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ATTENTION DESIGNER! Please make sure there is a .25-inch margin on all sides of this ad where no text or logos are present!


Welcome Welcome to Keith County! n behalf of the Ogallala/Keith County Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors and the Keith County business community, I am pleased to welcome you to Keith County, Nebraska! People of all ages and backgrounds are drawn to the Keith County area because of the excellent quality of life found here. We have so many things to offer: endless outdoor recreation, a thriving business community, a quiet, friendly environment, superior health care, low crime rate, a vast agricultural community and a rich old-west history. All this and more makes Keith County the perfect place to live, work and play! The Chamber of Commerce serves as the central agency for development of business, industry and civic interests— performing tasks that no individual can do alone. We are a dynamic organization with over 400 members that work together to PROSPER our local economy, PROMOTE the community, CONNECT members to one-another and REPRESENT the interests of business to government. As the advocate for the business community, the Chamber provides programs and services to ensure a favorable business climate, and acts as the vehicle to promote the area’s economic and social progress.

Keith County has much to offer you, your business and your family. Whether you are visiting or relocating, we know you’ll enjoy your stay! Please contact us for more information, or to help make your transition to Keith County a profitable one. All the best, Brenda Ketcham, President/CEO Ogallala/Keith County Chamber of Commerce P.O. Box 628 ............................................................(308) 284-4066 Ogallala, NE 69153 .................................................(800) 658-4390 brenda@explorekeithcounty.com

For over 75 years the Chamber has been—and will continue to be—a force for constructive change in the region.

(308) 284-4465 FAX 284-4486

M-F 7:30-5:30 SAT 7:30-12:00

AUTOMOTIVE SERVICE SOLUTIONS, LLC For all your automotive repair needs. Brakes • Exhaust • Heating & A/C • Tune-Ups • Oil Changes Engine & Transmission Repairs PAM PALSER and KERRY FENWICK Owners 2808 Spruce Acres Ogallala, NE 69153 www.automotivessllc.com 2

• www.explorekeithcounty.com

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AUTO PARTS

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221 North Spruce Ogallala, NE 69153

315 East A St. Ogallala, NE 69153

Bus: 308-284-6034 • Toll Free: 800-508-6034 • Fax: 308-284-6855 www.westerninsurors.com

www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Contents • WHAT’S INSIDE

2 6 7 8 12 17 18 20 21 22 24 25 28 29

Welcome to Keith County! Agriculture “Strong and Growing” Keith County “By the Numbers” Communities “A Place to Call Home” Economic Development “Open for Business” Education “Learning to Succeed” Healthcare “Health and Fitness” Shopping “A Perfect Match” Dining “Treats and Eats” Lodging “Be Our Guest” Housing “Home Sweet Home” Recreation “Western Paradise” Worship “Keeping the Faith” Index of Advertisers

PIERCE LAW OFFICE Philip E. Pierce Attorney At Law 113 East Second Street • Ogallala, NE 69153 308-284-4424 409 Broadway • Imperial, NE 69033 866-431-4424 toll free

www.piercelawoffice.net Admitted in Nebraska & Colorado

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• www.explorekeithcounty.com


CEO/President Daniel M. Nugara Executive Vice President Joseph C. Nugara, Sr. This is a Village Profile® Publication created and produced for the Ogallala/Keith County Chamber of Commerce P.O. Box 628 • Ogallala, NE 69153 Phone: 308-284-4066 • Fax: 308-284-3126 Website: www.explorekeithcounty.com Email: info@explorekeithcounty.com

Director of Business Operations Michael D. Nugara Vice President Gordy Swinehart Project Sales Manager Charles Imbert Project Coordinator Stefanie Mikutis Director of Production Joseph C. Nugara, Jr. Production Manager Nick Olah Graphic Designer Kirsten Riedl

Copyright© 2012 VillageProfile.com, inc.® 33 N. Geneva St., Elgin, IL 60120 • 800-600-0134 www.villageprofile.com® Every effort has been made to assure the accuracy of the information in this publication. The Chamber and VillageProfile.com® assume no responsibility for misinformation. Please contact the Chamber with any additions or corrections. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission of the Chamber and VillageProfile.com® is prohibited.

Graphic Production Stacey R. Cordero Ad Design Coordinator Kerri Reaves Photography Bob Alberts–Alberts Photography, Chamber of Commerce Staff

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This publication is printed with eco-friendly criteria including use of 30% post consumer recycled content paper and soy based inks.

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Agriculture • STRONG AND GROWING eith County’s agricultural production, people and water are the foundation of our hospitable county. We have a work ethic second to none. Our clean air and good water also keeps Keith County on the upper end of the “good clean living” scale. Add to that our friendly people, and you will find Keith County a place you would love to call home. Our terrain ranges from level to rolling hills. The river valley to the tableland has everything from silt to sand. Keith County borders the famous Nebraska Sandhills to the north. Keith County contains both natural grassland along with dry land and irrigated farmland. Our average annual rainfall is 18.5 inches. Our temperatures range from below zero (Fahrenheit) in our winter months to highs above the century mark in the summer months. However, our normal ranges would see a mean average in January of 24° and July at 90° Fahrenheit. Although our semi-arid weather would not normally be conducive to raising consistently large crops, Keith County sits over the Ogallala Aquifer. The Aquifer, along with help from the South Platte River via a canal system, allows farmers to irrigate and raise big yields and excellent quality crops. Keith County has 478 farms that average 1,460 acres. The average agricultural products sold per farm is $357,112. The latest total of cattle/calves in Keith County is 54,624 head. Marketing outlets are provided by Farmers Cooperative Association (FCA), and three of the county’s largest feedlots: Twin Valley Feeders, Northwest Cattle Feeders and Spurgin, Inc. Several smaller lots contribute to the total number of cattle being fed. For the past 55 years, the Ogallala Livestock Auction Market has provided local marketing services through regular sales each Wednesday. Special sales are held on Thursdays and Saturdays as advertised. Video marketing is also available.

Agricultural Land Cropland: 280,331 acres Rangeland/Pastureland: 181,275 acres TOTAL: 461,606 acres Agricultural Sales – Market Value Crops: $82,000,000 - 57% Livestock: $60,090,000 - 43% TOTAL: $142,090,000

“Eager to Serve You” 1403 W. 1st Street • Ogallala, NE 69153 (308) 284-8181 • (866) 828-8181 6

• www.explorekeithcounty.com


Keith County • BY THE NUMBERS

COMMUNICATIONS RADIO: KOGA-AM, KOGA-FM, KMCX-FM TV: KNOP-TV (North Platte) NEWSPAPER: Keith County News (2x/week) INTERNET: Allo, Century Link, Charter, Megavision, WildBlue WIRELESS PHONE: US Cellular, Viaero, Verizon CABLE: Charter, Allo SATELLITE: DISH Network, DIRECTV

COUNTY Area: 1,110 square miles (96% land, 4% water) Topography: North of the river – Sandhills (stabilized rolling hills and dunes); South of the river – Tableland (undulating, nearly level topography) Elevation: 3,250 feet (general slope to the east) POPULATION Ogallala (city–Ogallala is the County Seat) 4,737 Paxton (village) 523 Brule (village) 326 Keith County 8,368

TOP 3 PRODUCING INDUSTRIES Agriculture (Farming/Ranching) Manufacturing Tourism

GOVERNMENT Ogallala City Manager/Council (5 members, 3-year terms, mayor)

TOP 5 LARGEST EMPLOYERS American Shizuki Corporation (manufacturing) Ogallala Public School District (education) Banner Health - Ogallala Community Hospital & Banner Health Clinic (health care) Indian Hills Manor/WEL-Life of Ogallala (health care) Keith County (government)

Paxton Village Board (5 members, 4-year terms, chair) Brule Village Board (4 members, 4-year terms, mayor) Keith County (5 commissioners, 4-year terms) TIME ZONE Mountain (Central – 23 miles east)

COST OF LIVING Ogallala Overall: 83.10 Food: 98 Utilities: 94 Miscellaneous: 95

ELEVATION 3,250 feet (general slope to the east) CLIMATE Avg. High Temps: January-40°, July-90° Avg. Rainfall: 18.5 in Avg. Snowfall: 29.9 in

United States 100 100 100 100

H

(based on US average of 100)

J Accounting • Bookkeeping • Payroll Tax Reporting Auditing, Review & Compilations • Management Advisory Services Tax Preparation & Planning • Personal Financial Planning Valuation & Litigation Support • Registered Investment Advisor Albert J. Faesser, CPA • Brian L. Commins, CPA 284-3696 • 221 E. 2nd Street • Ogallala www.cpas-mms.com

TAX INFORMATION The 2011 tax rate in Ogallala was $2.075978 per $100 of actual value. A 1.5 percent city sales tax is imposed in Ogallala. There are no local personal income taxes or inventory taxes.

nfield Electric e K

Q

All Types Wiring Residential - Commercial - Industrial Agricultural - Grain Handling - Irrigation Retail Electrical Supplies

284-4814 617 E. 1st Street • Ogallala, NE 69153 Locally Owned For Over 40 Years www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Communities • A PLACE TO CALL HOME Ogallala Ogallala...hard to spell and unusual to pronounce, but a fantastic place to live and play! Named for the Oglala band of Dakota Sioux and located on the Union Pacific Railroad, Ogallala was a busy cowtown of the Old West. For more than one hundred years, Ogallala has ranked among the state’s top tourism communities. As far back as the 1870s, Ogallala was a booming, bustling community—as the chief gateway to the northern plains. During that decade Texas drovers delivered their trail herds of longhorn cattle by the thousands. During summer months, business boomed. Today, nearly one million people visit the area each year—over 800,000 during the summer months! And Ogallala continues to serve as a regional hub for goods and services to a large portion of western Nebraska. Ogallala is located in the middle of the country—at the junction of Interstate 80 and Highways 26/61, 50 miles west of North Platte and 30 miles east of the Colorado border. Ogallala offers a convenient meeting place for families and groups. Ogallala and the Keith County area provide a wealth of recreational and quality of life opportunities. Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy some of the many area attractions and recreational activities. Families are proud to raise their children in an environment that promotes high scholastic achievement, as well as a healthy lifestyle. Quality health care is also available throughout the county. Ogallala, the county seat of Keith County, has a population of 4,737 (2010 census). City services include: economic development services, public library, indoor and outdoor public pools, public tennis courts, a nine-hole Frisbee golf course, the Western Diamonds Sports Complex, a two-mile paved walking/biking path and five public parks equipped with playground equipment.

CORRELL REFRIGERATION INC. Commercial/Residential Air Conditioning & Heating Commercial Refrigeration

210 South Spruce • Ogallala, NE 69153

800.336.6715 Phone

308.284.6715 Fax

308.284.6786 8

• www.explorekeithcounty.com

Ogallala is also well prepared to handle emergencies. The city of Ogallala and Keith County have a joint enhanced 911 system. The Ogallala Fire Department consists of 36 volunteer members. The ambulance squad consists of 13 EMTs and two student EMTs. Their normal response time is 3-4 minutes from dispatch to leaving the fire hall, depending on the time of day. The Ogallala Police Department has 10 certified law enforcement officers and one civilian employee. The Keith County Sheriff ’s Department is staffed by eight sworn officers and seven support personnel. The Nebraska State Patrol has five patrolmen, two pilots and one investigator stationed in Keith County. Brule Brule, located nine miles west of Ogallala, is a small rural village whose very beginnings are rich with history. In 1886, Major Isaac Barton and his wife, Elizabeth, purchased a quarter section of land they considered the “garden spot of the county” in the “Great American Desert." A lumberyard was built, followed by a store, and soon a community was thriving. Rather than name this community for themselves, the Bartons chose to name it after the 5,000 Brule Sioux Indians who had camped there in 1872. Since its creation, the railroad has brought people and business to and from Brule. Even today, the agricultural products depend upon the railroad, but the economy is also enhanced by other businesses—including a bank, restaurant, lumberyard, embroidery and three auto repair shops.


Paxton Paxton is located 19 miles east of Ogallala on Interstate 80 mile marker 145. Originally called “Alkali” for the alkaline content in the soil, the name was changed to “Paxton” in 1885 for a prominent rancher in the area, W.A. Paxton. Paxton’s early years were incredible. History records that in 1872 a herd of buffalo, just over the hill to the north of the North Platte Valley, stretched from O’Fallons to Ogallala—a distance of 32 miles! In mid-to-late 1875, hundreds of emigrant wagons and railroad carloads passed by Paxton. In August of 1876, trains were delayed several hours by grasshoppers that darkened the sky and covered the ground, tracks and all.

With a population of 326 (2010 Census), Brule is a tightly-knit community. Churches located in Brule are St. John’s Lutheran Church and United Church of Christ Congregational. A consolidated school system, located in Big Springs, serves grades K-12 for the community. The Village Board consists of a mayor and four board members elected to four-year terms. Services available in the village of Brule include the Brule Volunteer Fire Department, Brule Volunteer Ambulance and the U.S. Post Office. Brule has an active calendar of events including the Ice Cream Social and the annual Brule Gun Show in February, the Fireman’s Ball in March, the Alumni Celebration and Brule Day in August, Brule Gun Show in September, and the annual Hometown Holiday Open House in December.

In the 1930s, Paxton became well-known for a bar operated by an adventurous man named Rosser “Ole” Herstedt. The bar was named Ole’s and featured a walnut bar that had been crafted for the Plains Hotel in Cheyenne, WY, that Ole won in a baseball game. Ole’s big-game hunting hobby began taking over the look

Big Springs • 889-3636 Brule • 287-2304 Ogallala • 284-6036 Feed Department • 284-4222

DUKE’S AUTOBODY AND PAINT 107 State Street • Brule, NE

308-287-2313 Let us take care of all your Autobody, Frame, Paint, Glass & Watercraft Needs. THINK GREEN TODAY, FOR A BETTER TOMORROW

24 Hour Towing Now Available www.dukesautobodyandpaint.com “WHERE QUALITY IS NEVER AN ACCIDENT”

Cenex Convenience Store • 284-6184 A & W Family Restaurant 284-6231 1103 West 1st, West Highway 30

24 Hour Cardtrol Pumps Cenex - I80 203 Stage Coach Trail • Ogallala 284-3215

www.brulefca.com www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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of his bar. In 1969, Ole shot a polar bear on Russia’s Chukchi Sea and a full mount of the huge white bear was brought back to the bar and put on display just inside the door. The polar bear became the trademark for Ole’s and is there still today. Today, Paxton is a town of 538 people and boasts a wide variety of services, including restaurants, grocery store, motel, bank, lumberyard, insurance, realtor and an auction service. Keith County’s first winery opened its doors here in 2008. The Paxton Village Board consists of five board members elected to four-year terms. A Chairman of the Board of Trustees is appointed to a one-year term. Public services offered in Paxton include a fire hall with 30 volunteer fire and rescue members, post office, library, a park with an outdoor pool and ball field. Church services are available from St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, New Life Lutheran Church, Mennonite Church and the United Methodist Church. Paxton also offers a public school for grades Kindergarten through 12. Keystone Keystone, an unincorporated community of approximately 59 people, is located on the north bank of the North Platte River in the northeast part of Keith County. Keystone was founded in 1906 on a piece of pasture land deeded to the public by pioneer businessman and rancher William Paxton, Sr. The name came from Paxton’s brand, the Keystone. Keystone is surrounded by fertile farmland that produces cattle, wheat, corn and hay. Keystone is home to the Little Church at Keystone—the only church of its kind in the world. In the pioneering days of the 1880s, both Catholics and Protestants felt the need for a church, but neither group had the finances to build a church of their own. A dispensation by Pope Leo XIII allowed a church to be built to serve both groups’ needs—with a Catholic altar on one end, a Protestant altar on the opposite end, and reversible pews to serve both congregations.

“WORLDWIDE ADVENTURE, HOMETOWN HOSPITALITY” Located 1 mile north of I-80 Exit 145 • Paxton, NE

Established 1933 – Featuring Nebraska Beef Main Street • Paxton, NE • (308) 239-4500 www.olesbiggame.com 10

• www.explorekeithcounty.com


Keystone today is an agriculture-based community and consists of a post office, a library, a bank, restaurants, a church and a telephone company. The rural Keystone-Lemoyne Fire Department serves the Keystone area. Lemoyne Lemoyne, an unincorporated community of approximately 82 people, was named for Lemoyne Jacobs, a large landowner who donated the land for the community and the railroad. Due to the construction of Kingsley Dam and Lake McConaughy, the original town of Lemoyne was moved out of the Platte River Valley to

its present location—on the north shore of Lake McConaughy on Highway 92. Today, Lemoyne is served by a post office, convenience stores, a restaurant, a church, a telephone company and an active Senior Center. The rural Keystone-Lemoyne Fire Department serves the Lemoyne area. Because of its close proximity to Lake McConaughy, Lemoyne’s economy is largely based on tourism. The small rural community swells to nearly triple its size in the recreational summer months, and several businesses cater to the tourists and are open seasonally.

The Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District Owner/Operator of Lake McConaughy, Kingsley Dam and Kingsley Hydroplant Irrigation served by other irrigation projects. In addition, groundwater Central’s system of canals, laterals, and pipelines supply irri- recharge from Central’s system benefits more than 310,000 gation water to 112,000 acres in south-central Nebraska and acres irrigated with wells. Lake McConaughy stores water for another 110,000 acres Hydropower Central operates four hydroelectric power plants, including the 50-megawatt Kingsley Hydro. Hydropower provides energy without producing waste products or emissions into the air. The fuel – water – is renewable and using water for hydroelectric production is a non-consumptive use.

visitors annually. The lake provides a wide variety of recreational opportunities and provides a multi-million dollar boost to Keith County’s economy.

Wildlife Habitat Lake McConaughy and the surrounding environs teem with wildlife. The lake is ranked as the best place in Nebraska and the third-best place in the nation for bird watching. Central monitors and protects nest sites established on McConaughy’s beaches by the threatened piping plover and the endangered least tern and has taken an active role in creating and Recreation preserving wildlife habitat at Lake McConaughy and the Platte Lake McConaughy is Nebraska’s largest lake and one of the River Valley. state’s most popular recreation sites with more than 750,000

Kingsley Dam Office: (308) 284-2332 • Holdrege Headquarters: (308) 995-8601 • Website: www.cnppid.com www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Economic Development • OPEN FOR BUSINESS

eith County is a great place to live, work and play. We are fortunate to have a balance of all the major factors that aid and encourage existing businesses to grow and to attract new businesses to relocate here—plentiful land to develop, easy access to all modes of transportation, fiber-optic technology capabilities, quality workforce, abundant utilities and exceptional quality of life. Availability of transportation in Keith County is excellent. We are served by a main line of the Union Pacific Railroad with 80 freight trains daily. Interstate 80 is located within Ogallala’s city limits. U.S. Highway 30, U.S. Highway 26 and Nebraska Highway 61 intersect in Ogallala—with a Highway 26/61 truck route west of Ogallala. Searle Field, Keith County’s municipal airfield, has two paved and lighted runways (5,100 feet and 3,700 feet), with charter service available. Trailways and Arrow Stage Lines provide daily service to Ogallala with both westbound and eastbound buses. The city of Ogallala also provides a public transit bus, for a small boarding fee, available to everyone (handicapped accessible). Century Link is the local exchange carrier in the Ogallala area with a high-speed digital central office. Allo Communications has recently developed their fiber-optic telecommunications in the Ogallala area—with 50 Mbps download/upload standard offering to residences, up to 1G available to homes and businesses, and over 30 miles of fiber installed in Ogallala.

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• www.explorekeithcounty.com

Availability of utilities is also excellent, with close access to an abundant supply of electricity, natural gas and water. The labor force of Keith County is well-known for its high work ethic and reliability, and easily draws from a radius of over 50 miles— providing a labor market of over 55,000. And of course, the western Nebraska quality of life is second-to-none here, with ideal recreational opportunities in boating, fishing, hunting, camping and golfing in Keith County. It is a truly dynamic time in the growth and development of Keith County business. In the past two years, Keith County has welcomed more than 25 new businesses, three new owners for existing businesses, and nine major business expansions/ relocations. Some of the projects include: a brand-new, state-ofthe-art expanded local campus for Mid-Plains Community College; a new $2 million facility for Tri-State Generation and Transmission; expansion to our community recreation center; a new Fed Ex operations site; and new fiber optic phone/internet/ tv company—Allo Communications. Building permits in Keith County increased from $1.5 million in 2010, to $5.7 million in 2011; and sales tax revenues have shown 10 consecutive months of improvement over the previous year. Ogallala’s downtown business district has also been awarded a Downtown Revitalization Grant in the amount of $350,000—improvement construction to begin in 2013. Keith County also offers a tremendous balance of opportunities to new and existing businesses and entrepreneurs. West Central


Nebraska Development District, an 18-county program with their main office located in Ogallala, has created a Business Incubator program to nurture the development of entrepreneurial companies, helping them survive and grow during the early years when they are most vulnerable.

AGRICULTURE While we are obviously heavily influenced by our surrounding agricultural resources, we have a balanced influence of both farming (along the Platte Valley) and ranching (in the Sandhills) that offers unmatched diversity in agricultural opportunities. (See page 6 for more info)

MANUFACTURING Ten manufacturing firms currently call Keith County home— some dating back to the 1940s. Ogallala’s long history with electronics continues today with American Shizuki/ASC

City of Ogallala Department of Economic Development

Travis Haggard, Economic Development Coordinator 411 East 2nd St. • Ogallala, Nebraska 69153 308-284-6623 Office • 308-289-1077 Cell travis.haggard@ogallala-ne.gov

www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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LEGEND

®

®

This is an exclusive Village Profile Convergence Publishing Program publication, combining print, the Internet and mobile medias. Every effort has been made to assure the accuracy of the information in this publication. The Chamber and VillageProfile.com® assume no responsibility for misinformation. Please contact the Chamber with any additions or corrections. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission of the Chamber and VillageProfile.com® is prohibited.

®

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Capacitors and Arnold Magnetic Technologies/Ogallala Electronics Division. Paxton is home to PVC manufacturer Titan Industries. Precision Machining does lathe and mill work production. Newer manufacturing industries include Ogallala Comfort Company with their development of milkweed fibers into fine quality down comforters and body care, Ogallala Bay Rum Company’s home-grown, vintage after shave and bath products, and RCS Software developing innovative solutions for the broadcasting industry. TOURISM Tourism is a major economic factor in Keith County. Nearby Lake McConaughy drew over 850,000 visitors in 2010, making it the third highest ranked visitor attraction in the state of Nebraska. Keith County also draws visitors each year to Front Street—famous for their saloon and annual summer revue, Mansion on the Hill, Boot Hill, Ole’s Steakhouse, the world-class Petrified Wood Gallery, and Walk of Fame attractions.

your questions, provide you with information for business relocation, expansion and available incentives. (www.ogallalaeconomicdevelopment.com) • Keith County Area Development (KCAD) – A local non-profit organization that acts as a central resource to promote development, foster long-range planning and coordinate financial aid and incentives. (www.kcad.org) • Ogallala/Keith County Chamber of Commerce – The Chamber is a member-based organization that works to “Prosper, Promote, Connect, and Represent Business in Keith County.” (www.explorekeithcounty.com) • Community Redevelopment Authority (CRA) – The city of Ogallala’s CRA can offer Tax Increment Financing on qualified projects. • Keith County Regional Economic Development Investment (REDI) Program – This program administers a revolving loan fund that is targeted to help small businesses that may not qualify for conventional financing.

LOCAL ORGANIZATIONS Keith County has an array of local organizations that stand ready to help facilitate business expansion and/or relocation. • City of Ogallala Economic Development Office – Economic Development Coordinator Travis Haggard is ready to answer

24-H o Wrec ur ker Serv ice

• Along with those organizations, all municipalities located in Keith County (County Commissioners, city of Ogallala, villages of Brule and Paxton) are all fully committed to future economic development. • NPPD Community Facts Book – http://sites.nppd.com/aedc/FactsBook/Ogallalabook.pdf Come to play, come to stay in beautiful Keith County!

Ogallala Ready Mix “Quality Controlled Ready Mixed Concrete” EXCAVATING & SITE PREPARATION

(308)

284-3678

Cell 289-5529 or 289-3507

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• www.explorekeithcounty.com

ALL LANDSCAPING ROCK www.simoncontractors.com

108 West I Street Ogallala, NE 69153

All Concrete Products and Blocks 308-284-2612

Ogallala, NE

308-284-3933


Education • LEARNING TO SUCCEED eith County Schools have successfully created an academic environment where excellence in education, student academic progress, ongoing community support and individual student development are the primary focus. All schools within the county are dedicated to the mission that students will be provided with a safe and positive learning environment and the necessary tools to achieve academic excellence. This has been accomplished through a comprehensive plan of encompassing curriculum and personal development.

grade school students have classroom access to computers. South Platte Public Schools also offer a K-12 curriculum.

District 1, in Ogallala, offers a comprehensive Preschool-12 curriculum, articulated through the grades with planned skills and experiences designed to complement prior experiences. An emphasis on early literacy, with individual assessment and instruction, develops the initial skills necessary for continued academic success in the child’s educational experiences.

MID-PLAINS COMMUNITY COLLEGE As a public institution of higher education, Mid-Plains Community College has four extended campuses to meet educational needs in 18 counties. The Ogallala Extended Campus serves Perkins, Keith and Arthur counties. Located at 512 East B Street South, the new MPCC Ogallala Extended Campus consists of five classrooms, a shop area, a large community room and distance learning capabilities. The curriculum includes, but is not limited to, transferable general education courses, computer and technical courses, as well as GED preparation and ESL/English as a Second Language. MPCC is committed to strengthening local business and industry by offering customized training and assisting with economic development efforts.

A K-12 Special Education program provides the specialized instruction designed to meet the needs of all students, birth to 21, who have found learning more challenging than others, or who might have physical or mental handicaps. The high school offers a wide range of learning opportunities for students, and extends its course offerings through distance learning classes, college classes and an alternative education program for students who learn best in a non-traditional setting.

Keith County offers two private Christian schools: St. Paul’s Lutheran School (Preschool-5th) and St. Luke’s Catholic School (Preschool-5th), where the student is offered an environment in which the school combines an emphasis on the basics of academics with a commitment to developing the Christian values of integrity, morality, responsibility and respect for the rights of others.

Keith County School Systems have made the educational needs and individual development of each student paramount, and Technology is an important aspect in the district’s approach to strive to provide a setting where each child can maximize his/her instruction and learning. Technology competencies are designed potential with the long-term goal of becoming a responsible and assessed for both students and teachers. Multiple computer member of the community. labs exist throughout the district, and in 2012-13, students in grades 9-12 will each be issued an iPad for their OGALLALA PAXTON SO. PLATTE ST. PAUL’S ST. LUKE’S use during the school year. (PS-12) (K-12) (K-12) (PS-5) (K-5) Advantages include the ability to Enrollment: 895 228 187 69 34 teach social responsibility/digital Teachers: 90 23 24 5 4 citizenship for technology usage, the Support Staff: 57 20 12 3 5 ability to teach students to deal with massive amounts of information the Teacher-Student Radio: 11:1 10:1 7:1 12:1 8:1 Internet provides, as well as students and staff all being on the same page. Interscholastic sports and extracurricular activities play an important role in the Ogallala Public Schools’ planned experiences for the students, and are enthusiastically and proudly supported by the community. In addition to the traditional sports offerings, some of the activities available for student participation include Key Club, Drama, Speech, Band, Vocal Music, student clubs in Art, Science and Foreign Language, as well as the National Honor Society. Several other schools in Keith County offer excellent educational opportunities. Paxton Public Schools offers a K-12 curriculum, and in 2010-11 added a new gym, locker and weight rooms, classrooms, office space, commons area and cafeteria. Students in grades 7-12 are issued a personal laptop for use during the academic year and www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Healthcare • HEALTH AND FITNESS eith County has a number of healthcare and wellness centers available that are dedicated to your health and fitness. A quality hospital, two medical clinics, home health options, district health department and professional senior care are all available here. Banner Health/Ogallala Community Hospital offers acute and primary medical care to the rural communities of west-central Nebraska. The hospital provides 24-hour emergency services and has been designated a Basic Level Trauma Center. General and orthopedic surgeons are on staff along with services such as Laboratory, Radiology, Sleep Studies, Infusion Therapy, Women’s Services, Physical and Speech Therapy and Pharmacy. Ogallala Community Hospital features an on-site clinic, Banner Health Clinic, as well as a Specialty Clinic offering a wide range of visiting specialties including but not limited to heart care, cancer care, urology, ophthalmology, gastroenterology, oncology, bariatric surgery, OB/GYN, and Ear, Nose and Throat.

pressure clinics, CPR classes and bioterrorism education and training. Sandhills District Health Department also offers a walk-in medical clinic with affordable medical care, school, sport and Medicare physicals, CDL physicals and diabetic and lab screenings. If additional care is required during recovery, the staff of Sidney Regional Medical Center is ready to step in and assist in helping patients recover as quickly and fully as possible in the comfort of their own homes. From home oxygen equipment to a complete line of physical and respiratory rehabilitation supplies, Good Air Home Medical and Fitness Equipment provides for a broad range of needs, including mastectomy fitting and supplies from experienced and caring staff. Indian Hills Manor is an 82-bed, long-term care facility, which has been located in Western Nebraska since 1965 and has been a member of the Lantis Living Network since 1976. Quality nursing care is provided 24 hours, seven days a week. A familyoriented facility, Indian Hills Manor is dedicated to excellence and providing quality care with respect, dignity and kindness. They also offer rehabilitation services such as occupational therapy, physical therapy and speech/language pathology. WEL-Life of Ogallala is a 34-unit assisted living center with four styles of apartments and several different levels of assistance available. Amenities include homemade meals, a library, laundry services, whirlpool, beauty shop and a private dining room. Additional services available in Keith County include three dentists, four optometrists, an orthodontist, four chiropractors, a physical therapist, three massage therapists, three pharmacies and four fitness facilities.

Originally opened in 1952, Ogallala Community Hospital relocated to a newly built facility in 2000, dramatically revolutionizing its ability to provide residents of Keith County and surrounding areas with excellent patient care. In 2005, the hospital completed a clinic expansion and renovation, and now has a master facility plan underway to add needed space and services. Ogallala Community Hospital has been certified by Medicare as an 18-bed Critical Access Hospital. It has 130 employees, making it one of the county’s largest employers. Family Medical Center is a locally owned clinic with two Medical Doctors, two Physician Assistants and three medical assistants on staff. Established in 1988, Family Medical Center provides family care, surgery, pediatrics, orthopedic services and sports medicine. Digital x-ray and lab services are done in house. Sandhills District Health Department serves five counties offering child and adult immunizations, health education, blood 18

• www.explorekeithcounty.com


Shopping • A PERFECT MATCH gallala and Keith County have numerous and diverse shopping opportunities. Stroll through Ogallala’s downtown business district and you will find interesting shops and friendly merchants. You will find the latest women’s clothing styles, beautiful jewelry, unique gifts, crafts and fabrics, elegant home furnishings, appliances, western wear, coffee shops and restaurants. Throughout the county, there are distinctive shopping opportunities including antiques and collectibles. Discount and grocery stores carry nearly everything needed whether you live in Keith County or are visiting. You will find competitive prices, smiling faces and a welcoming attitude when you shop in Keith County!

502 E. First St. • Ogallala, NE I-80 Exit 126 308-284-4703 • 800-642-4703

TRAIL ’S END Gifts, Antiques, Collectibles Coffee’s Always On! Wheelchair Friendly Monday-Saturday 10:00-6:30 • Sunday 1:00-5:00

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• www.explorekeithcounty.com

Karie Hansmeier owner/manager

Specializing in Women’s Clothing, Tuxedos & Accessories Hours: Mon.-Fri. 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 101 North Spruce 308-284-3275 Ogallala, NE 69153 Email: clothingcloset@clothing-closet.com


Dining • TREATS AND EATS

hether you want a quick bite on the run or a four-course meal, Keith County offers more than 30 restaurants to choose from. For a quick meal, select one of the many fast food restaurants available; for a sit-down dining experience choose a hometown café or an elegant steakhouse. You can find nearly every variety of food here, from authentic burritos to deli sandwiches, Nebraska-bred juicy steaks to genuine Chinese cuisine, and coffee shop favorites to loaded pizzas.

Taste the Tradition

Pizza / Pasta Buffet & Salad Bar • Dine-In • Delivery Carry Out • Catering • Online Ordering Available Event Center & Meeting Rooms

308-284-3603 55 River Road I-80 Interchange Ogallala, NE 69153 www.valsogallala.com – Find us on Facebook www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Lodging • BE OUR GUEST isitors can find a lodging facility to meet any need in Keith County. A wide selection of rooms are available from over 30 lodging facilities located in Keith County. We have chain motels with all the amenities, historic hotels on the Lincoln Highway and seasonal hotels and cabins located at Lake McConaughy. Prefer the great outdoors? Keith County has comfortable, tree-lined campgrounds with full hook-ups near the Interstate or the lake— perfect for your stay for any length of time. We invite you to come and stay with us in Keith County!

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• www.explorekeithcounty.com


QUALITY INN & CONFERENCE CENTER Quality Full Service Hotel 101 Newly Renovated rooms Free Denny’s Breakfast Coupon

Outdoor heated swimming pool Full Service Conference Center Weddings • Meetings • Banquets Conventions • Parties • Reunions

Great Food, Great Service, Great Fun! 201 Chuckwagon Rd., Ogallala, NE 308-284-3623 • 1-800-573-7148 www.choicehotels.com/hotel/ne100

Premier Family Dining Open 24 Hours a day 7 days a week! Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner Anytime! Kids Eat Free on Tuesdays

Nightly Drink Specials • Entertainment Pool Tables • Karaoke • Dart Games 10 Big Screen TVs • Hot Hors’Doeuvres

www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Housing • HOME SWEET HOME uality housing makes Keith County a wonderful place to live and raise a family. Whether you are looking for a home in the country, in the city, overlooking a golf course, or on beautiful Lake McConaughy, you can find just the right place in Keith County. In 2011, 172 homes sold in the Keith County area, ranging in price from $7,000 to $296,000. During that same period, five lots, 15 commercial properties and 18 acreages were also sold in Keith County. Five banks in Keith County are available to help with your real estate loan needs. Retail electric services are supplied to Keith County area residents by Nebraska Public Power District, Midwest Electric Membership Corporation and Wheatbelt Public Power District. SourceGas is the natural gas supplier and the local municipalities supply the water and sewer services. The Ogallala Housing Authority has 40 units for low-income elderly and families. Both one and two-bedroom units are available, as well as three laundromats and a community room. Ogallala Village consists of 30 units in four buildings. One and

two bedroom units are available for elderly or couples, and a laundromat and community room is included. Rent subsidies are available. Also available are Oakridge Apartments, built in 2003 and Great West Townhomes built in 2007. Both are 16-unit, low-income duplexes that were built by Excel Development Group and the Keith County Housing Development Corporation. Oakridge has two-bedroom units and Great West Townhomes has eight two-bedroom units and eight three-bedroom units available.

Now look at our homes from anywhere!! See pictures and information at

www.fullerrealty.net or Realtor.com Fuller & Associates Realty, LLC (308) 284-2100 or (866) 703-8637 100 North Spruce Street

Cobb Realty, Inc.

Ogallala, Nebraska 69153

308-284-4104

We are the oldest Real Estate company in Ogallala. Our company is glad to show houses any weekend or evening, just call us. B. Diane England, Owner Home Phone: 308-284-6215 Cell: 308-289-4653 (Not always on) E-mail: dianee@megavision.com Nicole Walburn Cell: 308-289-2209 E-mail: nicolew@megavision.com Joyce Mickelson Cell: 612-867-6632 Email: joycem@megavision.com

319 E. “A” St. • Ogallala, NE 69153 www.cobbrealtyinc.com 24

• www.explorekeithcounty.com


Recreation • WESTERN PARADISE little bit of paradise, right here in Nebraska. Ogallala is the proud home of Lake McConaughy, a treasure that brings folks from all over to enjoy the serenity of the white sand beaches and the brilliant blue sky of Nebraska. Add great fishing, hunting, watersports, bird watching and plenty of crystal clear water…paradise! Lake McConaughy Nearly everything about Lake McConaughy is big! Its 30,500 surface acres makes it Nebraska’s largest reservoir withover 100 miles of shore line. At full storage, the lake is 22 miles long, four miles wide and 142 feet deep at the dam. The dam is among the largest of its type in the world, and the fish grow to trophy proportions, accounting for several state records. Even its

Sales

nickname, “Big Mac” reflects its giant stature. The lake is a mecca for sailboard and board sailing enthusiasts, as well as fishermen and campers. Concessionaires around the lake offer restaurants, lodging, board rentals, convenience/grocery stores, horseback riding, guide services, jet ski rentals, scuba diving, parasailing and RV campgrounds. Lake Ogallala Situated just below Kingsley Dam, Lake Ogallala is an integral part of the Lake McConaughy recreation complex. Known as the “little lake,” it was formed when fill material was removed to build the dam. Lake Ogallala boasts some excellent fishing for rainbow trout and yellow perch. The lake is 1-1/2 miles long and a quarter mile wide. It has about five miles of shoreline and covers about 320 acres.

Service

Kim & Maria Eichner 1210 Ogallala Beach Road – Ogallala, NE 69153 308-284-4852 / 800-286-4852 Fax: 308-284-2610 www.eichners.net email: maria@eichners.net

Outdoor Power Equipment ATVs – Motorcycles

Yamaha & Kawasaki Sales & Service www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Fish Fishing has long been the primary lure to Lake McConaughy with its cool, clear, deep waters. Game fish vary from sporty rainbow trout to the everyday catfish. Prized most highly by the local angler is the walleye, and Nebraska’s current state record (16 lbs 2 oz) came from Big Mac.

Golf Keith County is home to two first-class golf courses—Bayside Golf Course located at Lake McConaughy and West Winds Golf Club located in Ogallala.

Hunt Come fall, when campers, anglers, water skiers, and other warmweather enthusiasts pretty much abandon the lake, Big Mac becomes water fowl hunting territory. Clear Creek Waterfowl Management Area at the end of the lake attracts substantial numbers of Canadian geese, which can be hunted on the controlled shooting area, as well as much of the rest of the lake. Winter is an invitation to ice boaters, eagle viewers, skaters and backpackers, adding to the lake’s year-round appeal.

Bayside is a traditional, linkstyle course with rolling hills and native grasses. The 18-hole course overlooks Lake McConaughy, and features an amazing 10,025-square-foot, log-cabin-style clubhouse.

www.westwindgolf.com

308-284-4358 359 Country Road East 85 Ogallala, NE 69153 • 18-Hole Championship Course • Carts Available • Clubhouse • Lounge With Full Bar • Fully Stocked Pro Shop • Driving Range • Open 7 Days A Week In The Summer 26

• www.explorekeithcounty.com

West Winds is an 18-hole course with a mature, par-36 front nine and a back nine completed in 1997, making an excellent 72 par course. Birds The Lake McConaughy region is considered one of the richest ornithological attractions in the Great Plains. “It’s the best place in the state and the third best in the country to go birding,” according to University of Nebraska life science professor and author Dr. Paul Johnsgard. More than 320 species of birds have been identified in the area, as well as more than 100 breeding species. Bald eagle congregate below Kingsley Dam in the winter, with as many as 368 eagles sited in the area in one day.


History In addition to the many outdoor recreation opportunities, Keith County is home to dozens of unique historic attractions worthy of exploring. Take a step back in time by visiting Ash Hollow State Historical Park, Boot Hill, California Hill, Front Street, Petrified Wood Gallery, Walk of Fame, Mansion on the Hill and many more. Ogallala also offers nine parks covering 50 acres with 10 ball fields (seven lighted), walking trail, four tennis courts and five parks with playground equipment. Other recreational activities in Keith County include Cornhusker Lanes Bowling Alley, Goodall Recreation Center and Indoor Pool, two outdoor pools, historic Prairie Theater and Goodall Public Library.

1060 Lakeview West Rd. Brule, NE. 69127

Open Daily 10am-4pm

Our guided trail rides over the rolling hills of our 250 acre ranch offer spectacular views of Lake McConaughy.

308-289-4931 Advance Confirmed Reservations Required

www.explorekeithcounty.com •

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Worship • KEEPING THE FAITH eith County and the surrounding areas are blessed with a large variety of churches. There are small, intimate congregations and large congregations with many varieties of ministries going on all the time. Dynamic youth ministries and fun children’s programs are available to the whole community, no matter which church you attend. The local churches sponsor a food pantry, clothing ministry and a ministry to those who are down on their luck while traveling. Whether you are looking for traditional services with choirs, contemporary services with guitars and drums, services on Saturdays and Sundays, large modern facilities, or the traditional white church with a steeple, the Keith County area communities of faith can meet your needs.

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• www.explorekeithcounty.com


Index • OF ADVERTISERS Adams Bank & Trust ...................................................... Back Cover

Kenfield Electric ........................................................................... 7

Automotive Service Solutions, LLC ............................................... 2

Lazy J Liquor .............................................................................. 20

Beaver Bearing Company ............................................................. 6

McChesney Martin Sagehorn PC ................................................... 7

Bush Electric & Handyman............................................................ 2

McQuillan Law Office, P.C., L.L.O. ............................................... 16

The Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District .......... 11

Moul’s Modern Builders, LLC......................................................... 3

City of Ogallala .................................................. Inside Front Cover

New Hope .................................................................................. 28

City of Ogallala Department of Economic Development.............. 13

Ogallala Community Hospital..................................................... 19

The Clothing Closet ................................................................... 20

Ogallala Ready Mix .................................................................... 16

Cobb Realty, Inc. ........................................................................ 24

Ole’s Big Game Steakhouse & Lounge ......................................... 10

Correll Refrigeration Inc. .............................................................. 8

Open Range Grill.......................................................................... 3

Duke’s Autobody and Paint........................................................... 9

Pierce Law Office.......................................................................... 4

Eagle Canyon Horseback Adventures ......................................... 27

Pinnacle Bank............................................................................. 24

Eichners ..................................................................................... 25

Quality Inn / Denny’s / Platte River Sports Bar ............................ 23

Farmers Cooperative Association ................................................. 9

Schmidt Motors............................................................................ 1

Fuller & Associates Realty, LLC ................................................... 24

Sidney Roofing Co. .................................................................... 16

Grow Keith County....................................................................... 3

Steve’s Body & Paint Inc.............................................................. 16

Humphreys Auto Supply, Inc. ...................................................... 3

Super 8 Ogallala......................................................................... 22

Impact Images Studio................................................................. 20

Trail’s End................................................................................... 20

Java Jitters.................................................................................. 21

Valentino’s.................................................................................. 21

Keith County Area Development ................................................ 13

VillageProfile.com, inc.................................................................29

Keith County UNL Extension....................................................... 17

West Wind Golf Club................................................................... 26

Keith County Visitors Committee ................................................. 5

Western Insurors / Platte Valley Agency........................................ 3

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Right County  Right Town K  Right Bank K

315 N. Spruce Street • Ogallala, NE 69153 308.284.4071 202 State Street • Brule, NE 69127 308.287.2344

www.abtbank.com 800.422.3488

Profile for Townsquare Publications, LLC

Keith County NE Community Profile  

On behalf of the Ogallala/Keith County Chamber of Commerce, we appreciate your interest in our area! People of all ages and backgrounds are...

Keith County NE Community Profile  

On behalf of the Ogallala/Keith County Chamber of Commerce, we appreciate your interest in our area! People of all ages and backgrounds are...