ACE presents 2024 Project of the Year Awards

ACE (Public Alliance for Community Energy), the community-owned natural gas supplier, presented Project of the Year awards to three of its member communities at the NMPP Energy Annual Conference March 20 in Lincoln, Neb.

Through its revenue return program, ACE returns funds to its 75 Nebraska member communities. These funds are used by each community for various community betterment projects. Earlier this year, the ACE Board of Directors approved returning $350,000 to its Nebraska member communities. Since forming in 1998, ACE has returned nearly $4 million to its Nebraska member communities.

Communities submitted project nominations and winners were determined through voting on ACE’s Facebook page. The awards were presented in three community population categories. The following projects were awarded a plaque and $200 to be used toward future community betterment projects:

City of Long Pine Standpipe Water Tank Renovation (Pop. under 500)

In 2023 the City’s 211,000-gallon standpipe water tank was in need of repairs and a new look. After receiving feedback from residents on a new logo design, the City worked with a contractor to modernize the look into a proud symbol of the community. The standpipe tank, originally built in 1914, supplies all 305 Long Pine residents with their water needs.

City of Chappell Thompson Park Upgrades (Pop. 500-1,000)

The City used its ACE funds to help with upgrades to Thompson Park. Upgrades completed in the Fall of 2023 included a new concrete sidewalk around the playground and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) parking spot, several new benches and trash receptacles and a safe ground cover for the playground area.

City of Ogallala Collister Park Unity Project (Pop. more than 1,000)

The City used its ACE funds to make improvements at Collister Park as part of the park’s Unity Project – a collaborative effort to renovate the park by the City, the Ogallala Rotary Club, Optimist Club, Elks Club and Youth Committee. The overall project included a new playground, shade structure and splash pad. The project was made possible through the teamwork and support of local businesses, groups and organizations.


Nebraska communities formed ACE to provide competitively priced natural gas while retaining local control and keeping more revenue in Nebraska’s ACE member communities. The 2024 Nebraska Choice Gas program selection period will run from April 4-24.

The Voice of Choice

“ACE has returned more than $74,000 to the City of Neligh through its revenue return program. We’ve always used our ACE funds for community improvement projects such as a county-wide alert system, playground equipment and other park improvements.”
Dale Wilkinson
Neligh, Neb.
Two girls on playground swings
"On top of providing revenue back to our City ACE also offers local groups the opportunity to participate in community clean-up events, which benefits our community and provides funds for local groups."
Tricia Allen
City Clerk, Blue Hill, Neb.
Child playing
"The distribution of ACE funds back to the Gordon community have assisted with a skate park, needed repairs at the community swimming pool and equipment for our police department."
Glen Spaugh
City Manager, Gordon, Neb.
Kids on bikes giving thumbs up
“Our community has used funds from ACE’s revenue return program for many projects, including assisting with umpire fees for the summer ball program, general park improvements, signage for Mill Race Park and Blue Bird Trail, and upgrading the camper sites at Mill Race Park.”
Shelly Wieneke
Deputy Clerk, Atkinson, Neb.
baseball scoreboard