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News Archives for 2019-06

DCEDC needs more golfers for tourney benefiting business education partnership

A golf tournament benefiting the Door County Economic Development Corporation's business-education partnership needs a few more golfers.  The July 10th event is the premier fundraiser for the program, which offers youth apprenticeships, career fairs and behind the scenes job tours.  Teams and individual players are eligible to take part.  Christina Studebaker,  DCEDC Workforce Development, Business and Education Partnership Manager, says one of this year's attractions is a hole-in-one competition with a top prize package to the September 2020 Ryder Cup Championship at Whistling Straits near Sheboygan.



This year's DCEDC golf tournament theme is “Birdies and Bites”. Players can win prizes from Door County restaurants, brewpubs and food manufacturers.  The tournament will take place July 10th at The Orchards at Egg Harbor on Heritage Lake Road.  Registration opens at 10:30 AM at the course the day of the outing. 

Bats in Door County are dwindling

Cave bats populations in Door County are dwindling due to White Nose Syndrome. While they’ve gotten a bad rap and are often a source of fear for people, bats are a significant part of the Door County ecosystem. They help control the insect population. It is estimated the farmers in Wisconsin save close to $650 million a year in the form of pest control. White Nose Syndrome is caused by a fungal infection identified in the US in 2006 and confirmed in Wisconsin in 2014. It has been wiping out bat populations across the country. While not fully understood, the syndrome seems to cause the bats to burn off their excess stores of fat too quickly during periods when food is not readily available. WNS can wipe out 95% to 100% of a colony and can spread quickly. Joe Henry, Upper Lake Michigan Ecologist with the Wisconsin DNR, says cave bats in Door County used to be plentiful.



The DNR’s Wisconsin Bat Conservation Society is working to help these populations and can be supported by donation. 

Options remain for Kewaunee-area anglers

Even after the last vessel is launched from the public ramp in Kewaunee before it closes July 1st , anglers will not be left in a boat without a motor. The city was forced to announce on Wednesday that it would be closing the public boat ramp due to infrastructure and safety concerns. The city of Algoma has said it will honor Kewaunee seasonal passes through at least the end of July and nearby Salmon Harbor Marina is also offering its boat launch for public use. Accurate Marine owner Tom Kleiman hopes anglers will still come to Kewaunee to fish even if it requires even more patience than a usual day on the water.

Kleiman believes the ramp closure is temporary, saying the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers predicts water levels will be declining towards the end of July. The boat ramp closure comes just weeks before the kickoff of the Kewaunee-Door Salmon Tournament on July 19th.

Hirn continues to make an impact

Sturgeon Bay resident David Hirn is still finding ways to make a difference in the lives of young men and women in the area. After retiring from his role as the mental health program director for the  Door County Health and Human Services Department, Northeast Wisconsin Technical College asked Hirn to use his experience and become an instructor for their general studies courses in areas like sociology and psychology. Hirn has also helped over 35 boys earn their Eagle Scout Award from Scouts USA and recently completed training to become a tutor for Literacy Door County. Whether its teaching or mentoring, Hirn relies on his background to make a difference.

Hirn says he cannot wait to tutor his first student through Literacy Door County and discover how learning English helped change their life.

Sturgeon Bay Utilities cited for perfect safety record

Sturgeon Bay Utilities is among 36 municipal electric providers to be honored for strong safety records.  SBU was among those to receive a Gold Category award recognizing commitments to establishing a strong safety culture.  Operations Manager Cliff White credits SBU's proactive approach to employee safety and also says such a commitment can be a money saver for ratepayers.



This marks the third consecutive year that Sturgeon Bay Utilities has received a Gold Category award for safety from the Municipal Electric Utilities of Wisconsin. 

Carrier group commander's sailing career started in Door County

The new commander of the U.S. Navy's Carrier Strike Group 10 learned seamanship on the waters surrounding Door County.  Rear Admiral Paul Schlise, a Sturgeon Bay native, assumed his new command June 21st.  Schlise operates the group from the helm of the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower.  He says the lessons he learned as a lad through sailing classes at the Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club are just as applicable even though he's sailing larger vessels with thousands of crew members.



Schlise received his naval commission upon graduation from Marquette University.  Over his 30-year career, Schlise has seen some tense moments. One of those happened when he was stationed aboard the ammunition ship USS Flint just as events that would lead to Operation: Desert Storm started to unfold.



Rear Admiral Schlies, however, says he couldn't see himself in any other career than with the U.S. Navy.  He says he'll likely remain on active duty for a few years more.

Door County Libraries celebrating outer space in July

Throughout the month of July, Door County Libraries are celebrating all things space. The 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 and the moon landing is on July 20th. There will be many different free events including Spaceport Sheboygan coming to different branches four times in July. Morgan Mann, Door County Libraries Community Relations Assistant, says Spaceport Sheboygan will be teaching a lot about how astronauts train and live in space.



Spaceport Sheboygan’s first trip to Door County will be on July 8th. They’ll be at Sister Bay/Liberty Grove at 10:30 AM and Sturgeon Bay at 1 PM.

Delayed corn and soybean planting could impact dairy and beef production

A cold, wet spring could affect dairy and beef production as farmers in Door and Kewaunee Counties wait and see what their yields will be for feed crops.  Corn and soybean planting was delayed because of soggy fields.  Annie Deutsch, with the UW-Madison Division of Extension Door County, says while field conditions have recently improved farmers find themselves making adjustments for future livestock feed requirements.



Deutsch says the Peninsular Agriculture Research Station in Sturgeon Bay has planted some test plots with crops to see which might do the best should another cold, wet spring be in store for the future.

St Mary Parish recognized with grant

St Mary Parish in Algoma has been running Family Fun Nights for three years and their hard work is being recognized by the Catholic Foundation. The parish has received a $1,000 Advancing the Mission Evangelization Endowment grant for the Family Fun Nights. They’re very popular among families at St Mary Parish as they allow children to do fun activities, play and share snacks while parents get to do faith-based activities on their own. Father Alvan Amadi says the parish plans to put the money into Family Fun Nights for more activities for parents and children.



St Mary Parish was also awarded a $1,500 grant from the Catholic Foundation for a program where parents get together for meals and watch videos that help in their faith.

Old houses may not be grounded properly

Old houses in Door County can become dangerous if not grounded correctly according to a local fire chief. Steve Schopf, the Egg Harbor fire chief, says all homes that have updated wiring should be grounded correctly. He warns if you have an older home that has not been updated in a long time, there could be issues.


A house not grounded correctly increases the risk for a fire.

Giving it a Whirl at Kewaunee County Food Pantry

Residents of Kewaunee County that qualify have the chance to earn their families a free blender. The Kewaunee County Food Pantry is holding an event called, “Giving it a Whirl” staring July 17. Families who qualify for the food pantry can register for the class. To qualify for the food pantry a person must be a resident of Kewaunee County, their income must meet USDA guidelines, and have proof of address. Once a person registers and if they attend all five classes, they will receive a free blender to help make healthy snacks for the family. President of the Kewaunee Food Pantry, Ken Marquardt, explains the details.



To register for the class you can go to the Kewaunee Food Pantry and sign up or you can email the food pantry. 

Lunch program helps community

Local children who receive free lunch during the school year can now do so in the summer as well. The Sturgeon Bay YMCA partners with the local Boys and Girls Club to help provide lunches to children under the age of 18 during the summer. The initiative is meant to help families get healthy food so that the children can receive proper nutrition during the summer. YMCA Food Coordinator, Nicky Lemieux, says that the program serves over 500 meals throughout the week. It was also explained that not only is proper nutrition important, but a healthy mind and body are also a big factor for the program. 



Lemieux added that the book program has been getting increasingly more popular with the children. The program has multiple locations throughout Door County such as, Algoma Schools, Sevastopol Schools, the Boys and Girls Club, and Northern Door YMCA. The program is run from Monday through Friday every week. Any family in the community with a child younger than 18 is welcome. More information can be found on the YMCA website.

Sturgeon Bay council member to propose no fines for marijuana use on private property

An ordinance change that would eliminate some fines for marijuana use is coming before Sturgeon Bay city leaders.  Council member Seth Wiederanders will introduce a proposal to the Community Protection and Services Committee when it meets July 8th.  Wiederanders says his proposal would apply to adults who use marijuana at home or on other private properties.



Wiederanders' proposal would also eliminate fines for adults who have less than an ounce of marijuana if they have contact with police for other offenses.  The current fines for a full ounce or more would remain in effect.  Sturgeon Bay voters approved advisory referendums on the legalization of marijuana for medical and recreational use last April.

Kewaunee County busy with bridge reconstructions this summer

The bridge in Algoma is not the only span over the Ahnapee River that will be replaced this summer.  Besides the 2nd Street Bridge reconstruction that begins on Monday in Algoma, the Kewaunee County Highway Department will be involved in a bridge replacement on County E near Kewaunee.  Highway Commissioner Todd Every says that project should be ready for paving in September.



Every says the Kewaunee County Highway Department is also coordinating a project with the City of Kewaunee.   The collaboration is for work between Miller Street and 1st Street and putting in new sewer, water and storm sewer systems prior paving the street. 

PRAT not dead for Sturgeon Bay

A Premier Resort Area Tax for Sturgeon Bay and three other communities did not make the final cut in the budget approved by the legislature last week, but First District Representative Joel Kitchens says he is not done yet. Rep. Kitchens and 34th District Assemblymember Rob Swearingen plan on introducing legislation that would allow a PRAT to be instituted in Sturgeon Bay and Minocqua. Neither community currently qualify for the PRAT since tourism-related retailers do not make up at least 40 percent of its equalized assessed property value. City residents overwhelmingly passed a referendum in support of the PRAT last year, something Rep. Kitchens did not forget.

If instituted, the funds from the PRAT would go towards infrastructure improvements. City Administrator Josh Van Lieshout will give an additional update about the PRAT during Tuesday’s Sturgeon Bay Common Council meeting. 

St. Mary's of Luxemburg garners The Best of Kewaunee County for daycare

St. Mary’s of Luxemburg not only has a kindergarten to sixth grade school but a daycare center that has been recognized as one of the best in the area.  A recent poll on showed that St. Mary’s of Luxemburg received the most votes for “Best Day Care in Kewaunee County”.  Principal Marc Vandenhouten credits the 3-K and 4-K program staff of two certified full-time teachers and a full-time associate in capturing the award.


Vandenhouten says the program could be expanded with additional staff to accommodate more children next fall if the demand warrants it.  St. Mary’s of Luxemburg daycare will be offering an earlier drop off at 6 am starting next school year, according to Vandenhouten. 


Golf growing locally as time on course lessens

The popularity of golf has taken an apparent upswing this year and local golf courses are reaping the benefits.  According to the National Golf Foundation (NGF), participation on the links increased for the first time in 14 years.  Jack Jackson, managing partner at the Orchards at Egg Harbor says the golf season got off to a slow start but has really picked up lately.  He says the trend is moving towards more nine-hole players.


Jackson says a lot of the Orchard members are retired and play golf in Florida in the winter before returning for the summer season in Door County.  Golf is an $84 million industry that has over 1/3 of the population in the United States watching, playing or reading about it, according to the NGF. 


Peninsula State Park letting children get muddy

Children have a chance to get dirty in the mud at Peninsula State Park on Saturday. It’s International Mud Day and kids get to learn about how soil forms and the truth about worms. Kids will also have a chance to make mud art and just get dirty. Peninsula State Park naturalist Kathleen Harris says there will also be mud-inspired food as well.



The International Mud Day event will last from 11 AM to noon at the Peninsula State Park Nature Center. The event is free but a Wisconsin State Park sticker is required to get into the park.

Kewaunee County Fair goes for new in 102nd year

After touring 52 counties as Wisconsin Fairest of the Fair in 2018, Kewaunee County Fair Secretary Isabella Haen hopes visitors to this year’s event enjoy some of the new changes. A scavenger hunt, the presale of four-day passes at local businesses, and a grilling contest are just some of the changes you will be able to find at this edition of the Kewaunee County Fair, which in itself introduced seven new members to its board this year. Haen says she was able to take away a lot from her visits to county fairs during her Fairest reign including the layout of the grounds and entertainment. She hopes visitors take a positive look at the changes.

The Kewaunee County Fair is also being held a week earlier this year as it takes place at the Kewaunee County Fairgrounds July 11th-14th

Fish Creek optimistic for the rest of the season

After getting off to a slow start in May, businesses in Fish Creek have a renewed sense of optimism for the rest of the tourist season. The beginning of the spring was hampered by cool weather and detours for road construction in Ephraim went around the community. Since June hit, businesses like Parkwood Lodge have had better than expected months. Owner Denise Stillman says even though Fish Creek will not be hosting a fireworks celebration this year for Independence Day, she believes there will still be plenty of things going on in the area.

Stillman added the excitement around an improved Fish Creek Beach has given visitors and residents something extra to talk about this season.

Bus routes coming back to Sister Bay

You can leave your vehicle at your hotel or your home on summer weekends in Sister Bay beginning next week. The Sister Bay Advancement Association will offer a daytime route service between the former Shopko building and the marina and an evening run stopping at hotels and other locations. Traveling through the village and find a parking spot can be difficult at times, which is something Sister Bay Advancement Association coordinator Louise Howson hopes can be alleviated with the bus system.

The bus routes will run Thursday through Saturday from July 4th to August 31st. After Labor Day only the evening route will operate Friday and Saturday nights through mid-October. You can find more details about this free service online with this story.



Kinnard Farms gets go-ahead for digesters, gas plant

The smell of manure may soon be a thing of the past after the town of Lincoln approved plans for gas compression plant at Kinnard Farms in Casco earlier this week. The town’s plan commission and the board met several times over the last few weeks with members of the public and the Kinnard family to straighten out the details involved with the facility. The farm is partnering with Kewaunee Renewables to run the manure from its 8,000-plus cow dairy through digesters so methane gas can be captured. Its success could mean big money for the two entities because of the lucrative markets for natural gas already established in California. Owner Lee Kinnard says there are benefits to the project local residents will be able to smell.

The four digesters and gas compression plant will also open the door to new technology down the road that would remove most of the water from the manure to be recycled. Kinnard hopes to be able to break ground on the project after the holiday weekend with hopes it will be operational by the beginning of 2020.

"Slow No Wake" restrictions being enforced In Algoma

Extremely high water levels along the waterfronts in Door and Kewaunee County has local law enforcement warning boaters to make sure to follow the "slow-no-wake" restrictions when traveling through marked waterways.  Algoma Police Chief Randy Remiker explains what boaters should do to obey the ordinance that helps prevent shoreline damage and erosion.



Property owners along the Ahnapee River in Algoma have experienced high water with some flooding due to near record-high levels on Lake Michigan, according to Remiker.     


Kewaunee County man dies in UTV accident

A 76-year-old Kewaunee County man is dead after he and his utility vehicle toppled over a ledge Thursday evening. The Kewaunee County Sheriff’s Department received a call just after 7 p.m. about the man being found trapped under his UTV and not breathing. It was reported that Wayne Paral of Kewaunee was operating the vehicle along a trail in the town of Carlton overlooking Lake Michigan when the vehicle went over the ledge of the bluffs. Kewaunee Rescue, Carlton First Responders, and Kewaunee Fire Department personnel responded to the accident but could not revive the man who died from his injuries. The accident remains under investigation as the name is being withheld until family members are notified.



Women in Preservation making a difference on Plum and Pilot Islands

A program designed specifically to give women a chance to be involved in the restoration project on Plum and Pilot Islands is making great strides this summer.  Mary Beth Vollmer, president of the Friends of Plum and Pilot Islands (FOPPI), explains how the Women in Preservation program works and the projects already accomplished.



The Women in Preservation just finished a working weekend by completing three picnic benches for Plum Island. Vollmer adds that FOPPI volunteers number about 250 and are from all over the United States.   Other work done on Plum and Pilot Islands by the organization includes trail maintenance and the removal of invasive species.    

Stodola's IGA named Best Supermarket of Kewaunee County

Years of placing customers and employees first have paid dividends for Stodola’s IGA, according to owner and store manager Alex Stodola.  Winner of the "2019 Best of Kewaunee County" for the supermarket category in a recent poll on, Stodola’s IGA also finished in second place for bakeries.  Alex Stodola says the credit goes to the people the store serves and employs.



Stodola adds that improvements to the business over the last few years have kept the store vibrant.



Stodola’s IGA is currently testing an online shopping service for their website.  Hopes are to implement the new system for grocery pick-up later this year, according to Stodola.  


Hot, humid weather can be dangerous to your pets

With temperatures expected to be above normal with high humidity levels the next several days, pet owners should take note of the exposure their dog has to the sun and heat.  Dr. Jordan Kobilca of Luxemburg Pet Clinic and the Door County Veterinary Hospital shares some of the signs if your pet is suffering from heat stroke.



Dr. Kobilca says you should take your pet to a veterinarian if they experience any symptoms of heat stroke.  You can find a list of tips on summer pet care with this story below.  





Take these simple precautions provided by ASPCA experts:


Visit the vet for a spring or early-summer checkup. Make sure your pets get tested for heartworm if they aren’t on year-round preventative medication.
Pets can get dehydrated quickly, so give them plenty of fresh, clean water when it’s hot or humid outdoors. Make sure your pets have a shady place to get out of the sun, be careful not to over-exercise them, and keep them indoors when it’s extremely hot.
Know the symptoms of overheating in pets, which include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse. Symptoms can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees.
Animals with flat faces, like Pugs and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively. These pets, along with the elderly, the overweight, and those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.
Never leave your animals alone in a parked vehicle. Not only can it lead to fatal heat stroke, it is illegal in several states!
Do not leave pets unsupervised around a pool—not all dogs are good swimmers. Introduce your pets to water gradually and make sure they wear flotation devices when on boats. Rinse your dog off after swimming to remove chlorine or salt from his fur, and try to keep your dog from drinking pool water, which contains chlorine and other chemicals.
Open unscreened windows pose a real danger to pets, who often fall out of them. Keep all unscreened windows or doors in your home closed, and make sure adjustable screens are tightly secured.
Feel free to trim longer hair on your dog, but never shave your dog: The layers of dogs’ coats protect them from overheating and sunburn. Brushing cats more often than usual can prevent problems caused by excessive heat. And be sure that any sunscreen or insect repellent product you use on your pets is labeled specifically for use on animals.
When the temperature is very high, don’t let your dog linger on hot asphalt. Being so close to the ground, your pooch’s body can heat up quickly, and sensitive paw pads can burn. Keep walks during these times to a minimum.
Commonly used rodenticides and lawn and garden insecticides can be harmful to cats and dogs if ingested, so keep them out of reach. Keep citronella candles, tiki torch products and insect coils of out pets’ reach as well. Call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 if you suspect your animal has ingested a poisonous substance.
Remember that food and drink commonly found at barbeques can be poisonous to pets. Keep alcoholic beverages away from pets, as they can cause intoxication, depression and comas. Similarly, remember that the snacks enjoyed by your human friends should not be a treat for your pet; any change of diet, even for one meal, may give your dog or cat severe digestive ailments. Avoid raisins, grapes, onions, chocolate and products with the sweetener xylitol. Please visit our People Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pets page for more information.
Please leave pets at home when you head out to Fourth of July celebrations, and never use fireworks around pets. Exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns or trauma, and even unused fireworks can contain hazardous materials. Many pets are also fearful of loud noises and can become lost, scared or disoriented, so it’s best to keep your little guys safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered and escape-proof area of your home.

Strawberries on their way

You can thank Mother Nature for causing strawberry growers like Sturgeon Bay’s Toni Sorenson to get a little antsy when it comes to harvesting her crop. At her Soren’s Valhalla Orchards, a late frost killed off the first blossoms that Sorenson says would have been ripe for the picking by now. After that, the cool, wet spring slowed the growing and ripening process down for her other plants. With temperatures hovering around the low 70s and high 80s over the next few days, Sorenson says picking time is coming up.

After a few days of harvesting themselves, Sorenson hopes families can come to pick their own strawberries as soon as this weekend or around the Fourth of July holiday.

State budget heads to governor's desk

State lawmakers with local ties have differing views on the state budget making its way to Governor Tony Evers’ desk. The Assembly passed their version of the $82 billion budget late Tuesday before the Senate gave its narrow approval on Wednesday. Republican state Senator Andre Jacque told last week that the priorities were similar between the Legislature and the governor, but funding just was not the same.

Democratic state Senator Dave Hansen says the passage of the budget was a missed opportunity to address some key issues including special education, Medicaid expansion, and the environment.

Governor Evers will now have his say on whether or not to sign the budget into law or use his veto powers. We have comments from all the local legislators posted online with this story.





Statement from Senator Hansen: Passage of Republican Budget “Despite the absence of Scott Walker, the Republicans and their priorities haven’t changed: Protect corporations and their rich friends at the expense of the people and continue to put their faith that their gerrymander will save them. “Governor Evers put forward a budget that truly put a priority on helping level the playing field between corporate interests and average people. The Republicans’ response was to throw it out and adopt more of the same from their failed policies of the last eight years. “It is an unfortunate missed opportunity to address the deep cuts Republicans originally made to our public schools and universities, their neglect of our roads and highways, their choice to put profit over protecting our environment and their continued and illogical refusal to follow the lead of the over 70% of Wisconsinites, many of them Republicans, who believe we should take back our federal tax dollars through the Medicaid expansion. “At some point, the Republicans in Madison need to get over the fact that Scott Walker lost and Governor Evers won and find a way to work with him for the best interests of all the people in our state.”


Co-Chairs Guide Wisconsin Budget to Governor Evers Madison--The Co-Chairs of the Joint Committee on Finance, State Representative John Nygren (R-Marinette) and Senator Alberta Darling (RRiver Hills), released the following statement following the passage of the budget out of both houses of the Legislature: "When Governor Evers introduced his budget, one thing was very clear: our state couldn't afford it. It spent too much, it taxed too much, and it borrowed too much. He spent our record surplus and billions more. The Governor wanted to increase spending by $1,000 for every resident in the state, he raised taxes by more than one billion dollars, and eliminated reforms that led to our strong economy. His plan wasn't just unsustainable, it was irresponsible. Over the last few months, we have listened to folks from all over the state, we did our homework, and made sure we crafted a budget that benefits everyone in Wisconsin, not just a couple of counties. We made the Wisconsin budget better. Where the Governor's budget was lacking, we stepped up and made it better. From historic investments in K-12 education, targeted investments in healthcare, fixing our roads, and continuing to protect taxpayers, the Wisconsin budget is responsible and sustainable. It protects our shared values and moves our state forward. Wisconsinites deserve to take pride in their budget, and we believe this budget gives them just that. We made targeted investments in people, not programs. We strongly encourage Governor Evers to find the common ground in this budget. Vetoing the bill in its entirety would have dire consequences for the millions of people throughout our state."



Rep. Kitchens puts support behind state budget

MADISON, Wis. – Rep. Joel Kitchens, R-Sturgeon Bay, is proud to put his support behind the 2019-21 state budget that was passed yesterday by the Wisconsin State Assembly.

“The budget approved by the Assembly and Gov. Tony Evers’ proposed budget have a lot in common in terms of the priorities for helping all our residents across the state,” Kitchens said. “I strongly believe that we all want to fix our roads, we all want to improve education and we all want to take care of our elderly and disabled.

“The main difference, however, is our budget accomplishes all those things in a more responsible and sustainable manner,” Kitchens added. “We don’t rely nearly as much on borrowing and increasing taxes like the governor does, which helps set us up for a better chance of success in the future.”

According to the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau, the spending plan being proposed by Gov. Evers would lead to a structural deficit of $1.96 billion heading into the next session. The governor’s budget also would raise taxes, fees and revenue enhancements by $1.3 billion, the largest increase since 2009.

The $83.5 billion, two-year budget passed by the Assembly cuts income taxes by $500 million and provides $60 million in property tax relief aid, all while still making sound investments in education, transportation and healthcare.

The budget increases funding by $604 per public school student over the biennium, which is the same amount being requested by Gov. Evers. The spending plan also commits more funding than the governor for local road aids, nursing homes, personal care workers, and Family Care direct caregivers.

“No legislator is ever happy with every single item in a budget, but overall, this is a well-thought-out and fiscally responsible budget that should benefit all Wisconsinites,” Kitchens said. “Because of that, I am honored to support it.”  

Child assault case brings up internet safety importance

A case involving a Sturgeon Bay man is highlighting the importance for parents to make sure they know their kids are safe while they browse the internet. On Tuesday, 28-year old Duryea Johnson was arrested for trying to meet a 15-year-old boy at Sunset Park in Sturgeon Bay through a dating app. During Wednesday’s hearing, Johnson admitted to other Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) and sexually assaulting several young boys.  Door County District Attorney Colleen Nordin says this is the latest example of the importance of making sure you are aware of what your kids are up to online.

According to the ICAC Task Force program, it is recommended that parents set controls on their devices, establish rules about revealing personal information, and monitor their kids’ Internet activities. Johnson is due back in court on July 22nd where Nordin says he is likely to face additional charges.

Supreme Court deals blow to redistricting hopes

Redistricting proponents were dealt a blow Thursday when the United States Supreme Court ruled  5-4 that district maps drawn in Republican-held North Carolina and Democratic-controlled Maryland were constitutional. According to the USA Today, Chief Justice John Roberts said in his majority opinion that federal courts should not intervene to block partisan gerrymandering. Common Cause Wisconsin Executive Director Jay Heck says partisan gerrymandering goes against what many Wisconsinites voted for in recent years.

Heck encourages voters to contact their legislators at the state level to adopt a fair maps process where a non-partisan review board draws the district lines similar to what is being done currently in places like Iowa.

Real estate market picking up in Door County

Realtors in Door County may have to put in a few extra hours now that summer is here. The real estate market picks up drastically during the tourist season in Door County. Matt Stone from Shorewest Realtors says people come to Door County and can’t help but fall in love with it.



Stone added around Memorial Day is the point the real estate market really picks up in Door County.

Kewaunee County Chair opines on Trump primary challenger

A Kewaunee County Republican leader thinks no member of the GOP has a chance to gain the presidential nomination in 2020. Ron Heuer, Chairman of the Republican Party of Kewaunee County, says it would be silly to run against Trump for the nomination. Right now there is only one other candidate and that is Bill Weld. He is the former Governor of Massachusetts. Heuer used to live in Boston and likes Weld but says he has no shot against Trump. 



The Iowa caucus is scheduled for February 3rd, 2020 and the Wisconsin primary for April 7th, 2020.

July 4th can be rough holiday for veterans

Veterans Services of Door County is trying to make people aware of how fireworks can trigger PTSD in some veterans. Scott McFarlane, the head of Door County Veterans Service, says July 4th can be very difficult for vets. Men and women in combat are trained to react a certain way in order to survive and hearing an unexpected firework can trigger that reaction McFarlane explained. Veterans know that if this is an issue, they can stay away from public fireworks shows. It’s the people firing them off in the backyard or just in the neighborhood that can really trigger a veteran.



McFarlane added if vets are worried they might have PTSD flashbacks, they should contact their vet center counselor. Veterans can also contact the Green Bay Veterans Affairs Office.

Human trafficking impact part of local presentation

Human trafficking is the subject of a presentation put on by the Kewaunee Rotary Club to highlight the issue in Wisconsin. The presentation will be on Thursday at 12:30 PM at The Grove in Kewaunee. Dawn Heath will be the presenter. She is the founder and president of Join the Movement Events, an organization that aims to stop human trafficking. A big topic Heath will be talking about is how human traffickers use social media to find their next victims. Heath says human trafficking is a major issue in Wisconsin.



The presentation is free and open to the public.

Local stores passed the test

Stores that sell tobacco in Kewaunee County were tested on Saturday. Six stores throughout the county were tested to see if they would check an I.D of a minor before the purchase of tobacco could be made. Kewaunee County Sheriff, Matt Joski, was pleased to hear that all six stores checked the I.D and refused to sell tobacco products to the minor. Joski explained that the program is ran by the Wisconsin Win Initiative and that results are then shown to local law enforcement. Joski made it clear that although the sale of tobacco products to youth has gone down, law enforcement still has to be on their toes. It was also mentioned that the goal of the initiative is to help direct minors towards a non-tobacco addicted lifestyle. 



If a minor is to be caught purchasing or in possession of tobacco products Joksi says that a citation could be given. He said that in the state of Wisconsin it is a violation for a minor to use or possess tobacco. The whole initiative was pleased with the results from this years test and they believe they were better than years past.

Heritage Village event looks at the realities of restoring historic buildings

Some Door County men who've bought and restored historic buildings in Door County will share their restoration realities with people who dream of doing the same thing.  White Lace Inn owner Dennis Statz and architect Henry Isaksen will host a “Restoration Roundtable” at the Heritage Village at Big Creek June 29th.   The open discussion is designed to answer questions from those attending.  Isaksen says anyone who buys a historic property and wants to put on an addition matching the time period should learn that honesty is the best policy, especially if their plan is to eventually sell it.



While the goal of restoration is to keep a property as true to its original construction as possible, buyers need to consider utility upgrades as a natural progression for the structure.  Dennis Statz also says when budgeting for the project expect the unexpected.



The “Restoration Roundtable” will be held 1:00 PM Saturday, June 29th at Heritage Village at Big Creek on Michigan Street in Sturgeon Bay.

Summer hearing protection just as important as sun protection

An area audiologist recommends hearing protection when using power tools for yard work, power boating on Lake Michigan, or attending summer concerts outdoors.  Studies show that sounds registering over 80 decibels can put people at risk of hearing loss.  Noise from landscaping equipment, fireworks and concerts can reach levels ranging from 90 to 140 decibels.  Dr. Cassandra Bedore, an audiologist with Prevea Health, says effective hearing protection can be simple and inexpensive.  She also recommends getting tested if you notice you have trouble understanding people nearby or you have pain in your ears.



Dr. Bedore says other ways to reduce risks of hearing loss include stepping away from loud locations after 15-minutes or so just to give your ears a break. 

App revealing Sturgeon Bay's history underfoot has new additions

An app that reveals some historic sidewalk stones around Sturgeon Bay is now offering a couple of more history lessons.  The Door County Historical Museum last year teamed up with website to create a smartphone app which lists 18 of Sturgeon Bay's sidewalk stones.  Street names at corners in the early 1900s were printed in the newly poured concrete sidewalks.  Some homeowners and businesses also paid to have their names put in concrete.  The app shares the history of those property owners and Assistant Curator Ginny Haen says two more stones now have stories to tell.


Haen says some historical sidewalk stones have been demolished while being replaced by new concrete.  She hopes property owners who don't want to keep the stones will let the museum know so they can preserve them.

Fr. Schmitt celebrating final mass as Sturgeon Bay pastor this Sunday

After 11 years as a pastor for two Door County parishes, Father Carl Schmitt will be leaving the Sturgeon Bay area to serve at the Holy Spirit Parish in Kimberly and Darboy starting on July 1.  Ordained as a priest in 2005, Fr. Schmitt was assigned to Corpus Christi Church and Holy Name of Mary Church in Maplewood in 2008 after being an associate pastor in Oshkosh for three years.  He shares what he will miss most about his time in Sturgeon Bay and his parishioners.



A celebration of Fr. Schmitt’s time in Sturgeon Bay will be held after the 10:30 mass this Sunday morning in Corpus Christi Social Hall.  Fr. Ryan Krueger who was at Good Shepherd Parish in Chilton will be the new pastor for Corpus Christi Parish and Holy Name of Mary Church in Maplewood.  


(photo courtesy of Corpus Christi Parish)

Bank of Luxemburg cites "positive impact" in claiming Best of Kewaunee County

Having a positive impact on the lives of its members is how the Bank of Luxemburg is measuring its success in the community.  President Tim Treml says it is also the reason the Bank of Luxemburg was voted the top financial institution in the recent Best of Kewaunee County poll earlier this month on  Treml gives an example of how the bank’s employees positively impact the lives of their customers.  [TREML] Treml says another big factor in accounting for the Bank of Luxemburg being recognized in the “Best of Kewaunee County” is the longevity of their employees and being an independent bank.  The Bank of Luxemburg has six branch locations in Kewaunee County as well as one in Green Bay and Sturgeon Bay.


Door County Board sends pay options back to committee

Two options on how the Door County Board of Supervisors will be paid in the future were discussed during Tuesday’s board meeting at the Door County Government Center.  The board is currently being compensated by per diem of $50 for the first meeting hour and then $25 per hour for every additional hour of meeting time.  The Administrative Committee has proposed another option of a traditional salary being $6,500 a year or the equivalent of $542 a month, according to Administrator Ken Pabich.  He says the discussion Tuesday was productive.



Pabich says either payment method will not impact the county’s budget one way or another.



The final proposal is expected to be voted on at the Door County Board of Supervisors meeting in August.  $$   


Ephraim off to strong start

Even with road construction slowing it down a little bit, the tourist season in Ephraim is off to a strong start. The village’s main corridor was virtually cut off for much of the spring due to extensive work on State Highway 42. Upon the end of its hard closure, visitors were welcomed to Ephraim with new wide sidewalks and hanging streetlights. Ephraim Tourism Coordinator Lane Methner says business and tourists alike have given the street improvements high marks.

Methner also believes some businesses are continuing to see the benefits of the village allowing some alcohol sales at restaurants after ridding itself of its title of the state’s last dry municipality in 2016.

Car-deer collisions keeping highway departments busy

You do not have to travel far in Door and Kewaunee Counties to see deer carcasses on the side of the road. Right now is the second highest period of activity for deer in the state as does look for places to give birth and fawns scramble to look for their mothers. Door County Highway Commissioner John Kolodziej says this has been a busy time like it is every year as crews remove deer during their four-day, 10-hour summer work week.

Kolodziej estimates the Door County Highway Department removes approximately 400 deer from area roadways every year.

Shopko leaves void in communities

Communities like Sister Bay and Kewaunee are now left with big storefronts after Shopko finished the last of its closings on Sunday. Only the optical side of the business will remain when the last racks are removed after Shopko sold off its pharmacy operations months ago. The city of Kewaunee and the Kewaunee County Economic Development Corporation has been working to find a new tenant for the former Shopko Hometown location since even before it closed in early May. Kewaunee County Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Richard Baker says they are still trying to find the right fit.

Much like Sister Bay, Baker is happy Hometown Pharmacy will expand into the region with an opening date slated for some time in August.

Ephraim fire boat makes two rescues in 18 hours

UPDATE: According to photographer Tad Dukehart, the Ephraim Fire boat responded to its second incident Tuesday after a boat capsized near Egg Harbor. Ephraim Fire Chief Justin MacDonald has not yet responded to our call about this incident, but we will update as information becomes available.


The new Ephraim Fire Boat got its first action Monday evening when it rescued two kayakers off its shores. The Ephraim Fire Department responded to the pair 150 yards off shore near North Shore Road at approximately 7:30 p.m. One kayaker flipped its vessel and was in the water while the other was trying to do the rescuing ahead of emergency personnel. Ephraim Fire Chief Justin MacDonald says while the wind pushed them closer to shore, Monday’s rescue was a reminder to always check the forecast before your head out.

MacDonald says once the kayakers warmed up with help from Door County Emergency Services that they were released.

Jacksonport campground request on town board agenda

A Jacksonport resident wants to throw up a stop sign on plans affecting travel patterns near a campground currently slated for development.  The Jacksonport Town Board will weigh in on a proposed ordinance forbidding left-hand turns onto Bagnall Road from the campground being developed by the Lauritzen family. Local residents like Gay Pustaver have been fighting the campground since the town and county board approved the plans over the winter. Pustaver questions the ability to enforce the ordinance.

The Jacksonport Town Board will also discuss the sale of property on County Road T when it meets tonight at 7 p.m.

Bridge rebuild in Algoma starts in July

The City of Algoma is working on the infrastructure approaches to the 2nd Street Bridge in Algoma this week as demolition and rebuild of the bridge will start in July. Public Works Director Matt Murphy says Pfeiffer Brothers Construction from Neenah is the contractor for the bridge work which will close the stretch from Navarino Street to North Water Street for about four months.



Murphy says detours will be posted to take the Fourth Street Bridge and Highway 42 to the Door County line.  He adds that the second phase of the project will begin the third week of August.  Stormwater and wastewater relays are planned with newly installed street lights and sidewalks from Navarino Street south to the Steele Street intersection.  


Ephraim History Speaks series starts in July

A bit of Door County history will seem to come alive on Tuesday evenings in Ephraim during the month of July.  A free lecture series called “History Speaks” will be held on each Tuesday of the month at 7:30 pm in the Ephraim Village Hall.  Emily Irwin, Ephraim Historical Foundation outreach director and curator, shares details of the series that begins next Tuesday, July 2.



The Ephraim Historical Foundation is also holding Schoolroom Lessons on Tuesdays in July.  Visitors can experience class in a one-room classroom at the Pioneer Schoolhouse Museum starting at 11 am.   




Media release: 


2019 Summer Programs at the 

Ephraim Historical Foundation



Summer brings a variety of free Ephraim Historical Foundation programs, including Sunday SingAlongs, History Speaks, Schoolroom Lessons and Child's Play.


Sunday SingAlongs: A local and visitor favorite, Sunday SingAlongs bring families and friends together in the Ephraim Village Hall (9996 Water Street) for an hour of music and song.  SingAlongs are held at 7:30 p.m. each Sunday beginning June 16 and continuing through July 14.


History Speaks: This free lecture series is held the first four Tuesdays in July at 7:30 p.m. in the Ephraim Village Hall (9996 Water Street).  Topics include:

July 2 - The Life of Simon Kahquados with Dave Lea

July 9 - Rock Island Insights with Richard Purinton

July 16 -? The Knudson House with Linda Carey

July 23 - An Evening with Jens Jensen by Roger Kuhns

Schoolroom Lessons: Visitors will experience class in a one-room schoolhouse during the 1920s and 1930s, complete with reading, writing and arithmetic.  This free program is open to all ages and will be held on Tuesdays, July 2-July 23.  Schoolroom Lessons begin promptly at 11 a.m. and last for 30 minutes in the Pioneer Schoolhouse Museum (9988 Moravia Street). Tardiness is not allowed!


Child's Play:  With a craft, a story, and a snack, Child's Play offers a fun and educational program for children ages 4-10. Space is limited for this free program, and registration is recommended online at or by calling (920) 854-9688. Child's Play is held in collaboration with the Door County Library, Ephraim Branch. The program runs from 10 - 11:15 a.m.  This year's dates, topics, and locations include: 

June 27 - Superheroes and Hometown Heroes with special guest, firefighter Mike McCutcheon - at the Anderson Barn Museum (3060 Anderson Lane)

July 11 - Animal Heroes with special guests, Therapy Dog Nellie Bly and Maggie Peterman at the Anderson Barn Museum (3060 Anderson Lane)

July 18 - Lighthouse Hero with special guest Sue Jarosh at the Pioneer Schoolhouse Museum (9988 Moravia Street)

July 25 - Birthday Party at the Anderson Barn Museum (3060 Anderson Lane)

While all Ephraim Historical Foundation programs are free, donations are greatly appreciated.  For more information, please contact Emily Irwin at or (920) 854-9688. 



Record 40 teams participate in "Queen For A Day" golf outing

Over 140 women participated in the 12th Annual Queen for a Day Golf Outing at Idlewild Golf Course on Monday afternoon.  A record 40 teams hit the links to enjoy a nine-hole scramble with a dinner after the round under a huge tent.  Committee member Barth Guilette explains what the day is all about. 



Guilette says the golf outing has raised about $350,000 over the past eleven years.  You can find video and photos from Monday’s event with this story below.








Door County Board looks at flat salary versus per diem

A relatively light agenda for the monthly Door County Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday will focus on how board members will prefer to be paid for their service.  Currently, all representatives are getting a per diem of $50 for the first meeting hour and then $25 per hour for any additional hours including committee meetings.  Salary is being proposed at a flat $6,500 per year or the equivalent of  $542 a month. Door County Administrator Ken Pabich explains the two options that are being discussed. 



Pabich says he expects a decision to be made by the August meeting so anyone taking out papers in November will know how they will be compensated if they are elected.  He adds from an administrative standpoint it would be ultimately easier to do a salary rather than a per diem but neither would be overly burdensome. 


Egg Harbor Library sees rise in use

Credit the new facilities at the Kress Pavilion for an uptick in usage at the Egg Harbor Library. Circulation numbers in 2018 went up almost 48 percent from 2017 with over 23,500 items check out or renewed. The jump in the number of people visiting the library was even more, reaching more than 48,600 visitors in 2018 for a 137 percent increase over 2017. Village administrator Ryan Heise says the numbers prove the Kress Pavilion is being the building it always thought it could be.

Electronic access and connected devices at the Egg Harbor Library also saw triple-digit percentage increases over 2017 numbers in 2018. 

Manure digester plans to reach Lincoln Board

The Town of Lincoln Board could approve the plans for a renewable energy plant Kinnard Farms in Casco as soon as Tuesday night. The town’s plan commission has also already recommended the conditional use permit for its livestock siting ordinance be approved and it is likely it will give the thumbs up for Kinnard Farms to install four manure digesters and a gas compression plant. Similar to a project being done at Pagel’s Ponderosa Dairy in Kewaunee, Kinnard Farms is working with DTE Energy to capture the methane to be used for lucrative alternative fuel markets in California. Plan Commission Chairperson Mick Sagrillo says the town’s residents are primarily concerned about a couple things when it comes to the proposed plant.

The plan commission held three public hearings in past weeks ahead of Tuesday’s meeting at the Lincoln Town Hall at 6 p.m. The Lincoln Town Board will convene immediately following the conclusion of the plan commission meeting.

Granary returns to west side

After a 15 month vacation approximately a half mile away, the Teweles and Brandeis grain elevator has returned to its home on the west side. The journey across the Maple/Oregon Street Bridge began at about 5:30 a.m. before arriving to the former Door County Cooperative property before 9 a.m. Shawn Fairchild of the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society says he is happy to see the granary make the trip back.

Christie Weber from the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society says there are still some steps to be taken before the granary can begin a more permanent residency.

Weber is hopeful the granary will be placed on a new foundation this fall. The pair of moves was partly funded by an anonymous donation to the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society for its restoration and future upkeep.



Krohn captures blue ribbon

When it comes to mozzarella, Agropur master cheesemaker Roger Krohn is the top of his class. His low moisture, part skim mozzarella edged out the fresh mozzarella from Waterloo-based Crave Brothers by just a tenth of a point with a score of 98.4. Krohn, who celebrated his 45th year at the Luxemburg plant earlier this year, explains how cheese entries can win by such razor-thin margins.

Krohn credits good quality milk from area farmers, great starter cultures from the Madison and Milwaukee, and experience for being able to win the mozzarella division. Agropur also had winning entries from its other Wisconsin plants in the mild cheddar, aged cheddar, and feta categories.



Weather has positive effects on golf courses

 The weather has been a hole in one for golf courses in Door County this season. Although not so great for golfers, the weather has helped improve golf course conditions during the rainy spring and early summer seasons. Jon Martell, owner and general manager at Cherry Hills Golf Course, believes that the weather has helped get his golf course in great shape. He thinks that although it has restricted golfers from getting out every day, the rain has helped make the course better to play on when golfers can play. Martell was willing to go as far as saying the course is in the best shape it has been for a long time. 


Location plays a big factor in how the course is able to handle water, according to Martell. Because the course is placed on a high point in the county, it is easier for it to dry off and handle the water. Cherry Hills Golf Course is open daily for play, even if weather thinks otherwise. 

Granary move closes bridge

UPDATE: The granary is now being prepared for its placement on the west side in a temporary spot while discussion on a final resting place is decided.




The encore of a once-in-a-lifetime event is forcing traffic through Sturgeon Bay to the Michigan Street Bridge and the Bayview Bridge Monday morning.


The Teweles and Brandeis grain elevator began its trek across the Maple/Oregon Street Bridge just after 5:30 a.m. with crews from DeVooght House Lifters and members of the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society assisting. 


The Maple/Oregon Street Bridge will be closed for much of the morning as the granary moves across the bridge to a temporary pad on the city's west side. 


We will have updates throughout the day posted on and our social media channels.



Educators and artists support legislation to report student arts participation

A bill approved by the Wisconsin State Assembly would require school districts to report the percentage of students involved in the arts.  Under Assembly Bill 67 that information would be part of a school district's annual accountability report card.  Sturgeon Bay School Superintendent Dan Tjernagel says arts participation is needed to give students a complete education.



Assembly Bill 67 is getting enthusiastic support from Door County's art community.  Mona Christensen, Executive Director of the Birch Creek Music Performance Center, says student involvement in the creative arts brings employees into the workplace with a better mindset for facing challenges.


Assembly Bill 67 was introduced by State Representative Joel Kitchens of Sturgeon Bay.  It's now being sent to the state senate. If passed there it would go on to Governor Tony Evers for approval.

Southern Door gets help updating gym equipment

Updates to gym equipment could be coming to Southern Door thanks to the Jandu Petroleum Pride Pumps. The physical education program was the recipient of May’s Pride Pump donation for Southern Door. Pete Claflin, PE teacher in the middle school and high school, says that donation will help update some of the gym equipment that needs to be replaced. 



The Pride Pump promotion is a joint effort of Jandu Petroleum and The promotion raised over $11,000 for Door and Kewaunee County school districts for the 2018-2019 school year.

Housing study has DCEDC looking to rehab historic farmhouses

The Door County Economic Development Corporation believes some historic farmhouses in southern communities offer new opportunities for homeownership.  The DCEDC housing survey was designed to assess housing needs throughout the county.  While the survey didn't show shortages of attainable housing in southern Door County, DCEDC Executive Director Jim Schuessler says it revealed some homes that could be reutilized and preserve some unique architecture.



Schuessler says no specific plan has been developed to map out the exact locations of abandoned historic farmhouses.  It is, however, being seriously considered.

Young adults can suffer heat-related illnesses

You may believe the elderly and very young are the most at-risk for suffering heat-related illnesses but the Kewaunee County Department of Public Health is warning about the risks for young adults as well. Young adults aged 15-34 are most likely to visit the ER for heat issues according to the Wisconsin Department of Public Health (WDPH). The WDPH says it’s because people in this age range don’t take the necessary precautions when going out in warm weather. Cindy Kinnard is the head of the Kewaunee County Department of Public Health and she says there are many things you can do to prevent heat illness. 



Kinnard added that so many people who work outside in the summer need to be extra-cautious.



The Wisconsin Department of Public Health says there were 8,445 cases of heat-related illnesses between 2006 and 2015 in the state.

Ephraim-Gibraltar Airport Commission considering an official secretary

 The Ephraim-Gibraltar Airport Commission is considering the official designation of a secretary to handle official record keeping and other correspondence.  That work has been done by Town of Gibraltar Deputy Clerk Kelly Murre in addition to her other duties.  Airport commissioner Gary Glojek says federal regulations now require someone to have the title of commission secretary.



Glojek says the airport commission will discuss the proposal for an airport commission secretary at next month's commission meeting. 

Summer School Helps Keep the Mind Fresh

While some students are relaxing, others in Door and Kewaunee Counties are still in classrooms. Some students are taking advantage of summer school classes to help keep their brains in classroom mode. Luxemburg-Casco offers summer school for students anywhere from Kindergarten to High School. The students can take classes to refresh their skills in math and reading or they can take more energetic classes like sports and athletics. Jenny Bandow, Dean of Students for the Luxemburg-Casco School District, says students may get more from summer school than people think.



The classes vary in times throughout the day starting as early as 8:30 and go into the early portion of the afternoon. Bandow also explained summer school helps kids see friends, practice their basic skills, and meet teachers they will see in the future. Luxemburg-Casco changes their class schedule up every summer to help keep classes fresh. 

Clean Social Media Profiles Are Important

A local business owner says that it is important for people searching for jobs to have clean social media profiles. As recent college graduates from the area are searching for full-time employment, it is important for them to do some summer cleaning of their social media. Nathan Drager, owner of Quantum PC, says that social media can be both effective and dangerous when on the hunt for a job. He says that as a small business owner social media if used properly, can help potential job candidates appear more qualified than others. 



Drager goes on to say that social media can hurt a reputation as much as it can help. He says that it is important to go through the different accounts when looking at jobs and clean them of posts that could be damaging. It was also mentioned that if a candidate has not used social media in awhile it is important to check their accounts periodically to make sure no other posts have been posted without their permission. 

Sister Bay supports publicly operated Door County EMS

The Village of Sister Bay wants the Door County Emergency Medical Service to stay in public hands.  The village board supported a resolution similar to the one drafted by the Door County Fire Chiefs Association.  Sister Bay Fire Chief Chris Hecht says that puts the village among a growing number of communities opposed to EMS being operated by a private contractor.



Door County advertised for requests-for-qualifications from potential private contractors about two months ago.  County officials wanted to see whether EMS could be operated more cost-effectively. Those requests are being received until the end of this month.

Door County Open Door Pride Fest

Diversity was being celebrated throughout Door County this weekend. The third annual Door County Pride Fest took place Saturday afternoon at Martin Park in Sturgeon Bay. The event is held every year to show support for the LGBTQ community of the surrounding areas. Cathy Grier, the founding member of Open Door Pride, believes that the event is important for not just the LGBTQ community, but for the entire Door County community.


A few local non-profits were also apart of the event. Grier explained how the organizations in attendance play a big role because they are people who care. Groups such as Mothers who Hug, Green Bay Pride, and PFLAG were a few that had booths set up at the event.


Photo courtesy of: Ty Helbach 


Fat Tire Biking is gaining popularity

Fat Tire biking continues to grow in Door and Kewaunee Counties as more opportunities come. Fat tire bike racing is a style of biking that requires a larger tire to help float on top of softer materials like sand, loose dirt, and snow. Randy Sahs, a fat tire rider and sports enthusiast, believes that riding fat tire helps bring people into the community. In addition, Sahs says that the larger tire allows for cyclists and riders to enjoy their sport throughout the entire year. 



Sahs thinks that the popularity grew this last winter in tandem with more trails being created in Door County along with the new bike paths added to Big Hill Park in Sturgeon Bay.  The new trails at Big Hill Park offer a Difficult and intermediate level courses that are open to the public year round. 

Polka is coming back to Door County

Some classic polka history will be returning to Northern Door County in the upcoming months. Dale Graf, known as Polkaman Dale, will be performing Door County’s pastime alongside the Jolly Gents throughout the upcoming summer months. The reason for the concerts are to help bring back some of the rich histories from Door County in the early 1900s. According to Graf, polka music was the most popular music genre during the early 1900s, and that people bought accordions just so they could play. He states farmers would go into town on the weekends to listen to polka at the nearest bar. Graf says there is something about polka that simply makes people happy.


The concerts will be held at the Kress Pavillion in Egg Harbor. The first concert of the series will be June 26 at 7 p.m. The concerts will be free to the public. 

Local Republican leader says Trump is the right candidate

President Trump announced his candidacy on Tuesday night in Orlando and a local Republican leader says he’s the right person for the job in 2020. Ron Heuer, Chair of the Republican Party of Kewaunee County, says Trump has been able to accomplish so much even with the "phony" Russia investigation against him.



Heuer believes Trump will beat any of the 20 democratic candidates that have announced they’re running. The Republican Party of Kewaunee County is getting prepared in their efforts to help get Trump reelected in 2020.

Tips to prevent drowning

The power of water can be underestimated says an expert at the Door County Medical Center which can lead to drownings. Ellen Knipfer is a nurse practitioner at Door County Medical Center and she has a history of treating people who have almost drowned. She says even strong swimmers can get stuck in a strong current and not be able to make it out. Knipfer added that if you do find yourself struggling to stay in the water to not fight it as that will just wear you out. It’s better to relax and let the current take you out to where it’s not as strong.



Knipfer says it’s important to read warning signs about where it’s dangerous to swim. Other things that can be done are wearing a life preserver especially on a boat, taking swimming lessons and just using common sense. 

Median price of homes is lower in Door County

For the first time ever the median price of a home in Wisconsin is over $200,000 but in Door County, it’s not that high. Matt Stone from Shorewest Realtors says the prices of homes in Door County can drastically vary. Houses in Sister Bay go for about $350,000 while in the average in Sturgeon Bay is around $140,000. Stone says the median level has actually dropped from last year to this.



Stone says that people are taking advantage of the lower prices and houses are not staying on the market as long.



There are more people looking to buy homes in Wisconsin than there are on the market right now according to Stone.

Bayview Bridge maintenance will affect traffic Wednesday

Your drive down Highway 42/57 may be slowed in Sturgeon Bay on Wednesday. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) will be performing routine bridge maintenance on the Bayview Bridge on Wednesday from 8 AM to 3 PM. WisDOT Northeastern Wisconsin Communications Manager Mark Kantola says only one lane will be open during the maintenance work. He added you may want to use the Oregon St. or Michigan St. bridges instead.


There have not been any issues with the Bayview Bridge according to Kantola. This is a regularly-scheduled routine maintenance visit.

Algoma Farmer's Market beginning on Sunday

Fresh fruits and veggies will be easier to come by in Algoma starting on Sunday. For the third straight year, the Algoma Area Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring the Algoma Farmer’s Market. The Market will be held at Legion Park in Algoma every Sunday starting June 23 and going through the end of October from 9 AM to 1:30 PM. Casey Buhr is the manager of the Algoma Farmer’s Market and he says there are a number of advantages of the market.



Most vendors at the Algoma Farmer’s Market are from Door and Kewaunee counties according to Buhr. Fruits and vegetables will be available along with crafts, maple syrup, meats and essential oils.

Algoma Police speed trailers working well

In an effort to control the speed of vehicles on Highway 42 and Lake Street in Algoma, portable speed trailers have been placed for the summer season.  Algoma Police Chief Randy Remiker says the new system is on loan from the Sturgeon Bay Police Department and has been working well.



The speed approaching Algoma from the south changes from 45 miles per hour to 25 miles per hour near the city limits.  Police Chief Remiker says the speed monitoring device has already been paying dividends controlling traffic.  He reminds drivers to slow down and watch out for pedestrians crossing streets at all times this summer.    


(photo courtesy of Algoma Police Department) 


Domestic violence awareness increasing locally

The strides to eliminate domestic violence and abuse in Door County is ongoing, as Help of Door County has seen a huge increase in awareness as their client numbers continue to grow.  Executive Director Steve Vickman says he does not believe that means that there is more domestic violence in the area, but rather that the proactive approach by Help of Door County and other agencies makes it easier for people to get out of abusive relationships.



Vickman adds that laws were not put on the books until the 1870’s about domestic violence.  He says this country finally did get serious with laws in the last fifty years, especially with the passage of the Violence Against Women Act in 1994. 


Realistic fiction books trending with local young readers 

Although humorous picture books and middle-grade fantasy novels are two examples of reading genres that never fall out of favor with children, a local librarian says realistic fiction books are making a comeback.  Even though the Harry Potter series and more recently the Sutherland books about dragons had captured the hearts of teen readers the last couple decades, the trend of realism is making a strong coming back, according to Beth Lokken, youth services librarian from the Sturgeon Bay Library.  She says teen reading is all over the map these days but has come full circle.



The Summer Reads Program began earlier this month at all Door and Kewaunee County libraries.  The Sturgeon Bay Public Library is open from 9 am until 9 pm Monday through Thursday, Friday until 6 pm and Saturday until 5 pm.  

Transporting your kayak, an important consideration--Series III

Over the past two weeks I’ve spent a good deal of time on the waters of Door
County fishing from my boat and Jackson Kraken 13.5 kayak.  Driving to and from
my launch points I’ve seen many kayaks on top of vehicles and a few on kayak
trailers. Last Wednesday at the Europe Lake launch another vehicle was there
with a Malone Kayak Trailer, like the one I have.
When you consider buying a recreational or fishing kayak, give serious
consideration as to how you are going to transport it. Even lighter sit-in
recreational kayaks are awkward and many times take two to get them on roof
racks. Fishing kayaks definitely take two to load on top. I learned this after just
one year in 2009 with a 14’ sit-on-top kayak that was tough getting on and off my
SUV, especially when I was alone. The next year I got my first Malone MicroSport
kayak trailer and couldn’t be happier. The bars are only a few feet off the ground
making loading easy, and at many launches I can back right to the water to load
and unload. The other great thing for those vacations, or just a day of doing more
than just kayaking, is that these handle a couple kayaks as well as bike racks for a
couple bikes. One thing to remember is that you will still need roof racks with
your kayak trailer.
Another great option is one of the newer roof racks with an assist device to help
make loading much easier, and, a one person job. Most of the top roof rack
companies now have racks with this device.
So, when deciding on a kayak, be sure to look at how you plan to transport that
kayak. Check out one of our Door County outfitters, and, as always email me with
questions at




Northern Sky creative campus closer to completion

While songs about cows, boats and the village of Winneconne are being sung at Peninsula State Park, Northern Sky Theater’s future home is getting closer to being finished. The new facility located in Fish Creek will put all of the organization’s operations under one roof, including its fall and winter programming. Artistic Director Jeff Herbst knows some people have been concerned about the future of the outdoor shows at Peninsula State Park because of the facility. He says the summer shows will continue to play at the amphitheater for many years to come and they even brought some of those elements indoors.

The 248-seat theater will be ready for when Northern Sky Theater has the world premiere of “Dad’s Season Tickets” on August 31st. You can hear more about the new creative campus and the 2019 summer season online with this story.



Strong start to summer in Southern Door

Claudia Grosbeier from CJ’s Bar and Grill in Idlewild has been slinging a lot of burgers for people coming through the area in the opening weeks of the tourist season. Specific numbers will not be released by the Door County Tourism Zone for a few more weeks, but Grosbeier says their bottom line has been on par with what they did last year despite the rainy and cool weather possibly keeping some tourists away until later in the season. Grosbeier credits cottage owners coming up to get ready for the season and visitors to local attractions like the Sherwood Point Lighthouse and Potawatomi State Park with some of the early season success.

CJ’s Bar and Grill has also been doing its part to grab more people from outside of the area to Idlewild, including this weekend’s bike show and next month’s Fourth of July parade.

Kewaunee School District prepares for all day 4K

Parents of preschoolers in Kewaunee will have one less thing to worry about this fall when its school district transitions to all day four-year-old kindergarten (4K). Kewaunee School District has been enrolling students into the full day program since the board approved it back in April. Even though a line item in Governor Tony Evers’ budget proposal took out funding for expanding all-day 4K statewide, Treml says providing the program is a service to the entire community.

Other area school districts like Southern Door will also offer all-day 4K for the first time this fall.

Shipyard grants carry local impact

Although a recently approved small shipyard grant is for Fincantieri Marinette Marine, U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin says its impact will be felt throughout the region including Door County. The Democratic Senator from Wisconsin announced the $1.1 million grant from the United States Department of Transportation last week. Grants like these help shipyards repair and modernize their equipment while improving their efficiency and productivity. Senator Baldwin says that is good news for businesses in Sturgeon Bay.

Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay was awarded a similar grant last year for nearly $2 million.

Developers summit draws interest in downtown Sturgeon Bay

Some prime Sturgeon Bay redevelopment sites got second looks thanks to Door County Economic Development Corporations recent developers summit.  The private event attracted a dozen developers from throughout the state.  The idea was to show them Sturgeon Bay's assets for reuse and repurposing.  DCEDC Executive Director Jim Schuessler says the site drawing the most interest was the Westside Waterfront area.



The need for new and affordable housing was a point DCEDC and community leaders made to those attending the summit.  Schuessler says a pair of other redevelopment sites also seemed to generate interest from visiting developers.




Schuessler says plans for another developers summit are being made for later this year, possibly in the fall.

Hutchinson says political climate must change to get results

Retired 1st District State Assemblymember Dave Hutchinson does not like the current state of partisan politics being conducted in the state and nationally.  Having served in the state assembly from 1995 until 2001, Hutchinson says today’s politicians must reach across the aisle and work together to get things done.



Hutchinson, 75,  says his most notable accomplishment in the assembly was getting a $375 million technology bill for computers passed for public schools in the mid-1990s that became a national model.  He adds that he is hopeful state Republicans can work with Governor Tony Evers, who he considers is a good guy.    


Port O' Call captures "Best Dining View of Kewaunee County"

When Randy Vandenack purchased the Port O’ Call Restaurant in Kewaunee in 2001, one visible asset trumped the amount of needed work to revamp the building.  One look at the view of the Kewaunee Harbor is all it took for Vandenack to pull the trigger on opening the business.



Vandenack adds that patrons often call ahead to reserve a special table on the outside deck or inside to capture the best view of the water.  Port O’ Call is open seven days a week during the summer and was recently awarded the 2019 Best Dining View in Kewaunee County from a poll on  


Finance Committee approves Granary final two considerations

The City of Sturgeon Bay Finance/Purchasing & Building Committee approved the final two pieces of the puzzle to allow the granary to move to the west side on Monday.  At a special meeting held Thursday morning,   the staging site plan for the temporary relocation of the Teweles & Brandeis Grain Elevator and the stability of the structure was unanimously voted on by the Finance Committee.  Pat Drury, the original contractor who moved the Granary across the bridge last year, says he has no questions about the structural integrity of the granary, which he calls one of the strongest buildings in Sturgeon Bay.



Christie Weber, President of the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society Foundation, shared the cost of the restoration to date.



Finance Committee Chair Helen Bacon closed the meeting by recommending that the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society Foundation hire an Independent Project Manager to help prevent “eleventh” hour decisions being made on short notice in the future.   


State transportation funding issues offer differing views

Democratic state Senator Dave Hansen and Republican state Senator Andre Jacque have differing views when it comes to how transportation funding should be addressed in the upcoming budget. Under the approved transportation budget, vehicle title fees would be raised by $95 and registration would go up $10. Governor Tony Evers suggested raising the gas tax by eight cents and an increase on fees for heavy trucks to cover his $600 million request to fund transportation projects in the state. Senator Jacque would prefer to see some of the state’s surplus money go towards the transportation issues.

A gas tax would be the fairest way of raising transportation revenue according to Senator Hansen, who supported an effort to index it in 2005 to help it keep pace with inflation.

The transportation funding package also includes money from the general fund to pay for some local road projects and a study on whether fees based on miles driven could be implemented.

Farming practices beginning to change

Farming strategies like no-till planting and cover crops are not new practices in Door and Kewaunee Counties, but agronomist Nathen Nysse says more operators are beginning to take notice. Nysse has worked with farms that are members of conservation efforts like Peninsula Pride Farms and the Door-Kewaunee Demonstration Farm Network for many years as farmers try to get the most out of their land while also keeping their ecological footprint in check. As more information has gotten out there, Nysse says the conversations he has with other farmers have changed.

Nysse says the biggest change he has seen has been the wide spectrum of crops being planted with no-till practices, which now include corn, alfalfa, and soybeans.

Washington Island businesses hoping for warmer weather

Townliner Motel owner and Washington Island Ferry captain Joel Gunnlaugsson hopes their next visitor is better weather. He estimates tourism numbers on Washington Island will be down in May because of the cool temperatures accompanied with rain. Traffic is starting to pick up thanks to school being out of session, something Gunnlaugsson says local businesses are excited to see.

Gunnlaugsson believes the real season kicks off this weekend when the Wisconsin Council of Churches makes Washington Island its home base June 24th through 28th.

L-C students return from trip abroad

Sixteen students and their chaperones are home from their tour of Germany after completing the first international trip in Luxemburg-Casco School District in almost a decade. Social studies teacher Lauren Kleiman organized the weeklong excursion which included visits to a concentration camp, the Berlin Wall, Nymphenburg Palace, and other historical sites. She says was impressed with how well the junior and senior students behaved during the trip and put themselves outside of their comfort zones.

Kleiman hopes to take more students abroad in the coming years and wants to be a resource for other teachers in the area who may want to do similar trips with their schools.



Kewaunee County Board hears recommendations on jail

The big topic of conservation at the Kewaunee County Board meeting on Tuesday night was how to move forward with plans in renovating or replacing the jail. Venture Architects, a Milwaukee firm, made recommendations to the Kewaunee County Board about how they should go about either building a new jail or renovating the current one. The firm recommended a couple of other sites to choose from if they decide to build a new jail. The Kewaunee County Board did not make a decision about which direction they would choose. Kewaunee County Board Chairman Robert Weidner says if a renovation is the answer, they would have to get creative as there is limited space to do so where it is now.



The board also made sure all county departments have a clear oversight committee to which they report. 

Volunteers wanted to help Door County junior triathletes

Volunteers are needed to help with an annual triathlon in Egg Harbor, especially those able to work with 6-to-14 year old athletes.  The Door County Silent Sports Alliance needs about 20 adults who can help guide younger triathletes in the 2019 Door County Medical Center Kids Triathlon.  Dave Ferguson of the DCSSA says potential volunteers must be prepared to have the time of their lives.


The Door County Triathlon and the Door County Medical Center Kids Triathlon will take place July 13th starting at Frank Murphy County Park.  Volunteers can be as young as 18 years-old.  More details on how to volunteer are with this story online.

Local Democratic presidential debates preview

The chairperson of the Democratic Party of Door County is excited about the crop of candidates running for president in 2020. There will be two nights of debates next week with the 20 democratic candidates split evenly between Wednesday and Thursday nights. Will Gregory, Chairperson for the Democratic Party of Door County, says he likes many of the candidates running. Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Jay Inslee and Pete Buttigieg are the ones Gregory mentioned as names he’s excited to hear from next week. There are a number of issues Gregory wants to hear about but income inequality is at the top of the list.



Gregory also made a prediction on what type of candidate will win the nomination.



The debates will air live from 8 PM to 10 PM each night on NBC and MSNBC.

Big Year for Liberty Grove Historical Society

The 20th anniversary of the Liberty Grove Historical Society will hold lots of summer events for the people of northern Door County.  Some of these events include pony rides, wagon rides, tractor and car shows, and an arts and crafts show in late July.  Karen Moran, curator of the Liberty Grove Historical Society, is gearing up for a busy summer filled with education and preserving the history of the area.



Liberty Grove Historical Society is hosting their annual fish boil this Thursday, from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Viking Grill in Ellison Bay, home of the first fish boil in Door County.

Bernhoft becomes Sister Bay Village Administrator June 26th

The Village of Sister Bay will have a full-time village administrator for the first time in a couple of years.  Beau Bernhoft, who previously served in the Planning Department and other administrative roles for Oak Creek, Wisconsin, will start next week.  Bernhoft says he was looking for a new administrative challenge, which he found in Sister Bay.



Bernhoft gives credit to Sister Bay officials who capably took over the administrator's duties until posting for a full-time administrator.  He says that's the type of support that also made the Sister Bay job attractive.



Beau Bernhoft met the public for the first time when the village board met Tuesday evening. His first day on the job will be Wednesday, June 26th.

Kewaunee County helping to fight Lyme disease

Lyme disease has become more prevalent in Eastern Wisconsin in the last few years and Kewaunee County is trying to help combat it. The Kewaunee County Public Health Department (KCPHD) is handing out free “Fight the Bite” kits to show how to protect yourself from tick and mosquito bites. Cindy Kinnard, Director of the KCPHD, says Lyme disease has become much more prevalent in Eastern Wisconsin since about 2003. Before that, it was really only found in the western part of the state. The kits include insect repellant, tweezers and alcohol wipes in them, things you need to remove a tick from your skin. Kinnard says that Lyme disease needs to be taken seriously as it can cause long-term effects.



The kits also contain education information about Lyme disease and West Nile Virus which is transmitted through mosquitos. They can be picked up from the Kewaunee County Public Health Department at 810 Lincoln St in Kewaunee.

Lighthouse tower project gets PUD extension

The Sturgeon Bay Common Council voted to approve a one-year extension of the Planning Unit Development (PUD) for the Door County Maritime Museum’s maritime lighthouse tower project Tuesday.  The request was approved by a 5-2 vote.  Councilmember Kelly Avenson attempted to put an amendment to the make the PUD extension contingent upon a lakebed lease from the state being obtained, but the motion was defeated.  District 3 Alderperson Dan Williams says the land is private property and an amendment would only muddy the waters.



The two-year PUD is near expiration so the DCMM is requesting the extension.  The 10-story tower will have an observation deck on top and is a $5.5 million project that has been in the works for several years with hopes of a groundbreaking later this summer.  


Good weather led to busy Memorial Day weekend camping

The busy camping season got off to a great start at Potawatomi State Park thanks to good weather on Memorial Day weekend. It was up from last year’s Memorial Day weekend according to Potawatomi State Park Superintendent Erin Brown Stender. She says last year there were a lot of no-shows because of poor weather. Brown Stender added there’s kind of a lull after Memorial Day weekend and the park is getting ready for the next wave of campers.



Depending on if you’re a Wisconsin resident and what part of the week you go camping, the prices range from $18-$35 per night to camp at Potawatomi State Park.

Jacksonport celebrating a couple of hometown artists

You have a chance to learn about a couple of Door County artists and their works in Jacksonport next week. Fred Erskine and Charles Butler were both born in Jacksonport in 1890. Erskine is considered to be one of the first, if not the first Door County photographer. Butler is one of Jacksonport’s earliest authors who wrote a lot about his experiences in World War I. The Jacksonport Historical Society is hosting a presentation on the two men on June 27th at 7 PM where many of Erskine’s photographs will be shown. Phyllis Zatlin, a volunteer and frequent presenter at the historical society, says many of Erskine’s pictures were found recently when the new Jacksonport Town Hall was being renovated.



Erskine took many pictures of Butler during World War I and the two were very good friends. Virginia Maher, a Jacksonport art historian, and Marilyn Hein, Eskine’s granddaughter will be the presenters at the event. It will be held at the Jacksonport Town Hall on County Road V. 

Southern Door receives grant for healthy learning

Southern Door’s efforts to keep kids active and healthy are being recognized with a $1,000 grant. This past school year, Southern Door began a before-school physical activity program for students who don’t participate in the breakfast program. It was designed to get kids active instead of just standing around waiting for school to start if students took the bus. In the spring, the school applied for the Wisconsin School Health Award according to Elementary School Principal Cory Vandertie. He along with Pupil Services Director David Desmond and Partners in Health Chairperson Sarah Soukup completed the application. Vandertie says the grant will go right back into the before-school physical activity program.



Vandertie says he has gotten great feedback from students, staff and parents about the new program.

Retirees aid adult literacy efforts and see lives transformed

Marge Weichelt wanted to stay connected to Kewaunee when she retired from teaching.  The Kewaunee County Literacy Partnership provided that opportunity for her and, later on, for her husband, Joel.  Both now serve as adult literacy tutors.  Marge meets weekly with adult workers at East Shore Industries.  Joel stepped up to tutor a young man from Mexico with limited English skills after his previous tutor had to quit for health reasons.  The Weichelt's say seeing students progress has been most rewarding.



Marge Weichelt understands those who'd like to use the Literacy Partnership's programs might be reluctant to admit they need help with reading and writing.  She says taking that first step can open doors to a bright economic future.



To learn how to be a volunteer check out this story online.  You don't need teaching skills or be able to speak a foreign language to help students in English As Second Language classes.  The Kewaunee County Literacy Partnership will provide all the training needed.


(photo courtesy of Literacy Partners of Kewaunee County)

Environmental group fears property damage from Lake Michigan diversions

Midwest Environmental Advocates is concerned that multiple large scale water diversion from the Great Lakes could cause long-term impacts on lands and activities in areas like Door and Kewaunee Counties.  That follows the groups' challenge of a Department of Natural Resources decision allowing the City of Racine to draw seven-million gallons of water a day for the Foxconn manufacturing facility in nearby Mount Pleasant.  The DNR says that's within the guidelines of the Great Lakes water compact. Robert Lee, an attorney for Midwest Environmental Advocates, says the group is concerned that using municipal utilities to provide water for large scale commercial users could lead to multiple diversions, which could lower lake levels and impact recreational use like boating and fishing.



The City of Racine request for water diversion is the third granted by the Wisconsin DNR.  Water diversions were also approved for residential drinking water for New Berlin and Waukesha. 

The Algoma Car Show rescheduled for this Saturday

A month later than originally scheduled, the Algoma Car Show will hope Mother Nature cooperates and 17 different classes of show cars, trucks and motorcycles will be judged this Saturday.  The 19th annual event will be held in downtown Algoma starting with registration at 7:30.  An Armed Forces Day Salute for veterans is planned for 11:30 am.  Jim Rabas, a member of the Community Improvement of Algoma, says the show will bring in people from all over the state to participate.



Early cars from the 1900s will be featured as well as vintage, classic and late model vehicles.  Trophies will be announced at 2:30 pm.  You can find more information on the Algoma Car Show below.


(Photo courtesy of Community Improvement of Algoma) 




Due to the rainy weather in the forecast for May 18, 2019, the date has been changed to June 22, 2019.
This annual car show features 17 classes of quality show cars and motorcycles in Downtown Algoma. Enjoy food, drink, music and a special Armed Forces Day Salute by local service veterans.  Free entry for spectators.
7:30-11:30 a.m: Participant registration at Hotel Stebbins. Participant registration fee is $10.
11:30 a.m: Armed Forces Day Salute
11:30 a.m:  Judging begins
2:30pm: Trophies awarded. Top three in each car/truck category get a trophy. Motorcycle is 1st place only.
A – Early Cars, 1900-1931
B – Vintage Cars, 1932 – 1948
C – Classic Cars, 1949-1960
D – Classic Cars, 1961-1971
E – Classic Cars, 1973-1985
F – Late Model Cars, 1986 & up
G – Muscle Cars, 1961-1972
H – Street Rods, 1934 & older
I –  Street Rods, 1935 & newer
J – Corvettes, All years
K – Convertibles, All years
L – Foreign, All years
M – Vintage, 1966 & older
N – Modern, 1967-1985
O – Late Model, 1986 & newer
1 – Stock, All years
2 – Custom All years
Additional Awards
Special Interest and Best of Show
Come see classic and collector cars, trucks, and motorcycles displayed on Algoma’s Steele Street.  The Algoma Fire Department sells food & refreshments.
The show is sponsored by Community Improvement of Algoma.

City approves Granary move to lot 92

The Granary has the city’s approval to move back to the original site.  After an hour-long discussion in open session, the Sturgeon Bay Common Council voted Tuesday night to amend the development agreement the city has with the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society Foundation to move the Teweles and Brandeis Grain Elevator to lot 92 on the west side.  The amendment was approved by a 5-2 vote. Council members Gary Nault and Kirsten Reeths voted against the amendment voicing concerns about the staging area.  Mayor David Ward clarified what the council was deciding on at the meeting.



City Administrator Josh VanLieshout earlier noted that issues concerning the site plan and the structure being up to building code needs to be resolved before the finance committee can finalize the development agreement.  Earlier in the meeting, the street closure application from the SBHSF and DeVooght Movers for the granary move was approved by a close 4-3 vote with Nault, Seth Wiederanders and Reeths opposing it. The Sturgeon Bay Historical Society is finalizing the move of the Granary back to the west side next Monday.

Friends of Plum and Pilot Islands making rehabilitation progress

Two of Door County’s smallest islands and most treasured reserves received some valuable attention this past weekend.  Friends of Plum and Pilot Island removed invasive plants, trimmed trails and repaired the roof of the fog signal station among other clean up jobs.  Volunteer Mary Beth Vollmer says a pier section was damaged during the winter so work is being done to repair that this spring. 


Vollmer says a major project is coming up later in July. 


Five additional work days on Plum and Pilot Island are scheduled for later this summer.  Located at the east end of Death’s Door passage and uninhabited, Plum and Pilot Islands are part of the Green Bay National Wildlife Refuge.  You can find contact information on Friends of Plum and Pilot Island below.




Size an issue for Kewaunee County Jail

The jail in Kewaunee County routinely holds approximately 30 to 40 people on a regular basis, a number that well exceeds its total bed count of 22. As a result, all female prisoners get sent to the Door County Jail for their time behind bars as well as some men if things get really tight in Kewaunee County. Sheriff Matt Joski says having to send inmates to other facilities is a cost they have to bear.

Size will certainly be a factor as Venture Architects and Kewaunee County officials continue with their safety building study, which recently completed the first of three phases of the project.

Photographer blasts Cuban travel restrictions

After his first trip helped him produce the internationally recognized book “One Week in Cuba,” Sturgeon Bay author and photographer Tom Jordan wants the opportunity for a second one. According to the New York Times, new travel restrictions placed by the Trump administration would ban group trips as well as visits by cruise ships. It was an educational tour that brought Jordan and his wife to Cuba where he saw its beauty and its despair. Jordan believes the people of Cuba, whom he called “welcoming” and “friendly,” will suffer the most.

Americans can still visit Cuba under certain conditions such as family business, journalistic activity, and humanitarian projects. The rollback of Obama-era changes comes at a time when the Trump administration blames Cuba for playing a destabilizing role in the Western Hemisphere according to a release from the U.S. Treasury Department.

Renard finds multiple opportunities in dairy

Growing up at a cheese factory bearing his family’s name, a lifelong career in dairy was practically a birthright for Cody Renard. The Brussels resident started out in the family business working multiple jobs including cheesemaking before moving onto Agropur after graduating from Michigan Tech University. Since the switch, Renard has climbed the ladder at Agropur in areas of supervision, finance, and sales. As its director of industrial sales and key accounts, Renard is responsible for making sure millions of pounds of the cheese produced in Luxemburg find their way to large companies. He says the quality of the cheese that leaves the Luxemburg plant makes his job a little easier.

According to the U.S. Dairy Export Council, the industry helps create nearly three million jobs nationally with an overall economic impact of more than $628 billion.

Baileys Harbor taking advantage of construction

Construction on Highway 42 in Ephraim has been beneficial for businesses on the lakeside of Door County including those in Baileys Harbor. Vehicle and foot traffic have been up so far in Baileys Harbor as new businesses like The Globe Hotel have opened up. Baileys Harbor Community Association Coordinator Brynn Swanson says many people used to traveling on the other side of the county are learning what the lakeside communities have to offer.

The successful spring is leading up to Baileys Harbor’s biggest celebration of the summer when it welcomes thousands to the area for its Fourth of July festivities.

Friends of Forestville Dam to file recall petitions against two county supervisors

The Friends of the Forestville Dam are filing recall petitions against Door County District 2 Supervisor John Neinas and District 3 Supervisor Roy Engelbert. That follows the County Board of Supervisor's approval of a plan to draw down the Forestville Dam Mill Pond to dry out contaminated sediment from the pond and improve water quality. Opponents say that would do more harm to fish stocks and other aesthetic qualities at the pond. Terry McNulty, Forestville Village President who is against the drawdown, says the recall effort is meant to send a message.

Christine Reid, another member of the Friends of the Forestville Dam, says the group would have rather had the pond dredged. She says that would have been a safer approach for those living along the mill pond and those downstream. reached out to Roy Engelbert who declined comment for this story. Supervisor John Neinas, issued the following statement: 'I fully understand the solution arrived at for fixing the Forestville Mill Pond was very unpopular with those residing on the Mill pond. It is truly sad that those affected with property on the dam did not come to a collective decision to resolve this situation that is both financially effective and in accordance with proven scientific studies. This has been the approved method passed by a majority of the County Board. I did not vote with the majority of the County Board. I am looking forward to seeing the names of those who signed the recall petition.' The Door County Clerk will now verify the petition signatures for accuracy. Once that's completed an election date will be set.

Boating safety includes PFDs for all onboard

As the boating season starts to pick up this summer, the U.S. Coast Guard and other local organizations are reminding boaters to be prepared before heading out on the water.  Coast Guard Auxiliary member Jeff Feuerstein reminds everyone that all on board a watercraft needs a personal floatation device to increase their chance of survival.  


Last year was the deadliest year for Great Lakes drownings.  According to The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project, 39 people died in Lake Michigan alone last year.  You can find a list of tips on how to stay safe on the water with the information below by the Wisconsin DNR.



Boat safety tips
Boat safety equipment
Boating safety equipment

Keep the fun on the water coming -- whether it's a fishing boat, a canoe, or a personal watercraft that "floats your boat."

Operator inexperience, inattention, recklessness, and speeding are the four leading causes of tragic watercraft crashes and the leading cause of death is drowning.

Crash statistics indicate boaters who wear life jackets and take boater safety courses are most likely to stay safe on Wisconsin waters.

Follow these basic safety tips and enjoy Wisconsin's great lakes and rivers with family and friends.

Leave alcohol onshore.
Never use drugs or alcohol before or during boat operation. Alcohol's effects are greatly exaggerated by exposure to sun, glare, wind, noise, and vibration.
Boating Under the Influence 
Use and maintain the right safety equipment.
Have a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket for each person onboard and one approved throwable device for any boat 16 feet and longer. The DNR recommends that everyone wear their lifejackets while on the water.
Have a fire extinguisher.
Have operable boat lights - Always test boat lights before the boat leaves the dock and carry extra batteries. Safe boating - navigating at night Emergency supplies - Keep on board in a floating pouch: cell phone, maps, flares, and 1st aid kit.
Learn about some key equipment to keep you safe:
Safe boating - safety equipment
Paddle Board Safety Tips.
Wear a lifejacket! - More than 90% of boat fatalities related to drowning involve victims not wearing life jackets, you need one for your safety. You also need one because Wisconsin law, as well as U.S. Coast Guard law, treats paddleboards the same as kayaks and canoes. This means there must be a personal flotation device for each person on board. However, the best way to obey this law and to ensure your safety is to just wear the life jacket.
Carry a whistle
Be a competent swimmer
Know how to self-rescue
Know how to tow another board
Know the local regulations and navigation rules
Understand the elements and hazards – winds, tidal ranges, current, terrain
Know when to wear a leash
Be defensive – don’t go where you aren’t supposed to be and avoid other swimmers, boaters, paddleboards
Use proper blade angle to be the most efficient paddle boarder
And, take a safety course, Paddling Safety Course
Be weather wise.
Regardless of the season, keep a close eye on the weather and bring a radio. Sudden wind shifts, lightning flashes and choppy water all can mean a storm is brewing. If bad weather is approaching, get off the water early to avoid a long waiting line in inclement weather.
Safe boating - weather woes 
Take these steps before getting underway.
Tell someone where you are going and when you will return.
Open all hatches and run the blower after you refuel and before getting underway. Sniff for fumes before starting the engine and if you smell fumes, do not start the engine.
Check the boat landing for any local regulations that apply. If boating on the Great Lakes or Mississippi River, review the federal regulations for additional requirements.
Loading and unloading your boat.
Overloading a boat with gear or passengers will make the boat unstable and increase the risk of capsizing or swamping. Abide by the boats capacity plate which located near the boat operators position.
See why it's important not to overload your boat:
Safe boating - overloading 
Follow navigation and other rules on the water.
Never allow passengers to ride on gunwales or seatbacks or outside of protective railings, including the front of a pontoon boat. A sudden turn, stop or start could cause a fall overboard.
After leaving the boat launch, maintain slow-no-wake speed for a safe and legal distance from the launch.
Follow boat traffic rules.
Safe boating - navigation right of way 
Take special cold water precautions in spring.
Cold water temperatures reduce your margin for error on the water: if you fall in or your boat capsizes, you may have as little as two minutes before losing your ability to move your muscles and get back in the boat or seek help.

Avoid the Summer Slide This Year

The Book Corner is looking to help Door County children retain their school-year knowledge by keeping their mind working. Sue Hass, Book Corner manager, believes that reading books throughout the summertime is a good way to avoid what is commonly referred to as “summer slide” and “brain dump”, and what better way to do that than with a dog!



Not only will kids be able to read to a very friendly and attentive 10-year old dog, but they will earn a special surprise at the end.



The book store is run entirely by volunteers and all proceeds collected from the book sales go directly to the Algoma Public Library.

Local gas prices remain lower than last year

With gas prices staying below $3 per gallon this spring, area convenience store owners are hoping that bodes well for a busy summer season in Door and Kewaunee Counties.  After initial forecasts reportedly expected prices to approach $4 per gallon this summer, AAA is forecasting gas prices to fall to an average of $2.70 this summer.  Parv Jandu of Jandu Petroleum says it is too early to tell if an increase in travel is due to lower gas prices or a better economy.



Gas prices in Sturgeon Bay were as low as $2.64 per gallon on Monday.  The average price for regular unleaded gasoline last June peaked at $2.88 a gallon locally, according to 

Renown taxidermist to be featured at Door County Museum

Master taxidermist Mike Orthober will be showcasing his skills at the Door County Historical Museum on June 29.  The “Season of Life” exhibit at the museum has been growing over the past twenty years.  Orthober has mounted a variety of specimens including birds and mammals.  He will be mounting a new bird and talking about the art and science of taxidermy.  Well known for his work in taxidermy, Orthober has won national and world-wide awards, including the “Best in World” for warm-water fish.  He shares some of the more challenging subjects he has worked on in the nature diorama.



Orthober will be at the Door County Historical Museum from 10 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. next Saturday, June 29th.  He will have two other planned demonstrations later this summer on July 20th and August 24th.   Admission is free to the museum which is located on North Fourth Avenue in downtown Sturgeon Bay.


(Photo submitted)

New rescue boat for Gibraltar Fire Department

The Gibraltar Fire & Rescue Department has received a brand new rescue boat that will better serve the community.  The custom built vessel will be called Gibraltar Rescue 50 and will replace the 30-year-old Boston Whaler Sentry the department has been using since 2006.  Gibraltar Fire Chief Andy Bertges says the 28-foot boat was designed based on real-life experiences and has useful features.  It has radar, sonar, night vision capability, and joystick piloting to allow navigation from the stern.  He says the new boat, which can top out at nearly 50 miles per hour, can cover a lot of water.




Bertges says the rescue boat cost approximately $240,000 and was funded through donations collected by the Gibraltar Fire-Rescue Association.  A boat christening ceremony is planned for this Saturday morning at 10 o’clock at Clark Park in Fish Creek.  The Gibraltar Rescue 50 will be available for tours after the christening.  


Photo courtesy of Gibraltar Fire - Rescue Association


Bontempo continues to be inspired by Friends congregation

With a tough battle ahead of her, Pastor Nancy Bontempo knows she will get by with a little help from her members at Friends Community Church in Sturgeon Bay. Last month, Bontempo was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. She chose to get treatments done in Chicago but worried about who would carry the load during the week when she is gone. One by one, bible study sessions and prayer meetings have been picked up by members of the small congregation to help take some of the stress off of Bontempo. She says she feels very blessed to have so many caring members that call Friends Community Church home.

Bontempo says she has guest celebrants lined up this summer just in case the treatments do not go well, but she does plan on taking up the pulpit every Sunday while she battles cancer.


Picture from Friends Community Church

Common Council agenda addresses Sturgeon Bay's future

The Sturgeon Bay Common Council will address the look and feel of the city for years to come with three of its Tuesday meeting agenda items. The council will first discuss extending the planned unit development agreement for the Door County Maritime Museum’s maritime tower project. The current PUD expires in late July and the Door County Maritime Museum has raised $4 million of its $5.5 million goal for its construction. The street closure for next week’s granary move will also be considered after the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society received all of the approvals it needed to move the structure on June 24th. In addition, the city will decide if it will hire Vandewalle & Associates to update its comprehensive plan for just over $76,000. The Sturgeon Bay Common Council will meet on Tuesday at 7 p.m. inside its chambers at city hall.

Jail study to get presented

Kewaunee County Board members will get their first report Tuesday concerning the public safety facility study underway by Venture Architects.  The Milwaukee firm recently completed the study’s first phase, which takes a comprehensive look at the county’s current facility. Kewaunee County Board Chairperson Bob Weidner says it should determine whether a new building needs to be constructed or if renovations can take place.

The Kewaunee County Board will also consider a resolution for more funding for improvements at Riverview ATV Park when it meets Tuesday evening at 6 p.m. You can find a supplementary piece by Sheriff Matt Joski and the department’s current staffing levels that utilize the Kewaunee County Safety Building online with this story.



As we continue down the path of planning for the eventual replacement of our current Safety Building which houses not only the jail but also our emergency communications center, and administrative spaces, I wanted to take some time to discuss a component of a project such as this that is many times overlooked or minimized. While a great deal of the planning will be focused on the physical structure and the many needed facility improvements, the building itself does not represent the greatest investment that is made but rather it will be the staff which is required to run the facility in a safe and effective manner.

      We are very fortunate to have a professional consultant who will be spending a great deal of time analyzing not only the staffing needs in a new environment, but even more importantly analyzing our current staffing levels in our existing facility. Although I have written articles in the past which have very briefly discussed our unique staffing model, I wanted to share where we are actually in regards to overall staffing at the Sheriff’s Department. Recently I was having a discussion with a community member on this very subject and I was surprised when that person told me that we have upwards of 60 staff, or at least that is what they had been told. While I am confident that this number may have been interpreted due to the amazing work that our staff does which makes it appear that we in fact have an Army of Deputies, the truth is quite different.

        Overall at the Sheriff’s Department we have 36 full time staff and three part time staff. Here’s the breakdown: Staring at the top you have myself, my Chief Deputy and two Lieutenants. We have two Administrative Assistants, who process all reports, handle all civil process, and serve as the hub of our administrative team. Of the two Lieutenants one oversees Patrol, Investigations and School Liaison, while the other supervises the Jail, Court Security and Communications Division. We have two full time investigators whose focus is major crime, while a third investigator is dedicated to narcotics investigations. Directly under the two Lieutenants we have four Sergeants. Two of the Sergeants are in the Patrol Division and two are in the Jail/Communications Division. In the Patrol division we have 10 Deputies. These Deputies along with the Sergeants provide law enforcement coverage for the county. Typical coverage consists of two Deputies on any given shift. That’s right; we cover 400 square miles of County with two Deputies. The coverage in the jail is very similar with only two Deputies per shift, as well as being tasked with Inmate transports, Huber monitoring, and of course all emergency dispatching. Yes you read that right, our jailers are also our dispatchers, and our dispatchers are also our jailers. If you are thinking that this is unusual you would be absolutely correct. While this was common in 1968 when our current Safety Building was opened, this is not the norm, nor is it acceptable. We have been granted a sort of “Grandfather” status due to the limitations of our facility, but this will end and with it the need to properly staff our jail and Communications operations.  The standard for a facility of our size has been to have two dedicated jailers and two dedicated dispatchers. The two School Liaison Officers also come from the Jail division and in the summer are assigned back into the Jail/ Dispatch to relieve the pressure on the schedule. The three part-time employees are our cooks who do a phenomenal job of meeting the dietary requirements set forth by the state for those housed in our care. I hope that you can now see how vital it is that we spend a great deal of time looking at staffing levels so as to make the best possible use of our most valuable resource which of course is our staff. If anyone has any questions on this subject or any other related to our facility study, please do not hesitate to contact me. We are still doing tours of the current facility and those that have taken the time to walk through it have all remarked what an eye opening experience it was. 

Stollenwerk named Fyr Bal chieftain

The burning of the winter witch this year in Ephraim was 35 years in the making for resident Jim Stollenwerk. The former construction equipment manufacturer from Milwaukee was elected as the village’s Fyr Bal chieftain, which was celebrated Saturday night when he lit the ceremonial bonfire. Stollenwerk has served the village in a number of capacities including three terms as a trustee and a member of the Hardy Gallery Board. After moving to Ephraim 35 years ago, the village continues to be a place Stollenwerk loves.

At age 89, Stollenwerk hopes that even though he and his wife Alice will likely have to go to an assisted living facility that he can continue to stay at his beach house for summers in Ephraim for many years to come.



Photo by Ephraim Business Council

Big crowds attend Kewaunee County Breakfast on the Farm

Over 5,800 people stood in long lines and a few raindrops at Kinnard Farms in Casco Sunday morning for the annual Kewaunee County Breakfast on the Farm. After attending the polka mass and devouring the all-you-can-eat dairy breakfast, attendees explored the tents featuring children’s activities, farm animals, and educational resources. Between 400 to 500 people volunteered behind the scenes to provide a positive experience for visitors by doing a number of tasks including serving breakfast and giving approximately 4,000 people tours. Whether you dined or worked at the event, Kewaunee County Dairy Promotion Committee President J.J. Pagel says it is great to see the support for the dairy industry.

For those already planning ahead, next year’s Kewaunee County Breakfast on the Farm will help celebrate the 100th Anniversary of Luxemburg’s Salentine Homestead Dairy on Father’s Day 2020.



Sevastopol Pioneer Ecological Reserve Officially Open

Two Sevastopol teachers are volunteering their time and resources to help open some public walking trails. The Pioneer Ecological Reserve opened Sunday morning with a kick-off ceremony for the public. The Reserve is old farmland that was turned into a nature reserve for the Sevastopol school district. Mike Madden, a student and teacher at Sevastopol for 35 years, says that the trails are now being groomed to make them more accessible for the public. Madden says that the trails are the perfect oppurtunity for multiple learning resources such as a deer exclosure, planting trees, teaching students survival skills, and overall enjoying the beauty. Madden says that he is hoping people will come and view the new trails themselves.



There are two trails open for the public to use. One is named after former superintendent Carl Sholz and one for Madden. The trails are free for the public to use, and can be found right off Highway 57 on Dunn Road. 

Learning to Use Safe Internet Skills

Summer in Door and Kewaunee counties means children and teens will have more time to be on their phones and on the internet. A local internet specialist says that having honest and open conversations about what apps and websites kids use is important in preventing dangerous situations. Nathan Drager, owner of Quantum PC in Sturgeon Bay, says that more and more apps and websites are using anonymous chat. Because the chat is anonymous, more incidents could occur. That’s why Drager believes  it is important for parents to use the apps their kids use and to be open and honest about the usage. 



Besides running anti-viruses, having a good firewall, and avoiding risky websites, Drager goes on to explain that when parents learn how to use the apps their kids use, they begin to see the value of what their child is doing. He also said, parents and kids who feel comfortable talking about the internet can prevent issues in the long run. Quantum PC offers training sessions and general awareness talks. Drager believes it is important for parents to know, no matter what it is important for them to stay informed. Drager was recently named entrepreneur of the year for 2019 by the Door County Economic Development Corporation. Quantum PC was voted best in Door County for computer repairs by a ballot done on

Poet shares views on getting to Door County from anywhere

Sturgeon Bay poet Mike Orlock says there are no accidental tourists in Door County and he's written a new book around that theme.  Orlock is a retired teacher, newspaper movie critic and poet who now makes his home in Sturgeon Bay.  “You Can Get Here From There” is a collection of poems that summarize Orlock's feelings and experiences about the Door Peninsula which readers cannot discover by accident.


Orlock uses “You Can Get Here From There” to show readers his transformation from a world of subdivisions, shopping centers and multiplexes to a closer relationship with the elements.



Orlock has also shared his love of poetry through the Dickinson Poetry Series at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Door County.

Local Veterans Receive Assistance

Nancy Hutchinson, founder of both the Adopt-a-Soldier and Adopt-a-Veteran program, is branching out to give assistance to the veterans of the Door County area.  Alongside the Adopt-a-Soldier program she is planning fundraisers and a trip to Manitowoc later this year to bring Vietnam veterans to the Wall That Heals, a replica of the Vietnam War Memorial.  Hutchinson stresses the importance of veterans reaching out if they are in need.


Hutchinson wants veterans to know that there are support networks available to them and they do not have to face these challenges alone.

Inactive Voters to Receive Postcard from State

Registered voters who have not voted in the past four years can expect a postcard mailed to them this week from the Wisconsin Elections Commission. In the time between the 2014 and 2018 general elections, there have been 11 statewide elections and primaries and approximately 114,000 Wisconsinites haven’t participated in a single one. Recipients of these postcards will have two options: sign and return to stay registered or re-register if your name or address has changed. Megan Wolf, Wisconsin’s chief election official, says that the mailings are not designed to remove active voters, but rather help identify individuals who haven’t voted. Susan Kohout (KO-howt), Coordinator for the League of Women Voters of Door County, says that citizens have much more power than some believe.



The next election for this area will be the 2020 Spring Election Presidential Preference Vote. Visit MyVote.WI.Gov for assistance.

Shore Side Homes Taking a Beating

With water levels increasing every rainfall, a local real estate agent explains it is important for home owners to take the extra precautions to keep their homes dry. As more and more rain comes down, water levels will rise and cause possible damage to homes and properties along the shore line. There have been multiple reports of back yards being over saturated and basements flooded. Sara Glenn, a Realtor from True North, says that there are multiple ways to help keep your house dry during the rainy days. 



Glenn says checking the sump pumps in basements on a regular basis could also lower the risk of flood damage. She states that, water levels have run in cycles throughout the last few decades and that home owners should not worry that this will be a constant issue. 

Kewaunee FFA truck-tractor pull became a big event from a humble start

It's 17 years since the Kewaunee County FFA Alumni started a truck-tractor pull on one member's farm to raise a few dollars for local FFA programs.  Now the event is a full-blown extravaganza that attracts hundreds of fans.  Ed Patek, :: PAH-TECK :: of the FFA alumni group, says the event has evolved from stock farm vehicles to equipment solely designed for competition.



The proceeds from the truck-tractor pull go to high school FFA programs and to college scholarships for agriculture students.  Patek says support for those efforts and a chance for some great family fun are the main attractions for fans.



The 17th Annual Kewaunee FFA County Alumni Truck-Tractor pull is set for June 21st starting at 6:00 PM at the Ag Heritage Farm on Highway 42 south of Kewaunee.

Sources and Risk Factors of Groundwater Contamination Revealed

Residents of Kewaunee County will be able to have their questions answered when it comes to tainted drinking water in Northeast Wisconsin. Dr. Mark Borchardt, a research microbiologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, will be addressing some of the suspicions that community members have about potential causes including livestock farming, human waste, and aquifer geology. More importantly, he is excited about discussing ways to understand and prevent contamination with people that are excited to do so.


He adds that it hasn’t always been this way but it has changed recently and definitely for the greater good.


Dr. Borchardt will be presenting his program June 19th at 7 PM at the Kress Pavilion and the next night at the Kewaunee County Fairgrounds in Luxemburg at 6.

Kickoff to Summer Celebration

A dual effort between the city of Sturgeon Bay and the local YMCA brought the Kickoff to Summer event to Sunset Park on Saturday.  The free event featured bounce houses, a petting zoo, a rock climbing wall, and many other family activities.  Tyler Powell, Association Youth Director at the Door County YMCA, says this event is a great way for local people to connect with one another and the city.



The Kickoff to Summer event is just the first event in a long list of activities the YMCA has planned for the summer.

Gibraltar Talks

The history of Fish Creek will be on display throughout this summer season. Different speakers from around the Fish Creek area will be presenting on local topics. The Gibraltar Historical Association is holding these programs to help educate and entertain those who may not know the history of the area. Director of the Gibraltar Historical Association, Laurie Buske, says that there are many different topics that will be covered throughout the season.



The first speech of the series is about the “White Gull Gals”, it will be on Thursday, June 20 at the old town hall.

Sevastopol Schools Construction

Big changes for the Sevastopol schools are coming as construction teams begin new additions. A $25.1 million referendum that passed in November 2018 is giving the Sevastopol schools a new look. The schools’ 1924 and 1946 sections will be demolished in the process and will be on a one-for-one replacement when it comes to space. New technology access for the schools is also included in the budget. The schools Superintendent, Kyle Luedtke, says that multiple new additions are coming as a part of the referendum.



The construction is scheduled to be finished in the early months of 2021 and the school is looking to move in that upcoming fall. A school board meeting regarding an update on the construction is scheduled for Thursday, June 20 in the high school library.

High lake levels change entry locations to Whitefish Dunes Beach

High water levels on Lake Michigan are making it a challenge to get to the beach at Whitefish Dunes State Park.  Rising lake levels have already forced the closure of the main entrance near the park's Nature Center.  Park Superintendent Erin Brown Stender says visitors have to walk a little further to get to the beach.


Brown Stender says conditions at the second entry point for Whitefish Dune State Park beach have also been impacted by the higher lake levels.  It could also be closed if conditions deteriorate further.

70th Anniversary of the Ephraim Historical Foundation

The Ephraim Historical Foundation (EHF) is hosting a summer long celebration in honor of the 70th anniversary of the Foundation.  For what started as an answer to preserving Ephraim’s Pioneer Schoolhouse, the EHF has grown to include many more historical buildings and records.  Emily Irwin, outreach director and curator for the EHF, is in awe of the support that the small town of less than 300 residents gives to the Foundation.



The celebration begins on June 14 with tours and open houses, and will run up until October.

DPAS has new state-of-the-art telescopes

The Door Peninsula Astronomical Society’s (DPAS) new telescopes are allowing them to look into the night sky like never before. DPAS has two new telescopes, one for looking in our solar system like the other planets and our moon. The other will be used for looking even deeper in the night sky. Dave Lenius, a member of the board on DPAS, says the telescopes are also attached with cameras that will be able to take pictures of what they are seeing.



You have a chance to see the telescopes in action at the next DPAS viewing night on Saturday, July 6th. 

Crossroads Trail Run highlights beauty of Door County

Next weekend will officially be the first weekend of the summer and you have a chance to see the beauty of Door County at Crossroads at Big Creek. The 10th Annual Crossroads Trail Run will take place on Saturday, June 22nd with the run times starting at 8 AM. There are three options of distances, a 2K walk/fun run, a 5K and a 10K. Co-Director of the Crossroads Trail Run Deb Whitelaw-Gorski says it’s a great way to get in some exercise in a beautiful setting.



The entrance fee is $30. You can register online before the race at or register the day of the race. The prizes for finishing the run are a t-shirt and a native tree to plant. Snacks and refreshments will be served after.

Open Door Pride Fest celebrates being yourself

Open Door Pride Fest is not just for those in the LGBTQ community so says the organizer of the event. Cathy Grier, Founder and Chair of Open Door Pride, says that’s why the event is free, so everybody can come out and celebrate. She mentioned that it’s a really important event for those in the LGBTQ community as well.



Open Door Pride Fest will be on Saturday, June 22nd at Martin Park in Sturgeon Bay from 11 AM to 5 PM. It will cap off Open Door Pride Week in Sturgeon Bay as proclaimed by Mayor David Ward. The event will include live music, a live DJ and belly dancers.

Granary move set for June 24 pending council approval

The historic Teweles & Bandeis Granary looks to be making the move back to the west side of Sturgeon Bay on June 24 if the city council makes the final approval on Tuesday.  Acccording to a Sturgeon Bay Historical Society social media post late Friday, all moving permits have been approved and the move for the granary is set for 5am on Monday, June 24.  The post states that all city signatures for street closures have been obtained and contractors are ready to make move.  The final decision rests with the Sturgeon Bay Common Council on which parcel of land the granary will finally call home.  The DNR established the Ordinary High Water Mark for both parcels at 92 Maple Street and 100 Maple Street which is being challenged in court by a group of local citizens.  The granary was moved to the east side in March of 2018 temporarily to avoid being torn down by a demolition order given by the Sturgeon Bay Fire Department.  The regular meeting of the council is set for 7 pm on Tuesday at City Hall. 

Sturgeon Bay street repairs ahead of schedule

Despite dealing with deadlines and inclement weather this spring, the City of Sturgeon Bay Street Department has managed a strong start to the season.  City Engineer Chad Shefchik says the projects including East Pine Street and West Elm Street have finished on time and budget.  He says another street job had added urgency.



Georgia Street reconstruction will be starting soon, according to Shefchik.  He adds that some potential flooding issues on Memorial Drive are being monitored with the additional precipitation and higher water levels in the bay causing concern.     


Kewaunee Fire Museum adding audio tour

The Kewaunee Fire Station Museum which opened a year ago will be offering an audio tour in the near future.  Similar to the audio tour provided on the Tug Ludington which sits in the harbor, the information will give visitors a chance to hear the historical significance of the fire apparatuses that are stored in the museum.  Jim Kleiman, Kewaunee Fire Department Captain, says the museum stands out at night and has fire equipment dating back over 170 years ago.



The museum houses four pieces of historic equipment including an 1845 hand tub being the oldest fire apparatus on site.  Kleiman says the large glass windows allow all the items to be viewed from the outside anytime.  Plans are to open the museum every Sunday during Music in the Park which is held right across from the street, according to Kleiman.


(Photo courtesy of Kewaunee Fire Museum)


Ericksons to receive the Anne Kok Award

Help of Door County will be saluting a special couple who have been long-time advocates at the organization's 40th anniversary next week at the Kress Pavilion.  Bob and Connie Erickson of Egg Harbor will be given the Anne Kok Social Justice Award next Thursday at the Help of Door County annual meeting.  Steve Vickman, the executive director, says the Ericksons embody the ideals set forward by Anne Kok. 


The event is sponsored by the Door County Medical Center and will highlight the accomplishments of Help of Door County over the last 40 years.  You can find more information about the annual meeting below.


SUV sales taking over the auto market locally

Following a national trend that has seen sedan car sales drop and Sports Utility Vehicles increase in demand has local car dealers coming up with creative incentives to move inventory.  Jesse Yahnke, sales manager at Jorns Chevrolet in Kewaunee, says leasing options and special pricing on vehicles are making driving bigger vehicles more attractive.  He says the change has been noticeable going back ten years.



Yahnke adds that SUVs are as economical in some cases as most sedans while offering more room and a luxurious drive.  


Sunshine, warmth wanted by apple growers

They are a little better off than most farmers who have been flooded out of some of their fields this spring, but apple growers in Door and Kewaunee Counties would not mind a little sunshine and warmth either. Bill Roethle of Hillside Apples in Casco has been able to get out to his trees to do the necessary work needed to prevent his crop from diseases. He says the wet, cool weather makes it easier for trees to get infected by diseases like apple scab, which severely limited his harvest in 2017.

Despite the weather, Roethle says the trees look to be in great shape and expects another strong harvest this year.

Midsummer's Music launches 2019 season

The piano is tuned and the bows are up for the opening week of concerts for Door County’s Midsummer’s Music. The chamber music series relies on some of the finest musicians in the country including the Chicago Symphony and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra to play in unique venues across the county. Artistic director Jim Berkenstock is happy many of the musicians come back year after year to participate.

After Friday’s gala performance at Birch Creek’s Juniper Hall, Midsummer’s Music will continue to celebrate its 2019 theme of “Mendelssohn, Mozart, and Much More” June 16th at the Kress Pavilion in Egg Harbor, June 20th at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Sister Bay and Unitarian Universalist Church in Ephraim on June 21st. You can listen to a preview of the upcoming concerts online with this story.




Tebon, Culligan Sturgeon Bay wins national excellence award

You can include a "congratulations" after you yell “Hey Culligan Man” to Jeff Tebon after he earned a national award this week.  For the second time in three years, Culligan Sturgeon Bay was given the Emmett J. Culligan National Award of Excellence for being one of the top 16 dealers in the country. Dealers are ranked on their performance based on their market size and water characteristics. Tebon is proud to be a part of a legacy business after taking over for his father Cliff and seeing his kids get into the fold as well.

He also credits his employees for keeping his family business strong for over 60 years, with some having been employed by Culligan Sturgeon Bay for over 35 years.



NWTC celebrates 15th year in Luxemburg

Northeast Wisconsin Technical College-Luxemburg Regional Learning Center manager Sarah Nelson has seen its facilities grow as much as the skills of the students that have trusted them with their education.  After outgrowing its space at Holy Trinity School in Casco, NWTC opened its new space along Highway 54 in Luxemburg in 2004. A big reason for the move for was the rapidly changing world of education and its shift towards technology. That is where Nelson has seen the biggest change since she was named the Luxemburg Regional Learning Center manager 19 years ago.

The NWTC Luxemburg Regional Learning Center now serves approximately 1,200 students on an annual basis with accounting, nursing assistant, and business management courses its most popular.

Accident stops traffic on Michigan Street Bridge

Motorists were stopped on the Michigan Street Bridge for a little bit longer than the usual boat traffic on Thursday due to an accident.

According to a report from the Sturgeon Bay Police Department, a vehicle was traveling eastbound just after 6:30 p.m. when the bridge began going up. The driver of the vehicle told police their brake lines went out as it collided with the bridge's drop down arm and one of its guard rails. No injuries were reported after the crash and the bridge was reopened later in the evening.

Door County Y wants to repeat Broadway By the Bay success

The Door County YMCA is hoping for more rave reviews for the second Broadway By the Bay concert.  The event offers dinner and a show that includes performers with experience on the Great White Way, including some with Door County connections.  Heidi Erickson, Executive Director for the Northern Door Y, says community reaction to last year's Broadway By the Bay prompted the Y to do a sequel.



Jonathon Zeng headlines this summer's Broadway By the Bay. The dinner concert is scheduled for July 18th at the Donald and Carol Kress Pavillion on Church Street in Egg Harbor.  For more information log onto

Wet spring means higher mosquito protection needed

The extremely wet conditions this spring is making for a good breeding ground for mosquitoes in the area.  That is having local health officials warning people to prepare for the outdoors this summer.  Not only can mosquitoes be annoying but the spreading of diseases is a major medical concern.  Door County Public Health Educator Chelsea Smies says wearing long-sleeve clothing and spaying on repellents can protect you.



West Nile virus is an illness spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. The type of mosquitoes that spread West Nile virus can be found in every county in Wisconsin.  You can find more information on how to fight the bite below.

Series of Herbal Workshops in Door County

Connecting with plants and herbs could be your newest healing source for an abundance of problems. Joanne Bauman is a Kansas native herbalist, a teacher, writer, herb grower, and medicine-maker, and she will be offering workshops this weekend that aid in a wide variety of issues from pain and inflammation to natural home cleaning. Her easy-going teaching style makes learning and using plant-based healing accessible to everyone.



Joanne will be teaching at The Pearl of Door County in Sturgeon Bay June 14th through the 16th. All of the workshops include items you will make and take home. Contact or register online at


Photo courtesy of

Pioneer Ecological Reserve celebrating Grand Opening

After remaining dormant for about 15 years, the Pioneer Ecological Reserve is getting much-needed attention and use this spring.  The Sevastopol School District purchased the land in 1962 with a $5,000 state grant under the leadership of Carl Scholtz who was the school superintendent at the time.  Second-grade teachers Katie Grooters and Brooke Tanck, along with other faculty, started trimming the overgrown trails this spring and utilizing the 71-acre reserve as an educational resource again for students and the public.  Tanck credits Mike Madden who preserved and maintained the land for many years to make it an outdoor classroom.  She shares some of the improvements that have been accomplished recently.




The Grand Opening celebration is being planned for this Saturday from noon until 2 pm.  The public is invited to attend and hike the new and improved Pioneer Ecological Reserve which is located about one-half mile off east of Highway 57 on Dunn Road.  



(photo courtesy of School District of Sevastopol facebook)  


JFC budget reopens Kewaunee County prison discussion

Kewaunee County officials have about five million reasons why they are going to be paying closer attention to the state budget process in the coming weeks. The Joint Finance Committee recently approved $5 million to be spent to replace the aging Green Bay Correctional Institution. The money would be spent to purchase the land, put in utilities, and ask for proposals. Kewaunee County was considered a possible landing spot when a GBCI replacement plan was brought up during the last budget session.  County Board Chairperson Bob Weidner says a number of conditions would have to be met before serious discussions could begin.

Officials in Algoma and Luxemburg have already voiced their interest in having the possible prison built in their jurisdictions.

Sturgeon Bay photographer finalist for book award

 A vacation to Cuba nearly turned into an international award for Sturgeon Bay photographer and author Tom Jordan. His latest book, “One Week in Cuba,” was named a finalist for the 2019 International Book Awards in the photography category. A retired advertising executive, Jordan was able to compete on the same level as professional photographers from Thailand, Switzerland, New York, and Phoenix. The recognition was humbling for Jordan, who says it is challenging to layout a photography book.

Jordan says his favorite subjects he shot during his trip were the Cuban dancers because of the candid pictures he was able to produce. His two books about Sturgeon Bay also received similar recognition in the past.

Wisconsin senator demands details on ag deal

Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin wants to know how farmers in Door and Kewaunee Counties can expect to benefit from a trade agreement between the United States and Mexico. According to Bloomberg, President Donald Trump tweeted last week that Mexico would increase their agricultural purchases from the U.S. as a part of a deal on border security in exchange for avoiding proposed tariffs. Farmers were worried retaliatory tariffs on their products could have done even more harm to their bottom line. Senator Baldwin says her letter to President Trump is a request for answers for an agreement short on details.

Senator Baldwin is hopeful a deal is worked out so farmers can be certain there is a buyer for their products. According to Dairy Herd Management, Mexico is the largest exporter of U.S. dairy products at about $1.4 billion in annual sales and 15.8 percent of its milk production.

Construction begins at Gibraltar

You will have to wait until the beginning of the school year to use the entrance at Gibraltar Secondary School. Almost as quickly as students could start their summer vacations, construction crews moved in to begin a $4.4 million transformation of its library and media center. Gibraltar Area Schools superintendent Tina Van Meer says she is happy to see the work begin.

Visitors to the school are being directed to enter the building through the elementary entrance until school begins this fall. The project will not be done until around Christmas, but walls will be up to allow classes to still take place.

Naval ship giving Death's Door travelers rare scenic treat

Some travelers on the waters around the Door County peninsula’s tip have been getting a look of a naval combat ship this past week.  The USS Indianapolis has been making trial runs through Death’s Door Passage recently.  The Littoral Combat Ship is being built at Marinette Marine for the Navy.  Hoyt Purinton of the Washington Island Ferry says the crews on the ship stay in communication with other water vessels. 


Jim Robinson of Shoreline Scenic Cruises in Gills Rock says his customers are surprised and amazed at the sight of a naval ship on the Great Lakes. 



The USS Indianapolis LCS-17 is 373 feet long and can travel in speed up to 52 miles per hour.  The naval ship was launched in April of 2018.  


(Photo courtesy of Jim Robinson)

Field days unite farmers with conservation efforts

While the raindrops fell over Door and Kewaunee Counties Wednesday morning, you could find many farmers learning about the latest efforts to be more conservation minded. Peninsula Pride Farms and the Door Kewaunee Demonstration Farm Network hosted approximately 50 farmers for a field day at Kinnard Farms in Casco. On display was a one-of-a-kind manure applicator that can apply nutrients to standing corn and alfalfa fields without using as much heavy equipment during the growing season. Doug Sutter from Vanderloop Equipment in Brillion says field days are a great opportunity to show multiple farmers the latest in technology.

Tony Brey of Brey Cycle Farms in Sturgeon Bay says he has been able to take a lot away from the field days since his operation joined Peninsula Pride Farms in 2016.

Peninsula Pride Farms is made up of 60 farms across southern Door and Kewaunee Counties with a mission of addressing agriculture's role in improving the area's water issues. Wednesday's field day was also part of annual "Lunch on the Farm" in celebration of June Dairy Month.


Pride Pumps helping fund Gibraltar band Disney trip

A donation from the Jandu Petroleum Pride Pumps is going to help send the Gibraltar band back to Disney World in 2022. Gibraltar sets up a Disney trip every four years so every band student gets a chance to go. The last trip was in 2018. It’s not just walking around the park when the students go to Disney World says Gibraltar band leader Charlie Eckhardt. Students go to workshops and compete against other schools from around the country in “Festival Disney.”



The $750.66 donation from the Jandu Petroleum Pride Pumps will go directly to the Gibraltar Music Boosters to fund the trip. The Pride Pump promotion is a joint effort of Jandu Petroleum and The promotion raised over $11,000 for Door and Kewaunee County school districts for the 2018-2019 school year.

Sturgeon Bay says Asian Carp control needed to protect smallmouth bass stocks

Sturgeon Bay City Administrator Josh Vanlieshout favors any measure that would keep the Asian Carp out of the Great Lakes system.  That comes after members of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative called on the federal government to make stronger investments when creating Asian Carp barriers. Those calls came from U.S. and Canadian mayors at the group's annual meeting in Sheboygan. Van Lieshout supports those sentiments and anything else that can protect recreational fishing that attracts visitors to Sturgeon Bay.


Members of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative specifically want more money spent on carp control efforts at a dam southwest of Chicago which is a direct link between the Mississippi River and Lake Michigan.

Seasonal restoration work means one day closure at Egg Harbor Beach

The Village of Egg Harbor beach will be closed for one day this week.  Work crews will be doing extensive replacement work for sand washed away by melting snow and ice and spring rains.  Cody DeMeuse, Interim Director of Public Works, says the extent of work makes a full closure necessary.



Egg Harbor's beach will be open for full use this weekend. The work is not part of a planned beach expansion.  That work will begin this fall.

New Community Center Planned in Lincoln

Residents of Lincoln voted to approve the building of a new community center and town hall in the Kewaunee County town.  This is the third time plans for the project received elector approval, with this vote tallying 55 yeas to 10 nays.  The new buildings will allow Lincoln to broaden their partnership with the Lincoln-Casco First Responders.  Along with equipment storage, the first responders will be able to host training sessions there.  Town of Lincoln Chairman Cory Cochart is happy with the results of the vote and the impact it will have on the community.



 Cochart hopes to keep the project as local as possible since many area contractors have shown interest in the job.  If all goes to plan, the project is scheduled to break ground in late summer.

Ephraim seeking grants to restore public access and restore community wetlands

The Village of Ephraim is moving ahead with efforts to restore the community wetlands and make them more accessible to residents and visitors.  The village will be applying for grants to help fund restoration work.  Public Works Manager Russ Salfi says existing walkways need extensive work in order for visitors to experience the natural beauty of the wetlands.



Salfi says the Village of Ephraim is also working with UW-Oshkosh researchers and the Door County Land Trust to identify and eliminate invasive plant species while restoring native vegetation in the wetlands. 

Egg Harbor moves its fight against invasive plants inland

The Village of Egg Harbor's fight against invasive plants is now moving from along public properties and waterways toward private lands inland.  Village staffers have worked on targeting and controlling invasive plants such as garlic mustard and Japanese knotweed.  Village Administrator Ryan Heise says similar efforts are now focusing on helping private landowners to control invasives.


The Village of Egg Harbor has been getting help with invasive identification and control from the Door County Soil and Water Conservation Department.

Governor Evers says coastal grants show successes of the Clean Water Act

Governor Tony Evers says the federal Clean Water Act is working with help from a state program that funds water quality improvements. The Wisconsin Coastal Management grant program has paid for wetlands impact studies in Door County and lakeshore coastal recreational studies for Kewaunee County.  Governor Evers says the successes of such grants show just how far water clean-up efforts have come since the Clean Water Act was created.



Governor Evers has presented coastal management grants to Iron County, Ozaukee County and Green Bay for water resource management, wetlands rehabilitation, and beach restoration.



(Photo from Gov. Tony Evers roundtable discussion earlier this year in Door County)

Egg Harbor Library offers Lake Fishing 101 class

Visitors and locals who just want to learn about fishing equipment, baits, technique and how to find the fish hideouts can count on the local library this week.  On this Friday, the rods and reels casting class is one hour and starts at 1 pm at the Egg Harbor branch of the Door County Library.  Beth Lokken, youth services director at the Door County Library says this area offers a great opportunity for fishing and fun even if you are a novice. 



The fishing poles and tackle boxes are available to be checked out at the Egg Harbor Library anytime.  You can find more information on programs offered this summer at


(Photo courtesy of Door County Library website)



Nicolet Bank cuts ribbon on new location

Nicolet Bank celebrated the grand opening of the new location in Sturgeon Bay Tuesday afternoon.  The new building is located directly across from the old location and started business hours this past week.  Commercial Lending Officer Jamie Alberts says the project was a total team effort.



Nicolet Bank employs 28 people at the Sturgeon Bay downtown branch that is celebrating over 130 years of banking service in Door County.   The bank was first known as Sturgeon Bay Bank and then Baylake Bank before merging with Nicolet in 2016.  You can see the video from Tuesday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony below.


Name released in tractor fatality in Luxemburg

The name of the man who died in a tractor fire early Saturday morning in Kewaunee County has been officially released.  According to the Kewaunee County Sheriff’s Department media release, Joseph J. Stahl, 54, of Green Bay was the victim of the tractor accident reported on Tonet Road north of County Road K.  Luxemburg Fire & Rescue and Red River First Responders arrived at the scene and were able to use the “jaws of life” to enter the tractor but Stahl died at the scene.  The investigation into the accident is ongoing and power lines near the area were not part of the original accident as first thought.  

Home build hitting its stride

Figuring last year’s Door County Habitat for Humanity home build did not even break ground until the final days of May, it was going to be easy for the crew this time to be ahead of schedule. Last week the home build volunteers poured in the basement walls and did other site preparation work ahead of the home’s framing. A welcome sight for Door County Habitat for Humanity Executive Director David Van Dyke has been the Bright family, which has had at least one person on site for every build day this year. Van Dyke says it is important to have that kind of family commitment to the home build itself.

Partner families like The Brights need to contribute hundreds of “sweat equity hours” to qualify for the home. Door County Habitat for Humanity is need of volunteers for the build days on Tuesdays and Thursdays.



Changes to Lord's Prayer coming but not here

The Vatican is making changes to a well-known prayer in the coming months, and Pastor John Schuster of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Luxemburg and Holy Trinity Church in Casco says Americans will not have to worry. Pope Francis recently announced changes to the “Our Father” last week, calling it a fix to a poor English translation of the centuries-old prayer. Instead of “lead us not into temptation,” the phrase will now be “do not let us fall into temptation.” Schuster says changes were only approved by Italian churches, but that does not mean Catholic bishops around the world will not consider it for their own members in the future.

Schuster says the United States Council of Bishops would have to approve changes to the Our Father before it would become a normal part of the mass.

Senator Johnson hopes to steer Republican revival

Last November left Senator Ron Johnson the last statewide Republican to hold office, something he hopes fellow party members in Door and Kewaunee Counties can help change. After U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin defended her seat and Democrats swept the statewide executive branch seats in the November election, some pondered if Senator Johnson would run again for his U.S. Senate seat or give a try at running for Wisconsin governor. He told that he is focused on 2020 and it was too early to decide. He admitted though that this is a reality he did not think he would face. Work is already underway to find out what went wrong and how it can be fixed.

Senator Johnson says leading by example is a great way to transform people’s lives and show how their principles can work.

Manure digester plan goes to Lincoln Plan Commission

Another farm in Kewaunee County could be close to installing a manure digester system with the capabilities of manufacturing a renewable energy source. The town of Lincoln Plan Commission met with representatives from Kinnard Farms in Casco and Detroit-based DTE Energy to discuss the future of a renewable energy facility on the property. Similar to a project already underway at Pagel’s Ponderosa Dairy in Kewaunee, cow manure from Kinnard Farms would be transported to the facility with four above-ground digesters to create methane gas for different markets including California. Town plan commission chairperson Mick Sagrillo says Kinnard Farms and DTE Energy are committed to doing the project right because of what it is at stake if they cheat or do something wrong.

Sagrillo says putting anything other than manure into their proposed system could cost them up to nine months of gas production time. A conditional use permit and development agreement will be up for consideration on June 19th if all details are ironed out and if Kinnard Farms has received its Livestock Siting Conditional Use Permit from the town at that time. The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at the Lincoln Town Hall.

Former Nicolet Bank building on the market

Nicolet Bank's former downtown Sturgeon Bay location is now up for sale.  That means 36,000 square feet of space is available for re-utilization.  Nicolet recently completed a move to 236 North 4th Avenue near Jefferson Street from 217 North 4th Avenue near Kentucky Street, which had served as Baylake Bank's headquarters prior to the 2016 merger of both banks.  Nicolet Bank's Senior Vice President for Commercial Banking Jamie Alberts says technological changes created more space than needed in the old downtown building.



Alberts says Nicolet Bank was approached by two parties before the former downtown site was vacated, although no offers were made.  He says the building, which opened in 1982, is generating some ideas for reuse.



All Door County locations, including the now vacated downtown Sturgeon Bay building, were kept open after Nicolet and Baylake merged while two Green Bay area branches were closed.

Summer programs for Ephraim Historical Foundation begin Sunday

A 25-year tradition continues in Ephraim this Sunday with sing-alongs at Ephraim Village Hall.  The Sunday Sing-alongs are free to the public and include a variety of musical renditions.  Emily Irwin, outreach director and curator for the Ephraim Historical Foundation, describes the sing-alongs that start at 7:30 pm and will go for the next five weeks.



Dave Olson, accompanied by Gladys Austgen, will lead this Sunday’s sing-along which will include love songs and ballads.  You can find a listing of the upcoming summer events sponsored by the Ephraim Historical Foundation below. 




Sunday SingAlongs: A local and visitor favorite, Sunday SingAlongs bring families and friends together in the Ephraim Village Hall (9996 Water Street) for an hour of music and song.  SingAlongs are held at 7:30 p.m. each Sunday beginning June 16 and continuing through July 14.
History Speaks: This free lecture series is held the first four Tuesdays in July at 7:30 p.m. in the Ephraim Village Hall (9996 Water Street).  Topics include:
July 2 - The Life of Simon Kahquados with Dave Lea
July 9 - Rock Island Insights with Richard Purinton
July 16 - The Knudson House with Linda Carey
July 23 - An Evening with Jens Jensen by Roger Kuhns
Schoolroom Lessons: Visitors will experience class in a one-room schoolhouse during the 1920s and 1930s, complete with reading, writing and arithmetic.  This free program is open to all ages and will be held on Tuesdays, July 2-July 23.  Schoolroom Lessons begin promptly at 11 a.m. and last for 30 minutes in the Pioneer Schoolhouse Museum (9988 Moravia Street). Tardiness is not allowed!

Child's Play:  With a craft, a story, and a snack, Child's Play offers a fun and educational program for children ages 4-10. Space is limited for this free program, and registration is recommended online at or by calling (920) 854-9688. Child's Play is held in collaboration with the Door County Library, Ephraim Branch. The program runs from 10 - 11:15 a.m.  This year's dates, topics, and locations include: 
June 27 - Superheroes and Hometown Heroes with special guest, firefighter Mike McCutcheon - at the Anderson Barn Museum (3060 Anderson Lane)
July 11 - Animal Heroes with special guests, Therapy Dog Nellie Bly and Maggie Peterman at the Anderson Barn Museum (3060 Anderson Lane)
July 18 - Lighthouse Hero with special guest Sue Jarosh at the Pioneer Schoolhouse Museum (9988 Moravia Street)
July 25 - Birthday Party at the Anderson Barn Museum (3060 Anderson Lane)


(photo courtesy of Tad Dukehart)


Choosing the right executor in your will is crucial

One key aspect of estate plans and wills is sometimes overlooked, according to one local attorney.  Jim Downey from Blazkovec, Blazkovec & Downey in Algoma and Sturgeon Bay, says the roles and responsibilities of the executor of the estate or trust come with a lot of work.  He says the decision to choose the representative to handle the duties can be difficult at times.



Downey says he sees that most executors chosen for either the financial or healthcare power of attorneys are usually closest geographically.   




Door County communities join call for stronger Asian Carp barriers

Leaders from Sturgeon Bay and Egg Harbor are joining mayors from St. Lawrence River and Great Lakes cities in demanding stronger actions to keep Asian Carp from entering Lake Michigan.  The Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River Initiative met in Sheboygan this week and signed a declaration supporting planned barriers for the Brandon Road Dam near Chicago.  They also called on Congress to invest more in that area.  Egg Harbor Village Administrator Ryan Heise was a guest at the Sheboygan conference.  He says a major portion of Door County's economy is at risk from Asian Carp infestation.



Sturgeon Bay Mayor David Ward also supports any barrier to stop the fish, although he'd like to see more action further down the Mississippi River.



The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recently announced plans to add an electrical grid and underwater speakers near Chicago to deter the Asian Carp from moving further toward Lake Michigan.

Kewaunee hires new principal, switches schedule

A new face in the principal’s office will not be the only change for students when they return to Kewaunee High School in the fall. After being on a trimester schedule since 2011, students will return to a more traditional semester schedule this fall. Superintendent Karen Treml says a lot of research went into the decision to switch back from a trimester schedule, which some experts say is better because of the shorter terms and less core classes taking place at once.

The schedule change comes at the same time Michael Bennett takes over as Kewaunee principal for Mark Dax, who resigned his post in March. Treml says it will be a bit of homecoming for Bennett, who comes from Texas but has northeast Wisconsin roots.

Northern Sky Theater kicks off summer season Wednesday

The story of a town in the Fox Valley seceding from Wisconsin and two old favorites highlight the summer season of Northern Sky Theater beginning on Wednesday. “Dairy Heirs” makes a triumphant return to the Peninsula State Park amphitheater after last year’s successful run while “Windjammers” sets sail for the first time since 2013. New this year is “We Like It Where?,” the true story of Winneconne residents voicing their displeasure with being left off the state map with the publicity stunt of secession in the 1960s. Written by Corrie and Stephen Kovacs, artistic director Jeff Herbst says the musical is one of the first Northern Sky Theater has done featuring real-life characters.

The summer season features “We Like It Where?” on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, “Windjammers” on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and “Dairy Heirs” on Mondays and Fridays. You can learn more about the shows and get an update on Northern Sky Theater’s creative campus during this Saturday’s Ask the Expert beginning at 7:30 a.m. on 96.7 WBDK.

Ephraim's Fyr Bal returns Saturday

For the 55th year, Ephraim will take to the shores of Eagle Harbor on Saturday to welcome the long days of summer by burning the “winter witch.” The village’s Fyr Bal dates back to a Scandinavian tradition that now includes a fun-filled day of music, crafts, and other activities. Before the occasion is marked by a large bonfire, visitors and residents select their “chieftain,” which often goes to a community member who has made large contributions to the area. Ephraim Tourism Coordinator Lane Methner says selecting a chieftain remains an important practice for the event.

Fyr Bal begins at 7:30 a.m. with a pancake breakfast at Ephraim Village Hall and concludes with fireworks over Eagle Harbor at sunset. You can find a complete schedule of events online with this story.


Picture submitted by Ephraim Tourism Council

Assembly water quality bill looks for support

After throwing its support behind Senate Bill 137 last month, the Kewaunee County Land and Water Conservation Committee will discuss a similar Assembly proposal to help property owners with contaminated wells. Assembly Bill 21 would allow a well owner with an annual family income of $65,000 or less to apply for grants to test and make necessary changes to private wells contaminated with nitrates. Kewaunee County Land and Water Conservation Committee chairperson Chuck Wagner says outside of potential additional political points to be scored, there is not much of a difference between the two measures.

A resolution supporting Senate Bill 137 was nearly unanimously approved by the Kewaunee County Board last month. In addition to discussing Assembly Bill 21, the committee will also have an update about the ongoing Total Maximum Daily Load study and the stalled Brown County digester project when it meets in Luxemburg on Tuesday beginning at 8:15 a.m.

New LGBTQ bills could help lessen discrimination

A Door County LGBTQ community leader believes some proposed bills in Wisconsin aimed at addressing inequality are much needed. The bills include the Marriage and Family Equality Act which would make state statutes gender neutral and recognize more legal parentage for same-sex couples. Another bill would create a transgender equality task force. Founder and Chair of Open Door Pride Cathy Grier says these are much needed in the State of Wisconsin as there is still too much discrimination. Grier added equality for all would make society better as a whole.



June is National Pride Month. Open Door Pride Fest will be on Saturday, June 22nd at Martin Park in Sturgeon Bay.

Cyclists finding more bike racks in the Village of Ephraim

Bike riders taking in the sights around the Village of Ephraim will find it a little easier to park their bikes.  The village's Physical Facilities and Utilities committee approved plans to purchase one additional bike rack for the community.  Public Works Director Russ Salfi says that will give cyclists expanded and more secure parking closer to popular village locations.



The Public Facilities and Utilities Committee plans further discussion for additional back rack locations.

Kinnard family prepared to host Breakfast on the Farm

For the first time in a long while, the people count may finally be close to the herd size this Sunday when Kinnard Farms in Casco hosts the Kewaunee County Breakfast on the Farm. Their parents Alvin and Millie started with just 14 cows, but Lee Kinnard, Rodney Kinnard, and Jackie Stewart have seen their herd grow to over 8,000 in recent years. Thousands are expected to attend the annual rite of Father’s Day and Lee Kinnard is excited to welcome them to the place he calls home.

Along with tours, live music, and other family activities, Kewaunee County Breakfast on the Farm begins with a polka mass at 7 a.m. followed by breakfast service at 8.

Adult summer reading programs begin in Algoma

Summer reading programs are not just for kids in Algoma. The Algoma Public Library is starting two adult summer reading programs on June 10th. Katie Haasch, the Adult Services Librarian at the Algoma Public Library, says it's important for adults, especially parents, to read on their own. Haasch added it's a great way to have some relaxing time over the summer.



One program is called “Read 2 Get 1 Free” where you can read two books and get a book from the Algoma Library Friends Bookstore for free. The other is the “Summer Challenge” where the goal is to read 15 books through August 31st. You will be entered for a chance to win prizes if you are able to do so.

Fire foam legislation proposed

The people of Door and Kewaunee counties may have one less thing to worry about polluting the water supply if a couple of proposed bills are passed in Wisconsin. Democrats and Republicans have each proposed bills targeting fire foam. Polyfluoroalkyl, also known as PFAS, are found in fire foams which can contaminate water supplies. Dean Hoegger, President of the Clean Water Action Council of Northeast Wisconsin, says that contaminated surface water in Marinette County has already entered the Bay of Green Bay.



The bill called the Chemical Level Enforcement and Remediation (CLEAR) Act would require the DNR to establish acceptable levels of PFAS in fire foam. State Senator Dave Hansen is one of the sponsors of the bill. A bill introduced by members of the Republican Party would limit the use of fire foam. PFAS have been linked to a reduction in fertility, increases the risk of high blood pressure in pregnant women, and lowers birth weights. The bill is still in the introduction phase.

Variety of New Trees Coming to Crossroads at Big Creek

A Door County naturalist wants you to know that it’s important to have many different types of trees and plants in your area.  When Crossroads at Big Creek was tasked with planting trees as part of their parking lot expansion project, the group looked to learn from the issues of the past.  Coggin Heeringa ::HAIR-inga:: , director and naturalist at Crossroads, remembers when the Dutch elm disease ravaged the trees in her hometown and there were no trees left.  This is something she hopes to avoid with a new tree planting strategy.



The strategy involves around twenty different tree species.  All the trees chosen are known host-plants for insects like moths and butterflies.  This will increase the number of caterpillars, which in turn will increase the number of songbirds, who rely on the caterpillars for food.

Impact of the Arts on Community Discussion

You can see how local art can positively affect the community in Door County on Thursday.  The Miller Art Museum will be hosting a presentation from Kelli Strickland, the executive and artistic director at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts in Green Bay.  The talk is titled “Building Community and Common Ground through the Arts” and will take place at 6 p.m.  Strickland will discuss how communities like in Door and Kewaunee Counties are benefited by the arts and community involvement.



The goal of this talk is to bolster discussion about developing the arts in Sturgeon Bay and the surrounding area.  The event is free to attend and will be held in the main gallery of the Museum.

Highway 42 to Undergo Construction

Your drive through southern Door County may be slowed due to construction beginning in mid-June. Construction will start on highway 42 on the Door and Kewaunee County line and finish just south of Sturgeon Bay. Governor Evers approved the $3.7 million plan earlier this week. The project contains improvements on asphalt along the highway, storm sewer repairs, beamguard upgrades, and pavement markings. Wisconsin DOT Communications Manager Mark Kantola says that although construction will begin, the highway will stay open.



The project is expected to cause minor delays in traffic and be finished in mid to late August.

75th anniversary of D-Day remembered at the Tug Ludington

The 75th anniversary of D-Day was celebrated at the Tug Ludington in Kewaunee on Saturday. Thursday was the 75th anniversary of Allied Forces landing on the beaches of France in World War II. The Tug Ludington was built back in 1943 back when it was called the Major William F. Browder (LT-4) and was used to carry ammo barges during the invasion. Dennis Shimanek is on the Tug Ludington Committee and he emceed the remembrance. He talked about the tug’s history which was renamed the Tug Ludington when it was bought by the Corps of Engineers in 1947. It was used by the Corps until 1996 when they sold it to the City of Kewaunee where it’s been in the Kewaunee Harbor ever since.


Remington Schleis is a 17-year old who just graduated from Kewaunee High School and he spoke as well. He has a long family history of fighting in wars. He talked about the importance of remembering history.


Major Brandon Sivret of the US Air Force spoke as well about the sacrifices that were made on those beaches and that soldiers still continue to do to this day.



Captain Glenn Brunner who has retired from the US Navy also spoke more specifically of how D-Day went down and how many lives were lost. The ceremony ended with a 21 gun salute. Video of the ceremony can be found below.

Door County Sheriff's Department shooting range keeps lead out of the environment

The Door County Sheriff's Department is doing its part to keep bullets fired by deputies during training from becoming environmental hazards.  Some law enforcement agencies are phasing out lead-based bullets.  While Door County has no plans to switch to lead-free ammunition, Chief Deputy Pat McCarty says the sheriff's department's firing range was designed with environmental protection in mind.



The Vilas County Sheriff's Department is among the Wisconsin law enforcement agencies to begin phasing in non-lead ammunition.  That was prompted in part by studies that found eagles in the region had contracted lead poisoning.   The birds were feeding on deer carcasses containing lead pellets and bullets.  Law enforcement officers will sometimes euthanize deer struck by vehicles.  So Vilas County Deputies will now use only lead-free ammunition in such instances.

A bigger beach in store for Egg Harbor next summer

Visitors to Egg Harbor will find the village beach in good shape for this summer.  They'll have to wait, however, until summer 2020 for a larger beach.   The village had planned to expand the popular beach this year.  Lisa Van Laanen, with the village's Parks and Public Works Committee, says the $500,000 project is on hold in order to accommodate the harbor's bass population.



Work on the beach expansion project had originally been set to start in March with all work to be completed by Memorial Day weekend. Van Laanen says with the addition of new and the beach will remain very user-friendly.

Developers summit will showcase potential housing sites in Sturgeon Bay

Information gathered in recent public hearings on Door County's housing needs will now be used to attract prospective developers.  The Door County Economic Development Corporation will be holding the first of two developers summits in Sturgeon Bay June 14th.  DCEDC Executive Director Jim Schuessler says the private meetings will help showcase potential sites available in Sturgeon Bay.



Schuessler says interested developers will see that Sturgeon Bay holds potential for some attractive demographics.



Schuessler says a second developers summit will also be held in an as-yet-undetermined Door County community.

Keeping a budget key to financial independence

A Sturgeon Bay money counselor says keeping a budget is key in gaining financial independence from your parents. Recent studies have shown that only 37% of millennials are totally financially independent from their parents. Leslie Boden, Director of Money Management Counselors in Sturgeon Bay, says living within your means is a must when it comes to financial independence. Boden added creating a budget for yourself is essential in doing that.



Money Management Counselors is located on 12th Ave in Sturgeon Bay.

Enterprise zone will help area National Guard/Reserve spouses

The spouses of  Wisconsin National Guard and Reserve members from Door and Kewaunee counties will benefit from a first-of-its-kind program.   The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has designated Wisconsin as a Military Spouse Economic Empowerment Zone focused on guard and reserve families.  Rebecca Deschane, Challenge Initiatives Director for the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, says the enterprise zone will help spouses partner their skills with resources that can help manage a household while guard or reserve members are on active duty.



Deschane says the program will also help potential employers benefit from an overlooked resource.



The Military Spouse Economic Empowerment Zone initiative is part of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Hiring Our Heroes program for veterans.

Time for Some Kayak Fishing

It’s been a cool spring, but, a warm-up is coming and with it warmer water temperatures.  This should turn on the smallmouth bass fishing, which, has been slow so far this year.


One great thing about Door County is that even if the smallies have lockjaw, the beauty makes it a pleasure to be on the waters of Green Bay and Lake Michigan.  I’ve been out over the past week in both my Jackson Kayak Kraken 13.5 as well as my boat.  The fishing has been decent, but, not what it usually is.


As I’ve mentioned in the past, I’ve had success with the Ned Rig, a finesse presentation with a light 1/15th or 1/10th ounce jig with the Z-Man Finesse TRD.  All the colors can work, but, the best is Green Pumpkin Goby.  For the first time this spring I’ve also used the Keitech Fat Swing Swimbait with success.  I like the 3.3 inch and 3.8 inch and swim it slow and steady on a lighter jig.  Both of these presentations will add to your success.  And, I hope you practice catch and release and try not to catch smallies as they guard beds!


Looking at equipment, I have to revisit your paddle choice and the weight of that paddle.  Many don’t realize how a lighter paddle can make your time on the water more fun.  I use the 30 ounce mark as what you should try for.  And, yes, lighter paddles do cost more, but, there are some very good paddles out there in the 30 ounce range under $200.  Remember, you’ll be using that paddle for years.  In fact, I’d suggest in proportion, spend more on the paddle than kayak.  Check out paddles at one of our Door County outfitters.


With warmer temps and fishing picking up, it’s time to get on the water.  And, as always, if you have any questions, email me at

More People Mean More Calls

As the summer season gets going, more tourists begin to migrate to Door County. According to the Door County Visitor Bureau, there were over two million visitors in the 2018 tourism season. Chief Curt Vandertie of the Brussels-Union-Gardner Fire Department says that more emergency fire and medical calls will happen because of the population increase.



Vandertie explained that day time help is difficult to find throughout the year. Because of the low volunteer level during the day, Vandertie says that the BUG Fire Department relies on help from the surrounding departments during the days when calls occur. 


Man found dead in Luxemburg tractor accident

A 54-year old Green Bay man was found dead in a tractor on fire in Luxemburg early Saturday morning. Just before 1 AM the Kewaunee County Sheriff Department received a call of a tractor on fire with someone possibly inside. They found the tractor had rolled into some power lines on Tonet Rd north of County Road K.


Sheriff deputies, Luxemburg Fire & Rescue, Red River First Responders and Wisconsin Public Service responded. Once the fire was extinguished, the tractor was moved to a safer place where the jaws of life were used. The tractor operator had died by the time they got to him.


The accident is being investigated and the man's name is not being released pending notification of his family.

Sevatopol Earns Best Report Card in Wisconsin

Students at Sevastopol Middle School hit the books hard this school year and it paid off. For their efforts, the students earned the highest report card in the state of Wisconsin. According to the state, Sevastopol middle school significantly exceeded expectations in all of the major categories. Superintendent Kyle Luedtke is very proud of the accomplishments by the students.




Sevastopol Middle School has increased its state report card grade each of the last 4 years.

Big Change Coming for Sturgeon Bay Breakfast Rotary Club

Greg Dietz’s time as president of the Sturgeon Bay Breakfast Rotary Club is quickly coming to an end.  In three weeks, he will step down after his second term where he filled in for a fellow Rotarian who had to deal with a family emergency.  Dietz says he has enjoyed his time in the club, no matter how early the meetings may be.



In the last few weeks, the club has hosted the Rotary’s Fine Arts Awards, as well as planning to continue their dictionary program.  With those events taken care of, Dietz is looking to enjoy the end of this term.

Kewaunee lighthouse Fresnel lens now in KCHS

The historic Fresnel lenses in the Kewaunee Pierhead Lighthouses guided people on Lake Michigan for over 100 years and you can now see them up close. One of the lenses has been moved to the Kewaunee County Historical Society (KCHS). Another was transferred to the North Point Lighthouse Museum in Milwaukee. They were first put up in 1890. The KCHS will host a presentation on Saturday at 1 PM to celebrate the addition to the museum on Ellis Street in Kewaunee. KCHS Treasurer Arletta Bertrand says everyone should come see a big part of the history of Kewaunee.



The lenses are valued between $150,000 and $300,000 according to the KCHS.  After the presentation, there will be an ice cream social. 

Sister Bay welcomes expanded Piggly Wiggly

Seven months of patience reached its exciting conclusion Friday morning as the ribbon was cut for the grand reopening of the Piggly Wiggly grocery store in Sister Bay. The store was only closed for four days during the months-long project, which nearly doubled the size of the store and made major improvements to its deli, bakery, and produce departments. Planning for the renovations started eight years ago and co-owner Daniel Nesbitt is happy the wait is over.

Sister Bay Village President Dave Lienau had the honor of cutting the ribbon to conclude the roughly 45-minute ceremony. He says there is more good news than just the wider aisles and bigger selection.

After opening its doors nearly 40 years, Nesbitt says its newest features include a soup and salad bar and outdoor seating.




Volunteer firefighters could get boost from budget

Volunteer firefighters in Door and Kewaunee Counties could be seeing a little extra money come their way if a bill is approved by the Wisconsin Legislature. The recently proposed BRAVE Act would give volunteer firefighters and emergency medical services personnel an annual $300 tax credit in their first five years, a number that would double in each subsequent year after that. The hope is the tax credit would help recruitment efforts for rural, volunteer departments that have seen the average age climb to nearly 60 years old according to the U.S. Fire Administration. Sister Bay/Liberty Grove Fire Chief  Chris Hecht says anything that can be done to help departments recruit more members is welcomed.

The bipartisan bill could have a tremendous impact statewide since more than 90 percent of Wisconsin’s departments are volunteer-driven according to the U.S. Fire Administration.

Farmers look to take advantage of dry weather

Do not be surprised if you are sharing the road with tractors and other implements of husbandry this weekend in Door and Kewaunee Counties. Farmers are finally finding their fields dry enough to prepare the land to harvest some crops while planting others. It comes on the heels of what has been one of the wettest springs on record. It has made life difficult for agronomists like Rio Creek Feed Mill’s Adam Barta, who has had to walk farmers through the spring planting process with some fields still under water until recently. Barta says there are consequences if corn and some forage crops do not get into the ground soon.

With crop insurance deadlines looming, Barta says farmers would rather get some plants in the ground then take the money and run.

Cardboard Regatta sets sail for DCMM

Students from Gibraltar and Sturgeon Bay set sail in YMCA pools earlier this week thanks to a new educational initiative from the Door County Maritime Museum. With nothing but tape and a few pieces of cardboard, students used educational materials from the Door County Maritime Museum to make boats with the ability to use them as actual watercrafts. Community Engagement Coordinator Carrie Dorski says it is all part of the educational outreach initiative it launched earlier this year.

Dorski hopes the winners are inspired to a similar challenge during the museum’s Classic and Wooden Boat Festival in the future. The Door County Maritime Museum plans on expanding the program to all Door County schools next year.



Final decision on tugs not made yet

Sturgeon Bay Ad Hoc Waterfront Planning Committee co-chairperson Laurel Hauser says they are considering all options when it comes to the location of the tugs. The committee held public input sessions back in January where residents stated they love the tugs where they are currently, but would also like a view of the water as well. Hauser says the committee is hopeful it will reach a compromise that would make people on both sides of the discussion happy.

According to Hauser, there has been some talk about the city and Selvick Towing officials meeting in the future to discuss what could be done to benefit both parties. The Ad Hoc Waterfront Planning Committee will host its next meeting on Monday with hopes of finalizing its report to present to the Sturgeon Bay Common Council at its next session on June 18th.

Ride-sharing expansion effort in Northern Door showing promise

The ranks of ride-sharing drivers for Northern Door County is showing signs of growth.  That follows a pair of free classes recently held to answer questions from those interested in joining the Uber or Lyft ride sharing programs.  Louise Howson, with the Sister Bay Advancement Association, says that effort appears to be paying off. 

Howson says future Uber/Lyft drivers classes will be held on a date still to be determined.

Luxemburg Chamber of Commerce golf outing drives community events

The greater Luxemburg community came together this past Monday to enjoy some fellowship and golf while raising funds for Luxemburg Area Chamber of Commerce programs.  Over 17 teams participated in the 15th annual golf outing at the new Northbrook Golf & Grill.  Organizer Mike Stone says the Chamber of Commerce is always working to showcase the best of what Kewaunee County and Luxemburg has to offer with events throughout the year.



Music in the Park is held at Fireman’s Park every Thursday evening, weather permitting.  The Luxemburg Area Chamber of Commerce is also currently organizing the Kewaunee County Fair Parade which will be held on Sunday, July 14.


Door County beekeepers see honey production fall in 2018

Door County beekeepers say honey production was off in 2018 and that followed the trend statewide.  The National Agricultural Statistics Service found Wisconsin produced 2.3 million pounds of honey in 2018.  That's off 23-percent from 2017.  Max Martin, with the Door County Beekeepers Club, says that's not surprising in light of last year's weather conditions.



Martin says beekeepers are also working constantly to treat their hives for mites that have killed off a large number of honey bees.

Barta posthumously honored at dairy month kickoff breakfast

On a day when many were anxious to take advantage of the weather to get out to their fields, farmers in Kewaunee County did take time Thursday morning to honor the life of one of their own. The Kewaunee County Dairy Promotion Committee honored the late Andy Barta with the volunteer recognition award at its Dairy Month Kickoff Breakfast held at the Rendezvous of Luxemburg. Ebert Enterprises owner Randy Ebert and Kewaunee County UW-Extension Agriculture Agent Aerica Bjurstrom reminisced about Barta not just for his role as the general manager at the Rio Creek Feed Mill, but as an avid volunteer of all things agriculture and a loving father and husband. His wife Alison accepted the award on his behalf, telling those in attendance that Barta appreciated the relationships he was able to form in the place he called home before passing away from cancer last year.

It was the second straight year the Kewaunee County Dairy Promotion Committee gave the volunteer recognition award posthumously, honoring the late John Pagel last year. The annual breakfast serves as a kickoff to a special week for the committee, culminating with the Kewaunee County Breakfast on the Farm at Kinnard Farms in Casco on Father’s Day.



Council member takes shots at colleagues, city attorney and administrator

David Hayes, a member of the Sturgeon Bay city council, has called out colleagues, city attorney James Kalny and administrator Josh VanLieshout in an email sent to
Hayes claims council members who voted to table an amendment to a development agreement between the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society Foundation and the city at Tuesday’s council meeting violated their oath to uphold the state constitution.  He called a vote to challenge a Department of Natural Resources ruling that determined where west side development can occur is “laughable.” 
Hayes also claims council members who voted in favor of tabling the amendment to the development agreement with “violating good faith negotiations and blatantly suppressing information.”
In his e-mail, Hayes called city attorney James Kalny “negligent” and that he was probably following orders from city administrator Josh VanLieshout by “removing a document from city hall.”
The document Hayes mentioned was information about changes the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society requested in order to move the Teweles and Brandeis granary back near its original location on the west side waterfront.
The Sturgeon Bay city council voted Tuesday to table the changes requested to the development agreement until questions can be answered and council members can more carefully consider information provided by the SBHSF and city staff.
The entire e-mail sent by council member Hayes is posted with this story at Kalny and VanLieshout declined to comment.
From David Hayes:

I would also add to the breach of contract from SBHSF against the City ignoring "good faith" negotiations by tabling the item instead of allowing Kalny to bring the information from his car to the chambers during what could have been the 5 minute recess. Kalny was negligent but probably following orders from JV - perhaps that was why they were late! Removing the document from city hall! 


This is the third record made by the new council - shortest closed session, fastest violation of their oath to uphold the state constitution, voting to challenge it in a laughable memo/letter, and thirdly violating good faith negotiations by blatantly suppressing information that would have supported an informed discussion/decision.

Lawmakers differing on reaching a budget agreement to avoid financial crisis

Congress must find a budget agreement by October to avoid cuts in programs that Door and Kewaunee county residents depend on.  Wisconsin lawmakers disagree on how the budget efforts are going. Democratic U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin believes Congress will get to work on the budget sooner rather than later and finish the job on time.



Republican 8th District U.S. Representative Mike Gallagher, who represents Door and Kewaunee counties, is not as optimistic based on what he's seen.  Gallagher says failure to reach a new spending plan and raise the debt ceiling could be catastrophic.


Since the first World War, Congress has tried to limit federal borrowing and has routinely raised the borrowing limit as the US government debt has grown.

Tariffs on China and Mexico impact local farms

Farmers in Door and Kewaunee Counties would see some setbacks with tariffs on China and Mexico, which are two major buyers of dairy products and soybeans.  The U.S. began collecting 25-percent tariffs on Chinese products last week. Tariffs of five-percent are expected to be levied later this month against Mexico and would increase to 25-percent by October.   Aerica Bjurstrom, Agriculture Agent with the U-W Extension office in Kewaunee County, says the impact on area farmers comes just as they were making some gains.



Bjurstrom also says there are marketing systems in place to help dairy and soybean farmers find other buyers for their products.

Libraries trying to help prevent summer slide

As students leave the textbooks behind at the end of the school year, area librarians are working to keep them engaged in reading this summer.  The decline in reading ability and other academic skills can occur over the summer months when school is not in session.  Beth Lokken, the youth services librarian at the Door County Library in Sturgeon Bay, says the “summer slide” can cause a substantial setback for students in many areas of education.  



The Door County Library began the Summer Reads program this week at each of their eight locations.  You can find more information on programs offered with this story online.   

New tribute wall funds Peninsula Park improvements

A new tribute wall at the Nicolet Beach shelter at Peninsula State Park in Fish Creek thanks those who are making picnics and cookouts nicer.  The Friends of Peninsula State Park wanted to help those who donated between $1,000-$2,500 honor family and friends.  That raised $33,500 which was matched dollar-for-dollar by a Department of Natural Resources grant.  Steve Strucely, business manager for the friends group, says those funds provided some much-needed improvements in the park.



Strucely hopes the Nicolet Beach Tribute Wall will inspire donors to help fund future projects, such as a new nature center that's currently in the planning stages.

75th Anniversary of D-Day impacts local veterans

With the 75th Anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy being commemorated around the world on Thursday, a local veteran and officer shares the significance of the event.  Door County Veterans Officer Scott McFarlane says the anniversary of D-Day is even more significant this year.



 McFarlane says he had the honor to visit Normandy years ago.



President Trump is attending services at the U.S. Cemetery in Normandy Thursday commemorating the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day invasion.      

Tugs no longer wanted on Sturgeon Bay westside Waterfront?

Long as iconic as Sturgeon Bay’s Michigan Street bridge and the Teweles and Brandeis grain elevator, tug boats on the westside waterfront may be in danger of getting booted.

According to city resident Scott Moore, the Sturgeon Bay Ad Hoc Waterfront Planning Committee would like to see the Selvick Marine Towing tug boats moved to a different location.  Moore spoke during the public comment section of Tuesday’s common council meeting.  

He cited problems that would be created for the tug boats.

The public, Moore said, wants the tug boats to stay on the westside waterfront but the ad hoc committee does not.  Moore raised concerns about comments made by committee members at a recent meeting.  The committee is chaired by Laurel Hauser and Dave Schanock.

Selvick Towing, one of the oldest tug boat services on the Great Lakes, leases docking space from the City of Sturgeon Bay.

Improving from within important for Luxemburg growth

Seeing construction crews and cranes continues to be good news for Luxemburg Village President Ken Tebon. The expansions going on at NEW Plastics and D&S Machine Service will employ dozens of more people, while the referendum projects going on at Luxemburg-Casco School District will make the area a more attractive place to work and live for families. Combine that with the construction of a new tower that will improve Internet access in Luxemburg, Tebon says all the excitement going on in the community could spur even more growth.

Tebon also cited the new local investor group at Northbrook Country Club and the improvements they have made as another positive for the community.

Habitat sees bigger role in addressing affordable housing

Nothing in last week’s film showings on Door County’s affordable housing issues surprised Habitat for Humanity Executive Director David Van Dyke, but it still left him inspired to do more. “A Place of Their Own” shared the stories of eight Door County residents struggling to work and live in an area that is short over 400 affordable housing units, a number that is expected to push close to 600 in about five years. One idea to address it is the creation of a housing land trust that would buy land reserved for local workforce households looking to build a home. That is where Van Dyke

Van Dyke says he wishes Door County Habitat for Humanity could build more homes every year, but finding enough partner families, financial resources, and volunteers continue to be hurdles. Sponsored by the Interfaith Prosperity Coalition, you can find a schedule of upcoming showings of “A Place of Their Own” at locations across the county online with this story.



Well contamination study forum set

After presenting to the Midwest Manure Summit and the Kewaunee County Land and Water Committee earlier this year, United States Department of Agriculture microbiologist Dr. Mark Borchardt will present his well contamination findings straight to local residents. A follow-up to his report in 2017, Borchardt’s study showed the relationship between the distance of wells to manure pits and septic system drain fields and how that could possibly infect wells with dangerous pathogens. After Borchardt presented his findings to the Kewaunee County Land and Water Committee two months ago, chairperson Chuck Wagner said the information was not a big surprise.

The Kewaunee County presentation will be held June 20th at the Kewaunee County Fairground Expo Hall at 6 p.m., one day after Borchardt gives a similar talk in Egg Harbor at the Kress Pavilion.


Lighthouse festival spots filling up

This weekend’s Door County Spring Lighthouse Festival still has some limited spots available, including some tours that will allow you to tour the area like you have never been able to before. For the first time, the annual event organized by the Door County Maritime Museum is featuring tours where people explore lighthouses by kayak or raft. While many of the most popular tours were included in this year’s festival, Door County Maritime Museum Community Engagement Manager Carrie Dorski says they wanted to offer some more unique offerings.

You can still contact the Door County Maritime Museum if you’d like to participate in one of the land or water-based tours, including the Rock Island cruise on Saturday. You can find a link explaining the different tours available online with this story.



Tariffs proposed for Mexican products could impact Hispanic stores

Mexico would have an impact on businesses that cater to Spanish-speaking residents in Door and Kewaunee counties.  The  Trump Administration proposal would add a five-percent tariff to Mexican-made products this month.  That would go up an additional five-percent each of the following months until the total tariff reached 25-percent.  Imelda Delcambre, of the Hispanic Resource Center of Door and Kewaunee Counties, believes that will raise prices for goods sold in Hispanic-owned businesses.



The Trump Administration says tariffs are being proposed to try and get the Mexican government to make more of an effort to stop the flow of migrants to the U.S.-Mexico border.

Town of Forestville hopes to have road damage resolved

The Town of Forestville Board supervisors will be meeting with contractors concerning the damage suffered to a couple of town roads earlier this spring.   Contractor ATC and subcontractor MJ Electric who were putting in power lines caused the buckling off pavement due to their heavy equipment.  Town Chair Roy Englebert is optimistic that a resolution will be accomplished at a meeting on Tuesday.


Englebert says Door County Highway Patrol Supervisor Thad Ash will be on site to give an estimate of the repair cost during the meeting.  The Forestville Town Board will meet at 1 pm at the Town Hall in Maplewood, before visiting the damaged roads.  


Council vote delays granary return trip to Sturgeon Bay west side waterfront

The fate of the controversial Sturgeon Bay Teweles and Brandeis grain elevator was put on hold again Tuesday night by the Sturgeon Bay city council which voted to postpone a decision that would allow a move back near its original location until June 18th.

Council members discussed an amendment to a development agreement that would have allowed the granary to return to the west-side waterfront. Because it would not be to the exact location specified in the development agreement between the city and the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society, council action is required to approve the change.

The vote was five to two with council members Kelly Avenson and David Hayes opposed to the delay. The change was requested by the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society. Council member Kirsten Reeths moved to table the amendment.

Council member Kelly Avenson said approving the amendment to the development agreement would benefit both the city and the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society.

According to city administrator Josh VanLieshout, the owner of the property where the granary is located now would like it moved. The historical society, he said, has expressed a sense of urgency to obtain the approval of the development agreement amendment.

The fate of the granary may now be in the hands of Peter Moede, the developer of Centerpointe Marina, where the granary is now temporarily located. He has cooperated with the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society in efforts to preserve the grain elevator but he could order its removal from his property. That action could result in demolition if efforts to amend the development agreement are not granted.

Door County's past opens again at Crossroads at Big Creek

The Heritage Village at Big Creek in Sturgeon Bay officially opened for the season Tuesday giving visitors and locals alike the opportunity to get a glimpse at what communities looked like for early settlers to Door County.  Bailey Koepsel, executive director of the Door County Historical Society, shares the type of homesteads and buildings that make up the Heritage Village besides a school, church and blacksmith barn. 



Koepsel says there are no plans to expand the village this summer, but the Vignes School will be fully restored and become handicap accessible.  Heritage Village at Big Creek is open 10 am until 3 pm.  Tuesdays through Saturdays.  


(photo courtesy of DCHS)


West side Granary site preparations start

Bulldozers and backhoes started moving dirt Tuesday where the Teweles & Brandeis Granary will be relocated later this month.  The Sturgeon Bay Historical Society recently received permission from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to move the building from the current east side location back to the west side where it originally was situated.  According to Sturgeon Bay Historical Society social media posts, additional paperwork is required and the plan is to tentatively move the granary the week of June 24.  You can see a video of the preparation work being done to the property below.  






Kewaunee County residents can participate in Door County Fair

The Door County Fair is opening up its exhibit space to Kewaunee County residents this year for its open class division. It is the latest change to exhibiting projects at the fair, which in recent years have included online registration and allowing in school projects. Door County UW-Extension 4-H Educator Dawn Vandevoort says many county fairs across the state do not have boundary limits and believes it was a good time to open it up to its immediate neighbor to the south for open class entries.

Junior fair entries need to be registered online at by July 1st, while open class projects have until July 15th to sign up. The Door County Fair will take place this year from July 31st to August 4th at John Miles County Park in Sturgeon Bay.

New Ephraim rescue boat makes maiden voyage

Over 300 hours of hard work over the winter months paid off over the weekend when the Ephraim Fire Department launched its new rescue boat. Purchased back in August, the Ephraim Fire Department upgraded the used vessels’ electronics to better fit the needs of its rescue operations when it leaves its home dock in Eagle Harbor. Not only will it be better for the people being rescued, Ephraim Fire Chief Justin MacDonald says it will be an improvement for the rescuers too.

The rescue boat plays a crucial role in lifesaving operations on Door County’s western coastline as it stays docked the entire season and can get some places quicker than other departments and agencies like the Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Coast Guard.


Picture courtesy of Ephraim Fire Department

Stearns to take over Kewaunee County Veterans Office

Kewaunee County veterans will have a new face to meet with later this month. Robert Stearns is already a couple of weeks into his stint as the Kewaunee County Veterans Service Officer as Jane Babcock heads towards retirement on June 14th. Stearns served with the U.S. Army Military Police for close to 10 years before working in the private sector. Babcock feels Stearns will be a good fit for the county.

Stearns is the third CVSO to fill the position for Kewaunee County in the last five years, following in the footsteps of Babcock and current Brown County Director of Veterans Services Joe Aulik.

Sheriff wants more study on CBD before changing impairment laws

Kewaunee County Sheriff Matt Joski recommends lawmakers study further the potential impacts from hemp-based products before changing laws on impairment.  Lawmakers are considering a bill that would prevent drivers who have consumed a product made with trace amounts of THC, such as the marijuana and hemp derivative Cannabidiol or CBD, from being charged with operating while intoxicated.  Sheriff Joski would like the full impacts of CBD consumption to be known to ensure public safety.



CBD made from hemp plants is non-addictive and is being sold over the counter in Wisconsin for medicinal uses.

Outdoor activities call for awareness of ticks and mosquitos

Local public health officials are getting out the word on the uptick in the tick-borne illnesses caused by infection.  With the chances of being bitten by a tick in the area rising during the summer months, a proactive approach is being advised.  Door County Public Health Registered Sanitarian and Educator Chelsea Smies says repellents and appropriate clothing are important when heading outdoors. 



Smies advises that if you find a tick on your body, remove it immediately without causing major agitation.  She suggests using tweezers to grab the head of the tick and slowly pull it straight out without twisting.  Symptoms of Lyme Disease include fever, joint pain, aches, fatigue and a rash with a bulls-eye appearance.  You can find more information on tick and mosquito prevention with at the CDC website tips below. 


Preventing tick bites

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Series of three images showing a man treating his clothing with permethrin

Tick exposure can occur year-round, but ticks are most active during warmer months (April-September). Know which ticks are most common in your area.

Before You Go Outdoors

  • Know where to expect ticks. Ticks live in grassy, brushy, or wooded areas, or even on animals. Spending time outside walking your dog, camping, gardening, or hunting could bring you in close contact with ticks. Many people get ticks in their own yard or neighborhood.
  • Treat clothing and gear with products containing 0.5% permethrin. Permethrin can be used to treat boots, clothing and camping gear and remain protective through several washings. Alternatively, you can buy permethrin-treated clothing and gear.
  • Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellentsExternal containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), or 2-undecanone. EPA’s helpful search toolExternal can help you find the product that best suits your needs. Always follow product instructions.
    • Do not use insect repellent on babies younger than 2 months old.
    • Do not use products containing OLE or PMD on children under 3 years old.
  • Avoid Contact with Ticks
    • Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass and leaf litter.
    • Walk in the center of trails.

After You Come Indoors

Check your clothing for ticks. Ticks may be carried into the house on clothing. Any ticks that are found should be removed. Tumble dry clothes in a dryer on high heat for 10 minutes to kill ticks on dry clothing after you come indoors. If the clothes are damp, additional time may be needed. If the clothes require washing first, hot water is recommended. Cold and medium temperature water will not kill ticks.

Examine gear and pets. Ticks can ride into the home on clothing and pets, then attach to a person later, so carefully examine pets, coats, and daypacks.

Shower soon after being outdoors. Showering within two hours of coming indoors has been shown to reduce your risk of getting Lyme disease and may be effective in reducing the risk of other tickborne diseases. Showering may help wash off unattached ticks and it is a good opportunity to do a tick check.

Check your body for ticks after being outdoors. Conduct a full body check upon return from potentially tick-infested areas, including your own backyard. Use a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all parts of your body. Check these parts of your body and your child’s body for ticks:

  • Under the arms
  • In and around the ears
  • Inside belly button
  • Back of the knees
  • In and around the hair
  • Between the legs
  • Around the waist

Clipart image of a woman illustrating where on the body to look for ticks: in and around the hair, in and around ears, under the arms, inside belly button, between the legs, back of the knees


Weekly fertilizing important to health of plants

With outdoor plants now safe from deadly overnight hard frost, area greenhouse owners are stressing the importance of fertilizing and watering newly planted shrubs and vegetation.  Todd Maas of Maas Floral and Greenhouse in Sturgeon Bay says checking the weight of a hanging basket or container is a good indication if added water is needed for the plant.



Maas adds that they recommend weekly fertilizing to keep plants green and healthy.



You will lose a lot of blooms from your plants if you do not fertilize properly, according to Maas.  You can listen to the entire interview on tips for keeping your plants healthy this summer with this story online.  


Door County Board informs public on comment procedures

Door County Administrator Ken Pabich hopes you feel more comfortable participating in local government decisions. The Door County Board will encourage members of the public to speak during the comment period with a few reminders. Those reminders include the information they need to provide before speaking, encouraging commenter s with closely aligned thoughts to designate a spokesperson, and that members will not engage in dialogue with them during the public comment portion of the meeting. Pabich says this is being done for a couple of reasons.

The next regular county board meeting is June 25th in Sturgeon Bay.

Sturgeon Bay Police Cadets impress at state competition

A local police cadet program turned in an impressive showing at the Milwaukee Police Academy this past weekend.   The Sturgeon Bay Police Cadet unit claimed a second and third place at the Milwaukee Police Department Cadet/Explorer competition.  Twenty law enforcement agencies competed at the state competition that covered five different situations law enforcement may encounter.  Sturgeon Bay Officer and Advisor Brandon Shew says the team really excelled at the Shots Fired/Crime Scene Investigation and the Shoot or Don’t Shoot scenarios.



The Sturgeon Bay Police Cadets program is open to 14 to 20-year-olds interested in a law enforcement career. 



Do you or somebody you know have an interest in a law enforcement career? For more information on the Sturgeon Bay PD Cadet program, you can visit the Sturgeon Bay Police Cadets Facebook Page or contact the Advisor:

Officer Brandon Shew
(920) 746-2450




Photo courtesy of Sturgeon Bay Police Cadets Unit   -- (L-R) Instructor Shew, Tristan Bergene, Tristan Beauchamp (Captain),  Brandon Bouche and Sierra Becker.  

Senator Johnson sympathetic to farmers and manufacturers' straits

Spending a significant amount of time on a dairy farm growing up, a trade deal with China that benefits local farmers cannot come soon enough for U.S. Senator Ron Johnson. Chinese officials are threatening to source their agricultural needs like soybeans elsewhere if U.S. imposed tariffs are not lifted, potentially closing the market for good. Some dairy groups are also worried Mexico could retaliate against its industry if the U.S. imposes new duties on imports beginning June 10th. Senator Johnson says farmers and manufacturers, which are also feeling the crunch from the tariffs, are in support of what President Donald Trump and his administration are trying to accomplish with the tariffs. He is keeping his fingers crossed that something can be worked out soon.

The Trump Administration announced last month that American farmers would receive $16 billion in aid to help mitigate the damage being done by China’s retaliatory tariffs.

Future of Dyckesville Lions exist in youth organization

While some service club organizations are struggling to find new members, the Dyckesville Lions are nurturing their future in a new club. The organization sponsors a Leo Club at Luxemburg-Casco High School, one of over 7,000 worldwide but the only one in Door and Kewaunee Counties. Much like their older counterparts, Leos take on service projects like blood drives, penny wars, and military care packages to better serve the community. Dyckesville Lions Club President Jay Mastalir says it is a great program for youth to be a part of if they can.

Thanks to the Leos and their other projects in the community, Mastalir is proud to say the Dyckesville Lions Club is growing. 



Washington Island graduation a community celebration

While family and friends filled gymnasiums over the weekend for commencement ceremonies in Door and Kewaunee counties, the whole community is expected to show up for the Washington Island School graduation. Part of the reason is because of the size of the graduating classes of the school, which sits at three this year. A community dinner, a presentation of quilts to the graduates, and a celebratory dance are just as part of the commencement day as the diploma itself. Michelle Kanipes will see her first graduation ceremony as the school’s principal and is excited to see the journey the senior class will take.

Molly McGrane, Tiffany Wacaser, and Michael Cornell will receive their diplomas on June 7th at 6 p.m. at Washington Island School.




Picture from Washington Island School District website

West side waterfront issues highlight council meeting

Two topics with west waterfront ties will be discussed in closed session during the Sturgeon Bay Common Council meeting on Tuesday. The Sturgeon Bay Common Council will discuss filing an amicus brief in the case between the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and a group of Sturgeon Bay citizens appealing the agency’s ordinary high water mark ruling in January. The city of Sturgeon Bay is not a litigant in the case, but filing the brief would allow them to weigh in with additional information or arguments in the matter. An amendment in the development agreement between the city and the Sturgeon Bay Historical Society will also be discussed in closed session. The Sturgeon Bay Historical Society recently announced it would be moving the Teweles and Brandeis grain elevator to its old location on June 20th. The Sturgeon Bay Common Council will meet on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Baldwin says Mueller's statements have Congress pondering next steps

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin says special counsel Robert Mueller's statements on the Russia investigation could leave Congress to decide whether further legal actions are needed.   Mueller says his panel's findings could not exonerate President Trump from allegations of criminal activity.  During a visit to Northeast Wisconsin, Senator Baldwin believes that now shifts the burden for further legal action to Congress.



Mueller also said his panel concluded it could not file charges against a sitting president.

Victims of the Great Peshtigo Fire commemorated

A plaque with the names of victims that died in the Great Peshtigo Fire of 1871 was dedicated at Tornado Memorial Park in Brussels on Sunday afternoon. The exact total is either 76 or 77 people that died in what was called Williamsonville back then. It is the area between New Franken to just south of Sturgeon Bay. Barb Chisholm from the Belgian Historical Village has done a lot of research into the fire she says it probably started at the bottom of the Bay of Green Bay and worked its way north on both sides of the bay. It is believed that somewhere between 1200 and 2000 total people died in the fire.


Paul Graf, President of the Friends of the Door County Park System, emceed the event. He read a statement from people who were instrumental in getting the plaque installed at Tornado Park. Chisholm spoke as well and talked about why it’s important to remember the victims as nobody on the peninsula side of the bay has an official grave and tombstone.



A prayer of dedication was read by Father Edward Looney. Pictures and a video of the ceremony can be found below.

Crossroads focus on sturgeon in Lake Michigan

A fish biologist coming to Sturgeon Bay says Lake Michigan will get healthier when the sturgeon population rises. The Fish Tales Lecture series at Crossroads at Big Creek continues on Wednesday with a focus on lake sturgeon. According to Rob Elliott, Fish Biologist with the US Fish and Wildlife Services, the sturgeon population dwindled to almost nothing in the late 1800s due to overfishing, pollution and dams. From then until the 1980s sturgeon populations remained stagnant. They've slowly grown since thanks to new legislation protecting them. Elliott, who will be giving the lecture on Wednesday, says sturgeon is an important species for Lake Michigan.



Elliott's lecture on Wednesday will focus on the ongoing efforts to help grow the sturgeon population. Because of their long life span, it's a long term effort to help the sturgeon rebound. Elliott says the lecture is for all ages and hopes to share the historic importance of the fish with the community.

Having downtime is important over the summer

A Kewaunee County health coach says it’s good for your physical and mental health to have some downtime this summer. Jody Anderson, a registered nurse and health coach for Bellin Health, says many people overload their schedules in the summer and that can sometimes lead to not taking the proper self-care. Anderson suggests taking a relaxing vacation or even just a staycation and slow things down.



Anderson’s other summer health tips include wearing sunscreen and staying hydrated.

National publication ranks Luxemburg-Casco High School among the nation's best

A prominent news magazine calls Luxemburg-Casco High School among the best high schools in the entire nation.  U.S. News and World Report ranked the school among the top 20-percent in the U.S.A and the top 20-percent among Wisconsin high schools.  Superintendent Glenn Schlender credits that to Director of Learning Services Mike Snowberry who has shown a knack for putting the right teachers in the right places.



Schlender says Luxemburg-Casco is also committed to helping students looking at technical schools or direct employment upon graduation.

YMCA aquatic center closing for eight days for safety upgrades

A popular swimming spot in Door County will go dry for eight-days for some repairs and upgrades.   The Door County YMCA Aquatic Center in Sturgeon Bay will be closed from June 8th through June 16th and the pool will be drained. Door County YMCA CEO Tom Beerntsen says in addition to routine repairs work crews will be doing some mandatory safety work.



Annual maintenance work will also include routine cleaning and replacement of broken tiles. 

150th anniversary of Range Lights (Updated with pictures from the event)

You have an opportunity to celebrate a pair of historic lighthouses that have helped sailors navigate Lake Michigan for 150 years at The Ridges Sanctuary in Baileys Harbor. The Range Lights were built in 1869 to keep ships off the treacherous reefs and shallows at the entrance to Baileys Harbor according to the Ridges Sanctuary website. The 150th anniversary of the Range Lights will be celebrated Friday at the Ridges Sanctuary from 3 to 6 PM. The lighthouses continued to be used from 1869 until the 1960s. Drew Richmond, Development and Marketing Director at the Ridges, says they’ve recently gained a new life thanks to volunteers.



The Ridges are continuing to raise funds to help restore the lights to their 1920s appearance. You can visit the lights for a guided tour starting on Monday at the Cook-Albert Fuller Visitor Center between 11 AM and 2 PM.

Pictures courtesy of Tina Gohr


Get help keeping up with passwords

If you’ve ever had trouble remembering one of the many passwords you have to keep up with a Door County IT professional has tips to help. There are online subscription services and apps that can help you keep track of all your passwords. Erin Helgeson of Quantum PC in Sturgeon Bay recommends Dashlane and LastPass. Helgeson added that keeping your passwords written down in a notebook or binder is also a good way to keep track though you have to make sure it doesn’t get lost.



There are specific books that look like address books that are designed for passwords. Quantum PC can also help if you’re having login and password issues. 

Southern Door hosting Camp Invention

A nationally recognized summer camp is coming to Southern Door for the sixth year in a row. It’s called Camp Invention and it promotes science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM) learning. Children in grades K-6 will learn from inventors and how to work in teams. Participants will reverse-engineer a robot which means they’ll take a robot apart and put it back together again. Jessica Meacham, the elementary STEAM teacher at Southern Door, helped organize the camp. She says it’s important for children to learn about STEAM in a creative way because it will help them so much in the future.



Meacham says most attendees come from Door County but children from anywhere can attend. Last year around 90 students came to Camp Invention which was the largest number they’ve had there. The camp lasts for one week from June 10th through June 14th. It costs $230 to attend and there are scholarship opportunities for families who qualify. Contact Meacham at for scholarship questions.

Algoma says good bye to transformational class

The squirrely, misguided students that entered Algoma High School four years ago are gone according to principal Nick Cochart. He says those same students transformed into leaders during their time, playing big roles in the Live Algoma Initiative as well as the school’s Wolf Den program. It took a lot of time for some of the students to discover what their future path may be, something Cochart says is a product of the students being interactive in the community and risk takers.

Led by Valedictorian Abigail Robinson, Algoma’s approximately 60 seniors officially graduate during a Sunday afternoon ceremony.

Baileys Harbor fleet blessed again for the summer

A chilly, drizzly morning didn’t prevent people from coming out to Baileys Harbor for the Blessing of the Fleet Festival on Saturday. Arts and crafts were on the Baileys Harbor Town Hall lawn. There were a few tents set up for art vendors. Paddle races were held as well but the main reason for the event was to make sure boats and crew remain safe over the summer. Commercial and personal boats were blessed by Pastor Sue Gunderson from Immanuel Lutheran Church in Baileys Harbor.



The Blessing of the Fleet Festival continues on Sunday at the Baileys Harbor Town Marina from 9 AM to 5 PM. Video of the blessing can be found below.

Fishing operator calls Asian Carp barrier a good start for Lake Michigan

An Algoma charter fishing operator is pleased that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers finally has a plan to block Asian Carp from getting into Lake Michigan.  The Corps approved a $778-million program that will create additional electric shock barriers and use air bubblers and underwater speakers to drive the invasive species away from a lock and dam near Joliet, Illinois on the Mississippi River.  Lee Haasch, owner of Haasch Guide Service Incorporated in Algoma calls it a long-needed control plan, although he believes it could have been taken a step further.



While a control system is being enhanced, there remain many unanswered questions about possible impacts should Asian Carp make their way into the Great Lakes.



The control plan comes after five years of study.  While Asian Carp have been captured in Lake Calumet south of Chicago, there are still no signs that the fish have made their way into Lake Michigan.

Summer tourist season at Potawatomi Park starts off summer strong

The summer tourism season started off strong at Potawatomi State Park in Sturgeon Bay.  Perfect weather last Saturday and Sunday made the park and its attractions very popular with overnight and day visitors.  Superintendent Erin Brown Stender calls it a very good start for Summer 2019.



Campground reservations are made online and no later than 48-hours before your scheduled arrival. Brown Stender says campground sites for weekend stays are already filling up. 

Some Peshtigo Fire victims finally get a memorial in Door County

Visitors finally know some of the names of the 60 people killed when a fiery tornado spawned by the Great Peshtigo Fire swept through their village near Brussels in 1871.  A plaque identifying those killed by the fire at Williamsonville was recently erected at Tornado Memorial Park on County Highway DK.  Door County Park Superintendent Ben Nelson credits the efforts of researchers to keep alive the names of the fire victims.



A dedication ceremony for the plaque to the Williamsonville Fire victims will be held Sunday, June 2nd at 1:00 PM at Tornado Memorial Park on Highway DK near Brussels.

600-gallon tank shows Great Lakes fish and inspires anglers

Visitors who wonder what kinds of fish live in Sturgeon Bay can get a clearer idea at a 600-gallon tank to be displayed at Peninsula State Park in Fish Creek.  The free viewing contains fish taken directly from the bay. Peninsula State Park Naturalist Kathleen Harris says the numbers and types of fish brought in are hard to predict each year and she hopes it gets visitors thinking about angling on their own.



Harris says poles will be on hand for those who want to practice casting weighted lines on dry land.  The 600-gallon tank is on display at Peninsula State Park on Shore Road in Fish Creek June 1st and 2nd and you don't need a park sticker to get in.

Sevastopol school additions require rainwater retention pond

A rainwater retention pond will be part of the new additions to the Sevastopol school building.  The district's CORE team learned more about that requirement at its' recent meeting on the site plan.  The retention pond is required by the Department of Natural Resources because of the larger size of the building additions and the creation of 28 new parking spots.  Superintendent Kyle Luedtke says the pond must meet specific DNR requirements to handle the increased rain and snow runoff from the new facilities.



The CORE team also learned that the existing school greenhouse must be demolished before the second half of the 2019-2020 school year.  That's in preparation for the start of construction next spring.

Drivers warned of more deer activity in June

With deer activity typically increasing in June, area drivers are being advised to be extra alert on the roads.  According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, 515 motorists were injured last June in deer/vehicle crashes and four people were killed statewide. Chief Deputy Pat McCarty of the Door County Sheriff’s Department advises drivers to buckle up and avoid distractions while on roads, especially in rural settings



Chief Deputy McCarty adds that if a collision with a deer is unavoidable, you should brake firmly and stay in your lane.  He recommends contacting the sheriff’s department for deer carcass removal even if there is no damage to your vehicle.  If the carcass is still on the traveled roadway you should call 911.  

Local Vietnam War Veterans to visit "The Wall That Heals"

A replica of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C. will be in Manitowoc later this summer and Door County veterans will have a free ride to see it. “The Wall That Heals” will be on display at the Manitowoc Expo grounds from September 12th through the 15th.  Three buses have been chartered for September 14 to leave from the ADRC building in Sturgeon Bay at 10 am and return at 4 pm.  Army veteran Dennis Ott says he has experienced “The Wall” first hand and hopes others will take advantage of this opportunity. 


The Wall That Heals honors the more than three million Americans who served in the U.S. Armed Forces in the Vietnam War, and it bears the names of the more than 58,000 men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam. Door County veterans interested in reserving free transportation should call the contact information found below.  Each veteran may bring along a guest but must reserve by August 1.       


Call 920-746-7198

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