January 20, 2017
By Herb Ryan
CUSTER, SD – Steve Giraud, owner of Pizza Works in Custer, SD probably qualifies as the only pizzaman with 30 years experience flying commercial aircraft in South Dakota. Steve was a pilot for DHL flying Boeing 737’s, Airbus 8300’s and DC-8 commercial aircraft out of Cincinnati, Ohio. In 2012, DHL laid off all its air crews when they decided to go with a contract carrier. Wanting to stay in the Cincinnati area, the decision was made to buy a local business, but steve said “nothing looked good, bad locations, devious sellers, and shady characters did not instill confidence in the area’s we were looking”.
Giraud knew Gary King the owner of Custer Pizza Works, and his daughter had worked for him in the summer. Giraud said, ” when I found out he was selling, we got together and I bought the business because this was a man I trusted”. The first year in business did exactly what King said it would do. The menu is a little different from Kings, the pizza formulas that he sold Giraud are the same ones used for twenty years.
Giraud explained that they are somewhat of a throwback in the pizza industry that now uses frozen pizza crust, frozen pre-chopped veggies and other prepared toppings. The difference he said was ” we still do it the old school way, we make our own fresh pizza dough, use real Wisconsin cheese and chop our own vegetables every day”. Giraud mentioned, Pizza Works is setting up a loyalty program that gives one point for every dollar spent. You can sign up with your email at Pizza Works in Custer. And continued, Pizza Works Pizza will be available in Hill City in two weeks at Mountain Treats located next to Harley Davidson on Main St.
For the remainder of the winter Pizza Works is offering a Tuesday Night Special – “All You Can Eat Pasta” for $4.99
January 15, 2017
By Herb Ryan
America – the country where everyone has the opportunity to lawfully assemble in public and voice their opinion on any subject. At 1:00 pm Sunday afternoon, January 15, 2017, thirty-four protesters assembled in Way Park carrying signs asking for protection on Medicare the Affordable Care Act and Social Security .
The Senate voted 51 to 48 early Thursday, January 12, 2017 to approve a budget resolution instructing House and Senate committees to begin work on legislation to repeal major portions of the Affordable Care Act.
In a press release dated Thursday, January 12, 2017 South Dakota Senator John Thune said “Passing the Obamacare repeal resolution means the Republican-led Senate has begun delivering on the promises we made to the American people,” said Thune. “The current Obamacare situation is unsustainable. Premiums are soaring, insurance markets are collapsing, and patients’ choices are dwindling. With this resolution, we have put the necessary tools in place to repeal Obamacare and replace it with personalized, patient-centered health care that is affordable for every American.
Mary Boots, Custer County Democratic Chairman said she was at the rally because “there are a group of citizens in the Custer area who are concerned about the future of the Affordable Care Act, the future Medicare and Social Security. We want to make sure The citizens of this country have good affordable healthcare”. Mary continued – We like the Affordable Care Act, but realize some changes need to be made and hope the it is not thrown on the scrap heap leaving some 20 million Americans without healthcare. Sue Martin who has worked in health care said ” I’m going to be needing health care and believe the government has no right to repeal healthcare. If they can improve Obamacare, I would be ok with that” Dennis Knuckles said, ” What we need is affordable health care, not a bunch of platitudes from politicians. Whether it’s a republican or democratic driven healthcare bill, it has to be affordable for everyone, if that’s possible, then I’m for it”.
Most people agreed that the Affordable Care Act has serious flaws that need to be corrected, keeping that thought in mind, affordable health care in this country has always been a challenge and will continue unless radicalized senators in congress can see beyond their personal grudges and party affiliation and do the work of the people. That is why they were elected, they work for us. Apparently, the work most of them do is to appease vested interest and work on getting re-elected. Stop being the silent majority.
CITY OF CUSTER CITY
January 17th, 2017 – City Hall Council Chambers
1. Call to Order – Roll Call – Pledge of Allegiance
2. Approval of Agenda
3. Approval of Minutes – January 3rd, 2017 Minutes
4. Declaration of Conflict of Interest
5. Department Head Discussion
Public Works Director – General Discussion
Finance Officer – General Discussion
6. Public Presentations – Public Hearings
a. Resolution #1-17-17A – Incidental Disbursement Account
7. Old Business
8. New Business
a. Approval of Cemetery Grave Digger
b. Planning Commission Appointment
c. Pace Payment Systems Agreement
9. Presentation of Claims –
10. Committee Reports –
11. Executive Session – Personnel, Proposed Litigation, & Contract Negotiations (SDCL 1-25-2)
Planning Commission Meeting – January 31st, 2017 7:00 P.M.
Public Works Committee Meeting – January 30th, 2017 5:00 P.M.
Regular City Council Meeting – February 6th, 2017 5:30 P.M.
General Government Committee Meeting – February 13th, 2017 4:00 P.M.
Planning Commission Meeting – February 14th, 2017 7:00 P.M.
Regular City Council Meeting – February 21st, 2017 5:30 P.M.
Park & Recreation Committee Meeting – February 22nd, 2017 5:30 P.M.
January 6, 2017
By Herb Ryan
A group of concerned citizens who described themselves as: Lynn Kolund, retired forest service district ranger, Jim Allen, backcountry horseman, Alice Allen, South Dakota taxpayer, Rick Hudson, interested hunter, Steve Pischke, concerned local citizen and David Miller, local historian presented a program consisting of a 20 minute slide show with comments, followed by a brief question and answer session on the wrongs of the Bismark Lake and Spearfish Canyon Land Swap at the Pine Room in the Custer County Annex building in Custer, SD, Thursday evening January 5, 2017
The details and effort made on the presentation was commendable, Jim and Alice Allen and the others are private citizens, who apparently were fed up with the way government bureaucracy, specifically the Governor’s Office was once again using its authority and media muscle to force yet another “Grand Scheme” on the backs of taxpayers.
People started drifting in around 6:00 pm and by 6:30 there was an overflow crowd. Speaking with Alice Allen earlier in the evening, she mentioned, this was the first time she had ever organized anything like this, ” I really didn’t know if anyone would show up” she said. And I agreed, there were two high school basketball games at the Armory, and the 2nd Annual Custer School District Hall of Fame Ceremony. Plus, the meeting was advertised with no mention of food or drinks, and finally, the weather was somewhat chilly.
The night was a prime example of a group of people, determined to find a solution that represented the will of the people, not the will of the government. At the end of the presentation Alice Allen asked, “would it be appropriate to call for show of hands from people who oppose this land swap” The answer, every hand in the room shooting into the air. When asked for a show of hands from those who approved of the swap, maybe one hand went up, maybe.
I thank the group for being proactive and not sitting around a coffee table complaining about everything, and doing nothing about it.
Beat the winter blues and Escape to the Park! Custer State Park will be hosting the Black Hills Ukulele Orchestra, Saturday, January 21 from 1:00-2:00pm at the Visitor Center located at the intersection of Hwy 16A and Wildlife Loop Road. The orchestra will play a selection of popular music and end the program with an open invitation to audience members to try their hand at the ukulele. The Black Hills Ukulele Orchestra is a program of the non-profit Custer Area Arts Council.
Don’t forget our winter hikes and trail challenge; Escape to the Park snowshoe hikes take place Saturday, January 14, February 11, and Saturday, March 11. Also note Saturday, February 18 and Saturday, March 18 on your calendar and watch for more programming information.
A park entrance license is required to enter the park and can be purchased at the Park Office from 8:00am to 4:30pm during the week, or at the Visitor Center open from 9:00am to 4:00pm.
For more information check the Custer State Park Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/CusterStatePark/ or contact the Park Office at (605) 255-4515.
by Rev. Dustin Bartlett
I’m always surprised by how many Christians who are otherwise well-versed in the Bible have never heard of Jubilee. Are you familiar with Jubilee? Before you say, “Yes!” – I’m not talking about the lamest of all X-Men. No, Jubilee is the ultimate reset button. It’s a year of rest, renewal, and a clean start.
According to the Bible, every seventh day is a Sabbath day – a day of rest. People aren’t supposed to work on the seventh day of the week, but instead spend that time in reflection, prayer, and leisure. In the same way, every seventh year was supposed to be a Sabbath year. Farmers weren’t supposed to plant any new crops, or prune their vineyards. The land, itself, was given a year of rest.
But Jubilee represents the ultimate Sabbath year. After seven sets of Sabbath years, on the fiftieth year, the trumpet announced Jubilee. In the year of Jubilee all debts were forgiven, all slaves were set free, and all property which had been repossessed to pay off debts was returned to the family from which it was originally taken. Jubilee was the ultimate fail-safe in preventing the rich from getting richer as the poor got poorer. Every fifty years, the national economy was reset!
I always think it’s interesting how many business owners will refuse to make a cake or arrange flowers for a gay couple “because it says so in the Bible,” yet none of them are ever clamoring for a chance to erase all their invoices every fifty years.
Seriously, can you imagine what would happen if Christians chose Jubilee as the part of the Bible they insisted their political candidates support! Can you imagine evangelical Christians only voting for candidates who would promise to uphold the sanctity of Jubilee, and have all debts forgiven and all repossessed property returned every fifty years!
The year of Jubilee is what Jesus was referring to when he preached a sermon in his hometown and said:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Luke 4:18-19)
I realize that a resetting of all debts every fifty years is probably not practical in our modern, global economy. But I do think it’s worth noting that God was so concerned about the problem of the rich getting richer at the expense of the poor that God basically exercised the nuclear option to take care of the problem. God cares about the poor and the powerless, and judges us according to whether or not we care too.
So, as we begin a new year, take a moment and read Leviticus 25, and reflect on this ancient Biblical mandate. Jubilee means that, in order to have a clean slate and a fresh start, you can’t hold on to the advantages you may have accumulated over others. Every so often, you’ve got to hit the reset button.
Have a jubilant New Year!
Custer, SD – Custer Free Press.com started publishing news online December 11, 2015 among the first articles: NASA Astronaut Kelly Lindgren Safely Returns to Earth. Since then we have published 1,027 articles. Today Sunday, December 11, 2016, Custer Free Press.com stats from December 11, 2015 – December 11, 2016 show 57,390 views averaging 2 1/2 pages per visit, with a total of 25,027 unique visitors. This does not include total Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Google plus stats, or people who have bookmarked the site.These are actual counts for one year, not cumulative counts over several years.
Counts are important to advertisers and Custer Free Press.com. As a result of these positive counts, Custer Free Press.com has been funded through January 2018.
Having owned an Auction Company and Antique Business among other ventures, the reality of success always presents itself in simple terms. Do people need your service, will they be repeat customers and will they tell others about your service. Having seen the one year results, for Custer Free Press.com it’s yes to all of the above.
A planned aggressive marketing schedule starting in February 2017 targeting the tourist trade will increase our visibility on-line resulting in a substantial increase in site viewership and advertiser exposure.
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October 21, 2016
By Herb Ryan
Custer, SD – 2016 Annual Custer Area Chamber of Commerce Membership Banquet opened with a welcome by Craig Pugsley and an Invocation by Reverend Van Arp. Pugsley in his introduction mentioned that when he first arrived on his job in Custer State Park in 1977 “I looked around and wondered, who are these old people who work here, well guess what, what goes round comes around and now I’m one of those old people in that office”.
Through the years, Pugsley said he has seen much positive change in the tourist industry. ” Back in those early days, Tourism was seen as a Memorial to Labor Day business. My first involvement with the chamber was when then Director Lindy Manlove called the park to ask for a representative to join a newly formed Visitor Promotion Committee. Our Park Director at the time was Warren Jackson and he thought I would fit the bill. Since that time I have had he pleasure of working with some of the most tenured directors in South Dakota including Cindy Mayes, Jackie Wentworth and of course Dave Ressler. Now we see tourism beginning in April and extending through October and into November. The Custer Community has seen boosts in occupancy in during the peak season and efforts are focused on expanding the shoulder season”.
Craig Pugsley over the years has worked closely with the South Dakota Department of Tourism and has been involved with the Custer Chamber of Commerce for 32 years, and served on the Board of Directors for the Rapid City Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Black Hills Badlands and Lakes Tourism Association among others and is now the former Custer Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors President.
Craig Pugsley was awarded The Lifetime Achievement Award presented by Julie Brazell, Naturalist at Custer State Park.
Mammo or Bust
Business of the Year
Custer True Value
Individual of the Year
Gene and Linda Fennell
Dan and Linda Custis
Al Photos: Herb Ryan/Custer Free
October 10, 2016
The Whitney Rencountre family performed traditional Native American dances today as part of the Native American’s Day celebration at Crazy Horse Memorial in Custer, SD. The group included Whitney, wife Jesse and daughters Jay Lee, Sophie, Mila and Sadie. Whitney is on the Board of Directors of the South Dakota Humanities Council, the Board of Directors of the Rapid City Convention and Visitors Bureau and founder of the Showtime Singers Drum Group.
The Native Americans’ Day celebration at Crazy Horse each year includes naming the Crazy Horse Memorial Educator of the Year, honoring an individual who has made significant contributions to Native American education. The award includes a $1,000 grant to the recipient’s school library or to programs of his or her choice that help students. The holiday’s program also includes a free public program featuring Native American singers and dancers. Programs and displays featuring artists, storytellers and hands-on activities for children are offered in the visitor complex. Crazy Horse Memorial