standards is the subject-matter knowledge and skills needed to teach effectively in Indiana classrooms or to provide effective leadership in Indiana schools. The primary focus of the five school setting developmental standards is on the pedagogical knowledge and skills needed to teach in various school settings.

“With the launch of our new teacher standards, Indiana is blazing the trail nationally for preparation and licensure of new teachers and school leaders,” said Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Tony Bennett. “The new standards will ensure all Indiana educators are well prepared to teach the subject areas in which they are licensed, provide leadership for our schools, and contribute to improved achievement for all Indiana students.”

Over 500 Indiana educators and over 100 higher education representatives participated in the rigorous development and review process. Dr. Bennett indicated that other states have expressed interest in the new Indiana standards and their development process.

“Evaluation Systems was honored to collaborate with Dr. Bennett and Indiana educators on this groundbreaking project in support of the Common Core State Standards,” said Dr. William Gorth, president of the Evaluation Systems group of Pearson. “It was a pleasure to work with educators and experts across many fields to develop and review the new standards.”

The Evaluation Systems group of Pearson has more than three decades of experience preparing teacher standards and developing, administering and scoring customized tests for prospective teachers in the United States and has created teacher certification tests for more than 100 content fields, professional teaching skills and the basic skills of college-level reading, writing and mathematics.

For more information on the Indiana Department of Education, go to www.doe.in.gov.

For more information about Common Core State Standards, please visit www.corestandards.org.

For more information about the Evaluation Systems group of Pearson, please visit www.teacher.pearsonassessments.com.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Unlimited city trash pickup this week; trees picked up next week

The city of Bluffton is helping residents recover from Christmas.
The city will have unlimited trash pickup this week and will also pick up Christmas trees next week.
National Serv-All will collect an unlimited number of 30-gallon bags of trash in addition to the standard 95-gallon carts on residents’ normal pickup day.
Pickup may be earlier than usual, and residents should have their trash out no later than 6 a.m.
Christmas trees will be picked up from curbsides the week of Jan. 3. Trees must be placed at the curbside — not in the streets or alleys — no later than 6 a.m. on Jan. 3.
City residents who do not wish to wait for streetside collection may take their Christmas trees to the city’s compost site on Ind. 124 across from Expert Transmission.

Adopt-A-Pet!




All 3 kittens are littermates. They are 12 weeks old. 1 male and 2 females. All are current on vaccines!

**We have several cats that are fixed and/or declawed for adoption. Their adoption fee is only $10.00
For more information call the Bluffton Animal Shelter 824-6063

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Project Lead the Way at Bluffton High School

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Farewell Sheriff Bob Frantz

LCES "An International Holiday"

SWES Holiday singing

Southern Wells Elementary School students, teachers and staff gathered in the library on Tuesday to celebrate the holiday with song.





Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Understanding AYP and PL221 at Bluffton-Harrison

Dave Schultz talks with the Dailey's

Zeigler Christmas display

Southern Wells students making a difference


Southern Wells Elementary and High School once again this year participated in the Angel Tree program sponsored by the Markle Church of Christ. Teachers, staff, and organizations involved at the school all helped purchase items for the Karing for Kids tree. Ashley Stinson, Elementary Counselor, helped to make all the arrangements possible for this program at Southern Wells. Thanks to everyone involved from information gathering, gift buying, and delivery to needy families in the area. Pictured in the front row are fourth grade students: Coleman Beeks, Megan Gearheart, Mason Huffman, Gage Allen, Karissa Heiniger. Back row Mike Duggan and Brian James with the Markle Church of Christ along with Ashley Stinson and fourth grade students: Knute Ripperger, Sarah Bothast, Reid Shaffer, Kirtlyn Noble, Alexis Bradin, and Aubrie Leas.

Even the plows are festive




Gerber Furniture went all out in decorating this snow plow for Christmas.

Who else has stunning displays this year? Send us a photo of your Christmas light display and we will post it right here.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Adopt-A-Pet (It's Christmas!)


Indy is a 5 month old Tiger/White DSH, neutered male. Current on all vaccines.



Sarge is a 6 year old Ger Shepherd/Collie mix, neutered male.



Sport is a 7 month old Chow/Terrier mix, male





**We have several cats that are fixed and/or declawed for adoption. Their adoption fee is only $10.00
For more information call the Bluffton Animal Shelter 824-6063

Friday, December 17, 2010

2010 Winter Wonderland

Carbon Monoxide Alarms Could Prevent Half of All CO Poisoning Deaths

With the arrival of the holiday season comes the arrival of colder weather, as well as an increase in the number of homes using fuel-burning appliances. These appliances include ovens, space heaters, generators, indoor grills and fireplaces, and they can cause dangerous levels of carbon monoxide to build up in the home.

“Families today are better at understanding the importance of having working smoke alarms in every sleeping area, but what about carbon monoxide alarms?” says Mark Miller, chief dive tech for hyperbaric medicine, St. Joseph Hospital. “Carbon monoxide is so dangerous because it is odorless and invisible, and it can kill. CO in small doses that might not noticeably affect an adult can make a child seriously ill.”

According to a 2004–2006 study, children younger than 5 years old have the highest estimated rate of CO-related visits to the emergency room each year in the United States. More than 25 kids die from CO poisoning every year.

Important safety tips to protect families from CO poisoning include:

- Prevent CO buildup in the first place – make sure heating appliances are in good working order and are used only in well-ventilated areas.

- Don’t run a car engine in the garage, even to warm it up; move the car outside first.

- Install a CO alarm outside every sleeping area, on every level of your home and at least 15 feet away from every fuel-burning appliance.

- When you check your smoke alarm batteries each month, check the batteries on your CO alarms at the same time. Replace the batteries twice a year.

- Never use a stove as a source of heat.

- Have all gas, oil or coal burning appliances inspected by a technician every year to ensure they’re working correctly and are properly ventilated.

- When a CO leak is suspected, open windows to allow fresh air into the home. If someone who has been in a poorly ventilated room with a fuel-burning appliance exhibits symptoms such as headache, fatigue, nausea, vomiting or confusion, move the victim to an area with fresh air and call 911.

- If more than one person in the home suddenly feels ill for no apparent reason, or if a CO alarm goes off, get everyone outside immediately and call 911 from a prearranged meeting place.

“CO alarms are available at hardware stores for about $20,” says Carmen DeBruce, Allen County Safe Kids Coordinator. “That is a small price to pay to help detect odorless, poisonous gases in the home before it’s too late.”

For more information about CO poisoning, visit safekids.org or call the poison control hotline at (800) 222-1222.

Family Centered Services’ 10th Annual Breakfast with Santa





Bluffton, IN December 16, 2010 In celebration of the Christmas season, Family Centered Services recently sponsored its tenth annual “Breakfast with Santa” for parents and children who participate in the Healthy Families program in Wells County.

Healthy Families supports new parents providing encouragement, parenting tips, child development information and access to community resources.

This year, 37 people from 12 families attended the Breakfast with Santa event on Saturday, December 4th, which included refreshments, beautiful Christmas decorations, gifts for each child and family, and of course, pictures on Santa’s lap.

Family Centered Services would like to thank the dedicated donors and volunteers who made this event possible, including First Presbyterian Church for the providing the location, Heyerly’s Bakery for refreshments, Kristi Reinhard for being the photographer and Dave Schwartz for being Santa.

A special thank you is also extended to Dot Vanhorn, Jane Reinhard, and Pat Sieberns for the delicious homemade cookies.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Fort Wayne German Choir

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Southern Wells Elementary School

Time for the annual Christmas Concert at Southern Wells Elementary School:


Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Snowball is a 2 year old Flame Point Persian, neutered male and declawed.


Scooter is a 6 year old Grey DSH, neuetered male and declawed.


Blue is a 3 year old Grey DSH, neutered male and declawed.

*All 3 of these cats are very sweet and affectionate. Their adoption fee is only $10.00

For more information call the Bluffton Animal Shelter 824-6063

2010 NHS Cheer Camp

Cookie Walk for A Friend's House



Video by News-Banner Editor Dave Schultz

Monday, December 13, 2010

Indiana road conditions updated by phone, online

Indiana motorists can find out the latest in winter road conditions online or by phone.

Indiana State Police administrators are asking motorists to use the phone line or website instead of calling police dispatchers, who are normally extremely busy when the weather turns bad.

Both the phone line and the website have updated information Dec. 1 through March 31.

For updated road conditions:
• Call 800-261-ROAD (7623); or
• Visit the Indiana Department of Transportation website, www.TrafficWise.in.gov.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Animal Shelter Open House, tonight!


The Friends of the Shelter are sponsoring a Christmas Open House at the Bluffton Animal Shelter, 1 to 4 p.m., tonight. The event will offer tours of the facility and raffle opportunities as well as refreshments for guests.
Ooh La La Pet Spa and Angela’s Rooming and Grooming both donated a gift basket containing treats and pet supplies that will be raffled off on during the Open House event. The other raffle comes from area veterinarians who are offering free vaccinations and physicals. Tickets for each raffle are just $1.
Although no adoptions will take place during the Open House, guests will be able to view the facilities and meet the many cats and dogs looking for their forever homes. Adoptions will resume the following Monday.
The shelter will also be collecting gifts for the animals to be placed under their Christmas tree. Bluffton Animal Shelter Director Tina Morris said, if last year’s success is any indication of what the animals can expect this Christmas, the Shelter will be bursting at the seams with holiday generosity.
“Last year, so many people brought donations that there was no room left in the foyer,” she said. While the greatest need at the Shelter right now is for large dog collars and leashes, a complete list of needed items is included below.
Among the items needing to be donated: treats, toys, large dog collars, leashes, blankets and towels, cat litter (non clumping), cat scratching posts, Kuranda Beds for dogs (www.kuranda.com), pet shampoo, pet combs and brushes, grooming clipper blades (size 5, 10, 30 & 40 for Oster A-5 clippers), Advantage Flea Treatment (for large dogs), kitten and puppy canned food (for unweaned babies), paper towels, Pine-Sol, Windex, bleach, laundry soap, and dish detergent.
For more information about the Open House or to donate items, contact the shelter at 824-6063.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Low Cost Spay/Neuter Clinic

Dr Kruse will be having 4 spay/neuter clinics in Feb. at the Bluffton Animal Shelter for a special reduced price. The dates for the clinics will be Feb, 1st, 8th, 15th and the 28th. The price will be $25.00 per cat. Vaccines are optional at the price of $35.00 Call the Bluffton Animal Shelter for more information on how to schedule an appointment. 824-6063

BHS Exchange Students



Bluffton High School has 10 exchange students representing six different countries. Barb Barbieri sat down with them this week to learn a little about how they are enjoying Bluffton and what holiday traditions they celebrate at home.

CAC Festival of Trees

Barb Barbieri visited the Creative Arts Council Festival of Trees on Friday and captured this video.


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Mike Kracium talks Common Council




Video by News-Banner Editor Dave Schultz

Remember Our Troops at Christmas

Add these names to your Christmas card list this year. Tell them their friends and neighbors in Bluffton and Wells County appreciate their efforts.



CW5 John Phillabaum
Unit 931003 TFTZ
APO AE 09391

HN Ferguson, Elrie V
2/9 G Company
Unit 74130
FPO AE 09510-4130

SPC Kent D. Chavis
CMR 415 Box 4673
APO AE 09114

Lcpl Gardner, Benjamin
3D MED BN 3D MLG
Unit 38447
FPOAP 96604-8447

Shaile Perry
8150 Gibson Blvd
Rm E107
Kirtland AFB, NM 87116
Pfc Preston Lewis
Eeri comp 3rd LAR
3D LAR BN unit 41695
FPO AP 96427

Cpl Green C.A.
CLB-2 H-S Co.
Unit 73960
FPO AE 09510-3960

SGT Nathan McCartney
FOB Wilson
428th En Co/863rd En Bn
APO AE 09370

SPC Ryan J Habig
C co 1-14 IN
FOB Warrior
APO AE 09338


Do you know of a local serviceman or servicewoman who won’t be home for Christmas? Submit their name and complete mailing address to: The News-Banner, P.O. Box 436, Bluffton, IN 46714; or via fax: 260-824-0700; or vial email: calendar@news-banner.com; or drop off at our office at 125 N. Johnson Street. (24-hour drop slot at front door).
We will publish their names and addresses in the News-Banner as they are received. We encourage our readers to send them a card. Standard cards that take a 44 cent postage; non-standard sized cards should be taken to the post office to be weighed. Cards mailed to service members stationed overseas should be mailed by Dec. 10, so please submit addresses as soon as possible. New names will appear in bold as they are received.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Friends of the Shelter, Open House, Saturday

The Friends of the Shelter will once again be sponsoring a Christmas Open House at the Bluffton Animal Shelter. The event, which will take place this Saturday, Dec. 11, from 1-4 p.m., will offer tours of the facility and raffle opportunities as well as refreshments for guests.
The Shelter will also be collecting gifts for the animals to be placed under the Shelter's Christmas tree. If last year's success is any indication of what the animals can expect this Christmas, the Shelter will be bursting at the seams with holiday generosity. "Last year, so many people brought donations that there was no room left in the foyer," Bluffton Animal Shelter Director Tina Morris said. While the greatest need at the Shelter right now is for large dog collars and leashes, a complete list of needed items is included below.
Several raffles will take place on the day of the event, among them gift baskets from both Ooh La La Pet Spa and Angela's Rooming and Grooming, as well as free vaccinations and physicals from several local veterinarians. Tickets for each raffle will be $1.
Although no adoptions will take place on Saturday, guests will be able to view the amazing facilities as well as meet the many cats and dogs looking for their forever homes. Adoptions will resume the following Monday.
All are encouraged to take part in this holiday event to add a little hope to the lives of the homeless animals of Bluffton.

Donations Needed : treats, toys, large dog collars, leashes, blankets and towels, cat litter (non clumping), cat scratching posts, Kuranda Beds for dogs (www.kuranda.com), pet shampoo, pet combs and brushes, grooming clipper blades (size 5, 10, 30 & 40 for Oster A-5 clippers), Advantage Flea Treatment (for large dogs), kitten and puppy canned food (for unweaned babies), paper towels, Pine-Sol, Windex, bleach, laundry soap, and dish detergent.


Kids Become "Friends of the Shelter"

If you can't make it to the Bluffton Animal Shelter Open House on Dec. 11, there's another opportunity to help the animals this holiday season. Also on Saturday, a group of local cub scouts will be set up in front of the Bluffton Wal-Mart from 10-12:30 selling Christmas stockings for pets. The stockings will contain dog or cat treats and will sell for $2 each. All of the proceeds will benefit the Shelter.
Although the scouts could not make this an official scouting event, they felt strongly enough about the cause that they're going ahead with it on their own. Come out to support this double cause.

Southern Wells Alumni banners

Commemorative banners were hung in the Southern Wells Raider Dome Friday night in honor of the alumni of Petroleum (Nottingham), Chester Center, Liberty Center and Jackson Center. News-Banner Editor Glen Werling and News-Banner Intern Marci Mettler were there to capture the action on their Flip Ultra video cameras.











Monday, December 6, 2010

Festival of Trees!

The Festival of Trees, brought to you by the Wells Creative Arts Council, created a wonderful glow on the banks of the Wabash River Friday night. News-Banner Entertainment Editor Barb Barbieri used her handy Flip Ultra digital video camera to capture a few choice moments at the event.










Chamber of Commerce Open House!

Mark Your Calendars....
"A Harvest of Health"
Open House & Business After Hours
Thursday, December 16th
5:00 to 6:30 pm

Join us for an evening of networking and fellowship while sampling the
many treats and goodies available at....

A Harvest of Health Nutrition and Wellness
760 N. Main Street
Bluffton, Indiana

Door Prizes awarded at 5:45 pm

Chamber Prize is up to $125.00 in Chamber Bucks

All Chamber Members Entered......
BUT you must be present to win!

Adopt-A-Pet


Sanford is a 7 year old Min Poodle, male. Friendly but needs home with NO small children.


Kipper is a 1 year old Lhasa-Apso, male. Very friendly guy!


Oscar is a 4 year olf Maltese, male. Very friendly lilttle guy!


**We have several cats that are fixed and/or declawed for adoption. Their adoption fee is only $10.00
For more information call the Bluffton Animal Shelter 824-6063

Friday, December 3, 2010

Holiday shopping safety tips listed

You know the holiday shopping season is upon us when surplus Halloween candy is on sale, and there’s too much leftover turkey in the fridge. Unfortunately, while most of us are thinking about pumpkin pie and Black Friday bargains, thieves are scheming to take advantage of unlocked cars, unattended houses, and debit/credit numbers flying around the Internet.

Thieves seek targets that are quick and easy to hit. However, by following a few common sense tips, you can make your car, home and self look like a less appealing target.

When shopping in public places, consider:

• Shop during daylight hours, or park in well-lit, high-traffic areas.

• Leave personal valuables at home. If you must leave valuables in your car while shopping, hide them out of sight-in the trunk or stowed under a seat.

• Always lock your car, and close the windows and sunroof.

• Dress casually, and avoid wearing expensive jewelry.

• Avoid carrying large amounts of cash, and pay for purchases with checks or credit cards when possible.

• Beware of strangers approaching you for any reason. Con artists try various methods of distracting you, while their partners find ways to part you from your valuables.

• Keep a record of all credit card numbers in a safe place at home so that you can contact your credit card provider immediately if a card is lost or stolen.

Your home is another vulnerable spot. Whether making a three-hour trip to the mall or going out-of-state to visit Grandma and Grandpa, don’t let the holiday rush make you careless. Your primary goal is to make your house appear occupied.

While away from home:

• Have a neighbor watch your house and pick up mail.

• Keep lights on automatic timers, and keep curtains closed.

• Leave a radio or television on, so the house sounds occupied.

• Don’t leave holiday gifts or household valuables visible through windows.

• Don’t brag to friends on Facebook or other social media websites that you are out of town.

Finally, when shopping online, continue to apply common sense security:

• Shop secure websites only-those that have visible SSL certificates.

• Shop sites you are familiar with, such as the website of your favorite retail store, or a site frequented by people you know.

• Before visiting new websites, read shopper reviews about the sites.

• Use credit, not debit-especially if your credit card offers buyer protection. The vulnerability of a debit card is that it provides a direct line into your bank account. If a scammer gains access to your debit card number and password, he or she can quickly empty your bank account. By contrast, potential loss via credit card loss is limited by card protection.

Extension Homemaker Christmas Chorus

News-Banner Entertainment Editor Barb Barbieri attended the recent Extension Homemaker luncheon and filmed this wonderful video of the performances, including Arlene Stoller on piano and the Extension Homemaker Chorus.









Thursday, December 2, 2010

Library offers unique ways to talk to family this Holiday Season

WCPL Release:

For most of us, spending time with family and friends is an important part of our holiday celebrations. But in today’s society, coordinating all the family members’ schedules or traveling long distances to visit loved ones can be difficult or next to impossible.

The Wells County Public Library offers a unique way for people in this situation to communicate using in-house netbook computers with wireless internet access, web cameras, and Skype capabilities that allow users to both see and talk to family online.

“The updated netbooks have helped the library keep up with the ever-growing demand for computer access at the library,” Stephanie Davis, Director of the Wells County Public Library, said. “Everything is going online – job searching and application, federal assistance, auto registration, tax filing, and even communication with our families and friends. It seems that the library can never have too many computer stations.”

The sixteen netbooks were purchased thanks to a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Anyone can borrow them to use inside the main library or the Ossian branch, as long as they have an active library card and valid driver’s license.

“The portable netbooks are great for those who need a longer time period, a quiet setting or need to work in a group,” Davis said. “Patrons with laptops have always been able to use the wireless connection anywhere in the library; now all adults will have that opportunity.”

In addition to internet access, the netbooks have basic word processing software and will be upgraded in the next few weeks to include Microsoft Office 2010.

According to Christine Will, Systems Administrator at the Wells County Public Library, the netbooks can also be used to watch DVDs and allow users more freedom when looking for information online or performing general tasks.

“Due to network security in the library, certain Web sites and software are restricted on our public access computers,” Will said. “The netbooks connect to a separate wireless network, so patrons who are unable to accomplish certain tasks on our other computers can use the netbooks. The netbooks are then restored to their original configuration once they are rebooted.”

Complete information on how you can borrow a netbook to communicate with family or for general use is available at the front desk at either branch of the Wells County Public Library. For more information about the library, it’s services and programs, visit www.wellscolibrary.org or call 260-824-1612.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Random Acts of Kindness Day

Found this today on Facebook:

David's 2nd Annual
Pay It Forward Day
December 1st, 2010


‘Tis the Season! A random act of kindness goes a long way so…

PAY IT FORWARD!!!

What can you do?
ON DEC. 1st...
• Pay for someone’s cup of coffee…
• Buy someone some groceries…
• Get the next person’s gas…
• Help someone out…
• Donate something…
• Be creative!!!

When you do something for someone there’s a good chance they’ll do something for someone else. If not, at least you’ve done a good deed for someone.

So on December 1st share some kindness and spread some joy! It can be as little as a few dollars or as much as you want. No one needs to know!

Join me, won’t you?

(I'm trying to make this a national event so spread the word. Maybe one day it'll be a nationally recognized day!)

I won't be offended if you don't decide to participate, but please... spread the word!

Animal Shelter Open House, Dec. 11


The Friends of the Shelter are sponsoring a Christmas Open House at the Bluffton Animal Shelter, 1 to 4 p.m., Dec. 11. The event will offer tours of the facility and raffle opportunities as well as refreshments for guests.
Ooh La La Pet Spa and Angela’s Rooming and Grooming both donated a gift basket containing treats and pet supplies that will be raffled off on during the Open House event. The other raffle comes from area veterinarians who are offering free vaccinations and physicals. Tickets for each raffle are just $1.
Although no adoptions will take place during the Open House, guests will be able to view the facilities and meet the many cats and dogs looking for their forever homes. Adoptions will resume the following Monday.
The shelter will also be collecting gifts for the animals to be placed under their Christmas tree. Bluffton Animal Shelter Director Tina Morris said, if last year’s success is any indication of what the animals can expect this Christmas, the Shelter will be bursting at the seams with holiday generosity.
“Last year, so many people brought donations that there was no room left in the foyer,” she said. While the greatest need at the Shelter right now is for large dog collars and leashes, a complete list of needed items is included below.
Among the items needing to be donated: treats, toys, large dog collars, leashes, blankets and towels, cat litter (non clumping), cat scratching posts, Kuranda Beds for dogs (www.kuranda.com), pet shampoo, pet combs and brushes, grooming clipper blades (size 5, 10, 30 & 40 for Oster A-5 clippers), Advantage Flea Treatment (for large dogs), kitten and puppy canned food (for unweaned babies), paper towels, Pine-Sol, Windex, bleach, laundry soap, and dish detergent.
For more information about the Open House or to donate items, contact the shelter at 824-6063.


If you can't make it to the Bluffton Animal Shelter Open House on Dec. 11, there's another opportunity to help the animals this holiday season. The next two Saturdays, Dec. 4 and 11, a group of local boy scouts will be set up in front of the Bluffton Wal-Mart from 10-2 selling Christmas stockings for pets. The stockings will contain dog or cat treats and will sell for $2 each. All of the proceeds will benefit the Shelter.
Although the scouts could not make this an official scouting event, they felt strongly enough about the cause that they're going ahead with it on their own. Come out to support this double cause.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Let your voice be heard! (Choose a NWCS calendar)

Northern Wells Community Schools has options when it comes to their 2011/2012 school calendar and they want your opinion. Review the three possible calendars and choose your favorite: http://www.nwcs.k12.in.us/

Remember Our Troops at Christmas


Add these names to your Christmas card list this year. Tell them their friends and neighbors in Bluffton and Wells County appreciate their efforts.

SPC Kent D. Chavis
CMR 415 Box 4673
APO AE 09114

Lcpl Gardner, Benjamin
3D MED BN 3D MLG
Unit 38447
FPOAP 96604-8447

Shaile Perry
8150 Gibson Blvd
Rm E107
Kirtland AFB, NM 87116

Pfc Preston Lewis
Eeri comp 3rd LAR
3D LAR BN unit 41695
FPO AP 96427
Cpl Green C.A.
CLB-2 H-S Co.
Unit 73960
FPO AE 09510-3960

SGT Nathan McCartney
FOB Wilson
428th En Co/863rd En Bn
APO AE 09370

SPC Ryan J Habig
C co 1-14 IN
FOB Warrior
APO AE 09338

Do you know of a local serviceman or servicewoman who won’t be home for Christmas? Submit their name and complete mailing address to: The News-Banner, P.O. Box 436, Bluffton, IN 46714; or via fax: 260-824-0700; or vial email: calendar@news-banner.com; or drop off at our office at 125 N. Johnson Street. (24-hour drop slot at front door).
We will publish their names and addresses in the News-Banner as they are received. We encourage our readers to send them a card. Standard cards that take a 44 cent postage; non-standard sized cards should be taken to the post office to be weighed. Cards mailed to service members stationed overseas should be mailed by Dec. 10, so please submit addresses as soon as possible. New names will appear in bold as they are received.

Optimist Club announces essay contest

Bluffton Optimist Club is once again taking part in Optimist International’s annual essay contest.
The contest is open to all students in Wells County, including those who are home-schooled or who attend private or parochial schools.
Contestants must be no older than 19 as of Dec. 31, 2010 and they must write 700-800 words on the official topic “How my Education is the Key to a Successful Future.”
Appplication forms and rules for the contest are available in the Main Office at each of the county’s three high schools, as well as Farm Credit Services located on Bluffton’s north side.
The deadline for returning applications and completed essays is Friday, Feb. 11, 2011.

WCPL set to have a German-themed Christmas Open House on Dec. 14

WCPL Release:

The Wells County Public Library will be having its annual Christmas Open House on Tuesday, December 14 from 6:30-8 p.m. Drop in anytime throughout the evening to listen to songs, stories, and enjoy holiday refreshments. Don’t be surprised if you spot a few people wearing lederhosen, since this year’s theme celebrates the Christmas traditions of Germany.

More than 30 members of the Fort Wayne Männerchor/Damenchor (man and woman choir) will be performing traditional German Christmas carols and folk songs in the main library beginning at 7 pm. The Fort Wayne Männerchor und Damenchor is the second oldest German singing society in Indiana, tracing its history back to the founding of the Fort Wayne Sängerbund on October 4, 1869.

Before the music starts, children can meet in front of the “starry night” storytime room at 6:30 pm to listen to some popular Christmas stories. Just like German tradition, the children can leave their shoes outside the storytime room in hopes of a small treat from St. Nicholas.

Throughout the evening you can enjoy holiday refreshments and browse the library for holiday books, magazines, movies, music, and more.

No registration needed. Free event! For more information call the Wells County Public Library at 260-824-1612 or visit www.wellscolibrary.org.


Schedule of Events:

6:30-7:00 pm: children’s Christmas stories in the storytime room

7:00 - 7:50 pm: Fort Wayne Männerchor/Damenchor performance

7:00 pm: refreshments served

Throughout the evening: browse the library for your holiday materials


The Fort Wayne Männerchor/Damenchor will be performing at the Wells County Public Library’s annual Christmas Open House on December 14. Stay for an entire evening of German Christmas carols, folk songs, children’s stories, and holiday refreshments. Event is free and open to everyone in the community.

Mad Ants come to Bluffton

The Bluffton Parks & Recreation Dept. partnered with the Mad Ants Basketball organization to host a basketball clinic and family game night last night (Sunday, November 28th). Pictured below are the kids that spent an hour with players and coaches prior to their game with the Bay City Hawks.



Group picture of the families that attended the game following the kids clinic.
A great time was had by all and we plan to offer it again for the community.


Group photo: (front L-R) Victoria Valentine, Jordyn Cummins, Kollin Randall, Caleb Stacy, Madison Berry, Jacob Geisman, Jordin Geisman, Landon McClish (middle row L-R) Kyle Stacy, Zachary Cummins, Logan Baumgardner (back row L-R) Mad Ant Coach Derek Kahn, Player: Obi Muonell, Coaches Dave Fox and Steve Gansey

Monday, November 29, 2010

Santa comes to Bluffton



News-Banner Editor Dave Schultz visited with Santa Claus Friday night as the Big Man arrived in Bluffton just in time to kick-off the holiday season.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Christmas Lights Go On In Bluffton

Mayor Ted Ellis led the countdown on the courthouse plaza Friday evening as the Christmas lights were officially turned on. 
 
Also, I have included a glimpse of the display at Pickett's Run - all the lights that used to be at the wastewater plant have been moved to here this year, and Mayor Ellis encouraged everyone to check out the new display. 
 
Don't forget to shop local over the holiday period - as Mayor Ellis reminded us "If we don't have it in Bluffton, you don't need it all that bad."
 

Christmas in the Mansion






Visit the Wells County Historical Society Museum is hosting "Christmas in the Mansion." Visit the museum, 420 W. market St., for a wonderful stroll back in time. View more than two dozen locally decorated Christmas trees now on display.

The museum will be part of the Psi Iota Xi Sorority House Tour, 1 to 5 p.m, Dec. 4 & 5. Tickets are $5.

You can also visit free:

3 to 7 p.m., Dec. 11
2 to 6 p.m., Dec. 12
3 to 7 p.m., Dec. 18
2 to 6 p.m., Dec. 19

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Collecting for Good



Kingdom Academy and Bluffton Elementary both collected hats and gloves, coloring books, socks and personal items for our upcoming Christmas week at the Wells County Food Bank. Southern Wells and Lancaster also collected.

(pic one left to right)
Dennis Gerber, Liana Reinhard, Gretchen Moser and Payton Beeks

(pic two left to right)
Ginny Vogel, Apryl Colon, Sydney King, Tim Larson and Caleb Stacy

Fort Wayne Gingerbread Houses




Barb Barbieri was there for the eating of the gingerbread house in Fort Wayne.....(did I say eating?)

His plane flies, but he doesn’t


Air Force Lt. Christoper Reusser is a pilot, but he doesn’t actually fly anywhere.

Reusser, 25, was born and raised in Bluffton. Today he pilots unmanned aerial vehicles from a remote base outside Las Vegas. The vehicles he controls patrol the skies over Iraq and Afghanistan, providing security and reconnaissance for troops on the ground.





Seeking Santas

Currently the Creative Arts council is seeking artistic renditions of Santa Claus for the next exhibit to be featured at the Balentine Gallery at the Arts Commerce & Visitors Centre, Dec. 10-31.
If you are a stained glass, ceramic or visual artist, please add one of your creations to the exhibit. To make arrangements call (260) 824-5222 or email a photo of the piece to cac@adamswells.com

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Support our Troops!

Do you know of a local serviceman or servicewoman who won’t be home for Christmas? Submit their name and complete mailing address to: The News-Banner, P.O. Box 436, Bluffton, IN 46714; or via fax: 260-824-0700; or vial email: calendar@news-banner.com; or drop off at our office at 125 N. Johnson Street. (24-hour drop slot at front door).
We will publish their names and addresses in the News-Banner as they are received. We encourage our readers to send them a card. Standard cards that take a 44 cent postage; non-standard sized cards should be taken to the post office to be weighed. Cards mailed to service members stationed overseas should be mailed by Dec. 10, so please submit addresses as soon as possible. New names will appear in bold as they are received.


Add these names to your Christmas card list this year. Tell them their friends and neighbors in Bluffton and Wells County appreciate their efforts:

SGT Nathan McCartney
FOB Wilson
428th En Co/863rd En Bn
APO AE 09370

SPC Ryan J Habig
C co 1-14 IN
FOB Warrior
APO AE 09338

Monday, November 22, 2010

Adopt-A-Pet


Keagan is a 3 month old Orange Tiger DSH, male


Simba is a 3 month old Orange Tabby DLH, male


Sanford is a 7 year old Min Poodle, male



*All are very sweet and loving!

**We have several cats that are fixed and/or declawed for adoption. Their adoption fee is only $10.00
For more information call the Bluffton Animal Shelter 824-6063

Friday, November 19, 2010

Creative Arts Center Volunteer Luncheon and Awards



object width="480" height="385">















OES Spell Bowl champions

Ossian Elementary School came in first during Thursday's 18th annual Purdue University Regional Spell Bowl competition. They went to finish 32nd out of 113 schools statewide. Congratulations to the students, teachers and parent volunteers!








Thursday, November 18, 2010

Veteran's Day



To celebrate Veteran’s Day, Northern Wells Middle School and Southern Wells Elementary held a special breakfast for service men and women. Students were asked to invite veterans to breakfast where each veteran was recognized and spoke of their branch of service and any honors received by each serviceman.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

NWCS Renovation Project

Watch and listen as the extent of a proposed renovation project at Northern Wells Community Schools and its funding source are explained during Tuesday's NWCS board meeting.



Monday, November 15, 2010

Wells County Public Library Most-Popular Reads for October

Looking for a great book to read? Stop by the Wells County Public Library and pick up one of the most popular books checked-out during the month of October.

Non-Fiction:
• The Dutch Delight: A Collection of Recipes from the Bluffton, Indiana Apostolic Churches
• Christmas. Book 12, content and artwork by Gooseberry Patch
• White House Diary by Jimmy Carter
• Restore. Recycle. Repurpose. by Randy Florke
• The Reluctant Entertainer by Sandy Coughlin

Fiction:
• The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
• Family Ties by Danielle Steel
• Santa Fe Edge by Stuart Woods
• Burn by Nevada Barr
• The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks
For information about upcoming event at the library visit www.wellscolibrary.org

Adopt-A-Pet(s)


Wyatt is a 1 year old Orange DLH neutered male


Chloe is a 6 month old Bassett/Dachshund mix female.


Bandito is a 6 year old Orange/white DSH, neutered and declawed male.


**We have several cats that are fixed and/or declawed for adoption. Their adoption fee is only $10.00
For more information call the Bluffton Animal Shelter 824-6063

Bluffton Parks Department Turkey Shoot


Annual Turkey Shoot Saturday Nov 20th at 4:30 p.m. in City Gym Age Groups: 8-9, 10-11, 12-13.
Each participant is allowed 10 free throws from a standard foul line. Winners get a free frozen turkey. Children 9 and under will use the 8 foot goal.
All participants MUST pre-register by calling the park office at 824-6069 by Friday Nov 18th. Cost $1 each

Friday, November 12, 2010

Wells County Public Library continuing to collect canned food for the Wells County Food Bank

Wells County Public Library Release:

Author W. Clement Stone once said, “If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share.” From now until the end of November, the Wells County Public Library would like to give you an opportunity to show how thankful you are by sharing with others in our community. The library has teamed up with the Wells County Food Bank to take up a collection of canned and non-perishable food.
Just inside the doors of the Bluffton and Ossian libraries, are boxes for your food donations. On November 30th, our staff will be delivering these contributions to the Food Bank where your generosity will go to help families in our area. Don’t miss this opportunity to remember the Thanksgiving season and share with families in our area who could use a helping hand.

Local Youth Workers Honored




Area youth workers received a big “thank you” Wednesday afternoon.

Mayor Ted Ellis and staff from the Wells County Youth Service Bureau, Family Centered Services, thanked area youth workers with coffee and cookies at the Mayor’s office. This followed a Proclamation by Mayor Ellis naming November 10, 2010 as ‘Thank a Youth Worker Day” in Bluffton.

In November communities, organizations, and caring people from around the globe join together for an international day of celebrating and honoring youth workers. Governments are making official proclamations, networks and organizations are holding celebrations, and leaders and other individuals are taking time out to call, write and personally say “thank you” to youth workers who are such a valuable and often unsung force in their communities.

According to the National Collaboration for Youth, a youth worker is an individual who works with or on behalf of youth to facilitate their personal, social and educational development and enable them to gain a voice, influence and place in society as they make the transition from dependence to independence.

“Everyone can point to a youth worker who had an impact in their life, formally as part of a youth serving organization or informally as a coach, mentor, or friend,” stated Brian Durand, 2010 co-chairman of the Thank a Youth Worker steering committee.

“We need to thank those who mentor our youth and celebrate their contributions to our communities.” he said.

Dollars for Scholars $5 Tervis Tumblers


Support Dollars for Scholars and get a good deal on a great Tumbler. JUST $5 while supplies last. Call Norm Kain, 824-5914 or Dave Poff, 824-0872.

Bluffton Recycling gets 10,000th dollar



Frank Shanly was there this morning when the Bluffton Recycling Center received its 10,000th $1 donation.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Southern Wells honors veterans












Students and faculty at Southern Wells Jr./Sr. High School honored local veterans as part of their annual Veterans Day program this morning. Southern Wells band and Southern Wells Show Choir provided musical accompaniment and the name of every veteran in attendance was read aloud.

LCES Fall Carnival











Saturday, Lancaster Central Elementary School students attended their annual fall Carnival. There were games and prizes for the students; and lots and lots of volunteers making it happpen. News-Banner Intern Taylor Goodpaster captured the event in a collection of photos:

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

House fire at 80 Sunset







Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Adopt-A-Pet (and spay/neuter them)




Still have a few spots still available on Nov 30th for the low cost spay/neuter day. The cost is $50.00 per cat. For more information call the Bluffton Animal Shelter 824-6063