Picking the Right Kayak Paddle: Series III

One thing I’ve notice is that most kayakers spend more time picking their kayak than picking their paddle.  And the wrong paddle can impact your kayak adventure in Door County more than you think. 


For years in my kayak talks and articles I suggest people buy the lightest most expensive paddle they can afford.  Lighter paddles are less fatiguing, meaning you can enjoy your time on the water longer and feel less tired at the end of your day.  More expensive paddles use better components and will last longer.  I would suggest trying to find a paddle no heavier than 31 or 32 ounces.  Personally, I prefer to be under 30 ounces.  Ideally, when you are on the water kayaking you should be enjoying all the beauty Door County hast to offer, not thinking about your tired shoulders and arms from a heavy paddle!


For your lighter recreational and touring sit-in kayaks a standard sized blade is what you will be looking for.  For the heavier sit-on-top (SOT) kayaks most will choose a paddle with oversized blades.  These have a bigger bite to help push the heavier SOT kayaks. 


Picking the proper length paddle is also very important and there are tables you can find on-line to help with this.  The correct paddle length is a combination of your height and the width of your kayak.  Most recreational and touring kayaks are narrower and require a shorter paddle.  Most SOT kayaks, along with being heavier, are also wider and would usually take a longer paddle.


Times are challenging and for many the price of products is a big consideration.  Your kayak and paddle are going to last many years, so any investment you make will be a good one.  If you have any questions related to kayaking, I’d be very happy to answer them.  Just email me at

Picnic celebrates recovering individuals

Recognizing the importance of your sobriety and the impact it has on your loved ones will be celebrated this Sunday in Sturgeon Bay. The 115 Club and the Door County Alcohol and Other Drug Coalition are joining forces at the Sunset Park Pavilion for their second annual summer picnic for the recovery community and their supporters. Door County AODA Coordinator Shauna Blackledge says it is important for those trying to kick alcohol and drug habits that there is support for them whenever they need it.

The picnic runs from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday and it features live music and food. Freewill donations will be accepted. We will talk to Laurie Chapman from The 115 Club to learn more about the organization in the coming days.


Biden signs gun control legislation

Your wait for a gun in some cases may be a little longer than usual after President Joe Biden signed the bipartisan bill into law Saturday morning. Under the new law, states would receive $750 million to implement “red flag laws” that would allow them to remove guns from people who are deemed to be a threat to themselves and others. Additional funding would go towards mental health services and school safety projects. Background checks for gun purchasers under the age of 21 could take about 10 days longer so juvenile and mental health records could be examined closely. It would also be unlawful for people who fail a background check and for those convicted of domestic abuse to buy a gun. The signature comes days after the U.S. Supreme Court voted to expand gun rights after they struck down a concealed hand gun ban in New York. 




On Thursday, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) released the following statement after voting against the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act.


“The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act is a classic example of Washington dysfunction. Negotiated by a ‘gang’ with no committee process and no ability to offer amendments, billions in spending with a phantom pay for, and provisions that ignore constitutional rights. As a result, I could not support it, although I do want to congratulate Max Schachter, Tom and Gena Hoyer, Tony Montalto, and all the Stand With Parkland parents for their strong advocacy, which resulted in the Luke and Alex School Safety Act being included in the bill.” 



 U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin voted for the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, legislation that will enact the most significant new reforms to take on gun violence since the 1990s. The legislation passed the Senate by a 65-33 vote.


“For the past three decades, Congress has failed to take action on gun violence and far too many lives have been lost. Today, we move from doing nothing to saving lives.” said Senator Baldwin. “This bipartisan legislation will help protect people from gun violence, help reduce mass shootings, and help keep kids safe at school. We are taking a positive step forward to expand background checks, protect survivors of domestic violence, and help Wisconsin join 19 other states that have put in place red flag laws that allow law enforcement or family members to petition courts to temporarily remove deadly firearms from someone who is a threat to themselves or someone else. We are making investments that expand access to mental health services, improve school safety, and fund anti-violence programs that will help build safer communities. I have said for years that we have a moral responsibility to act on gun violence and now we are taking action to save lives.”




Support for State Crisis Intervention Orders. Provides $750 million for the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program for states like Wisconsin to create “red flag” laws and administer extreme risk protection order programs that help ensure deadly weapons are kept out of the hands of individuals whom a court has determined to be a significant danger to themselves or others, consistent with state and federal due process and constitutional protections. State crisis intervention court proceedings and related programs include: Mental health courts; Drug courts; Veterans courts; Extreme risk protection order programs, which must include "pre-deprivation and post-deprivation due process rights that prevent any violation or infringement" of the Constitution and the right to be represented by counsel.


Protections for Victims of Domestic Violence. Closes the “boyfriend loophole” by adding convicted domestic violence abusers in dating relationships to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). Creates a process for removal from NICS five years after the completion of the sentence, only if there are no intervening prohibited crimes or other similar offenses.


Clarified Definition of ‘Federally Licensed Firearms Dealer’. Cracks down on criminals who illegally evade licensing requirements and clarifies which sellers need to register, conduct background checks, and keep appropriate records.


Penalties for ‘Straw Purchasing’. Creates federal straw purchasing and trafficking criminal offenses, allowing prosecutors to target dangerous illegal gunrunners and illegal weapons trafficking.


Enhanced Reviews Process for Gun Buyers Under 21. Requires an investigative period to review juvenile and mental health records, including checks with state databases and local law enforcement, for buyers under 21 years of age. NICS will have up to three business days to conduct the initial enhanced search. If that search reveals a possible disqualifying record, NICS will have an extended window of no more than ten business days total to complete the investigation. It is not an established waiting period since each individual's review could be vastly different from just a matter of hours to up to 10 days. Provides additional funding to the FBI to administer new process checks in NICS and grants to help states upgrade criminal and mental health records therein.


Violence Interruption Funding. Provides $250 million in funding for community-based violence prevention initiatives.




National Suicide Prevention Lifeline/9-8-8: Appropriates $150 million to support implementation of the 9-8-8 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline that provides 24/7, free and confidential support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. In 2019, Senator Baldwin introduced the bipartisan National Suicide Hotline Designation Act, which passed Congress and became law in 2020.


Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic: Expands the existing Medicaid CCBHC demonstration program to all states to increase access to community based behavioral health services.


School-based mental health: Helps states to implement, enhance, and expand school-based health programs under Medicaid through updated guidance, technical assistance, and state planning grants.


Gold standard in mental health coverage for children: Improves oversight of states’ implementation of Medicaid’s Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit, the country’s gold standard in children’s health coverage, to strengthen children’s access to comprehensive mental health care services.


Telemental health services for children: Requires CMS to provide guidance to states on how they can increase access to behavioral health services through telehealth under Medicaid and CHIP.


Teleconsults for pediatricians and mental health specialists: Provides $80 million in grants to support pediatric primary care providers to rapidly access mental health specialists’ expertise in guiding the treatment of their patients.


Training for pediatric providers: Appropriates $60 million over five years for training in mental health for primary care clinicians who treat children and youth.


Community and first responder mental health training: Appropriates $120 million over four years to prepare and train community members and first responders on how to appropriately and safely respond to individuals with mental disorders.


Support for states to expand mental health services: Provides $250 million for states, DC, and territories to enhance comprehensive community mental health services.


Building awareness of and access to services for mental health: Appropriates $240 million over four years for programs that increase awareness of mental health issues among school-aged youth, provide training for school personnel and other adults who interact with school-aged youth to detect and respond to mental health issues, and connect school-aged youth who may have behavioral health issues and their families to needed services.


School-based trauma support: Includes a set aside of $28 million for grants to support trauma care in school settings.


Support after traumatic events: Appropriates $40 million over four years to improve treatment and services for children, adolescents, and families who have experienced traumatic events.




School Based Mental Health Services and Staff: Provides $500 million through the School Based Mental Health Services Grant Program to increase the number of qualified mental health service providers that provide school based mental health services to students in school districts with demonstrated need.


Training and Pipeline Development for School Based Mental Health Staff: Provides $500 million in funding to the School Based Mental Health Service Professionals Demonstration Grant. This money will help train and diversify the pipeline of school counselors, school social workers, and school psychologists.


Improving Conditions for Student Learning: Provides $1 billion in funding through Title IV-A to support a variety of activities to improve conditions for student learning, including developing positive school climates through evidence based practices.


Out of School Programs: Provides $50 million in funding to the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program, which funds extracurricular, after school and summer programs, with a focus of new funding to target programs for older youth.


School Safety: Provides $300 million in funding through the STOP School Violence Act to institute safety measures in and around schools, support school violence prevention efforts and provide training to school personnel and students. Codifies the clearinghouse, which provides evidence-based resources to improve school safety. Prohibits use of funds under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to train or equip any person with dangerous weapons in schools.

Krohn captures blue ribbons in final state fair contest

Roger Krohn from Agropur in Luxemburg is going out on top after the Wisconsin State Fair Dairy Promotions Board held its 2022 Dairy Products Contest on Thursday.


Krohn, the Master Cheesemaker who is retiring at the end of the month, won for his smoked provolone and provolone cheese entries. His nephew, Pat Doell, came home with his own stack of awards. Doell’s entry for mozzarella cheese won first place in the category, while his provolone came in second place and his smoked provolone finished in third behind Krohn.


Ben Shibler of Ron’s Wisconsin Cheese and Pagel’s Ponderosa was recognized for his snack cheese. His garlic and dill cheese curds took third place in the flavored cheese curd category. His mozzarella cheese whips took third behind Doell in the mozzarella category and his string cheese also took third place in the category of the same name. His highest placed offering was his jalapeno mozzarella cheese whips, which took second in the pepper cheese category.


Award winners will be recognized for their entries during the Wisconsin State Fair in August. You can click this link to see a list of all of the award winners.

Supreme Court overrules Roe vs. Wade

The Supreme Court of the United States ruled 6-3 on Friday that you no longer have a federal right to an abortion. The decision fell largely along ideological lines with Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas, Amy Coney-Barrett, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh voting in favor of ending the protection. Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan voted against it. The issue of abortion will now be left to the states, which in Wisconsin’s case could revert to a law dating back to 1849. The law only makes exceptions for abortions necessary to save the mother’s life. Governor Tony Evers called for a special session on the issue on Wednesday, but it was gaveled in and out of without discussion or debate. Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul has said that he would not enforce the law. Planned Parenthood clinics stopped taking appointments for abortions past this weekend in anticipation of the ruling that leaked earlier this year.



WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin issued the following statement today in response to the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

“An activist majority of the Supreme Court has overturned Roe and nearly 50 years of precedent, taking away the constitutional rights of American women to make their own personal choices about their body, their health, and their family. Republicans have taken Wisconsin women back to 1849 and it is Republicans who want to keep us there with support for having politicians interfere in the freedoms of women who will now have fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers have had for decades. I ask people to join this fight with their voices and their votes because we will not be taken back, we will move forward.”


On Friday, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) released the following statement after the Supreme Court ruled in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization:


“Today is a victory for life and for those who have fought for decades to protect the unborn. For almost fifty years the decision of nine unelected Justices have prevented a democratically derived consensus on the profound moral issue of abortion to be formed.  This decision will now allow that democratic process to unfold in each state to determine at what point does society have the responsibility to protect life.  Hopefully, the debate will be conducted with sincerity, compassion, and respect for the broad range of views that people hold.”



Beach access from all points in Whitefish Dunes State Park open

You can now head onto the beach from all access points in Whitefish Dunes State Park. The high water levels and erosion from the lake forced closures of the first beach access point indefinitely and the third access point temporarily. This had a negative impact on the visitation of the beach because of the first being the only ADA-accessible entrance. Sarah Stepanik, the park manager, explains that higher levels from the lake are natural and happen infrequently.



Since the closure of the first access point, getting to the lake has been significantly more challenging. Now, Stepanik says the opening of the access points has made it easier for visitors to enjoy the beach without having to walk around.

YMCA expanding Wellness Center, adding Youth Activity Center

You and your family will have the opportunity to enjoy many more youth activities and events at the Door County YMCA as early as the fall of 2023.  Thanks to its Heart of the Community Capital Campaign fund the Door County YMCA will be putting on a large expansion to the current Sturgeon Bay campus.  Heidi Erickson, CEO of the Door County YMCA, says the final phase of the Capital Campaign stands at $8.9 million raised for a $9.9 million goal.  An anonymous donor has pledged $500,000 as a matching gift to help achieve the goal.  Mission Advancement Director Tonya Felhofer shares the details of a big expansion by the YMCA for the wellness center and new youth activity center.



The new addition and renovation will take place on the north side of the existing YMCA building and cover about 16,000 square feet.  The Groundbreaking is planned for September and if all goes according to plan, a ribbon-cutting would take place in September of 2023.  You can listen to the entire conversation with Heidi Erickson and Tonya Felhofer about the future expansion plans for the YMCA on the podcast page here. 




News Release: 

Door County YMCA launches the final phase of the Heart of the Community Capital Campaign

The Door County YMCA is excited to announce the final phase of its Heart of the Community Capital Campaign. This campaign, which started in the fall of 2019 was paused by spring of 2020, due to the pandemic. The campaign has been in a quiet phase since its re-launch in June 2021. Thanks to the generosity of early donors, the campaign has raised $8.9 million dollars.

“As we head into the final fundraising phase of this project, we are excited to share that we have received a $500,000 matching gift,” said Heidi Erickson, Door County YMCA CEO, “meaning we need to raise another $500,000 in our community to complete this $9.9 million dollar project.”

Since opening its doors in 1986, the Door County YMCA has listened to the community, offering the programs, and services individuals and families in the area need. The current Sturgeon Bay Program Center was established in 1997, followed by the addition of the Carla and Ellsworth Peterson Aquatics Center in 2001. Since that time there haven’t been any significant capital improvements outside of general maintenance.

Today, we are nearing historically high membership numbers. Current participation levels are stretching program spaces, limiting the organization’s ability to provide the innovative programs our community needs.

A renovation and expansion of the Sturgeon Bay facility will allow the YMCA to provide a welcoming, supportive environment where all community members can come together; increase accessibility for older adults and those with mobility challenges; create more gathering spaces for education, meetings, and community connections; deepen partnerships with other organizations; and ensure that the organization is meeting the community’s needs now and for future generations.

“The addition of a Youth Activity Center will be a highlight of this renovation and expansion”, said Tonya Felhofer, Mission Advancement Executive. “We will be able to bring some of our most important youth programs like camp and after-school care, back onto our campus, where these children will have access to our pool, our gyms, the park, and our new outdoor learning classroom.”

“This is an exciting time for the Door County Y,” said Tom Beerntsen, Capital Campaign Co-Chair, “but there’s still work to be done and we need the help of our community.”

The Sturgeon Bay Program center serves as the community hub, bringing neighbors together from all walks of life for more than 30 years. It is at the Y where friendships flourish, children are nurtured, and people grow stronger in spirit, mind, and body.

The Door County YMCA has contracted with The Boldt Company and will break ground in September 2022. To learn more about the Heart of the Community Capital Campaign and support it, contact Heidi Erickson, CEO or Tonya Felhofer, Mission Advancement Executive at 920.743.4949




WalMart evacuated and closes due to incident

The Sturgeon Bay WalMart closed Thursday afternoon for a few hours due to a reported strange smell and haze in the building.  At about 2 pm, store employees and customers were evacuated into the parking lot.  The Sturgeon Bay Fire Department and Police Department were dispatched and were on the scene initially for about an hour.  Assistant Fire Chief Kalin Montevideo says crews went in and noticed quickly that the situation remedied itself.  No injuries were reported and the cause is still being investigated.   No other details are available at this time and WalMart reopened at about 4:30 pm Thursday.  Door County Daily News will update this story as more information becomes available.  

Village of Ephraim names its Fyr Ball Chieftain

After a two-year break, the Fyr Ball and the naming of its Chieftain returned. The Fyr Ball commences at the beginning of summer in Ephraim, and the Chieftain is the Viking leader of the event. This year Jim Reeve was named the 56th Fyr Ball Chieftain as a recognition of his dedication to the village through being involved in multiple groups. Reeve says he is honored to have been given this distinction.



He was able to board a pontoon manned by Vikings to make his entrance and then was honored by lighting the traditional Fyr Ball bonfire. Reeve says the event was a success and was an excellent return for the festival. 


Closures south of Sturgeon Bay planned for next week

If you have to take Wis HWY 42/57 on your daily commute, expect a detour south of Sturgeon Bay starting on June 27th. This project has been in the works since March of 2022 and is looking to potentially be finished in September of 2022. The south side of the project takes place at the junction of Wis HWY 42 and Wis HWY 57. The detour will utilize County H and County S to avoid the work site. The closure is expected to last between one and two work weeks, but will be removed on the weekends.


A map of the detour and closure can be found below. 


Door County Connect ready to drive you five days a week

If you live in Sturgeon Bay and are unable to drive yourself to a location, Door County Connect is ready and able to assist you. For the last six months DCC has been operating under limited hours because of understaffing. Now, they are fully staffed and are offering their services five days a week. Pam Busch the Transportation manager for the Door County Transportation Department explains the impact that the shortage had on the community and the hopes for the lengthened service hours going forward.



The cost for a ride is fairly minimal at $2 for Sturgeon Bay and $5 per trip in the extended service area, which includes up to 10 miles from the Aging and Disability Resource Center in Sturgeon Bay.


Progress on Granary picking up this summer

You may see some substantial changes in the historic Teweles & Brandeis Grain Elevator structure in the next several weeks.  Sturgeon Bay Historical Society Foundation President Laurel Hauser updated the Sturgeon Bay Common Council this week on the progress of the Sturgeon Bay Granary Project. In April, the granary foundation was poured over 51 new pilings. The 31 white pine and hemlock columns, which are 12 feet high, are currently being refurbished in Tennessee and expected to be returned next week. Hauser says Immel Construction will be reinstalling the columns back in their place.  Shear walls will be built to allow the two layers, the grain bin, and the head house, to be reattached to the Granary to restore it to its original 75-foot height. That work will be completed in one to two months, and Hauser notes that the Granary received some national recognition last month.



Hauser added that the amended development agreement approved by the city last month should be signed later this week. The Sturgeon Bay Historical Society Foundation and Granary Project also participated in this week’s first-ever Door County Heritage Days.

Silver Alert issued for Sturgeon Bay woman--UPDATE Found safe

A Sturgeon Bay woman is missing and authorities have issued a Silver Alert. Maynette Jutila, 71, was last seen about 4:30 pm Thursday on Lake Street in Two Rivers while driving to the Fox River Valley area. The Sturgeon Bay Police reported that Jutila was driving a 2008 silver Chevrolet HHR license plate APW1128. She is 5 feet two inches tall and weighs 128 pounds with blue eyes and gray or partially gray hair and was wearing sweatpants and an oversized t-shirt. If you have information on Maynette Jutila’s whereabouts, you are asked to call the Sturgeon Bay Police Department at (920) 746-2450.

Schlender says goodbye to Luxemburg-Casco

You will still see Glenn Schlender around town in the Luxemburg-Casco community, but he plans on watching some of the initiatives he helped start from a distance. Schlender will wrap up his eight-year stint as Luxemburg-Casco School District Superintendent this week after announcing his intentions to retire this winter. It has been bittersweet for Schlender, who credits a leadership course he brought in for his staff members for not just making him a better superintendent, but also a better husband and father. He says there is a lot to be proud of during his stint as superintendent, whether you can see them from the road or not.

Jo-Ellen Fairbanks will take over for Schlender as superintendent next month. He is not the only local superintendent leaving their post at the end of this month. Gibraltar Superintendent Tina Van Meer announced her decision to retire last December after ten years on the job. The Gibraltar School Board picked Brett Strousland from the Germantown School District as their next superintendent in May. Algoma Superintendent Nick Cochart resigned from his position to make way for Jesse Brinkmann, formerly of Green Bay Area School District.

Door County prepares for dairy days of summer

Even as June Dairy Month winds down, you’ll see thousands celebrate all things milk, cheese, and cows in Door County over the next two weeks. On Thursday, Door County takes its turn hosting the Wisconsin Holstein Association District 7 Holstein Show at the fairgrounds, where 200 registered cattle and their owners will be battling for bragging rights ahead of the state fair and county fairs. In recent years, rising costs, lower to non-existent profits, aging populations, and consolidation are all causes that have caused dairy farms across the state to disappear. Jacob Brey of Brey Cycle Farms in Sturgeon Bay hopes events like this weekend’s show inspire today’s youth to continue the state’s dairy tradition.

The Wisconsin Holstein Association District 7 Holstein Show will take place at the Door County Fairgrounds beginning at 10 a.m. One of the competitors will be Southern Door graduate Chloe LaCrosse. LaCrosse will be attending UW-Madison this fall for Dairy Science on a full academic scholarship. She also received the $1,500 Oscar G. & Mary W. Woelfel Memorial Scholarship from the Wisconsin 4-H Foundation. June Dairy Month cannot be contained to just  June as the Sevastopol FFA hosts their annual dairy breakfast on July 3rd.

New "Swim-A-Thon" coming to YMCA

Your child can participate in an endurance-challenging, swim-run event later this summer at the Door County YMCA. The first-ever Swim-A-Thon will be held on Saturday, August 6, and will be open to any child eight to eighteen years old. Aquatics Director Nicole Shepard says Door County Y Swim Coach Mike McHugh and the swim team are organizing the competition that starts with laps in the pool and then moves outside to Peterson Park for the run portion.



The age categories are broken into two-year increments. More information will be made available soon, with registration starting in early July. You can listen to the entire conversation with Nicole Shepard about the Swim-A-Thon and the opportunities to become a lifeguard at the Door County YMCA on the podcast page here.

Ephraim continues to form short-term rental ordinance

You will learn next month if the Village of Ephraim will be the next Door County community to pass stricter regulations on the owners of short-term rental properties. The Ephraim Village Board saw the latest ordinance version of the ordinance at its meeting last week. Getting to this point has been a long time since Ephraim’s planning committee took up the issue during the winter. It comes to a couple of years after the state changed how it regulates property owners that rent their buildings through sites like Airbnb and Vrbo and about a year after Liberty Grove and Sevastopol made changes to their regulations. Village Administrator Brent Bristol believes they have been transparent during the process, dedicating 15 hours of discussion to the topic itself while making adjustments to the ordinance along the way.

Colin Welford lives and works in Ephraim, and as a side-venture, operates short-term rental properties. He is currently renovating the former Door County Sled Dogs building into a residence that can also be used as a vacation home. He feels that the STR owners in Ephraim have been painted with a broad brush, based on the assumption that Ephraim Short-Term Rentals are a “problem” or a negative component in the village. Welford argues that Short-Term Rentals play different roles in different communities, and so each needs to be evaluated independently. He and a number of other STR owners have attended village meetings to communicate the message that they care about the village more than just making a few bucks.


Welford challenges the notion that the STR ordinance will “level the playing field” between them and more traditional lodging options in the village. Beyond the standards of the already-required license from the state, the new proposed village ordinance requires detailed site plans, floor plans, neighbor notifications, new penalties for disturbances such as unruly guests, a 24-hour-a-day contact number, and other restrictions. Some of these pieces from the ordinance are stricter for STRs than for other lodging counterparts, Welford says. He added that “STRs seem to be singled out, held to a higher standard, and have to pay for the privilege.” 


Board President Mike McCutcheon postponed the decision until the July meeting to allow members to digest the discussion and for some of the ordinance language to be tweaked. 

Two-Vehicle Crash closes HWY 57 late Tuesday night

If you were traveling on HWY 57 by County H near Brussels on Tuesday night, you might have seen the remnants of a bad accident. The dispatch report from the Door County Sheriff’s office shows it was called in at 9:49 pm. Two vehicles were involved in the accident, leaving one on its side while the other had severe front-end damage. There were injuries sustained from both parties, and they were transported to the hospital by EMS and Eagle 3. The report has not been completed, so details on the cause of the accident have yet to be disclosed. Door County Daily News will provide updates when they are available. 


Sturgeon Bay delays Little Lake project, moves on big housing projects

Sturgeon Bay’s Shoreline Restoration Project for Bradley Lake will have to wait another year. After a lengthy discussion Tuesday night, the Sturgeon Bay Common Council agreed with the recommendation from City Engineer Chad Shefchik and Municipal Director Mike Barker recommendation to reject the scaled-down project.  The body of water at Sunset Park, which is locally known as Little Lake, has been a major concern for several years.  The council then voted to form a committee on Bradley Lake to work on future project plans rather than investing in more recommendations from consultants. 


The Common Council also moved on recommendations from the Finance/Purchasing & Building Committee regarding two separate development agreements.  One action approved the agreement with Duquaine Development for a 68-unit apartment complex located on Sturgeon Bay’s west side north of Target.  The other development agreement unanimously approved was with Premier SB Duluth Avenue, LLC for a 96-unit housing project that will be located east of Target. 


In his Mayor’s report, David Ward noted that the recent approval of housing developments by the City of Sturgeon Bay will mean nearly 300 additional units that should start in July.  

Door County preparing to vaccinate children under five in July

You will be able to choose to have your children under five years old vaccinated against COVID-19 in Door County by the second week of July. The Centers for Disease Control authorized the COVID-19 vaccine for the country’s youngest individuals over the weekend after getting its approval from the Food and Drug Administration last week. Door County COVID-19 Response Coordinator Bill Hartmann says they have not received many calls from parents about the vaccine as they wait for the final guidance from the state.

Hartmann says families should talk to their doctors to help make the right decision on whether or not their kids get vaccinated. Of the 1.5 million cases of COVID-19 in the state since the beginning of the pandemic, 8.5 percent have involved children under the age of nine. The age group also accounts for one percent of those hospitalized and less than one percent of those who have died. Wisconsin Public Radio reports that public health officials believe the vaccination rate for those under five to be even lower than what is seen for those under the age of 11, which is just shy of 32 percent in Door County.

Poultry shows back in flight in Wisconsin

You will be able to see chickens, ducks, turkeys, and other poultry at this year’s county fairs. The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection recently lifted the state order prohibiting live events featuring poultry. DATCP placed the order back in April after domestic flocks across the state started to become infected with the highly pathogenic avian flu. Since March, close to two dozen domestic flocks in 14 Wisconsin had animals infected with the bird-flu. The order forced the Door County 4-H Small Animal Swap in April go without birds and left some youth wondering if they would be able to show poultry at their respective fairs. Kewaunee County Poultry Project Advisor Deb Ahrens told the kids on Monday that they would be able to participate in the fair with their animals, marking a third straight year of uncertainty for the families involved. That does not mean the kids were taking it easy with the preparations, even if they did not use real birds for their small group workshops.

Ahrens says she is looking to the state for guidance on how to make next month’s Kewaunee County Fair safe for the animals, exhibitors, and visitors. DATCP recommends poultry farmers make sure they continue practicing strong biosecurity measures like cleaning and disinfecting, restricting access by visitors and wild birds, and wearing separate shoes and clothes while around flocks.

Southern Door survey to determine district's future

You can have a say in what Southern Door School District will look like in the future with a few swipes of your pen or a couple of clicks of your mouse. Southern Door School District recently sent out a survey to its residents asking them about a pair of referenda questions on the horizon. One will look at the district’s operations to maintain programs, services, and class sizes. The second will deal with facilities planning and potential improvement plans. Southern Door School District Superintendent Chris Peterson hopes the survey gives them a guide on moving forward so they can design a plan that works for everybody at little to no additional tax impact.

You can return your paper survey to the district office or via the mail. You can also click on this link to fill it out online. You can contact the district office to receive an access number if you live in the district and did not receive a survey or need additional copies. The surveys are due before July 4th.

Power outage impacts Casco area Monday afternoon

A power outage on Monday afternoon in Kewaunee County left over 1,100 Wisconsin Public Service customers without power for about one hour.  According to the WPS Outage Map, the electrical outage occurred at about 3:20 pm, causing some businesses to close early, including the Village Kitchen in Casco.  Three outages in the Casco area left 877 customers without power for about one hour, while Luxemburg, the Towns of Lincoln, Pierce, and Red River also were affected.  WPS Spokesperson Amy Jahns told Door County Daily News that the power outage was caused by a fire on one of their poles in the Casco area and that power was restored shortly before 4 pm.   

Stay safe when lightning strikes

June 21st is lightning safety awareness day in Wisconsin, there are a few tips that can help keep you safe. Warmer weather encourages more people to spend time outdoors, but with fun nature activities, there still can be a chance of danger. If you are within hearing distance of thunder, you are probably also within striking distance with lightning. When you hear a storm rolling in, it is important to be aware of your surroundings and seek shelter if necessary. Ready Wisconsin also has some tips in case a severe thunderstorm is rolling in that you can find here.

First Annual Door County History Days kicks off

On Monday, you may have seen institutions from around the county collect at the Door County Maritime Museum to kick off the first-ever Door County History Days. At the kickoff event, representatives from the different historical organizations met, and Heritage Alliance of Door County Chair Cody Schreck, Destination Door County CEO Julie Gilbert, and Wisconsin Historical Society Director Christian Overland spoke to the public. The Meet and Greet also included the debut of the Door County Heritage Map for the week. We talked to Schreck about the importance of preserving the area’s history.



This celebration of history will serve as a time for people to get to know the places in Door County that showcase history. Each day is full of special programs throughout the peninsula. You can find the list of events here



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