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Northwest Public Schools receives large sum from JBS for renovations

$250,000 as part of their Hometown Strong program
Published: Apr. 8, 2021 at 9:05 PM CDT
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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - The auditorium at Northwest High School is nearing 50 years old, and it shows. No large-scale renovation has taken place since the 90s when the seats were reupholstered. The lights for the house and the stage are also suffering, with many unable to sustain steady light, and none of the LED stage lights able to produce a flat white color.

This and other factors made it a main focus for the donation they received Thursday morning from JBS in Grand Island. Justin Bstandig, HR Director at JBS, said “when we came out here and took a look at it and what needs to be done, and working with Dr. Edwards and putting this plan together so we could help this auditorium and help the arts and craft for the kids at the school here, it just made sense.” He says that doing this sort of donation is a part of their effort to be a good corporate citizen in the community.

Those at Northwest say this donation is much-welcomed and will go far in improving not only their own student production but also those put on by community members. The Superintendent, Dr. Jeff Edwards, said they “get requests for many different times and with this new renovation we’ll be able to allow, or I guess have access to that for more groups.”

Jeff Vyhlidal, the Choir Director at Northwest High School has used the auditorium for his classroom for the past year. “Our music groups perform in here, we practice in here, and especially through COVID times we’ve been rehearsing in here every day. It’s, it’s our home, essentially. It’s our second home for most of these kids. And this donation is huge. It allows us to make this place really nice, to update it, to fix some of the issues that we’ve seen over the years, and just give these kids a good place to practice and perform.”

Renovations are expected to begin this summer.

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