More photos: 2013 OWH Year in Pictures – Alyssa Schukar
“This may be a small town, but it’s got a big rodeo, and it’s got a really big heart,” 2013 Miss Burwell Rodeo Olivia Hunsperger said. In its 92nd year, the rodeo continues strong and has served as an economic stronghold for an otherwise sparsely inhabited town. Members of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association hold their hats as Hunsperger passes by during the opening ceremonies on July 27, 2013. ALYSSA SCHUKAR/THE WORLD-HERALD
I celebrated my fifth year at the World-Herald in 2013, and as I’ve learned to expect, this year has been nothing like the ones before. Each year brings new sources of inspiration, meaningful relationships and a clearer understanding of our community in Omaha and the region. Among the highlights were my months spent documenting the final semester at Assumption-Guadalupe School, where 95 percent of students speak Spanish at home.
With her family looking on, eighth-grader Anahi Ruiz, one of 15 members of Assumption-Guadalupe School’s last graduating class, hugs teacher Bob Humpal outside the South Omaha school on May 16, 2013. “Let me give you some love,” Ruiz said as she surprised her teacher with the embrace. Humpal agreed to teach eighth grade knowing that it would be only a yearlong position. “When I got the feel of this place, I realized it’s a place I belong. Even if it’s just one year, when I leave here, I am going to be a better teacher and a better person because of this community,” Humpal said. ALYSSA SCHUKAR/THE WORLD-HERALD
And though the following picture always garners a sideways glance, I loved getting to know the players on Omaha’s Legends Football League (formerly the Lingerie Football League) team in its inaugural season. These women reminded me that you can’t understand someone without knowing her story. Like quarterback Linsey Noble said, “you can’t really judge people by the cover, by the book or the lingerie.”
Omaha Heart’s Ashley Lambrecht, center, dances with teammates including, from left, SarahJane Thompson, Linsey Noble, Morgan Anderson, Lindsay Burnham, Shawnte’ Bunting and Kelsey Lane, before the team’s opening game against the Atlanta Steam in Gwinnett, Ga., on April 13, 2013. The Heart lost 42-6. “I love showing people that we’re real athletes. A lot of people doubt. … It makes me so mad when they say, ‘Is it powder puff? Is it flag?’ I’m just like, No! If you’ve seen it, then you’d know that we actually tackle. You’ve seen that it’s not just models or pretty girls just trying to play football. It’s pretty girls that have careers, that are moms that can actually play football and are good at it,” Bunting said. ALYSSA SCHUKAR/THE WORLD-HERALD
Photographers are total nerds for light. When I learned that I’d cover the World-Herald fireworks show from outside of TD Ameritrade Park, I was ecstatic. I arrived well before the fireworks and chased the interesting light, characters and slices of Americana.
With American flag in hand, Ashley Henry, 10, of Council Bluffs rests in a spot of light as her siblings Caitlin Henry, 6, and Jacob Henry, 3, wrestle at right at Council Bluffs’ Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park before the 29th annual World-Herald fireworks display lights up the sky over TD Ameritrade Park on July 3, 2013. The 22-minute show featured 6,000 pounds of explosives and more than 30,000 shells. ALYSSA SCHUKAR/THE WORLD-HERALD
My collection of images this year also is marked by several portraits. I love to study faces, and the joy of athletic success shines through in Austin Ruskamp’s bloody smile below.
Freeman High School’s second-ranked Austin Ruskamp bares bloody teeth after pinning Anselmo-Merna senior Jake Wells, ranked No. 1 at 160 pounds, in a Class D state quarterfinal match. ALYSSA SCHUKAR/THE WORLD-HERALD
Thanks for looking. Coming soon: the best photos of 2013 from other World-Herald photographers.