Tomahawk High School Graduation Goes Virtual Tonight
Published on 06/05/2020 under News Tomahawk High School seniors will celebrate their education with a unique virtual graduation this evening. Like students across the country, THS seniors had their final semester cut short due to the coronavirus pandemic. They completed their final 2 months through online learning, and now their graduation will follow suit. After briefly considering postponing the ceremony until later in the summer, administrators ultimately decided to hold a virtual ceremony. At last week's school board meeting, principal Ryan Huseby praised the students, particularly the class officers, for their work in adapting and making the event special. Coming up this evening, 97 students will be honored at this evening's commencement. That includes a five way tie for class valedictorian. Those students are: Brynn Beaumier, Jimmy Lee, Travis Phillips, Haley Voermans-Dean and Natalie Zastrow. Rounding out the top 10 students are Aryss Bell, Cody Scholz, Richelle Swan, Jade Wanta and John Lacina. As for the ceremony, it is being hosted on the district's YouTube Channel at 7pm. The format will allow for re-watching. The district also announced that students and families will be provided a copy of the ceremony.
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Oneida, Forest County Announce Additional Covid Cases; Portage County Cases Linked to Party
Published on 06/05/2020 under News The Oneida County Health Department has confirmed another case of Covid-19, the twelfth overall in the county. They said the individual is in their 80's and is currently hospitalized. The individual has no history of travel outside the community and no known contact with anyone who has tested positive. They've found no significant risks of exposure to the general public related to the case. Of the 12 positive cases in Oneida County, 3 people are in isolation, 8 people have recovered and 1 is hospitalized. The health department also reported 188 additional negative tests on Thursday. _____ In Forest County cases of Covid-19 continue to climb. On Thursday, the health department announced 5 additional cases. They are once again linked to the outbreak at the Bay at Nu Roc facility. The county now has 33 confirmed cases. _____ Perhaps serving as a warning, down in Portage County, health officials have associated a number of new cases of Covid-19 to a college graduation party. They have now linked 8 new positive cases to that gathering late last month in Stevens Point. Those who tested positive have been ordered to isolate while others in close contact are in quarantine. They continue to follow up on the outbreak.
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Covid-19 Testing Event Scheduled in Merrill Next Week
Published on 06/05/2020 under News A National Guard Covid-19 testing event is coming to Lincoln County next week.The Health Department announced that drive-thru service next Thursday, June 11 at the Merrill Festival Grounds. The guard members will be performing free nasal swab testing for those with current symptoms. Those being tested are required to isolate until the test results are returned. This typically takes 3-5 days. The Health Department says the purpose is two fold. The clinics provide communities with mass testing and also give health officials a better insight into how widespread Covid-19 is in the area. We have Lincoln County Health Director Shelley Hersil scheduled to appear on our morning show Tuesday morning. (Photo provided by Wisconsin National Guard: Guard members conducting drive thru testing for the Coronavirus at a testing event in Minocqua last month.)
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DNR Offering Free Fun Weekend
Published on 06/05/2020 under News The DNR is encouraging people to head outdoors this weekend by waiving passes and fees. The first weekend in June has been designated as Free Fun Weekend. For eight years now, the DNR eliminates park admission fees, fishing licenses and trail pass requirements. Those taking advantage are encouraged to follow safety practices such as wearing a life jacket when on the water, wearing a helmet and eye protection on ATV's and sober operation of recreational vehicles. They also encourage people to continue following guidelines to avoid the spread of coronavirus. Because of the Coronavirus, they're not offering loan equipment as they usually do. They do remind anglers that all other fishing rules still apply including bag limits. _____ Speaking of the DNR, they also announced yesterday that they will re-open state campgrounds on Wednesday June 10. They are taking a number of precautions at the campgrounds due to the coronavirus.
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Newest Peregrine Falcons Banded; Named Kringle and Tundra
Published on 06/05/2020 under News Kringle and Tundra are the newest members of the Wausau area peregrine falcon family. All spring, we've monitored the two chicks hatched at the Wisconsin Public Service nesting box located at the Weston Power Plant. This week, the birds were named and banded. Kringle and Tundra were among 8 Wisconsin-based names selected via online vote. The other names will be bestowed upon the 6 other chicks hatched around the state at their facilities. As for the banding, two small metal clips are attached to the birds' legs, allowing people to identify them in the wild. A spokesman says the chicks will remain in the nest and featured on their webcams for a few more weeks. Currently resemble balls of white fluff, they'll soon grow into some of the fastest animals on the planet. Peregrine falcons have be recorded diving at more than 200 miles per hour. Since the mid-90s, more than 400 peregrine falcons have been hatched from WPS and WE Energies nesting boxes including 36 in Weston. They were on the endangered species list in Wisconsin as recently as the 1990's. (Photo provided by Wisconsin Public Service of peregrine falcon chicks Kringle (M) and Tundra (F) hatched at the Weston Power Plant)
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Eagle River Chamber Cancels Musky Open, Up North Beerfest
Published on 06/05/2020 under News One day after organizers made the decision to cancel the Eagle River 4th of July activities, two other popular summer events have been postponed until next year. Yesterday, the Eagle River Chamber and the Musky Clubs Alliance of Wisconsin made the decision to cancel this year's National Championship Musky Open, held in August. Last year, a record 1,366 anglers participated in the tournament. The Chamber also decided to cancel this month's Up North Beerfest. Both events are already scheduled to resume next summer.
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Vehicle/Deer Collisions on Rise in Spring
Published on 06/04/2020 under News With new fawns and extended daylight, deer activity is picking up. That means drivers need to be extra vigilant. While vehicle/deer crashes are typically highest in the fall, those numbers also spike in June. According to the Department of Transportation, drivers reported more than 18,000 collisions with deer last year. That resulted in 555 injuries and 9 deaths. Of those 9 deaths, 6 involved motorcyclists. Here in Lincoln County, there were 227 deer-involved crashes reported last year. Oneida County reported a nearly identical 226 deer-involved crashes. Just south in Marathon County, the numbers were nearly doubled. The DoT also offered some tips.•First and foremost, slowdown, eliminate distractions, and were your seatbelt. •If you see one deer crossing, anticipate more following. They recommend a long blast of the horn may scare the animal away. •If the collision is unavoidable, brake firmly and stay in your lane. Avoid swerving your car, which can lead to a more serious crash. The one exception is motorcycles, which they do recommend swerving while attempting to stay in your lane. •If you strike a deer, get off to the side of the road and call law enforcement. It's safest to remain inside your vehicle until help arrives. •Never attempt to move an injured deer. As we told you earlier this week, there were 14 vehicle-deer crashes in Lincoln County last week, the highest total of the year. One of those collisions resulted in a two vehicle accident after the driver lost control of the vehicle.
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Langlade, Forest County Announce Additional Covid-19 Cases
Published on 06/04/2020 under News Ahead of a public testing event in Langlade County, officials announced another case of Covid-19 yesterday. The Health Department confirmed the 4th positive test overall for the county. Health Officer Meghan Williams says the patient is currently at home in isolation and their department is communicating with the individual. Williams noted that none of the four people with positive tests in the county have had contact with each other. She says now is not the time to become complacent. As for the National Guard testing events, they will be Thursday and Friday from 10am until 6pm at the Langlade County Multi-Purpose Building. They are offering to tests to those who have shown symptoms of Covid-19. People tested at these clinics are asked to isolate until results are returned, typically in 3-5 days. Elsewhere in the Northwoods, Forest County reported one additional positive test on Wednesday. The case is related to the outbreak at the Bay at Nu-Roc facility in Laona. One of the last counties in the state to record a positive test, Forest County now has 29 positive cases. Five people have recovered, two have died; the rest remain in isolation. No other new cases were reported in the Northwoods on Wednesday.
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Eagle River Cancels 4th of July Events; Rhinelander Fireworks Go On
Published on 06/04/2020 under News Now one month out, the Coronavirus is throwing a wrench in Northwoods 4th of July celebrations. The latest announcement came from Eagle River. Organizers of their 4th festivities including their annual parade, fireworks, and 'Party in the Street' have postponed until next year. The organizers said they considered a variety of options including a new setup and layout. Ultimately they decided that the parade and Party in the Street couldn't be held in a manner safe enough to protect everyone from the potential spread of the Coronavirus. While they felt they could have achieved social distancing for the fireworks, funding played a role in its postponement. Due to the financial impacts of Covid-19, they had fewer sponsors to help cover the costs. Meanwhile in Rhinelander, their fireworks show will go on. City officials had already canceled this year's parade. Yesterday, they announced they will host a fireworks show on Saturday, July 4. That's one day later than originally scheduled. Last month, the Tomahawk Powwow Days celebration was canceled for the year.
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Power Pac Completes Acquisition of Erv's in Tomahawk
Published on 06/04/2020 under News Power Pac Inc., a family run dealership from Marshfield has finalized the acquisition of Erv's Sales and Service in Tomahawk. For more than a half century and two generations, the Van Strydonk family has operated Erv's on Tomahawk's Northside. Josh and Mandy Witt, with two years of ownership of Power Pac hope to continue that legacy. Josh Witt said via news release, "Nancy and Alan, with their families and team, have built an extremely successful and respected business that we look forward to building upon." Mandy Witt said a second location was always in their plans and Erv's checked all the boxes including trail access, a tourism base, and the established service and storage business. And the original owners won't be strangers. To help ensure the transition is as smooth as possible for customers and the team, both Alan Van Strydonk and Nancy Swan have agreed to consult through the summer and potentially beyond. Swan called the decision to sell "difficult." She says they felt at ease knowing the Witts will carry on the same business reputation. Erv's has provided outdoor recreational equipment to the Tomahawk area since 1969. Power Pac was established in Marshfield in 1963, and was purchased by the Witt's in 2018. Additional information is available on the Power Pac website.
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Tomahawk Students Place 3rd in Solar Olympics
Published on 06/04/2020 under News Last week students from across Northern Wisconsin and Fox Valley participated in the Wisconsin Public Service Solar Olympics. Based on the cumulative scores, the team from Tomahawk High School earned a bronze medal by placing third in the overall competition. Each spring, the Solar Olympics has allowed the students to showcase their knowledge of solar energy in a variety of categories such as building solar cars to creating a solar advertising campaign. With schools closed this year, the students had to adapt and compete virtually. Under those circumstances, just 11 schools had students participating. In addition to Tomahawk students; Lakeland Union and Rhinelander also competed. Green Bay Southwest dominated, winning five of the nine events and claiming another overall title. The Solar Olympics were established in 1997 to educate and inspire students in hands-on solar and renewable energy curriculum. It's available to participating schools within the WPS footprint.
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Tomahawk School District Hopes to Finalize 20-21 plans by July 31
Published on 06/04/2020 under News As the Tomahawk school year comes to a close, district officials are still discussing plans for the fall. Among topics in a district-wide letter sent last week, Administrator Terry Reynolds wrote, "I understand that there will be many questions/concerns about what school will look like when students are allowed to return to school." He says they will be exploring multiple plans/options for reopening in the fall based on the best information available at the time, with the health and welfare of students, staff and the community their priority. That includes communications with health officials, liability insurance and school attorneys. Reynolds says their goal is to have final plans and options completed by July 31, allowing time for everyone to prepare. Because of the ever changing nature of the pandemic he did ask for understanding in any changes made to the plans. The current school year came to a close on Tuesday. The THS graduation will be held tomorrow, virtually.
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Fall Ride Planning Continues; MDA Cancels SARA Park Events
Published on 06/03/2020 under News Groups are still moving forward with the Tomahawk Fall Ride after one of the major organizers decided to postpone their portion of the event. Yesterday, the Muscular Dystrophy Association announced they were canceling their portion of Fall Ride events which are hosted at SARA Park. The decision came the same day those permits were to appear on the Tomahawk City Council agenda. MDA Executive Director Murphy Maes says, "With the uncertainty of what is to come with COVID-19 we simply cannot risk the responsibility of any illnesses for our guests, customers and MDA clients. This was not an easy decision to come to, however we feel that we cannot execute this historic event to the standards we would like." As Fall Ride has grown and evolved over the years other activities and organizers have joined into celebration. That includes Tomahawk Main Street which is taking over the downtown events this year including the street dance. That application was approved by the City Council earlier this year. During her WJJQ forum visit on Wednesday, Main Street Director Aimee Dickrell confirmed that they are still planning their festivities and even added another. MDA typically organized the Friday night Thunder Parade. After they pulled out, Tomahawk Main Street took over the application with city. Ahead of the vote on the Thunder Parade, the Council did discuss the Fall Ride event. Alderman Will Garske anticipated Fall Ride visitors will be coming to the Northwoods this fall to attend various celebrations run by private entities. They touched on vendors needing to follow health department guidelines. Several aldermen proposed postponing the vote until next month. In the end, the Council voted 6-3 to approve the Thunder Parade application with Tomahawk Main Street.
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Oneida County Reports 11th Covid-19 Case
Published on 06/03/2020 under News The Oneida County Health Department has confirmed another case of Covid-19, the eleventh overall for the county. The announcement says the individual who tested positive is in their 20's and is currently in isolation. While a majority of Northwoods cases have involved older patients, this is the second consecutive day we have reported a person in their 20's has tested positive following a case Monday in Vilas County. The Oneida County Health Department says the person had no known contact with anyone who has tested positive or a history of recent travel. They do not believe there has been significant exposure risk to the public. In yesterday's update, the Health Department also reported more than 200 additional negative tests. Three people are currently in isolation while another is hospitalized. The other seven positive tests have been cleared. Here in Lincoln County the Health Department reports no new positive tests and 35 negative tests.
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#BeattheHeat on Heat Awareness Day
Published on 06/03/2020 under News Coincidentally after our warmest day of the year, safety officials are reminding residents to "beat the heat" this summer. Today is Heat Awareness Day. According to the state health department, five people died in Wisconsin last year due to heat related causes. Hundreds of people fall ill or are hospitalized due to the heat each year, as well. Darrell L. Williams, Wisconsin Emergency Management administrator says, "That's why it is so important for everyone to be able to recognize the signs of heat-related illness and what they can do to remain safe when temperatures climb." One of the most dangerous places is in a parked vehicle. Experts say in the sun on an 80 degree day, intertior temperatures can climb by 20 degrees in just 10 minutes. That's why it is never safe to leave children or pets in a parked vehicle, even if the window is cracked. A few other tips provided by Oneida County Emergency Management:•Avoid the hottest parts of the day and take frequent breaks when exerting in hot weather. •Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. •Stay informed for local weather forecasts. •Check on vulnerable friends, relatives and neighbors when the temperatures spike.
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