Nebraska will celebrate 150 years of statehood on Wednesday, March 1, 2017 with a series of events at the Nebraska State Capitol and the Nebraska History Museum.  All events are free and open to the public.

“This week, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to celebrate the work of generations of Nebraskans in every community across our state,” said Governor Pete Ricketts.  “Their persistence and hard work are what have made Nebraska the Good Life for 150 years.  My wife Susanne, along with a group of other dedicated Nebraskans, have been working hard planning events and initiatives to help the entire state celebrate the sesquicentennial birthday throughout the year. I urge Nebraskans to check out the celebration plans by visiting www.ne150.org and to join the celebration this week!”

“As we celebrate this historic occasion, it’s only appropriate that we take a few moments to reflect on the accomplishments of the brave, innovative explorers who came before us,” said First Lady Susanne Shore.  “In 150 years, we have gone from sod houses to skyscrapers, from pioneers to groundbreaking innovation and from feeding a few to feeding the world.  We have so much of which we can be proud.  I hope all Nebraskans will join the Governor and me in this yearlong celebration and commemoration of our heritage.”

Below is a schedule of events for March 1.  Times are approximate.  Seating at the State Capitol is open and limited.  Early arrival is recommended.  Overflow seating will be available in the Rotunda and Warner Chamber for the Official Ceremony at 2 p.m., which will be live streamed on NET2 and at netnebraska.org.

9:30-10:15 a.m.  
Event: U. S. Postal Service Nebraska Statehood Forever® Stamp First-Day-of-Issue Dedication Ceremony
Location: Nebraska State Capitol (Rotunda – Second Floor), 1445 K Street, Lincoln

Participants include Governor Pete Ricketts, First Lady Susanne Shore, Nebraska Sesquicentennial Commission Chairperson Dr. Sara Crook, Vice President of Information Technology for the U.S. Postal Service Jeffrey Johnson, Photographer Michael Forsberg.  Followers of the U.S. Postal Service’s Facebook page can view streaming video of the event at facebook.com/USPS.

10:30 a.m.-1:15 p.m.
Event: Actor Portrayals of Willa Cather, Chief Standing Bear & William “Buffalo Bill” Cody & Special Musical Performances by Nebraska Students
Location: Nebraska State Capitol (Rotunda – Second Floor), 1445 K Street, Lincoln

    10:30 a.m. – Willa Cather portrayal by Betty Jean Steinshouer
    11:10 a.m. – Performance by Lincoln's Scott Middle School Select Choir, Directed by Paul Eschliman
    11:25 a.m. – Chief Standing Bear portrayal by Taylor Keen
    12:05 p.m. – Performance by the Waverly High School Singers, Directed by Rachel Kornfield
    12:20 p.m. – Buffalo Bill Cody portrayal by Terry Lane
    1 p.m. – Performance by the Millard North High School Symphony Chamber Orchestra, Directed by Debbie Martinez

1:15 p.m.
Event: Delivery of the Original Statehood Proclamation to Governor Pete Ricketts by the National Pony Express Association – Nebraska Division
Location: Nebraska State Capitol (West Side – Lincoln Statue), 1445 K Street, Lincoln

2 to 3 p.m.
Event: Official Statehood Day Ceremony
Location: Nebraska State Capitol (George W. Norris Legislative Chamber), 1445 K Street, Lincoln

The ceremony will feature former “The Voice” finalist and Grand Island native Hannah Huston singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” and “America The Beautiful.” Governor Pete Ricketts, Nebraska Supreme Court Chief Justice Mike Heavican, Secretary of State John Gale, and Speaker of the Legislature Jim Scheer are scheduled to speak. Additionally, Lincoln’s Everett Elementary Chorus, comprised of 18 third through fifth grade students, will lead a statewide sing-along of “Happy Birthday Nebraska” at approximately 2:20 p.m. under the direction of Nebraska Music Teacher of the Year Sue Springer.

6 to 8 p.m.
Event: “Legacy of Nebraska” Exhibit Grand Opening
Location: Nebraska History Museum ~ 131 Centennial Mall North

A breathtaking exhibit of original oil paintings featuring significant historic locations and aesthetic scenes relevant to each of Nebraska’s 93 counties, illustrating the state’s 150-year history.  The exhibit is the culmination of a multi-year project by award-winning artist Todd Williams, a Central City native, whose work as been featured in some of the most renowned galleries in the United States.

Additional information about the Nebraska150 Celebration is available at www.ne150.org on Facebook at facebook.com/nebraska150 and Twitter @ne150.