Made possible in part by Community Sustaining Sponsor

What's New

Murray Newsletter - December 23, 2009















THANKS our Volunteer Fire Fighters and EMT's!



One night last week I'd stayed up till the wee hours, so was sleeping in a little later than usual. About 7:15 I heard a beeping sound and thought I was dreaming, but no - it was real - and very annoying. I thought, uh-oh...someone left their cell phone at home or forgot to turn off their alarm clock, but it wasn't either of those. The noise was coming from downstairs, so I went down and found that our carbon monoxide detector was sounding off. After trying to silence it, the darned thing would not stay silent. Every five seconds or so it would beep four times in a row.

Okay, I felt fine, just a little tired, from the lack of sleep, I'm sure, but no headache, nausea, etc., that you usually read about being connected to carbon monoxide poisoning. Well, I opened several windows, even though it was very cold...down in the teens, if I remember right - and put my heavy coat and gloves on. Still, that little white box on the wall kept sounding off. So, hesitantly, I called 911 and told the nice person on the other end of the line that there was no actual 'emergency' and that I felt just fine, but the alarm kept sounding.

'I'll have someone right there', said the voice on the other end and 'Leave your house at once'.

WOW! About 2 minutes comes Chris Spangler from our Volunteer Fire Department. I am not kidding...he was there in the blink of an eye! He came in and checked the furnace and water heater and said 'there's a little trace of something here, but this is an older carbon monoxide meter, so I'm calling the guys to get the good one out of the truck.'

Another WOW! About 2 minutes later, Todd ? and Steve Gdovic were right here with the other meter. Luckily, there were only slight traces of CO showing up by then. They were pretty sure that it was just from when Mike, my husband, started the car in the garage as he left for work. The breeze that morning must have been coming from just the right direction to blow the gas back into the house. They did advise me to call the gas company to have it checked once again, which I did, and when Chris, from Black Hills Energy, got here, he could not find any traces of it.

Yes, we've been blessed, once again, by our Murray Volunteer Fire and Rescue team! Four years ago they were there - on Thanksgiving Day - when Mike and I crawled out of our burning car after being broad-sided by a pick-up truck. A rescue squad and helicopter took us to the hospital that time. Now, they were here for us again, just to reassure us that everything was okay at home, but appreciated even more for what they do for all of us on any given day.

So, THANK YOU, Murray Volunteers! Our area is blessed to have you!




Last Thursday, the 17th, the Conestoga music department, led by Music Director, Dwight Rose, held its' Chrismas Program which proved to be a real holiday treat!

The Jr-High band, Sr-High band, Show Choir, Jr-High Choir, Sr-High Choir all demonstrated their talents with seasonal selections.

A special quartet, the 'Street Bums', also sang a couple of holiday favorites. The quartet, made up of Conestoga admin and faculty, put smiles on everyone's faces with their light-hearted performance. Members of the quartet. David Friedli, Jeremy Schroeder, Dwight Rose and Colin Warren are shown below:




After last week's Christmas concert a book sale was held in the commons area at the Jr-Sr High School with proceeds going to the school's library. It looked like there was a terrific turn-out!




Wiles Brothers Fertilizer Inc. is a local seed and fertilizer company owned by Marvin, Bruce, and Tom Wiles. The business has been running for 34 years and plans to keep going strong for many more years.

Recently, Wiles Brothers Fertilizer Inc. generously donated $500 and an FFA jacket to the Conestoga FFA Chapter. The jacket was awarded to freshman Melissa Beck. All of the money donated will be used by the chapter to support their many events.

Wiles Brothers, in total, donated $2,500 to the National FFA Organization, which was matched by Syngenta.

Conestoga FFA thanks the Wiles Brothers Fertilizer Inc. for their thoughtful donation.

(Contributed by Shannon King)


Community and Rural Development

One pillar DED continues to address is the ever-present need for safe, decent housing in which families can provide for one another; through which employers can attract new employees; and that is so critical to the continued growth and development of all Nebraska communities. From January through mid-December, DED had awarded more than $15.8 million for housing activities ranging from new construction of rental and single family homes, construction of housing for special needs populations, purchase/rehabilitation and resale programs, and homeowner and down payment assistance programs, to name a few.

The Department administers many other "pillar" programs that tackle specific challenges, such as providing safe water and wastewater systems, streets, and municipal buildings housing city offices, emergency services, and senior and child care among others. Here is a recap of some programs:

Establishing the groundwork from which future goals and objectives can be achieved is what planning is about. To date in 2009, DED has awarded $387,350 in grants to help communities write or update comprehensive plans and city codes, or those related to more specific needs, such as housing and infrastructure upgrades.

Many Nebraska communities are involved with replacing aging water and wastewater systems to comply with current safety standards and provide citizens with water and wastewater services that fulfill basic needs. Similar to housing, this is a critical need area that DED works tirelessly to update and meet. The Department has awarded around $5.5 million in 2009 to help communities implement necessary changes.

If communities expect to attract new residents and businesses, there needs to be a concerted effort to preserve and refresh the nerve centers-the downtowns and main streets-in which a major percentage of activity takes place. DED's Downtown Revitalization program helps with such rehab and renovation efforts. Through mid-December, the program had awarded more than $1.34 million to cities undertaking Phases I or II of the program.

A portion of federal stimulus money awarded mid-year was earmarked for Nebraska's aging neighborhoods with the goal of rehabilitating aging housing and infrastructure to resell to new owners, or eliminating blighted or condemned properties in preparation for new development. Since August, the Department has awarded more than $1.61 million through the program.

A broader rehabilitation approach is incorporated in DED's Community Revitalization program that allows cities to tackle a variety of needs, including housing, infrastructure, public works and business development to name a few. In 2009, DED awarded $58,590 for ongoing community revitalization efforts.

A program that communities can use to support targeted projects is the Community Development Assistance Act, created in 1985 by the Nebraska Legislature to encourage financial support by businesses to community betterment organizations in their efforts to implement community service and development projects in chronic economically distressed areas. In 2009, CDAA has awarded $65,000 in tax credits for such projects.

Mother Nature also has her way of disrupting the ongoing building efforts of communities and 2009 was no exception with severe storms and ensuing damage. However DED was able to award more than $3.28 million in Disaster Recovery funds to help communities get back on their feet.

Other annual programs, the celebration of Community Development Week and the Nebraska Community Improvement Program continue to find ways to encourage continued growth and development of the state's cities and towns.


On Sunday evening, Cub Scout Troop #471, went Christmas caroling around Christian Heights in Murray. It was great hearing their little voices in the cold, damp evening air. Thanks, Scouts!!


Genealogical Society Meeting

The Otoe County Genealogical Society will hold its January meeting at Otoe County Museum of Memories, 366 Poplar Street, in Syracuse, Nebraska. This meeting will welcome all new members into the society, and will also cover topics of interest concerning genealogical research in the Otoe County area. This meeting is open to all who are interested in joining the society, or just wish to attend to learn more about genealogical research in general.

During this meeting, OCGS Vice President, Duane Arends, will present a class on 'Time lines', which will cover how utilizing time lines to document your family's history can greatly assist you in uncovering valuable information about your ancestors.

Our society meets on the second Thursday of every month at 7:00 pm, and our meeting location alternates every other month between the Otoe County Museum of Memories in Syracuse, Nebraska, and the Morton-James Public Library in Nebraska City.

To learn more about the society, please check out our website, or contact the Morton-James Library or Otoe County Museum for more information.

Curtis Wolbert

President/Otoe County Genealogical Society



The Old Avoca (Nebraska) Schoolhouse will be hosting a Jamming Workshop on

Saturday, January 9,

1 PM - 3 PM

Championship fiddler and fiddle book author, Deborah Greenblatt will share some hints to help you play in a jam session with minimum stress, and maximum music.

Pre-registration is required, enrollment is limited, and there is a $20.00 fee.

For more information, call 402-275-3221, or send an e-mail to



"Acting Up in Class" is Okay at the Lofte

At the Lofte Community Theatre in Manley, acting up in class is not only accepted,
but strongly encouraged!
Back by popular demand, the Lofte is gathering its most talented artists in a
classroom environment to teach and prepare young actors and actresses.
Four separate classroom sessions will cover Acting Basics, Intro to Dance,
Vocal Audition and Stage Combat.
This one-day theater workshop will take place on Saturday, January 23 from
10am to 2:30pm.
Enrollment is open to young people ages 10-18 at any level of experience.
Space for this event is limited and slots will be filled on a first come, first served
Participants should plan on arriving fifteen minutes early for check-in.

Tuition for the one-day workshop is $50 per student and includes a box lunch.

Each student will also receive a graduation gift.

Questions may be directed to Anne Pope at

To obtain a registration sheet, please call the Lofte box office at (402)234-2553

or download it at


Pictured above: Lofte students learn a few basic dance moves from
Megan Kovar of Lincoln during last year's Acting Up in Class.




If you have questions,comments, photos or recipes that you would like to submit
for next week's Wednesday Newsletter, you must email them


If possible, please email photos and documents in JPG format,
no larger than 640 x 480p.
If you'd like to send items via the U.S. postal service and you'd like to have them
returned to you, please enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

Send in plenty of time to be received by noon on Monday to:

201 N How Ave
Murray, NE
Remember to include 'who, what, when, where and why',
along with any other helpful details.


Latest Events

12 Feb 2019n07:00PM - nTOWN BOARD MTNG
17 Feb 2019n09:00AM - 01:00PMnPANCAKES!
18 Feb 2019n12:01AM - 12:00PMnDEADLINE for MURRAY NEWSLETTER!
25 Feb 2019n12:01AM - 12:00PMnDEADLINE for MURRAY NEWSLETTER!
03 Mar 2019n05:00PM - 07:00PMnYOUTH GROUP & FCA MEETINGS!
04 Mar 2019n12:01AM - 12:00PMnDEADLINE for MURRAY NEWSLETTER!
11 Mar 2019n12:01AM - 12:00PMnDEADLINE for MURRAY NEWSLETTER!
12 Mar 2019n07:00PM - nTOWN BOARD MTNG
17 Mar 2019n11:00AM - 01:00PMnCORNED BEEF & CABBAGE DINNER!
18 Mar 2019n12:01AM - 12:00PMnDEADLINE for MURRAY NEWSLETTER!
February 2019
1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28

Murray Mobile

Type in your mobile number in the field below and click "Subscribe" to get newsletter link delivered direct to your phone ea Wed at 1:30pm.

STD SMS & Data Rates apply which means if you currently pay for TEXT messages you send: those that you send to 72727 will also count as TEXT messages. If like most folks you have unlimited Text's you will not see any additional cost for anything. You will probably receive up to 5 addtl. weekly Newsletter msg per month. Anytime you change your mind just reply STOP to 72727 and you will immediately be unsubscribed. No matter what you will still receive the good old Email version of the Newsletter.