The entire DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge, including the visitor center, has closed again because of Missouri River floodwaters impacting refuge roadways.

The refuge will remain closed for safety reasons until conditions improve, according to a note on the refuge website. All previously scheduled programs and events at the refuge have been canceled or postponed until further notice. 

Portions of the refuge had reopened in mid-May after being closed because of flooding. Boyer Chute National Wildlife Refuge just east of Fort Calhoun is also closed to the public until further notice.  

Bar's golf tourney, block party to aid flood victims

The Interlude Lounge will host a golf tournament and an outdoor block party to benefit flood victims through the Valley Days Flood Relief Foundation.

The tournament begins at noon Saturday at Elmwood Golf Course and includes free food from local restaurants, a chance to win a truck and pin prizes. After the tournament, golfers will go to the Interlude Lounge, 7643 Pacific St., where the after-party begins at 6 p.m. featuring live music and food trucks.

The block party is a 21-and-over event.

The Valley Days Flood Relief Foundation will receive 100% of the proceeds from the golf tournament, and the Interlude Lounge will donate 20% of sales from the after-party.

“The floods hurt so many people across the area, including my own family,” said Scott Piotrowski, owner of the Interlude Lounge. “Raising some money is the least we can do. There are families that still need direct assistance, and it’s important to us to stick by our neighbors and help out.”

Twin Rivers YMCA workers receive relief

Two employees of the Twin Rivers YMCA in Valley who have aided flood victims are now receiving their own help.

Donations from YMCA organizations in seven states have provided funds to Michayla Stawniak and Jesse Kracht, part-time employees of the Twin Rivers YMCA who were affected by the flooding.

Stawniak’s home was not able to be salvaged from the floods after a basement wall collapsed. Several family members were forced to relocate.

Kracht, who is currently on a mission trip to Alaska, lost all of his personal property in the flood, including several musical instruments and clothing.

UNL students document recovery efforts

Students from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, in partnership with Nebraska Extension, have begun recording stories of young people who are helping others recover from flooding.

The collaboration between the College of Journalism and Mass Communications and Extension will result in student-produced news coverage of the service work by youths.

In May, students from the combined Meridian-Tobias Future Farmers of America chapter removed debris, cleared land and repaired fence posts and barbed wire near the Loup River in Columbus, while journalism students documented their work.

Dozens of University of Nebraska students will spend their summer taking part in flood recovery service work statewide. For more information or to submit story ideas, go to www.stormcloudsovertheprairie.org.

Benefit concert raises $4,100 for flood relief

A recent benefit concert for flood relief near Linoma Beach featuring The Linoma Mashers raised $4,100.

One of the concert organizers, Julie Miller, recently presented the proceeds to the Ashland Ministerial Alliance.

Other bands performing at the event, held at the Cellar 426 winery in Ashland, were the Prairie Gators and Charlie Burton & Or What.

— Nancy Gaarder, Paul Hammel and Reece Ristau

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