Cattlemen's Ball nets more than $1.4 million in proceeds

Fundraising total is 2nd highest in ball's 15-year history

McCool Junction, NE – The 2012 Cattlemen’s Ball of Nebraska in McCool Junction raised more than $1.4 million – the second highest total in the ball’s 15-year history of providing support to the Eppley Cancer Center at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

This marks the third straight year the Cattlemen’s Ball has topped the $1 million mark. The all-time high was $1.49 million raised at the 2011 ball in West Point. In 2010, the ball held in Kearney raised $1,003,000.

As in past years, 90 percent of the proceeds go toward cancer research at the UNMC Eppley Cancer Center with the remaining 10 percent going toward local organizations. This year’s breakdown was $1,244,270 to the UNMC Eppley Cancer Center and $141,030 distributed locally to 21 different organizations. In addition, $5,000 was raised for scholarships at the UNMC College of Nursing.

The proceeds were announced Tuesday evening at the Stone Creek Event Center near McCool Junction. Ken Cowan, M.D., Ph.D., director of the UNMC Eppley Cancer Center, was in McCool Junction for the announcement. Since the ball’s inception in 1998, more than $7.61 million has been raised.

“I continue to sound like a broken record,” Dr. Cowan said. “It seems like every year the Cattlemen’s Ball does something remarkable. This year’s $1.4 million is amazing. I know it represents a ton of work by the entire community of McCool Junction as well as many other people in York County.

“We are absolutely thrilled with what has happened to the Cattlemen’s Ball. It has evolved into probably the biggest fundraising event for the entire state. We are honored to be associated with it.”

This year’s event was hosted by the Allen and Shelly Clark family of McCool Junction and held at the Stone Creek Event Center. Co-chairs of this year’s ball were Paul and Cheri Underwood and Jim and Kathy Matzner of McCool Junction. Ivan Rush of Scottsbluff served as chairman of the Statewide Advisory Board.

“This was a total team effort involving McCool Junction and numerous surrounding communities,” said Shelly Clark. “We had the help of more than 500 volunteers and 45 committees, and more than 4,000 attended the ball. We are delighted to make such a generous donation to support the outstanding cancer research being done at the Eppley Cancer Center. But, it’s also rewarding to see many local organizations benefit as well.”

The 2013 Cattlemen’s Ball will be June 7-8 at the Hanging H Ranch near Sutherland, Neb. Hosts are the Neal Hansen family and the Hanging H Ranch and Ralph and Beverly Holzfaster and      family. Co-chairs are Jon Holzfaster and Tim and Deb Holzfaster.

Here’s a listing of local organizations which will receive funding this year:

Emmanuel-Faith Lutheran School

Friend FFA

McCool Junction FFA/McCool School

Centennial FFA

Bradshaw Fire Department

Exeter Volunteer Fire Department

Fairmont Fire Department

Friend Fire & Rescue


Henderson Fire and Rescue

McCool Junction Fire District

York Fire Department

York County Mutual Aid District

Fairview Manor

Fillmore County Hospital

4 Corners Health

Henderson area health care

Home Care Plus, Inc.

York General Health Care Service

York Medical Clinic

City of York inclusive with above

McCool Community Improvement Foundation


Here’s a breakdown of money raised at the past 15 Cattlemen's Balls:

1998 - Ainsworth -- $95,000

1999 - Lexington -- $140,000

2000 - Ogallala -- $104,000

2001 - Valentine -- $133,000

2002 - Valparaiso -- $207,000

2003 - Ashland -- $33,000

2004 - Brady -- $174,000

2005 - Wisner -- $595,000

2006 - Milford -- $563,250

2007 - Lodgepole -- $480,000

2008 - Albion -- $697,000

2009 - Doniphan -- $488,000

2010 - Kearney -- $1,003,000

2011 - West Point -- $1,490,000

2012 – McCool Junction - $1,410,300

Total - $7.61 million

The Cattlemen’s Ball of Nebraska, Inc. is established to promote beef in a healthy diet, to showcase rural Nebraska and to raise money for health care research. For more information, visit www.cattlemensball.com.

The UNMC Eppley Cancer Center is a National Cancer Institute (NCI) designated cancer center -- a distinction held by only 64 centers in the country. The UNMC Eppley Cancer Center is the only NCI-designated center in the state of Nebraska. The UNMC Eppley Cancer Center is also one of the 13 founding members of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), an alliance of the world’s leading cancer centers. This recognition means the most current and innovative treatment options are available to Cancer Center patients through the integration of cutting-edge research into state-of-the-art care. Cancer Center physicians and scientists work together to quickly translate discoveries made in the laboratory into innovative treatments for the patient.

Through world-class research and patient care, UNMC generates breakthroughs that make life better for people throughout Nebraska and beyond. Its education programs train more health professionals than any other institution in the state. Learn more at unmc.edu.



Ann Bruntz
University of Nebraska Foundation
(402) 458-1176
(402) 366-6605

Tom O'Connor
UNMC Public Relations
(402) 559-4690 (office)
(402) 650-7063 (cell)