Library celebrates 125th anniversary today

The Bartholomew County Public Library will be celebrating its 125th anniversary today with an event this afternoon.

The library celebration will include cutting a cake at the large arch, sewing arts activities with Sarah Marsom, music by local band Cottonpatch, food trucks, and a beer garden. There will also be tours showing off recent library renovations and a celebration of the bookmobile’s 65th anniversary..

Events start at 5 p.m. with the tours running through 5:45 p.m. Music will start at 5:30 p.m. The library is on Fifth Street in downtown Columbus.

Photo courtesy of Columbus Area Visitors Center

Volunteers fan out to help local charity groups

Hundreds of volunteers will be out in the community today as the United Way of Bartholomew County holds a Day of Caring to aid local groups.

The annual Day of Caring is a full-day volunteer event that connects local businesses and community members with non-profit agencies and organizations. Nearly 500 volunteers are helping 21 organizations that make a positive difference in Bartholomew County.

Volunteer projects include tasks such as planting flowers, mulching, painting, organizing, and sorting donations. According to organizers, volunteers of all ages and skill levels are taking part.

You can find more information at UW Barth Co dot org.

Seymour to close Second Street for road project

The City of Seymour will be closing parts of Second Street, starting next week as part of a street rehabilitation project.

The work is expected to start Monday and last through Saturday, May 25th just east of Community Drive while crews relocate utilities. After that, the work will continue to move east down Second Street with the schedule depending on the weather and speed of progress.

The work is happening near Seymour High School and school officials are warning that parents and students should plan for extra time and to take an alternative route.

The city says that the work is part of a $15 million dollars reconstruction project.

Cummins raises long-term financial forecast

Cummins says it is in a strong position and is raising its long-term financial targets, anticipating revenues in 2030 of $43 to $48 billion dollars.

The Columbus based engine manufacturer made a presentation today ahead of Analyst Day on its financial outlook.

Company officials told investors and shareholders today that they believe the company well positioned to meet customer needs as well as drive greenhouse gas reductions. And that it would generate growth regardless of the transition to zero emissions.

The company expects the base business to generate $39 to $42 billion a year by 2030, which would be a 25 percent incremental growth in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. Its zero emissions brand Accelera is expected to generate $3 to $9 billion in revenue by 2030 and to begin breaking even by 2027.

The company outlined continuous expansion as a result of emissions regulations, as well as aftermarket growth and growth in the adoption of zero emissions technology.

Jennifer Rumsey, Chair and Chief Executive Officer, said that since the last Analyst Day, the company has “continued to strengthen our position and execute on both our strategy and financial commitments.”

High school students to get hiring boost from workshop

Bartholomew County Works is taking applications for a week-long workshop aimed at providing job market skills for recent high school graduates.

The program is for new graduates interested in immediately entering the workforce. Topics of the weeklong workshop will include professionalism, interview preparation, attitude, resumes, cover letters and more.

Organizers say that many of the participants in previous teen workshops have left with jobs paying up to $16 dollars an hour.

The week-long workshop will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily starting June 3rd, at YES Cinema. There will be an orientation session on May 30th.

For more information or to register, call Lincoln-Central Neighborhood Family Center at 812-378-2638.

Fundraiser Saturday to benefit Columbus Indiana Huey helicopter group

There will be a fundraiser Saturday to help support the group behind the historic Huey helicopter based at the Columbus Municipal Airport.

Columbus Indiana Huey is non-profit group that supports the efforts to maintain and fly the Vietnam War era helicopter. Organizer Jenna Carlton explains:

Carlton says that the open house is the major fundraiser for the group and this is the third year for the event.

Carlton says Saturday’s activities will include a silent auction, food trucks, music and rides in the helicopter itself, weather permitting.

You can stop by the hangar at the airport starting at 10 Saturday morning. The hanger is on the private side of the airport near the Cummins hangar. You can enter at Gate 6 off of Warren Drive and the address is 2045 Taxiway Drive.

Although the open house is free, there is a cost to ride in the Huey, participate in the silent auction or buy meals at the food truck.

For more information you can go to the Columbus Indiana Huey Facebook page here:  https://www.facebook.com/p/Columbus-Indiana-Huey-100079538234845/

Photo courtesy of Columbus Indiana Huey

Holy Cow: Columbus residents look back at Sam Simmermaker’s impact

White River Broadcasting’s Sam Simmermaker, the dean of Indiana sports broadcasters, has announced his plans to retire at the age of 92 after 64 years on the air in Columbus.

Community members are talking about Sam’s legacy.

Chuck Wells, a former Columbus East athlete and owner of the Overhead Door Company, talks about how Sam influenced local sports.

Wells remembers when Sam first interviewed him as an athlete.

Wells reflects on Sam’s approach to covering young athletes

Sam’s last daily sports updates will be next Friday, May 24th. There will be a special AM Columbus broadcast that day from 11 to 1 to celebrate Sam’s career. You can check it out here on News Talk 1010 WCSI and 98.1 FM.

Photo: News Director John Clark and Sam Simmermaker talk in the WCSI studio.

New Green Alert to help missing veterans in crisis

Bartholomew County’s state legislators are praising a new law that seeks to get veterans going through a mental health crisis, the help they need.

There will soon be a statewide Green Alert system that will alert the public when a veteran or military member has gone missing and is believed to be at risk of hurting themselves.

According to Republican State Representatives Ryan Lauer, Jim Lucas and Jennifer Meltzer, the law authorizing the system was passed this year. The Green Alert could be issued by the Indiana State Police for veterans, active service members, Indiana National Guard members and reservists within 48 hours of the individual being reported missing. Notifications will include a description of the endangered veteran and their last known location, much like an Amber or Silver Alert.

In 2021, nearly 140 Hoosier veterans committed suicide while more than 6,000 died nationwide. Indiana’s veteran suicide rate is higher than the national average, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Veterans in a mental health crisis or their loved ones can dial 988 then press one for the Veterans Crisis Line. You can also text 838255. You can also find help at veteranscrisisline.net

Fallen officers to be remembered at Friday ceremony

Local law enforcement officers will be holding a memorial service Friday morning in downtown Columbus to recognize officers who have fallen in the line of duty in the last year.

According to the Columbus Police Department, this year’s service will honor 137 fallen law enforcement officers, including seven from Indiana. Those to be honored include

  • Deputy Timothy J. Guyer of Johnson County.
  • Deputy Sheriff John Durm of Marion County.
  • Sgt. Heather Glenn with the Tell City Police Department.
  • Indiana State Police Trooper Aaron N. Smith.
  • Michael R. Keel with the Indiana Department of Corrections.
  • Indiana State Police Master Trooper James R. Bailey.
  • Deputy Asson Hacker of Vanderburgh County.

The ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. Friday morning at the Public Safety Plaza at Second and Jackson Streets in Columbus.

The event is free and you are invited to attend.

Centra announces Burd scholarship winners

Centra Foundation is announcing this year’s winners for the Loretta M. Burd scholarships for graduating high school students and adults.

Named in honor of Burd, who retired from Centra Credit Union after 47 years, the scholarship program is designed to help local students pursuing a college or technical school education.

The $2,500 high school scholarships are given out with one for each community Centra Credit Union service center. In our area, the scholarship winners are:

  • Carly Otte and Evan Martinez from Columbus East High School
  • Jaden Alba and Kenzie Pendleton from Columbus North High School
  • Lani Coffey, Southwestern Jr. Sr. High School
  • Leslie Austin, Brown County High School

Centra Foundation also awards $2,500 adult scholarships for adult or non-traditional students who have returned to school to pursue a degree or certification. Organizers say the scholarship places value on well-rounded students, with a strong work ethic and community involvement.

Locally this year’s adult scholarship winners are Christina Shaw and Stacy Workman-Wyatt from Columbus and Tanner Bowman from Nashville.

Burd began working at Centra in 1965, rising to become president and CEO in 1987. She retired in 2012, but continued to serve on the board of directors until 2022.