When a need arises
By Monty Hopkins
There’s an often used saying, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going” and that’s likely for the most part true, but another phrase could have been coined at Banner Country School, on Saturday, February 2. “When a need arises, the people rise to the need”! And how true it was.
There is a family in Banner County that was hit with a pretty serious illness awhile back, and like all too many small farm families, this illness hit with no health insurance. Health insurance is expensive as all of us who pay our own are well aware. Of course, not having it is even more expensive, as this case turned out to be.
But if you only have so much farm income, and only so much time to be employed off the farm, and you can either buy health insurance, or fill the diesel tank to farm, or pay the electric bill, or buy groceries…well, those are hard choices. I know, been there, done that, and wore at the t-shirt.
But there was need. There was also a need for some help, so two Banner County farm wives, Sandy Huffman and Katharine Nelson put their heads together.
Now when you have a very rural county like Banner County, with no towns other than the county seat, Harrisburg, and other than the bank, Harrisburg really has no retail business. Total population of Banner Country is less then 1,000, smaller than many Nebraska small towns.
Banner County is a countywide unified school district, with only one school, and here is really the hub of the county.
So a deal was made with the school to have a fundraiser for this lady the night of the Banner County-Sioux County boys and girls basketball game. The fund raiser staged a soup supper and the school allowed the fund raiser to operate the concession stand as well.
Then a cake raffle was planned, and the ball started rolling. Soon an area realtor heard about the deal, and donated a 13″ color TV to be raffled. Ingredients for the soup supper were donated. One lady baked 300 , yes 300, very, very gooey delicious cinnamon rolls. A total of 22 cakes were baked and decorated. Some were near works of art.
School Supt. Roy Ingrams said the gate for the ball game was about double a normal night. People started arriving at 4 o’clock when the junior varsity girls started, and all evening long, the crowd just kept growing. There was no place left to sit. When people went to eat, someone else sat in there seat. Others would just park on the stairs. Tailor made to give a Fire Marshell a coronary.
All the raffle tickets were drawn during half time of the boy’s varsity game.
By the end of the evening, the raffle had collected $608.10. And the soup and concessions stands netted $995.24. There were many who paid for the $3 bowl of soup and cinnamon roll with a $5, $10, or $20, and then said to keep the change.
But the truth of the evening as one little boy, maybe 5 or 6, who walked up to the cake raffle table and give the lady 35-cents. She explained to him that the tickets were 25-cents each and that he could keep the dime. “Oh, I didn’t want to buy a ticket,” he said, I just want to give this to them.”
“When a need arises, the people rise to the need!”