Ag. Appreciation and Giving Hearts join to support Nighthawks

Ag.Appreciation night and Giving Hearts Day joined together, with the help of several local businesses, to support the girls Nighthawks basketball games on Thursday.


People were enticed to support their local basketball teams through free admission paid for by RZ motors, Uecker Yards, West Plains Implement, KNDC Radio, and South West Ag.To raise funds, FFA hosted a silent auction.

The silent auction included items sponsored by different Hettinger businesses.Some of the items listed in the action were gift cards to Backyard Mechanics, Kennedy’s Fresh Foods, and C&N café, a Sonic toothbrush from Nelson Dentistry, a dog-care kit from West River Vet Clinic, and a blanket and thermos kit from Gate City Bank.

The funds raised from the Ag. Appreciation event and the silent auction went to the Automotive and Agricultural Education Departments.

When asked why Ag. Appreciation night was important for was important for Hettinger youth and the community, agricultural education instructor and FFA advisor Ronda Schauer replied, “It not only allows students to personally connect with local businesses in which they support, it also allows the community to see the connection between students and their programs.”

West River Health Services Foundation also joined the event at the basketball games, encouraging members of the audience to wear red to promote awareness for their upcoming Giving Hearts Day. On Feb. 14, the West River Health Services Foundation will be accepting matched donations to go toward attracting new doctors to the Hettinger area.

“We have seen a few physicians retiring or moving to be near family,” said fund development officer Ted Uecker, “Therefore, we need to build up our New Physician Recruitment Endowment Fund. Without top docs in our own backyard, our top-notch equipment rests.”

The West River Health Services Foundation passed out coupons from local businesses and held raffle drawings for those who donated to the endowment fund. People were able to win gift cards and prizes from many contributing local businesses.

The foundation also organized a half-time event where girls from the elementary school involved in basketball could play during the JV and Varsity halftimes.

“[The elementary girls basketball teams] embraced the idea, so we ordered red and white GHD t-shirts with Dan Boxrud at the Graphic Attic for all 24 girls,” said Uecker. “There were definitely quite a few parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters that we don’t normally see at ballgames. And maybe more importantly, the youth had a terrific time! To slap High 5’s with the Varsity and JV players, plus the prom-type bridge that the varsity players formed for the little girls to exit the gym, that was awesome!”

The foundation’s appearance at the basketball game was just one of many ways the hospital is promoting its New Physician Recruitment Endowment Fund. West River Heath Services Foundation is planning another Giving Hearts Night with the Nighthawks in Scranton on February 8.