Great Plains Communications Residential Blog

Keeping Your Family Connected

Page 2 of 70

Team USA 2018

This Friday, February 9, 2018 men and women from around the world will enter the Olympic stadium in PyeongChang, South Korea as the 2018 Winter Olympic games opening ceremony begins. Great Plains Communications has highlighted a few interviews with athletes such as Mikaela Shiffrin, Ashley Caldwell, and pair Madison Chock and Evan Bates. Meet some of Team USA below.

Alpine Skier Mikaela Shiffrin


Aerials Skier Ashley Caldwell


Ice Dancers Madison Chock & Evan Bates


Watch our Facebook on Thursday for a blog on how to watch the opening ceremony, how to stream and more!

2018 Game Day Commercials

We have covered recipes for your big game day party, but how many of you are primarily there for the commercials during the game? Great Plains Communications has found a few of our favorite commercials you can expect to see this year between the Patriots-Eagles action.

Amazon – “Did Alexa Lose Her Voice?”


Budweiser – “Stand By You”


Stella Artois – “Taps”


Doritos & Mountain Dew – Blaze vs. Ice


Don’t miss the big game between the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots this Sunday, February 4 at 5:30 PM CT on NBC.

2018 Game Day Recipes

This Sunday is the big game day as the Philadelphia Eagles take on the New England Patriots! What are you most excited for? Watching and representing your team, watching the commercials, or maybe it is enjoying all the delicious food at the party. Great Plains Communications has found some of our favorite game day recipes from our cable channel, Food Network’s Eddie Jackson.

Bacon-Cheese Pizza Bombs

Think garlic knot mixed with your favorite childhood pizza pockets topped with bacon. Not only are they portable, making it easier to mingle with your friends and enjoy a cold beverage but they are elevated nostalgic flavors everyone is sure to enjoy.

Sweet Chili Chip-Crusted Chicken Fingers

Chicken fingers are another portable classic that not only the adults will enjoy, but are sure to entice the kids at the party as well. This is a recipe that you can truly make your own from the chips you crust the chicken with, to the add-ins for the dipping sauce.

Toasted Coconut Brownies

Any good game day party has something sweet to break up all the savory snacks. These brownies allow you to make large amounts at once and provide a bite of decadence from the chewy chocolate base with texture from the almonds, to the toasted coconut flakes softly embedded into the frosting on top.

Throwback to the First Winter Olympics

Thamas, Bonna, and Lanvik in the 1924 Winter Olympics

It’s a throwback Thursday to January 25, 1924 as the first Winter Olympics began at Chamonix in the French Alps. The games were originally known as the “International Winter Sports Week,” involving six sports. According to the History Channel, “Norway won the unofficial team competition with 17 medals,” while “the United States came in third, winning its only gold medal with Charles Jewtraw’s victory in the 500-meter speed-skating event.”

The original Olympics was formed in 1896 called the Nordic Games and only Scandinavian countries competed. Similar to the modern Olympics, it was held every four years, but always in Sweden. “In 1908, figure skating made its way into the Summer Olympics in London, though it was not actually held until October, some three months after the other events were over,” says. It wasn’t until 1925 that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) formally created the Winter Olympics, making the event at Chamonix the first.

The 2018 Olympic Winter Games is coming up, so watch for more information here on our blog as the February 9, 2018 start date quickly approaches.

Helpful Online Pet Resources

According to the 2017-2018 National Pet Owners Survey, 68% of U.S. households, or around 85 million families, own a pet. This staggering statistic is abundantly clear when spending time online. Pet videos are scattered throughout newsfeeds as the pet parents show off the lovable antics. We’re pampering our pets and looking for more ways to better their lives and that information doesn’t strictly come from your veterinarian anymore. Great Plains Communications has found a few online pet resources to assist in traveling with pets, pet care, and even an app to help stay on top of pet appointments.

Traveling with Pets

The thought of traveling with your pet can be nerve-racking, from figuring out the flight plan to finding a pet friendly hotel and any additional transportation needed. Below are two websites that will shorten your searches and help throughout the entire planning process.

Pet Travel –

“We have over 35,000 pet friendly hotels, inns, bed and breakfasts, vacation rentals as well as businesses that service the pet industry in our database. We are constantly adding pet friendly hotels, dog parks, pet sitters, and fun things to do with your pet. Pet owners who travel worldwide with their pet can find pet import rules for traveling to over 240 countries on Pet Travel.”

Trips With Pets –

“Our goal is to ensure that pets are welcome, happy, and safe in their travels! From booking pet friendly lodging & finding pet friendly things to do, to reviewing pet policies for airlines and care rentals – when it comes to traveling with your pet, we’ve got you covered!”


Pet Care Pet Supplies –

Choose from dogs, cats, fish & aquatic pets, birds, horses, and more. From there, you can find products ranging from food to bedding, gates and grooming supplies. You can even create a profile for your pet to receive additional coupons.

BarkBox –

You may already have a monthly make-up subscription or food delivery, but BarkBox takes the fun of a monthly surprise and delivers it to your dog. Starting at $20/month, each month you will receive a box full of themed goodies – multiple all-natural treats and creatively designed toys your pup is sure to enjoy.


PetDesk App

This is a free app accessible to both iOS and Android users helping you stay organized with your pet’s needs. From your vet, groomer, and boarder, you can connect through the app to request appointments, receive reminders and have all your pet’s information in one location. Find more information at

How Much Bandwidth Does Your 4K TV Need?

Shopping for a TV has become much more than just picking a size that best fits your entertainment center. You now see terms such as 1080p, Ultra HD, and 4K when considering the resolution of your potential TV. But what do they mean?

First things first, the resolution we are talking about refers to the number of pixels that make up the picture on your television. A pixel is one of the very small dots on your screen that light up to create that picture you see. There are roughly eight million pixels in an Ultra HD or 4K (named for those almost 4,000 pixels of horizontal resolution). In the last few years, we have gone from the standard 1080 HD TV to anything over 50 inches overwhelmingly featuring “Ultra High Definition” resolution. But what they might not tell you when you purchase your new 4K TV is that it requires additional bandwidth support. If you are streaming things like Netflix and Hulu, the bandwidth requirement will continue to rise. According to Netflix’s website, the recommended speed to stream their content on an Ultra HD (4K) TV is 25 Megabits per second (Mbps). And Hulu isn’t far behind, recommending 13 Mbps for 4K.


So why does it take more bandwidth?

Each of those pixels is receiving data, telling them when and how to light up the screen. The more pixels, the more detail and the better resolution or picture you see, but at the same time – the more pixels, the more data needed from the Internet.

If you aren’t sure what Internet speed your family needs, check out the Great Plains Communications What Speed Do You Need tool. If you are interested in upgrading your speed or would like to learn about what services we offer in your area, please call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483.

2018 Financial Goals and eBill

Have you set a goal to become more financially responsible in 2018? Great Plains Communications has just the features to make sure you stick to your resolution and succeed.

As a Great Plains Communications’ customer, you have access to eBill, an online platform that allows you to see and pay your current bill, track your long-distance minutes and view your payment history. Auto-Pay, which is set-up with eBill, will allow you to schedule an automatic monthly deduction for your Great Plains Communications’ services. This will provide less clutter from the mail and the elimination of any late fees.

The eBill system also makes Paperless Billing a great option! You can save the paper on one more bill, while maintaining access to your information whenever and wherever you are. So, don’t wait around for your bill to come in the mail, hoping you have budgeted correctly. Take advantage of Great Plains Communications’ eBill and all the helpful features that come with it.

To sign-up today, go to our website, or call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483, and get started making your New Year’s resolution happen with ease.

Great Plains Communications Scholarship Deadline Approaching

The deadline is quickly approaching for the Great Plains Communications Scholarship and Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) Scholarship. No matter if it is a big University or a two-year program at a Tech School, the price of college continues to rise. Great Plains Communications wants to help with the burden of those glaring numbers. Our scholarship program has allowed students to attend schools across the state, majoring in agriculture, law, engineering and much more.

With the deadline of February 1 less than a month away, we encourage you to download the Great Plains Communications Scholarship here and send the completed application packet to the following address:

Great Plains Communications
Scholarship Committee
P.O. Box 500
Blair, NE 68008


The FRS is an affiliate of the National Telephone Cooperative Association (NTCA), an organization of independent telephone companies across the United States. Applicants should be graduating high school seniors with a C grade point average or above and have an interest in returning to a rural community after graduation. The FRS Scholarship application requires a signature of sponsorship from Great Plains Communications. To apply, see your school’s guidance counselor or log onto the FRS website at Completed applications must be submitted to the following address by February 23.

Great Plains Communications
Attn: Scholarship
P.O. Box 500
Blair, NE 68008


If you have any questions regarding scholarships, please contact 402-456-6458 or

2018 Show Premieres

New year, new goals, and new shows on television you won’t want to miss. Familiar faces in unfamiliar storylines, 2018 has an exciting lineup of premieres. We have highlighted just a few trailers below to give you a taste of what to watch for starting this month.


Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams – January 12 on Amazon Prime

A mix of sci-fi short stories, this series not only holds an elite cast (Bryan Cranston, Anna Paquin, Janelle Monae, Steve Buscemi) but it portrays a strange and futuristic world based on Philip K. Dick’s short stories.


The Resident – January 21 on Fox

A modern-day medicine story focuses on a headstrong senior resident as he mentors an idealistic young doctor. The blunt style of his guidance quickly reveals what it really means to work in the medical field, both good and bad.


The Alienist – January 22 on TNT

Set in 1896 in New York City, we are thrown into a murder mystery amongst extreme wealth and severe poverty. Dakota Fanning stars in this psychiatrist investigative series based on the novel by Caleb Carr.

2018 Tech Resolution Tips

It is 2018 and people are setting goals. While according to, ‘Save Money’ and ‘Lose Weight’ are still the top two resolutions for 2018, people are also starting to consider that like a healthy eating balance there also needs to be a healthy tech balance. More people are setting goals such as, “Monitor Phone Use” or “Improve Cyber Security”. Great Plains Communications wants to help you succeed with some tips.


Monitor Phone Use

How often do you find yourself turning on the television to watch a show and end up missing over half of it because you were scrolling through your newsfeed or playing a game on your phone? If you are looking to cut back on the time you stare at that small screen, a first step could be to figure out how long you are currently on it. Apps such as Moment (iOS) or Quality Time™ (Android) help to not only track how long you are in specific apps but will also give you alerts when you have been on for a specific amount of time. You can customize the alerts to your goals and schedule.


Improve Cyber Security

There are many ways to improve your cyber security, but we have listed two main areas as a starting point: Password Management and Apps Management.

Manage your Passwords

Passwords are the lock and key to some of our most personal and sensitive information. Not only are we protecting financial information, but contacts and photos as well. If you are looking to better manage your passwords, work on changing them more frequently and always using unique passwords for different sites. We realize there are now passwords for everything and it becomes increasingly harder to remember all of them, especially if you change them often. Programs such as LastPass and KeePass work to remember your passwords, while also keeping them secure.

Manage your Apps

Do you have an app graveyard on your phone? Maybe you hit Candy Crush hard for a good two months then burnt out quick and haven’t played since. Or maybe you still have an app for that grocery store down the road from the apartment you lived in…three years ago. The kicker question is, have you still been keeping them updated or is that red bubble always above your App Store? You don’t use them, so why keep them updated? Well, all these things can actually leave you exposed to hackers gaining access to your information. But there is a simple solution; delete all those apps you aren’t using. Then taking it one step further and check your apps permissions for the ones you keep. For Apple users, go to Settings > Privacy and check what apps have access to things like your contacts, photos, and microphone.

« Older posts Newer posts »