Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Washington Co. to implement park stickers in 2018

This week the Washington County Board approved the Parks Fiscal Sustainability Plan.

The plan aims to operate County Parks and Trails independent of the Property Tax Levy and sets course to achieve this over the next three years in order to maintain and improve parks for current and future generations of park users.

A major component of the plan includes new user fees in 2018 – daily entrance fees or annual park entrance stickers for County Parks to include the following parks: Glacier Hills Park, Ackerman’s Grove Park, Heritage Trails Park, Sandy Knoll Park, Leonard J. Yahr Park, and Homestead Hollow Park.

“We will be encouraging park and trail users and non-users to consider purchasing annual park stickers to support park maintenance and improvements,” said Central Services Director Jamie Ludovic.

“Parks and trails offer many economic and social benefits to our community that we intend to pay for through new and innovative revenue streams. We plan to structure this in a way that transparently demonstrates that money collected for parks and trails, stays with parks and trails.”

Eisenbahn Trail users will be encouraged to support the parks and trails by purchasing annual stickers.

However, the fee is planned to be assessed per vehicle entering the parks and no charge will be enforced for walkers, ATVs, snowmobiles or bikers at this time.

“We’re still hopeful that these user groups will support our system by purchasing the stickers,” Ludovic added.

Fee prices will be authorized as part of the County’s 2018 budget but are being recommended as follows: Residents would pay $5 daily or $30 for an annual sticker. Non-residents pay $5 daily or $40 annual. Senior Citizens pay $5 daily or $25 annual. A sticker for a second vehicle would be $20 annual. A bus would be $10 daily and the boat launch passes, which include park entrance, would be $8 daily or $80 annual.

Keith Franz, director of Venerable Fire Museum has died                            By Ron Naab

Keith Franz, the director of The Venerable Fire Museum Inc., on Hillside Road in Slinger has died. Word of the death was initially posted by the Milwaukee Fire Bell Club.

Franz was well known in the Wisconsin fire service and in many national venues of fire service.

Under Franz’s guidance, inspiration, and direction his non-profit Cedar Lake Venerable Fire Museum was created and is maintained.

“Keith really worked to promote the history of the fire service,” said Ron Naab, President of Badger Firefighters Association. “He was very meticulous; he had furniture from old fire stations and he restored fire trucks to like new condition.”

Naab raved about Franz’s collection of fire boxes. “Keith lived and breathed fire history,” said Naab. “Even though he was never a true firefighter he was respected for his knowledge and dedication by career and volunteer firefighters.”

On Labor Day of 1961, the Cedar Lake Fire Company was created and later became the Venerable Fire Museum, Inc.

This fire museum is considered as one of the five best fire museums in the United States.

Franz also served a number of years as the Wisconsin State Fire Chiefs Association Executive Secretary, along with serving as Secretary of the Washington County Fire Chiefs Association.

The Venerable Fire Museum was featured in the John McGivern series Around the Corner on PBS. Details on memorial services will be posted as soon as the information is available.

Stocky’s Fast Track auction is Tuesday, June 20

There’s an auction June 20 at Stocky’s Fast Track in the Town of Trenton. Owner Jeff Stockhausen announced Sunday, May 28 he was closing after 16 years in business. Stockhausen said he’d like to sell the business but since he didn’t get any takers he is opting to lease the space. The building is roughly 21,000 square feet and the asking price through Boss Realty is $1.25 million. The auction starts at 10:30 a.m.

Town Hall meeting for veterans

The Milwaukee (Zablocki) VA Medical Center and Milwaukee VA Regional Office will jointly host a town hall/claims clinic for veterans, service members, their families and survivors, to discuss VA benefits and health care.

Community members and organizations that assist veterans with their benefits, as well as the general public are also invited to attend.

The meeting will take place at UW-Washington County on Wednesday June 21 from 4:30 p.m. –  5:30 p.m. The VA has reserved Room 201 at UW-Washington County for this free event.

Tom Hostad wins Cliff and Betty Nelson Award

United Way of Washington County presented Tom Hostad with the Clifford A. & Elizabeth M. Nelson Volunteer Leadership Award. The award was created to recognize an individual in Washington County who has demonstrated notable community leadership and a long-term commitment to volunteering.

Hostad has championed and led causes in human services, economic development, arts, religion, service clubs, and youth.  He is a long-standing member of Rotary, serving as president for both Hartford Rotary and the Hartford Rotary Foundation.  He is also a founding member and chairperson of the Washington County Workforce Alliance.

Advocating for the improvement of lives and community conditions, Hostad currently volunteers as board president for United Way of Washington County.  He has served three board terms, and chaired the United Way Campaign in 2004.

Additionally, Hostad is a current board member of The Threshold and has volunteered in leadership roles for Boys & Girls Clubs of Washington County, Waubun and Great Blue Heron Girl Scout Councils, Schauer Arts Center, Hartford Area Chamber of Commerce, and Redeemer Lutheran Church.

40th annual Steak in the Park is Tuesday, June 20

Don’t miss the chance for some great food and a good time on Tuesday, June 20 at Regner Park as the West Bend Noon Kiwanis Club holds its 40th annual Steak in the Park fundraiser.

Proceeds will be generously designated to the Threshold’s Birth to 3 Program. There will be steak or chicken dinner, raffles, music, fun for only $20 per person.

Updates & tidbits

Shop indoors this weekend at Rummage-A-Rama!at Washington County Fair Park. There’s free parking next to the building and admission each day has been dropped to only $1 at the door.

-The Kewaskum Area Chamber of Commerce is gearing up for its 2017 Party on the Pavement. Money raised during the Tuesday, June 27 event will support Kewaskum Area Community Projects.

-Holy Angels Student of the Month for May 2017 include: 6th grader Kaylee Schiller, 7th grader Isabelle Sternig and 8th grader Jordyn Wedemayer.

-The Richfield Historical Society  invites you to Step Back In Time on Sunday on July 9  and August 13. The Historical Park’s Messer/Mayer Mill, Mill House and Lillicrapp Welcome Center will be open and staffed with tour guides.

-There are 59 new units being added in Phase II construction at Cast Iron Luxury Living in West Bend.  Phase II is officially over 25% pre-leased. Cast Iron is located in the former West Bend Company building. An opening celebration of Phase II is scheduled for Saturday, August 12. It will feature a pig roast with live entertainment.

– Horicon Bank has stepped up this year to sponsor the fireworks during the July 4th celebration at Riverside Park in West Bend.

-The Kettle Moraine Sport Riders 34th Annual Motorcycle Hill Climb is Father’s Day Sunday, June 18 at Sunburst Ski Hill. Gates open 9 a.m. and the first bike goes up the hill at noon.

– Tennies Ace Hardware in Jackson is looking for full and part-time sales associates. The locally-owned hardware store is looking for someone who enjoys working with people and is handy with home repair projects.

 – After meeting with National Weather Service officials and the Osceola  Management Director Tuesday afternoon, Fond du Lac County Communications and Emergency Management Director Bobbi Hicken said it was determined an EF-0 tornado hit the Town of Osceola Monday night.

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