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Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Eliminating chaos is key to non-violent life
Published: Thursday, January 29th, 2015

It was a peaceful Saturday afternoon in the Pine Room at the Custer County Annex, where nearly 25 participants gathered to discuss non-violent living at the Non-violent Conflict Resolution workshop hosted by Zonta of the Southern Black Hills. The workshop was part of Zonta International’s campaign “Non-violence from the Inside Out,” meaning individuals need to start working inwards before they can work out. 

“We live in a violent world these days,” said Peg Ryan, coordinator and speaker of the event. “We can’t change the violence in the world until we change ourselves.”

This workshop was the first step in that direction. 



Garage just outside Custer lost to fire
Published: Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Crews with the Custer Volunteer Fire Department had a busy night after responding to a garage fire Wednesday, Jan. 21.

Fire crews were paged at 4:20 p.m. by the homeowner, who called the fire department after trying to contain the blaze himself. When emergency responders arrived, the double garage was fully engulfed and at a total loss. 

In addition to the loss of the building, there was a Jeep inside the garage, which was also lost to the fire. However, the homeowner was able to move one of his cars from the garage before it was fully engulfed. The fire was located on Cross Road, just off of Sidney Park Road.



Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Simianer is new city planning administrator
Published: Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Third time’s the charm for the City of Custer as the council approved the hire of a new planning administrator during its Tuesday, Jan. 20 meeting. 

Scott Simianer was recommended by the interview committee to hire as planning administrator and will begin work with the City of Custer Monday, Feb. 2. Simianer, who lives in Custer County, currently works for the City of Hot Springs. 

“He is well versed in that position that we were looking to fulfill and he has a lot of certifications that we have been desiring,” said city alderman Corbin Herman. “I am pretty confident in this hiring.”



Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

Experts talk long-term effects of uranium
Published: Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

The Custer County Courthouse Annex was packed Thursday night as community members listened to three specialists discuss the potential impacts of the proposed Dewey-Burdock uranium mining operation in Custer and Fall River counties. 

Speaking at the information night, presented by Dakota Rural Action (DRA), was Dr. Lilias Jarding, a long time researcher who has worked on uranium and natural resource issues for years, Ed Harvey, a former nuclear researcher who has spent 35 years in the nuclear industry, and Bruce Ellison, an attorney who works with Clean Water Alliance. The three talked about uranium mining in general, in-situ leaching (ISL) and impacts for the future the operation could have. 



Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

County may raise fees
Published: Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

The Custer County Commission is considering changing and/or raising some of the fees the general public pays for county services, and will continue to study the county’s fee structure and make a decision at an upcoming meeting. At its Jan. 14 meeting, the commission listened to feedback from its department heads regarding where fees are at and which fees, if any, needed changed.

Most of the discussion centered around the fees the planning department charges. Interim planning director/staff engineer Elmer Claycomb presented the commission with a list of the department’s fees, but said only three areas needed to be addressed: collection of violation and reinspection fees, the flood plain development fee and the building permit fee.



Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

Up in flames
Published: Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

As menacing as it looked perched on Pageant Hill, it never stood a chance.

For the second consecutive year, the burning of a large, 28-foot beetle was the highlight of the Bark Beetle Blues events last Saturday afternoon in Custer.

The events started at Custer Jr./Sr. High School, where attendees were entertained by music from French Creek Folk, the dancers from Lo-Ru West, elementary school singers and the Black Hills Ukulele Orchestra. That was followed by a pair of videos and a welcome and talk by Cheryl Schreier, superintendent of Mount Rushmore National Memorial, and Craig Bobzien, supervisor for Black Hills National Forest, who told the crowd it was “time for the forest renewal.”



Thursday, January 15th, 2015

Pinkerton resigns from school board
Published: Thursday, January 15th, 2015

During its Monday night meeting, the Custer School District Board of Education accepted the resignation of board member Les Pinkerton, effective March 1. 

In his resignation, Pinkerton said he would be changing his state residency within the next couple of months, which would no longer allow him to participate as a Custer County school board member. 

“I am very thankful for the opportunity to work with the board members, the community and the students and staff within the Custer County schools,” Pinkerton said.



Thursday, January 15th, 2015

Lawmakers preview upcoming session
Published: Thursday, January 15th, 2015

The South Dakota State Legislature began its 2015 session, and District 30 lawmakers say there is no lack of topics that will be discussed, debated and voted upon before the end of the session. Juvenile justice, gambling, education funding and possible taxes for transportation are among the hottest topics lawmakers will have to deal with as they wind their way through this year’s session.

There has been whispers all year that the legislature may agree—and that includes Republicans—to raise taxes this session, specifically to raise money for infrastructure repairs throughout the state. A bill put forward would raise more than $100 million annually in new revenue through a variety of fuel tax increases, vehicle fees and other assessments.



Thursday, January 15th, 2015

Custer to set fire to beetle Saturday
Published: Thursday, January 15th, 2015

Come Saturday, Pageant Hill will be filled with flames, fireworks and fun, proving for the second time that those Mountain Pine Beetles don’t stand a chance. 

The second annual Burning of the Beetle will be held Saturday, Jan. 17, and is sponsored by the Bark Beetle Blues committee. Much like last year’s ceremony, this year’s Burning Beetle will feature a gathering at the high school, a parade and the popular bug crawl. Last year, nearly 1,000 participated in the event and organizers hope to see even more this year. 



Thursday, January 8th, 2015

The year 2014 in review
Published: Thursday, January 8th, 2015

July

Walter Eagle Tail, 47, of Custer, died after choking while competing in the Custer Independence Day hot dog eating contest July 3. The competition was part of the annual Old Time County Fair in Custer.

Black Hills Burger & Bun Co. of Custer was named as having the best burger joint in the entire country by TripAdvisor user reviews.

Parts of the new movie “Lakota Girls” was being filmed in Custer. The movie was written by Molly Cameron, the daughter-in-law of Custer’s Ilona McDill.



Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Sheriff’s Log top twenty
Published: Thursday, January 8th, 2015

The following is a list of the top 20 items in the Custer County  Chronicle’s Sheriff’s Log for 2014, as selected by the staff of the Chronicle. This year, the log was written by deputies Seth Thompson, Matt Haugen and Heath Lowry. This week are numbers 10 through one.

 

No. 10

“That’s why I walk to Pageant Hill.”

Friday, July 4

10:00 p.m. Custer hosted the world’s largest traffic jam after the annual fireworks display.



Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Talley is Citizen of the Year
Published: Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Depending on whom you ask, Donna Talley can be a number of things. 

To the women, children (and sometimes even men) she helps rescue from the clutches of an abuser, she is a hero, a gift and a treasure. To the abusers, whom she faces in domestic situations and in the courtroom, she’s the most hated woman in the Southern Black Hills. But to her co-workers and family, she’s dedicated, driven and compassionate. 



Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

Sheriff’s Log top twenty
Published: Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

The following is a list of the top 20 items in the Custer County  Chronicle’s Sheriff’s Log for 2014, as selected by the staff of the Chronicle. This year, the log was written by deputies Seth Thompson, Matt Haugen and Heath Lowry. This week, number 20 through 11 will be revealed, with the top 10 in next week.

No. 20

“It changes its own oil.”

Tuesday, April 22



Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

Man sought in armed robbery
Published: Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

The Custer County Sheriff’s Department seeks information related to an armed robbery that took place in Custer Dec. 18.

At around 3 a.m. that day, a man entered the Corner Pantry from the convenience store side and went into the casino side, where he pulled a gun and ordered the employee into the bathroom. Once the employee was in the bathroom, the man took an unknown amount of cash out of the register. The employee was the only person in the building at the time.



Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

They said it: The most quotable quotes of 2014
Published: Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

As always, the citizens of Custer County had plenty to say in 2014. Below is a sampling of some of the more “quotable” quotes that were uttered during the first half of the year.

“I’m not trying to get rich. I’m trying to save lives.” - Mike Olheiser to the Custer City Council. Olheiser was seeking to start a taxi cab-type service in Custer, in part to pick up people who need a ride home from the bar after having one too many.

“Pringle. We have warmer winters.” - Custer County Sheriff Rick Wheeler, answering the “Question of the Week” for the Custer County Chronicle. The question was, if you could travel anywhere, where would go?



Wednesday, December 24th, 2014

Hermosa liquor license fees debated
Published: Wednesday, December 24th, 2014

The board for the Town of Hermosa will continue to charge $350 per month for its annual operating agreement for liquor licenses, despite some of those operating agreement owners belief that the cost is too high.

The board voted to keep the cost as is at its Dec. 16 meeting, saying the fee was middle of the road when compared to other communities in the area. Some area communities are even modeling their operating agreements and fees after Hermosa’s, town board member Dan Holsworth said.



Wednesday, December 24th, 2014

Lack of land deal questioned
Published: Wednesday, December 24th, 2014

Some Hermosa area residents, as well as the Town of Hermosa board, are up in arms over what they say is a waste of taxpayer money by the Custer County Commission over the commission’s declining of a land swap for the county’s new highway shop on the eastern part of the county. The county, however, says the proposed deal wasn’t legal.

Gary Hunsaker, a long-time Hermosa area resident, along with business partner Greg Lester, another long-time area resident, proposed giving the county around 25 acres south of and adjacent to the Custer County Fairgrounds in Hermosa to build the shop on and possibly expand the fairgrounds. In return, Hunsaker said, the two asked that the county lower taxes on other properties they own in the county until the debt was serviced in full.



Wednesday, December 24th, 2014

The hot scoop from Frosty
Published: Wednesday, December 24th, 2014

Down through the village, with a broomstick in his hand, Frosty the Snowman swung by the office of the Custer County Chronicle recently after agreeing to be the interview subject for this year’s Christmas edition of the paper.

Frosty stayed at the office for an hour, discussing how a snowman can be alive, what magic was actually in that old silk hat, and leaving unsightly puddles around the office, which we hoped and prayed was just from him melting a little.

Jason Ferguson (JF): Welcome to Custer, Frosty. Have you ever been here before?



Thursday, December 18th, 2014

In-town camping ordinance proving tricky for city
Published: Thursday, December 18th, 2014

The first reading of a revised version of the City of Custer’s ordinance dealing with the occupancy of camping trailer, tent, travel trailer and motor home outside of commercial campgrounds has been sent to the drawing board after questions regarding it were raised at Monday evening’s meeting of the Custer City Council.

The council has been wrestling with revising the ordinance for several months, feeling the ordinance in its current form is too hard to enforce and too “open to interpretation.” 



Thursday, December 18th, 2014

County researching water needs
Published: Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Before Custer County sinks money down a hole to bring water to its soon-to-be-constructed shop on the eastern side of the county, it needs to figure out how high of quality—and how much—water it needs out of any well it drills.

At the Dec. 10 meeting of the Custer County Commission, that topic was broached again after representatives from both the Town of Hermosa and Southern Black Hills Water System, Inc., expressed interest in purchasing water from the county.



Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Arrests made in burglaries
Published: Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Several arrests and a warrant have been issued after an investigation by the Custer County Sheriff’s Department in two investigations, including the break-in and burglary of Claw, Antler & Hide and a Custer cabin. 

In the Claw, Antler & Hide break-in and burglary, which occurred over Easter weekend in March, a warrant for Tyrell Legerski, 22, has been issued. Legerski also has other multiple charges and warrants against him in connection for burglaries in Gillette, Wyo., Spearfish and Lawrence County and is suspected in the Custer break-in/burglary, as well as the break-in and burglary of a museum in Hot Springs. 



Thursday, December 11th, 2014

Planning makeup heads to council
Published: Thursday, December 11th, 2014

The constitution of the City of Custer’s planning commission will include five full-time members, one temporary member and two alternates, if a recommendation approved for the makeup of the commission by the city’s current commission is approved by the Custer City Council at its meeting Monday. The makeup recommendation passed unanimously at a planning commission meeting Tuesday evening.

The temporary member of the commission will be a representative of the city’s three-mile jurisdictional area outside of city limits. State law says municipalities can—but do not have to—have control over land three miles outside the city limits for planning purposes. Towns can opt to have control over less than three miles, as well. Under the new set-up, that three-mile representative—which is currently Andy Kelford—will vote only on issues that affect that area.



Thursday, December 11th, 2014

Deck the halls with useful tips
Published: Thursday, December 11th, 2014

Just like the famous carol, it’s time to deck the halls.

While decorating for Christmas can elicit reactions anywhere from joy and excitement to frustration and confusion, it can also be stressful. That’s why the Chronicle has talked to some pros when it comes to decorating to make your holiday simple, easy and worry-free.  

“Where we live, there is an abundance of cheap materials,” said Jenny Behlings of Jenny’s Floral in Custer, who has decorated homes at Hart Ranch and in Rapid City, as well as the state capitol through the South Dakota Floral Association. “Pine cones are outside and make for great ornaments or decorations. Permits for trees from the Forest Service are pretty cheap. Then, if you trim your tree, you can use the branches for swags or wreaths. Add some ribbon and tinsel and you have a nice, rustic tree.” 



Thursday, December 11th, 2014

Dr. Joy takes on new role
Published: Thursday, December 11th, 2014

Dr. Joy Falkenburg of Custer has added another achievement to her list of accomplishments: Crime-fighter.

On Saturday, Nov. 22, she and a good friend, Michelle Lehman, along with Joy’s children decided to stop at the westside Safeway in Rapid City after attending a YMCA basketball game in Rapid City (which Custer won, she  notes).

They had just entered the store on the south side by the deli and Joy was in the process of grabbing a cart when she heard a woman about 10 feet away screaming, “He stole my purse! He stole my purse!”



Thursday, December 4th, 2014

Custer Cruisin’ committee nixes beer garden
Published: Thursday, December 4th, 2014

There will be no beer garden at the 2015 Custer Cruisin’ Rally after business owners and community members voiced their opposition to the idea during the Custer Cruisin’ Committee’s meeting on Friday, Nov. 21. 

“The beer garden is a bad idea. It’s bad for the other businesses who sell beer, for one,” said Matt Furse, pastor at Mountainview Baptist Church, which has had a tent at the rally since 2002. “We should (look at bringing in) unique vendors that are already not on the street. We don’t want to be like Sturgis; families come here to experience the bikes without experiencing what Sturgis has.”



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