An Endangered Missing Advisory has been activated to determine the whereabouts of Terrese Tressler.
The Nebraska State Patrol's Twitter post mentioned that Tressler suffers from dementia.
An Endangered Missing Advisory has been issued for eastern Nebraska. The Nebraska State Patrol is attempting to locate, Terrese A. Tressler, who is a 63 year old, white female, approximately 5'6" tall, approximately 200 lbs, with blonde/grey long hair, and blue eyes. Tressler has a tattoo on her right wrist of infinity and a tattoo on her right big toe of a flower. Tressler wears glasses and has a scar on her forehead. Tressler is missing from the Meadow Grove area and was last seen in the Nebraska City area at about 2:30 AM, July 30, 2018. Tressler is known to drive a silver, 2012 Toyota Corolla, bearing Nebraska license plate number 7C5071. If you have any information, please call 911 or contact the Nebraska State Patrol at 402-331-3333.
This advisory is for the following State Patrol Troop Areas: Troop A, Troop B and Troop H.
An Endangered Missing Advisory has been activated to determine the whereabouts of Terrese Tressler.
An Endangered Missing Advisory has been issued for eastern Nebraska. The Nebraska State Patrol is attempting to locate, Terrese A. Tressler, who is a 63 year old, white female, approximately 5'6" tall, approximately 200 lbs, with blonde/grey long hair, and blue eyes. Tressler has a tattoo on her right wrist of infinity and a tattoo on her right big toe of a flower. Tressler wears glasses and has a scar on her forehead. Tressler is missing from the Meadow Grove area and was last seen in the Nebraska City area at about 2:30 AM, July 30, 2018. Tressler is known to drive a silver, 2012 Toyota Corolla, bearing Nebraska license plate number 7C5071.
If you have any information, please call 911 or contact the Nebraska State Patrol at 402-331-3333.
Jami and Bailey Legate fell into a “cornmance” in the summer of 2012.
About five years later, they were married.
A cornmance can be defined, according to Nate Metschke, as when two youth have a romance while detasseling together over the summer.
“Sometimes we tease the kids if we think they’re kind of having a little romance, we call it a ‘cornmance,’ just because it happens in the summer,” said Metschke, who oversees crews for NBS Detasseling LLC.
Youth tend to not know each other well on the first few days of detasseling, but as the season progresses, they become friends, he said. Sometimes they start dating.
“We had a young man from Neligh and a young lady from Battle Creek who met detasseling,” Metschke said. “And the next thing you know, they’re going to prom together and they’re dating, and then they graduated from high school and now they’re married and they have two children.”
In her freshman year at Battle Creek, Jami Legate decided to detassel since it was a good way to make money.
“My brother (Jesse) did it a couple years before I started,” she said. “And, it was good money in a short amount of time.”
During her second year of detasseling, Jami started talking to her future husband, Bailey.
“We met just on the bus, I guess,” she said. “We started talking during detasseling on the bus. That was the only time I ever met him.”
However, Bailey said that when she didn’t sit by him for a few days, he eventually took a seat by her.
“She didn’t want to sit by me because she was nervous,” he said.
Jami’s beauty and her passion for hunting, as well as other activities they had in common, drew him to her, Bailey said.
The long hours of difficult work also brought the two together, allowing for them to get to know each other better.
“It was just the long, hard days and we were always together,” Jami said. “I mean, we worked together every single day during detasseling, all day some days.”
Bailey started detasseling in eighth grade and continued throughout his four years at Neligh-Oakdale High School. Although, he first attempted to detassel when he was only 10 years old.
“The first year I detasseled, I was 10 and my brother was 12 and we detasseled together the first year, and I got kicked off of the crew because I was too young,” he said. “So, I had to wait two years to do it again.”
After the detasseling season ended, Jami and Bailey continued their friendship until February, when they started dating.
“At first, it was a lot of fl irting, and when we actually got together, it was pretty fun because we got to hang out all of the time,” Bailey said.
Their dates involved spending a lot time with family and doing outdoor activities together.
“We went to the drive-in in Neligh quite a bit, and then we just hung out with my family and his family quite a bit. We’d go hunting, fishing,” Jami said.
When prom rolled around, they went together for their junior and senior years and stuck to a camouflage theme for their dresses and tuxes, as they both like to hunt.
In 2014, they graduated from high school and enrolled in Northeast Community College, where Jami received her associate’s degree in early childhood education and Bailey completed some years for diesel mechanics.
Since they were both at the same college, and Bailey had rented a house in Norfolk, it was not difficult for them to spend time together.
“He rented a house in Norfolk with one of his friends, and I had to come to Norfolk, so we were pretty close,” Jami said. “Like, he didn’t live in Neligh and drive back and forth or anything.”
They continued dating throughout college, and during Jami’s baby shower for their first child, Bailey proposed to her.
“He had a chalkboard wrapped up in a gift with my baby shower gift. And when I unwrapped it, he was standing there with a ring,” Jami said. “The chalkboard said, ‘Will you marry me?’ And, it had a check for yes or no.”
Bailey said his idea was inspired by the song, “Check Yes Or No,” and a note he wrote to her during church.
“Shortly after we started dating, when we were in church, we just listened to the song that says that,” he said. “I wrote, ‘Do you love me?’ and put the boxes to check yes or no on a little note in church. And, she found that note right before the baby shower one day. So, that’s what I thought of.”
On June 10, 2017, they got married at Kelly’s Country Club in Norfolk but didn’t forget how they first met.
“It was also a camouflage wedding, and we actually had jars of corn on the tables with pictures because of detasseling,” Jami said. “Because we met detasseling, we thought that would be appropriate.”
Jami and Bailey bought a house together in Norfolk in August of 2017, where they live with their two kids.
If detasseling is still around when their children, Bentley, 2, and Emersyn, 4 months, grow up, Bailey said he would like to see them follow suit and detassel.
“If it’s still around, I hope they do it because it gives you good work ethics for the future,” he said. “Metschke actually drives people to work. When he’s out there, he’ll walk down the rows and kind of spy on you.”
According to Bailey, Metschke, who was their crew leader at the time, would spy on him and Jami, too.
Metschke’s humor made the detasseling work more fun, Jami said.
“He was really good; he was really funny, so he was really easy to work for,” she said. “He made the day go by a lot quicker. He called us ‘in a cornmance.’”
While Metschke only knows of one couple that got married from detasseling, he said it’s still a successful way for people to meet.
“We’ve had several kids that have gone out on dates or whatever. But, we’ve only ever had one couple ever get married,” he said. “But, that’s probably a higher success rate than, like, 'The Bachelor,' 'The Bachelorette' on TV. But, I don’t have any stats to back that up.”
Bailey called Metschke’s use and creation of the term “corny,” yet he agreed cornmances are more than just a fantasy.
“I encourage everybody to detassel,” he said. “It gives you good work ethics and you can eventually find your future wife.”
Two Antelope County volunteer fire departments were among the 109 rural fire districts to receive the 2018 Volunteer Fire Assistance (VFA) grant.
The Neligh Volunteer Fire Department received $4,250.00, while the Oakdale Volunteer Fire Department received $4,500.00. The grant money can be used for requests such as personal protective equipment, prevention and communication gear.
The state of Nebraska was awarded an additional $100,000 in grant money this year due to the increase in amount of wildfires and fire departments responding to those fires, according to NFS Fire Program Manager Matt Holte.
The full list of recipients and amounts are as follows:
Abie Volunteer Fire Department
Ainsworth Volunteer Fire Department
Alliance Volunteer Fire Department
Arapahoe Fire Department
Ashton Volunteer Fire Department
Atkinson Volunteer Fire Department
Aurora Volunteer Fire Department
Axtell Volunteer Fire & Rescue
Banner County Volunteer Fire & Rescue
Bartlett Volunteer Fire Department
Battle Creek Volunteer Fire Department
Bayard Volunteer Fire Department
Beaver City Rural Fire Dist.
Beemer Fire and Rescue
Bellwood Volunteer Fire Department
Bennett Rural Fire Department
Bennington Volunteer Fire Department
Bertrand Fire and Rescue
Brule Volunteer Fire Department
Cedar Bluffs Suburban Fire
Chadron Volunteer Fire Department
City of Friend Volunteer Fire Department
Clarks Volunteer Fire Department
Colon Volunteer Fire Department
Curtis Volunteer Fire Department
Dannebrog Volunteer Fire Department
Dix Volunteer Fire Department
Dodge County Mutual Aid Assc.
Dorchester Volunteer Fire Department
Douglas Volunteer Fire Department
Eagle Fire & Rescue
East Central NE Fire Prevention Co-op
Edgar Volunteer Fire Department
Ericson Volunteer Fire Department
Fairbury Rural Fire Department
Fordyce Volunteer Fire Department
Fort Calhoun Volunteer Fire Department
Franklin Volunteer Fire Department
Fremont Rural Fire Department
Garland Volunteer Fire Department
Genoa Volunteer Fire Department
Gering Volunteer Fire Department
Giltner Rural Fire Department
Gordon Volunteer Fire Department
Grant Volunteer Fire Department
Greeley Volunteer Fire Department
Guide Rock Volunteer Fire Department
Hadar Volunteer Fire Department
Hampton Volunteer Fire Department
Hay Springs Rural Fire Department
Hershey Volunteer Fire Department
Hildreth Volunteer Fire Department
Hordville Volunteer Fire Department
Jansen Rural Fire District #9
Kenesaw Volunteer Fire Department
Keystone-Lemoyne Fire Rescue
Linwood Volunteer Fire & Rescue
Malmo Volunteer Fire Department
Mead Volunteer Fire Department
Minatare/Melbeta Fire & Rescue
Minden Volunteer Fire Department
Morrill Volunteer Fire Department
Nebraska Firefighters Museum
Nehawka Volunteer Fire Department
Neligh Volunteer Fire Department
Nelson Volunteer Fire Department
North Bend Volunteer Fire Department
NSVFA Fire Prevention
NSVFA Fire School
Oakdale Volunteer Fire Department
Ohiowa Volunteer Fire Department
Ord Volunteer Fire Department
Orleans Volunteer Fire Department
Oxford Volunteer Fire Department
Peru Volunteer Fire Department
Petersburg Volunteer Fire Department
Phillips Volunteer Fire Department
Pierce Volunteer Fire Department
Pilger Fire and Rescue
Plainview Fire Department
Plattsmouth Volunteer Fire Department
Ponca Rural Fire Department
Potter Volunteer Fire Department
Prague Rural Fire Department
Primrose Rural Fire District 5
Randolph Volunteer Fire & Rescue
Ravenna Volunteer Fire Department
Raymond Volunteer Fire Department
Red Cloud Volunteer Fire Department
Red Willow Western Rural Fire Dept.
Rushville Volunteer Fire Department
Scottsbluff Rural Fire Protection District
State Fire Marshal’s Office Training
Sidney Volunteer Fire Department
Snyder Volunteer Fire Department
Snyder Volunteer Fire Department
St Edward Volunteer Fire Department
Stanton Volunteer Fire
Sterling Volunteer Fire Department
Sutherland Volunteer Fire Department
Syracuse Volunteer Fire Department
Thedford Volunteer Fire Department
Ulysses Volunteer Fire Department
Venango Volunteer Fire Department
Verdigre Volunteer Fire Department
Winslow Rural Fire District
WIRAT Team State Fire Marshall's Office
Wynot Volunteer Fire Department
Yutan Volunteer Fire Department
Antelope County drivers will be able to make their commutes a little faster after speed limit increases on multiple roads went into effect on Friday.
Legislative Bill 1009 went into effect on Friday morning, which changed speed limits on some state highways and roads. Highways affected that were 55/60 previously were increased to 65, and expressways affected increased from 65 to 70.
Highway 14 in Antelope County saw an increase in sections of the highway. From Neligh north to the 14/20 junction, the speed limit was increased to 65. The increase to 65 was also seen on Highway 14 south of Elgin. Highway 14 from Elgin to Neligh will continue to be 60.
Other highways affected were Highway 70 west from Elgin and Highway 45 south from Tilden to the 32/45 junction, which both increased to 65.
Two area girls recently achieved the highest honor in Nebraska 4-H archery— the triple crown.
Caydence Schumacher, 10, of Clearwater and Jailee Hogancamp, 13, of Tilden each won three state 4-H archery championships in 2018. This is referred to as the triple crown, a feat that is rarely achieved, according to Mark Eggers, Antelope County Shooting Sports coordinator.
“It was a great end to state 4-H weekend,” Eggers said. “Caydence and Jailee have both achieved the highest honor in Nebraska 4-H Archery by winning all three state titles in the same year. This is the Randy Latimer Triple Crown Award. Only three shooters this year were able to achieve this.”
Schumacher and Hogancamp each won state archery titles for indoor target, outdoor target and 3D shooting. The state outdoor and 3D contests ended last month at the Heartland Public Shooting Park near Grand Island. The state indoor meet was held in January at Columbus.
Neither girl expected to fare so well at the state level.
Winning the triple crown came as a huge surprise to Schumacher since this was her first year competing at state. In fact, her state competition began almost exactly one year from the day she first started shooting archery.
“I was just hoping I would medal,” the Clearwater fifth grader said. “But after I won the outdoor, my goal was to get the triple crown.”
The daughter of Shannon and Courtney Schumacher, she had a special reason for her goal—to honor a man who meant so much to her dad.
“The triple crown award is named after Randy Latimer, who was my shooting instructor at Pierce,” Shannon Schmacher said.
Although Hogancamp earned the state indoor title in 2017 and won both the outdoor target and 3D contests in 2016, she didn’t come into this season with any expectations. After all, she had never even placed in both the indoor and outdoor competitions during the same season.
“I was surprised to win all three,” Hogancamp said.
This year’s triple crown win brings her total to six state titles in three years. She is the daughter of Jason Hogancamp of Norfolk and Jennifer Cowling of Tilden.
The Elkhorn Valley seventh grader credits her success to archery practice.
“I practice every Tuesday,” she said.
Their triumphs can also be attributed to the Antelope County Shooting Sports program.
“I shot BB gun and air rifle,” Shannon Schumacher said.” “I never shot archery. Mark (Eggers) and the Christiansens (Rod and Lisa) have helped a lot.”
Hogancamp competes in the intermediate division for archery and Schumacher competes in the junior division. In addition to archery, Schmacher also shoots BB gun and air rifle.
The Antelope County Shooting Sports program has a storied history. Since 2002, county archers have won an impressive 113 state 4-H titles and 20 triple crowns.
Eggers said four kids, all from Antelope County, made up the Nebraska team that won nationals in 2009 and set a new high score record.
“They probably still hold that record,” he said.
Eggers said the county shooting sports shirts used to be blue and earned them a nickname from other counties.
“They’d call us ‘The Blue Crew’ when we showed up at competitions,” he said.
Eggers said the state and national contests were competitive, but there was one even tougher.
“When we got back to Antelope County, all of our top shooters had to shoot against each other,” he said with a grin. “We always joked that Antelope County was the toughest shoot in the state.”
Earning money, developing friendships – even taking in the aroma of the cornfield – are all good reasons for kids to detassel over the summer.
For Elkhorn Valley freshman Walter Furstenau, who is in his second year of detasseling, “probably the smell of the cornfield” is the best part.
“I really, I don’t know why, I just really like the smell of the cornfield in the morning,” he said.
Forty-one students from Clearwater, Orchard, Elgin, Neligh-Oakdale and Elkhorn Valley schools formed one of three crews for NBS Detasseling LLC, which is located out of Seward, to detassel this summer.
These students first heard of the job from friends, family and their teachers.
Krystal Fulsaas, who will be a freshman at Neligh-Oakdale High School, said she first learned about it from Nate Metschke.
“Mr. Metschke brought it up before, and I was really interested in it, but when it came close to the season, I tried backing out, but my dad made me do it,” she said. “So, I’m here now on my third year.”
Jacob Lind, who will be in sixth grade at EV, also initially heard of it from his teacher.
“This is my first year, and our music teacher, Mrs. Gale, she kind of started up and handed out sheets and gave us and told us that we should sign up, and I just decided I would try it,” he said.
EV seventh grader Layce Brandt said her dad encouraged her to start.
“This is actually my first year,” she said. “I heard about it from my dad; he’s been doing it for a long time and he inspired me to do this.”
Detasseling requires an early morning wake up call.
At 5 a.m. every morning, the bus departs from Neligh and makes stops at other town to pick up the youth. While some of them are not a fan of the early hours, they still get used to waking up before the sun is out.
Orchard Public School freshman Andrew Pearson, who is detasseling for his first year, said having a sleeping schedule has helped.
“The first day was not really that good, but I’ve got a sleeping schedule, so it’s really not so bad,” he said.
Melany Mendoza, who will be a sophomore at Clearwater Public Schools, is detasseling for the first time this year and said she sees the value in learning to get up early.
“I don’t like them; I’m usually not an early person,” she said. “But, I think it will prepare me for later on in life.”
EV seventh grader Dominic Ottis is detasseling for the first time and said waking up is hard, but the work isn’t so bad.
“The difficult part is getting up in the morning, and the easiest part is probably just walking up and down the fields just pulling tassels,” he said. “I’ve helped people do construction work, but I’d say this is probably easier.”
While N-O freshman Ethan Gregory has not worked a job other than detasseling for his third year now, he said he will likely continue because he thinks it’s easier than other jobs.
“I really don’t know, but I might, because I kind of say this job is kind of easier than other jobs like McDonald’s, plus you get a lot of money for doing this,” he said.
Money made from detasseling is important to many of the students, including Elgin Public Schools junior Olivia Lindgren.
“I first decided to do it because I needed the money to do a lot of stuff during the school year,” she said. “Because, you have meals to pay for and, like, after sports and everything. You have to pay for, like, clothes and school supplies, and I need the money.”
Students working earn row pay based on the quantity and length of the rows.
In the process of earning money, many of them also get to see new and old friends.
First-time detasseler Elgin freshman Trinity Graham said his favorite part is meeting and spending time with people.
“I like finding new friends from different places and coming here and working,” he said. “It’s just fun to hang out with friends.”
Not only does the job pay well, but it provides learning opportunities and comradery.
Valentine High School sophomore Harlie Nolze, who is detasseling for her second year, said she plans on returning in future years because of the pay and friendship.
“I plan on continuing to do this because it pays kind of good,” she said. “The more rows you do, the more you get paid. But, it’s a nice pay and you get some friendship out of it.”
For about 20 days a year, students work hard and learn about “tassels,” “wraps,” “whips,” “Christmas trees” and “suckers.”
Learning vocabulary is essential to detasseling, according to Nate Metschke, who oversees the crews in the area working for NBS Detasseling LLC.
“We have some great kids this year and we have some wonderful crew leaders, because you’ve just got to teach them the vocabulary, teach them what to look for, because kids are pretty smart and pretty resilient,” Metschke said.
One main concept the kids learn is the difference between “male and female corn.”
Every male row is painted orange and between the taller male rows are four female rows. Male rows are double planted to make them have a longer season, Metschke said.
“If you look, there’s going to be two rows of male, that way they have a longer season where it’s going to be pollinating,” he said. “There will be an early and a late, that way they’re sure to catch it.”
Metschke described male rows as having “full-fledged Christmas tree tassels,” which is what results when wraps are missed and not snapped off in female rows. Wraps are the part that the detasseling crews pull off , and inside of those are tassels.
Dillon Smith, who leads one of three crews this year, said the workers need to pull tassels right out of the top of the stock.
“It just kind of looks like a needle, thicker than a needle, and it’s just right on top of the corn and it’s going to be taller than all of the other corn,” he said.
It’s crucial to have these pulled before they can pollinate the corn.
“I was told that every tassel you miss will ruin like a 15-foot circle around that, and they have to sort all of the corn by hand in the fall, and so we don’t want to miss any,” Metschke said. “And, these kids are pretty clean. I know when the fi eld checkers come in, they check 2,000 plants, and if they find six tassels or more, then it’s not clean enough.”
Before detasselers come to the field, a puller machine that uses lawn-mower-like blades will mow it.
“They’ll wait two days, and then they’ll put a different attachment on it that’s got like front lawn mower tires on it, that’s what they call the puller,” Metschke said. “And then, that puller will go, and it’s got electronic eyes, and it sets down on the corn and it goes through here and it pulls. And then, all the kids do is pick up the tassels that have been left behind.”
According to Metschke, fields are typically between 88- 92 percent clean when the kids get there.
The whole process when the kids go out to the field takes about seven to eight hours, Smith said.
“We’re usually home by noon to 1 p.m. at the latest. Some days, it’s longer. We can be out here till 2 or 3 p.m.,” he said.
For protection while on the job, the detasselers are given gloves, glasses and a hat with a screen in front to prevent bugs and corn from getting to their faces. They are also encouraged to wear compression shorts, long sleeve shirts, pants and long socks.
Having a trash bag, poncho or rain jacket is good for wet mornings, Metschke said.
To keep track of kids’ locations, they are required to place a jug in front of each row that they go down.
“That is our safety measure,” he said. “Every kid puts a jug in the field, and one crew leader stays behind and we always make sure that if a jug is in a field for longer than we think it should be, then we go down and check on the kid. That’s how we know everybody’s there. So, if you have 40 kids working, there’ll be 40 water jugs there.”
Even though detasseling is hard work, it’s also a great way for students to make money, Metschke said.
“We keep them drinking water, have some fun with them and watch them make some money,” he said. And, they’ve had a chance to make a lot of money so far, so that will be a good time for them.”
For more than 10 years, Nate Metschke led the detasseling crew, until now.
Metschke drove the bus and was in charge of the crew for about 13 years, he said.
Now, the torch has been passed on to Dillon Smith, who has done detasseling work since he was 12 years old.
“I got started on it because when you’re 12 years old, you don’t really have an actual job, so this was about my only option,” Smith said. “I was a regular for eight years, and then I was a crew leader for three years and this year is my first year running the crew.”
While he was not initially planning on taking charge this year, when Metschke offered him the opportunity, he took it.
“Nate Metschke actually got a promotion to kind of oversee all of the crews in the area,” he said. “And so, I was not supposed to do it this year and he asked me to do it, and so I said I would.”
Instead of leading the crew that Smith now is in charge of, Metschke now gets the opportunity to get to know kids working in the other two crews.
“This is my first year of not driving a bus and I miss it,” Metschke said. “But, now instead of just spending all of my time with the crew that Dillon has, now I get to know all of the kids. So, that’s kind of fun, too, because I like kids, being a teacher. School’s been out long enough that it’s time to be around some kids again.”
Detasseling work is done through NBS Detasseling LLC, which contracts acres with Producers Hybrids in Battle Creek.
Bill Sloup and his brother, Nick, own the company. Sloup said he has been with detasseling for a long time, and the bigger part of the business is located out of Seward and York.
According to Sloup, Metschke took over and now coordinates the crews while Norfolk Catholic PE teacher Kris Freese, long-time Randolph teacher and coach Mark Anderson, and Smith lead the three groups.
“Nate Metschke has started the Neligh crew and has taken over this year as coordinating the detasseling,” he said. “Kris Freese has always had a group of really good workers from Norfolk Catholic, and Mark Anderson has been with us a long time. He’s a teacher at Randolph, and they have picked up kids in Pierce and Osmond in the past.”
Sloup expressed his gratitude for Metschke’s initiative, as well as the three crew leaders’ direction.
“We really appreciated Nate coordinating the detasseling season, and we really appreciate Dillon’s, Kris’ and Mark’s leadership,” he said.
Not only has Sloup been impressed by the detasseling leaders, but he has also found himself fortunate with the kids’ determination and quality of work.
“Our crew leaders have been such a key part of our business and they have been able to recruit really good kids with work ethic and character,” he said. “We have just been very blessed by the people who we’ve had work for us.”
In addition to crews ran by Smith, Freese and Anderson, the company also has a crew from Elkhorn that works in the North Bend area and is led by three teachers.
The group that Smith leads this year for NBS Detasseling LLC is comprised of students from Clearwater, Orchard, Elgin, Neligh-Oakdale and Elkhorn Valley. According to Smith, the youth working must be at least 12 years old and there is no specific limit on how old they can be.
His crew has a total of 41 kids this year, and they’ve had about 38 of them working a day, he said.
If any of them struggle when they first start working, Smith said he tells them how when he initially started, he didn’t know what a tassel was.
“All of a sudden, a crew leader came up behind me, and they’re like, ‘Are you Dillon?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah.’ And she’s like, ‘You’re doing a great job.’ I’m like, ‘OK, I don’t know what I’m doing.’ And she turns around and pulls a tassel and I’m like, ‘That’s what they are,’” he said. “It just clicked, and I’ve been doing it every summer since.”
With his transition to running the group, Smith said they still get in the field and help pull tassels to make the days go quicker, but he also has to fill out paperwork.
“Other than that, about the only difference really is just making sure the kids are doing their jobs,” he said. “And then at the end of the day, it involves some paperwork.”
Crew leader Kasi Grosserode started detasseling when she was 12 years old and now supervises for the first time this year. She writes down names, hours worked and what blocks they go into to keep track of row pay. Pay is determined by the quantity and length of rows detasseled every day.
“This is the easier part of the paperwork, really,” Grosserode said. “Dillon’s the one who does a lot of the more difficult paperwork as far as figuring out if they are gone a day or if they come in on a second pull, that they did first pull and how that all works.”
The other crew leaders, Tyler Miller and Alexis Jensen, walk down to the back and clean end rows to help the kids get out of their rows quicker.
“Me and Tyler also go back to kind of the end of the rows and clean the rows,” Jensen said. “Sometimes we’ll do rows, but it just kind of depends on what Dillon or Metschke want us to do.”
A main reason that keeps the crew leaders coming back is because of friendships they have developed.
“I’ve known them for a long time, so it’s been a fun time to really get to know them over the last couple years and stick with them for awhile,” Miller said.
Detasseling with friends has provided Smith with many memories over the years to discuss with friends.
“I’ve made a lot of friends over the years,” he said. “And, even I’ll see some people that I haven’t seen since they ended detasseling six years ago, and we’ll still be able to talk about it and everything.”
Smith recently graduated from Wayne State College this year, where he studied business. Before, he attended Neligh-Oakdale High School, which he graduated from in 2013.
While he works in Norfolk’s Bomgaars, Smith said he was able to request time off to lead detasseling.
“For me, it’s been kind of tough because I haven’t really been living in Neligh,” he said. “But, I get time off work, my boss at my other job allows it. Just, paycheck’s too good compared to my other job.”
Since he graduated from college and wants to start thinking about his actual career, Smith said this will be his last year with the program.
“I’ve worked at Bomgaars in Norfolk for about four and a half years,” he said. “And so, I’m planning on staying with the Bomgaars company and going into their management training program and eventually managing my own Bomgaars store.”
Waking up at 4 a.m. won’t be missed, but Smith said he will miss seeing all of the children and how their learning develops throughout the days.
“A lot of them, on the first days, they don’t really get what they’re doing,” he said. “And about day three, four, five, somewhere in there, you really start to see a lot of the kids get it, and for a lot of them, this is their first actual job.”
After he leaves, Smith said he would like to see the crew continue to work hard. “This crew has kind of been known as one of the best crews in the area,” he said. “So, I hope even after I’m gone, they can continue to have that mark and not let things slide.”
It was the sweetest 4-H workshop yet.
Seventeen 4-H members learned cake decorating skills from Becky Eickholt of Neligh at a 4-H Cake Decorating Workshop in Neligh on Thursday. Three members even traveled from Pierce County 4-H.
Eickholt, who is a 7-12 family and consumer sciences teacher at Clearwater-Orchard, also decorates cakes with her business, Becky's Cake Thyme.
"I've been decorating cakes since my girls were in 4-H," she said. "So, probably 20 to 25 years."
Eickholt taught the 4-H members how to prepare the cakes for decorating as well as some basic decorating techniques. The kids were each given decorator bags and one tip to take home, along with their decorated cupcake.
"I liked trying all the different tips that you can use," Abby Kerkman said.
Madison Metschke agreed. She said learning how to decorate the cakes was a good experience and fun.
Another perk of taking the workshop? Eating their completed creations.
"Oh, it was so good," Metschke said. "Mrs. Eickholt makes the best frosting!"
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