Great Plains Communications Residential Blog

Keeping Your Family Connected

Tag: Community (page 1 of 13)

Congratulations to our Q4 Customer Survey Winners!

Say congratulations to our quarterly survey winners, Dean and Carol Seamann of Spalding, NE, Alice Gibson of Arnold, NE, and Connie Comes of Rushville, NE!

Dean and Carol Seamann of Spalding, NE receives their $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q4 Customer Survey.

Dean and Carol Seamann of Spalding, NE receive their $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q4 Customer Survey.

The survey provides feedback on how customers feel about and benefit from Great Plains Communications products and services. This information is helpful to track how technology is advancing the communities we serve and provides information to help make changes and improvements that can strengthen our business as a whole as well as enhance our customers’ experience.

Alice Gibson of Arnold, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q4 Customer Survey.

Alice Gibson of Arnold, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q4 Customer Survey.

We are always eager to get better insights from our customers and we know having as many responses as possible helps with this goal. We also understand that our survey takes time, so we created a coinciding drawing to thank you for participating. As you can see in the pictures, our winners, Dean & Carol, Alice, and Connie received $100 gift cards.

Connie Comes of Rushville, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q4 Customer Survey.

Connie Comes of Rushville, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q4 Customer Survey.

We always want to hear unbiased feedback, so it doesn’t matter how someone rates us, it just matters that they complete the survey. Every customer will be reached within a calendar year, so be on the lookout for your chance to win a great prize!

Business Appreciation – Red Willow County Courthouse

Great Plains Communications is proud to highlight another one of our business customers, Red Willow County Courthouse in McCook, NE.

The process began in 2014, when Red Willow County Courthouse completed the construction of its new Law Enforcement Center and jail in McCook and was looking into updating its more than 25-year-old phone system. Explains McNutt, “We initially had someone put in a different phone system, but it worked poorly and caused lots of frustration. We then made the decision to put our project out for bids, and included not only the phone system but our other communications services as well.”

He continues, “We received several bids including one from Great Plains Communications. I met multiple times with Philip Jensen and others from Great Plains Communications, as did our Commissioners, Head of Maintenance and all department heads. Great Plains Communications clearly did their research to determine our needs. I liked their approach and their willingness to make sure our needs would be met. We gave our business to Great Plains Communications — phone, Internet and TV — and have been customers for about a year.”

Great Plains Communications Installs Fiber and More

Philip Jensen is Sales Manager of Business Accounts at Great Plains Communications. He notes, “The first thing we needed to do was install fiber optic cable to the Red Willow County Courthouse. We also utilized as much existing cable and wiring in the Courthouse and Sheriff’s Department as we could, combining it with the new fiber optic cable. This allowed greater flexibility for their communications services, and helped prepare Red Willow County Courthouse and other county buildings for many years to come.”

For phone services, the Business Solutions department of Great Plains Communications installed a Panasonic NS700 Hybrid analog and digital IP PBX. All of the Red Willow County Courthouse phone lines were combined into one PRI (Primary Rate Interface) connection, which saved money. PRI also allowed for Caller ID service to every phone in the Courthouse and Sheriff’s Department, which they previously did not have on all phones.

Two Internet access connections are set up — one for the Red Willow County Courthouse and one for the Sheriff’s Department. The Sheriff needed a separate connection and more bandwidth in order to efficiently upload and download footage from cameras and conduct training. Inside the Courthouse, Great Plains Communications combined all connections into one, therefore providing more bandwidth with only one connection to maintain.

Jensen recalls, “We installed the phone system on Presidents’ Day 2015, since the Courthouse was closed that day and installation could be done with minimal downtime. Our PBX person did training by phone for County employees before the phone conversion to get them up to speed. Technicians from Great Plains Communications also stuck around another week to make sure everything was working well.”

Better, Faster Connections

McNutt is pleased with the upgrades to their phone and Internet services. “Great Plains Communications connected our Law Enforcement Center and Jail to the Red Willow County Courthouse. For the sake of efficiency, we really wanted those two facilities tied together in our communications stream. We’re also benefitting from much faster Internet speeds and clearer sound quality with our phone calls,” McNutt says.

He adds, “It’s not just me. Everybody is so enthusiastic about the people from Great Plains Communications. They’ve bent over backwards to accommodate our needs. They get right on it if we have questions or issues, and if they don’t have the answers immediately, they’ll find out and get right back to me. I can’t say enough about how courteous and easy to work with they are. I also appreciate having one designated person at Great Plains Communications who takes care of our account, so there’s just one phone call to make. We’re out here in rural Nebraska, and we’re still getting advanced services and great customer support.”

Ready for the Future

What’s ahead for the Red Willow County Courthouse? McNutt replies, “We don’t have any major technology upgrades planned for 2017. However, we will be working on getting additional facilities tied into our network. And now that we have the infrastructure in place, we may look at using new applications such as video conferencing for the Courthouse.” Jensen sums it up this way: “Thanks to fiber, they’re pretty well ‘future proofed’ as far as communications.”

Don’t Miss Our Scholarship Deadline!

As the kids head into the second semester of school, the thought of graduation planning quickly becomes a reality. Continuing on after high school will bring new experiences, exciting information and also expenses. 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 by offering scholarships.

The February 1, 2017 application deadline is rapidly approaching. Don’t miss out on this financial opportunity. You can find more information and a full listing of our scholarships on our web page or call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483. The deadline will be here before you know it, so be sure to get your application in soon.

If you have received a scholarship from Great Plains Communications and are currently in school, we would love to hear from you! Let us know how it made a difference in the comment section on our Facebook page.

Get Fit in 2017 with the Nebraska 150 Challenge

It’s 2017 and for many that means New Year’s Resolutions. If you are one that’s trying to get fit for the New Year, find support in our great state of Nebraska. This March, Nebraska is celebrating 150 years of statehood and as part of this milestone, the Nebraska Sports Council, in partnership with the Celebrating Statehood Board and Staff, have launched a year-long web-based wellness challenge called NE 150 Challenge.

The NE 150 Challenge is free for individuals and offers motivation for achieving and tracking physical activity minutes, such as walking, running, and biking. This challenge presents a great opportunity for our state to rally around wellness.

To start tracking your activities, you must first register for an account. To register and find more information on the NE 150 Challenge, go to https://www.ne150challenge.com/.

New Year’s Eve Recipes with Food Network

The year 2016 is coming to an end. As January 1, 2017 approaches, we reflect on where the past year has taken us and where we want to go in the year to come. Great Plains Communications has picked some of our favorite recipes from our cable channel, Food Network to help bring in the New Year.

 

Tortellini Skewers – Ree Drummond

This make-ahead dish is simple yet delicious. The tomato and mozzarella cheese pair nicely with the spinach tortellini and the pesto sauce pulls everything together for a light bite.

Prosciutto-Wrapped Scallops – Giada De Laurentiis

This dish combines the fruitiness of sun dried tomatoes with the saltiness of prosciutto to accompany the delicate flavor of sea scallops. As Giada says in the video clip below, they are elegant enough for a dinner party and easy enough for just yourself.

How to Open a Champagne Bottle – Ted Allen

Always nervous to open the bottle of Champagne? With these tips from Ted Allen, you will be sure to have it chilled to the correct temperature to lower the pressure and keep control of the cork.

 

Great Plains Communications would like to wish everyone a safe and wonderful New Year!

Holiday Storage and Clean-Up Ideas with the DIY Network

The holidays bring decorations, visiting family and friends and tons of delicious foods. While it is truly a magical time to spend with loved ones, Great Plains Communications has found some of our favorite cleaning tips and holiday décor storage tips from our cable channel, DIY Network to keep in mind and help take the stress out of holiday prep and cleanup.

With an array of dishes being prepared that can leave stains on your wood cutting board and an odd smell in the fridge, all you need to fix both of these issues naturally is a couple lemons. Watch below to find out how:

When the last minute wrapping is finished, and all the guests have left, it can be a pain to find storage for all the holiday decorations. Make it easy for next year, and use a coat hanger to keep your lights from tangling. Watch this video to learn how:

Need a last minute appetizer idea? What about five appetizers from one block of cheddar? Watch the video below to find out how:

Congratulations to Our Q3 Customer Survey Winners!

Amy Fiedler of Bloomfield, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q3 Customer Survey.

Amy Fiedler of Bloomfield, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q3 Customer Survey.

Say congratulations to our quarterly survey winners, Amy Fiedler of Bloomfield, NE, Ashley Vontz of McCook, NE, and Joyce Bottorf of Petersburg, NE!

The survey provides feedback on how customers feel about Great Plains Communications products and services, as well as how our products benefit the lives of our customers. This information is helpful to track how technology is advancing the communities we serve and provides information to help strengthen our business as a whole.

Broadband Technician, Adam Simpson presents Ashley Vontz of McCook, NE with her $100 Visa gift card.

Broadband Technician, Adam Simpson presents Ashley Vontz of McCook, NE with her $100 Visa gift card.

We are always eager to get better insights from our customers and we know having as many responses as possible helps with this goal. We also understand that our survey takes time, so we created a coinciding drawing to thank you for participating. As you can see in the pictures, our winners, Amy, Ashley, and Joyce received $100 gift cards.

Joyce Bottorf of Petersburg, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q3 Customer Survey.

Joyce Bottorf of Petersburg, NE receives her $100 Visa gift card for completing the Great Plains Communications Q3 Customer Survey.

We always want to hear unbiased feedback, so it doesn’t matter how someone rates us, it just matters that they complete the survey. Every customer will be reached within a calendar year, so be on the lookout for your chance to win a great prize!

Supporting Local Veterans With Operation Homefront

In our previous social campaign, Great Plains Communications worked to raise awareness for the organization Operation Homefront by offering to donate $1 for every “like” we received on our Facebook post. Thanks to an abundance of support, we received 802 likes equaling $802. We want to thank everyone who liked and shared our post to further help us in our goal. To show our appreciation, Great Plains Communications would like to round out our donation to $1,000 to Operation Homefront. With a commitment from the organization, we have been notified that the full $1,000 will be used right here in our great state of Nebraska to help local veterans in need.

Some examples of ways donations are used:

  • Pay the electric bill of a military family
  • Help a warrior transition to civilian life
  • Help keep essential vehicle rolling
  • Pay for critical baby items
  • Help with rent and mortgage payments

Again we would like to thank everyone for their support in spreading awareness for our campaign, and we would like to give an even bigger thank you to the men and women who have and are currently serving our country.

Thanksgiving Recipes 2016

Thanksgiving is only a few days away and your friends and family have asked you to bring a dish. They will have the turkey and pie prepared, but ask you to bring a side dish. Great Plains Communications wants to share a few of our favorite side dish and accompaniments from our cable channel, Food Network.

Cravenous Cranberry Sauce – Tyler Florence

With every great turkey comes a tart and sweet cranberry sauce to pair with the savory flavors of the meat. Don’t bother with the gelatinous canned stuff, and switch it out for fresh cranberries and the citrus surprise of orange.

Sausage Chestnut Stuffing – Giada De Laurentiis

Impress your family and friends with this elevated stuffing recipe. While still getting the cornbread flavor of the boxed stuffing we are all used to, by adding sweet apples, savory sausage and texture through the chunks of chestnut, this dish will leave everyone’s taste buds wanting more.

Sunny’s Creamed Spinach Recipe – Sunny Anderson

Looking for something a little different from the traditional green bean casserole but still love the creamy texture? Try this creamed spinach recipe, which incorporates salty parmesan and convenient frozen spinach with the classic crunchy topping of fried onions.

 

Happy Thanksgiving from Great Plains Communications!

Starz Free Preview

Inside Out, The Good Dinosaur, Outlander, Spartacus, Ash vs Evil Dead, and other top rated movies and shows are what you can expect from Starz. Great Plains Communications is excited to offer a free preview over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend for your family to enjoy! Starting November 23 and running through Sunday November 27, your family will be able to experience exciting new series such as Blunt Talking or a movie classic such as A League of Their Own.

Then if you enjoy having all those movies and original series at your fingertips, we have a deal for you! Sign up for Starz-Encore between November 21 and December 31 and you will be eligible to receive $25 cash back from Starz. All you have to do is send in three months of bills showing you’ve paid for the service and Starz will send the rebate directly to you.

What you get with Starz-Encore service:

Encore

Encore Western

Encore Action

Encore Love

Encore Suspense

Encore Drama

Encore Family

Starz

Starz Edge

Starz Cinema

Starz Comedy

Starz Family

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