Kyle Stevens
Hometown: Fordyce, NE
College: Wayne State College
Major: English Education


The James Report I The James Report II
The James Report III The James Report IV
The James Report V The James Report VI
The James Report VII The James Report VIII
The James Report IX The James Report X
The James Report XI The James Report XII

The Viking Ship Reports

The Tunnels
The True Gift of Christmas
by Siera
Family is Most Important During The Holidays
by Shawn


What is the true gift of Christmas? There are gifts under the Christmas tree on Christmas morning, but there is also the gifts that are not so obvious.

When considering what it is to be a gift, you have to take in many aspects of the idea. There are physical gifts. The kind you can show your friends and take with you after the holidays.

On the other hand, there are are gifts that can’t come in packages. There are gifts that are so immersed inside of us, that when we are children, we may not even acknowledge them.

However as I grow older, I remember these gifts. Sometimes a gift is given through another gift. If a child presents me with a drawing, I am not looking at the external value of that gift, but at the internal value. The sentimental value is much more important than the physical value of an object. I, like you grow too old for some presents, but the meaning behind them will forever be in our minds.

    This holiday season take time and think about the meaning of a gift. The sacrifice of money in order to obtain a gift. The sacrifice of time in order to be around the people you love. Traveling for the holidays is a common occurrence. Whether it be two blocks or two hours, memories are the best gift of all.

Look around and take in the magnificence of being able to have the ones you love close, and the knowledge that they may not always be there. Take a look at the things that matter the most to you. I value family over the material goods presented at this time of year, the events themselves rather than the gifts.

    Is it your new phone that you hold closest to your heart? For some people it may be. For others, it is the time that can never be taken away from them. Regret is a feeling that is one to be avoided, and what is valued may lead to this feeling if the right gifts are not valued most.

This time of year creates memories that will be in the hearts of people as they carry on with their lives after this short expanse of time. Remember, this is a time where stress is to be forgotten, even if momentarily. We need to consider the gifts that matter most to us. To me, a gift doesn’t come with a bow. Time with family is the best possible gift there is, the moments I have with them is what I hold most dear.

This holiday season, I think I need to focus more on family than things. During the Christmas season, folks tend to rush to Walmart or Target to buy things that are on sale and get the best gift for our family members. Christmas and the whole holiday season in general should be about getting together with family and making memories rather than about getting presents under the tree.

Family is important to me; I am fortunate enough that most of my family lives in town or at the most 20 minutes away from my home. Some people do not have the privilege of having family live so close to them. Many people have to travel long hours to see their families on Christmas or they don’t see them at all during the holidays.

My family spends the holidays having a big Christmas party at one of our homes. At our family Christmas there are tables of food that we aren’t supposed to eat until supper and kids filled with way too much sugar running around knocking things over. It’s a pretty great chaotic mess.

As I get older, I think about Christmas has changed and how it will continue to change as me and my family members get older. Most of us are not going to live in Wausa forever. We are going to leave and start families of our own. I hope that when that time comes we will still value the importance of Christmas in our family and still have a great big chaotic family Christmas.

Tyler B.
Christmas is a time to be with family and friends we get together and have a lot of fun its just family and friend time, you can get to know people It’s not just about the gifts and stuff, it is about having fun.

John R.
Gathering around with friends and family, and getting back together, knowing how everyone has been doing and spreading the cheer and the word of God.

Avery S.

Christmas is a time to be kind, and a time to give to each other.

Mr. Kluender
Christmas is about the B-I-B-L-E, family, and spending time together.

WPS Students Start Sock Drive
By Siera and Shawn


With Thanksgiving just around the corner, it is important to be grateful for everything we have--even relatively simple things we may take for granted-like socks.

The Wausa Public Schools eighth grade class, under the direction of Middle School Social Sciences Teacher Mrs. Lynn Bloomquist, is conducting an elementary-wide sock drive through the month of October.

According to Bloomquist, the sock drive, which includes participants from grades PK-8 as well as staff, is designed to increase student involvement in the community.

“Not only is [this project] civic engagement, it is also teaching the kids about being empathetic toward other people,” Bloomquist said.

Bloomquist said the sock drive was planned entirely by the eighth grade civics class. The class spent time hanging posters, setting out boxes for collection, and presenting information to other classes.   


Students will deliver donations to organizations in Norfolk and Lincoln during their annual civic engagement field trip.

Bloomquist said she hopes students can learn to give without expecting anything in return.

“We shouldn’t give to win prizes,” she said. “We should give just to give out of the kindness of our own heart.”

Steel, an eighth grade student, hopes fellow students are donating for the right reasons.

“I don’t want people to do this for a competition,” he said. “We want people to be nice about it and do a good deed.”

Fellow eighth grader Jaide stressed the importance of getting involved in the community.

“We want to be part of our community by helping others,” she said.

Students, faculty, and staff still have time to donate. Donations can be dropped off in the boxes located outside all elementary classrooms through Friday, Oct. 28.
WHS Social Science students participate in mock election

VOTES Wausa Election Results

Donald Trump and Mike Pence (R) 86.5%

Hilary Clinton and Tim Kaine (D)

Jill Stein and Ajamu Baraka (Green)

Gary Johnson and Bill Weld (Libertarian)

*Results provided by Mr. Caleb Kluender

VOTES National Election Results

Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine (D)

Donald Trump and Mike Pence

Gary Johnson and Bill Weld (Libertarian)

Jill Stein and Alamu Baraka (Green) 5.6%


*Results provided by VOTES Projec 2016


It’s a time of great change in America as citizens all over our nation hit the polls to elect the 45th President of the United States, and for Wausa High School students, this election has provided a unique opportunity to get involved.

WHS students in grades 9-12 participated in a mock election to choose the next president as a part of a civic engagement project organized by Wausa High School Social Science Instructor Caleb Kluender.

Student votes were tabulated and included in a nationwide student election through the VOTES Project 2016. Mr. Kluender said his main objective was to prepare students for their first opportunities to vote.

“If nothing else, this mock election was a test run to get them ready for 2020,” Kluender said. “I want them to get excited about their job as a citizen.”

Mr. Kluender said the process of preparing for this mock election began last year during the primary elections. Students have spent the last month this school year researching the major positions and issues surrounding each candidate. This research culminated in the election last Tuesday, Nov. 1.

Mr. Kluender said a major point of emphasis for students through this process is that engagement in our government is a daily process for the informed citizen that extends beyond the just the presidential election.

“Being involved in your civic duty is not every four-year deal,” Kluender said. “It’s a daily, weekly, yearly thing in terms of interacting with your local government.”

The VOTES Project, which began in 1988, consisted of 153 schools and over 74,000 students participated nationwide with all 50 states and the District of Columbia represented. The VOTES Project, which conducts an election that mirrors the electoral college, has predicted the outcome of six of the last seven elections since 1988.

Wausa High School was one of two Nebraska High Schools to participate in the 2016 election, with the other being Omaha’s Creighton Prep. Results were announced Sunday, Nov. 6 during a live Internet broadcast.

The nationwide election results had Hillary Clinton taking the majority vote as well as the electoral college. By contrast, local results had the Trump/Pence ticket taking the majority vote with just over 85% of the 66 WHS students who voted. Trump/Pence also took Nebraska’s three electoral college votes.

Mr. Klueder said that beyond the results he was pleased with the amount of discussion, critical thinking, and fun this election generated.

“This was a fun experience for kids,” Kluender said. “Hey, we had everyone talking about it in the lunchroom and before school, and I think the kids enjoyed it.”
The Vikings Boys Basketball Team Looks to “Restore the Order"
by Siera and Shawn

The 2016-2017 boys basketball team is looking to come together and establish a winning culture this season.

Wausa Viking head coach, Mr. Caleb Kluender believes if all members of the team can work together this season will be a successful one.

“It’s about teamwork,” Kluender said. “It is hard to do, everyone talks about it (teamwork),it is a process,it is work.”

Kluender said the “x’s and o’s” of the game are not nearly as important as building trust amongst the players on the court.

“You can have whatever plays you want, but you can’t have five people on the court that don’t like each other.”

This team will be a young one, with only one returning senior, but Kluender says that experience is more important than age. Experience on the court is something this team possesses.

“Those kids aren’t young we have five freshmen and four sophomores, but I don’t notice until I look at the roster,” Kluender said. “Those kids got a lot of experience last year.”

The team's only senior player, Gaige is hoping to inspire the underclassmen to work hard and to stay positive.

“Hopefully the team can look up to my actions and see how I do things, and  hopefully they will follow the good things I do and help me correct the bad things that I do.”

The Vikings opened its season last Friday night against Plainview, which resulted in a hard-fought one-point loss. Last Saturday, the Vikings opened at home with a loss to Boyd Co. Despite the 0-2 start, the message of hard work and dedication to the team is still a critical part to team success.  

According to Kluender,  being a good leader and striving to be a good team player on and off of the court this basketball season will be a driving force for the 2016-2017 boys basketball team.

The Vikings take the court tonight at home against Creighton at 8 pm.

The 2016-2017 girls basketball team is looking to build off a winning campaign last season and continue its success on the court.

An experienced group returns for Wausa Lady Vikings Head Coach Terry Nelson, with seven returning seniors. Nelson is optimistic that this veteran group will lead to success on the court.

“Our strengths are that we have a lot of returning players, and we have a lot of girls with a lot of experience,” Nelson said.  “It will be a very good team.”

Nelson said experience is an important factor when it comes it having a successful season, but it also takes a lot of hard work and practice, especially when it comes to installing and perfecting a game plan.

“It takes lots of practice,” Nelson said. “We are putting in and new man to man offense, and we just have to run it and practice it and it will come.”

Senior Regan is hoping to better the team and herself this season.

“My goal as an individual player is to be better than I have been previously,” she said. “As a senior, I don’t want to only better myself, but better the team through leadership and setting an example for people to follow.”  

Nelson’s focus is not just on the score of the games, but building the team through the development of relationships.

“My biggest goal is when we are done with the season to have the girls on the team say that was the best team we were ever on,” Nelson said.  “Maybe not wins or losses but as far as togetherness.”

The Lady Vikes opened last week with a 1-1 record winning at Plainview and losing at home against Boyd Co.

Nelson said if the girls basketball team wants to continue their success, they will need to work on being good teammates and giving it all they have in their games.

”I want each player to play hard and think of others being a great teammate means putting others first before you that's what we are trying to work on,” he said.

The Lady Vikes play at home this evening against Creighton. The varsity contest starts at 6:15 pm.