Latest Machickanee Players show is ‘Insane’

Russ Johnson and Jenni Fabry rehearse for the February opening of “Insane With Power.” (Contributed photo)

The Machickanee Players’ current production, Scott Haan’s “Insane with Power,” is scheduled for the second and third weekends in February.

Described as a family friendly comedy, the play takes place in the visitation room of a local mental health institution where all the residents believe they are super heroes, complete with various “super” powers. The laughs begin when Speed Demon “runs” around the room backward, Dim Bulb relates how his powers came into being, Kevin sees other people in the room and Mental blurts out whatever random thoughts enter her head.

The comedy will be presented Feb. 9-11 and 16-18 at the Park Avenue Playhouse, 408 Park Ave., Oconto. The cast includes Chris Bellow, Kyle Patrick, Russ Johnson, Travis Rysewyk, Jenni Fabry and Mariah Engeldinger.


Rolling lefse on historical society agenda

Paula Huff and Karl Ballestad will present a hands-on program with a Norwegian theme for Thursday’s Speaker Series event sponsored by the Oconto County Historical Society. The presentation, ”Get Rolling With Paula and Karl,” is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. in the meeting room at the Beyer Home and Carriage Museum, 917 Park Ave., Oconto.

The two presenters plan to demonstrate how to make a traditional Norwegian flatbread called lefse, which is made from potatoes, flour, butter and salt and rolled very thin to produce a tender, delicious Norwegian staple.

The lefse-making process, brought to America by Norwegian immigrants, involves rolling pins, lefse sticks, and griddles.

Individuals attending the program will have the opportunity, if they wish, to roll their own lefse and grill it or offer their support to others as they try their hand at lefse production. Samples will be available to enjoy.


Abrams theater to hold auditions for ‘Singin’ in the Rain’

Tap dancers, singers, and performers are invited to open auditions for the Abrams Spotlight Productions Inc. spring show, “Singin’ in the Rain.”

Auditions will be held 6-8 p.m. Jan. 2-3, at the Byng Community Theater, 5852 Maple Ave., Abrams.

“Singin’ in the Rain” has all the makings of a Tinseltown tabloid headline — the starlet, the leading man and a love affair that could change lives and make or break careers. The stage version includes all of the classic song and dance numbers from the film. For this reason, tap dancers are strongly encouraged to audition.

The show calls for various roles, both male and female, 13 years or older. Individuals who audition should prepare a 2-minute selection of a song to sing. The song should not be from “Singin’ in the Rain.”

A group choreography audition will take place also, so performers are encouraged to wear comfortable clothes and bring their tap shoes if they own a pair.


Gillett goes on a Holiday Wreath Hunt

The display case at the Gillett Public Library is full of prizes from area businesses to be won in the 12th annual Holiday Wreath Hunt. (Contributed photo)

This is the 12th year that a Holiday Wreath Hunt has taken place in Gillett, and this annual event is coordinated by the Gillett Public Library. It’s designed for families to have fun together during the holidays as they travel through town in search of answers to questions.

Here’s one of the questions you’ll be asked to answer: “The unique wreath at the Gillett Historical Museum is made from an old railroad sign. Gillett was a main hub years ago; several trains came through town every day, including the Polar Express! Their wreath announces the population of Gillett back in 1905 … How many lived here then?”

There are 29 Gillett businesses participating in the hunt this year, and many have donated prizes, which are on display at the library. Hard copies of the wreath hunt are available at the library, and it can also be downloaded from the library’s website. The completed hunts need to be turned into the Gillett library by Tuesday, Jan. 2.


Quilters tie for best in show

Two Shawano quilters tied for Best of Show at the Decades of Fiber Arts event held Dec. 2 in Gillett.

Mary Hoppe’s quilt, called Crazy Family, is designed from a traditional crazy quilt pattern with the focal point of each square being reproductions of favorite family photos. This 2017 brown quilt, enhanced with dozens of vintage gold pins, was longarm quilted by Diane Napier of Mountain.

Sharon Krueger’s quilt was created using the Stack and Whack method of piecing material so that the finished project has the look of a kaleidoscope. This bright quilt has appliquéd koi on it and was also longarm quilted by Napier.


Vets 4 Vets seeks veterans for Christmas 'Break-Ins'

Vets 4 Vets of Northeast Wisconsin is looking for veterans who might need their holidays brightened in the group’s annual Christmas “Break-In” program.

The holidays can be difficult, either financially or emotionally, for veterans — especially those suffering from depression, readjustment disorders or PTSD. Anyone who knows of a veteran – individual or with a family – who might be experiencing hard times and could use some help this holiday season can nominate them for the program.

A “break-in” is a planned surprise for the veteran and his or her family, usually done at their home while he or she is away. The nonprofit works with the person who nominated the veteran ahead of time to determine how to best serve each individual situation. Although the organization does its best to serve the needs of the community, not all veterans who are nominated will be selected to be a part of this year’s program.


Morgan Musings: New town hall almost ready for occupancy

The new Morgan Town Hall is impressive in many ways, including its extensive exterior lights. (Photo by Megan Oswald)

Greetings, Morgan! Thank you for taking an interest in your town’s news. If you have news to share, please let me know at

Those Morgan residents who live in County Board Supervisory District 21 have a new county board supervisor. District 21 encompasses a portion of the town of Oconto Falls, as well as that part of Morgan situated north of County Road E and east of County Road C.

Mary Lemmen, longtime county board member and active community member, sadly passed away in October. Tim O’Harrow of the town of Oconto Falls was recently appointed to serve on the county board for the remainder of Lemmen’s term.

The Morgan Town Board had also recommended Morgan town supervisor Leonard Wahl for this position and thanks Leonard for his willingness to offer to serve in this capacity. The population of the area of each town in District 21 was the deciding factor in this appointment.


Hillside Assembly to host 10-31 Community Party

Hillside Assembly in Gillett is inviting families to one of the area’s biggest fall festivals, the 10-31 Community Party, from 6-7:15 p.m. Tuesday at Gillett Elementary School, 208 W. Main St., Gillett.

The night features all kinds of seasonal games, such as bobbing for apples, a spider ring toss and pin the face on the pumpkin, to name a few. T&T DJ Service will be providing music.

Attendees are invited to bring their already-carved pumpkins (one per child) to put on display and enter for prizes such as Best in Show, Most Creative and Cutest designs. Candy will be handed out from 6-7 p.m. followed by a costume parade.

There will also be prizes for the Best in Show, Most Creative and Cutest design in costumes. This is a family-friendly event, so please no costumes with blood or gore.


Concert marks NEW Concert Band's 25th year

Members of the Northeastern Wisconsin Concert Band rehearse in the band room at Coleman High School in preparation for its fall concert. (Contributed photo)

The 25th season of the Northeastern Wisconsin Concert Band will be commemorated at its fall concert, scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Oct. 29 in the W.J. Jones Auditorium at Marinette High School, 2135 Pierce Ave.

The band will be under the direction of Robert Berndt and Glen Reinke.

The concert band is a volunteer organization and includes close to 80 school music educators and others from the Wisconsin counties of Brown, Marinette, Oconto and Shawano, and the Michigan counties of Menominee and Dickenson. It performs spring and fall concerts each year.

Tickets will be available at the door for $5 for adults and $2 for students. The nonprofit band is financed entirely from concert receipts, donations and sponsorships.

Beginning the first half of the concert, Berndt will lead the band in “Flourish for Wind Band” by Ralph Vaughan Williams, which was also the first piece performed by the NEW Band 25 years ago at its first public concert.


Musical comedy debuts Saturday in Townsend

“Wine Women and Song,” a new original musical comedy, will be presented Saturday at the Townsend Town Hall. Shows times are 2 and 7 p.m. with seating at 1 and 6 p.m.

Music by troubadour Pat Lowery starts a half-hour before each show, which involves a studio audience attending a taping of “Fruit of the Vine,” a weekly series broadcast on WINE-TV.

Show announcer Char-Donnaye (Marcia Wahoske) introduces the guests, who chat with host Rhee Sling (Kathleen Marsh) before performing a musical number or comedy routine. Jon Marsh has a cameo role as curmudgeon janitor Jack Daniels. Scott Wycherley is Charles DeGallo, and Al Benson is studio cameraman and sound director.


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