If you can have fun and raise money for a worthy cause at the same time, it makes for a successful fundraiser. Since 1998, the Cattlemen’s Ball of Nebraska has been accomplishing these goals, raising nearly $15 million to support cancer research.
In fact, 90% of the proceeds collected annually are given directly to the Fred and Pamela Buffett Cancer Center in Omaha, used specifically for cutting-edge cancer research. The remaining 10% of funds are returned to local communities to benefit area health organizations and initiatives.
This year, the Cattlemen’s Ball will be at the Scott and Patricia Mueller farm in Columbus, Neb. The Muellers are big into beef — and are busy with a cow-calf operation, a feedlot, crops, feed sales, commodity trading, and a process verified program, Samson LLC. Their two sons, Jordan and Brandon, also have been involved in planning for this year’s ball.
Activities for the ball kick off June 4 with a golf tournament at Elks Country Club. A silent auction takes place later in the afternoon, into the evening, along with health and wellness screenings, a general store and a history tent. There is a Trail Boss reception, a wine and art tent, and a live auction in the evening Friday, capped off with a concert by Tracy Byrd.
Saturday’s activities on June 5 kick off with the Nebraska Rawhide Run at Lake North. There is a Trail Boss champagne brunch in the morning, along with the opening of a silent auction. Saturday’s full lineup includes a wine tasting, Nebraska Bush Pullers, a Trail Boss luncheon, a style show, a beef experience, and a farm and ranch auction, capped off with a prime rib dinner, live auction, truck raffle giveaway and an evening program. Eastin Corbin takes the stage for his concert that evening, followed by Side Step Band.
COVID-19 canceled the 2020 Cattlemen’s Ball, but in 2019, it last was hosted by Wayne and Chris Krausnick at Wauneta, and the event raised a total of $673,739.
Over the years, the ball has been hosted by families in Hebron, Anselmo, Princeton, Lynch, Harrisburg, Sutherland, McCool Junction, West Point, Kearney, Doniphan, Albion, Lodgepole, Milford, Wisner, Brady, Ashland, Valparaiso, Valentine, Arthur and Lexington, in addition to the 1998 inaugural event at Ainsworth and the 2019 event at Wauneta.