Testing the waters on a new student organization, the Orchard school takes pride in their new Junior High SkillsUSA Chapter.
Knowing that students would have the opportunity to compete in the program at the high school level, shop teacher Bob Evans took the initiative to help students realize and build their potential by establishing a junior high chapter of SkillsUSA.
In SkillsUSA, students are able to learn more about their passions, reach their potential, and receive valuable skills for their future. This organization gives students the ability to be leaders while working with others at a competitive level.
“I think like a pyramid starts with a big, wide, strong foundation. And that’s why I like to build a foundation. And when you’re in seventh grade, you are curious about a lot of things. You can gain mass quantities of information, sometimes you have more time, sometimes you don’t,” Evans said. “So, it's a place to start building from. Ultimately, we’d like to be state champions in high school and junior high. So, you have to start somewhere.”
With over 80 competitions, the Orchard team brought home the gold in opening and closing ceremonies. In this category, a group of students were required to assemble the SkillsUSA emblem while reciting the meanings behind each color and symbol from memory. This competition gives students the ability to showcase their speaking and memorization skills while gaining the idea of parliamentary procedure.
Placing individually, Hadley Cheatum brought another gold medal home in the math competition. Each accomplishment was cherished by the school, as staff welcomed the winners with treats and posters.
“When we came back, they had all of the signs made for us because Orchard is the best place to teach on the planet earth. I came in and couldn’t believe the signs they had made for our kids. It was so wonderful,” Evans explained.
Evans and the rest of the school is excited to see the success the chapter will find this next semester.
An Antelope County man had time in court last Wednesday for a number of issues.
William Anson was arraigned on charges of Burglary, a class IIA felony, possession of burglar tools, a class IV felony and being a habitual criminal on December 6.
According to court documents, Anson is accused of a number of incidents occurring between November 30 and December 2. Sometime between November 30 and December 2, he allegedly stole a chainsaw, multiple chains, a chainsaw bar tool, a socket set and a generator and fuel from a property near Orchard.
Then, on December 2, officers were again called to the property after a man, later identified as Anson, in a white Ford Explorer Sport Track was seen on the property attempting to steal fuel from a fuel tank. When confronted by the family, Anson fled the property in his vehicle. A shot was fired into the back tire, forcing the vehicle to crash and causing him to flee on foot. Officers searched for the man throughout the night before he turned himself in on December 3 at the Antelope County Sheriff’s Office.
Bond was set by Judge Donna Taylor for $25,000 and a hearing date was set for December 27 at 9:30 a.m.
Two Orchard graduates and their family fell victim to a house fire last Friday in Norfolk.
Greg and Jamie Dempster, along with their four children and two of their children's significant others, are displaced after a fire consumed their house at 610 S Fourth Street in Norfolk.
Greg is a 1996 graduate of Orchard Public Schools and Jamie is a 1994 graduate.
According to a news release from Fire Captain John Reding, overheating and stress from electrical wiring appear to be the cause of the fire.
The Norfolk Fire Division responded to a 911 call at 2:43 p.m. with concerns of smoke and fire coming from the attic. Upon the department’s arrival, the family had evacuated the home safely.
Firefighters were able to contain the fire to the upper floor which suffered from heavy smoke and fire.
Most damage was to the roof and second floor. The home suffered over $60,000 in damage, with many personal belongings unsalvageable.
There were no injuries to residents or firefighters during the incident. Fire Marshal Terry Zwiebel and Fire Inspector Nate Wortman conducted the investigation and determined the cause being electrical wiring in the wall and attic. NPPD, Black Hills Gas and the Norfolk Police Department assisted during the fire.
The GoFundMe page has been set up for the Dempster family.
Greg Dempster said the family appreciates all of the prayers and assistance they’ve received since the fire.
Two Orchard graduates and their family fell victim to a house fire this afternoon in Norfolk.
Greg and Jamie Dempster, along with their four children and two of their children's significant others, are displaced after a fire consumed their house at 610 S Fourth Street in Norfolk. Crews arrived on scene around 2:30 p.m. and were still on scene for much of the afternoon. Everyone escaped the house without harm.
The cause of the fire is still unknown at this time.
Greg is a 1996 graduate of Orchard Public Schools and Jamie is a 1994 graduate.
Orchard is hosting a HUGE holiday vendor event on Friday, Dec. 7, offering great holiday gift options in one location.
Held 5-8 p.m. at the St. Peter's Lutheran Church Fellowship Hall, vendors from the area will be gathered with great products and even better prices to make your holiday shopping easier.
Keep Collective, Norwex, Tastefully Simple, Shear Style LuLaRoe, Dot Dot Smile, Scentsy, Rosy’s Rustics, Trades of Hope, SeneGence, Crafted By Grace, Missy’s Magnets, Usborne Books & More, Doterra, Monat, Crabapple Farm Soap, Thirty-One Gifts & much more will be on site offering great deals.
There will be hot drinks and cookies, along with an opportunity to win one of two $40 gift cards to Dusty's.
The Christmas season has officially started. This can be such a joyous time, a hustle-bustle time, a stressful time and a time of giving.
The National Honor Society and the Student Council members in Orchard are organizing a Giving Tree at the Bank of Orchard. They are reaching out to all families with K-12 students in the school and any pre-school children who may not be in the school system but live in Orchard. If you would like to be a recipient of the Giving Tree, you can contact Mrs. Cheatum at the Orchard School by Friday, December 8. All requests will be kept anonymous.
The members of the National Honor Society and Student Council will be given a list of the needs to make an ornament for the tree downtown. The students will then place the ornaments on the tree, and any community members may take a tag off the tree, buy a gift and place the wrapped gift back under the tree at the bank. Mrs. Cheatum will be in charge of delivering the gifts, so confidentiality is maintained.
Gifts will be delivered after school on December 20th.
Jane Fink of Orchard has been recognized for 30 years of employment at the League of Human Dignity.
Jane was hired on Jan. 5, 1987, as an independent living advisor (ILA) in the League’s Norfolk center. She became independent living coordinator, supervising a staff of three ILAs, in 2009.
The League of Human Dignity is a nonprofit organization that promotes independent living for people with disabilities, in the community rather than in nursing homes. To that end, the League provides services, including independent living skills training, to help people become and remain independent.
In the Norfolk office, Jane also works with the League’s Youth Transition program, Living Well with a Disability classes, as well as fundraising and marketing.
League employees are presented with length-of-service awards after their first five years of employment and each five years thereafter.
A glow from Noble Street shines throughout the town of Orchard as a 19-year-long tradition spreads Christmas cheer.
Curt and Connie Mitteis of Orchard have dedicated years of tradition spreading their love for the holiday season. After marrying in 1998, the couple began their family tradition not knowing that it would continue for years to come.
Beginning the four-day-process, the Mitteis family breaks out their holiday bins and start their plans. Although their decorations usually have a similar layout each year, Connie said each year she likes to find new ideas to keep their decorations updated. With these ideas, they have not only found new decor but discovered easier methods.
Curt explained one of those instances, “The flood lights on our trees. It started out the first few years, we wrapped those trees. And then we tried to do a couple of others things. And one Halloween, Connie got the idea off the internet or something about putting the flood lights on them. And after that, it’s just so simple to do and it really is a nice affect. We just continued that.”
With these changes, they continue their yearly setup that started with a simple handed down nativity scene. As seen in their front lawn, Curt and Connie continue the tradition of the nativity scene which was handed down by Curt’s mother.
“As far as our yard decorations, our nativity is probably the first thing we started with. It was his mom’s, and she decided she didn’t want to put it up anymore. Curt actually made the manager and the stable. So, we just kind of kept that tradition,” said Connie.
After looking back to the beginning of their journey, the couple told about their most recent addition -- the advent candles. This year, after finding the idea online, Curt and Connie began to make one of their few homemade decorations. Using PVC pipes, caps, and a little bit of electrician work, the two made the advent candles which will individually light up each Sunday in December. The candles are on display behind the nativity scene which can be seen in the front of their lawn.
From candy canes lining the property to lights twinkling throughout the lawn, the Mitteis family has it all.
Connie explained, “When we were at the other house, we had wood siding so it didn’t matter. Curt used to get every nook and cranny outlined and stapled to the house. Almost the Griswold look, so that’s kind of how we got to be called the Griswolds.”