TBE ventures out of town
The Big Event, a community-service event at Chadron State College, came to Chadron for the fifth straight year Saturday afternoon.
There were 544 volunteers stationed across 54 jobsites in the Chadron area. Volunteers received a free T-shirt and a complimentary meal from Subway before being sent to their jobsites.
The Child Development Center, a returning jobsite, had many activities for volunteers. Child Development Center Teacher Kevin Bogus oversaw the site.
According to Bogus, the CDC was preparing for the summer, when the kids will be outside more. He requested help with general cleanup and improvements to the playground, as well as painting. Volunteers also assisted with preparing an outdoor painting center for the kids, which needed painted and Plexiglas installed.
Sigma Delta Nu and three families that were part of the CDC helped with the project. Bogus said that volunteers from other jobsites came to the CDC to assist with later activities. Bogus said that supplies needed for the projects were paid for by the CDC’s annual pie fundraiser.
Outside of town, several jobsites also participated in The Big Event.
At Chadron State Park, Xi Delta Zeta painted picnic tables and did yard work around the campgrounds as part of preparation for camping season. There were 17 volunteers, spread across the entire campgrounds. Gregg Galbraith, park superintendent, coordinated the jobsite and helped deliver paint to the students who ran out.
At Camp Norwesca, Delila Bartels, office administrator, oversaw the cross country team volunteers.
About 20 team members were split into three groups to cover the workload. Some were weeding flowerbeds, building a new flowerbed, and scraping old paint off the lodge. Volunteers from local churches were clearing brush, and the students also helped throw the branches in a truck to be hauled away.
The cross country team started a tradition of camping there as a team-builder each fall before school starts, according to Cross Country Assistant Coach Sarah Townsend, 22, graduate student of Douglas, Wyoming.
“It’s cool that we are stationed here for The Big Event,” Townsend said. “We’ve come out here for camp, so it’s nice to give back.”
Camp Norwesca is a retreat run by the Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church. It is located off Highway 385, surrounded by Chadron State Park and the Nebraska National Forest.
Every summer, the camp hosts youth and adults for a variety of programs. The camp offers swimming, hiking, games, and more, supplemented with worship time, according to its website.
According to Bartels, hail and wind damaged trees and flowers during last week’s storm, and needed the assistance that The Big Event provides.
“This is a total lifesaver,” Bartels said. “We’d be in a world of hurt if we didn’t have these kids here today.”
Down Highway 385 past Chadron State Park, Phi Beta Lambda assisted Terri Foppe at her residence with ground work around new Cedar trees, clearing the yard of debris, and gathering pre-cut firewood for transport and storage. Danielle Lecher, market development director at CSC, led 10 volunteers at the jobsite.
Off Goffena Road, just outside Chadron, Connie Moore, owner of the residence, had four volunteers pick up sticks that had blown off trees in the wind, clearing the land for mowing and other activities.