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Jonathan Carder

Projects from YouTube UNO Journalism Site & Web Stories

Mid-America Motorplex flooding
by Jon Carder Pacific

Pacific Junction, Iowa- Omaha has been experiencing a once in a lifetime occurrence, the five hundred year flood.  Mid-America Motorplex, just off I-29 in Iowa, has been hit with the brunt of it, canceling races for the rest of the season and maybe even longer.  “I’m hoping we can begin by early spring or even the end of October, we’ll be cleaning up things and getting ready,” said Mid-America Motorplex General Manager Jim Howe.  Howe said it’s too early to know for sure when the motorplex will open but “our plans are to get in there, evaluate everything, clean everything up, patch repair, and get it up and going and ready for 2012.”

Mid-America Motorplex has been having fundraisers to try to raise money to help them clean up and repair the track so it can open.  The next fundraiser is a nostalgia show at Quaker Steak & Lube, 3220 Mid America Drive in Council Bluffs, on October 2.  Howe also said there’s ways to help for the people who can’t make it to the fundraisers.

“They can write me a letter, send me a donation, they can get involved in the clean up process, we don’t have any problem with any of that, just go to, click on the contact page, I’m right there.”

Web Story

Nuke-Con, by Jon Carder

Council Bluffs, Iowa-  Nuke-Con is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting the positive social, educational, and entertainment aspects in all types of gaming hobbies through their game days and annual convention.  Nuke-Con was formed in 1990 in Omaha because “there’s a pretty active group of people in Omaha and the surrounding area that play role-playing games and they got together and thought it would be fun to do a day with more than just themselves where they hosted a convention with a lot of different games,” said Nuke-Con Chairman NoraJane McIntyre. 

The past 21 years, Nuke-Con has been hosting a convention, which is now three days, in the greater Omaha area.  Six out of the past seven years, the convention’s been hosted by the Mid-America Center in Council Bluffs.  The only exception was 2007, when it was at Creighton University.

Occupy Omaha, by Jon Carder

Omaha, Nebraska-  Around the country, people have been protesting the bad economy with demonstrations called Occupy Wall Street.  In Omaha, however, it’s called Occupy Omaha and a lot of people in the area have joined the band wagon.  “I saw what they were doing in Wall Street and I understand why people are upset, I’m a college student and I’m worried that I’ll go in debt,” said Janine Brignola.

 A big reason for this movement is that the people don’t think they have a voice and they want to change that.  “The media doesn’t listen, the politicians don’t listen and we’re going to make them listen,” said Occupy Omaha organizer Donald Kuhns.

Their next demonstration is Saturday, October 15, where they’re marching from City Hall to the Federal Reserve.  For anybody who wants to join the movement become a fan of Occupy Omaha on Facebook.

Millard Bond Issue, by Jon Carder

Millard, Nebraska-  For the first time in six years, Millard is going to vote for a school district bond.  This one will be worth $140.8 million opposed to the $78 million in 2005 mostly because the district has grown by 2,842 students in that same span.   There are currently 25 elementary schools, 6 middle schools, 3 high schools and 1 alternative school in the Millard school district.

            The $140.8 million bond is spread out to $23.8 million for security, $21.5 million for technology, $14.7 million for energy-saving projects, $57.4 million for renovations and $23.4 million for building additions.  Some Millard citizens say that is too much in a poor economy.

            “In this economy, with people losing their homes, they can’t afford it,” said Paul Meyer, who’s against the Millard bond.

            According to Millard Public Schools Board President Dave Anderson, “We didn’t do it three years ago because of the economy but the problem is when is the appropriate time, when will the economy rebound?  I don’t have the answer to that but what I do know is now is the time to bring this bond out for a vote.”

            The voting process starts October 26, when the election commissioner mails out the ballots and they have to be turned in by November 15.  If passed, it’ll be the largest bond in school district history, easily surpassing the previous highest, which was $89 million in 1997. 

Recovery International, by Jon Carder

Omaha, Nebraska-  Depression affects 121 million people worldwide, resulting in 850,000 suicides per year.  In Omaha, there’s an organization that tries to prevent depression before it results in something much worse.  Recovery International is a simple set of living skills which enable people to live more peaceful and productive lives.

Every week, Recovery International has meetings on Mondays at 1:00 pm at First United Methodist Church at 69th & Cass and Tuesdays at 7:30 pm at St. Mathews Church at 60th & Walnut .  They also have meetings in Lincoln, Grand Island, Norfolk, Ames, , Des Moines and West Des Moines.  

 At the meetings, the participants describe an event from everyday life that caused distress.  They explain how they used the program’s self-help techniques to address their discomfort and control over negative responses.

Attendees then offer positive and constructive encouragement which highlight the example-giver’s successful use of the self-help techniques and suggest other techniques that could have been used.  Meetings are confidential and the information shared is kept within the group.

According to Margie O’Hanlon, “I wish more people could have access to this and put the time and commitment into it that it needs.”

Creighton Soccer, by Jon Carder

Omaha, Nebraska-  Creighton soccer has been as the number two overall seed in the NCAA tournament.  The Bluejays won the MVC tournament with a 1-0 win over Missouri State at Morrison Stadium.  With the number two overall seed, Creighton has homefield advantage throughout the tournament until the semifinals, which are in Hoover, Alabama.

The Bluejays’ first game is Sunday against either Northern Illinois or Western Illinois, who play Thursday in Dekalb, Illinois.  If they win that game, they advance to the third round against either Providence, Dartmouth or UC Santa Barbara on Sunday, November 27.  The number one seed in the tournament is North Carolina, the former home of head coach Elmar Bolowich.  Bolowich advanced to the semifinals each of the past three seasons with the Tar Heels and won a national title in 2001.

The big reason that Creighton is 18-2 and in good position for their first national title, is their defense.  The Bluejays have outscored opponents 34-4 this season.  They also lead the nation with a 0.20 goals against average and 16 shutouts.