A fresh coat of paint and new sign adorn the front of Bloomfield’s newest restaurant, La Vaquera. The new establishment offers Mexican food and has already been providing customers with delicious meals even though their doors have not officially opened.
Last week, La Vaquera started providing pick up and delivery meals of quesadillas, tostadas, burritos, soft or crunchy tacos and bowls at $8.50 per plate.
Owner Sulymar Salazar, currently has hours of operation from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday through Saturday.
Kristel Mackeprang, co-owner of Country Market right next door to La Vaquera praised the food.
“Their food is awesome,” she said. “Mexican is my favorite kind of food and it did not disappoint.”
In fact, while trying the food, she and some co-workers ordered 4 of the 5 options available right now. She said each one of them was fantastic.
La Vaquera plans on expanding the menu when the restaurant itself opens. Salazar hopes to open the doors to the public Thursday, August 1.Until then, lunches can be ordered by calling 561-376-0972.
The public has spent the last few weeks sneaking a peek on Christy Wagner and her new endeavor Blooms and Bling. After purchasing Petals and More, Wagner changed not only the name of the Bloomfield flower shop, but she is changing the whole aesthetic.
Since purchasing, Wagner has stripped the walls down to the exposed brick, put in new flooring and shiplap, painted and more. People can’t help but to be curious as to what she is up to in there.
Wagner is excited to announce that she has decided to open the doors for business on Monday, July 22.
There will be a grand opening at a later date. Wagner has so many ideas but hasn’t pinned anything down just yet. She has considered bringing in a food truck and make a collaborative event out of it.
She would like to have good deals, give-aways and have other businesses down Broadway stay open later. Her goal is to bring a lot of people to town.
People will definitely notice the new look, but Wagner also has new home decor pieces, wood flowers, candles and more in the store.
She has also gotten her feet wet by already arranging flowers for a funeral before her doors are even open.
“I’ve already sold a lot of plants and have a lot of flowers on hand and made some arrangements,” she said.
Wagner said she really enjoys arranging, especially after a day of working at the motel, it’s almost therapeutic.
“It’s so calming and relaxing,” she said.
Wagner knows that even with the great support she has seen from the community, it will take some time to get everything figured out.
“I’ve never done this before,” she said. “There’s so much to learn, like just how much time it takes when the flowers come in, like trimming all the flowers and putting them into quick dip and put them in the containers.”
She then has to clean all the flower containers and the inside of the cooler every week.
Another thing Wagner will find out with time is her hours of operation. Currently, she is planning on being open Monday through Friday noon to 6 p.m. and Saturdays 9 a.m. to noon.
“Once we sell the motel, I will have more time to focus on the flower shop,” she said.
She is often there until midnight with these renovations and organizing in progress and has noticed some men coming in and wanting bouquets later at night. Once she gets going, her hours might reflect that as well.
Wagner also plans on delivering as far as Osmond and Niobrara. The previous owners had a lot of luck with receiving business from the north side of Knox County and she plans to continue working with them.
“It is kind of amazing,” she said. “Everyone has been so helpful and the community is so supportive.”
Many florists in the area have reached out to her, telling her to not hesitate to ask for help or advice.
Wagner said the most exciting part is getting to interact with local people again.
“I love working at the motel, don’t get me wrong. I get to meet people from all over and I enjoy that, but I’m excited to get to interact with local people at the flower shop,” she said.
Keep up with Blooms and Bling’s progress on their Facebook page and be sure to stop in on Monday.
Clif Gilsdorf, Lois (Juracek) Kreycik, Jerry Dieckman, Joan (McShannon) Ferante, Dennis Stewart, Sharon (Bingham) Young, Leona (Hallvin) Heithold and Arlene (Schnett) Hallen and their spouses got together to celebrate their 60 year reunion.
The millions of “lean, mean, egg-laying machines” left Governor Pete Ricketts amazed Thursday morning as he toured Michael Foods, where he saw first-hand the $100 million investment made to the local economy.
“It really is amazing,” Ricketts said from the viewing room of one of the new cage-free poultry barns west of Bloomfield. “Just thinking of the logistics of bringing them in, feeding them, taking the eggs out. It’s pretty amazing.”
For the third straight year, Nebraska won the Governor’s Cup for having the most economic development projects per capita in the nation, and Michael Foods played a key role, Ricketts said.
During his stop, Ricketts praised the Knox County facility, which employs 110-120 full-time and 30-40 part-time staff.
“When Michael Foods invests here, that’s great for Bloomfield and all of the surrounding communities — all of Northeast Nebraska — because their $100 million investment is helping to create jobs,” he said.
Ricketts said by 2023, Michael Foods hopes to hire an additional 150-200 employees, which not only is more job opportunities, but it also creates opportunities for local farmers.
“They expect to be using 1 million more bushels of corn. Think about that: That’s on top of the 3 million they’re already using,” he said. “This economic investment is a big deal for the state of Nebraska.”
One of the highlights of the stop included a tour of a newly constructed barns for cageless birds. Michael Foods employees told the governor each building holds about 400,000 birds, and after construction is completed, there will be 2.4 million cage-free birds and 1.6 million caged. Eventually, they said, the Bloomfield farm will be entirely cage-free.
Ricketts asked managers a multitude of questions, ranging from the amount of feed consumed (22-25 pounds per 100 birds) to their life cycle (90-95 weeks with 79 weeks spent laying). The birds are hatched and spend their entire life at Michael Foods, where they are raised specifically for laying eggs.
“The logistics are amazing,” Ricketts repeated while viewing the facility where birds have free run of the system. Michael Foods uses an automated system for egg collection.
Managers said the Bloomfield facility will surpass 1 billion eggs for the year in late November or early December. They said each bird lays about 300 eggs per year.
While at Michael Foods, Ricketts presented a signed copy of the Site Selection magazine as a thank you for their continued commitment and part in winning the national accolades. He said Michael Foods is an example of commitment to the community, and he hopes other communities are as welcoming to companies as Bloomfield.
“It’s important to remember that no company invests in a generic place called Nebraska,” he said. “They only invest in communities and want to be welcomed into those communities. That’s important for Bloomfield and all of the communities. You have to think about how you are welcoming those companies. You have to be pro-active and let them know you want them.”
The Bloomfield/Wausa Boy Scout and Cub Scout troops enjoyed a Family Fun night on Wednesday, June 26 th . Many Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and their families attended a night filled with rain gutter regatta races, roasting hot dogs and singing campfire songs. The winner of the regatta races was Pierce Jeannoutot. All the scouts and family members had fun making the regattas and also racing them. A meal was enjoyed that included roasted hot dogs made over a campfire. Then there was another family activity that included learning some Scout songs and singing them with actions. Attending the event were the following Scouts, Jay Jeannoutot, Noel Kumm, Cliffdyn Pruitt, Gavin Chambers, Cole Pinkelman, Carter Kuhlman, Trace Wakeley, Pierce Jeannoutot, Jase Gerdes, Brock Jeannoutot, Alex Ramponi and Casey Jeannoutot. Siblings of scouts attending, and participating were Reed Pinkelman, Harper Chambers, Brening Kumm and Brooklynn Wakeley. Anyone interested in participating in the next Family Fun night can join them on Wednesday, July 31 st at the beach on the South Dakota side of the Lewis and Clark Dam. Please contact Dana Jeannoutot or Tiffanie Wakeley for details.
Glenda Byerly, her parents Ken and Janet Gill and five children, took two goats to visit residents at the local nursing home a few weeks ago.
“We all thought it would be fun to surprise the staff and residents with the goats,” Byerly said. “They are fainting goats so they are unique.”
These particular goats are small enough for the children to carry throughout the home. The Gills diapered the goats so no messes would be left behind which made for some laughs.
“It sure made the residents smile,” Byerly said. “They would see the diapers on them and just laugh!”
The residents weren’t the only ones who enjoyed the visit. Sophia Lauck, Cohen Gill, Tiernee Freeman, Kaitlyn Byerly and Ava McFarland also enjoyed bringing the goats to see the residents.
They are all 4-H members of various Knox County clubs, according to Byerly.
“They are just good friends wanting to do a random act of kindness,” she said. “The residents all hoped we’d come back again.”
Today, Governor Pete Ricketts will kick off a Governor’s Cup victory tour with a visit to NelNet in Lincoln. He will also travel to Omaha, Columbus, Norfolk, Bloomfield, Minden, and Sidney on the tour. Nebraska won the 2018 Governor’s Cup from Site Selection magazine for having the most economic development projects per capita in the nation. This is the third consecutive year Nebraska has won the prestigious economic development award. During the victory tour, Governor Ricketts will thank businesses across the state that helped win the Governor’s Cup.
At some tour stops, the Governor will deliver brief remarks before taking questions. The tour is open to credentialed media.
Details for the Governor’s Cup victory tour are as follows:
Tuesday, July 9
9:30 a.m. Nelnet, 401 S. 21st Street, LINCOLN
10:30 a.m. GeneSeek, 4131 N. 48th Street, LINCOLN
1:45 p.m. Greater Omaha Packing, 3001 L Street, OMAHA
3:15p.m. i2c Inc., 11506 Nicholas Street, Suite 105, OMAHA
4:15 p.m. BuilderTrend, 11818 I St; OMAHA
Thursday, July 11
10:15 a.m. Michael Foods, 54080 NE 84, BLOOMFIELD
1:30 p.m. Weiland Doors, 806 W. S. Airport Road, NORFOLK
3:30 p.m. Becton Dickinson East, 920 19th Street E, COLUMBUS
Friday, July 12
Central Standard Time
9:30a.m. Royal Engineered Composites, 1046 E. 9th Street, MINDEN
Mountain Standard Time
1:45 p.m. MMP Enterprises, 3200 Road 101, SIDNEY
2:30 p.m. NexGen Outiftters, 100 Commerce Court, SIDNEY
3:00 p.m. Western Nebraska Community College Innovation & Entrepreneurship Center, 100 Commerce Court, SIDNEY
3:30 p.m. UST Global, 812 13th Avenue, SIDNEY
The 2019 Kelly’s Kids Poker Run started on June 15 with 66 people registering at Bottoms Up. They departed Bloomfield and motored to Fordyce stopping at the Longhorn Saloon to draw the second card. Then they drove to Vermillion to the Old Lumber Company, drawing the third card and enjoying food. They then made their way to Yankton and stopped at the Ice House where the owner showed participants how he smashed the aluminum cans, Then they headed west to the lake and stopped at Stingers. They drove over the dam and stopped at C.J.’s, where they enjoyed the scenery from the patio. Participants arrived back at Bottoms Up to announce the top 5 winners of the poker hands.
The Husker tickets donated by Phil Schoeder and the tailgate party donated by Big Iron Auctions went to Jeff Fehringer. The golf outing at Crofton Lakeview Golf Course donated by Farmers and Merchants Insurance Co. went to Kaylee Mulder.
The John Deere tool box donated by Grossenberg Impl. and tool gift card from Stan Houston EQ. went to Andrew Bernt. Spencer Miller received the car detailing package from Martinez Auto and Detailing. Entry for next year’s Kelly’s Kids and a t-shirt went to Darci Barger. The worst hand cash prize donated by Chad and Emilee Braunsroth went to Amanda Mannhalter.
The road sponsors this year were Kane Fiedler-Fiedler Farms, Bruegman Excavaion, REM Construction, Family First Dentail, Blake Bartels LLC, Braunsroth Trucking, Bottoms Up, Freeman Oil LLC, Old Lumber Company and Mark Miller.
The raffle winners were Deb Guenther for the half hog donated by Terry Rikowski of Pierce.
The Harley Davidson collage donated by Kurt and Barb Campbell was won by Steph Rupert who then donated it to be auctioned off. The auction items were donated by many individuals and businesses and consisted of metal beer signs, etched mirror, Trace Adkins signed guitar and shirt, wine racks and wine, Kelly’s Kids t-shirt quilt, Big Iron cooler, Kelly’s Kids corn hole boards, half pork and Rolling Hills Golf Course outing.
The Hive in Bloomfield has made many lists over the years, including the top five things to do in Knox County list. This year, The Hive and The LemonDrop Boutique have made it onto the 10th edition of the Nebraska Passport.
This passport includes 70 locations in Nebraska, and The Hive and LemonDrop Boutique have put Bloomfield on the map, making it a destination many have and will continue to visit.
The 2019 Nebraska Passport booklet can be picked up at any of the 70 locations. It includes a map, a list of the stops, information about each stop and a prize entry form.
According to the booklet, the passport adventure is a treasure map to Nebraska’s hidden gems. It also warns people that “passporting” is addicting and that there is nothing quite like the excitement you feel while embarking on a new adventure or the sense of accomplishment when you receive a stamp from a location.
The idea is to get as many people - local and tourists - to venture around the state and fall in love with Nebraska.
Filling the passport book is most of the fun. To receive a stamp, participants simply visit the destination and let the staff know they are there for a stamp. If the location is closed, there are other options as well.
“We aren’t open Sunday or Monday,” Sonny Nagengast, owner of The Hive said. “Our backup location is Broadway Billies or participants can download the app and once they are close enough to our location, they get a stamp digitally.”
Nagengast started seeing visitors in May and has welcomed many more thanks to the Nebraska Passport. According to Nagengast there have been around 200 visitors in the month of June.
“Seldom people will just get a stamp and leave, but a lot of them stick around the store and in town,” she said. “It is such a great way to show off our little town.”
Any business can apply to be in the passport program. There are different categories including: Not-at-all what you thought, quirky Nebraska, rural gems, bite of Nebraska, beautiful Nebraska, family fun, Nebraska stories, history alive, happy hour and shop Nebraska. The Hive has been selected for the rural gems category.
People can participate in the passport in many ways. They can visit all the stops in a single category, they can visit the stops in a certain vicinity or they can try to get as many stops as possible. The prize for 10 stamps is a Passport 10th anniversary keepsake, 25 stamps is a visit Nebraska calendar, 50 stamps is Baker’s Candies gift box, 70 stamps is a Passport Champion t-shirt and $100 in Nebraska Lottery vouchers.
“I had a retired couple visit me at the end of May,” Nagengast said. “They had almost been to all the stops already!”
The couple’s goal is to beat the summer rush to all the locations and spend the rest of the summer re-visiting their favorite locations.
“It’s such a neat idea,” Nagengast said.
Although representing Bloomfield on the passport map has been largely beneficial for The Hive, Nagengast said she is only allowed to be on the passport once every four years. She said she hopes other businesses in the area will apply in the future.
“I think a lot of businesses around Knox County could benefit from applying to be a part of the passport,” she said. “And it is so easy!”
After sending in an application to be listed as a stop on the passport, businesses are then notified which category they will be in and given a stamp.
Nebraska Passport booklets are available online and new participants are welcome to start their voyage at any time. Prize drawings will be drawn and notified in October.
The American Legion is celebrating 100 years this year and Bloomfield’s Auxiliary Post 249 celebrated by hosting their annual potluck dinner on June 26.
“Every year we invite the veterans from the Norfolk Veterans’ Home,” organizer Lu Jessen said.
They join the local veterans and their families for the dinner. This year, as they gathered to celebrate the 100th year of the American Legion, they ended up planning a future for it.
About 18 veterans visited this year from Norfolk for the potluck dinner. Legion riders escorted them into Bloomfield’s community center for the meal. Kenna, Sydney and Hailey Kronberg and Avery Bargman and Charleigh Mach welcomed the vets. Alexandra Eisenhauer also joined the festivities and received many compliments when she sang the National Anthem.
Kenna, Sydney and Hailey are the daughters of Tony Kronberg and Avery Bargman and Charleigh Mach are the daughters of Gayle and Jody Mach. These girls make up the Junior Auxiliary.
“The girls went down to the veterans home with us in May,” Jessen said. “Those kids were fantastic with the veterans.”
Jessen invited the girls to attend the potluck event and they led everyone present in the Pledge of Allegiance and helped veterans through the buffet of food. They dished up plates and wheeled people in wheelchairs through.
“Everyone enjoyed visiting with the girls and loved their company,” Jessen said. “I should have planned more events because they didn’t want to go back to Norfolk.”
Jessen said there was a new veteran who visited this year. Originally from Howells, it is his first year in the Norfolk Veterans’ Home. The 93 year old man gave her something special he had made. It was a popsicle stick craft he had made into Jesus on the cross.
He shared his story with Jessen and the girls about how he was in Berlin when the Germans surrendered.
Jessen hopes she can set up interviews for the Junior Auxiliary to go to Norfolk or local rest homes and talk to the veterans about their experiences.
“What an opportunity for those girls to learn,” Jessen said.
She said she hopes the Junior Auxiliary will flourish and that the girls continue to participate and get more younger kids involved.
“The veterans absolutely love seeing the younger kids interested in their stories,” Jessen said.