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RENNER—Chris Richards lays a still-hot horseshoe against a black gelding's hooves, his face focused through the freshly billowing steam and smoke. Cactus, the horse, seems mostly unbothered. His owner, Marianna Finn, pretends to cough from the smoke, which draws a response from Richards. "Oh, c'mon," he said, drawing laughter from his audience.
It was a night of dollar signs for the Mitchell Board of Education on Monday night. School board members approved a slew of salary increases for teachers, administrators and the superintendent of the Mitchell School District during their regular meeting at the Mitchell Career and Technical Education Academy. In addition to approving the much-anticipated teacher salary increases as recommended by the Blue Ribbon Task Force, board members also gave Superintendent Joe Graves and other district administrators a boost.
Naomi Powers has never played with a national orchestra before. This summer, that will change. Powers, a sophomore at Mitchell High School, is one of 78 students in the United States selected to participate in NYO2, a summer program for outstanding instrumentalists ages 14 to 17. The two-week program culminates in a performance in Philadelphia along with The Philadelphia Orchestra, one of the nation's most prestigious and renowned symphony orchestras. "They're said to be the second-best in the United States," Powers said. "So I'm pretty excited."
After more than a year of high-profile studies, speeches and politics, the Blue Ribbon Task Force's recommendations are being put into practice. The Mitchell Board of Education will consider a tentative agreement between the Mitchell Education Association and the Mitchell School District for the 2016-17 school year during their regular meeting at 5 p.m. today at the Mitchell Career and Technical Education Academy.
Growing up is highly overrated. I've recently been reminded of one of the reasons why: finding a place to live. As a child, I never had to worry about this. This formed me into an adult who enjoys having a bed in a climate-controlled environment. For those of us who don't live in opulence, finding affordable housing that doesn't resemble an active crime scene is something like hunting unicorns, minus the sense of whimsy. You parade through a series of other people's homes, ask the same questions 12 times per day, and then go home and cry.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the second in a two-part series on Charles and Kim Johnson, of Niobrara, Nebraska, and their lives after being convicted of felony arson and reckless burning in 2013. SPRINGFIELD—Charles and Kimberly Johnson are still searching for answers. Why did their business burn down? And why were they convicted of being the ones who set the fire?
MONTEZUMA, New Mexico—If you can't visit the world, then bring the world to you. For James Mayclin, who attends the United World College of the United States of America, that's one of the perks of attending an international boarding school. "Our mission statement is to make education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future," Mayclin said. "It's very much focused on basically bringing kids from different backgrounds together."
It’s a good year to be a Willie Nelson fan. The popular country/Americana artist is one of the many faces emblazoned across the Corn Palace in mural form, and those murals will stay one year longer than originally planned. Mitchell Mayor Jerry Toomey said Thursday the city will keep the murals for another year, but will replace the grasses.
Sometimes, I miss my friend Brian. Actually, it's not sometimes. It's often. It's been nearly three years since Brian Anderberg died from cancer at age 41. As is often the case with loved ones we've lost, I think about Brian often. Especially lately, it seems he has dominated my "On This Day" feed on Facebook, which shows you posts from one or two or seven years past.
It can be hard for high school students to set themselves apart, but three Mitchell High School seniors seem to be well on their way. Kelsie Mastel, Shelby Riggs and Ryan Solberg, all of MHS, have been named semifinalists in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. Of the 11 semifinalists for South Dakota, four are in The Daily Republic's print circulation area: Mastel, Riggs and Solberg; and James J. Mayclin, of Plankinton. Mayclin now attends the Armand Hammer UWC of the American West in Montezuma, N.M.