News Archives for 2017-01

J-1 Visa Program A Start To Increased Cultural Exchange With Chinese Sister City

By Tim Kowols

Door County Board Chairperson Dave Lienau hopes the 25 slots slated for Chinese students from the sister city of Jingdezhen is the start of great cultural exchange between the two areas. In addition to working at local businesses through the J-1 Visa program, the hope is for students from both countries take advantage of travel abroad educational opportunities, whether it is at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College campuses in Door County or Jingdezhen University and Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute. Lienau says it is a relationship both sister cities could benefit from in the long run.



Door County officials visited Jingdezhen last October, the fourth time a delegation has made the trip since the two became sister cities over 12 years ago.

Expo Brings Hope For Increased Camping, RV Sales in 2017

By Tim Kowols

Early indications from this year's WBAY Camping and RV Expo in Green Bay are showing a positive year for camper sales and campground owners. Attendance at this year's expo was up 10% according to Quietwoods RV president Steve Neuville, translating into a lot of interest in buying new equipment and scheduling family vacations. Neuville says he noticed people were considering many different options, especially smaller campers.



According to the Outdoor Industry Foundation, camping and other outdoor recreation opportunities contribute over $9.7 billion annually to Wisconsin's economy, generating over 129,000 jobs and $570 million in tax revenue.

Wotachek Hopes To Make A Difference On Door County Board

By Tim Kowols

Laura Vlies-Wotachek hopes to bring her youth and experience to her new role on the Door County Board of Supervisors. The appointment of Wotachek came just over a month after former District 9 supervisor Richard Haines passed away from an illness. Wotachek hopes her experience helping grow the Kewaunee County Fair pays dividends as Door County hopes to improve their own event this year.



In addition to continuing her active role with the Door County Alcohol and Other Drug Coalition, Wotachek also hopes to have a positive impact on the environmental issues facing the region. Her term runs until April 2018.

Bullying Plays A Role In "Empire Falls," Topic Of Tuesday Presentation

By Tim Kowols

A three week celebration of reading, Door County Reads takes on a much more serious tone Tuesday evening when it hosts a presentation on bullying at the Miller Art Museum at 6:30.  Bullying plays a role in the interactions between residents in "Empire Falls," the story of a diner owner trying to survive in a small town that is slowly disappearing before his eyes. Tracy Vreeke from the Door County Library says the book has resonated a lot with readers, and having school counselor Gary Grahl on hand to talk about bullying is just another way to tie it altogether.



Over the next week, local theater troupes will perform play readings associated with this year's Door County Reads book while discussions take place at various library branches across the area. You can hear more about the book and upcoming events by listening to our podcast posted online with this story.

[soundcloud widget_name="Soundcloud" display_title="no" url="" width="1/1" el_position="first last"]

Weight Exemption For Motor Fuel Carriers Extended Through February To Avoid Possible Shortages In Area

By Paul Schmitt

In an effort to avoid a potential gasoline and fuel shortage during the West Shore Pipeline shutdown between Milwaukee and Green Bay, the Wisconsin DOT are allowing petroleum carriers to transport overweight loads another month in the northeast region of the state.  Governor Scott Walker extended the original Executive Order 227 which declared an energy emergency last month through February 27 now.  Wisconsin State Patrol Captain Brian Ausloos says future weather will determine if any further extension is needed as motor carriers continue to meet the higher winter demands for fuel.



The exemption for motor carriers of fuel is for weight and axle combination weight limits and not more than 15 percent greater than the gross vehicle weight limitations, according to Ausloos.

Friends Of Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront Posts E-mails On Social Media Between City's Law Firm And Title Company

By Paul Schmitt

One party to a law suit suing the City of Sturgeon Bay over a controversial hotel project is releasing information he thinks will show the city moved forward on the project even though officials knew they were violating the law.  Shawn Fairchild, who made the post on Facebook Sunday, told that "through public information, we are trying to expose how the City government worked very hard to get around the Public Trust, rather than choosing to work with it.  This information shows how the 'Approximate Ordinary High Water Mark (OHWM) Concurrence' was orchestrated."  The posting showed correspondences from Pinkert Law Firm attorney Jim Smith and First American Title Insurance Company who declined underwriting the parcel of land of the development due to concerns over the redevelopment including private commercial uses and the Public Trust Doctrine.  The trial between the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront and the City of Sturgeon Bay is scheduled to begin February 9.  Mayor Thad Birmingham was contacted but declined to comment.







Kewaunee Hires Art Osten, Jr. As New Interim City Administrator

By Paul Schmitt

The City of Kewaunee has name Art Osten, Jr. as the new interim City Administrator.  Osten brings over 30 years of local government experience and has served as a municipal administrator for 16 years including this being his fourth time as an interim City Administrator.  Osten is eager to tackle his new responsibilities and upcoming projects for the city.

Osten graduated from the University of Wisconsin with Masters Degrees in Public Policy & Administration and Urban & Regional Planning.  He has experience as village administrator in Illinois at Indian Head Park, Mount Prospect, Oak Brook, Shorewood and Fox River Grove.  Osten started his new position as Kewanee Administrator last Monday, January 23.

(photo contributed)

"Money Management Monday"-- Budgeting For Annual Property Taxes That Are Due On Tuesday

By Paul Schmitt

All Property Taxes are due by the deadline on Tuesday and taxpayers should try to make every effort to pay the bill in full.  Gay Pustaver from Money Management Counselors says you can ask for a delay but there are consequences in doing that.



Pustaver says a good technique in paying off your property taxes is to put 1/12 of the money aside every month during the year.  Property taxes that are not paid for within three to four years can lead to foreclosure, according to Pustaver.  For the complete Money Management Monday interview with Gay Pustaver, go to the audio links below:





Area Ice Fishing Heats Up Over Weekend As Cooler Temperatures Improve Ice Conditions

By Paul Schmitt

Area ice fishing anglers reported successful catches this past weekend.  Professional Ice Fishing Guide and voice of the Door County Fishing Report JJ Malvitz says the whitefish were really biting the last few days.  The key for many anglers was maximizing every opportunity.



Malvitz says ice conditions stabilized in the past week with ice between 12 to 15 inches deep in many areas.  For the latest complete Door County fishing report from JJ Malvitz, go to the audio link below:


(Photo contributed)

One Vehicle Rollover Accident Sunday Night In Kewaunee County Sends Two To The Hospital

By Paul Schmitt

A one-vehicle rollover accident in Kewaunee County last night sent the driver and a passenger to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.  Kewaunee County Sheriff Matt Joski says a report came in prior to the accident that occurred at about 7 pm near the intersection of County Trunk D and 6th Road in the township of Pierce.



The 23-year old man and his 22-year-old woman passenger in a 2001 Toyota SUV, both of Green Bay, were transported to a Green Bay hospital.  Their conditions and the cause of the accident are not available at this time.

"Door County- Move To Amend" Meeting Tuesday To Address The Influence Of Money In Politics

By Paul Schmitt

Door County-United to Amend will be discussing campaign finance reform at an open forum tomorrow night at the Door County Library.  Member Nancy Fisher explains the grassroots effort being done to regulate campaign spending.



The meeting is at the Jane Greene Room in the library and will start at 5 pm tomorrow.  The nonpartisan group is hoping to get local municipalities to speak up on the issue and get elected officials to join 95 other Wisconsin communities to get the State Legislature to hold a referendum throughout the state.

Long Term Investment Strategy Still The Best Approach As Stock Market Surges Over 20,000 Last Week

By Paul Schmitt

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed over 20,000 last week hitting the eagerly anticipated landmark, but investors are advised to take a comprehensive look at their investing before jumping into the market aggressively.  Casey St. Henry of Thrivent Financial in Sturgeon Bay says a long-term strategy is best when considering buying and selling shares in the stock market.



Another strong economic indicator is the S & P 500 which closed five points short of 2300 on Friday.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 20,093.78 last week.

ROPS System Could Save Lives On The Farm

By Aerica Bjurstrom

Winter is a great time to do maintenance of farm machinery, and one item that should be on your list is to install rollover protection on your tractors. Did you know tractor rollovers are the leading cause of farm-related deaths? That's why it's so important that each tractor have a rollover protective structure (ROPS).

A ROPS, when used with a seatbelt, is 99 percent effective in preventing injury or death in the event of an overturn. More than half the tractors in Wisconsin do not have this protection.

The Wisconsin ROPS Rebate Program reimburses owners up to 70 percent (maximum of $865) toward the total cost of purchasing, shipping and installing individual ROPS.

Wisconsin resident tractor owners, both full-and part-time farmers, can apply for a ROPS via the hotline, 1-877-767-7748 (1-877-ROPSR4U), or the Web site, You will receive information on ROPS options for your tractor, costs, and sources. Contact the ROPs rebate program when you are ready to make your purchase and they will give you instructions on how to get your rebate.

The program is run by the National Farm Medicine Center at Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation, and is made possible through philanthropic support from the Auction of Champions. More than 180 ROPS have been installed since 2013.

For more information call Dr. Barbara Marlenga at the National Farm Medicine Center, 715-389-1519. Or you can contact me at the Kewaunee County UW-Extension Office at 388-7138.

Hunter And Firearm Safety Course Sign Up Coming This Saturday In Sturgeon Bay

By Paul Schmitt

The sign up for the next hunter education class in Sturgeon Bay is this coming Saturday.  DNR Conservation Warden Chris Kratcha says the class is a very important part of teaching gun safety for hunters of all ages.



Anyone born on or after January 1, 1973, must complete the hunter education course to get a hunting license in Wisconsin.  The class is open to any age but students are encouraged to wait until they turn 12 years old before taking it, according to Kratcha.  Enrollment for classes will be from 10 am until 2 pm at Howie's Tackle in Sturgeon Bay on Saturday.  Classes start up at the end of February and the beginning of March.

History Of The Pestigo Fire Lives On With Upcoming Special Programs By Barb Chisholm

By Paul Schmitt

The history of the "Great Fire of 1871", known locally as the Pestigo Fire, lives on with special presentations by Barb (Englebert) Chisholm of Sturgeon Bay.  Chisholm is a fifth-generation American of Belgian decent with ancestors who survived the devastating fire over 145 years ago.  Dressed in character as her great-great-grandmother, Chisholm shares the story of the Englebert family's survival.



Chisholm, who is the secretary of the Peninsula Belgian-American Club,  is scheduled to speak at the Door County Senior Center in Sturgeon Bay this Tuesday at 12:45 pm and also at the Kewaunee County Historical Society Center on Ellis Street in Kewaunee at 1 pm next Saturday, February 4.

"Are These The Last Days For Door County's Boreal Forest?" Topic At Climate Change Of Door County Coalition Program Wednesday

By Paul Schmitt

The Climate Change Coalition of Door County is featuring a program this Wednesday titled "Are These The Last Days for Door County's 4,000-year-old Boreal Forest?".   Lee Frelich, PH.D, an internationally recognized expert in forest ecology and the environment will make the presentation.  Climate Change Coalition of Door County member Dick Smythe shares what Dr. Frelich will focus on Wednesday night.



A boreal forest by definition is a northern forest that includes pine, birch and spruce trees and is prevalent on the lakeside of the peninsula, according to Smythe.  The program will begin at 7 pm at Bjorklunden in Baileys Harbor and is free to the public.

Administrator Hopes Legislature Gives Public Schools The Tools To Be Innovative

By Tim Kowols

Schools chasing innovation are finding out how hard it is to keep up financially. Addressing funding gaps and adding broadband in rural districts are two areas school administrators hope Governor Scott Walker addresses when he gathers the Wisconsin Legislature for his budget address on February 8. Algoma superintendent Nick Cochart says schools need to stay competitive and be on the cutting edge of technology.



Cochart says the Wisconsin Legislature need to curb the growth of its voucher program and give public school districts more flexibility in spending so they can continue to be innovative.

Door Peninsula Becoming One For The Birds

By Tim Kowols

You can count Sturgeon Bay and Egg Harbor as two communities in Door County as being more bird friendly. The city of Sturgeon Bay recently received its Bird City Wisconsin recognition from the Milwaukee Audubon Society for its aviary conservation activities. City administrator Josh VanLieshout says it was an honor for Sturgeon Bay to earn the designation.



Administrator Ryan Heise says Egg Harbor officials have been working with UW-Green Bay master graduate and avid birder Tom Prestby on how the village can become even more bird friendly such as installing more feeders and removing invasive species.



Ephraim, Baileys Harbor, Washington Island, and Algoma are also listed as Bird City Wisconsin communities.

Support Building For Dairy Pride Act

By Tim Kowols

A bill on the U.S. Senate floor hopes to protect the dairy industry, an economic driver for the region and the state. The Dairy Pride Act, introduced by Senator Tammy Baldwin earlier this month, would enforce existing Food and Drug Administration regulations defining the products as coming from dairy animals. The bill comes on the heels of almond milk sales rising 250 percent in the last five years while its dairy counterpart has suffered a 37 percent drop in consumption since the 1970s according to the Huffington Post. Dairy Business Association Executive Director and Sturgeon Bay resident Tim Trotter says it is important to separate the two in order to protect the well-being of his farming neighbors in Door and Kewaunee County.


Dairy is big business in the area particularly in Kewaunee County where it has an economic impact of $65 million according to the Kewaunee County Economic Development Corporation. If passed, plant-based products would be forced to re-label to meet FDA guidelines.



Door County Kayak Fishing Pro Bill Schultz Featured At Chicagoland Fishing Travel And Outdoor Expo This Weekend

By Paul Schmitt

Open water fishing and kayaking might be a few months away in the area, but fishing and kayaking enthusiasts alike can look forward to outdoor shows and expos in the next couple months.  Kayak Fishing Pro and voice of the kayak fishing report Bill Schultz will be busy this weekend at a show in the Chicago area.



Schultz's Kayak Fishing series will be back in May on the radio stations of  To contact Bill with your kayak questions,  email him at

High Postage Rates Raise Additional Challenges For Non-Profits

By Tim Kowols

The increase in postage rates has made it more expensive for non-profit organizations to do their good work. Forever stamps went up two cents last week while other services went up as much as several dollars. Those pennies add up to a lot when you are people like Nancy Hutchinson from Adopt-A-Soldier Door County, who mails out over 800 packages annually to local members of the Armed Forces.


Adopt-A-Soldier Door County is currently collecting items and monetary donations for its Easter box campaign. Hutchinson has been collecting items and sending care packages to troops from Door and Kewaunee County since she started the organization in 2008.

Top Horseman To Give Clinics At Farm Technology Days

By Tim Kowols

Horse owners can have their problems with their steeds addressed when one of the country's leading horsemen and clinicians visits Kewaunee County this summer. During Farm Technology Days this July in Algoma, horseman Chris Cox will conduct a series of clinics that will work on everything from building a rider's confidence to correcting issues with the horse. Farm Technology Days Horse Committee Co-chairperson Laura Siegmund says this is an extremely rare opportunity to get guidance from a world-renowned horseman like Cox.



To be considered for the clinics, you must fill out an application and submit a five-minute video of you and your horse as soon as possible for space is limited. Farm Technology Days runs from July 11-13 at Ebert Enterprises in Algoma.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwc3JjJTNEJTIyaHR0cHMlM0ElMkYlMkZ3d3cuZmFjZWJvb2suY29tJTJGcGx1Z2lucyUyRnBvc3QucGhwJTNGaHJlZiUzRGh0dHBzJTI1M0ElMjUyRiUyNTJGd3d3LmZhY2Vib29rLmNvbSUyNTJGRlREMjAxNyUyNTJGcG9zdHMlMjUyRjc1NDA5OTI2ODA3Mzk3MCUyNTNBMCUyNndpZHRoJTNENTAwJTIyJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1MDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjI1MTglMjIlMjBzdHlsZSUzRCUyMmJvcmRlciUzQW5vbmUlM0JvdmVyZmxvdyUzQWhpZGRlbiUyMiUyMHNjcm9sbGluZyUzRCUyMm5vJTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dUcmFuc3BhcmVuY3klM0QlMjJ0cnVlJTIyJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF [/vc_raw_html]

Purinton's Journey To The South Atlantic To Be Featured At Maritime Speaker Series

By Tim Kowols

A former Washington Island Ferry captain will share his experience traveling to the Falklands and South Georgia Island during the next Maritime Speakers Series presentation. Richard Purinton and his son Thor traveled to the islands as part of a Lindblad-National Geographic expedition commemorating the 100th anniversary of Ernest Shackelton's own journey to the South Atlantic Ocean. Purinton says he went on the trip to follow in the footsteps of a man he had long followed but discovered much more along the way.


The experience and images of Purinton's expedition will be featured during the speaker series event at the Door County Maritime Museum on February 2. The free program begins at 7 p.m.

Panel Gives State November 1 Deadline To Redraw District Boundaries

By Tim Kowols

The Wisconsin Legislature will have until November 1 to redraw its electoral district maps after a federal judicial panel declared the old boundaries unconstitutional.  This is the second time since November that federal judges ruled the old maps to unfairly benefit Republicans in the state. While the judicial panel will allow Gov. Scott Walker and state lawmakers to create new district boundaries themselves, Jay Heck from Common Cause Wisconsin says this is an opportunity for the legislature to do it fairly.



State Senator Dave Hansen of Green Bay says his Senate Bill 13 could take the process a different direction by removing politicians out of the picture almost entirely, similar to what is already being done in Iowa.



The state has already appealed the decision, meaning the case will likely head to the United States Supreme Court for their opinion.

State Commander To Visit During Local American Legion Ceremony

By Tim Kowols

The public can get a rare look at an American Legion tradition when its post in Algoma hosts a ceremony celebrating Four Chaplains Day Sunday.  The ceremony is in honor of four religious leaders that gave their lives to save crew members aboard the Dorchester during a World War II battle that claimed 605 lives during its sinking. Nellie DeBaker from American Legion Post 236 says Sunday will be extra special because state legion commander Rev. Daniel Seehafer will be present, a first for Kewaunee County.



The Four Chaplains Day program will take place at the American Legion Post 236 clubhouse in Algoma beginning at 1:30 p.m.

Growth Of Edible Marijuana, Opioid Abuse In Area Concerns Parents

By Tim Kowols

The growth of edible marijuana products and opioids in the area was a major topic of discussion at a town hall meeting held Thursday evening by the Door County Alcohol and Other Drug Coalition. Parents expressed their concern with how the products are being marketed and how its use can be easily spread throughout the area. With neighboring states beginning to legalize its use, Laura Vlies-Wotacheck from the DCAODC says a major concern is particularly with edible marijuana products, where its use and effects are still relatively unknown.



Vlies-Wotacheck says since Colorado legalized the recreational use of marijuana, there has been a 29 percent increase in emergency overdoses in the state. You can get information on a variety of drug-related topics like the dangers of opioid abuse and edible marijuana by contacting the DCAODC.


Door County 4-H Learning Life Skills Through Service

By Tim Kowols

The Door County 4-H is using its community service projects as a way to work on other useful life skills. In addition to hosting its Children's Christmas Store and adopting a family during the holidays, the organization's eight clubs have been working on projects across the area before planning trips to camps and working on their exhibits for fairs this summer. Door County 4-H Youth Development leader Dawn Vandevoort says kids can take away a lot of real-life skills while making an impact in the area they live.



Families new to 4-H or want to learn more about the organization can attend a meeting  on Monday, January 30 at 6 p.m. inside the Door County Government Center.

Kewaunee School District Going Over Numbers After Power Plant Settlement

By Tim Kowols

Kewaunee School District officials continue to sort out the details after the town of Carlton and Dominion Resources came to an agreement over the shuttered Kewaunee Power Station. The two sides agreed to a $15 million assessment of the former nuclear plant and are currently waiting for a judge sign off on it. The school district, along with the county and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College will have to pay back nearly $11.9 million over the next 10 years after the town assessed the property at over $450 million. Kewaunee superintendent Karen Treml says they are still looking at the numbers to see what it will mean for their budget.



The school district is about to embark on Phase 2 of its renovation projects, which will turn its attention to the internal infrastructure of its buildings.


Door County Tourism Numbers Continues To Impress State Tourism Secretary

By Paul Schmitt

It may not be prime tourism season in Door County right now but the county is coming off an impressive 2016 campaign that is having state officials take notice.  Wisconsin Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett credits the Door County Visitors Bureau with much of the tourism success in the area.



Last year Door County was ranked eighth out of 72 counties in the state with $224 million in total travel expenditures, employed 3,110 people, and generated $35.9 million in tax revenue, according to Klett.

State And DOT Have Big Decisions Forthcoming With Roads Projects Costing Double Than Anticipated

By Paul Schmitt

The state of Wisconsin is facing double the cost of major road projects from the time they are planned until the time they are actually built.  According to the state Department of Transportation's (DOT) sweeping audit, the costs of building nineteen projects in the state between 2006 and 2015 was over $750 million more than anticipated due to the DOT not factoring in the effects of inflation, as reported by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.  1st District Representative Joel Kitchens in an interview with last month said that the state and assembly have its work cut out for them in financing roads in the future.



In December, then state Transportation Secretary Mark Gottlieb told lawmakers that more than 40 percent of State and U.S. highways will be deemed in poor condition within the next ten years if Wisconsin does not find the funding or answers soon.

Warm Winter Weather Taking A Toll On Seasonal Recreation

By Tim Kowols

The mild winter weather is wreaking havoc on those looking for recreational opportunities outside. Snowmobile trails have been closed for weeks and some areas usually used for ice fishing have been deemed unsafe. Fishing guide J.J. Malvitz says he has lost between $5,000 and $7,000 on potential charters, but says safety is more important than money.



Brynn Swanson from the Baileys Harbor Community Association is grateful to have understanding bands and vendors after being forced to cancel this weekend's Winter Rally on the 'Roo due to not trusting the ice where events were to take place.



Temperatures are expected to drop heading into the weekend, ending a streak of multiple days above freezing.

Trolley Service Gets Test Run In Sister Bay This Summer

By Tim Kowols

A trolley service plans to be rolling through the village of Sister Bay beginning at the end of June. Village officials hope the addition of the service will help address traffic congestion in the area due to its increasing popularity. With a trolley currently under lease and routes being planned, village administrator Zeke Jackson says the service will be good for everyone who frequents downtown.



Jackson says the service would run until the middle of August with the option of using the trolley for other times after that. The village's parking committee has also looked into other avenues to address concerns in Sister Bay's downtown.

Released Email Shows Concern For Public Trust Doctrine Issues On West Waterfront

By Tim Kowols

The Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront believe a recently released email between city officials and their lawyer is a sign that legal issues were known before moving ahead with the final design of the west waterfront redevelopment. In a 2014 email circulating online, Sturgeon Bay Community Development Director Marty Olejniczak expressed his frustration with Tom German, the deputy secretary of the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands, while the city was trying to acquire a lake bed lease for parcels on the waterfront. Olejniczak wrote "if I could have reached through and strangled him I might have. This stupid public trust doctrine continues to haunt us and I am getting fed up."  Dan Collins from the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront says the email is one example available in public records showing the city knew of the issues that lied ahead.



The city of Sturgeon Bay and the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront head to trial over the disputed parcels and their ordinary high water mark on February 9.

[singleImage image="23324" img_size="full" img_width="0" img_height="0" img_link_target="_self" width="1/1" el_position="first last"]

Luxemburg-Casco Intermediate School Hits Chord With Guitar Donation For Veterans

By Tim Kowols

Local veterans will be able to pluck a few extra chords thanks to the kindness of students at Luxemburg-Casco Intermediate School. Students raised over $2,300 to purchase 15 new guitars for the Green Bay Chapter of Guitars For Vets. Supporting veterans with a special campaign has become an annual tradition, but music teacher Mary Schley says this year was different.



Erin Mendoza from Guitars For Vets said she was overwhelmed by the number of guitars that were donated, which allow even more veterans learn how to play an instrument.



Students hosted donation challenges throughout the school and received additional donations from a Coast Guard Auxiliary group and Celebrate DePere.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html] [vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html]

Peninsula Pride Farms Poised For Big Plans In 2017

By Tim Kowols

Peninsula Pride Farms plans on building on the progress it made during its first year of existence. Since it was founded in March 2016, its 42 members planted over 48,000 acres in cover crops to address phosphorus loss and entered agreements to assist four residents through its recently established Water Well program. During its first annual meeting Wednesday in Casco, the organization announced it would enter into multi-year programs with UW Discovery Farms and Natural Resources Conservation Service Demo Farms to further study the improvements they could make to not only make their operations better but protect ground and surface water. Peninsula Pride Farms president Don Niles hopes they can do more than "just do a better job."



The organization also hopes to work with Kewaunee County and the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey to help improve soil maps and farmers' nutrient management plans. Peninsula Pride Farms is made up of large and small-scale agricultural operations in Kewaunee and southern Door counties.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html]

Michigan Street Bridge To Reopen Thursday Afternoon

By Tim Kowols

After over three weeks of repair work, the Michigan Street Bridge in Sturgeon Bay will reopen to motorists and pedestrians Thursday afternoon. Poor winter weather caused crews to delay its original reopening last week.  The bridge has been closed since January 3 to repair nine support beams damaged by a semi-truck towing a backhoe last April.  The project marked one of the first times the Wisconsin Department of Transportation used three-dimensional technology called LiDAR to create the specifications needed to replicate the damaged beams of the historic bridge.

Luxemburg-Casco School Superintendent Shares Experience Of Presentation On Community Engagement At State Convention

By Paul Schmitt

The Luxemburg-Casco School District was featured during a panel discussion at the 2017 Joint State Education Convention held in Milwaukee last week.   Superintendent Glenn Schlender and School Board President Tim Kinnard represented L-C at the conference.  Schlender says it was nice to be recognized for the community engagement process the school has implemented over the past year.



The discussion touched on why it is important for school districts to connect with their communities and what were the results and expectations to sustain future engagements, according to Schlender.  Luxemburg-Casco held numerous informational meetings and engagement conversations with the public last year concerning building improvements and long-term goals for the school district.

Domestic Abuse Can Have A Huge Economic Effect As Well As Take An Emotional And Physical Toll

By Paul Schmitt

Domestic Abuse can have a big effect on area workforces.  Help of Door County Executive Director Steve Vickman says last year it cost over eight million days of paid work in the United States.  Lost jobs are also a major result of domestic violence, according to Vickman.



Vickman says domestic abuse costs the United States economy $8.3 billion annually.  For information on Help of Door County click on the link:

Sturgeon Bay Police Still Looking For Help In The Case Of 13 Mailboxes Damaged On Cove Road Earlier This Week

By Paul Schmitt

The Sturgeon Bay Police Department is looking for help from anyone who may have any information on the mailboxes that were damaged overnight on Sunday in Sturgeon Bay.  According to the Sturgeon Bay Police facebook account, 13 mailboxes were damaged between the 900- and 1600 block of Cove Road.  Evidence indicated that a baseball bat or other large object was used in causing the damage.  Anyone with information on the suspect or suspects is asked to contact the police department.  A cash reward is possible if the tip leads to the ID and a conviction of the responsible party.  If you have any information call 746-2450.

Friends Of Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront Want Equal Time After City Mailing Of Documents

By Tim Kowols

The Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront believe they should receive equal time after the city sent out documents in residents' bills from Sturgeon Bay Utilities. The mailing, which was also posted on the city of Sturgeon Bay Facebook page, highlights the accomplishments of the west waterfront redevelopment and the effect its lawsuit against the Friends group has had on potential revenues in the Tax Increment District. Carri Andersson, a plaintiff in the lawsuit against the city, believes the letter is framing the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront with costing the taxpayers a lot of money.



In the letter, the city states the lawsuit is costing TID #4 $225,000 in property tax revenue every year development does not take place. The two sides are expected to go to trial February 9.

UW-Extension Office Offering Free Webinar On Estate Planning On Thursday

By Paul Schmitt

The Kewaunee county UW-Extension office is hosting a series of free live webinar meetings to provide information on financial planning topics.  The series kicks off Thursday with a presentation on Estate Planning from 1-3 pm.   UW-Extension Office Family Living Educator Renee Koenig says the three-part series offers a unique opportunity for attendees to participate.



Attorney Bridget Finke will be the first presenter on estate planning.  The other two seminars topics concern Long Term Care and Medicaid Eligibility/Estate Recovery.


Financial Planning Seminars

  • January 26, 2017 Estate planning

Bridget Finke, Attorney, Valley Crossing Law

1:00 – 3:00 p.m.


  • February 23, 2017        Long Term Care: Planning for My Future Needs

Steve Shapiro, Medigap Insurance Specialist,

State of Wisconsin Board on Aging and Long Term Care and the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance

1:00 – 3:00 p.m.


  • March 23, 2017 Medicaid Eligibility and Estate Recovery

Anthony Schmoldt, Attorney, Schmoldt Law Office

1:00 – 3:00 p.m.



Where:         Kewaunee County UW-Extension, 810 Lincoln Street, Kewaunee


Cost:              FREE


Register:      Call Renee Koenig, 920-388-7137  



These sessions are a part of the Wisconsin Farm Succession and Estate Planning UW-Extension statewide webinar series.

Community Plays Huge Role In Door County Reads

By Tim Kowols

This year's Door County Reads is bringing more than just readers together around a common book. With the focus of "Empire Falls" on the local businesses and organizations in the fictional town, Door County's own establishments are participating in their own ways such as being a part of discussions and hosting events. Tracy Vreeke from the Door County Library says it is a great partnership to have for the winter reading program.



After kicking off Monday evening, Door County Reads will feature book and film discussions at its library branches, play readings at a variety of performing arts venues, and a panel with local business owners. You can see the full schedule and listen to this week's podcast online with this story.

[soundcloud widget_name="Soundcloud" display_title="no" url="" width="1/1" el_position="first last"]

Governor Introduces Welfare Reform Package

By Tim Kowols

Governor Scott Walker hopes his new initiative will bring Wisconsinites back to the workforce. Introduced at several locations across the state Monday, the "Wisconsin Works For Everyone" welfare reform proposal includes items designed to expand work and job training requirements to adults with children on public assistance and help grow programs designed to get recently released prisoners back to work. Sandy Duckett from We Are Hope, Inc. says it is a good start but other factors need to be considered as to why an individual may not be able to hold down a job.



The welfare reform proposal would also give tax credits to people disabled or aging out of foster care while working and low-income parents fulfilling their child support orders. You can read some of the positive and negative reaction to Monday's announcement online with this story.


Rep. Joel Kitchens

"Yesterday Governor Walker announced his "Wisconsin Works for Everyone" reform package. Building on our past successes, as well as those of the Thompson administration, this is the next step towards welfare reform in Wisconsin. Wisconsin has been a national leader on this issue and I am happy to continue to make it a priority.


"Breaking down workplace barriers and incentivizing employment is a crucial step towards helping our unemployed. Additionally, providing workplace training is critical in breaking the cycle of generational poverty and reducing dependency on government.


"Earlier this month I attended a press conference where it was announced that Wisconsin has been awarded $2 million through the New Skills for Youth Grant. This grant, will build on the "Wisconsin Works for Everyone" in order to train employees for skilled, family-supporting jobs.


"I look forward to working with my colleagues to continue to address Wisconsin's workplace needs and further reform our welfare system to benefit all."


Sen. Robert Cowles:

"As I talk to people throughout my district, at job fairs or at the Green Bay Job Center, one of the biggest impediments to transitioning from public assistance to self-sustainability is not work ethic or education, but the disruption that comes when you no longer qualify for public assistance benefits during a financially sensitive time in one's life. When you are just starting to get on your feet financially and you abruptly lose food benefits, child care, healthcare or even possibly your home, it's very challenging to continue that positive momentum. Implementing some quality reforms to lighten this drastic shift, known as a "benefit cliff", can alleviate some of the challenges for those on public assistance," said Senator Cowles (R-Green Bay). The package, as outlined, will focus on reducing the benefit cliffs of several public assistance programs. Additionally, "Wisconsin Works for Everyone" will initiate efforts for individuals already working to stay working and increase employee retention, workforce reentry, reduce employment disincentives, and continue to work with individuals with disabilities to get a job and earn money within the Medicaid Purchase Plan (MAPP). "While I still would like to see the fiscal analysis of the various programs that are being proposed, this is certainly a laudable effort that I hope will have a positive impact on the lives of Wisconsinites. Reducing the barriers to employment is the next step in the mission to get more Wisconsinites working and create an environment for jobs and employment. I look forward to working with the Governor and my legislative colleagues on a balanced reform package," Cowles continued.


Sen. LaTonya Johnson:

"We must treat people with dignity and respect and provide them with real opportunities if we actually want to improve crisis-level poverty in Wisconsin communities and across our nation. Unfortunately, past attempts alleging to reform welfare have a history of using whatever has existed as a safety net to trap Wisconsin families in a perpetual cycle of poverty. "I believe it is morally unfair and unjust to threaten reduced access to food and shelter for low-income families with children. While Gov. Walker and his allies are giving hand-outs to the wealthy and well-connected at the expense of Wisconsin families in need, I will fight to build an infrastructure in Wisconsin that paves the way for our youth and families to thrive and succeed."


Rep. Lisa Subeck:

"Republicans have spent the last six years driving down wages in Wisconsin. Poverty has reached a crisis level in too many of our communities, including parts of Madison. Instead of addressing the problem of poverty level wages the Governor is threatening to limit access to food and shelter for low income families with children. While Governor Walker and Republicans in the legislature set their sights on scoring political points at the expense of our most vulnerable neighbors, I will fight for family supporting jobs and policies that make it easier, not harder, for Wisconsin families to get ahead."



Southern Door To Place Two-Year Operational Referendum On Spring Ballot

By Tim Kowols

The Southern Door School Board voted Monday to place an operational referendum on the spring ballot. The community will be asked to allow the school district to exceed its revenue limit by $936,000 each of the next two years. District Superintendent Patti Vickman says because the state no longer allows it to raise revenue limits, schools often find themselves having a hard time funding their programs.



According to a press release from Southern Door School District, officials will be offering informational sessions to give voters a chance to learn more about their needs in the near future. The spring election is April 4.

Door County Tourism Zone Commission Goes After Unpaid Room Sales Taxes

By Tim Kowols

The Door County Tourism Zone Commission is cracking down on lodging properties not paying their share of room sales taxes. Three different agreements at the end of 2016, including a circuit court decision, were in favor of the commission, resulting in thousands of dollars in overdue room sales taxes being paid back from lodging providers in Gibraltar and Egg Harbor. Especially with the growth of social lodging sites like Airbnb and VRBO, Tourism Zone Commission Chair Josh VanLieshout says they have to remain vigilant in their efforts to protect those who are reporting their room sales tax collections and occupied room numbers accurately.



In 2015, the Door County Tourism Zone's 5.5 percent room sales taxes resulted in $4.13 million in funds that were distributed to the commission's 19 participating municipalities and the Door County Visitors Bureau. People interested in renting their property for short-term stays can contact the Door County Tourism Zone Commission to obtain a free permit.

Troy Haws Named New Principal At Luxemburg-Casco High School

By Paul Schmitt

The Luxemburg-Casco High School has named Troy Haws as the full-time Principal effective yesterday.  The school district had been spreading the principal responsibilities between three staff members including Haws since the beginning of the school year after Adam Kurth left over the summer for a position in Cedarburg.  Luxemburg-Casco School Superintendent Glenn Schlender says Haws has the perfect traits for the job.



Haws has nearly three decades of experience as an educator with most recent positions as the dean of students at the middle school and this year at the high school.  A Native of Two Rivers, Haws began in the Luxemburg-Casco School District as a teacher in the fall of 1994.

Nominations For Golden Heart Volunteer Celebration Being Accepted

By Tim Kowols

Area organizations will once again have the opportunity to honor the people who make their efforts possible when the Volunteer Center of Door County hosts its 15th Annual Golden Heart Volunteer Celebration. Volunteers in five different categories recognizing groups, environmental stewards, and others will be chosen from the nomination process going on now. Executive director Carrie Tjernagel says it is a great way for the outstanding work going on in Door County get recognized.



Nominations for the awards are due February 10. The 15th Annual Golden Heart Volunteer Celebration takes place April 20 at Stone Harbor Resort in Sturgeon Bay.

Students Loans Becoming Intergenerational If Not Addressed

By Tim Kowols

Students beginning their higher education journey are being encouraged to keep a closer eye on their potential loan debt before they even take their first course. According to the Washington Post, older Americans are taking out loans to help out their kids and grandkids pay for school at a pace eight times more than they did just 10 years ago, totaling $66.7 billion in 2015. Gay Pustaver from Money Management Counselors suggests students stay current with their school-related finances and not put it off completely until after graduation.



After working in financial aid offices for many years before joining Money Management Counselors, Pustaver became one of the first 50 certified student loan debt advisors in the country last year. You can listen to the entire Money Management Monday interview with Gay Pustaver online with this story.


Sturgeon Bay Mayor: Lawsuit Costing TID Hundreds Of Thousands Of Dollars In Tax Revenue

By Tim Kowols

Its lawsuit against the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront is costing the city more than just money spent in legal fees according to Mayor Thad Birmingham. According to a letter posted on the city's Facebook page, the lawsuit is costing Tax Increment District #4, the area slated for redevelopment, $225,000 per year in property tax revenue from proposed projects like the hotel and the brewpub. The letter also states the TID, expected to generate $20 million of new property value, has had to forego nearly $1 million that would have been used for public improvements. City administrator Josh VanLieshout told last November the proposed development would go a long way in improving Sturgeon Bay's west side.



The Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront challenge the city with violating the Public Trust Doctrine with parts of its development due to the location of the area's ordinary high water mark. Our call to Birmingham Monday afternoon seeking further comment was unreturned. You can read the letter and see pictures of the proposed development online with this story.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html] [soundcloud widget_name="Soundcloud" display_title="no" url="" width="1/1" el_position="first last"]

Town Of Lincoln To Begin Water Treatment Study

By Tim Kowols

The town of Lincoln is moving forward with a plan taking aim at the area's water concerns. Five homeowners are participating in a pilot study that will collect data on the water being used before and after it runs through the building's whole house water treatment system. Town of Lincoln supervisor Nick Cochart says the data collected will give area officials and residents alike a look into the problems it faces with its water.


Cochart says it will collect data for six months after the system's installation before presenting its findings. Further expansion of the whole house water treatment system program  in the town of Lincoln will depend on the success of the pilot study.

Egg Harbor Looking Into Potential Bike Share Program

By Tim Kowols

A new bike share program could be on its way to Egg Harbor. Still in the very early stages, the village's parks and public works committee discussed the possibility at its January meeting. The village would purchase the bikes and allow residents and visitors to rent them at various locations to ride around the area. Village administrator Ryan Heise says it was met with good reviews during the meeting, but stressed that there are still a lot of details to work out before it heads to the full board for approval.



According to the committee minutes, the bid to help start the program with 20- 7 speed bikes with baskets would cost about $6,500 total. According to, there are 76 similar programs in the United States, including Madison and Milwaukee.

League Of Women Voters Of Door County's "Wisconsin Move To Amend" Discussion Coming January 31

By Paul Schmitt

The League of Women Voters of Door County's first program of the year will be a discussion at the Sturgeon Bay Library on "The Wisconsin Move to Amend" addressing the Citizens United legislation.   League of Women Voters of Door County member Nancy Fisher explains the focus of the meeting.



The League of Women Voters program will be held in the Jane Green Room at the Library on late Tuesday afternoon, January 31.  For more information on the League of Women Voters of Door County go to

Initial Or Full Property Tax Payments Due By End Of January

By Paul Schmitt

As the property tax deadline is approaching on January 31, municipalities and townships are reminding taxpayers to make sure they get at least there initial payment in by the end of the month.  Algoma City Administrator Jeff Wiswell explains what happens If people do not make any payment.



After January 31, the City of Algoma will then do what is called a "settlement", in which the city settles with the different taxing units like the school board and Kewaunee County.

Door County Visitors Bureau Hosting National Journalists Next Weekend To Showcase The Peninsula

By Paul Schmitt

The Door County Visitors Bureau has a chance to showcase the area when they host a media marketing program with journalists from all around the country later this month.  Director of Communications and Public Relations Jon Jarosh says it offers Door County an opportunity to garner national exposure.



Jarosh says the hope is to do some snow-shoeing and cross-country skiing if weather permits.  The Visitors Bureau plans on seven trips throughout 2017.  The first DCVB media marketing program is planned for next weekend.

Freezing Ice And Standing Water On Farm Fields May Effect Crops Later This Spring

By Paul Schmitt

The recent ice storm was not only bad for the conditions of area roads but was not good news to area farmers concerned about their fields and the potential to negatively affecting future crops.  Jim Wautier from Church Site Farms in Brussels explains the bad case scenario.



The lack of sufficient snow cover can also compound the issue.  Farmer's fields of alfalfa and winter wheat crops need protecting until the proper time of germination in the spring when temperatures remain mainly above freezing.

Old-Time Communications Featured In New Maritime Museum Exhbit

By Tim Kowols

An outdated communications system will take center stage as a new temporary exhibit opens next week at the Door County Maritime Museum. "Telegraphs to the Past" will look at how voice pipes, telegraphs, and sound powered telephones allowed crew members to talk to each other throughout a ship. Curator Adam Gronke says it is a great way to experience how crew members would have talked to each other when older ships like its docked Tug John Purves were still in operation.



The exhibit will be located in the upper lobby of the Door County Maritime Museum's Sturgeon Bay campus. It opens January 27 and set to close tentatively on November 3.

Sturgeon Bay Middle School Starting New Semester With "Innovation Hour" Opportunity For Students

By Paul Schmitt

As the second semester of classes begins for area schools, T.J. Walker Middle School is implementing a new "innovation hour" for students who have a resource period.  Sturgeon Bay School Superintendent Dan Tjernagel explains how the new opportunity for students works.



Tjernagel believes the new "innovation hour" can act like a pilot program that complements the goals of personalized learning and high levels of engagement that the school is seeking.

Financial Power Of Attorney Is Important Aspect To Estate Plans--Part II of Series

By Paul Schmitt

When it comes to important documents included in your estate plan, the durable financial power of attorney is a key component to have in place.  The power of attorney allows for someone else to manage your finances in the event you become incapacitated and are unable to make those decisions yourself.  Attorney Stacy Vogeltanz from Ross Estate Planning in Sturgeon Bay says the spouse does not automatically have access to all financial accounts.



Vogeltanz recommends that if anyone places one of their children as the financial power of attorney it should not necessarily be the oldest but rather the one you feel is most fiscally qualified to handle your financial issues.  This is the second in a series on the power of attorney, last week dealt with health care power of attorney.

Former Sturgeon Bay Teacher Shares Tradition Of Taking Students To Presidential Inauguration

By Paul Schmitt

Former Sturgeon Bay resident Mike Taylor accompanied a group of graduate students to the Inauguration of President Donald J. Trump Friday.  Taylor is an associate professor at the University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota.  He credits the idea, having students see how open government works first hand, to the time he was a teacher and principal in Sturgeon Bay.



Taylor, who attended four previous presidential inaugurations, says this one was by far the most unique.



Taylor says that his group saw some peaceful protests while in Washington when they arrived but did note that the inaugural parade was delayed for one hour on Friday afternoon due to a disturbance.

(photo compliments of Mike Taylor)

Birch Creek Music Performance Center Presenting Special Jazz Concert On Valentine's Weekend

By Paul Schmitt

Birch Creek Music Performance Center in Door County is offering a special performance the Saturday evening before Valentine's Day again this year.  Executive Director Mona Christensen shares the details of the show called "Matters of the Hearts Club Jazz".



Christensen says two of the three performers are faculty members at the Birch Creek Music Performance Center.  For ticket information on the special musical concert "Matters of the Hearts Club Jazz" at Juniper Hall, go to this story online.

Sturgeon Bay Women Arrested For Allegedly Giving Nitrous Oxide To Daughter

By Paul Schmitt

A Sturgeon Bay woman was arrested last Wednesday for allegedly giving nitrous oxide to her six year-old daughter.  According to the Door County Advocate, Katherine Johnson Link appeared in Door County District Court for a bond hearing on Thursday and will face potential multiple felony charges of child abuse and neglect when she appears in court on Monday.  An anonymous person reported concerns to authorities who then conducted a home search and subsequent arrest.  Johnson Link is the wife of Steven P. Link who was sentenced to 90 months in a federal prison for child pornography in June of 2015.


(Photo by Door County Sheriff Department)

Community Advocate Shares Eau Claire's Waterfront Development Success Story From 2015 Visit

By Paul Schmitt

Community advocate and freelance writer Laurel Hauser says the city of Sturgeon Bay can learn from communities like Eau Claire and Wisconsin Rapids on the processes to engage the public in making big decisions on waterfront development.  Hauser organized a group of 12 Sturgeon Bay citizens that visited Eau Claire in the spring of 2015.  Hauser explains what impressed her most after visiting with city officials and developers.



Hauser singled out communities like Sister Bay, Jacksonport, and Baileys Harbor in the area as examples of municipalities that have figured out how best to develop their key properties.  The written report from the Eau Claire/Phoenix Park visit from 2015 is posted below.



Submitted Report on Eau Claire/Phoenix Park Visit:


In recent years, Eau Claire turned a contaminated brownfield site into the cornerstone of a vibrant downtown that includes Royal Credit Union headquarters, JAMF Software, Riverview Apartments, Phoenix Park and Farmers Market. Eau Claire received the National Civic League's All-American City Award not only for the 50 million dollar valuation they've injected into their downtown, but for the process they used to do it.


A group of eleven citizens spent three hours touring Phoenix Park and hearing presentations by city officials including the Council President, Redevelopment Authority Chair, Economic Development Director, City Attorney and Parks and Recreation Director. In addition to City representatives, the group heard from developers that have invested heavily in downtown. Finally, the group met the director of the Farmers Market Association.


Key components of Eau Claire's success:


Community Input: Over 1 – 2 years, Eau Claire held 57 meetings to solicit community input and ensure that proposed changes were true to the city's strategic plan and vision.


Citizen Advocates: A Farmers Market and Labyrinth were on the community's wish list. The city worked with "citizen advocates" who raised funds to make each happen. The Farmers Market draws up to 7,000 visitors a week.


Natural Resources: According to Council President Kerry Kincaid, the Eau Claire community cares strongly about its river.  She advises, "Ask yourself what relationship you want to have with your most important natural resource? People value the water, and we are working to provide as much visible and physical access to it as possible." Eau Claire's city parks are connected by 29 miles of trails, second only to Madison. Eau Claire is actively engaged in extending its public space.


Private/Public Partnership: The Royal Credit Union (RCU) first intended to build directly on the river. After hearing from the community, they moved off the river, allowing space for Phoenix Park. According to RCU's Randy Beck, "When we found out people wanted a park, we made it happen. A happy community is good for business." RCU and next-door neighbor, JAMF Software, now overlook an attractive green space. Bikers and walkers are visible on the repurposed railway bridge that spans the Chippewa River and JAMF Software has even installed an air pump for the tubers who float past their office. Eau Claire calls JAMF a "home run" for the city because it is non-polluting, high growth and pays high wages. JAMF brings energy to the downtown with a young work force that embodies "new urbanism." JAMF is a dog-friendly office and many of the employees walk or bike to work.


Downtown Residents: Riverview Terrace Apartments built three new structures across from Phoenix Park.  The 111 apartments enjoy a near 100% occupancy rate. When asked what part the park and water view played in their decision to invest, developer Stuart Shaefer said, "It was the deciding factor. People want to live near the park."


TIF Districts: Phoenix Park was funded, in part, by tax incremental financing. Steve Nick, City Attorney, stressed the need to make sure development is consistent with city goals, to do background checks on developers and, if possible, to get developers' lenders to the table. He emphasized the need for a good fit and asked, "Who are you going to sell your valuable land to?"


By all accounts, Eau Claire's hard work has paid off. Children laughed and chased each other over the boulders that line the shoreline. Walkers and bikers were out en masse enjoying the views at the confluence of the Chippewa and Eau Claire Rivers. Attractive office buildings and apartments stand side-by-side and street-level retail establishments service the people who live and work in the area.


For all their success, Nick acknowledges that there have been some detractors. "There will always be some. It means you're making things happen. When nothing was happening, no one was protesting the brownfield. But, if you're doing what the community wants, there will be more supporters." President Kincaid's final words: "Encourage civic engagement, let the natural beauty of the area speak to you and be patient with each other."


Sturgeon Bay Resident Participates In "Women's March On Washington" Saturday

By Paul Schmitt

The Women's March on Washington concluded Saturday afternoon and Sturgeon Bay resident Virg Temme was one of the estimated one-half a million marchers who participated.  Temme describes the crowded scene arriving on the metro in downtown Washington, D.C. early Saturday morning.



Temme estimated that the all-inclusive march included one man for every woman.  The Women's March on Washington was an attempt to unify protesters after the inauguration of President Donald Trump around issues like women rights, immigration, and civil rights. The main event began at 10 am on Saturday with a rally and speakers and then a march down the National Mall.

Door County Medical Center, City Work Together For More Sidewalks

By Tim Kowols

The city of Sturgeon Bay and Door County Medical Center will work together to upgrade sidewalks near the hospital's campus. During his presentation of the city's five-year capital plan and roadway improvements, city engineer Chad Shefchik told the Board of Public Works that Door County Medical Center wanted to incorporate new sidewalks into its plan to develop walking trails on its campus. Shefchik said the city would work to tie in the new sidewalks with the existing network.



The new sidewalks would be constructed along South 18th Ave., Rhode Island Street, and South 16th Place, with the bulk of the project being picked up by the hospital. Shefchik said the idea to build the sidewalks came from the Door County Medical Center's health and wellness committee to improve the fitness opportunities on its campus.

Large Contingent From Door County Attending "Women's March On Madison" Today

By Paul Schmitt

A bus load of 54 Door County residents is participating at The Women's March on Madison today where estimates of 7,000 to 10,000 people will be attending.  Organizer of the bus trip Dawn Patel says the march is for all people supporting women and minority right.



The March, which is in solidarity to the March on Washington, D.C, runs from noon until 3 pm. Other organized events in the afternoon will follow including music and a flash mob, according to Patel.

(Photo compliments of Brilliant Stranger)


(Photo compliments of Cathy Grier)


(Cover photo compliments of Kathleen Finerty)

Packer Playoff Party Purchases Means A Bigger Boost In Sales For Area Grocery Stores

By Paul Schmitt

As the Green Bay Packers continue to run the table and win playoffs games, area businesses find that the success is on the field is helping translate to bigger and better retail sales.  Alex Stodola, owner of Stodola' s IGA in Luxemburg says every additional Packer weekend is a boom to several of his departments in-store.



Stodola estimates that most Packer party purchases are made the morning of the game.  The Packers-Falcons NFC championship game kick-off is set for 2 pm central time on Sunday.

Local Environmental Group Form Coalition To Protect Water

By Tim Kowols

A coalition of local environmental groups is forming to address the issues of water quality in Door and Kewaunee counties. Protect Our Water (POW!) will collaborate on protecting water as both an environmental issue and a community health concern as well. Lynn Utesch from POW! and Kewaunee CARES says a lot of organizations are signing on to join the group because of the lack of progress being made.



Utesch says there has been interest from organizations from outside the county to join the coalition, but will wait until after POW! officially forms before admitting them and getting to work on issues in the region.

Dr. Joe Binard Adding "Beekeeper" To His List Of Accomplishments

By Paul Schmitt

The Door County Beekeepers Club has just added a doctor to its membership to help promote the ecological benefits of bees.    Dr. Joe Binard of Brussels is taking on the new challenging hobby and says his interest in bees goes back many years.



Dr. Binard says he will be utilizing the flow method of Beekeeping, in which the bees are not disturbed while the honey is being harvested.  Binard just completed his new hive for beekeeping and is now waiting on his order of Italian Bees which should arrive in late March.  For information on the Door County Beekeepers Club, go to the link below:

Council Members To Wait and See Word From City's Insurer On Litigation Costs

By Tim Kowols

The Sturgeon Bay Common Council is very interested to hear what the city's insurance provider has to say about its coverage limit. City administrator Josh VanLieshout told the council the news that it would ask the League of Wisconsin Municipalities Mutual Insurance Company to extend its insurance coverage limit after spending close to $100,000 in legal fees through two claims associated with its suit against the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront. Alderperson David Ward spoke of his experience in lawsuits against municipalities in the past, but the told the council it must be aware of the possibilities ahead of trial.



Fellow alderperson Will Gregory was in disbelief that the city went through so much money so fast.



VanLieshout told the council that it was likely the number of depositions and expert testimonies given for the case led to the increased legal fees. He hopes to hear back from the insurer within a week. The case heads to trial February 9 after Judge Raymond Huber denied the summary judgments for both the city and the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront last week.

Rare Virus Carried By Domestic Rats Contracted By Two Individuals In Manitowoc County

By Paul Schmitt

Wisconsin's Department of Health Services is investigating two illnesses in Manitowoc County caused by the Seoul virus, which is a very rare type of hantavirus carried by Norway rats.  The individuals were exposed to the rats at a rat breeder.  Symptoms may vary but include abdominal pain, chills, blurred vision, redness of eyes and rashes.  Severe cases can lead to an acute renal disease that could be fatal. Director of the Wisconsin Bureau of Communicable Diseases Stephanie Smiley says if you have had contacted with domestic rats watch for symptoms over a long period of time.



One of the infected persons had to hospitalized, but both have since recovered.   Illinois Department of Public Health has reported six cases of the Seoul virus as well.  For a list of ways to avoid becoming ill with diseases carried by rodents,  go to

Door County Board To Vote On Senior Center Bid, Supervisor Appointment Next Week

By Tim Kowols

The Door County Property and Finance committees have named their choice to lead the construction of the new senior center and central ambulance station. De Pere-based IEI Contractors were chosen with a bid of $8.1 million, which was about $900,000 less than originally budgeted. Door County Administrator Ken Pabich says pending board approval, the project could start as soon as next month.



Pabich believes the project could be completed and ready for occupancy by this time next year. The Door County Board will meet next Tuesday to approve the contracts and financing for the project. The supervisors will also vote on the appointment of Laura Wotachek to the vacant seat on the board recently held by the late Richard Haines.

Ambient Instruments Featured In New Hans Christian Album

By Tim Kowols

Musician Hans Christian had to do a lot of experimentation while he recorded and produced his new album featuring gongs and Tibetan bowls. After crowds clamored for a recording of the ambient music after live shows, Christian went to see if his compositions would translate to the studio. Christian says the experience challenged him as a musician, a producer, and a recording engineer.



The new album, "Sources" is available for purchase online now and could be heard via streaming services on February 1. Christian will celebrate the new release with a concert February 9 at Studio 330 in Sturgeon Bay beginning at 7 p.m.

Bay Shipbuilding's "Winter Fleet" Arriving This Week In Sturgeon Bay--VIDEO & SCHEDULE

By Paul Schmitt

The arrival of the "winter fleet" has made its way to Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay.  The Great Lakes freighters started coming in on Monday with the Edwin H. Gott, a 1004-foot vessel.  Two other 1,000 footers, The James R. Baker along with the Walter J McCarthy arrived on Tuesday.  Vice-President and General Manager Todd Thayse says having the big freighters all come in within a couple days presents some challenges for the shipyard.



Two other vessels are expected this week with another two cargo ships arriving next week to round out the 2017 Winter Fleet.  For a complete schedule of freighters that have or will be at Bay Shipbuilding for maintenance and repair, go to this story online.


Schedule compliments of Door County Maritime Museum:


Kewaunee County Unveils State Biogas Plant Project Web Site

By Tim Kowols

In an effort to be as transparent as possible, Kewaunee County has unveiled a Web site has dedicated to the current progress of a proposed biogas plant in the area. The Web site, linked to the county's page, features press releases, emails, and meeting transcripts on the estimated $20 million project aimed at converting liquid manure into a renewable energy source and improving groundwater quality. Kewaunee County Board Chairperson Robert Weidner says with a project that has been short on details so far, no one should be left in the dark.



The state biogas plant project Web site will be updated as new material is available. Weidner does not expect a whole lot of new details to come out until after proposals are returned May 1.

Michigan Street Bridge Opening Delayed One Week

By Tim Kowols

The Michigan Street Bridge scheduled re-opening for Friday has now been delayed until next Thursday, January 26, according to an announcement by the Department of Transportation Thursday afternoon. The historic bridge has been closed since January 3 to repair damaged beams from an April 2016 incident involving a semi towing a backhoe. Mark Kantola from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation explains the reason for the delay.

Kantola says the DOT waited the nearly nine months to make repairs to the Michigan Street Bridge to lessen the impact the work would have on marine and motor vehicle traffic.

Support Strong Locally For Farm Technology Days

By Tim Kowols

It takes more than just volunteers to help fund a three-day event expected to bring 45,000 people to Kewaunee County this summer. The fundraising committee for Kewaunee County Farm Technology Days has been working with non-profit groups, farmers, and small and large businesses alike to make sure the event is a success. Fundraising chairperson Sarah Englebert says it has been great to see the enthusiasm people have for Farm Technology Days coming to their community.



Englebert added that any money raised from the event will stay in Kewaunee County, helping fund individual projects and organizations. Kewaunee County Farm Technology Days will take place July 11 to 13 at Ebert Enterprises in Algoma.


Group Hopes To Turn Door County Into A Disc Golf Destination

By Tim Kowols

A Northern Door County business owner is rallying fellow disc golfers to make the area a destination for the sport. The village of Sister Bay has already committed to constructing a nine-hole course at its sports complex while Door Disc Golf Club founder and Julie's Park Cafe and Motel owner Shane Solomon has approached a private land owner and officials in Baileys Harbor and Egg Harbor about creating spaces of their own. Solomon hopes the privately funded endeavor gets people from the around the area outside and others from across the country to help turn Door County into a disc golf mecca.



The new disc golf course will be installed at the Sister Bay Sports Complex when the ground thaws. Solomon hopes in the next three to five years that the group can help build a championship-caliber course in Door County. You can learn more about Door Disc Golf Club and how to get involved online with this story.

Managing Student Loans--A Major Challenge As Debt Continues To Grow --Part I Of Series

By Paul Schmitt

Student loan debt continues to rise and the national statistics show that the challenge of managing the debt is growing.  According to the latest reports, Americans owe nearly $1.3 trillion in student loan debt.  Last year's graduates averaged over $37,000 in loan debt which reflected a six percent increase over 2015.  We Are HOPE of Door County CEO Sandy Duckett says that the new leaders in the U.S. Congress need to make changes to the system to help students manage their debt.



Duckett recommends that students should visit with advisors at organizations like Money Management Counselors before taking out financial loans.  Students loan payments have exceeded home mortgage payments in some cases, according to Duckett.  This is the first in a weekly series on the managing student loan debt.

Area Highway Departments Dealing With Re-Freezing of Ice On Area Roads

By Paul Schmitt

The Door County Highway Department was challenged to keep area roads safe during the recent icy conditions.  Patrol Superintendent Thad Ash says crews were busy since Monday night dealing with the re-freezing of roads due to the colder ground temperatures.



Trucks will continue putting down sand for the next day to improve traction in areas of need, according to Ash.  One highway department truck slid into the ditch and is out of commission with minor damage for a few days, according to Ash.  The department utilizes about 18 trucks and eight graders around Door County, during a snow or ice removal process.

Ice Fishing Still The Best And Safest Along The Harbors In Door County

By Paul Schmitt

Changing weather conditions have made it a little more challenging for Ice Fishing Anglers in January.  Fishing Guide JJ Malvitz says although not many anglers are not venturing off shore, the perch and northern pike bite is doing well in the local harbors.



Malvitz says anglers are having the best success in the early morning and evening hours for the perch bite.   For the most recent Door County Ice Fishing Report with JJ Malvitz, click below:



Gibraltar DECA Students Claim 26 Awards At District Level Competition

By Paul Schmitt

Gibraltar business students earned 26 awards at the District DECA Career Conference last Saturday at Bay Port High School.  Fifteen students from Gibraltar competed with ten receiving awards.  Mary Witteborg, Marketing and Business Education teacher and DECA Advisor says the Gibraltar contingent fared very well.



Gibraltar will now advance to the State Career Development Conference in March with the opportunity to go on to compete at the International CDC in Anaheim, California in April.



(News Release)


DECA, an Association of Marketing, Management and Entrepreneurship Students.


Fifteen business students competed at the Northeast Wisconsin District DECA Career Development Conference on Saturday, January 14 at Bayport High School.  Ten students earned 26 awards in seven different career concentrations.  Each competitor took a 100 questions career specific exam and participated in two role play scenarios with judges from throughout NE Wisconsin.


Freshman Brandon Stillman, son of Greg and Denise Stillman, earned first place in the Principles of Hospitality and Tourism Series by medaling in all three events;  Hospitality Cluster Exam, Customer Service role play and the Communications role play.


Senior Nathan Surges, son of Jim and Kathy Surges, earned second place in the Apparel and Accessories Series medaling in all three events; Marketing Cluster Exam, Customer Relations role play and the Promotion role play.


Senior Connor Moore earned 3rd place in Business Finance and medaled in the Finance Exam and Financial Analysis role play.  Christopher Andersen earned two medals in Business Finance, also; the Finance Exam and Economics role play.


Senior Jon Kordon earned 4th place in Restaurant and Food Marketing series by medaling in the Hospitality Cluster Exam, Communications and Technology role play and the Promotion role play.  Senior Ian Moore also medaled in the exam and Promotion role play event.


Seniors Alexis Schnick and Amber Kelly earned two medals in the Marketing Management Series; Marketing Cluster Exam and the Product Management Role Play.


Senior Matt Scharrig earned two medals in Food Marketing; Marketing Cluster Exam and Promotion role play.


Brandon Emery-Janzen earned two medals in Human Resource Management; the Business Management and Administration Exam and the HRM Employee Relations role play.


Eight area business people judged at the conference; Teri Berndt, Lynn Herman, Mike Peot, Jim Jordan, Phil and Christine Salmon, Caitlyn Oleson, and Bob Loss.  Berndt, Herman, Jordan, C.Salmon, Loss, Claudia Scimeca and Rich Geils also mentored the competitors prior to the competitions.  Their adviser, Mary Witteborg, coordinated practice sessions and mentored students in preparation for their events  She also states that to have a 67% success rate of student participants is an outstanding achievement.  Seven students go on to compete at the State Career Development Conference in March.  State Champions go on to compete at the International CDC in Anaheim in April.




Photo submitted: Front Row L-R:  Nathan Surges, Brandon Stillman, Amber Kelly, Alexis Schnick and Connor Moore.  Back Row:  Brandon Emery-Janzen, Topher Andersen, Jon Kordon and Matt Scharrig.

Kewaunee Power Plant And Town Of Carlton Agreement Would Spread $50 Million "Charge Back" Over 10 Years

By Paul Schmitt

The town of Carlton's initial agreement Saturday with Dominion Resources, the shuttered Kewaunee Power Plant, will have major tax implications for residents of Kewaunee County.  If approved, the signed agreement sets the parcel's value at $15 million for ten years from 2015 through 2024. The town of Carlton originally assessed the value at $468 million dollars in 2016.   Kewaunee County Administrator Scott Feldt says Dominion would now receive a "charge back" for the additional millions of dollars of taxes they paid based on last year's assessment.  Feldt says that Dominion's agreement to spread the impact out over ten years will alleviate a potentially catastrophic consequence.



Feldt says the increase would amount to $5 million dollars for the county that will be paid out at a rate of $500,000 over ten years.  The agreement needs to be approved by the presiding judge who was going to hear the trial case next month and the Wisconsin Department of Revenue.

United To Amend-Door County Set To Fight For Campaign Finance Reform Locally

By Tim Kowols

A non-partisan effort to take the money out of politics is brewing in Door County. United to Amend-Door County is organizing an informational meeting January 31 to gather residents frustrated with the amount of money spent to influence elections. Dan Powers from United to Amend Door County says if people want to help change the U.S. Supreme Court's 2010 decision to allow corporations and outside groups to donate large amounts of money to political campaigns, it has to start on a local level.



Co-sponsored by the League of Women Voters, the informational meeting will start inside the Door County Library in Sturgeon Bay beginning at 4:30 p.m.

Insurance Coverage Limit For City's West Waterfront Lawsuit Running Out

By Tim Kowols

The insurance coverage limit for the city of Sturgeon Bay's litigation against the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront is running out.  According to city administrator Josh VanLieshout, almost $100,000 in legal fees have already been spent on its federal and state claims with at least another $20,000 possible for the trial set in February. VanLieshout told the Common Council that he has asked the League of Wisconsin Municipalities Mutual Insurance Company, the city's insurer, for a possible extension in coverage. He assured the council that any costs to wrap up the trial phase would not come out of Sturgeon Bay's general fund, but charged to Tax Increment District #4 if additional coverage was not granted.



Alderperson Kelly Catarozoli accused the city of not informing the Common Council well enough about its finances and possible solutions through mediation.



According to VanLieshout, hotel developer Bob Papke has given his notice of concern regarding the city's ability to fulfill its portion of the development agreement. No official action is expected to take place until after the city hears back from the League of Wisconsin Municipalities Mutual Insurance Company about a possible extension in coverage.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html] [vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html]

Door County Reads Kicks Off Tenth Year With "Empire Falls"

By Tim Kowols

The Door County Library is celebrating ten years of its area-reading program with a Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Door County Reads has been picking a book for residents to read together since it first chose John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath in 2008 as a part of grant received from the National Endowment for the Arts. As the grant money dried up, librarian Tracy Vreeke says the county wanted to keep the program going while allowing it an opportunity to take some chances with its reading list.



This year's selection is Richard Russo's Empire Falls, a story about a man who endures a lot of drama in a shuttering factory town as the owner of a local diner. You can learn more about the upcoming events associated with this year's Door County Reads book, including its January 23 kick-off celebration online with this story.

[soundcloud widget_name="Soundcloud" display_title="no" url="" width="1/1" el_position="first last"]

UW-Extension Future Still Unknown

By Tim Kowols

The revamping of the University of Wisconsin-Extension is still underway two years after it learned it would experience a $3.6 million budget cut. Reorganization efforts started last fall to help streamline some of their services by developing multi-county areas for much of the state. Rob Burke from the Door County UW-Extension says no one really knows what to expect until the reorganization committee announces their new recommendations at the Wisconsin Counties Association Legislative Conference February 7 and 8.


In early reorganization conversations, Door, Kewaunee, and Manitowoc counties would form one of several integrated units. UW-Extension offices in larger counties such as Brown and Dane would remain their own separate entities.

Wautier Named Door County Firefighter Of The Year

By Tim Kowols

After 32 years on the job, Brussels-Union-Gardner Assistant Fire Chief Jim Wautier is getting the additional recognition he deserves. Wautier was honored last week as the Door-Kewaunee Fire Association Firefighter of the Year for Door County at a ceremony held in Algoma. The honor was unexpected by the Brussels man who also farms when he is not at the firehouse.



BUG Fire Chief Curt Vandertie calls Wautier "an effective communicator" and lauded him for taking "responsibility to get involved in all aspects of the department and always displays a strong personal commitment to successfully completing any tasks necessary." Wautier has been the assistant fire chief for the department for the last 27 years.

Agreement Reached On Tax Assessed Value Of Kewaunee Power Plant Between Owner And Town Of Carlton

By Paul Schmitt

The town of Carlton avoided an upcoming trial and reached an agreement with the owner of the closed Kewaunee Nuclear Plant on the valuation and taxes on the facility.  According to Carlton Clerk Linda Sinkula, the agreement reached on Saturday will have the parcel's value at $15 million for the ten-year period for tax years of 2015-2024.  The town of Carlton had assessed the property at $468 million in 2016.  The complete settlement agreement is below:




Packers "Golden Girl" To Be Featured In NFL Films Episode Tonight on Fox Sports 1

By Paul Schmitt

The original Green Bay Packer "Golden Girl" Mary Jane Sorgel of Sturgeon Bay will be featured tonight on the NFL Film's episode on a national cable program.  The show is called "Memories" and will premiere at 5 pm on Fox Sports 1, channel 32 on local cable systems.  Sorgel , a Sturgeon Bay native, says the show will include footage outside of Lambeau Field by the statues of Vince Lombardi and Curly Lambeau, who was engaged to Sorgel before he died.



Sorgel who was Mary Jane Van Duyse, started in 1949 as a drum majorette for the Packer Band as a teenager and later organized the cheerleaders known as the "Golden Girls" for many years.  The cheer "Go Pack Go" was originated by the "Golden Girls", according to Sorgel.  A national baton twirler champion, Sorgel worked for the Packer organization until 1972 and still does public appearances and shows locally.

(Photo contributed)


Financial Infidelity Becoming A Problem Among Couples

By Tim Kowols

With 72 percent of Americans stressed out about money according to the American Psychological Association, admitting to financial infidelity could help ease the tension on your bank account and your relationship. Financial infidelity usually includes missing tax and bill payments, overspending, or even not telling your partner about a gap in employment. Gay Pustaver from Money Management Counselors has seen it a lot and says couples should stay transparent with each other when it comes to their money.



Pustaver says that even if the conversation is uncomfortable, you have to do it with your spouse in order to foster some change.


Superintendent Hopes Legislators Focus On Rural School District Needs

By Tim Kowols

Southern Door Superintendent Patti Vickman hopes members of the Wisconsin Legislature keeps rural school districts in mind when it begins its 2017 session this week. While a cure for the state's school funding woes most likely will not be addressed by the Assembly or the Senate this session due to the amount of study and time members want to have before deciding on a solution, there are other issues that still remain. Vickman says raising the revenue limits, addressing broadband Internet issues in rural areas, and coordinating mental health services are all ideas she hopes get addressed.



According to Vickman, Southern Door School District's partnership with Door County Medical Center on its community clinic and its recent grants for technology improvements will be featured during this week's state education convention.

Eyes Focus On Gerrymandering In 2017

By Tim Kowols

The maps of electoral district boundaries around the country expect to be challenged once again in 2017. While many states are waiting on the United States Supreme Court to weigh in on the issue, Democrats in the Wisconsin Legislature led by Senator Dave Hansen are renewing their fight against partisan redistricting. Currently, district lines for federal and state races are drawn by the legislators in office, which Jay Heck from Common Cause Wisconsin says only hurts the voters.



Under the new redistricting reform bill currently being circulated, a nonpartisan committee would be charged with the task of updating the voting districts, similar to what is already being done in Iowa. A panel of U.S. District judges ruled in November that the current maps, drawn in 2011, violated the voting rights of Democratic voters and the decision is currently being appealed by the state.

Winter Weather Advisory Hits Area Bringing More Ice--CANCELLATIONS

By Tim Kowols

Roads expect to be slippery once again as northeast Wisconsin, including Door and Kewaunee counties, enters a winter weather advisory beginning Monday evening. According to the National Weather Service, a wintry mix will enter the area at around 5 p.m., bringing freezing rain that could build up to a quarter inch of ice and an additional one to three inches of sleet and snow. Kewaunee County Sheriff Matt Joski says drivers will have to be careful if they have to travel.



Joski recommends giving yourself plenty of time to get to your destination and also lots of space between you and other vehicles on the road. The winter weather advisory expires at noon on Tuesday.



School closings for Tuesday, January 17:
Gibraltar Area School District
Sevastopol School District
Southern Door School District
Sturgeon Bay School District
St. John Bosco School
Luxemburg-Casco School District and private schools
Kewaunee public and private schools
NWTC- Sturgeon Bay
St. Peter's Lutheran School
Zion Lutheran School: No early childhood
Algoma public and private schools


Other Closing/Delay Information
Sunshine House is open, but there will be no buses. Staff should report.
Adventures Childcare in Brussels is closed
Northern Door Children's Center in Sister Bay is closed
East Shore Industries in Algoma is closed
Kewaunee County meal sites are closed, no home deliveries
No 8 a.m. liturgy at Stella Maris in Sister Bay
The American Red Cross Blood Drive at St. Peter's Lutheran Church is cancelled.
We Are Hope, Inc. and the Door County Job Center is closed today.

State Legislators Prepare For Upcoming Session, Budget Cycle

By Tim Kowols

Wisconsin legislators go back to work this week as priorities begin to form for the upcoming budget cycle. Governor Scott Walker has not released his final budget plan, but highlighted items like cutting taxes, improving schools, and reforming welfare during his State of the State Address last week. Joint Finance Committee Chairperson and State Rep. John Nygren expects the upcoming session to have an additional focus on transportation funding and workforce development.



The legislative session calendar shows state Assembly and Senate members in Madison for floor periods several times in the opening months of the year, including January 17 to 19, February 7 to 9, and March 7 to 9. According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel in November, the state expects a $693 million shortfall in the upcoming budget.

Insurance For West Waterfront Lawsuit Up For Discussion At Tuesday's Common Council Meeting

By Tim Kowols

The pending lawsuit between the city of Sturgeon Bay and the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront expects to take up most of the time during Tuesday's Common Council meeting. After considering the city's bills and the consent agenda, the Sturgeon Bay Common Council will consider the insurance coverage for its litigation against the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront, which dates back to when the group first filed its federal lawsuit in September of 2015. No additional information about the consideration concerning the insurance coverage has been made public since the city posted the council agenda packet on Friday. The council will end the meeting in closed session to discuss strategy with the city's legal counsel. Judge Raymond Huber of Waupaca County denied the summary judgments of both the city and the group last Tuesday, setting the stage for the trial to begin on February 9.

Lack Of Domestic Abuse Reporting Caused By Many Factors

By Paul Schmitt

Victims of domestic abuse will more often than not, remain in a relationship after numerous incidents despite the risk to their health and well-being.  Help of Door County Executive Director Steve Vickman states that statistics show that it takes at least eight incidents before someone will decide to leave an abusive situation.  Vickman says there are a variety of reasons the abused person does not leave.



Vickman also says the abused person may still loves the abuser and believes they will change.  "Gas Lighting" is a behavior where the victim is tricked into believing the abusive behavior is normal and that it is their behavior that is wrong.  Financial, religious or a lack of self-esteem issues can also lead to not reporting domestic abuse cases, according to Vickman.  For information on assistance offered by Help of Door County, go to

"Dollar Cost Averaging" A Solid Investment Strategy As Dow Jones Continues To Approach Record 20,000

By Paul Schmitt

The Stock Market has been flirting with the 20,000 mark for the past couple weeks as investors speculate on the potential outlook for 2017.  Casey St. Henry from Thrivent Financial in Sturgeon Bay says a good rule of thumb no matter where the market stands is to be consistent in your investing.



St. Henry recommends meeting with a financial professional and having a well-thought plan and strategy before investing in the stock market.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened at 19,912.54 last Friday.

Agenda Item Ideas Wanted For Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days

By Claire Thompson

Door/Kewaunee County Legislative Days is a biennial trip to the state capitol in Madison that bring issues of local concern directly to state elected officials and government agency leaders.

We are currently asking the community to submit issues for our 2017 legislative and state agency agendas. The Steering Committee will consider all issues and shape the final agenda.

An issue should meet three criteria: It should be "local" and have unique implications for Door and Kewaunee Counties. The issue should enjoy broad community support. And, the issue needs State action or support to be resolved.

For more information on Door Kewaunee County Legislative Days and how to submit issues for consideration, go to


Washington Island Ferry Weathering The Winter

By Tim Kowols

Weather in the New Year has not been a friend to the captains of the Washington Island Ferry. The schedule has already had to be altered a few times due to heavy icing conditions through Death's Door. Washington Island Ferry President Hoyt Purinton says the trouble comes from the warm water meeting the frigid air temperatures.


Purinton says the icing conditions have also had other negative effects.



The Washington Island Ferry is currently in their winter schedule with two trips to and from the island occurring daily. If you plan on bringing your car onto the ferry, reservations must be made in advance.

Bay-Lakes Area Council Looks Ahead With Imagine 2024

By Tim Kowols

Hard decisions are being made to ensure a brighter future for Boy Scouts in northeast Wisconsin. Bay-Lakes Area Council, which covers 21 Wisconsin counties including Door and Kewaunee, first introduced Imagine 2024 in 2013 as a way to develop a new 10-year plan by reviewing its properties and programs. Since then, the council sold its camp in Hancock, Wis. and the northern portion of the JAX Camp located near Sturgeon Bay as it allocates that money towards future projects within the council. Voyageur Senior District Executive Christopher O'Brien says scouts and others are already reaping the benefits.



Over 3,100 scouts are involved in the Voyageur District, including those in three Kewaunee County and ten Door County communities.


Kewaunee County Board To Consider Putting Their Support Behind DNR Workgroup Recommendations

By Tim Kowols

The Kewaunee County Board will vote on a resolution Thursday that would officially state their support for implementing the recommendations made by the Department of Natural Resources workgroups last year. Three workgroups focused on the short-term solutions, compliance, and best management practices associated with the groundwater issues in Kewaunee County. Passed by the Land and Water Conservation Committee earlier this month, Kewaunee County Board Member Lee Luft hopes these become more than just ideas written down on a piece of paper.



The DNR workgroups were made up of farmers, officials at all levels of government, and concerned citizens that met several times over the course of more than a year. If approved, the resolution will be sent to state and federal legislators and the department heads of agricultural and environmental-related agencies.

Farmers Look To Readying Equipment For Spring During Long Winter Months

By Paul Schmitt

Although area farmers are a few months from the planting season, life on the farm still can encompass long days of getting equipment and vehicles ready for the busy spring season.  Rich Olson of Olson Family Farms in southern Door County says he is just about ready to tackle some of those projects.




Olson says that it is important this time of year for snow cover to insulate area fields from soil erosion.  Potential damage to alfalfa and winter wheat crops due to frequent thawing and freezing temperatures is a concern for farmers as well, according to Olson.

Klett Calls Tourism "The Best Part Of Life" As State's Popularity Soars In Industry

By Tim Kowols

It is not curing cancer, but Wisconsin Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett says promoting the sights and sounds of the state is still the best part of life. Tourism is an over $19 billion industry in the state, growing over 30 percent in the last five years alone. Klett says there is a reason for that.



Specific to Door County, Klett hopes residents never take its beauty for granted, calling it a special place to visit each time despite traveling the state almost non-stop for the last 25 years.



Klett recently celebrated her 6th anniversary as the Wisconsin Tourism Secretary and recently appeared as the co-host of "Discover Wisconsin" where she visited Washington and Rock Islands.

"Power of Attorney" Important Aspect Of Estate Planning--Health Care--Part 1 of 2 Series

By Paul Schmitt

The Power of Attorney for Health Care is one of the most important documents one can include in his or her estate plan. The Power of Attorney for Health Care makes it possible for adults in Wisconsin to authorize other individuals to make health care decisions on their behalf should they become incapacitated.  Attorney Stacy Vogeltanz from Ross Estate Planning says authorization does not occur between spouses without the proper documentation or a drawn out process.

Vogeltanz says it is always a good idea to name back-ups for Power of Attorney in Health Care in case both parents are involved in an accident. This is the first in a two part series on Power of Attorney . The second in the series will be on the financial aspect of Power of Attorney and will be featured next Saturday.  

DCEDC Offers Entrepreneurial Planning Course

By Tim Kowols

The Door County Economic Development Corporation hopes to help aspiring entrepreneurs get on the right track when its annual business planning course begins later this month. In cooperation with the Wisconsin Small Business Development Center at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, the Door County Entrepreneurial Training P rogram helps businesses develop a plan from identifying and meeting market needs to responding to the changes that might affect. Sixty-seven percent of entrepreneurs have gone on from the class to start their own businesses in Door County, which executive director Caleb Frostman says is high when compared to the regional (54 percent) and statewide (48 percent) conversion rates.



The eight-week program begins January 23 and runs until March 20. Participants in this year's program will benefit from an entrepreneurial training grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, covering three-quarters of their fees. The deadline was technically Friday, but Frostman says there might still be room for the course if you call their office on Monday.

Climate Change Coalition Of Door County Looks To Reach Out With Faith Community Programs In 2017

By Paul Schmitt

The Climate Change Coalition of Door County is looking to add new and bigger programs for 2017. The plan is to involve a broader outreach of programs later this year.  Member Dick Smythe shares one of the new initiatives being explored.



The Climate Change Coalition of Door County has its first program of the year featuring "Cool Choices" with Executive Director Kathy Kuntz Monday evening at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Door County in Ephraim beginning at 7 pm.  The program will focus on fostering voluntary reductions in greenhouse emissions.

Rep Gallagher Leans On Fellow Wisconsinites, Veterans In Congress During Opening Weeks

By Tim Kowols

Marine veteran and current U.S. Representative Mike Gallagher has leaned on the support and advice of the Wisconsinites and fellow former armed service members on Capitol Hill during his first weeks on the job. After being sworn in earlier this month, Democrats and Republicans alike have reached out to the freshman Congress member from Green Bay to help him adjust to his new role. Rep. Gallagher says while they might not all agree on everything, it is the common experiences that bind them together.



In the opening weeks of the session, Rep. Gallagher hopes to have his voice heard on a number of different issues, including national security and regulatory reforms.

Packer Playoffs Mean Economic Boost For Area Businesses

By Paul Schmitt

Area grocery stores, sports bars, and retail businesses expect a green and gold bump this weekend.  The Green Bay Packers are making another Super Bowl run this January with a divisional playoff game in Arlington, Texas Sunday afternoon.  Jon Calhoun, the manager of Econofoods in Sturgeon Bay, says this weekend will be like an additional holiday in-store.



Calhoun says the two busiest areas in the store are typically the wine & spirits department and the deli on playoff weekends. The Packers hosted a game last week in Green Bay which reportedly impacted the community economy over $13 million dollars.

Polka Dancing Tradition Still Going Strong In Kewaunee County

By Paul Schmitt

Polka music may not be as popular as it once was decades ago, but on this Sunday afternoon The Rendezvous of Luxemburg is continuing a Kewaunee County tradition that is requested by a passionate group of dancers and performers.  The Happy Hoppers Polka Dance will feature the music of Orv Konopp and the OK Band.  Rendezvous owner Kelly Froelich says he is glad to host the dance since polka lovers are limited to only a few venues in the area.



Polka music usually draws a crowd of over one hundred dancers in the Rendezvous's  upper-level banquet hall, according to Froelich.   The old hardwood floors along with some dancing salt give patrons a perfect combination to keep the polka dancing going strong in Kewaunee County.  The Polka originated in Bohemia, now the Czech Republic, back in the middle of the 19th century.

Old Glory Honor Flight For Veterans Announces 2017 Schedule

By Paul Schmitt

The Old Glory Honor Flight has announced its scheduled flight dates for 2017.  The first of four flights this year will be on April 12 and will be Mission 39 in Northeastern Wisconsin.  All World War II, Korean or Vietnam War Veterans are eligible to apply for the free flight.  Hans Feld from Door County, an army veteran from the Korean War, shares the one-day experience he had on Mission 38 back in October.



Other mission dates are set for June 7, September 20 and October 18.  Old Glory Honor Flight is a charitable organization dedicated to honoring Wisconsin's war veterans since 2009.  The application is available online at

Work On New Egg Harbor Library And Community Center Beginning In Late February

By Tim Kowols

A project five years in the making, the home to the Egg Harbor library and community center will now be a reality. The village board awarded the over $5 million contract to Boldt Construction of Appleton to begin work on the Kress Pavilion later this spring. Village administrator Ryan Heise says it is a relief that the public-private partnership finally pulled through after appearing on meeting agendas 32 times since he took the position.



Heise says the next step is approving a proposal for removing the former Lighthouse Inn from the site so construction crews can start preparing the site for construction in late February.

Farmers Hope To Add To Legacy Of Farm Technology Days With Landmark Program

By Tim Kowols

Farmers can add their operations to the legacy of this summer's Wisconsin Farm Technolgy Days in Kewaunee County through the Landmark Farm program. Any working farms in Kewaunee County and adjoining townships in neighboring counties can support the three-day event by helping it defray the operating costs.  Landmark Farm chairperson Jeff Montsma says it is a great way for every operation, whether it be dairy, livestock, cash grain, vegetables, or specialty, be a part of the event and show the area's agricultural diversity.



Landmark Farms receive recognition both at their operations and during Farm Technology Days taking place July 11 through 13 at Ebert Enterprises in Algoma. Remaining funds from the event will stay in Kewaunee County as grants for youth education, outreach, and other agricultural opportunities. So far, there are over 30 farms with the status.

Ephraim Streetscape Project Taking Shape

By Tim Kowols

The village of Ephraim has until the middle of July to submit their plans to improve its streetscape in conjunction with the Department of Transportation's road reconstruction project scheduled for the fall of 2018. Village officials hosted a public meeting earlier this month to discuss with residents and business owners the cross-sections of the Highway 42 project from the Wetland Preserve to Anderson Dock. Village administrator Brent Bristol says the cross sections meet the DOT minimums, which is good in order to protect the integrity of Ephraim.



Residents stressed to the village that it would like to see improvements to its storm water sewer system and pedestrian safety when the project is completed in 2019. Bristol says final drawings and price estimates should be available by June.

Antifreeze And Pets A Deadly Combination

By Tim Kowols

Winter necessities like windshield wiper fluid and antifreeze is proving to be very dangerous for pets. One of the active ingredients in the two products, ethylene glycol, is highly poisonous when ingested. The chemical, according to the Humane Society of the United States, has a sweet taste and an inviting aroma making it attractive to pets and even small children. April Delfosse from the Door County Humane Society says with its high usage in the winter months, pet owners need to take proper precautions with the deadly liquids.



Delfosse says if your pets do end up drinking antifreeze you should call your vet as immediate action makes it more likely they will survive. In 2012, some manufacturers of antifreeze added a bittering agent voluntarily to deter pets from drinking it.

Washington Island School District Heads To Referendum

By Tim Kowols

Washington Island School District plans on going to referendum when the spring election comes around again this April. School district officials met with Washington Island residents Wednesday night to discuss the $1,109,000 two-year, non-reoccurring referendum, which is $30,149 less than what it asked for in 2015. Superintendent Mati Palm-Leis says the current funding formula never took into account school districts as small as Washington Island and must try to make up the difference on widening costs with no equalized aid coming from the state.



Southern Door School District could also go to referendum this spring to allow it to exceed revenue limits if the board of education passes a resolution at their January 23 meeting.


Agenda Planning Underway For Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days

By Tim Kowols

Planning for this year's Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days is underway. Last held in 2015, the biennial two-day event features close to 100 residents from Door and Kewaunee counties visiting with state officials and lobbying for action on local issues and concerns. Legislative Days Agenda chairperson Rob Burke says they are currently working on the items they want to address this year in Madison.


Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days will take place April 5 and 6. The UW-Extension offices and the economic development corporations of both counties are currently looking for ideas to add to their legislative agenda and for people to join their delegation.

State Mum To Kewaunee County Elected Officials On Biogas Plant

By Tim Kowols

Kewaunee County officials have still not heard any details on the potential biogas plant slated for construction in the region. The state recently released its Request for Proposal for the estimated $20 million project that would convert liquid manure into a renewable energy source and be a part of the possible solution to groundwater issues plaguing large parts of the county. Kewaunee County Board member Lee Luft says with a tight timetable and the large scope of the project, elected officials should be kept up to date.



Luft says there are now indications that the project could be built anywhere in the Lake Michigan Drainage Basin, which includes Brown, Door, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, and Sheboygan counties. Proposals for the project are due back May 1 with a decision on the contract expected by June 5.

Legislators Look Forward Following State Of The State Address

By Tim Kowols

Cutting UW System tuition and increasing workforce development opportunities were among the highlights of Gov. Scott Walker's seventh State of the State address on Tuesday. Gov. Walker told the audience inside the state capitol that his administration was "working and winning for Wisconsin," touting low unemployment figures and a reduction in some taxes. While many Republicans praised the speech, Democrats panned it. State Senator Dave Hansen of Green Bay says the picture is not as a rosy as the governor depicts it.



The governor is expected to release more details on his 2017-2019 budget in the coming weeks.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGbXlmSG4yb3IwdWslMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvd2Z1bGxzY3JlZW4lM0UlM0MlMkZpZnJhbWUlM0U= [/vc_raw_html]


Rep. Joel Kitchens (R-Sturgeon Bay): "After listening to Governor Walker give his address, I am proud of the state of our state and enthusiastic about its future. Wisconsin continues to maintain a strong financial foothold while our economy and jobs climate continues to improve. In the last 6 years we have decreased taxes by nearly $5 billion, putting taxpayer money back in to taxpayer pockets. Wisconsin's unemployment rate also continues to decline, well below the national average. It is evident that our reforms are working. With that said, there is still much for us to do to make the lives of Wisconsin taxpayers better. Freeing individuals from regulatory burden and making government as efficient and effective as possible remains crucial.


"As the session begins, I look forward to leading the charge on modernizing the K-12 funding formula. This is my top priority heading into this session. For fifteen years I served as a member of school board where I dealt with a variety of issues facing teachers, parents and students. In addition to chairing the Children and Families committee, I will continue to serve as the vice chair of the important Committee on Education. I know that my real life experience and expertise will serve these committees well.


I feel honored and privileged to be given another opportunity to serve the people of the 1st assembly district. I look forward to working with the governor and my colleagues in the Assembly and Senate to continue moving Wisconsin forward." 


Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette): "The state of the state is strong. The common sense reforms we've made during the past legislative session are working. Our economy has a solid foundation, more Wisconsinites are back to work than ever before, and our unemployment rate is well below the national average. "This past session, we have prioritized the taxpayers by holding the line on taxes, safeguarded our state's students by freezing UW tuition, and we have been an ally for our most vulnerable populations by protecting important state programs like SeniorCare. "It's the start of a new session, and I am looking forward to building upon the progress we've made. We will continue to strengthen education by investing in public schools; we will help local businesses by continuing to reduce burdensome red tape that inhibits job creation and growth; we will ensure Wisconsin taxpayers remain our top priority. "As I've said before, it's clear that our reforms are working, but there is more work to be done. I eagerly anticipate working with Governor Walker and my legislative colleagues on initiatives that will continue to move Wisconsin forward."


Sen. Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay): "The Governor made a lot of promises in his speech today not unlike the promise he made in his 2010 campaign to create 250,000 jobs—a promise that remains unfulfilled to this day. The upcoming budget should be watched closely. As we have seen over the years, nearly every promise made by this Governor has a catch—just as the 77 listening sessions he mentioned in his speech were by invitation only. Under his watch billions of tax cuts have gone largely to the rich and corporate elite while average families have seen pennies by comparison. Under this Governor we have seen the rich get rich while the average family has continued to struggle more and more. Governor Walker talks a good game, but like the old adage "the devils is in the details." We will see soon enough if he is serious about helping average families or if his promises, like his jobs promise, are a road to nowhere." 


Sen. Frank Lasee (R- DePere): "Governor Walker put forth an ambitious conservative agenda during his 2017 State of the State address. Throughout the past six years Governor Walker and Republican legislators have worked together cutting unemployment in half, creating thousands of jobs, slashing taxes and runaway government spending. I look forward to continuing the legislature's work with Governor Walker in the fight for increased personal freedoms, smaller government, and free-market principles." 



Dan Williams Retiring Today As Door County Emergency Services Director

By Paul Schmitt

Today (Thursday) marks the final day Dan Williams will lead the Door County Emergency Services department after serving as the director for 18 of the past 30 years.  Williams, who was the original director from 1986 until 2001, returned three years ago and is now planning on retiring permanently and staying in Door County.  Williams previously worked as the chief of Emergency Medical Services for the State of Wisconsin and also as the project director for Med Flight at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics in Madison before returning to Door County in 2013.  Williams shares a proud and unique distinction the county's Emergency Services department has here.



Door County Emergency Medical Services has initiated many programs under Williams over the years that have served as models for other areas in the state.   Williams began his career as an EMT/volunteer firefighter in 1972 and was the founder of the Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin.

Stalking Awareness Month Hoping To Curb The Abuse Suffered By One in Seven Women

By Paul Schmitt

One aspect of domestic abuse that impacts many people is stalking.   Help of Door County Executive Director Steve Vickman shares the staggering national statistics on stalking and the ramifications of it.



January is National Stalking Awareness Month and Vickman says that typically in the United States over 20,000 calls are made per day to domestic violence centers with Door County receiving several a day as well.  Help of Door County provided care or overnight shelter for 462 people utilizing their services in 2016.

Dangerous Ice Fishing Conditions Still Present With Fast Changing Weather

By Paul Schmitt

Extreme changes in recent weather are leading to questionable ice conditions on the bay of Green Bay.  Fishing Guide and voice of the Door County Ice Fishing Report JJ Malvitz gives anglers some advice before heading out on the ice.



Four Illinois men were stranded last Sunday near the town of Gardner when ice opened open while they were fishing.  For the latest ice fishing report from JJ Malvitz, go to

Door County Reads Celebrating 10th Year With Classic Book By Richard Russo

By Paul Schmitt

The Door County Reads is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the community reading a book together by choosing well-known author Richard Russo's "Empire Falls".  Copies of the book are available for check-out at all branches of the Door County Library.  Door County Library Director Becca Berger who is retiring after this week says this year's choice is an award-winner.



Berger says the Door County Library Foundation pays for the programming end of the Door County Reads and that Friends of The Door County Library purchased multiple copies of the "Empire Falls" for the Door County Reads which will run January 23 through February 9.

Applying Salt On Driveways And Sidewalks Key For Public Safety With Icy Conditions In Area

By Paul Schmitt

After a huge thawing Tuesday and temperatures forecasted to stay at or below twenty degrees for the next few days, area roads, parking lots and sidewalks can remain very slippery.  Jeff Tebon, owner of Culligan in Sturgeon Bay says salting and re-salting is important to protect delivery people and others getting in and out of their vehicles.



Tebon says salt can melt the ice within five minutes of application and that Culligan had put over 400 pounds of salt on their driveway as of Wednesday morning.

Cancellations & Closings--All Kewaunee and Door County Schools Closed Today Due To Icy Road Conditions

By Paul Schmitt

With temperatures dropping considerably overnight and the subsequent icing of area roads, all area schools public and private have closed today (Wednesday).  We will have a complete list of other closings, delays, cancellations or postponements in Door and Kewaunee County.

The Sunshine House in Sturgeon Bay is open but buses are NOT running and staff is to report to supervisors.

HOPE, Inc. of Door County Offices are closed

Algoma, Kewaunee and Luxemburg Home Delivery Meals and Meal sites are closed

New App For Emergency Medical Personnel Could Not Only Save Time But Lives

By Paul Schmitt

A new app developed specifically to help emergency medical personnel administer the proper dosage of medicine to children will save time which could lead to saving more lives.  According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's App Brewery along with the Medical College of Wisconsin and Children's Hospital of Wisconsin launched the First Five Minutes App.  Door County Emergency Services Director Dan Williams explains why the new technology is crucial when dealing with a pediatric medical emergency.



The new app on a smartphone or tablet allows emergency personnel to enter a child's age or weight and get an easy-to-read chart to know how much of a medication dose to give the child.  The new app is in a limited trial phase and will be available later this year to the public through Google download and the Apple Store.

Door County Sales Tax Collections In 2016 Up 7 Percent Over 2015

By Tim Kowols

The Door County Visitor Bureau has released what is the first sign of a strong 2016 for tourism in the area. Through the county's 0.5 percent sales tax, collections were up around 7 percent from 2015 totals. Jon Jarosh from the Door County Visitor Bureau says while they cannot get specific sales figures, it reflects very well on the numbers of people that visited the region in 2016 and the money that was spent.



Jarosh says specific economic impact numbers from tourism will be released in May.

Eight Tales To Be Told At Women's Fund Story Slam Event

By Tim Kowols

Storytellers will help the Women's Fund of Door County raise funds for their work in February when it hosts "Tales of Our Lives" this February. The annual story slam event hosted by the Women's Fund of Door County and the Door County Community Foundation features eight different individuals telling stories from their lives and how it shaped them. Door County Community Foundation President and CEO Bret Bicoy says it allows people a glimpse at who these eight individuals are regardless of how long you have known them.



Speakers for the two-day event include Terry Lundahl, Jackie Bricco, Honneli Godres, Jane Sommers, melaniejane, Randy Morrow, Amanda List, and Rachel Follingstad. Musical interludes will be performed by Dorothy Scott and Jess Holland. "Tales of Our Lives" will take place on February 2 and 3 with proceeds benefiting the Women's Fund of Door County. You can find information on this event online here.

Rep. Nygren Pleased With Statewide Growth In Heroin, Opiate Abuse Awareness

By Tim Kowols

Gov. Scott Walker's decision to call for a special legislative session and to accept federal funding to fight heroin and opiate addictions was good news in the eyes of the people who struggle every day and the Marinette Republican trying to reverse that. Since 2013, Assembly member John Nygren has helped pass 17 bipartisan laws addressing addiction, including his 2014 Heroin, Opiate, Prevention, and Education (HOPE) Agenda. A member of the Governor's Task Force on Opioid Abuse, Rep. Nygren never thought the problem was this big, but is happy people are becoming more aware of it.



The work of the Governor's Task Force on Opioid Abuse is already paying dividends with the launching of the state's enhanced prescription drug monitoring program Tuesday. The program will allow pharmacies, health care professionals, and law enforcement to work together to track patients abusing opiates.

Kewaunee Pierhead Lighthouse Restoration Efforts Underway

By Tim Kowols

Efforts to restore the Kewaunee Pierhead Lighthouse should get a major boost as its neighboring harbor gets a facelift. The city's lighthouse committee and its supporting non-profit groups are working to restore and replace windows and other important parts of the historic structure to protect it from further disrepair. Committee chairperson Robin Nelson says they need close to $310,000 in funds to bring the Kewaunee Pierhead Lighthouse to its former beauty and calls the overall harbor restoration project a great way to tie the community together.



The city of Kewaunee received $4.22 million in harbor assistance grants to pay for the project, with over $200,000 in funds going towards the restoration of the lighthouse.

Summary Judgments Denied As City vs. Friends of Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront Case Heads To Trial

By Tim Kowols

The requests for a summary judgment for both the city of Sturgeon Bay and the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront were denied Tuesday, paving the way for a trial set for February. A full gallery watched the nearly 45 minute hearing at the Door County Justice Center as both sides debated the merits of the case moving forward.


Plaintiff attorney for the Friends group Mary Beth Peranteau argued the city had not met the burden of proof that its proposed development was not in violation of the ordinary high water mark, specifically with a piece of land located on Sturgeon Bay's west waterfront known as Parcel 92. Parenteau told Judge Raymond Huber of Waupaca County that the city should go back to the developer and redraw its boundaries with help from the DNR.


Defense attorney for the city Remzy Bitar called Parcel 92 a "red herring" in the case, stating that whatever fill material was used there was used in other parts of the development plan not in dispute. Bitar told Judge Huber the concurrence line drawn by the Department of Natural Resources for a neighboring parcel was reasonable and that DNR officials stated they could not "reinvent the wheel" when drawing the OHWM.


Judge Huber ultimately found there to be enough disputable facts in both summary judgments that a trial would be needed, even questioning if the scheduled two days would be enough. The trial between the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront and the city is currently slated for February 9 and 10.

Winter Weather This Week Brings Challenges And Longer Commutes For Drivers

By Paul Schmitt

With area drivers dealing with snow and possibly freezing rain on the roads this week, snow and ice covered roads can present many challenges.  Kewaunee County Sheriff Matt Joski reminds drivers if they have to drive on the snow covered roads, be cautious and think ahead.



Accumulations are forecasted up to six inches of snow in the next two days.  For tips on driving in the snow, go to this link:

Sturgeon Bay Fire Department Battles House Fire Monday Night On Rhode Island Street

By Paul Schmitt and Tim Kowols

A burning candle may be to blame for a fire igniting a home in Sturgeon Bay Monday evening. The Sturgeon Bay Fire Department was paged just after 7:30 p.m. to the fire at 1129 Rhode Island Street and saw flames and smoke emerging from the house as they arrived. Sturgeon Bay Fire Chief Tim Dietman says the home's owner, Mary Kasten, told firefighter she had lit a candle in the kitchen before going into the living room to watch television.



Kasten was able to get out safely with her pets before the fire damaged parts of the home's kitchen, dining room, bedrooms, and attic. Dietman says there was extensive damage to the home, but the insurance company will determine if it is a total loss.




The Sturgeon Bay Fire Department responded to a house fire at 1129 Rhode Island Street in Sturgeon Bay at about 7:30 pm Monday night. The lone occupant of the home, Mary Kasten, was able to escape the fire unharmed. Fire Fighters were still on the scene as of late Monday night. No further details are available at this time. A full report on the fire will be available Tuesday.

(photo by Chris Ranly)

Figuring Out Financial Aid A Headache For Students, Parents

By Tim Kowols

It can be a stressful time for students and parents trying to understand how much money they will need for school and where they are getting the necessary loans. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, between 83 and 89 percent of students entering post-secondary education received financial aid, whether it was from public or private sources. Once families receive word back from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), Gay Pustaver from Money Management Counselors says it is important to find out what it means to your own contribution for your education.



The federal deadline to file your FAFSA is June 30 with corrections or updates to the form due back by September 9. You can listen to the entire Money Management Monday interview with Gay Pustaver online with this story.



Two Contested Races Scheduled For Local School Board Elections

By Tim Kowols

There will be three contested school board elections across Door and Kewaunee County when voters head to the polls in April.


In Sevastopol, incumbent Jay Zahn will look to keep his seat on the school board, while former member Dick Weidman, John Beck, and Karen Brauer look to get elected for a three-year term. Southern Door School District will have incumbents Pamela Parks and Kim Starr and challengers Christopher Jackson and Kim Nowikowski fighting for the three open seats for three-year terms.


You can see a list of the other school board races online with this story. A list of Gibraltar Area School District school board candidates could not be obtained.


ALGOMA: Dave Wessel, Priscilla Swoboda
KEWAUNEE: John Pagel, Paul Jirtle, Brian Vogeltanz
LUXEMBURG-CASCO: Tim Kinnard, Chris Woracheck, Jodi Falk
STURGEON BAY: Jess Holland, Scot Alger, Tina Jennerjohn, John Hauser
GIBRALTAR: Could Not Be Reached.


Winter Weather Advisory In Effect For Northeast Wisconsin From 6 pm Monday Through Tuesday Afternoon.

By National Weather Service

Light snow will develop across northeastern Wisconsin and become heavy at times Monday night.   Precipitation is expected heavy at times with temperatures rising in the area on Tuesday.  A wintry mix of snow and freezing rain is possible Tuesday with precipitation tapering off in the afternoon.  An accumulation of 3-6 inches is expected.


School Funding Formula Set For Debate During Upcoming Session

By Tim Kowols

Revamping the state's school aid formula expects to be a major topic when the Wisconsin Legislature debates it in the upcoming session. Based largely on per-pupil funding, school districts with declining enrollments and high property taxes are finding themselves having to go to a referendum on a regular basis to make up the different to help pay for programming and supplies. Sturgeon Bay School District Superintendent Dan Tjernagel says fixing the formula is just half the problem many administrators are facing.



The current formula used to distribute the millions of dollars in state aid to schools is more than 25 years old. State legislators will get a better idea of what they will be working with after Gov. Scott Walker presents his State of the State Address on Tuesday and releases his budget plan in February.

Algoma Looks To Begin Improvements To Wastewater Treatment Plant

By Tim Kowols

The city of Algoma hopes a short-term fix to its wastewater treatment plant update plan will buy time before bigger, more permanent fixes can be completed. Last May, the city requested approval from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources on an estimated $7 million plan on improvements for its wastewater treatment plant. The project would replace most of the process equipment located at the plant, which according to the DNR was built in 1938 and received its last major upgrade in 1992. City administrator Jeff Wiswell says staff members are spending portions of the winter working on some of those plans.



Wiswell says he expects the bulk of the upgrades being completed at the city's wastewater treatment plant to be finished in the next two to three years.


Ice Still Not Ready In Some Spots After Break Strands Four Anglers Near Gardner

By Tim Kowols

The stranding of four Illinois men while fishing Sunday afternoon was another sign that some patches of ice are not quite ready for anglers yet. According to the Door County Advocate, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Brussels-Union-Gardner and Sturgeon Bay Fire Departments, and the Door County Sheriff's Department had to rescue the four men near Johannes Road in the town of Gardner after they found the ice had opened up while they were fishing. Fishing guide J.J. Malvitz says while ice depths in some parts of the county like Little Sturgeon are at eight to twelve inches, some areas need some more time.



The anglers were able to get back to shore without injuries before 5:45 p.m.

Wisconsin Department of Transportation Announces Frozen Road Law Now In Effect For Entire State

By Brandon Enroth


The Wisconsin Department of Transportation made the expansion of their "Frozen Road" law official on Sunday. The law pertaining to only northern parts of the state has been expanded to include the remaining parts of the state given the recent dip in temperatures.

The frozen road law allows heavier loads for trucks carrying peeled or unpeeled forest products cut crosswise (not including woodchips), and salt and sand for winter maintenance until approximately early March, unless thawing necessitates an earlier cancellation of the provision or continued cold weather allows for an extension of the declaration period.

The Wisconsin Department of Transporation released details on how this determination is made across the state.



WisDOT and county highway personnel monitor temperature forecasts, along with frost tubes—liquid-filled devices under pavement—to help determine when roads are adequately frozen to accommodate heavier loads. Further information on the frozen road law can be found on the WisDOT website and by checking a recorded message on the Frozen Road Hotline at (608) 266-8417.



Climate Change Coalition Of Door County Welcomes Sustainable Energy Speaker For January Program

By Brandon Enroth


In efforts to try and encourage the community to begin talking about energy sustainability, the Climate Change Coalition of Door County is hosting a special speaker on January 17th. They have invited Kathy Kuntz, the Executive Director of the non-profit Cool Choices. She will talk to residents about how they can become more energy sufficient within their homes or place of business. Katie Krouse from the Climate Change Coalition of Door County explains what makes Kathy such a great guest for area residents to listen to.



Under Kuntz's direction, the non-profit has saved more than $4 million dollars annually for companies and public agencies when they collaborate on the topic of energy sustainability. The program that Krouse refers to attempts to engage employees to practice these methods of sustainability which can then be used both at work and in their own homes. Krouse hopes that the public will be interested in attending this program since there has been so much success with sustainability in other parts of the state, and the CCCDC wishes to bring that kind of change to our local area.


The program begins in Ephraim at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Ephraim at 7:00 pm and is free for public attendance.





Crossroads At Big Creek To Host Special Movie Screening Featuring Deleted Scenes From Bailey's Harbor Television Series

By Brandon Enroth

The Crossroads at Big Creek will host a special movie screening this upcoming Friday afternoon. The screening will feature segments from the widely popular Hometown Series from Wisconsin Public Television. Executive Director Coggin Heeringa explained why they thought the film was worth showing to the public.




The film will feature four different segments labeled as  "Birds Park", "Early History", "Giving Back", and "Mail Order Bride". This film is free and open to the public with the screening beginning on Friday at 2:00 pm in Sturgeon Bay.



Sonny's Italian Kitchen Earns Exclusive Cooking Certification To Serve Montanara Pizza

By Brandon Enroth

Sonny's Italian Kitchen recently received a cooking certification that makes their restaurant only one of three other restaurants throughout the nation that can make the famous Montanara Pizza. The other two locations are in New York City. Owner Jason Estes and General Manager Jim Finney met with DoorCountyDailyNews's Nick Freimuth on Wednesday to talk about how Sonny's became certified to make this unique pizza.




Sonny's offers the Montanara pizza as a 12' pie and is recommended to be shared amongst couples.  Finney walked through the list of ingredients with Freimuth that included perhaps one of the most important parts of the recipe: freshly ground tomato sauce which is made from tomatoes of the San Marzano region of Italy. Estes says that these tomatoes are perfect for the Montanara because they are sweeter than American-grown tomatoes due to the fact that they are planted in different soils. The pizza is cooked for only 90 seconds at over 600 degrees Fahrenheit within an oak wood oven that Sonny's uses for all of their pizzas to get their delicious flavor.


To see a behind the scenes look of how the staff at Sonny's makes the Montanara pizza, please follow the link to the YouTube video below:



Door Shakespeare Retains Director & Adds New Show To 2017 Summer Lineup

By Brandon Enroth


Door County's non-profit theater company  has a stellar lineup for the 2017 summer season. The company announced that there will be for the first time in a couple of years, a non-Shakespeare play that will run from July 1st until August 19th this summer. The Heart of Robin Hood is an adaptation from the original tale of Robin Hood which was written by David Farr. Artistic Director Amy Ludwigson is excited about the change and talks about what this performance can bring to Door County.



Ludwigson also mentioned that a familiar director will be returning to the stage in the traditional Shakespeare format of the second show of the season, Twelfth Night.



Ludwigson says she expects both of these plays to be excellent due to the fact that they are extensively searching for new talent in Chicago this weekend with over 100 applicants interested in auditioning for the play. The 2017 Summer Season kicks off for Door Shakespeare on July 1st.


Wood May Not Be Primary Supporting Material Of Foundation For Potential New Eagle Tower

By Brandon Enroth

Now that the deadline has passed for companies to submit bids to the DNR attempting to take on the Eagle Tower Construction Project, one component of those proposals could help the DNR with their decision aside from meeting required federal ADA requirements. The original Eagle Tower was made from wood, before it was torn down earlier this year and Campaign Director Rachel Stollenwerk at this time says that the material that will be used for the new tower has yet to be decided on.



With design playing a big role in the project, Stollenwerk believes that different companies will propose different types of material that could potentially give the tower that same authentic look, but not necessarily be made from entirely wood. She went on to elaborate saying that this decision has yet to be made in part to making sure that the Eagle Tower Committee does their best to prevent a repeat of any kind of structural damage to the new tower in the future.

DNR Fish and Wildlife Report Includes Multiple Considerations Pertaining To Increasing Revenue

By Brandon Enroth

January 1st marked the deadline for a submitted from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources in addressing the insufficiency of revenue from hunting and fishing approval fees. The Wisconsin state legislation put forth this request within the last biennial budget back in 2015 under Act 55. This report has been submitted by the DNR to the Joint Finance Committee with its contents including a variety of options for legislation consideration including raising linking fees, simplifying the fee structure, and even establishing a customer loyalty program. For more than a century, hunters, anglers, and trappers have covered 90% of the cost of wild life management activities and DNR Deputy Division Administrator Eric Lobner says that they will continue to play a large role moving forward.



With residents in Wisconsin hunting at nearly three times the national rate and fish twice as much as the national rate, hunting and fishing has become widely  popular and profitable throughout the state of Wisconsin every season. Lobner wants to ensure the public that there were multiple considerations included in the report besides just an increase in fees. Lobner wasn't sure when the piece of legislation would be produced, but did say that that the process could be lengthy one given the options to consider within the report itself.






Famous NYFD Tugboat Now Resides With Bailey's Harbor Resident

By Brandon Enroth

Many have never heard of the Kevin C. Kane, a 53-foot long tugboat that was originally serviced within the New York Fire Department. The tugboat was used during 9/11 to save survivors, and assist with evacuations after the attack on the twin towers. This boat was also a part of the rescue of airline passengers aboard US Airways Flight 1549 which occurred back in 2009, which inspired the movie Sully, featuring Tom Hanks.

Mike Cole, the Bailey's Harbor resident who recently purchased the boat after the boat was retired, talked about how the boat got the name the Kevin C. Kane.



Cole went on to elaborate how he was able to get the Kevin C. Kane all the way from New York to Door County. Cole, along with two other crewman, traveled to New York City, hopped on the boat upon repairs and traveled up the Hudson River through to the Great Lakes via a route of canals. Then Cole mentioned how long it took them to get across the Great Lakes all the way to Door County. "Overall it took about 23-25 days to get the boat here. I left for New York on the 1st and returned on the 26th I think," Cole said. "My wife wasn't too happy about me being gone that long but this boat was definitely worth the trip."


Cole says that he has no intention on changing the name of the boat, and that the boat has no specific function. Cole said he doesn't like putting labels on things but did allude to the fact that the tug will be used to help his marine construction business that he operates out of Bailey's Harbor.








Prospect Of Higher Milk Prices Has Area Dairy Farmers Optimistic In 2017

By Paul Schmitt

Milk prices that once hit record-high levels back in 2014 have stayed lower this winter, but dairy farmers are optimistic that milk prices will bounce back in 2017.  Rich Olson of Olson ARE Farms in southern Door County says signs indicate that milk prices will make a come back by this summer.



Record high Milk prices that exceeded $24 per 100 lbs. — roughly 10 gallons — at times in 2014 have dropped into the $15 range in the past two years, according to

Rep. Gallagher Hopes To Do His Part In "Draining The Swamp"

By Tim Kowols

Newly elected Congressmember Mike Gallagher hopes to follow in the footsteps of his predecessor Reid Ribble and challenge the status quo on Capitol Hill. Rep. Gallagher was sworn into office earlier this week and has voiced his support for some of President-elect Trump's plans to add term limits, enforce ethics reform, and limit the ability for former legislators to re-enter the system as lobbyists. The Green Bay Republican hopes to be part of a growing movement within Congress to cause change in areas people like Ribble fought for but could not accomplish during their time in office.



On Thursday night, Rep. Gallagher co-sponsored and approved a bill that would allow Congress to limit the ability for the executive branch to adopt major regulation changes of over $100 million.

Lack Of Snow Affecting Door County Outdoor Activities

By Brandon Enroth

The lack of snowfall has had an effect on outdoor activities throughout the area so far in 2017. The Crossroads at Big Creek is just one of the outdoor venues which have canceled many activities due to the lack of snow. Snowmobile trails have been consistently closed throughout the area due to the lack of snow. Executive Director Coggin Herringa says that despite trail maintenance efforts, the trails just are not sufficient enough for them to be open.



According to the Wisconsin Climatology Office, the state of Wisconsin has projected more than 50 inches of snow to accumulate for the winter of 2017. Their records currently show that the amount of snowfall accumulation sits at just over 22 inches from November 2016 until January 1st of 2017. Herringa says that until there is enough snowfall so that the staff can put down tracks, that the cross country ski trails will have to remain closed. Cross-country skiing trails and snowmobile trails will continue to stay closed until a large enough amount of snowfall precipitation can help with the maintaining of the trails.

Ephraim "Streetscape" Project Enters First Phase Discussions

By Brandon Enroth

The Village Board of Ephraim met twice over the course of the last week to enter discussions regarding the first phase of the "Streetscape" project. Village Board Administrator Brent Bristol explains which area of development within phase one was discussed.



Ephraim Village Board President Mike McCutcheon addressed those at the meeting on Tuesday and said the following about the goal of the project. "The goal is to maximize safety, to minimalize visual impact on the Village and those who come thru it, and to provide better management of storm water, and to work to attain no net loss in parking along highway 42 thru Ephraim. That is the challenge we are facing."


Bristol has said previously that there are three phases to this plan, and that the discussions on Tuesday and Thursday of this past week have been focused on this first phase. Many of the discussions included specific measurements on the size of the lanes, sidewalk size, and curb barriers.


More developments on this project will continue moving forward as phases two and three have yet to be discussed.

Miller Art Museum Offering 7 Unique Exhibits For The 43rd Year

By Paul Schmitt

The Miller Art Museum is kicking off its 43rd season this year with new exhibits for the 2017 campaign starting on January 21.  Located in the Door County Library in Sturgeon Bay, The Miller Art Museum has four galleries that feature seven new exhibits each year.  Local and national artist's works are showcased along with a wing devoted to the museum founder, Gerhard C.F. Miller.  Executive Director Elizabeth Meissner- Gigstead says visitors will enjoy the incredible array of exhibits planned for this year.



The Miler Art Museum is open free to the public from 10 am until 8 pm on Mondays and 10 am until 5 pm Tuesday through Saturday.  For the complete schedule of exhibits this year at the Miller Art Museum, go to this story online.

Door County Highway Department Approved For New Snow Removal Equipment By DC Board

By Brandon Enroth

The Door County Highway Department received approval for the purchase of new snow removal meaning the county now has some of the best snow removal equipment to use to keep roads cleared during the winter. The Door County Board of Supervisors needed to approve these purchases due to the fact that they were over $100,000. To total cost of the equipment is worth $443,886 in addition to a new rubber-tired earth-mover valued at $195,991. Door County Highway Department Director John Kolodziej says that this purchase will replace some of their older equipment.



According to Kolodziej, the department has a budget of $1,000,000 every year to allocate to new equipment purchases. With a long winter forecasted to start 2017, Kolodziej suspected that the equipment will be put to good use keeping the roads clear for transit.




The Door County YMCA Looks To Add More Guest Speakers For Social Campaigns in 2017

By Brandon Enroth

The Door YMCA is attempting to create an environment that is not only just for recreational purposes but also for educational purposes as well. According to YMCA Marketing and Membership Director Amy Ludwigson, the YCMA is making more attempts to add guest speakers for non-recreational activities within their facilities. For example, Ludwigson referenced their "Wisdom Wednesday" events held every other Wednesday during the morning included someone coming into the YMCA and discussing various topics with the members. Ludwigson elaborated talking about what past events have already occurred for members of the YMCA just this past year.



Ludwigson went on to say that there will be more events such as "Together Tuesdays" and are currently preparing for their upcoming social campaigns at both facilities in Northern Door and Sturgeon Bay beginning in February of 2017.





Leadership Door County Looks To Help Sheriff's Department Acquire K-9 Unit

By Tim Kowols

Leadership Door County's Class of 2017 is hoping a furry member will be able to join the Sheriff's Department in the near future. The LDC Board approved the class' plans to raise the $20,000 necessary to acquire the K-9 dog, the training for the officer, and outfitting the squad car. LDC President Dawn Vandevoort says the class had a lot of great thoughts on bringing the K-9 unit to Door County including what it could mean for law enforcement and community relations.



The class of 2017 is made up of 12 community members with diverse viewpoints looking to become stronger leaders and have a better handle on the issues facing the area. During this current cycle, the class has already toured government, private, and non-profit facilities and visited with local officials.

Kewaunee County Waits As Agencies Release Request For Biodigester Proposals

By Tim Kowols

A Kewaunee County farmer and environmental activist says a digester system in the area was never part of the ideas discussed in the Department of Natural Resources  workgroups held last year. Wisconsin's DNR, Public Service Commission, and Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection released their 34-page Request for Proposal earlier this week, asking applicants to not exceed the $20 million in total costs to meet Focus on Energy requirements. The proposed system would treat manure from dairy farms to produce a renewable energy source and provide another way to fight against the groundwater issues in the area. Lynn Utesch from Kewaunee Cares says the proposed biodigester system for the county seems more like a PR move instead of a solution to a problem.



Proposals for the planned biodigester system are due by May 1st with applicants knowing if they were chosen for the project by June 5. According to the RFP, the agencies would like the project completed by the end of 2018.

Flu Season Hitting Wisconsin Seniors Hard

By Tim Kowols

The peak of flu season may be still over a month away, but that does not mean the virus is not gaining traction in the state. According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, influenza cases are on the rise this season with seniors being hit the hardest. Dr. James Heise from Door County Medical Center says he has noticed the uptick in flu cases and it is not because this season's vaccine is not working like past years.



Getting the vaccine and practicing good hygiene are good ways to stave off the impact of the flu, according to Dr. Heise. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services says of the 95 influenza-associated hospitalizations, 63 percent of them were aged 65 and older.

Democrats Hope To Get Their Voices Heard During Upcoming Budget Session

By Tim Kowols

Democrats in both houses of the Wisconsin Legislature expect an uphill battle when it meets to discuss the 2017-2019 biennial budget. A couple months after state agencies made their requests, Gov. Scott Walker is expected to lay out his budget plans in the middle of February. Republicans hold strong majorities in both the Assembly and the Senate, but Democratic State Senator Dave Hansen of Green Bay says he will still "fight the good fight."



In an interview with the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel in December, Gov. Walker said he would like to provide more money for K-12 schools and avoid cuts to state universities.

Health Savings Accounts Still Offering Tax Advantages As Congress Debates Future Of Affordable Care Act

By Paul Schmitt

With congress and politicians posturing on the future of the Affordable Care Act, one aspect that is not controversial is the use of Health Savings Accounts (HSA).  HSAs are tax advantage accounts for individuals looking to put money aside for certain future medical expenses.  Mike Walston from Robertson Ryan & Associates in Kewaunee says utilizing an HSA is a great way to counter high deductibles.



HSAs can be used for out-of-pocket medical, dental, and vision. HSAs can't be used to pay health insurance premiums.

Gibraltar & Southern Door Schools Team Up For Big Brothers Big Sisters Family Night Tonight

By Brandon Enroth

Gibraltar Schools and Southern Door Schools are teaming up to promote a great cause on Friday night. Gibraltar has dubbed the name "Big Brothers Big Sisters Family Night" in honor of the program. The event includes a varsity boys basketball game between both Gibraltar and Southern Door and other fun events throughout the evening.


Both schools participate within the nationwide program that as the nation's largest donor- and volunteer-supported mentoring network, Big Brothers Big Sisters makes meaningful, monitored matches between adult volunteers ("Bigs") and children ("Littles"), ages 6 through 18, in communities across the country. Gibraltar Dean of Students Tim Mulrain discussed the reasoning behind the idea of this event that is becoming something more than just a basketball game.





Mulrain says that beginning at 6:00 pm there will be a special event in the middle school gym at Gibraltar Schools that will host several fun games for kids under 12. The games are supervised by volunteers and members of the program. All of the attendees who come to the game tonight wearing purple will receive free admission. A special 50/50 raffle will be held at halftime for which all proceeds will go towards BBBS of Door County.


During warm ups of the basketball game both the Eagles and the Vikings are going to be sporting Big Brothers Big Sisters T-Shirts that represent their support for a program that is so well regarded and embedded in both of these two communities and school systems.







Wind Chill Advisory Issued Until 10 AM Friday For Northeastern Wisconsin

By National Weather Service

The National Weather Service has issued a WIND CHILL ADVISORY for all of Northeastern Wisconsin from midnight until  10 o'clock Friday morning.

Wind chills are expected to be from 20 to 30 below zero.  The coldest wind chills will occur around 7 AM.

Frostbite can develop with exposure to these conditions within a half hour.

Watchdog Groups Show Concern Over Attempts At Ethics Reform

By Tim Kowols

Attempts at ethics reform at both the state and federal level have some groups on high alert. Less than a year after Wisconsin got rid of its Government Accountability Board in favor of the partisan-led Elections and Ethics Commissions, House Republicans led a similar effort to replace parts of its non-partisan Office of Congressional Ethics. The plan was scrapped after outcry from Democrats, government watchdog groups, and President-elect Donald Trump, but the USA Today says the debate on the topic is far from over. Jay Heck from Common Cause Wisconsin says that at all levels of government, ethics should be a non-partisan issue.



Members of the Wisconsin Legislature and the United States Congress were sworn in earlier this week. Governor Scott Walker will give his State of the State speech on January 10 while President-elect Trump will be inaugurated January 20.

Oral Arguments In Sturgeon Bay West Waterfront Lawsuit Begin Tuesday

By Tim Kowols

A Door County court room will be the site for what could be the beginning of the end of the controversy on Sturgeon Bay's west side next week.  The Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront and the city will present their oral arguments regarding the case concerning the ordinary high water mark that would determine the extent of the Public Trust Doctrine for the site and the proposed hotel slated for the area. Dan Collins from the Friends group told in November that he is confident Judge Raymond Huber of Waupaca County will rule in favor of their cause.



Sturgeon Bay city administrator Josh VanLieshout told later that month that both sides have crafted arguments they believe are sound.



The hearing is tentatively scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. The trial is set for February 9 and 10 at 9:30 a.m. if the lawsuit is not settled before then. The Friends group filed the lawsuit last January, charging that the land slated for redevelopment is below the ordinary high water mark and on filled-in lakebed, therefore protected by the state's Public Trust Doctrine.

[soundcloud widget_name="Soundcloud" display_title="no" url="" width="1/1" el_position="first last"] [soundcloud widget_name="Soundcloud" display_title="no" url="" width="1/1" el_position="first last"]

Kewaunee County Farm Technology Days To Put Best Hooves Forward With Horse Area

By Tim Kowols

Kewaunee County will not be horsing around when it comes to developing a strong horse program at this year's Farm Technology Days. Already booked for the three-day event is the award-winning cowboy mounted shooting group Mounted Justice, the country's leading horseman and clinician Chris Cox, and clinician/entertainer Dan James. Committee members Nancy LaCrosse and Laura Siegmund know a thing or two about how other horse shows across the country are run, operating their own farms in Kewaunee County. LaCrosse says they wanted to go big or go home.



Siegmund says more activities will be planned for the horse area at the event in the coming weeks. Kewaunee County Farm Technology Days will take place July 11-13 at Ebert Enterprises in Algoma.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGYUdPTElDUUZscG8lMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvd2Z1bGxzY3JlZW4lM0UlM0MlMkZpZnJhbWUlM0V0JTIwYnV0dG9uJTIwdG8lMjBjaGFuZ2UlMjB0aGlzJTIwaHRtbCUzQyUyRnAlM0U= [/vc_raw_html] [vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGODlkQ2p5ajNLVE0lMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvd2Z1bGxzY3JlZW4lM0UlM0MlMkZpZnJhbWUlM0U= [/vc_raw_html] [vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGZ0p5d3dRN3F4bGclMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvd2Z1bGxzY3JlZW4lM0UlM0MlMkZpZnJhbWUlM0U= [/vc_raw_html]

Klett Celebrates Six Years As Wisconsin Tourism Secretary

By Tim Kowols

It has been quite the rise for Wisconsin tourism over the last six years under the direction of Stephanie Klett. Since Klett took over the post of state tourism secretary, the travel industry has increased 30 percent to $19.3 billion in total expenditures. Tourism-related businesses have paid $1.5 billion in local and state taxes while employing over 190,000 Wisconsinites. Klett says the transition was easy after visiting nearly every chamber of commerce in the state as Miss Wisconsin and the long-running host of Discover Wisconsin.



Jon Jarosh from the Door County Visitors Bureau says Klett's enthusiasm and commitment to her job make his duties a lot easier.



Klett and Jarosh recently guest hosted an episode of Discover Wisconsin showcasing Washington Island and Rock Island. You can watch the episode along with other Door County-related features online at

Frostman Excited To Make A Difference With Door County Economic Development Corporation

By Tim Kowols

New Door County Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Caleb Frostman hopes to hit the ground running in his first full year. Before starting with the DCEDC last November under the guidance of former executive director Bill Chaudoir, the Green Bay native came to Door County after a career in commercial real estate, including his most recent stop at U.S. Bank in Minneapolis. Frostman hopes that knowledge along with his experiences with the Downtown Minneapolis YMCA, Minnesota Shopping Center Association, and Big Brothers Big Sisters helps him in his mission to make Door County a better place to live and work.



Prior to Frostman's arrival, the DCEDC introduced a four-year, comprehensive workforce development plan called Grow Door County, designed to boost housing development, improve employee recruitment and retention, and build on business and education partnerships.

Downtown Sturgeon Bay Businesses Expect Drop In Customers During Bridge Closure

By Tim Kowols

Downtown Sturgeon Bay businesses find themselves on the opposite side of the coin in 2017 after the Michigan Street Bridge closed Tuesday for repairs. It was last March when traffic was funneled through the downtown on its two bridges after the Bayview Bridge and portions of State Highway 42/57 were closed for rehabilitation and construction projects, leading to some early year success for some businesses. Sonny's Italian Kitchen owner Jason Estes hopes consumers take the extra time to find his restaurant and other downtown Sturgeon Bay businesses.



The Michigan Street Bridge is scheduled to be reopened January 20 after crews replace the nine beams damaged in an accident that occurred last April. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation recommends the Maple/Oregon Street and Bayview Bridges as alternate routes.

Snow Cover Important To Protecting Farmer's Crops During Severe Cold Weather

By Paul Schmitt

Snow cover in fields this time of year is crucial to a successful harvest for farmers down the road especially with extreme colder temperatures and winds forecasted in the next week.  Rich Olson from Olson Family Farms in southern Door County explains why a blanket of snow in the fields is important.



Ideally, having snow cover through the middle of March until temperatures warm up and stay above zero degrees will help protect the future harvested crops later this year, according to Olson.

Door County YMCA Kicking Off Winter 1 Sessions This Week

By Paul Schmitt

The Door County YMCA's New Year Winter 1 Session just started this week.  Marketing and Membership Director Amy Ludwigsen says classes are open yet and offer a great opportunity to keep your New Year's resolutions.



Classes include group fitness, land fitness, and water fitness as well as social programming like the "Together Tuesday" and "Wisdom Wednesday".  For the Door County YMCA program guide, click on the link below:

Algoma's Main Street Program Comes To An End After 16 Years

By Paul Schmitt


The Algoma Main Street Program has been dissolved after 16 years.  The Board of Directors of Community Improvement of Algoma (CI of A) voted to discontinue the program as of January 1.   Board President Jan Dart says it was a difficult financial decision to end the program but the community accomplished much over the last 16 years.



The Algoma Main Street Program under the leadership its director Mike Glime saw improvements like Richmond Park and the harbor walk along the Ahnapee River and Lake Michigan.  Over 50 donated benches at city parks and planters in the downtown area were part of the Main Street Program, according to Dart.  The Community Improvement of Algoma will continue to operate on a voluntary basis and hopes to continue established projects with community assistance.

Area City Council Races Are Set For Spring Election Ballot

By Paul Schmitt

Tuesday was the deadline for anyone turning in nomination papers to run for area city council races this spring.  In Algoma, the incumbents Bruce Charles, Jacque Wiese, Mitch Groessl, and Lee Dachelet have all turned in their nomination papers with no challengers on the ballot.

In Sturgeon Bay,  District 1 incumbent Kelly Catarozoli and former alderperson Danny Wiegand have turned in nomination papers. Incumbent David Ward and Martha Beller have returned nomination papers in the race for District 3.  Judy Dobbins and Brian Peterson turned in papers for District 5, while Laurel Hauser and Joe McMahon from District 7 will have their names appear on April's ballot. None of the races in Sturgeon Bay will require a primary.

In Kewaunee, incumbents Arthur Schiller, John G riffith and David Kuehl will run again for their current seats in the 1st, 3rd, and 4th aldermanic districts respectively.  No one turned in papers for Kewaunee's 2nd aldermanic district after incumbent Jeff Dworak returned his Declaration for Non-Candidacy last month.  The spring election will be held on Tuesday, April 4.

Eagle Tower Committee Awaits DNR Review Of Project Contractor

By Brandon Enroth


With the fundraising deadline for the Eagle Tower Fund approaching in March, the committee will enter a 90 day waiting period while the Department of National Resources reviews the submissions of proposals sent in by potential suitors attempting to take on the project of rebuilding the iconic landmark within Peninsula State Park. The deadline for bid submissions is Wednesday January 4th. Following this date, Campaign Director Rachel Stollenwerk explained what important element will be included with those proposals for the DNR to review and consider when making their decision.



The Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public. Stollenwerk believes that the list of potential bids will include some good plans that follow the required regulations for the new tower in accordance with ADA compliance. Stollenwerk believes that the committee should learn of the DNR's selection in April.


Algoma Youth Club Still Going Strong

By Tim Kowols

Dug out of a turn-of-the-century factory and warehouse, the Algoma Youth Club continues to have a positive impact on the community it serves. Since the 1950s, the Algoma Youth Club has been one of the oldest organizations of its kind in the country, providing children a safe place to hang out on the weekends and the young at heart to shoot pool or play cards during the week.  Algoma Parks and Recreation Director Sara Robertson says the Algoma Youth Club has stood the test of time.



Parents can pay a small fee for an annual membership or purchase a pass for the evening to help pay for the services and the equipment used at the Lake Street facility. You can visit this story online for information on upcoming events at the Algoma Youth Club.

[vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html] [vc_raw_html width="1/1" el_position="first last"] 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 [/vc_raw_html]

Sturgeon Bay Placing Focus On Housing, Infrastructure In 2017

By Tim Kowols

The city of Sturgeon Bay hopes to look towards the future by addressing its housing and infrastructure needs in 2017. With plenty of jobs available locally, city officials are looking at ways to address the housing supply, which is currently 97 percent occupied. City administrator Josh VanLieshout says improving that number will help local businesses recruit employees to the area.



VanLieshout says it is also important to start strategizing what to do with its streets, especially with the uncertainty it faces from the state in terms of funding.



2017 will also feature a decision on the ordinary high water controversy on the city's west side that could have an effect on what Sturgeon Bay looks like in the coming years. The city and the Friends of Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront left their mediation session last week with no agreement, paving the way for oral arguments to be heard at the end of the month.

Common Council Sends Sturgeon Bay City Staff To Research Transportation Funding Solutions

By Tim Kowols

The Sturgeon Bay Common Council concluded Tuesday that city staff should continue working on ways it can address transportation funding locally. Sturgeon Bay Mayor Thad Birmingham told the council and the sparse crowd present at the meeting that they are currently looking at three different options: stay as is, have adjoining property owners assessed for the repairs, or institute a local registration fee. City Engineer Chad Shefchik says paved roads are currently at a 61-year replacement schedule and say it is up to the council to decide how they should tackle the issue.



Alderpersons David Ward, Stewart Fett, Ron Vandertie, and Kelly Catarozoli all vocalized their support during the discussion. You can listen to the full discussion online with this story.




[soundcloud widget_name="Soundcloud" display_title="no" url="" width="1/1" el_position="first last"]

Selvick Tugs Focus Of Upcoming Maritime Speakers Series Presentation

By Tim Kowols

A staple of Sturgeon Bay's west side waterfront will be the focus of the Door County Maritime Museum's next speaker series presentation this Thursday. Steve Selvick from Selvick Marine Towing Company will take time out of his busy schedule to talk about the business his parents created in 1969 and what it has been like since he and his two sisters purchased the company. Event coordinator Jon Gast says the Maritime Speaker Series seems to always get interesting presenters telling great stories.


All speaker series events begin at 7 p.m. inside the Sturgeon Bay museum building and are free to the public. Upcoming events include Richard Purinton discussing his experience traveling to the Falkland Islands and Mike Peters talking about life crewing the tall ship Baltimore.

Kewaunee County To Host NOAA Meeting On Possible Marine Sanctuary

By Tim Kowols

Kewaunee County's inclusion in a proposed marine sanctuary is still up in the air in advance of a meeting slated to be held in March. Over a year ago, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration proposed the Lake Michigan National Marine Sanctuary along Wisconsin's Lake Michigan coastline, which would make it the 12th such site in the country. The city councils of Kewaunee and Algoma along with the county board passed unanimous resolutions supporting its inclusion in the marine sanctuary, which was originally slated to only include an area in between Port Washington and Two Rivers. Kewaunee County Board member Lee Luft says considering the number of shipwrecks lining its coastlines, the area's inclusion in the marine sanctuary would be a positive for tourism.



Local chambers of commerce, historical societies, and retiring U.S. Representative Reid Ribble have also expressed their support for Kewaunee County's inclusion in the proposed marine sanctuary. The public meeting with NOAA officials has been scheduled for Monday, March 13 at Knudson Hall in Algoma beginning at 6:30 p.m.

Small Businesses Want More Opportunities To Succeed During Trump Presidency

By Tim Kowols

Small business owners hope the New Year under a new President will help foster more opportunities for success. President-elect Donald Trump has been meeting with CEO's and owners of some of the country's largest and most successful companies to discuss how to improve the business climate and create more jobs. Door Artisan Cheese Company owner Mike Brennenstuhl has owned businesses for a long time and says the tax burden and regulations like health care reform have only caused stagnation in the process.



Brennenstuhl hopes to begin production of his artisan cheese facility in Egg Harbor later this winter, with the on-site store and restaurant opening in the spring. Door Artisan Cheese Company is currently petitioning the town boards in Sevastopol and Jacksonport for a transfer of their Class B liquor license to Egg Harbor.

Sister Bay Prepares For Beginning Of Single-Stream Recycling

By Tim Kowols

This will be final week Sister Bay residents will have to sort out their recyclables before dragging it out to the curb. Starting January 9, village contractor Going Garbage will be switching cart lids and taking the extra containers with them as Sister Bay begins single-stream recycling. This means everything you used to sort, ranging from newspapers to plastic bottles to cans, can go together in one container. Henk Wolst from Going Garbage says this is good news for residents.



Wolst says residents should bring all of their carts to the curb on their designated collection day so Going Garbage can relabel and relid accordingly.

Keeping An Watchful On Identity Theft Can Protect Your Credit Report

By Tim Kowols

With 19 people becoming victims of identity theft every minute according to the Federal Trade Commission, it is becoming even more important to do what you can to protect your credit and financial histories. Putting a freeze on your credit reports is one way to protect your identity by preventing its access from lenders and potential thieves. Gay Pustaver from Money Management Counselors says it can be a pain, but it could be necessary even as you open new accounts.



If you find inaccuracies with your credit report, Pustaver recommends writing and filing a 100-word inquiry to explain the issues lenders and creditors may see. This is the final part in our series discussing you and your credit report.



Kewaunee Harbor Project Highlights Positive News In The County

By Tim Kowols

Amid ongoing groundwater concerns, budget issues in 2016, and the pending closure of Algoma Hardwoods this year, Kewaunee County administrator Scott Feldt looks to Kewaunee as a positive sign in 2017. Work on the $4.2 million Kewaunee Harbor revitalization project began earlier this year with repairs being made to its crumbling seawall. Feldt says it could have a lasting impact on the city.



In 2017, Feldt says groundwater and economic development will remain the biggest issues for the county. However, Feldt says the biggest story in the area will take place in July when Kewaunee County's population is expected to grow by 200 percent for Farm Technology Days being held at Ebert Enterprises in Algoma.

Ice Anglers Look To Weather For Help With Ice On Bay And Lake

By Tim Kowols

While smaller bodies of water in the area are primed for ice fishing, guides are warning anglers about possible issues on Lake Michigan and the Bay of Green Bay. A cold snap early in December gave anglers a bit of a head start on the season before warmer temperatures caused the ice to fluctuate. Fishing guide JJ Malvitz says anglers need to take proper precautions, especially out on the bay.



According to the Old Farmer's Almanac, anglers need at least three to four inches of ice before venturing out on their own and between 7.5 and 12 inches to take most vehicles out. Cold temperatures are expected to return later in the week with windchills of 15 to 30 degrees below zero expected Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday nights.



Sturgeon Bay Common Council To Discuss Its Roads At Tuesday's Meeting

By Tim Kowols

The statewide "Just Fix It" campaign gave the city of Sturgeon Bay enough reason to take a look at its own transportation infrastructure. During Tuesday's meeting, the Sturgeon Bay Common Council will discuss the lifecycle of its 72 miles of paved streets and roads. According to notes written by city administrator Josh Van Lieshout, the city is trying to double the industry lifespan of an asphalt street, which currently sits at 25-30 years. Back in November, Van Lieshout talked about the city joining more than 525 other municipalities in telling the state Legislature to do more to help with transportation issues.



The Common Council will also vote on the purchase of a new fleet vehicle and a license agreement with the Door County Maritime Museum regarding a balcony encroachment before heading into closed session to discuss the ratification of the police and fire union contracts. Tuesday's meeting begins at noon inside the Council Chambers.

Luxemburg-Casco School District Will Be Presenting At State Education Convention On Community Engagement

By Paul Schmitt

The Luxemburg-Casco School District will be featured at the 2017 Joint State Education Convention in Milwaukee later this month.  Superintendent Glenn Schlender says he and School Board President Tim Kinnard will do a formal presentation on the community engagement.  Schlender shares his thoughts on presenting and who will be attending the conference.



The Joint State Education Convention will be held at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee from January 18-20.   The Luxemburg-Casco School District held numerous informational meetings and engagement conversations with the public last year for building improvements and long-term goals for the school district.

Jacksonport Polar Bear Plunge Draws Over 700 Swimmers Under Sunny Skies And Favorable Temperatures

By Paul Schmitt

Over 700 enthusiastic swimmers participated in the 31st Annual Jacksonport Polar Bear Club plunge on Sunday.  The New Year's Day tradition that dates back to 1986 was under ideal weather conditions as the air temperature was 35 degrees at the noon plunge time.  Original organizer J.R. Jarosh says he ranks Sunday's event as one of the best ever.



Participants and spectators dropped off nonperishable food items and cash donations at the free event that will be donated to Door County's Feed My People.


IMG_0153 IMG_0151 IMG_0147 IMG_0144 IMG_0142 IMG_0140



"Angel Tree" Program A Huge Success Again This Year At Door County YMCA

By Paul Schmitt

The Door County YMCA made Christmas a brighter and merrier one for 118 children in the area.  In December, the YMCA sponsored the second annual Angel Tree.  CEO and President Tom Beerntsen says the program is a perfect complement to the year-ending annual campaign.



Over 100 individuals selected ornaments from angel trees placed in the Northern Door and Sturgeon Bay program centers. Each of the ornaments listed the age, gender, and a gift wish-list for a child in the community.  Each person who donated returned a wrapped and ready gift that was placed under Christmas trees in the homes of local families.

Getting Millennials Back Into Church Pews: Local Pastor Tries Multi-Media Approach In Attempt To Increase Attendance

By Brandon Enroth


Attendance at church has spiked for the millennial age group throughout the nation and churches are trying to figure out how those numbers can increase. According to a joint study by both the Pew Research Center, and the Barna group 35% of millennials (Americans born between 1981-1996) are religiously unaffiliated. Fish Creek Community Church Pastor Chris Leonard says that the church needs a new take a new approach when it comes to appealing to millennials.



Pastor Leonard went on to say that Fish Creek Community Church has begun adding multi-media to their services to appeal to a broad range of ages. "It is amazing to watch everyone in the pews talking to their neighbors then you put a video on the screen, all eyes become glued to the screen. That connects people instantly." Leonard said that he also has used movie scenes, television show clips, and music to appeal to congregation members and believes this is a great way to start sermons, because people can instantly relate to it, which captures their attention. Leonard hopes that this approach can bring an increase in attendance numbers for church members in general, but specifically to millennials.



Tips On Starting The New Year Off Eating Healthier

By Imelda DelChambre-- U.W. Extension Office Nutrition Educator

Here is a way to starting the new year taking healthy steps to making healthy plates.  Making half your plate fruit and vegetables, make at least half your grains whole grains, switch to fat-free or low-fat milk, and  eat a variety of protein foods.  Decrease your sodium-high foods like soups and breads and boxed or canned foods, choose foods low in sodium.  Drink water instead of sugary drinks, eat fewer foods with added sugars and solid fats.  Be active your way with activities you enjoy like swimming, dancing, playing ball, hide-and-seek, walking town, parks or trails. Have fun being active and your children will want to be active as well.  Create meal times with meals at the same time every day.  Avoid grazing or snacking on foods all day.  Think before you eat.  Don't eat foods that make you more upset or depressed.  A good piece of advice is to always think BEFORE you eat.

Sister Bay Booming After Road Reconstruction Conclusion

By Tim Kowols

Road construction crews have been replaced by those building restaurants, homes, and other amenities in Sister Bay. Months after the final Department of Transportation crews left the village after completing the $5.8 million road reconstruction, workers from several trades have been instrumental in the over $20 million in development currently underway. Village administrator Zeke Jackson says it has been amazing to watch unfold, comparing Sister Bay's dining scene to the diamond district in New York.



Jackson says the infrastructure improvements the village board and residents approved have been a driving force in the growth in Sister Bay.

Kewaunee School District Halfway To Playground Goal

By Tim Kowols

Kewaunee School District is about halfway to getting enough funds to make their all-inclusive playground a reality. Thanks in part to private donations from individuals, businesses, and organizations, the playground will be designed so children with wheelchairs and walkers can play with everyone else regardless of ability level. Kewaunee School District Superintendent Karen Treml says this project along with the completion of some of the ongoing construction gets her excited for the New Year.



Treml also highlighted its cooperative efforts with Algoma and Luxemburg-School Districts and its ongoing training to recognize and help children with traumatic backgrounds as other highlights in 2016.

Door County Sheriff Not For Vehicle Seizure In Drunk Driving Cases But Would Like First-Time Offenders Face Criminal Charges

By Paul Schmitt

Wisconsin lawmakers are considering new drunk driving laws that would include possible seizure of a vehicle by a repeat offender.  Door County Sheriff Steve Delarwelle is not a big proponent of that possible law because of the effect it would have on others who may also use the seized vehicle but would like to see Wisconsin make first-time offenders face criminal charges.



Operating while intoxicated (OWI) is not a felony in Wisconsin until the fourth offense. A first offense is a municipal ordinance violation and does not require the driver to appear in court.  According to the Wisconsin DOT, penalties for operating a motor vehicle while being intoxicated, range from a forfeiture and license revocation for a first offense, to up to six years imprisonment, three-year license revocation and possible seizure of vehicles for subsequent offenses by the discretion of the judge.

Search Our Site


Do you support the taxpayer expense of Cap Wulf’s appeal of the compromise resolution of the Sturgeon Bay waterfront OHWM determination recently issued by the DNR?
Add a Comment
(Fields are Optional)

Your email address is never published.

Sports Poll

Will Giannis Antetokounmpo win NBA MVP this season?

Obituaries are provided as a service of the

Schinderle Funeral Home of Algoma


Elaine F. Dufek

Jerome M. Heinz

Rodney Vlies

Wallace Englebert


Sign up for our Daily Electronic Newspaper and/or our Shopping Show newsletter!


Get the latest news with our Daily Electronic Newspaper delivered to your inbox.


Get the latest updates for our Shopping Show delivered to your inbox every Friday.