On the Beat in Bluffton

Friday, February 26, 2010

SWES Wax Museum

I took lots of photos at Southern Wells Elementary School today for their Living Wax Museum. I also posted video (it's on the next post), but here are my extra pictures. These were just the students from the afternoon session, so my apologies to all the students who did the job during the morning session.

Southern Wells Wax Museum

Southern Wells Elementary School 6th graders participated in a living Wax Museum program today, the culmination of weeks of study about an assortment of historical figures.

I met George Washington, Amelia Earhart, Harry S. Truman, Sally Ride (she's a favorite of mine!) and even the actual John Deere.

Clubs for adults @ the library

There are clubs for all interests for adults at the Wells County Public Library. Why not join the club and make learning a lifelong activity? Pictured above: members of the Cookbook Club share recipes during the annual cookie exchange.

Learning is a lifelong activity, so why not make it fun? Join one of the many clubs for adults at the Wells County Public Library. From cooking, crafts and computers, there are clubs for all interests and it is a great way to make friends and discover more about our community. No registration is needed. Check out these upcoming spring meetings:

Good Things: March 8 and April 12 at 1 p.m. – Release your inner Martha with non-fiction books and activities about entertaining, home d├ęcor, crafts, gardening and more. Hands-on fun plus reviews of the latest home books and magazines. Meets the second Monday of each month at 1 p.m. with leaders Teresa Dustman and Lora Kieser.

Adult Computer Club: March 9 and April 13 at 1 p.m. – Beginners and experts are welcome to learn and help each other on the computer in a friendly round-table atmosphere. Bring your own laptop or share one of ours. Meets the second Tuesday of each month at 1 p.m. with leader Deb Perry.

Cookbook Club: March 9 and April 13 at 6:30 p.m. – The tastiest club at the library is a gathering of cooks who share recipes, cooking tips and review the newest cookbooks at the library. Members take turns co-hostessing these fun meetings. Meets the second Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. with leaders Judy Maxwell and Deb Perry.

Brown Bag Book Club: March 10 and April 14 at 12:10 p.m. – Discuss the book-of-the-month over lunch hour in this traditional club for book lovers. Call to find out the current read or just sit in and listen your first meeting. Meets the second Wednesday of each month from 12:10 to 1:10 p.m. with leaders Jennifer Martin and Stephanie Davis.

20-Something Book Club: March 15 at 7 p.m. – Young adults ages 19-29 gather to read great books, network and socialize. Call to find out the book of the month or just pop in for a visit. Meets the third Monday of each month at 7 p.m.

Christian Fiction Book Club: March 4 at 7 p.m. -- Two of the top 10 most-read fiction books at our library in 2009 were by author Karen Kingsbury. Because Christian fiction is so popular in this community, we are starting this new club so patrons can discuss their favorite reads. Join leader Stefanie Kipfer at this first introductory meeting.

For more information, call the Wells County Public Library at 260-824-1612 or visit online at www.wellscolibrary.org.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Bi-County Basketball winners

The Adams-Wells Bulldogs won first place in the Special Olympics three-on-three basketball competition this past Saturday in Grant County. Above is the team with their terrific throphy: (left to right) Coach Lisa Stiles, David Martin, Tony Pfister, Jamie Slack, Coach Coralee Bowley, and Amanda Elliott in front. Missing from the picture is Mike Komosa. Congratulations Bulldogs! (Photo by NHS Intern Devan Filchal)

Norwell FFA greets preschoolers

Preschool students from Jericho Advanced Training Center for Ministry visited the Norwell high School FFA petting zoo on Wednesday to get up-close and personal with the baby chicks, llamas, goats and pigs.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Family Math Night at LCES

Lancaster central Elementary School hosted Family Math night Tuesday. More than 80 students (parents and others in tow) attended the event, playing math-inspired games and learning to learn together.

Norwell band blows them away

Norwell Knights beat Jay County boys basketball team Tuesday night, inspired, no doubt, by the rousing music performed by the Norwell band.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

County wide Phone-A-Thon coming soon!

If your phone rings on Sat­urday it may very well be a local high school student rais­ing money for a great cause. The Bluffton-South­ern Wells Chapter and the Norwell Chapter of Dollars for Scholars will be holding their countywide fundraising phone-a-thon on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2010.
For the Bluffton-Southern Wells chapter, this will be the 19th year their phone-a-thon will be held. For Norwell’s chapter this year marks the fourth year return of the phone-a-thon program after a hiatus of sev­eral years.
In addition to seeking donations through phone calls, the program is sponsored by many area businesses.
All of the money raised during the phone-a-thon benefits students in Wells County. The chapters have been able to give a scholarship to every applicant. While most students seek scholarships for college educations, the organization has also funded trade school students, ranging from beauty school and cosmetology pro­grams, to funeral home or motorcycle repair programs.
If a call is picked up by voice mail or an answering machine, the calling student will leave a message and a mailing will be sent to the resident.
The Bluffton­/Southern Wells chapter typi­cally raises between $50,000 to $60,000 during the year of which between $10,000-12,000 comes from the annual phone-a-thon event.
Students from the Wells County public high schools will begin calling residents at 9 a.m. and the fund drive will end in the early afternoon hours.
Students have been asked to be very cordial in their requests for donations and the organization asks that the public give the stu­dents the same respect. Local students will be making the calls to help each other for a worthy program and not a telemarketer in a cubicle far away.
By making a donation, res­idents can help students offset some college tuition costs and stimulate their desire to con­tinue their education. One hundred percent of the money raised in Wells County will go to benefit local Wells County students.
To donate to Dollars for Scholars, contact any of the three high schools and ask for a guidance counselor or principal.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Bluffton fans know how to cheer!

Whether they are young or young, cheerleaders or fans, Bluffton basketball supporters know how to cheer their hearts out for their hometown athletes.

Daddy, Daughter, Disco!

Barb Barbieri covered the Daddy/Daughter Disco at Bluffton City Gym on Sunday. More than 300 people attended the annual event sponsored by the Bluffton Parks Department.

Little Sweethearts 2010 Contest

Reporter Patty Elwell attended the Little Sweetheart Contest Saturday, Feb. 20. She took a few pictures while she was there, of Saige Lambert and her family and the contest winners. Look for Patty's story in today's News-Banner and photos of the winners will run all week.


Smoah is a 7 month old DSH, male. he is very affectionate!

Lucy is a 3 month old Lab/Terrier mix, female. She will make a great family pet!

Call now: 824-6063

Friday, February 19, 2010

Pajama Day for Haiti

Lancaster central Elementary School students paid $2 to wear pajamas to school today. First grade student Kiersten Boots, 7, in Kelli Abbett's class suggested the idea (That's her wearing Minnie Mouse pjs' standing with Mrs. Abbett). The rest was easy. All the money they raise will go to UNICEF to support the Haitian children whose lives were disrupted by the recent earthquake.

It is Random Acts of Kindness Week, after all....

(You can donate to UNICEF here)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The most read books at WCPL

Do you ever wonder what everyone else is reading? Take a look at the top 10 books for adults checked out at the Wells County Public Library during the month of January 2010.
1: She Drives Me Crazy by Leslie Kelly
2: Noah’s Compass: a novel by Anne Tyler
3: Fearless Fourteen by Janet Evanovich
4: The Lost Symbol: a novel by Dan Brown
5. The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks
6: Ice: a novel by Linda Howard
7: Finger Lickin’ Fifteen by Janet Evanovich
8: This Side of Heaven by Karen Kingsbury
9: Take Two by Karen Kingsbury
10: Summer on Blossom Street by Debbie Macomber
Non fiction
1: Have a Little Faith: a true story by Mitch Albom
2: Easy makeovers: 101 Quick Design Fixes you can do in a Weekend by Michele Keith
3: When the Game was Ours by Larry Bird and Earvin “Magic” Johnson
4: Tropic of Capricorn: a Remarkable Journey to the Forgotten Corners of the World by Simon Reeve
5: Taste of Home: Comfort Food Diet Cookbook by the editors of Taste of Home
6: Remodeling a Kitchen by Sam Clark
7: Organizing Plain & Simple by Donna Smallin
8: Open: an Autobiography by Andre Agassi
9: The National Parks: America’s Best Idea: An Illustrated History by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns
10: Mennonite in a Little Black Dress: A Memoir of Going Home by Rhoda Janzen
Just have an active library card to check out books from the Library and the cards are free to county residents. Call the library at 260-824-1612 or stop by today.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Read-a-Thon at BHS

The Bluffton High School Book Review Club held their first ever Read-a-Thon Feb. 12-13. We began reading at 6 PM Friday night, took a pizza break for supper, then continued reading until 8 A.M. Saturday morning! The students were amazing and we've collected nearly $400 for new library books as a result. The students of our community are absolutely the best anywhere! (Submitted)

Diaper baby!

Natasha Baumgartner, a sixteen-year old Southern Wells sophomore, had a fantastic idea for a 4-H gift wrapping project. After seeing a “diaper baby” online, she decided to create a few of her own and won the Reserve Grand Champion at the 4-H fair.

But this aspiring artisan didn’t stop there. Much to the surprise and gratefulness of Keely Meade-Alstoft, Family Centered Services’ Closet and Mentor Mom Coordinator, Natasha donated two of her “diaper babies” to their cause.

According to FCS staff, the diaper babies have been a huge hit over at Family Centered Services. Keely says, “They make for great prizes and giveaways at Mentor Mom meetings and Closet functions.”

The Closet is a Family Centered Services program that assists families in our community by providing free clothing and necessities for infants and pre-school aged children. The Closet is open Thursdays from 10am to 3pm. For further information, please call (260) 824-8574.

BMS choir scores gold at Bellmont

These Bluffton Middle School students attended the Indiana State School Music Association with Elyse Breeding, choir director. They went to Bellmont and participated in Solo and Ensemble this year. Every one of them returned with a gold medal.

From left to right in the picture:

Back row: Lauren Brinneman, Macy Reiff, Hunter Okey, Sierra Steffen
Front row: Holly Bertsch, Elizabeth Walborn, Kaitlyn Schriver, Haley Hiday.

(Submitted Photo)

Car crash and fire injures three

Tuesday afternoon Wells County Sheriff's Department and Bluffton Fire Department responded to this car teetering off the edge of the culvert bridge at Hoosier Highway and Ash Road. The driver of the car lost control struck a utility pole then crashed through the guardrail. The driver and both passengers escaped the vehicle just moments before it caught fire. All three sustained minor injuries.
Firefighters had the blaze under control within minutes. Traffic was diverted around the scene while crews worked and later due to icy conditions.

Graffiti in Bluffton

Bluffton Police Department is investigating several reports of graffiti vandalism received yesterday afternoon. Buildings at Washington Park, Pizza King and Hotcakes were spray painted.
BPD does not believe the images are gang-related, despite their characteristic flourish.

(Photos by BHS Senior Nick Huffman)