Nov
25

Make it a Family Affair this Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a holiday enriched with unique traditions. Does your family travel each year, packing up the car and heading to grandma’s house? Do you always make a special side dish that turkey wouldn’t taste the same without? No matter if you remember the day through memories of overeating and a mid-afternoon nap or tossing a football through the biting November wind, Thanksgiving is a time to revel in the things we have and the people we have to enjoy them with.

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, Great Plains Communications wants to share a couple crafts to get the kids involved this year. While most of the focus is on food preparation, it is easy to forget that the tiny helpers have plenty to be thankful for as well. So, take a moment between mixing and pouring to get their little hands busy.

Pumpkin Spice Play Dough

  • 2 cups water
  • 10 drops red food coloring
  • 10 drops yellow food coloring
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 cup salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 4 tsp cream of tartar
  • 4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Fill a sauce pan with water, food coloring and oil. Heat contents of saucepan over medium heat.

In a bowl mix salt, flour, cream of tartar and spices.

Add contents of bowl to saucepan and stir continually until the dough pulls away from the edges. The play dough and pan will be warm and will continue to set up after the burner is off.

Leaf Placemat

  • Leaves of their choice
  • Clear Contact paper

Place the leaves in any pattern on one sheet of contact paper.

After all the leaves have been placed, gently set a second piece of contact paper (sticky side down) over the leaves.

The Pumpkin Spice Play Dough will keep them busy as you prep. The Leaf Placemats will give them something to bring to the table (literally). They will be able to show all the relatives their beautiful artwork as everyone sits down to eat.

As a fourth generation company, Great Plains Communications knows the importance of family and tradition. We are thankful for our founders and employees. But most of all, we would like to share our sincere appreciation for your confidence and loyalty. We are deeply thankful and extend to you our best wishes for a happy and healthy Thanksgiving. Let us know what you are thankful for this year, in the comments below.

Nov
20

Mysteries of “The Cloud”?

What is “the cloud”? Most people think of it as a technological mystery, an untouchable place, a visible mass of condensed water vapor floating in the atmosphere. No matter how you visualize “the cloud” in your mind, Great Plains Communications wants to share some information on not only what it is, but what you can do with “the cloud”.

For starters, your files are NOT literally being sent up into the sky. “The cloud” refers to a process called cloud computing, which is simply the method in which files are transported from a computer, smartphone or tablet to physical servers, via the Internet. An example would be your e-mail. Web-based e-mail (Gmail & Yahoo) uses a cloud computing program, making it possible for you to check it from any location.

Other than e-mail, cloud computing is a good way to backup your music, photos, and documents. Most companies will even have a backup to your backup, by storing files on more than one server in more than one center. Say goodbye to the hassle of figuring out different ways to get pictures off your phone, cloud computing also makes sharing files as easy as creating a folder and choosing which device you want it to go to or who you want to see it.

“The cloud” isn’t such a scary and mystical thing, but rather a tool to make sorting, storing, and understanding today’s technology a little easier. A couple recommendations would be dropbox.com, a user-friendly site that is what it says, a drag and drop server there to help save and transport your files from different devices. There is also Google Drive, which is a good option if you already have a Gmail account. The Internet provides you with a multitude of options right to your devices, which gives you the opportunity to pick the one that best fits your needs. If you have questions on your Wi-Fi or Internet service, call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483 and one of our representatives would be happy to help you.

Nov
18

The Importance of Landline Telephones this Winter

Gloves: check. Scarf: check. Hat: check. Landline telephone: check? Most people don’t think about a landline when thinking about weather safety precautions. You’re probably thinking, “Well I have my cell phone, why would I need a landline?” We don’t blame you. Cell phones are great on the go and bring some of the best technology right to your fingertips. What most people don’t know is that cellular towers are not required to provide backup power. So, when we get hit with a Midwestern blizzard your cellphone may not work through a power outage. Great Plains Communications wants to shed some light on just a few of the advantages to having a landline telephone.

  • Security in an emergency, with consistent reliable 911 connections and the guarantee it will work through a power outage
  • No need for batteries or charging when using a corded phone
  • Elimination of potentially faulty connection and dropped calls
  • Top-quality sound and clarity

Remember, if the power isn’t working in your home, most likely neither are your cordless phones. Keep your family safe this season and make sure you have a corded phone plugged into a wall-mounted phone jack. That way you can be sure to have a clear and reliable connection, no matter what Old Man Winter throws our way.

For more information on how you can get a landline telephone, visit our website or call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483 and one of our representatives would love to get you set up today.

Nov
13

Tips on Boosting Your Wi-Fi

We have come a long way from sitting down and writing a letter to a friend when we want to chat. Even the number of telephone calls are rapidly decreasing. Now-a-days, we connect through Wi-Fi. Gone away is the physical aspect of communication; instead we open a laptop, grab a tablet, or press some buttons on a smartphone. Without Wi-Fi, those actions would get us nowhere, and when our Wi-Fi starts to lag we get upset. Before you jump to blaming your Internet provider or electronic device, Great Plains Communications has some ways to ensure that your personal Wi-Fi is working at maximum capacity.

  • Location, Location, Location: Assess where your router is located within your home. Make sure to place your router as close to the center of your home as possible, to ensure every square foot of your home receives the same signal strength. Also, check how close your router is to things such as microwaves, land-line phones, and other devices that could interfere with your Wi-Fi connection.
  • Make Sure it’s Secure: Always be sure to protect your Wi-Fi from hackers and thieves by setting a secure password on your router. Change your passwords frequently for maximum security. If devices outside your home are using your Wi-Fi, this not only depletes your Wi-Fi signal, but it can open up your personal information to hacking.
  • Bring Back the Bunny Ears: Just as bunny ears used to boost your television connection, many routers will support external antennas. Just position your high-gain antenna for your router in a position to maximize your Wi-Fi signal.
  • Time for an Upgrade: With technology changing rapidly, it is important to maintain the best devices for maximum use. If you have had the same router for multiple years and nothing else seems to be helping boost your Wi-Fi, it could be time to think about shopping for a new model.

If you have questions on your router or Internet service, call 1-888-343-8014, Option 1 and one of our Customer Response Representatives would be happy to help you.

Nov
11

Veterans Day: Tribute to Our Troops on GPC-TV

Happy Veterans Day from Great Plains Communications! We want to take this time to thank all the men and women who have and currently are risking their lives for our country. To show our appreciation, we continue the tradition of our Support Our Troops Program and Veterans Day programming on GPC-TV.

Today we will be sharing stories, pictures and service dates of current and retired military members on GPC-TV. For those who have Great Plains Communications cable, you can find them on GPC-TV on channel 2. If you do not use our cable services, you can still check out the stories on our Facebook page, where we will be sharing images throughout the month of November.

If you have served or have a loved one serving, please let us know in the comments below or by sending in a picture. We are avid supporters of the military and would love to show our appreciation for your service by including you in our Veterans Day tribute. Here are just a few of the military personnel that we will be celebrating today.

Brian Scott

 JD Hunt

Wyatt Leehy

Nov
06

Support Our Troops Program, It’s Finally Here!

The holidays bring colder weather and warmer hugs, crowded malls and love filled boxes; it is the time of year that increases our stress but also our compassion. Great Plains Communications is here to help with the stress, so that your family can focus on all the good things the holidays bring. November 1st marked the first day of our Support Our Troops Program, which means we are offering free shipping to all customers with a loved one serving our country, no matter if they are stateside or overseas.

We have found great success with the program in the past, and we are overjoyed to be a helping hand in bringing a touch of home to your loved ones. You can find the registration form and full program requirements at www.gpctroops.com. Below we have included tips on how you can make the most out of your care package.

If sending overseas, it is important to know specific things that are not allowed to be shipped. As we are all aware, there are to be no forms of explosives or lighters, and here is a list of additional items:

  • Aerosols
  • Air bags
  • Alcoholic Beverages
  • Ammunition
  • Cigarettes
  • Dry Ice
  • Fresh Fruits & Vegetables
  • Gasoline
  • Nail Polish
  • Perfumes containing alcohol

Each country has their own shipping rules and regulations, so before sending your package, be sure to check that everything you send follows their individual guidelines.

Enough with things that aren’t allowed to be shipped, let’s talk about what fun things you can include in the box. Cookies, magazines, music, these are all things that have been proven as favorites over the years. A touch of home to them could be your handwriting on a Christmas card, the smell of your famous gingerbread cookies, socks, a present they dreaded as a child but now feel the love as they slide their foot inside. No matter what fun things you choose to put in, make sure it is all securely wrapped. There are many opportunities for damage between here and the package’s destination, so use bubble wrap and packing tape to insure the best protection.

You provide the stuffing and we provide the postage. The Support Our Troops Program will send you the Pre-paid Postage Stamp and you pick the destination. To make sure the package is mailed correctly, we have included an example of a proper senders address below:

CPT JOHN DOE

UNIT 2050 BOX 4190

APO AP 96278-2050

Now grab those pumpkin bars you know they miss or write them a letter describing the colors of Fall and all the people who love them. Fill the box with home, whatever that means to you, and let us deal with the rest. With an expected holiday overseas ship time of a month, a November 1st start date is plenty of time to make sure your loved one receives their gift. Let us know what exciting goodies you plan to ship off, in the comments below!

Nov
04

Saying Goodbye to G4

G4

NBC Universal has finally pulled the plug on the G4 channel. This is not a huge shock to the network, as they stopped putting further investment into the channel back in 2013 when there was talk of it being replaced by Esquire. The replacement fell upon a different channel. Though, it was decided that G4 would not air any new shows, but rather continue to show reruns of LOST, X-Play, Ninja Warrior, and Heroes, accompanied by an occasional movie.

Great Plains Communications will be removing G4 from the channel lineup, effective November 30, 2014. We apologize for the inconvenience, but would like to remind you that this was a decision made by NBC Universal and we must abide by their contractual requirements.

If you have questions over this change, please call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483.

Oct
30

Having Fun with Fall

Fall is a season of change. The weather is changing, the leaves are changing, and everyone is gearing up for the holidays. Great Plains Communications has found three fun ways to embrace and enjoy the changes around us.

To start us off, HGTV offers all kinds of creative ways to decorate your home for the season. This video shows you how to make three easy pumpkin projects that could be used for Halloween, then later for Thanksgiving.

Our next video is just one of the many fingernail art tutorials offered by Disney. Here they show you how to create an easy yet beautiful spider web for Halloween.


As we all know and love, carving pumpkins is a trade of the season. The family gathers to put their unique stamp on the doorstep for all passerby’s to see. But don’t miss out on what else those little orange vessels have to offer! In our last video, Alton Brown from the Food Network will show you just what else you can get from your pumpkins this year.

This year, don’t let Fall just be your transition into the holiday season. Stop and enjoy the people and changes around you. Let us know in the comments below, what fun activities or decorations your family is going to do this year!

Oct
28

Halloween Safety Tips for the Whole Family

Red, orange, and yellow leaves line the streets and blanket the yards. Carved pumpkins sit on doorsteps, and costumes hang in closets, all as a reminder that Halloween is just a few days away. What is your little one anxious to become this year? Will she be Elsa, or he a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle? Great Plains Communications wants to wish everyone a happy and safe Halloween and we would like to pass along some safety tips to help make sure that happens.

  • Have a safe walking plan for the evening. Children’s excitement level is often escalated on Halloween as they see the sweet potential in each house, no matter if it is across the street or down the block. Help them to remember to look left, right, and left once more before holding the hand of an adult and crossing the street. Also, don’t forget to put down any electronic devices as you cross, and choose spots further away from the street to stop and take pictures.
  •  Find Creative Ways to Add Safety Precautions to Costumes. Have your kids use fun metallic stickers or reflective tape on their candy bags, it could be a fun way to personalize their goodies and help them be seen by passing drivers. Glow sticks could be another fun way to brighten up the nighttime walk!
  • Be a Cautious Driver. Just because you are not in costume, does not mean you are not a large factor in Halloween safety. As a driver, make sure to eliminate any distractions inside the car and be especially alert in residential areas. Allow extra time to look for kids between parked cars and at intersections. Typical trick-or-treating hours are between 5:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., so buckle up and stay alert for all the little witches and zombies walking the streets.

For more tips, check out Safe Kids Worldwide and remember that Great Plains Communications hopes you have a fun and safe Halloween! Let us know below what creative safety tricks your family does each year.

Oct
23

Fusion: A New Way of Staying in the Know

Where do you look for the breaking news stories? How do you find the latest gossip? Check out Fusion, a unique channel offering a combination of news and entertainment with underlining light-hearted humor. You will find shows such as Alicia Menendez Tonight, Strange Medicine, and Midterm Mayhem on their cable station, accompanied by news stories covering social and national events on their website. Great Plains Communications launched the channel on September 30, 2014, and has found great success in it.

Fusion isn’t just your typical news station. Backed by Univision and ABC News, a unit of the Walt Disney Company, the network strives to connect with you in a more engaging, conversational way, rather than merely throwing facts at you. Through interviews, diverse show hosts, and a free-flowing reporting style, Fusion provides an exclusive information outlet.

So, next time you are looking for more information on a big news story, check out Fusion. When you want to check on the latest politics or what new movie your favorite actress stars in, check Fusion. You can discover where Fusion falls on your channel lineup by looking at our handy channel guides. Let us know what show you have come to enjoy on Fusion!

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