BROKEN BOW—The continued growth in the Broken Bow community was evident on Thursday, August 20 as the Chamber of Commerce and Nebraska Lieutenant Governor Mike Foley helped celebrate local businesses as well as a preschool.
Little Lights Preschool is a faith-based preschool in Broken Bow that opened in the fall of 2018 inside the Evangelical Free Church Challenge Center building. Little Lights joined the chamber this year and recently held a ribbon cutting with special guests including the preschool teachers, board members, former Senator Jim Jones on behalf of the Eighmy Foundation, the Lt. Governor, the Ellison family, preschool families, and many others.
Pastor of the E-Free Church Tim Peterson said many individuals began praying years ago about how the building could be used. Preschool teacher Tess Jones had hoped to start a Christian preschool and together with the help of the Evangelical Free Church, the Broken Bow Berean Bible Church, and several volunteers that vision became a reality.
“We want to educate our kids well and we want to teach them about the gospel,” Pastor Peterson said.
During the presentation on August 20, Pastor Peterson said the preschool had zero budget the first year and worked on prayer, hope, and trust that God would open the doors for a faith-based preschool in Broken Bow.
Both churches work together in providing funding and scholarships for the preschool which saw 11 kids the first year, 17 last year, and currently has about 28 students enrolled for this year.
Pastor Peterson recognized, in loving memory, Virginia “Ginny” Ellison whose funeral memorials greatly helped the preschool begin two years ago.
“Her memorial was very helpful—in fact it was essential—in getting Little Lights Preschool off the ground and we’ll always remember that gift and the love that Ginny poured into so many kids and so many families and we wanted to honor her memory,” Peterson said.
Ginny’s husband J.D. told KCNI/KBBN that his wife loved children and ran an in-home daycare for more than 35 years. Her son Jon said it means a lot to see donations from her funeral memorial benefit local kids.
Lt. Governor Mike Foley spoke a few words during the presentation and said he believes in the importance of early childhood education and kids being rooted in the gospel.
“It’s a rare day when I get to do a ribbon cutting and grand opening for a new preschool. Because as we learn more and more about education we start to understand the incredible importance of high quality early childhood educational experiences but this one’s special. This one’s very special because not only are these kids in a great nurturing environment where they’re getting introduced to the concept of education, the bonus is they get the introduction to the gospel of Jesus Christ as well,” Lt. Governor Foley said.
Senator Jim Jones said his grandson’s wife—Tess Jones—has been instrumental in beginning Little Lights and said on behalf of the Eighmy Foundation that it was an honor to help get the building licensed appropriately because some of the foundation’s goals are helping youth and education.
Little Lights teachers include Tess Jones, Jessica Littlejohn, and Alli Nichols with board members Kory and Danielle Ostrand, Marty and Karen Bredthauer, Dan Anderson, James and Stefanie Clang, Mary Pirnie, and Deb Hostick.