Seward High students successfully captured the State Fair High School Sweepstake Championship trophy again this year at the 2016 Nebraska State Fair-based on entries and rankings in the competitions. The State Fair High School Championship Sweepstakes trophy was presented at the recent SHS Homecoming Convocation on Friday, Sept. 23 at 8:30 am before the annual Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival Author presentation. Coordinator for the Education Division of the Nebraska State Fair is Judi Harper of Grand Island.
The SHS High School students competed in most of the contests sponsored by the State Fair Education Division at the 2016 Nebraska State Fair-claiming 11 First Place Championships and numerous additional places and recognitions in the various educational competitions. The competed during the first week end of the State Fair in Grand Island, August 27 and 28-both on stage and in testing situations. The first place winners present were also honored and represented the students involved in the state fair activities and were presented the trophy on behalf of the State Fair.
The students won first place awards in HS Essay-Grade 11-12 Ben Galusha, HS Short Story-Montana Hill, HS Poetry Grade 11-12 Kaitlynn Smith, HS Poetry Recitation-Grade 9-12 Thomas Bosmeniel, HS Penmanship Grade 9-10 Serena Mc Bride, HS Penmanship Grade 11-12 Kenna Michaelson, HS Social Studies Grade 11-12 Evan Mettenbrink, HS Science Grade 11-12 Evan Mettenbrink, HS Cup Stacking Stacy Damanhoury, HS Shakespeare Monologue Thomas Bosmeniel, HS Community Service-SHS FCCLA Recycling Day, and the HS Freshman Quiz Bowl Team-Jarod Harris, Andrew Gokie, Austin Dobrusky.
Photo: First place winners in the education division of the Nebraska State Fair accepted the Best High School in Nebraska Sweepstakes competition at the Nebraska State Fair trophy. LR Stacey Damanhoury-First Cup Stacking, Thomas Bosmeniel-First “Poetry Out Loud” and First Shakespeare Monologue, Clarke Chandler-First FCCLA Community Service, Austin Dobrusky-First Freshman Quiz Bowl, BR LR Evan Mettenbrink-First High School Science Test and First High School Social Studies/ History/Geography test, Jared Harris-First Freshman Quiz Bowl, Andrew Gokie-First Quiz Bowl. The other students receiving first either have graduated or were not present for the convocation.
Seward hosted the State High School Literature Quiz Bowl in conjunction with the Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival on Wednesday, Sept. 21 at the Seward Civic Center. It was sponsored by the Nebraska English Language Arts Council (NELAC), the state affiliate of the National Council Teachers of English (NCTE). NELAC is the Nebraska English Teachers State Association and has sponsored this state quiz bowl for high school students for 18 years at the Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival.
The quiz bowl featured a morning session for the teams in a round robin format, placing teams of four students from schools of similar sizes against each other in rounds of questions based on literature. The sessions each lasted 20 minutes and featured 80 questions on the entire aspect of literature. Each school participated in four rounds in the morning and then, based on wins, loses and points generated, the teams ended the day with a single elimination tourney.
There were two tourneys in one-one for large schools and one for smaller schools. The questions for the contest are all computer generated and purchase from Academic Hallmarks in Colorado for the tourney and were specifically designed for this event.
The winners in the large school included First Place-Gretna High Team A coached by Andrea Hartman, Second Place-Bellevue East coached by Dave Bossman, Third Place Gretna High Team B and Fourth Place was Kearney Catholic High coached by Kathy Niebalski.
In the small school division, First Place was won by Hampton High coached by Regina Farris, Second Place went to Howells Dodge High coached by Traci Sindelar, Third Place winner was Friend High coached by Jake Wiese and Fourth Place was awarded to Oakland Craig High coached by Nancy Guenther of Oakland.
Schools participating in the contest included Hampton, Oakland-Craig, Howells-Dodge, Exeter-Milligan, Heartland of Henderson, Friend, Central City, Osceola, York, Seward, Bellevue East, Kearney Catholic, Milford, and Gretna. There were 24 teams total for the contest! Each winner and runner up team won a trophy and the top team all received engraved medallions from NELAC/NCTE.
Volunteers for the contest included readers for the questions –Kathy Niebalski of Kearney, Jake Wiese of Friend, Dave Bossman of Bellevue, Andrea Hartman of Gretna, Traci Sindelar of Howells-Dodge, Brandon Wright of Central City and Clark Kolterman of Seward.
SHS students serve as volunteers for the tourney and included Ryan Wall and Kiernan Baker as hosts and tally keepers, along with the timers, scorers and runners which included Brady Smith, Jack Yelden, Garret Kuss, Brady Smith, Jayden Germer, Wyatt Shafer, Jacob Spidell, Jarod Harris, Andrew Gokie, Austin Dobrusky, Sam Perry, Alondra Brooks, Sierra Clark, Daniel Ellingson. SHS Asst. AD, Charles Gebhardt served as the Quiz Bowl Master and Clark Kolterman assisted as the Tourney Coordinator.
Seward High had two teams at the contest and the SHS Team B placed 5th –winning three of the four matches in the morning and the fourth overall seed and losing in the semi-finals in the afternoon and the SHS Team A placed 6th, winning one match in the morning and one in the afternoon tourney and were the tenth seed.
SHS Team members in the tourney included Team A Zach Vacha-Captain, Joelle Dieckhoff, Janel Robertson, Kylyn Clawson, Rannon Lyons. SHS Team B included Grace Orwen –Captain, Jake Marshall, Nana Abenaa Wright, Sydney Erickson.
The GFWC Seward Woman’s Club hosted a noon lunch for the volunteers for the tourney-including the readers, student volunteers-timers, scorers and runners for the event.
The Seward Rotary honored Jake Marshall at their weekly Rotary Club meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 21 at noon at the Seward Jones National Bank and Trust auditorium in Seward during their luncheon meeting. The Rotary Club recognized Jake Marshall for his scholarship, leadership activities and his service to others. Jake is the son of Dorothy and Mitch Marshall of Seward. He was recognized and presented with a Rotary Banner, mementos on Rotary information and a Rotary Club book scholarship.
Jake is very involved in the Seward High School music activities-a leader in both the vocal and instrumental departments at SHS. He is currently serving as a drum major for the SHS Marching Band and two years as a section leader for the Marching Blue Jays. He is also a member of the SHS Jazz Band and Symphonic Band. Jake is a four year member/leader in the SHS Swing Choir, a member of the Select Choir, Mixed Choir and the 2015 All State Choir. He has participated in numerous special honor band and choir activities, including the Concordia University Musical Arts Day. He also has been cast a lead in the musical presentation every year of his high school career.
Jake is a member of the SHS National Honors Society-and served as the Class President three times during his high school years. He has been a member of the SHS Prom Committee and involved in various projects with the SHS Skills USA service and vocational organization-competing and named a State Medalist twice at the Skills USA State Conference.
He is a leader and co-captain of the SHS Speech team-double entered in duet and the drama (OID) team, along with the humorous prose literature event as well! He was a finalist at the State Optimist Speech Contest and participated in the Poetry Out Loud program, as well as the VFW Voice of Democracy Speech Contest. He was also very involved with the State Fair Education Contests and captured First Place in the High School History/Social Studies Test.
He has commanded leads in the two recent One Act plays at SHS that were involved in the competition contests and has received the Outstanding Actor Award at the Conference and District contests. He was the first runner up in the local HOBY leadership program and was one of the two Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA) recipients last year-sponsored by the Seward Rotary Club.
He is a summer member of the Concordia University Summer Chamber Youth Choir and the Seward Municipal Band.
Jake serves as the co-captain of the SHS Quiz Bowl team and participates in the UNL Math Day annually. He was the SHS Representative to Boys State, sponsored by the Seward American Legion Post #33.
Jake is an active member of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church in Seward and a strong voice of their youth program. He is in the church choir, band and serves as a cantor. He is also very active in their local God Parent Youth Group program at St. Vincent’s.
Jake currently works as a dietary aide at the Seward Memorial Hospital in Seward and has also been a longtime employee of the Rivoli Theater and Movie Place Video in the concession stand and has worked in the fields for Sloup-Thorell Detasseling Corporation.
In the area of “Service Above Self,” Jake has been involved in numerous activities as a volunteer working with young children, serving –for example, as a volunteer with the St. John Summer Horizon’s day camp program, along with serving as a camp counselor for the Outdoor Education program at the Middle School in Seward and he has spent many hours volunteering at the Olde Glory community theater facility in a variety of capacities.
His decision is not firm, but he may attend Nebraska Wesleyan and major in Physics, eventually becoming a Bio-Medical Engineer or a Chemical Engineer.
Jake was thanked for his high level of involvement at Seward High and in the community and is now a finalist for the annual Seward Youth Rotarian of the Year award and scholarship, sponsored by the Seward Rotary Club and announced at the annual spring awards program at Senior Night in the new Seward High Theater in May of 2017.
SHS Senior, Sydney Erickson is the first SHS Fine Arts Youth of the Month for the 2016-17 school year. She is a very involved high school student, centering on academics and the Fine Arts. She is the daughter of Scott and Brenda Erickson of Seward.
Sydney is very involved in the SHS Music program-focusing on the instrumental aspect of music. This is her first year as the SHS Drum Major for the SHS Marching Blue Jays! She has been a member of the marching band all four years of high school, also in the Symphonic Band, Percussion Ensemble and Wind Ensemble, along with the Mixed Choir at SHS. She has participated in numerous Honor Band activities during her career at SHS and part of the Concordia Musical Arts Day! She continues to receive top honors and always Superior ratings for her musical achievements and was also Rookie of the Year in the SHS Band her freshman year.
She is one of the lead seniors in the SHS Quiz Bowl program, and a member of the SHS Academic Decathlon Team in the Honors Division-serving as the co-captain! She is a leader in the SHS National Honors Society and has been a member since her sophomore year.
Sydney is a longtime member/leader with the SHS One Act program and is one of the leads in the current SHS competition one act play. She is also a leader in the SHS Speech Team –involved in Informative Public Address and Drama team as well. She was a State Qualifier in the Informative Speech contest for the NSAA last year as a junior. She participated in the Poetry Out Loud speech contest and the VFW Voice of Democracy Speech Contest at SHS. She received the Elks Speech and Debate award and has won many awards centered on her speech activities and projects.
Sydney is very involved in many aspects of her church-St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church in Seward and assists in a variety of their worship programs as well, along with their Godparent and youth programs at the church.
She has been involved with dance since 2004 and a member of the dance team at Shelly’s School of Dance in Seward and assists as a dance instructor at Shelly’s for a variety of levels of dancers as well. She is also a member of the Seward Municipal Band /City Band during the summer months.
She is always on the SHS Honor Roll and one of the academic leaders at SHS, with numerous academic awards and honors for her academic achievements in the classroom and being an academic leader in athletics as well.
“Sydney exemplifies the high level of involvement of the Arts at SHS and is an outstanding example a student devoted to the Arts and working to share her talent with others in the community, states Clark Kolterman, SHS One Act director. “She really reflects the high level of involvement many students have with the Arts at SHS and we are very proud to have her and her work ethic at Seward High!”
The SHS Fine Arts Department, the Seward Arts Council and the Seward Independent are please to sponsor, recognize, salute and honor Sydney Erickson the SHS September Fine Arts Youth of the Month!
Three Seward Middle School students earned awards at the recent Nebraska State Fair in Grand Island. Eighth grader Landon Nelson, fifth grader Krystyn Harris, and sixth grader Noah Fields took part in the Education Competitions against students from across the state. Nelson earned an 8th place ribbon in Cup Stacking and Honorable Mention in 6-8th grade math. Harris earned Honorable Mentions in both math and science in the 3rd-5th grade categories.
Fields earned first place awards in grammar, science, monologue, poetry recitation, short story, and poetry writing in the 3rd-5th grade categories. He also won fifth place in math, sixth in spelling, ninth in penmanship, and tenth in social studies in 3rd-5th grade. Fields also won the Brad Fossberg Outstanding Performer Trophy for Grades 3-8. He was awarded the Third Place overall Sweepstakes trophy for his outstanding performance at the two day competition!
Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Menze's third grade classes had some hands-on science fun with Mrs. Goracke last Friday at Seward Elementary.
The City of Seward delegation brought home more honors than any other community at the recent “Keep Nebraska Beautiful” Conference in Lincoln at the Garden Inn Hilton on Thursday, August 25, 2016-as the Seward area received six awards at the annual Keep Seward Beautiful Conference! The City of Seward was recognized with the “First-Runner Up” Award/Plaque- for the Under 10,000 population based on the nomination prepared by the GFWC Seward Woman’s Club-called the Deanie Anderson Outstanding Community Environmental Award. The Seward Chamber and Economic Development Partnership received the “First Runner up” award/plaque for the “Great American Clean-Up”-- “Recycle Day” for their annual, city wide clean-up last April and their outstanding recycling efforts with the Seward Recycling Center. The award nomination was prepared by the Keep Seward Beautiful Committee.
Seward High won “Award of Excellence” recognition for the SHS FCCLA environmental efforts with the annual Seward Recycle Day and they also won an Award of Excellence for the Recycling Efforts of the FCCLA at SHS and the program of recycling under the direction of Mr. Pat Piskorski and his classes, as they promote their recycling efforts at the Secondary level. The GFWC Seward Woman’s Club was also recognized with an “Award of Excellence” in the Civic/Non-Profit Group division for their numerous beautification efforts, such as the annual Arbor Day event and the various projects they support promoting beautification.
An “Award of Excellence” was awarded to the new Nebraska National Guard Museum in Seward for their various conservation methods with their new landscaping program, as well as the numerous conservation efforts used in the remodeling of the newly renovated museum-incorporating a variety, state of the art environmental programs to create a very sound, solid and “Green” museum that will conserve energy in every way possible! They were applauded and congratulated for their outstanding conservation methods and efforts!
Representing the community at the Keep Nebraska Beautiful Conference were Jean Kolterman-Chairman of the “Keep Seward Beautiful” Committee, Betty Galen, Project Chair of the GFWC Seward Woman’s Club, Sue McHugh of the Seward Chamber and Economic Development Partnership, Clarke Chandler and Shea Perry of the SHS FCCLA, County Commissioner Roger Glawatz and his wife Sharon, Gerry Meyer of the Nebraska National Guard Museum, Darin Krueger of the Nebraska National Guard Historical Society and Clark Kolterman-Chair of the Seward County Visitors Committee.