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Sen. Deb Fischer visits Superior

SHS talent show Tuesday night

Bethany Lutheran youths help start Backpack Program here

Theme of Victorian Festival parade will be 'The American Spirit'


Sen. Deb Fischer visits Superior

Deb Fischer, a Republican serving her first term in the United States Senate as a representative from Nebraska, used part of the Senate's Easter recess to visit with constituents in southern Nebraska and renew a college friendship.
Fischer told those who gathered in the Java Juice Cafe at 4 p.m. last Wednesday, that she had been a college roommate of the current mayor of Superior, Sonia Schmidt. Looking a Schmidt, Fischer said, "We watched our youngsters grow up via the pictures we exchanged at Christmas."
After meeting with constituents and answering their questions for about an hour, Fischer went on a walking tour of downtown Superior with Mayor Schmidt. Later that evening they were scheduled to have supper together and Fischer was to be a guest in the Schmidt home before heading west to appointments in other southern Nebraska communities. Earlier Wednesday she had been in Beatrice, Fairbury and Deshler. She visited Brodstone Memorial Hospital before stopping at the cafe.
Constituents shared a number of concerns and asked for the senator's help.
Fischer discussed the polarization that has developed across the country and said it wasn't limited to the Senate. She stressed the federal government should be a limited government. She said she supported clean air water but termed the EPA's current regulatory effort as ridiculous. If the proposals now being discussed are enforced she said the Sandhills cattle industry will be gone. Regulations should make sense and the proposed EPA water regulations do not. The senator said water belongs to the state, not the federal government.
Scott Boyles brought up regulations which are making it difficult for the bank he is employed by to make home loans. He said unnecessary regulations are adding $2,000 to the cost of a loan on homes valued under $20,000.
Because of current health care laws, he said Farmers & Merchants Bank was not hiring full-time employees. He said the laws were not improving health care but they were reducing the amount of money people could earn.
Fischer said she was opposed to the federal government being involved in education. She said education was best handled on the local level.
Asked about the current races for governor and the U.S. Senate in Nebraska she advocated becoming informed voters and getting acquainted with the candidates.

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SHS talent show Tuesday night
Superior Public Schools students in grades five through 12 are joining together to present a talent show Tuesday evening, starting at 7 o'clock.
The students are just this week submitting their registrations so the talent line-up is still in flux.
However, early registrations indicate there will be vocal and instrumental music numbers including duets and quartets.
The annual event is sponsored by the Superior High School student council. There will be a cookie intermission and the audience members will get to cast their votes for the best performance.
The event will be held in the high school gym.

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Bethany Lutheran youths help start Backpack Program here
By Kim Young
The United States is regarded as one of the wealthiest nations in the world; however, one in five people live in an "at risk" household. Choices are made between buying food and other baisc necessities such as rent, utilities and medical care. Childhood obesity is on the rise; but, the USDA estimates 16 million children will be affected by food hardship.
Those falling below the poverty level can seek assistance through three different government programs, SNAP, the former food stamp program, WIC (Women, Infants and Children) and the free or reduced school lunch and program. With the cost of living rising, students participating in the lunch program has grown to 18 million across the country.
Those needing assistance are no longer just the out of work, single parent homes. Senior citizens on fixed incomes are raising their grandchildren. Some households rely on income from minimum wage jobs. Even college students have become a part of those seeking help to meet financial and physical demands. Some fall through the cracks of not qualifying for federal programs.
The goal of the Backpack program is to meet the needs of at risk households by giving nutritious and easy-to-prepare food. It is especially essential on weekends, school vacations and during summer months when school is not in session.
The concept of the Backpack program was developed at Arkansas Rice Depot in Little Rock, Ark. A school nurse recognized hungry students complaining of stomach aches and dizziness. Teachers realized hunger was a bigger issue than other distractions students face.
In 1995, a pilot program was launched and in 2006 the National Council at Feeding America began the official national Backpack program. According to Feeding America, 30 million meals will be distributed each year. It operates in all 50 states, is discreet and free to participants. Backpacks with food are sent home with students at the end of the week or school session.
The program works through the cooperation of local schools, relief organizations and food pantries. It is a partnership that has been in place for more than 15 years. The main goal has remained "helping children and their families." When a student takes home a backpack, it not only impacts their life, but also the lives of younger siblings not yet in school. The program can be adapted to meet the needs of the families, while meeting national nutritional guidelines.
In Nebraska, Food Bank of the Heartland says in 2012-13, 59 percent of children provided with backpacks lived in rural areas of Nebraska and western Iowa.
The Backpack program began in Deshler in 2013-2014. About 14 families were helped. It is now the second year for the program. Two eighth grade students from Deshler Public Schools decided to reach out from their own community. Tori Schoof and Daniel Petersen, members of Bethany Lutheran Church, chose two projects to take on during the Lenten season leading up to Easter.
The first was to send prayer bookmarks and cards to the homebound in their congregation and also to donate money to the Backpack Food Program at the Deshler Public School. After learning of the interest among the faculty of Superior Public School in starting a similar program, they decided to also give the Superior School help in getting the program a good start with a monetary donation of $300.
Schoof and Petersen, along with their Sunday school instructor, DeeAnn Petersen presented a check to Megan McMeen, Superior Public School nurse and member of the wellness committee. McMeen has seen firsthand the immediate need for a program like this in Superior. She has seen how hunger can affect students. Students want to learn, but it can be difficult when they are hungry.
McMeen said she hopes the community of Superior and surrounding areas will donate money or food items. The items sent home in the backpack are specific. Each has to be microwaveable, easy to open and able to be eaten cold, so children can handle or prepare them.
Items sought for the program include peanut butter (12 oz.), sleeve of crackers, beans and franks (pop-top), beef ravioli, beef stew (pop-top can), chili with beans, any soups with veggies, cereal, instant oatmeal, fruit cups and vegetable cups, macaroni and cheese, ramen noodles, snack or trail mixes (individual packages), packaged cookies, crackers, snack size raisins, pudding cups, juice boxes, milk coupons, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, cereal and granola bars, and chicken or tunal meal kits.
Superior's backpack program is in an introductory phase, but McMeen encourages everyone to consider how they can help. For more information contact McMeen at her school email mmcmeen@superior
"The program will be new for Superior Public Schools in 2014-2015, with the help of the community, the school's wellness team, FBLA leaders and many more," McMeen said. "We can't thank the Deshler program enough for helping us get such a great start in changing our children's lives by helping to solve the problem of hunger."

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Theme of Victorian Festival parade will be 'The American Spirit'
Everybody loves a parade, even if there is a little road construction. Parades fill spectators with excitement and a sense of nostalgia.
The theme for the parade at this year's annual Victorian Festival will be "The American Spirit." Part of the parade will honor the Superior Volunteer Fire Department, which is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year.
Parades also symbolize an integral part of human culture and history. One
of the largest parades today is the Macy's Day Parade, which began in 1924. It was started as a tradition of using a parade for advertising. Local businesses are urged to utilize the Victorian Festival's parade as a way to advertise. People come together to socialize so why not take advantage of the opportunity and advertise your business?
The parade will be held Saturday, May 24, beginning at 1:30 p.m. Contact the Superior Chamber of Commerce office for a parade registration form (402-879-3419) or by email at
The parade will begin at 8th and Central, proceeding south to 4th and Central, then turn west. Beginning at noon on May 24, parade entry numbers may be picked up at Superior High School, 601 W. 8th Street. Late parade registrations will also be accepted.
Because of bridge construction on 8th Street, those heading to the high school to pick up their numbers will need to find an alternate route.

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