Check out the DIY Network!

Have you checked out DIY Network?  It’s from the makers of HGTV and Food Network,  and it’s the go-to destination for rip-up, knock-out home improvement television.

DIY Network’s programs and experts answer the most sought-after questions and offer creative projects for do-it-yourself enthusiasts. One of the fastest growing digital networks and currently in more than 56 million homes, DIY Network’s programming covers a broad range of categories, including home improvement and landscaping.

In addition to Cable offerings, the network also have a fantastic website that you can enjoy using your High-Speed Internet connection. There are additional videos and tons of fantastic project ideas.  Check it out right now at http://www.diynetwork.com/.

Let us know if you like the new DIY Network as much as we do in the comments section, below!


Three Reasons to Use a Home Wi-Fi Connection Instead of Mobile Broadband

Many cellular companies are now in the home Internet business, but are these services really as good as a fiber-based wireless network?  The short answer is: not really.  Here are three reasons why you should choose a wireless network powered by fiber-based network over Mobile Broadband.

First off, a few definitions.  A wireless (or Wi-Fi) network using a fiber or wire-based system is what our customers enjoy.  This type of Internet uses a wireless router in your own home to turn a wired system into a Wi-Fi network.  Mobile Broadband uses a cellular connection to provide an Internet connection.  These connections are inherently wireless and are not supported by a dedicated wired connection.

1. A Home-Based Connection is safer in severe weather: When severe weather strikes, many take to their Internet and Smartphones to find out if their friends and families are OK and to find out more information.  If there are too many calls and data requests being made over the entire mobile network, then Mobile Broadband may slow down significantly or stop working completely.  Since a wired connection isn’t carrying much voice traffic and has more bandwidth to access, this is a far smaller concern with a home Wi-Fi connection.

2. A Home-Based Connection is better supported: For Great Plains Communications’ customers, there is no comparison between the service provided by our technicians and Mobile Broadband companies.  Our technicians live in the communities they serve.  That means that they can react to service issues in hours instead of days or even weeks.  When using a national Mobile Broadband service, it is nearly impossible to be a priority.

3. A Home-Based Connection is better for the future: Scientifically, there is only so much data that can be transmitted over Mobile Broadband.  As demand continues to grow, the speed that you will be able to attain will shrink, not grow.  Wired Internet is only getting faster and speeds will continue to increase well into the future.  You can see the proof in our faster speeds across Nebraska.

There are many reasons to trust an Internet connection from Great Plains Communications over those offered by Mobile Broadband.  These are three that we feel truly affect our customers.  If you have more questions, visit http://gpcom.com/residential/internet for more information.


Throwback Thursdays with Great Plains Communications!

Robert and EC Hunt nearly 100 years ago!

We’re joining the Throwback Thursday movement (finally!) At least once a month, we’ll be sharing photos from our past 104 years serving you!  This week, we’re digging way back to our founders, the Hunts. Take a look and let us know what old schools pics you would love to see!

ECSr&Bob Hunt 1943

Robert and EC Hunt nearly 100 years ago!


We Have a New Auto-Pay Contest Winner!

We have a brand new Auto-Pay winner!  Congratulations to Jeanne Mohr of Chadron, NE for being our June winner.  She won a $100 Visa Gift Card as part of our monthly drawing.

Entering for your chance to win up to $200 in Visa Gift Cards is easy!  You just have to enroll in Auto-Pay and Paperless Billing from Great Plains Communications. If you are already signed up for either of these services, then you are already entered!  When you sign-up for one option, then you are eligible to win $100. When you sign-up for both, you can win $200 in Visa Gift Cards if you are selected.

There are many advantages to signing up for Auto-Pay and Paperless Billing.  Auto-Pay means that you will never have to worry about late fees or remembering to send a check.  Paperless Billing is another great step towards “going green.” Plus you can use eBill to manage your billing, payment history, and services.  You’ll have more control than ever over your billing options!

To sign-up for these services, click here .  Then stay tuned to our monthly drawings for your chance to win!


Grant Spotlight: Southwest Public School

It’s our final grant spotlight of 2014! We’re proud to feature Southwest Public School, which earned a $5,000 grant to help students learn valuable entrepreneurial skills.

The grant will help the school to purchase a PlasmaCAM cutting system.  The school will use the new equipment to convert its metal shop classes into a student-run business capable of creating professional quality metal products.  The new program will provide students the chance to learn management, accounting, manufacturing and distribution skills in a real-world setting.

Entrepreneurship is on the rise, particularly in rural America thanks to advances in Internet access and other technology.  This is the third student-run business that we have funded with our grant program.  Other student-run businesses that have received support from us include the Arnold School House Graphics Program.


Celebrate the 4th of July With Your Great Plains Communications’ Services!

We’re just days away from our nation’s birthday and we want to help you make the most of your Independence Day celebration.  Here are a few tips for using your Great Plains Communications services to have the best d-day bash for our great nation.

1. Soundtrack Your BBQ - Use your wireless Internet connection to play music outside during your backyard BBQ through online sites such as Spotify or Pandora.  These sites will both allow you to select patriotic music or a fun summer channel as a soundtrack for your day.

2. Watch a July 4th Marathon While Setting Up Your Fireworks - Holidays means TV marathons!  Don’t miss out on your favorite show while also enjoying your outdoor activities.  With Watch TV Everywhere, you can enjoy more than a dozen channels wherever you are.  That means, you can stream your favorite programs while also firing off bottle rockets and enjoying time with your friends and family.

3. Enjoy Fireworks in Your PJ’s - Enjoy some of America’s best fireworks displays from the comfort of your couch with your Great Plains Communications Cable.  We are pretty partial to the Boston Pops Fireworks display and Fireworks from the Capitol.  Both feature rousing music set perfectly to an outstanding display.

4. Share all of Your Best Moments -  Don’t forget, your cell phone data caps may get maxed out if you are sharing a lot of videos and photos.  Switch your data connection on your mobile devices to your Great Plains Communications wireless Internet instead to save yourself big money at the end of the month.


Grant Spotlight: Bancroft-Rosalie Schools

We’re featuring another grant winner, Bancroft-Rosalie School who received $5,000 for a new engineering program.

The grant will allow the school to provide an Introduction to Engineering class as part of its focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) coursework.  This class will teach students skills including sketching and visualization, project modeling, and production.  STEM courses are vitally important in preparing students for jobs in the new economy.

The funds will help the school purchase a 3-D printer, 3-D scanner, a rotary tool kit, CO2 car kits, and machining kits.  3-D printing is revolutionizing many industries including manufacturing and medical technology.

This grant is part of its “Commitment to Our Schools” program.  The program has provided hundreds of thousands of dollars to schools for a wide range of projects including aquaponics labs, student-run businesses, and theater renovations.  We are so proud of all of our grant winners and can’t wait to see what Bancroft-Rosalie creates!


Get HBO and Cinemax Free From Great Plains Communications!

Get four free days of HBO and Cinemax this week from Great Plains Communications!  During this exclusive update, which runs from June 27th – June 30th, you’ll enjoy the first two episode of the final season of True Blood and much more!

This weekend on HBO, you can also watch the 2014 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction and hit movies such as The Counselor.  You can find a full listing of this weekend’s schedule by clicking, here. Over on Cinemax, there are even more great movies, including Percy Jackson 2 and the Hangover Part III.  See there full schedule, here.  With more than 100 hours of free programming this weekend, there is no reason not to call!

In order to take advantage of this free weekend of HBO and Cinemax, you must call our Customer Response Center at 855-853-1483 by 9pm on June 26th.  This is an exclusive offer for our Cable customers and is not available to those with Satellite.  If you would like to sign-up for Cable services, call now!


Meet Our Teacher of the Year!

Educator Marla Prusa is the newest recipient of our prestigious Teacher of the Year award.

Prusa is a teacher at Howells-Dodge Consolidated Schools.  She has been in the education field for more than 30 years.  She is a member of countless organizations including Nebraska State Business Association and the Family and Consumer Science Teachers of Nebraska Association.

This oft awarded teacher has been recognized as the Nebraska Home Economics Teacher of the Year an impressive 5 times.  She has also accepted the FCCLA Master Advisor Award and the National Home Baking Association Educator Award.

At school, she serves as the Senior Year sponsor, the yearbook advisor, and she runs the clock at the school’s sporting events.  She is part of the schools crisis team and works on the AdvanceEd Team.  Outside of school, she is a member of the American Legion , the 4-H Club, and the Council of Catholic Women.

Pursa was honored at an all-school assembly.  We have honored excellent educators for more than a decade as part of its “Commitment to Our Schools” program, which provides thousands of dollars to support schools in its communities each year.


Grant Spotlight: St. Boniface

Meet another one of our amazing grant winners. St. Boniface has received $4,750 for a new iPad mini lab to help better customize student learning.

The grant will help the school to purchase 20 iPad minis, cases and a mobile iPad mini charger. The school will use the iPads to develop students’ artistic skills including editing video and audio, crafting digital stories, and altering images.  The iPads will also assist with reading comprehension, conducting research, and listening to audio books.  If you are looking for some great apps for your own tablet, here are 15  iPad apps that can help with student creativity.

This was one of four Great Plains Communications’ grants provided as part of its “Commitment to Our Schools” program.  Don’t forget to start thinking about your school’s great idea for next year!

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