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Monday, July 25, 2011

pop-we Dinner Club Reviews the Outer Limits

The population-we™ Dinner Club trekked to the beyond, the “Outer Limits” in Valley, NE. The Outer Limits is a sports bar located at 28564 W Reichmuth Road, which is on the west end of Valley across from the Valmont manufacturing plant. It sits about about 25 minutes from Omaha, NE. Marv picked this location after he stopped in during a charity bike run. When you walk into the Outer Limits it is like most of your neighborhood sports bars...nothing fancy. There is a bar that takes up one wall with flat screen televisions hanging along the walls. Next to the bar there is a hallway that opens into another room that has tables for lager parties and a couple doors that leads to a patio.

Our party of 12 went on a Friday when they have a steak special, they have dinner specials almost every night of the week. Most of us got the steak special but a few tried various dishes such as: chicken philly, shrimp and chicken sandwiches. I ordered the steak with baked potato, salad and a roll. The steak was very good! It was juicy, tender and delicious. This place proves that you can find good food in the most unlikely places. You don’t have to pay a lot to get a great meal.

Horseshoe pits available
We had a great time at dinner and afterwards we went outside, sat on the patio and threw horseshoes, which I have not done in years. My party did not believe I have not played shoes in about 20 years from how well I did. They kept calling me “sandbagger”-- guess they were jealous. I just threw the shoes with the same motion as bowling and funny enough it worked well.

When you have good friends, good food and a nice staff -- you always have a great time.

After compiling the surveys from the other foodies the pop-we Dinner Club gives Outer Limits: 3 star average on a scale of 1-5.

Atmosphere/Decor –  2.5

Cleanliness – 2.5

Wait Staff – 3

Menu – 3.25

Food Presentation –  3.25

Food Portions – 3.5

Food Taste – 3.75

Cost (was the cost worth meal?) – 3.5

Noise Level –  2.75

Overall Experience – 3.25

Fellow population-we™ readers, if you've been to the Outer Limits leave us a comment and tell us what you thought?

Want to do this yourself? To review how to start your own dinner club, visit our January post about doing just that. Remember it is a template; tweak it to fit you and your friends’ tastes. pop-we Dinner Club: good food…good friends…good times.
Outer Limits on Urbanspoon
-population-we™ blog post by Brian Brown
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Monday, July 18, 2011

Join Project Pink'd Aug. 25 for its 2nd Annual ‘Exposed: Real Women for A Real Cause - Take Two’

Pink has a different connotation these days. Today it tells a survivor's story. Those who are adorned in its vibrant color wear it as a badge of honor in the fight against breast cancer. An Omaha-based nonprofit has embraced this new found sisterhood attitude. Introducing -- Project Pink'd -- started by founder and breast cancer survivor Cynthia Sturgeon.

“Pink'd got started in a very simple way and then just snowballed. I was looking for a way to raise funds for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day. I was actually talking with a few friends on ideas for fundraisers and one of them suggested a calendar, like the movie ‘Calendar Girls,'" Sturgeon said. "Well, anyone that knows me knows that I don't do anything simple. We dove right in and after 8 weeks, we were ‘Project Pink'd.’”

In August, Project Pink'd will celebrate its marquee fundraising-event at its 2nd Annual “Exposed: Real Women for A Real Cause - Take Two.” Leading up to the event, cancer survivors, family, friends and significant others will bare it all as “Calendar Girls.” Proceeds from calendar sales fund research for finding a cure for breast cancer.

One such Calendar Girl Jil Briggs Sturgeon said, "As many of you may, or may not know...I have joined up with an incredible group of women and have now added 'Calendar Girl' to my many titles (daughter, mother, sister, wife, friend, etc.). I am literally taking it all off for a great cause! My family, like many others has unfortunately been touched by breast cancer, and it is my mission to do whatever I can to help find a cure for this horrible disease. Together, we are a group of bold, beautiful, and strong local women who want to make an impact on the fight against breast cancer."

All of the calendar girls will be in attendance, when the official calendar is unveiled for the first time, at this August's Project Pink'd Cocktail Benefit. Calendars can be purchased online at The cost is $20 per calendar. You can choose to receive a calendar by mail or in-person at the Thursday, Aug. 25, benefit.

“We realized that we wanted Pink'd to continue and wanted it to be more than a calendar. We decided to continue the calendar and benefit this year and we have grown in so many ways. We are working to add interesting and fun fundraisers all the time. We also look for ways to make a more personal difference with the calendar,” Sturgeon said. "We want every newly diagnosed patient or 're-diagnosed' patient to receive a calendar. We want them to see that there are ‘Real Women’ fighting for them and will stand WITH them in their fight. Instead of reading a brochure with a bunch of words, or reading the Internet, we hope that the calendar will offer a ‘Vision of Hope.’”

Pink'd Founder & Calendar Girl Cynthia Sturgeon at 2010 Unveiling
Event tickets are now available to the official unveiling of this year's calendar at Omaha’s Historic Paxton Ballroom. Tickets are $25 and include two signature drinks including a special signature Pink’d cocktail, hot hors d’oeuvres, free parking, live entertainment by award-winning singer/songwriter Daniel Christian and a chance to win an IPAD2. The benefit will run from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Silent Auction items, raffles and door prizes will also be available. Calendars and Aug. 25 event tickets can be ordered online at

"Though I feel like I’ve just started on this journey I can honestly say that already it has been life changing for me. I have stepped out of my shell and way out of my comfort zone, but when I think about the bigger picture and what so many women and men have to endure because of this disease it makes everything else seem so small and insignificant," Briggs Sturgeon said. "I hope you will consider helping out, and I would love nothing more than to have my family and dear friends there to support me as the calendar is unveiled for the first time."

Facebook users can get updates leading up to and after the unveiling event. Visit the Official Facebook Project Pink’d Like page ( Click on the "Like" button so you can get updates and “sneak peaks” of some of the photo shoots and other events that Pink'd staff and volunteers will be doing all year long.

“I am thrilled to be beating the odds. I will celebrate 4 years of survival this year. I realize that although I wouldn’t have chosen to be a sister in the ‘breast cancer sorority,’ I have received more blessings than the curve balls that cancer tried to pitch,” Sturgeon said. "Because of cancer, I wake up each day grateful for the gift of ‘today’ because the gift of ‘tomorrow’ may never come.”

So, next time you wear pink remember Project Pink'd: Supporting the fighters, admiring the survivors, honoring the taken, and never, ever, ever giving up H-O-P-E!

“I will Fight Like A Girl ALWAYS, not just for me, but for those that have come and gone before me, those fighting this with me, and those that will fight the battle tomorrow,” Sturgeon said.
- population-we blog post by Becky Bohan Brown
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Monday, July 11, 2011

pop-we Fishing: Learn the Role the Internet Plays in Fishing & Friendship in the 21st Century

Fishing on Dewey Lake with family & friends
It was more than 15 years ago when I realized the Internet could help me catch more fish. I was surfing the Net and came across a website called Walleye Central. The site had a directory where other fisherman submitted their name, where they are from and email address. We were planning a trip to Glendo reservoir in Wyoming. I had never fished the lake so I sent an email to a guy that lived in Wyoming. His name was Mike. I found his name on the website and he listed Glendo as one of the lakes that he fished. We exchanged several emails and to my surprise, he mailed me a lake map that was highlighted where to fish and what bait to use. Armed with this great information, we went to Glendo and had one of the most enjoyable trips ever. I kept in touch with Mike and eventually we became pretty good friends. We went back to Glendo for several years and even went fishing with Mike a few times.

Jacob's MA Bluegill Catch
About seven years ago, my father and mother-in-law were looking for some property on a lake that they could eventually move to from Omaha when they retired. My father-in-law Tom is an avid fisherman. They bought a house on Johnson Lake near Lexington, NE. Elwood, Plum Creek and Midway are just a few of the lakes in the area. Once again, I reached out on the Internet to find some information on these lakes. I met a fisherman named Greg from Kearney, NE. He came out to the lake, with his boat and we fished and got some great knowledge about the lakes. I think that I caught my first Wiper out of his boat later that summer. Greg introduced me to a friend of his named Brian. He is from Overton, NE, and lives just a few miles from Lexington. We have gone on several fishing trips together. I consider him one of my best friends and it’s all because of the Internet. In fact, we are going fishing together over the next several days.

Tom's MA Bass
January 2010, it was a beautiful day in western Nebraska. The weather was unusually warm for that time of year. We were ice fishing at Smith Lake in the panhandle. My seven-year-old son Jacob was fishing about 15-feet away from me. He gets a bite -- sets the hook -- and right away I knew he had a pretty good fish. I ran over just in time to see a huge Bluegill come out of the hole in the ice. It was more than a pound and 10-inches long. In the state of Nebraska, a 10-inch Bluegill or one over a pound, is considered a master angler. You get a certificate from the state, which displays the award and details of the trophy fish. I was so proud of Jacob, it was his first master angler. Not long after that, I caught my first master angler Bluegill. A few hours later, my father-in-law hooked into one of the most beautiful Large Mouth Bass’s I've ever seen. It was also a master angler fish. Holy cow – three master angler fish in the same day! Once again, this was all possible because I met a couple from Wyoming that had fished that lake several times the year before. I met Eric and Michelle on a Nebraska fishing forum one-year before this trip. We had planned on meeting up at the lake the year before but the ice went away too fast. The following year, as soon as the ice was safe, Eric emailed me and invited us to join them on the lake. I am sure glad that we did. Probably the best day ice fishing that we’ve ever had. We still keep in touch and we are definitely going to fish together again.

Corey's MA Bluegill catch
January 2011, my 13-year-old son Corey has never caught a master angler fish. I heard on the Internet that there were some big Bluegills being caught on some of the refuge lakes in Valentine, NE. I emailed a guy named Don from the area. A few weeks later we are fishing with him and some of his buddies on Dewey Lake. It did not take long, Corey hooked into a huge Bluegill. The fish qualified for a master angler award. It was bigger than the ones that Jacob and I had caught a year earlier. The smile on his face was worth a million dollars. He had finally done it. Got his first “MA” and again it was the Internet that helped us getting into the area that this was possible.

I have met so many great people on the Internet. Their kindness has certainly helped us catch more and bigger fish. More importantly, I have gained new friends. We have shared a lot of time on the water. Telling stories and catching fish. I must admit, while catching big fish is great, it is the memories and spending time with friends and family that will last a lifetime.
- population-we blog post by Chad Mayer
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Monday, July 4, 2011

2011 Flood Brings About Stories of American Glory This July 4

What could be more American than helping your neighbor? population-we™ readers have seen Omaha, NE on the center stage due to the recent flooding highlighted during coverage of the 2011 College World Series and other national media outlets. Most of the population-we™ staffers live in Omaha and the surrounding areas. We personally have not been affected but have friends and coworkers who are dealing with this devastation.

Aerial shot of Flooding 2011 near Omaha's Eppley Airfield
A fish shack (Surfside) we've trekked to every summer has the Missouri River knocking at its door. A restaurant (Anchor Inn) we used to enjoy summer concerts and play sand volleyball at has been engulfed by the Missouri River. The camp grounds near Honey Creek, IA, where my husband and his cousin spent summers growing up is now entirely underwater. Words alone cannot accurately describe how the Muddy Mo has engulfed up area homes, farmland and businesses. So, here's a pictorial essay of the flooding from a local photographer - Rick Anderson.

The story of the sandbagging volunteers is amazing. My husband and I were checking out at Bakers, a local grocery store, when the clerk who appeared to be 14 told us he'd been at Missouri Valley, IA earlier in the day sandbagging before coming to work. This brought tears to my eyes. There are more stories like this of friends and strangers helping others. A local university provided more than 100 high school students sandbag volunteers for its SummerWorks program. Here's an account from a local minister on his recent sandbagging efforts - Robert Murphy.

When I told my mom that Brian and I were going to volunteer to fill sandbags she told me that I would be following in the footsteps of my Grandpa. All the stories I’ve heard my Grandpa tell over the years; I never remember hearing about his sandbagging efforts. According to my mom’s account grandpa volunteered to fill sandbags during the Great Flood of 1951. My mom, who was only 5-years-old, remembers piling in the car to see where her dad had sandbagged off the Missouri River. Similar to today, while driving she witnessed the river banks that were swallowed up by the Missouri.

Many have noticed population-we™ getting involved by also Tweeting, pinging and facebooking call-for-sandbag volunteers through our various social media platforms. Sandbaggers are still needed. United Way of the Midlands is calling for volunteers. To view an online message board courtesy of United Way, click here.

Recently the Salvation Army and radio personality Tom Becka hosted a stuff the sandbags event with something nontraditional - money. The Salvation Army Western Division includes 28 Corps Community Centers in Nebraska, South Dakota and western Iowa (areas affected by the flood). The Salvation Army's counter top red kettles have been brought out of storage to also help in raising funds for The Salvation Army’s flood relief fund. Look for them at local HyVee grocery stores. Donations are providing support for people working on the area's levees as well as helping those who are being displaced by flooding. Can't make it to a red kettle location, the Salvation Army is also accepting donations via: web, phone and mail. To donate, go to, call 800-SAL-ARMY or mail a check to The Salvation Army, 3612 Cuming Street, Omaha NE 68131. Be sure to designate your donation to "Flood Relief."

With this tragedy the generosity of total strangers shows that the American spirit is alive and well this July 4th. God Bless America!
- population-we blog post by Becky Bohan Brown
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