Community

Wed
11
Jan

Teams to square off in robotics challenge

Middle and high school students from eastern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan will gather in Oconto Falls on Saturday for the fourth annual Northeast Wisconsin VEX Robotics Challenge Competition.

Approximately 20 teams will battle each other with robots created from VEX EDR.

Participants will square off in the game VEX Robotics Competition Starstruck, which is played by scoring stars and cubes in scoring zones and by hanging robots from a designated hanging bar. VEX Robotics Competition Starstruck was developed by VEX Robotics Inc. and the Robotics Education & Competition Foundation, leaders in educational and competitive robotics.

The event is open to the public, and admission is free.

Teams from Abrams, Appleton, Freedom, Green Bay, Oconomowoc, Oconto Falls and Viola in Wisconsin and teams from Crystal Falls and Kingsford, Michigan, are scheduled to compete.

Wed
11
Jan

Police shootings prompt girl into action


Contributed Photo

Oconto County Sheriff’s Department investigators Keith Johnson, left, and Justen Ragen pose with Kati Raddatz and the gift bags she donated to the department. Besides bringing bags of candy, Raddatz also brought dog treats for the K-9 units.

A 10-year-old girl with a big heart left an impression on local law enforcement officers last month by providing bags of goodies and an uplifting message. Kati Raddatz, of Oconto Falls, turned this summer’s news about shootings of police officers into her mission this December.

Twenty-one officers were killed in ambush-style shootings in 2016, which is the most in more than 20 years, according to a preliminary report prepared by The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.

“I wanted to help the police officers and give them something,” said Raddatz, a fifth-grade student at Oconto Falls Elementary School.

That “something” she gave was a gift bag filled with candy, each piece with a specific meaning. The caramel was added to help officers out of sticky situations; the gum, to help officer teams stick together; and the Laffy Taffy, to remind them to keep their sense of humor.

Wed
11
Jan

St. John’s Lutheran marks 125th anniversary

The congregation of St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church of Gillett was organized 125 years ago, on Oct. 3, 1892, and the first constitution was adopted. The first frame church and the first parsonage were built in 1898.

From 1902-1912 a schoolhouse was erected, the frame church was remodeled, the parsonage enlarged and a cemetery of 3 acres was purchased outside of Gillett. After the frame church was destroyed by a fire, the congregation voted to build a new church, which was dedicated on Dec. 3, 1916.

Other improvements and additions were later made, including the purchase of two bells for the clock tower and a Schaefer two-manual pipe organ. The new church building immediately became a local landmark and is often referred to as “the Clock Church.”

Wed
04
Jan

Christ Lutheran celebrating 125th anniversary

The country church of Christ Lutheran, Gillett, is celebrating its 125th anniversary with the theme “Anchored to Christ the Rock of Ages.”

The celebration begins on Sunday with a 10:15 a.m. service recognizing all who have been baptized at the church through the years. Former members are invited, especially those who have been baptized there.

The current pastor, the Rev. Michael Paholke, is a baptized member of the congregation.

The service will be followed by a panoramic picture of members and guests and a potluck dinner in the fellowship hall.

The church is located on the corner of County Road H and Red Banks Road in rural Gillett, in the area known as Hintz.

Early records indicate the congregation was formed from two groups served by Pastor Peter Dicke; one from the Berry Lake neighborhood and the other from the area north of the church.

Wed
04
Jan

ADRC will host community education programs

The Aging and Disability Resource Center of the Wolf River Region, in conjunction with the Alzheimer’s Association, is offering three free education programs at the ADRC office, 229 Van Buren St., Oconto Falls.

On Tuesday, Jan. 17, the topic will be “Dementia Conversations: Driving, Doctor Visits, Legal and Financial Planning.” Participants will learn how to have honest and caring conversations when someone begins to show signs of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

The presentation on Tuesday, Feb. 21, will be “Know the 10 Signs.” The warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease are often dismissed as side effects of normal aging. This training shares the 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease, separates myth from reality and addresses commonly held fears.

The presentation on Tuesday, March 21, will be “The Basics: Memory Loss, Dementia and Alzheimer’s.” Participants will learn about detection, causes, risk factors, stages and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.

Wed
04
Jan

Sled dog racing coming to Mountain

Upwards of 50 sled dog teams hailing from throughout the Midwest and beyond will converge on the town of Doty for the inaugural Doty Dog Days of Winter sled dog race and festival.

Races will start at 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, and 9 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, and continue throughout both days.

The race start and finish will be located at the Doty Community Center, 14899 County Road T, Mountain, 1 mile north of state Highway 64.

Race events on Saturday and Sunday will include junior (age 7 and up) two- and three-dog classes, adult 10-dog, six-dog and four-dog classes, and adult two- and three-dog skijoring. Race distances will vary from 2 miles to 12.5 miles.

Ample spectator viewing areas are available at the start and finish lines. Spectators are encouraged to enter the dog holding area and watch the dogs being prepared for the race. Individuals might be asked to help hold a team at the starting line.

Wed
28
Dec

Lena Lions honor longtime agriculture teacher

Doug Neta, president of the Lena Lions Club, presented Roberta Windus with the Educators Community Service Award earlier this month at the club’s annual pre-Christmas awards banquet at Romy’s Holiday Inn Supper Club at Kelly Lake.

For a number of years, the Lena Lions have presented the award to an educator from the Lena Public Schools who has contributed volunteer work to the Lena community.Windus is the longtime agricultural teacher in Lena.

Windus grew up in the Valders area and graduated from Valders High School. She earned an associate degree at the University of Wisconsin-Manitowoc, a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture educaiton from UW-River Falls and a Master of Science degree in education from UW-Stevens Point.

Wed
28
Dec

Bizjak honored by Lena Lions

The Lena Lions have named Craig Bizjak as the recipient of the 2016 Lena Lions Member Community Service Award.

Club President Doug Neta presented the award at the club’s annual Christmas party Dec. 6 at Romy’s Holiday Inn.

Bizjak was born in Milwaukee and graduated from Custer High School in 1973. He has one brother, Thomas.

He moved to the Lena area a number of years ago. He is employed at Silvan Industries in Marinette and in his spare time has worked on the Bizjak farms near Crivitz and the Hallada farms in the Lena area.

He is a 20-year member of the Lena Lions and served many years as the club treasurer and as a member of the board of directors. He represented the club as the voting delegate at a number of Lions district conventions.

In addition, he has worked many hours each year at the Lena Dairyfest, serving as co-chair and the organizer of the parade. Each year at the annual Lions fish fry, Bizjak is one of the main chefs.

Wed
28
Dec

Abrams theater to hold auditions for ‘Annie’

Abrams Spotlight Productions will hold auditions for “Annie” next week.

Open auditions will be held from 6-8 p.m. Jan. 3 and Jan. 4 at the Byng Community Theater, 5852 Maple St., Abrams. Callbacks, if needed, will be from 6-8 p.m. Jan. 5.

“Annie” won seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical. The score, written by Charles Strouse and Martin Charmin, includes the smash hit “Tomorrow.”

With the perfect combination of street smarts and optimism, Annie warms the audience’s hearts as she rises from next to nothing to finding riches in New York City.

Performance dates will be March 31, April 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9, with rehearsals Sunday and Thursday evenings beginning Jan. 8. Prior to auditioning, performers should consider their availability to attend rehearsals and performances.

There are various roles for both kids and adults, and individuals ages 8 and older are encouraged to audition.

Wed
28
Dec

Agencies receive funds to help with transportation needs

Two area agencies are among the 47 agencies statewide receiving awards totaling over $4.4 million in state and federal funds to support local transportation options for seniors and individuals with disabilities.

NEWCAP Inc. in Marinette received $47,983 for a mobility manager position and $14,989 for medical milage reimbursement.

The Oconto County Commission on Aging received $44,000 for the replacement of a mini bus.

The specialized transportation program is administered through the Wisconsin Department of Transportation via the Federal Transit Administration’s Section 5310 Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program.

The grants are awarded to assist local public bodies and private, nonprofit agencies with providing transportation services for seniors and individuals with disabilities. The services include mobility management, operating assistance and vehicle purchases.

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