Sunday, July 2, 2017

Your reply to..."What are we going to do for the 4th of July???"

What a question...."What are you doing for July 4th?" Like it's your place to make the plans for a big are you going to do it????

It can be a tough one to answer...clearly you'd like lake activities, grilling, fireworks, but....where?

Right here in Valentine, Nebraska! There's everything you'd need right here to celebrate your July 4th holiday right. Not too far away either.

We have many amenities....

We have Merritt Reservoir...

We have the Niobrara River....

We have golf at Frederick Peak...

And of course several waterfalls!!!

As for the rest! We have that covered as well!

We have the parade at 11:00 a.m.

Because no July 4th is ever July 4th without a parade.

Immediately afterwards, head over to the Valentine High School where you can listen to the recitation of the Declaration of Independence that our forefathers wrote and signed. Because of their audacity - their bravery to fight a crown across the ocean - we have many freedoms to enjoy daily! George and Martha Washington are always there and do appreciate a helping hand.

You have opportunities now to head back to the water, get in that round of golf on the Tom Lehman and Chris Brands designed course...take a nap, or enjoy some terrific BBQ!

In the distance you may hear the roar of the engines who are competing in a smash 'em up,  bonafide, good old fashioned demolition derby!!! You can win prize money if you get there early enough and bid on the right car.

 Finally as the sky turns's time for the Lions Club sponsored Rockets Red Glare!

There are lots of ways to celebrate July 4th and now when someone asks, "Hey, what should we do for July 4th?" You have an awesome answer...and it's not too far down the road... "We're going to go to Valentine, Nebraska!!! With people who will make us feel right at home!!!"

Thank you in advance for coming to our celebration of America's 241st Birthday!

Remember and each of the sponsors  - click on their ad for more information to make your 4 season, family fun, the ticket for your Nebraska adventure!

Friday, March 10, 2017

What's going down in a Prairie Dog Town?

Do you ever wonder what's going down under a prairie dog town? It sounds like there should be a mayor, a grocery store, and of course a nursery.

That may all be true.

But to truly get a feel for what's going down in a prairie dog town, why not find out more from someone who has researched prairie dog towns!!! Alan J. Bartels is the assistant editor of Nebraska Life, a publication many of you are familiar with. Colorful stories of our state, vivid photography, and truly unique and fabulous people are brought to life in this bi-monthly magazine.

 He says, "I've always had an appreciation of wildlife. I grew up catching turtles and snakes. For 14 years, I have been guiding Sandhills crane tours on the Platte River at Rowe Sanctuary. I consider myself an advocate for wildlife in need of conservation. I also hunt and fish. Sometimes people think that is a weird contradiction. It's not. It's one thing to hunt a common species. It's an entirely different situation to turn a blind eye to species that are in peril. I've never understood why the mere mention of prairie dog raises tension in people. I know the usual arguments of competition for grass, holes livestock could step in, but it's important to understand that there can be a balance between man and wildlife."

In his first book, Alan shares a cute story of prairie dogs and the animals which rely on them. He said, "The book could just as easily be written about a bison, a turtle, bird or other animal. The message of the book is simply: that one person can make a difference. In the case of my book that one person is a young boy."

Alan, illustrator Hannah Segura and renown British primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace, Jane Goodall, worked on the book together. "During a meeting in a friend's cabin along the Platte River, Jane offered suggested changes to the text and drawings. She was very involved. Proceeds of the book will go to Jane Goodall's Roots and Shoots program."

You can find out more by going to

The book took Alan several years to complete as he continued working for Nebraska Life, as well as their other publications, Journey to Western Nebraska, and Explore Valentine.

After the book was held up by a publisher earlier in the process, Alan's boss, Chris Amundson at Nebraska Life, helped by making a contact with Mascot Books.

Alan is currently using a GoFundMe campaign to raise the money needed to print and market 3,000 copies. As an industry leader, Mascot Books print 400 children's titles yearly. "When the book is printed I will be responsible for marketing the book throughout Nebraska, and Mascot Books will market it across the rest of the nation."

"The prairie dogs were there long before us," Jane Goodall explained. "They're part of a wonderful, prairie world. Don't you think we should really try hard to protect these adorable little creatures? Thank goodness there are people working to conserve and restore the prairies, to make sure there are places for the prairie dogs and the many other creatures who depend on them for shelter and for food. I am so glad that my friend, Alan, decided to write this book. He cares passionately about trying to save the prairie world."

Did you know that prairie dogs once inhabited approximately 700 million acres? Currently they occupy less than one percent of their former range.

Alan said, "It doesn't take a biologist to realize that this keystone species is in trouble. Perhaps more importantly, dozens of other species rely on prairie dogs as food, and their burrows for shelter. Eliminating prairie dogs impacts those species as well."

Alan concluded by saying, "I love Nebraska and I love Nature. I capitalize the word Nature because I believe it is so important."

To help Alan's book become a reality and share What's going down in a Prairie Dog Town, visit: Alan's GoFundMe page.

Because there are nurseries for sure in a prairie dog town!!!

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Enjoying Valentine's snow days...from inside!!

Who loves 70 degree weather? Don't we all? That was where the temperatures were in Valentine, Nebraska, February 16 -22, 2017. Beautiful weather! But in February? 

Who loves snow days??? Don't we all? As quick as you can change your short sleeves for something warmer, the weather changed and left behind 14 (non-official) inches of snow at a startling rate of two inches per hour!!

This is Valentine's Main Street at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, February 23 - which is probably what February weather should look like. There was no school, and several businesses had closed for safety reasons. 

Looking south, there were only a  few cars parked on Main Street. But places to stop in and warm up!

Boots, coats, or hats anyone? 

In black and white, the FGL building looks like it may have when it was first constructed. In color, the awnings are bright blue, and without the snow, you can clearly see many updates. 

State, city, and county plows were out clearing as fast as the snow was falling! For that we are very thankful. This little girl was also clearing the walkway with her grandmother's help.  

Mail was still being delivered! Belated Valentines? 

The next day, it was nearly blue skies all the way! 

Snow was piled to the center of the road and being hauled away. Most of the side streets were cleared off as well. 

The storm left behind some Dr. Suess looking snow drifts though. With the cleared roadways, it was fun to get out and see them first hand. 

To think days prior to the snow, you could see and hear the rumble of motorcycles enjoying the springlike temperatures. Trees were beginning to bud out, and bulbs were forcing green tips through the soil. 

It's still a chilly day today, but the sun is creating icicles...

Who doesn't love a snow day? Perhaps you and a loved one could make some  sweet treats, or be creative in some way...paint, color, sew, read, and simply enjoy...because it won't be long and you'll be enjoying the spring blooms, butterflies, and returning birds. invites you to look through the website and plan your perfect 4 season, family fun, adventure! Click on our sponsor's ads and visit their websites to help you with your plans!!!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Bull on Main?!? Yes...February 11, 2017!!! Wear your boots!

That's the question: Bull on Main?!? 

The answer: Yes, if it's in February in Valentine, NE!!!! And the town welcomes you this coming Saturday, February 11, 2017!!!

The bulls on Valentine's Main Street is called simply The Bull Bash! It's time for ranchers to bring in new....uh...blood stock to integrate into other's herds;  this is the place they come to see the bulls, learn about their lineage along with visiting the equipment dealers. 

Some of the bulls are large - below, some are young like this one - above!

There's cowboys, real live, true-to-the-job, cowboys who attend the Bull Bash!

And care for these gentle giants!!

Who are actually pretty tame!

And are clearly rather curious! Howdy neighbor!!!

There's food for everyone! 

At different locations! Each with their own flair. 

 There's even a wine tasting event!!!! Which can sometimes be held with an art show...

Who doesn't look great sipping wine while checking out some of the best western art in the area? 

Suff for boys of all ages to check out! 

 Contests for young kids as well! This is about love after all! Love of the Sandhills. Love for our area ranchers who keep the hills pristine, and raise the best beef in the world, regardless of the weather conditions....below 0, they're out there...117 they're out there.

 This is the way Valentine, Nebraska shows the area's ranchers how much they're appreciated!

Youth often times use this venue as a way to raise funds for the Washington Focus Trip, bake sales, Girl Scouts sell cookies.....

And the local FFA hosts their annual Luck of the Draw! It's a great way to help the youth as well as get warm, have a beverage, it's another place to eat and visit with family and friends. 
It's held at the Bull Market and everyone is welcomed!

 For the ladies there are plenty of shops on Main Street for them to visit. Nelsen Furniture is hosting the annual Quilt Show. Judge your favorite!

 Come to the annual Bull Bash held in Valentine, Nebraska, February 11, 2017!!!!

Eye hope to see you there!!!

To find out more about the Bull Bash go to: Bull Bash, or pick up a copy of the Valentine Midland News for the schedule of events.

Be sure to get your honey something for Valentine's Day!!! More about that at: Cupids Mailbox!!!!!

 Make your Nebraska 4 Season, Family Fun, Sandhills Vacation plans now!