Young People Articles
Published: Thursday, June 13th, 2013
When asked to spell the words “balalaika” or “Pembina,” many would grab a dictionary. Not Max Oesterling, who correctly spelled those exact words at the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Oesterling, a home-schooled eighth grader from Custer, started entering spelling contests when he was living in Kentucky.
“My mom thought it would be good to do,” he said. “It was a lot of fun. From then I started doing more.”
Published: Thursday, June 6th, 2013
Three Custer students will take the trip of a lifetime due to their hard work and dedication to music.
Juniors Kristina Clarke and Gessie Heggen and recent graduate Caitlyn Bagley will spend 16 days touring England, France, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Austria, Italy and Germany as Midwest Ambassadors of Music, part of Voyageurs International, an organization which takes music from parts of the United States abroad. The Midwest Ambassadors of Music is in its 28th year of touring while Voyageurs International is in its 43rd year.
Published: Thursday, May 30th, 2013
Over 60 female students in grades sixth and eighth attended this year’s Women in Science conference held at South Dakota School of Mines and Technology (SDSMT) in Rapid City. This conference is sponsored by Youth in Science Rapid City, Inc. The Agenda for the day stated, “Women in Science is a free, one-day career learning workshop designed to provide young women in grades 6-12 with engaging opportunities to learn about careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).”
Published: Thursday, May 23rd, 2013
As students in Custer County spend their final days at school, finishing up lessons and having parties, students at Spring Creek School will celebrate a huge accomplishment. Since the beginning of the year, students and teachers at Spring Creek have walked one mile every day to promote fitness and a healthy lifestyle. And on Wednesday, May 15, the group reached a milestone by walking their 100th mile.
The idea for the walk came from teacher Julie Zumpano and paraprofessional Mattie Ingram, who both love to walk and hike.
Published: Thursday, May 9th, 2013
The sounds of the Custer High School band and choir have always been wonderful, but after last week’s Region 8 Large Group Contest, the sounds are a bit sweeter.
At the contest in Rapid City, which is open to all high school choirs, bands and orchestras in the Region 8 area (from Edgemont up to Harding County), CHS ensembles brought pieces they had performed for the spring concert in March and performed for three judges. The band played “Shaker Variants” by Elliot del Borgo and “Festivo” by Vaclav Nelhybel while the choir sang “Come to the Music” by Joseph M. Martin, “Keep Your Lamps” arranged by Andre Thomas and “O Sifuni Mungu” arranged by Roger Emerson.
Published: Thursday, April 18th, 2013
The Lifeways Community Coalition will sponsor a community forum to present groundbreaking brain research that explains the question, "Why do they do that?"
Community members are invited to attend this event.
A forum, “Understanding the Adolescent Developing Brain: Helping to Ensure Success for Children and Adolescents," will be held Tuesday, April 30 at Crazy Horse Memorial from 6-7 p.m
New research on adolescent brain development demonstrates several newly discovered facts:
Published: Thursday, April 4th, 2013
After learning and watching a film about children with leukemia, sixth grade students Shayanna Woodward and Claira Sedlacek decided to take action and do something to help leukemia patients and families. The result was over $900 raised for Pennies for Patients.
“We knew it was a good idea to help people and it made us feel really good to help,” Sedlacek said.
“I think it’s important because a lot of kids are affected with leukemia,” Woodward said. “One kid here (Gavin Scragg) was diagnosed with leukemia. We wanted to do something to help him and kids like him.”
Published: Thursday, February 21st, 2013
For the last eight years, the Custer community has celebrated the life of many elders and linked many generations together through the Elder’s Wisdom, Children’s Song program. The four honorees share their lives, stories and precious moments with elementary students who then write a narrative and song, with assistance by a songwriter.
“We’re very excited for this year’s program,” said Hank Fridell, program coordinator. “This is one of the events that links the kids and parents in the community to our elders. It’s a great opportunity to celebrate who we are.”
The four honorees this year are Leonard Wood, Eloise Pepin, Bill Tretheway and Marge Baldwin. They have already met with four elementary classes and shared their lives through stories and photographs and gave advice to the students.
Published: Thursday, February 7th, 2013
Brandon Haug of Sioux Falls, a Custer High School class of 2002 graduate, along with Joshua Steinhauer of Spearfish and a CHS class of 2010 graduate, are participating in a statewide leadership program Partners in Policymaking.
"The committee who selects the participants for Partners in Policymaking did an awesome job in filling this class,” said coordinator of the leadership program, Sandy Stocklin Hook, of South Dakota Advocacy Services in Pierre. “Choosing the participants is always difficult as we receive so many excellent and qualified applications. For this year's class, we received around 41 applications and the committee felt that both Brandon and Josh's applications were exceptional. They will be a valuable asset to the class."
Published: Thursday, January 3rd, 2013
Custer Elementary sixth graders once again spent time this past week baking cookies for the Custer Community Christmas program food baskets.
This hands-on project was started by sixth grader teacher Kim Webster 20 years ago as a way to give back to the community. Concepts such as measuring, fractions, estimating and other mathematical facts were used in a “real life, practical” activity to teach math concepts to her students. Through the years it has grown into a more encompassing project that includes many partnerships in our community.
Published: Thursday, December 13th, 2012
The Western 4-H Family and Consumer Science Show was recently held in Rapid City. The show celebrated the 50th anniversary of the show which is a two day event with many contests. The youth, both 4-H and other youth including Cloverbuds, who are youth younger than 9 years old, may participate alongside adults. Attendees were from South Dakota, Montana, Nebraska and Wyoming and represented 26 counties.
Special programs were held this year, including the Golden Diamond Anniversary Gala Friday evening, which also celebrated the 75th year of the Western Junior Livestock Show held on the same weekend each year.
Published: Thursday, November 29th, 2012
Two Custer High School students were ranked as the top two interpreters among the region’s best on Tuesday, Nov. 20. They were adjudicated by professionals in fine arts, public speaking and communications.
Oral Interpretation consists of seven categories: non-original oratory, interpretation of serious plays, interpretation of serious prose, poetry reading, humorous reading, duet interpretation and readers theatre.
Published: Thursday, November 8th, 2012
The Custer Knowledge Bowl teams competed in their last regular season meet Oct. 27. Knowledge Bowl is a fast-paced, timed 360-question competition consisting of 18 teams, nine at each level. Total points from regular season meets determine spots in the region finals which include the top four teams from the Southern Hills, the top four teams from the Northern Hills and the higher fifth place team, giving the finals nine teams for the high school finals and nine teams for the middle school finals. The finals are Nov. 10 at Douglas.
Middle schools in the Southern Hills region are Custer, Rapid City Christian, Rapid City Southwest, Rapid City West, Rapid City South, Rapid City East and Rapid City North. High schools in the Southern Hills region are Custer, Hill City, Rapid City Christian, Rapid City Stevens and Rapid City Central.
Published: Thursday, October 25th, 2012
Anna Pickford, a senior at Custer High School, is one of four flutists and one of one piccolo players selected for the 2012 South Dakota All-State Orchestra. Pickford auditioned and was judged on etudes, excerpts from the all-state concert selections and a written music terminology test.
Published: Thursday, October 4th, 2012
On Oct. 10-13, the Golden Diamond Anniversary Show will recognize the 75th year for the Livestock Show (WJLS) and the 50th year for the Family and Consumer Science Show (FCSS) at the Central States Fairgrounds in Rapid City.
Many special events are planned to bring exhibitors, parents, show alumni, sponsors and the public together to renew friendships and make new friends.
Events for Oct. 10 include registration of livestock for the 200 exhibitors and non-livestock exhibits as well as WJLS scholarship interviews.
Published: Thursday, September 6th, 2012
Custer County has experienced a brain gain in the last 40 years, joining the rest of the country in what has been a massive increase in the number of adults who have earned college degrees.
In 1970, 9.5 percent of those over 25 years of age had college degrees in Custer County. By 2010, 28.6 percent of adults here had completed college.
The percentage of adults with college degrees in Custer County was greater than the national average of 27.9 percent in 2010. The college-educated rate here was greater than the South Dakota average of 25.3 percent.
Published: Thursday, July 19th, 2012
Custer and Fall River County 4-H youth exhibited their horsemanship skills by participating in the County 4-H Horse Show July 2 at the fairgrounds in Hermosa. The event was judged by Shelly Graff of Piedmont. This may have been a record year for attendance as well, with 35 youth participating, which is an increase from 26 in 2011.
The 4-Hers practiced many hours, training their horses for the different events and look forward to competing at the county level, many with hopes of advancing to the state horse show in Huron. All participants must complete a horse safety training program to gain skills, knowledge and expertise regarding the importance of safety around horses and while riding horses.
Published: Thursday, June 21st, 2012
Custer High School received national recognition for excellence in global education by EF Foundation for Foreign Study, the leader in high school exchange. The EF Foundation Global Education Excellence Award is presented to high schools that demonstrate an extraordinary commitment to international understanding and global awareness.
This year, CHS welcomed four EF Foundation exchange students. Not only were the students accepted into the school, they became an integral part of the school's academic and extracurricular life.
Published: Thursday, June 7th, 2012
On Tuesday, May 29, at 4:45 a.m. the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) Squadron, Crazy Horse Composite, was activated into search and rescue operations for one of its own cadets. Cadet 2nd Lt. Justin Lewis of Hill City had been kayaking on Deerfield Lake and failed to meet with his mother at a prearranged time. The family requested the assistance of Civil Air Patrol. The commander, Cpt. Sharon Moad, called searchers and air crew members. The team left Custer within hours to meet up with the Pennington County Sheriff and search and rescue personnel. The search team located a life vest that was later confirmed to be Lewis’.
Published: Thursday, May 31st, 2012
Two Custer Elementary teams participated in the Destination ImagiNation 2012 Global Finals on the University of Tennessee Campus in Knoxville May 21-26.
The Time Travelers did their Challenge B: The Solar Stage main challenge Thursday at 8:18 a.m. and their Instant Challenge Saturday at noon. Their challenge required using solar energy in a new and innovative way which they solved by using donuts to create a solar cell from a solar oven. Duck Tape Productions did their Challenge C: Coming Attractions Thursday at 12:30 p.m. and their Instant Challenge Saturday at 9 a.m. Their challenge required them to create a movie trailer for a movie they imagined and they did—competing against over 100 teams in their age group
Published: Thursday, May 17th, 2012
In honor of her 12th birthday, Kassidy Adam asked her friends for special gifts, like any girl would. Only Adam didn’t ask for the newest video games or movies; she asked for donations toward the Humane Society.
“I’ve always loved animals,” Adam said. “I felt like I didn’t really need a lot of gifts because I already have a lot. I decided I should give to something else.”
Adam has two dogs, Patriot and Nala, and has always had animals around since she was 2.
Published: Wednesday, May 9th, 2012
First grade teacher Jolene Bush has been with the Custer School District for 29 years and is considered by many to be a mainstay in the community. Recently, Bush was named Teacher of the Year by the district. She was nominated by community members and then chosen by the selection committee comprised of community members and one board of education member.
“Jolene Bush is a very hard working, caring teacher,” said school superintendent Scott Lepke. “She is very deserving of this award.
Published: Thursday, May 3rd, 2012
Klacy McLaughlin, a senior at Custer High School, chose to make her senior project’s focus on American-made products and their importance to the U.S. economy. Under the mentorship of Sarah Albertson, she asked the community for donations of items to benefit The Storehouse here in the Custer community.
McLaughlin reports that American made products are important to her and her family. She accepted donations of sheets, comforters, pillows, blankets, towels, pots and pans. Her emphasis was on American-made products, but accepted all donations.
Published: Thursday, April 19th, 2012
Aiden and Brandon Suelflow were the guests of honor at the April 13 story time at Custer County Library. April has been proclaimed the Month of the Military Child in South Dakota by Gov. Daugaard.
On April 13, citizens of South Dakota were encouraged to wear purple to show support for military kids and to honor and thank them for their sacrifices. The local 4-H/Youth program advisor, Brad Keizer, teamed up with library director, Doris Ann Mertz, to provide a story time focused on honoring military kid
Published: Thursday, March 1st, 2012
Susan Bowen had not planned on being an art teacher but after eight years with the Custer schools, she cannot imagine doing anything else. For her dedication and passion, Bowen was chosen for the VFW’s Teacher of the Year Award.
The VFW chose Bowen for the award based on her long-time teaching status and her Americanism in the classroom. Bowen won the award at the local post level, but her nomination will carry on to the national level. The three winners will be announced in the beginning of March.