This Episode 904  of  Nebraska Stories celebrates traditions found in Nebraska.  Well, one might not quite be a tradition yet.  But there is a group of students that would definitely want traditions like this to continue.  Below are the italicized show notes from NET, the host of this wonderful show.  As usual, I cannot resist adding my own thoughts.  Please note that these are my opinions and are not a reflection of the show.

“New Ears for Ancient Music” A recent chart-topping musical recording came from a group you wouldn’t expect in a place you wouldn’t expect. In a seminary near Denton, Gregorian chanting is a part of everyday life.  Several priests who graduated from the seminary recently came together as The Fraternity to release a recording of these chants called Requiem.  Requiem topped the classical music charts for 13 weeks following its release in the spring of 2017.  Learn more about these unique artists.  And learn about the religious community that has been using Gregorian chants as part of its daily worship for hundreds of years.  

Normally you need to watch segments, or you will be missing out.  But this segment is more about the sound.  I think the producer did an excellent job of capturing the essence of the story featuring some men who really do not want to be on camera.  Gregorian chants is a part of a long line of traditions.  I will long be pondering the thought the singing prayers well is a challenge.  While I may not fit the priest profile, I can definitely adapt their way of worshipping God with a whole-hearted focus.

“New Frontier, New Athlete” Until recently, athletic scholarships were reserved for athletes who compete on the field. Midland University in Fremont is among the first institutions to pioneer a new frontier of athletics with an eSports collegiate athletic program. Now gamers who play competitive team sports onscreen can compete at a varsity-level and even attend college on an e-Sports scholarship.  This is not what you would think of as a traditional sport.  But I am certain I know of my students who would welcome this challenge.  Including several of my own.  (I must admit that I am not certain that I want to tell my older sons about this possibility! 🙂 )  You do have to admire the purposefulness of these instructors in wanting to create new academic traditions.

“Unadilla Bill” As the state capital for Groundhog Day in Nebraska, Unadilla is famous for its annual celebration. On the first Saturday of each February, the town’s population doubles.  A stuffed rodent named after a former lieutenant governor is the center of attention. With a parade, led by Unadilla Bill himself, members of the community gather to see if the town’s celebrated resident groundhog sees his shadow, predicting six more weeks of winter…. or whether spring is just around the corner.  If our family was not going to be out of town, I think I would be traveling down to this town to check out one of the quirkiest weather traditions.  This is a fun story.  My prediction is that this groundhog never sees his shadow.

“Betty’s One Room School ” (archive 203)    Just what makes a woman impulsively decide to buy a one room school?  For Betty Stukenholtz (Nebraska City) it was an overwhelming desire to preserve memories.  This little country school that educated her and many other Otoe county children for over 100 years.   My mom attended a one room schoolhouse through 8th grade.  I think this type of education can be wonderful.  (Actually that is what homeschooling can feel like sometimes!) The fact that this woman is sharing educational traditions is wonderful.  I hope that this community keeps this going. Condolences to the friends and family of Betty Stukenholz as she passed away last winter.

“Crazy Horse Camp”  (Archive 403 / 711)  While autumn leaves fall at Ponca State Park, Lakota writer Joseph Marshall shows young natives how easy it looks and how hard it really is to hit a target with arrows shot from a traditional handmade bow.  Our family just finished reading Indian Boyhood and really enjoyed it.  Native American traditions should be some of the most important traditions to keep alive.  Their way of life involved the land.  While I may not embrace all aspects of their culture, I definitely think that we can learn from them.

Continuing Traditions

Which one of these Nebraska traditions would you want to continue?  How do you celebrate life in a deliberate way?



Author: neodyssey

My name is Gretchen Garrison. I started this blog about Nebraska in 2013. So far, I have written three books about Nebraska and Lincoln.