Tag Archives: Around the Bend

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Perkins Restaurant & Bakery in WB officially closed 

Word circulated around West Bend on Monday, Jan. 8 about the closure of Perkins Restaurant & Bakery, 2400 W. Washington St. A manager at the store confirmed the business had closed. The property is owned by Mizpah Beach Properties LP of San Diego, California.  The property was purchased Aug. 1, 2006 for $1,807,024.

The Perkins franchise is owned by Pat Correll with CBT. Correll said corporate Perkins is mandating a remodel be completed by December 2018.

“That means franchisees like myself have to remodel all of our stores to their specifications by 2018 and that probably contributed to our decision at this time that it was not economically feasible at that location to move forward,” Correll said.

CBT leased the location since Rocky Rococo closed in late 1990. “I’ve been in there about 28 years as a Perkins,” Correll said. CBT has eight other Perkins locations in the Greater Milwaukee area. “Those locations will be in the process of remodeling however the West Bend location did not make the cut,” he said.

Staff said it was extremely surprised by the news and they didn’t know. There was a note on the door of the business Monday, Jan. 8 notifying customers the location, 2400 W. Washington St., was to close “permanently!!!!!”

Neighbors are starting to ask about gift cards. Those can be used at other Perkins outlets including those in Milwaukee on Port Washington Road and in West Allis.

UPDATE | Just four short days since the news broke there is some scuttlebutt about other interested parties moving into the location.

The closure of Perkins follows another restaurant closure in that area as Mother’s Day Restaurant, 501 Wildwood Road, closed its doors Oct. 17, 2017. Owner Sam Fejzuli said he had trouble getting employees and it was also difficult to “keep everybody happy.”

On a history note: Perkins restaurant was built in 1990 and prior to that, according to the city assessor’s office, the location used to be home to Pizza Slices Inc., which did business as Rocky Rococo in May 1985. In June 1988 Pizza Slices Inc. sold to RAL West Bend Inc. and it sold again in 1991 to Julia E. Schloemer.

Deer Management

There are two more days left in the Deer Management Program in West Bend as bow hunters try to trim the deer population by about 40. Five hunters qualified to take part in the program and after two days they’ve managed to harvest one deer.

“Nobody’s seen a thing today,” said Brad Zuba about his hunt at Lac Lawrann Conservancy. “But then Jeff and I walked out to Schmidt Road down that trail and we saw 20 deer. But we saw nothing sitting in the woods.”

Zuba said it was raining most of the afternoon on Thursday and deer normally hunker down in the thick brush off Schmidt Road. “They should be out moving again tomorrow,” said Zuba. “We just have to wait and see what the weather does. If it gets cold again they’ll be moving around.”

The five-day Deer Management Hunt runs from Jan. 10 – 14. Zuba said they had deer standing right in front of them when they put up their tree stands.

“Actually when it gets cold and freezes again that’ll be good because right now it’s so swampy,” he said. The park is closed to the public Jan. 10 – 14. Bow hunters will be able to keep only one deer; the others will be donated to the local food pantries and processing will be covered by the DNR.

The goal of the pilot hunt is to manage the deer population. The hunters were given 8 permits each for a total of 40 deer. There was also encouragement to collaborate during the hunt.

Hunters have to notify West Bend Police before going into the park and call again when they exit the park. Hunters are able to bait the deer with two gallons of corn per person.  Zuba said they set it out and it’s gone the next day.

“There are a lot of deer in there,” he said. “We’ve got two more days and we’ll hit it hard Saturday and Sunday.” A follow-up meeting will be Jan. 23 at 5:30 p.m. at West Bend City Hall.

Washington County Breakfast on the Farm

The 31st annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm will be at Gehring View Farms this year, 4630 Highway 83 in Hartford. The host family will be Eugene and Christine Gehring and their family Derik, Jordan and Emily. This year’s Breakfast will be Saturday, June 9.

Power outages in Washington Co. will sound like a story in The Onion

There were 1,400 people in West Bend and Kewaskum without power this afternoon… and the reason for the outage is going to sound like a story out of The Onion. “It started at 11:15 a.m. around a power pole on County Road H and Badger Road,” said We Energies media relations Amy Jahns. “That was the source of the issue that caused the fire.”

Neighbors chimed in on Washington County Insider on Facebook that Moraine Park Technical College lost power just after 11 a.m.  The school was running on a generator. Motorists said the traffic lights were out on Highway 33 all the way from 18th and Chestnut to the Villa Park subdivision to the new Russ Darrow Nissan dealership and in Kewaskum.

Jahns said they’ve been seeing similar instances all over southeastern Wisconsin.

“When the weather is warmer with moisture in the air and there’s a lot of road salt, that moisture and road salt can mix and when it gets kicked up onto the power poles it becomes a conductor,” she said. “The electricity is already going through that equipment and sometimes the poles catch fire and that’s what we saw at this particular location.”

Jahns said there have been a dozen such power pole fires since Wednesday, Jan. 10. “We normally see this in the spring time but with the warm up and moisture we had over the past two days we’re seeing it a lot more frequently,” she said.

For the past few weeks much of Wisconsin has been in a deep freeze. On Sunday warmer temps gradually moved into the area and neighbors enjoyed comfortable 40s and even 50 degrees. Late Thursday afternoon there was consistent precipitation and temps dropped dramatically. The National Weather Service is reporting teens through the weekend.

Last day for Book World in West Bend

In October, 2017 the announcement was made that Book World, 1602 S. Main Street, in West Bend was closing.  Actually Book World announced it would close all 45 stores in seven states.

Book World, which touts itself as ‘family owned since 1976,’ opened its store in the Paradise Pavilion in August 2014. The last day for the store in West Bend will be Friday, Jan. 19.

“Since the liquidation sale was announced on Nov. 1, the incredible support of our loyal customers has allowed us to be one of the last stores closed in our chain,” said store manager Dr. Robert Burg. “That is a true testament to the relationship we have had with the larger community and we remain very thankful for that.”  Burg will oversee operations and the deeply-discounted store sales including store fixtures, until end of business at 8 p.m. on Jan. 19.

West Bend East Dance Team shows support for its No. 1 fan

The West Bend East Dance Team gathered Thursday afternoon at Vanity Salon in West Bend to show its support for their No. 1 fan. Cindy Manthey, grandmother of Dance Team sophomore Brianna Vitkus, was recently diagnosed with her second bout of breast cancer.

With chemotherapy on the horizon, Manthey was on her way to the salon to have her head shaved when she was surprised by the girls from the Dance Team.

As Manthey opened the door she was greeted by a flurry of bright pink pompoms and high-pitched squeals and cheers from the girls who offered support on Manthey’s journey.

“I think she’ll be better knowing we’re here to support her through this journey,” said Vitkus.

Vanity Salon stylist Sam Kempf donated her time to Manthey to help ease her into her medical transition. “This is a very emotional time but it’s also pretty inspiring to see how strong some people can be and it’s cool to see how everyone can be supportive,” Kempf said.

Manthey was brought to tears with all the attention. “This is actually very uplifting,” she said.

At the end of the evening Manthey penned a note of thanks.

“Going to get your hair cut preparing for chemo doesn’t seem too exciting UNLESS you have the whole West Bend East Varsity Dance Teamthere to surprise you with pompoms and all! I can’t say enough about coach Kaylee and these special young ladies. Thank you so much for taking time to support me. And just to arrange this wonderful evening – so amazing! And special thanks to my daughter, Laura. Still not sure how she and Brianna kept the secret! That goes for Cambrey and Blake, too!

All of you have given me more than meets the eye. You have given me the feeling of being truly loved and cared for and that is forever in my heart.

And that goes for Vanity Salon LLC, too. They generously donated pink hair extensions for each of the girls. Aly donated her time to deck the girls out with them. And Sam donated her time to give me the cutest hair cut ever! Absolutely LOVE it!

Thank you all for giving so kindly… and for caring. I will remember this forever.

Parents express concern about Privilege Test at Badger School

The White Privilege Test that became a hot topic of discussion prior to the Christmas break, came up again during the public comment section of Monday’s West Bend School Board meeting.

The test was given Dec. 20 to about 150 students at Badger Middle School.  Some parents in the district were upset about the line of questions and what they had to do with education.

Principal Dave Uelmen followed up with a note saying, “During the lesson, some classrooms deployed an optional, anonymous survey that was not derived from district curriculum. The survey was part of a follow up activity to discuss privilege as a lead-in to the “Civil Rights and A Mighty Long Way” module.”

At Monday’s meeting parent Susan True of West Bend addressed the board. Some of her comments are below. (Yes – it’s a little challenging to hear the women. Volume UP!)

– What alarmed me was the recent Privilege Test. When I saw West Bend was on featured on Tucker Carlson and Fox National News I became even more alarmed for the future of my kids in the West Bend Public School System.

– I want to know with this recent West Bend Public Schools making national news for reasons other than academic achievement is this the direction that was referenced by our superintendent Erik Olson upon resignation? And if it’s not what steps are being taken to reduce the exposure of our young minds to the misjudgment of a few teachers?

-This Privilege Survey… is basically in contrast to what Martin Luther King Jr. said, ‘It’s not our outward appearance it’s the content of our character that matters’ and that is why this Privilege Survey was so hard hitting because it’s basically pigeon holing everyone in self reflection on your outward or inward non-character.

Parent Sara Zingsheim then followed with similar comments. She acknowledged once the test came to light parents found it had been given “for the past three years, time in class had been devoted to this non-curricular controversial piece of paper.”

Zingsheim identified herself as a therapist who works with teenagers every day and she noted “disturbing trends have increased since the advent of social media in 2011. Since cyber bullying began almost 80 percent of teens now report being bullied. Two thirds of these teens have at least one suicide attempt.”

-“What do students need more of? Learning how to respect themselves and others, the value of hard work, addressing students’ anxiety and depression with encouraging words, understanding and compassion.”

-“Middle school students don’t need to discover what they should protest or how they’re different. More than any other time in our history we the adults have to realize how our kids are the same. They’re bullied, anxious, overwhelmed, depressed, and suicidal and as parents and teachers we must turn our attention to what our kids need. It’s time that we take a stand.”

Jen Uelmen, wife of Badger School Principal Dave Uelmen, then spoke about following policies and procedures in the school district.

-“My concern is now this is a nationally-known topic because the proper channels were not followed.”

-“I’m wondering if parents are even concerned about how their negative actions towards the teachers and administration affect their children.”

-“I’m hoping in the future parents will follow the proper channels when addressing teachers and administration in our schools.”

-“Our children are leaders for tomorrow and we need to be modeling our behavior that is respectful and sets a good example.”

Badger Principal Dave Uelmen then spoke to the board and praised his staff. “At Badger we have amazing kids,” he said. “We have great families and very supportive families. I’d like to give a shout out to my staff. Bar none, the best staff in my opinion, we have in West Bend.”

The board also addressed the Privilege Test as a follow up during a Jan. 4 meeting on curriculum and policy.

“It was clear in our meeting last week that board members felt the use of this particular questionnaire was inappropriate and the board was assured that this questionnaire will not be used in any of the district schools,” said Board President Tiffany Larson.

Larson said leadership was also encouraged to review Policy 381 when onboarding new teachers and reviewing policy with current teachers at the start of each school year.

Following the meeting board member Joel Ongert was asked how parents will know administration is following through on this directive.

“Laura Jackson (interim superintendent) assured us that onboarding of new teachers at the beginning of the school year and half way through the school year the principals will be reminding their teachers about the policies we have in place in regards to curriculum, what needs to be approved before something is being used in the classroom,” said Ongert.

Questioned whether there were any ramifications for the teacher who brought in the curriculum that was not approved by the district. Ongert said it was “a personnel matter – but the teachers are taking this hard.”

Exclusive ticket offer for St. Patrick’s Day at the Washington Co. Fair Park

The Washington County Fair Park will be celebrating this St. Patrick’s Day with an indoor concert featuring Irish and Scottish folk tunes and classic pub songs from bands Tallymoore and Ceol Carde. Headlining the event will be U2 Zoo.

The Washington County Fair Park is kicking off the concert with an exclusive ticket offer on WashingtonCountyInsider.com. Mention the local news web page and get your tickets for $8 each, a $2 discount. This offer is good until Jan. 15, 2018.

Updates & tidbits

Election Day is Tuesday, Jan. 16 as two candidates look to fill the seat in the 58th Assembly District. Republican Rick Gundrum won the special primary Dec. 19, describes himself as a “pro-life fiscal conservative.” Democrat Dennis Degenhardt is seeking political office for the first time. Degenhardt promised to focus his efforts in Madison on education, family-sustaining jobs, and affordable health care. Polls open at 7 a.m. on Tuesday and close at 8 p.m.

The new shelter for men and women in Washington County will host a grand opening Tuesday, Feb. 6 from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.  The $1.4 million facility designed by American Construction Services of West Bend is located on Water Street will be called Karl’s Place in honor of Karl Glunz of Richfield.

The Slinger Cub Scout pack is holding its annual Pinewood Derby on Saturday, Jan. 27 from 9 a.m. – noon in the old EVS dealership, 1180 S. Spring Street in Port Washington

Food will be collected for Slinger Food Pantry.

The Knights of Columbus will host a Sheepshead Tournament and Spaghetti Dinner on Saturday, Jan. 20. The card tournament is from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. and dinner is from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. Cost is $9 per person and the event is open to the public. Contact Sandy to reserve your spot. (262) 334-9849 email: manager@thecolumbianhall.com

– The 18th annual Bridal Fair at the Washington County Fair Park is January 28. There will be over 70 vendors on hand with everything from dresses to cakes, wedding venues to entertainment. Tickets: $5 Pre-Sale $6 Day-Of *Children 12 and under are free. Tickets available at the Fair Park office and Amelishan Bridal.

Stop in Saturday, Jan. 27 at Cedar Ridge for the annual Chili Social and Book Sale, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Enjoy a warm, delicious lunch, browse the book sale and take a tour of the independent-living apartments at Cedar Ridge, 113 Cedar Ridge Drive in West Bend.

– Cast Iron Luxury Living has a unique short-term leasing special. The remodeled West Bend Aluminum Company located on the scenic Milwaukee River is offering a month of free rent if you move-in before the end of January 2018. There are one and two-bedroom apartments available. For more information 262.334.7943 or castiron@hendricksgroup.net

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

Remembering Julie Ann Fabrics in West Bend 

Neighbors in West Bend may remember Rosemarie Alf from the old Julie Ann Fabrics store in West Bend.

Alf and her husband Marshall brought the franchise to West Bend in February 1969. “That shop was located at 120 N. Main Street next to a little diner in the old Marth (Centrum) building,” said Helen Baierl who was a partner with her sister. “We did a good business because people came downtown on Friday nights. We did much better than we thought we would that first year,” recalled Baierl as she talked about people lining up at the door when they initially opened.

Both sisters sewed and while Rosemarie’s husband Marshall helped run the store, sharpening scissors and repairing sewing machines, Helen’s husband Donald took care of the book work.

“When the Westfair mall came into town we moved there,” said Baierl remembering others in the mall in 1972 including Nobel Shoe Store, Koehn and Koehn Jewelers and Bits N’ Pieces Floral.

Julie Ann Fabrics carried everything for sewing including name brand patterns like McCall’s, Vogue, Simplicity and Butterick. “We had a lot of the mod stuff,” said Baierl laughing now about the A-line dresses she made ‘out of gaudy prints.’ Baierl also touted the store’s hands on customer service. “If customers couldn’t lay out a pattern they’d bring it in and we’d put it on the table and lay it out.” Baierl said they were so busy she put her four daughters to work dressing manikins. Other employees included Delores Goeden, Joan Fink, Gert Metrish, Kathy Dohman, Laverne Doll, and Delores Koenig.

“We made our daughter’s wedding dresses and prom dresses and I’d even put mine on the manikins and people would ask if they could buy it,” said Baierl who also did tailoring and upholstering.

Jean Falk was 17-years-old when she started working as a clerk at Julie Ann Fabrics from 1974 to 1984. “I did everything from helping customers select fabrics and patterns, to ordering ribbons and trim.”

Falk said the store was always busy. “That was back in the day when you would see families making christening gowns and wool coats and the schools still had very complete home economic programs.” Falk remembered freshmen making peasant blouses out of cotton and seniors who would do completely lined Pendleton suits.

Julie Ann Fabrics quickly developed a ‘full service’ reputation. “It got to the point where we’d walk and talk people through entire projects,” said Falk. “They’d run down to the store and just open a bag and throw it on the counter and go ok we’re at this point, what could we do.” Falk said she inherited her sewing skills from her grandmother and said when she applied for the job sewing was a prerequisite. “I had been a customer from the day they opened to the day I got hired so they knew,” laughed Falk claiming she was ‘in the store all the time.’

“We’d work with teachers, planning their curriculum and then we’d work with students who would come in to buy the stuff for their projects.” Falk reeled off home economics teacher’s names like it was yesterday including Ginny Froehlich from Kewaskum, Mildred Doss from West Bend and Mrs. Carol Stoltz from West Bend.

As far as Rosemarie was concerned, Falk said she was ‘a wonderful lady.’ “I thought it was cute when they said in her obituary she could burn up a motor in a sewing machine long before the warranty and she did, there was nothing she couldn’t make or fix. A lot of times she didn’t even use patterns she’d just start cutting and pinning and wah-lah there’d be an outfit.”

Rosemarie also put her wing around Falk, taking her to the buyers club to pick out fabrics for the seasons and sales reps would ask Falk’s opinion to ‘get a young point of view.’

As far as pay was concerned, Falk doesn’t remember the dollar as much as the discount. “If I made a fall outfit I could have the fabric and pattern and everything for free as long as I display it. So it was more the fringe benefits and the wonderful people I met while working there.”

Falk said all of the employees at Julie Ann Fabrics were encouraged to sew outfits for themselves. “The more stuff we made for ourselves and wore the better it was, because people would always say ‘what pattern number is that dress’ or ‘what pattern number is that skirt’ so we were always pretty fashion trendy,” said Falk who favored working with denim and often envied Rosemarie for her tailoring ability on suits and jackets.

Falk also got to do some modeling. “That meant a lot to me because I knew there was no way I would ever be a New York Ford model but at least I got my hands in it a little bit.”

Julie Ann Fabrics had celery green colored carpeting, the bolts of fabric were neatly organized and there was a little corner in the back of the store for kids to play while women sat at a counter with eight bar-stool- like chairs pouring over pattern books. “It was like a hangout,” said Falk recalling, ‘when we were in the Westfair Mall that was the buzz of the city.’

Often times, Falk remembered Rosemarie sitting across the hall at the Cookie Cone Café. “You’d see Rosie over there with her pattern book and her cup of coffee deciding what she was going to do next,” said Falk painting the picture of a typical afternoon at the mall.

The most hectic time of the year was inventory. “You would have to count yards of trim and yards of ribbon and yards of fabric on bolts,” said Falk about the project that normally occurred on New Years Day. “They’d run a sale in conjunction with that, like a football widow’s sale and get the women in while the men were at home watching football and we’d all be there counting our yards of fabric.”

Falk said the store would also ‘special order covered buttons and belts.’ “If a woman had a velvet jacket and the buttons would be velvet, we’d send them out and have a place cover the buttons and belts with that fabric.” Rosemarie worked a lot with bridal parties. “She’d make some head pieces and veils and she’d help them design bridal gowns and dresses and she knew just what you would line with lace and taffeta.”

Rosemarie was five years older than Helen, who was in her 30s when they started the business. “Marshall worked every day and Rosemarie and I switched off,” said Baierl admitting ‘if I had known how much work it was going to be I probably would have said we don’t want to do this.’

In 1987 Rosemarie and her husband retired and Julie Ann Fabrics was sold to Linda and Eugene Bodden. The store moved out of the Westfair Mall and into the Decorah Shopping Center where the A&P used to be.

Rosemarie Alf was 80 years old. She died last week Thursday August 16, 2007 under the care of the Kathy Hospice. A Memorial Mass was held Monday at St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Pete Rettler has been on the run every day for 24 years

On Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017 Pete Rettler will get together with about 120 friends for a little 5K run. For Rettler it’ll mark 24 years straight he’s run every day in a row.

“I will start my 25th year of not missing a day running on Jan. 1, 2018,” said Rettler.

The idea to run daily started as a bet during a college reunion. “It was me and a guy I wrestled with in college, Phil Scharenbrock,” said Rettler. “We went back to UW-Eau Claire for a wrestling weekend and we were both nearing 200 pounds.”

Well over his game-day college wrestling weight of 126 pounds (and Scharenbrock wrestled at 142) the pair made a resolution to get in shape.

“We vowed we didn’t want to be fat so we would run every single day in 1994,” said Rettler.

The pair lasted one year. “And then Phil quit….like any smart person would, and I’ve just kept it going,” Rettler said.

With a normal routine of running about 2 miles a day Rettler has been able to maintain his weight at 175 pounds.

“A lot of people don’t believe me when I tell them about the streak,” said Rettler. “The thing that drives me a little nuts is when people say they don’t have the time. I’m as busy as anybody else and I’ve been able to find the time whether it’s early in the morning or late at night or at lunch.”

Rettler normally runs at night after work. During the weekend he gets his miles in first thing in the morning and when traveling he may wake up at 3 a.m. to be sure to log his miles.

There are a couple strict Rettler rules about what qualifies as a daily run; it has to be outdoors and the minimum is 1.2 miles. “Over the 24 years I’ve averaged 2.5 miles a day,” he said.

There have been some close calls where the streak could have been in jeopardy. Rettler said during a road trip he waited out some severe thunderstorms before finally risking a quick run at 11:30 p.m. Another memorable event happened when he turned 40 years old.

“We were setting up for the Wildcat wrestling tournament. I collapsed on the mat and thought I was dying. The nurses in the emergency room quickly figured out it was a kidney stone issue,” he said.

Doped up on morphine Rettler with actually diagnosed with two kidney stones. “I was in a lot of pain but asked the doctor if I could run. He wanted to know why and my wife chimed in ‘he’s got this stupid streak,’” said Rettler.

The doctor sided with Rettler and offered one bit of advice. “He just suggested I run while the morphine was still working otherwise I’d be in a lot of pain,” Rettler said.

Over the years Rettler’s 2.5 miler has averaged about 30 minutes; now it takes a little longer. “I used to be able to run an easy 7-minute mile and now I’m at about a 9-minute mile,” he said.

Since the 20th anniversary of Rettler’s run streak he’s been raising money for local scholarships. “I wanted to do something fun and came up with a scholarship idea and invited everybody who ever ran with me in the past to kick in $20 and that’s where it started,” he said.

Over the years Rettler’s has advanced from $150 scholarships to two $500 scholarships. This year he’s hoping to get enough for three $500 scholarships. The criteria on who receives the scholarships is that the person is mainly a high school senior from Washington County

Sunday’s 5K run will consist of two laps around Regner Park starting at 1 p.m. on Silverbrook Drive. There are about 110 people who have preregistered this year. People who would like to contribute can make a check to Moraine Park Foundation/Streak. Early forecast Sunday calls for temps in the single digits.

Several Washington Co. Supervisors to face challengers

There will be several incumbents on the Washington County Board facing challenges come the April 2018 election. All 26 seats on the board are up and some of the highlights include:

-County Board Chairman and District 16 Supervisor Rick Gundrum has filed a notification of non-candidacy. Gundrum took first place in the Dec. 19 primary for Assembly Rep. in District 58. Gundrum has another special election ahead on Jan. 16, 2018 where he will face Democrat Dennis Degenhardt.

-Other supervisors who have filed non-candidacy include Dist. 7 Jeffrey Geib, Dist. 9 Gerald Schultz, Dist. 10 Mike Otten, Dist. 14 Raymond Heidtke, Dist. 23, Daniel Goetz, and Dist. 26 Dawn Eyre.

-Dist. 4 appears to be a popular seat as Mike Miller has filed non-candidacy. Three people have taken out papers and two of the candidates, Chris Jenkins and Randy Koehler, have already turned in nomination papers and valid signatures. Jenkins and Koehler have squared off before in the Dist. 4 on the West Bend Common Council. The third potential candidate is Robert Olson; he ran for Washington County Circuit Court Judge last year against Todd Martens and lost.

– A couple other contested seats include Justice Madl who declared candidacy against Dist. 1 incumbent Kristine Deiss. Madl has also taken out papers to run for the Dist. 7 aldermanic seat in West Bend vs. incumbent alderman Adam Williquette.

-Ralph Hensel has taken out papers in Dist. 3 to face incumbent Christopher Bossert.

-Richard Bertram and Kara Guse have both pulled papers for Dist. 9. Incumbent Gerald Schultz isn’t running.

-William Blanchard has pulled papers to run against Dist. 11 incumbent Michael Parsons. That seat represents the Town of Farmington/Kewaskum area.

-Marcella Bishop and Andrew Jones have both turned in valid signatures and will be vying for the seat in Dist. 14 that’s being vacated by Raymond Heidtke.

-Dist. 20 Supervisor Mark McCune may have a challenger in Ryan Lippert.

Each candidate must turn in a minimum of 50 signatures by Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018.

West Bend businessman files to run for local school board

West Bend resident and business owner Kurt Rebholz submitted his candidacy papers for the West Bend School Board on Thursday morning. Rebholz is the Co-Founder and President of Bay MarketForce, LLC.

According to the company website Rebholz’s areas of expertise include Market Strategy, Business Modeling, Sales Management, Operational Management, Campaign Development, Dashboard Measurements, Sales & Marketing Plan Development, Growth Goals & Forecasting, Recruiting, Employee Development and ROI Marketing.

Rebholz has 20 years experience in sales and operations positions for large and small world class organizations like IBM, Kemper Financial, and The Frantz Group.

At every company he was promoted to numerous leadership and management positions due to sales growth, increasing divisional and company profitability, and streamlining company operations.

Previously, Mr. Rebholz served as Sales Support Specialist, Education Coordinator, Business Development Rep, Market Research Analyst, Controller, General Manager, and 8 years experience as Vice President. In 2005, Mr. Rebholz was honored at the Wisconsin Business & Technology expo winning the 2005 Small Business Times IQ Award for Telecommunications.

Rebholz is the second person to apply for two open seats on the West Bend School Board. Each seat carries a 3-year term. Incumbent Monte Schmiege also filed to run.

Schmiege’s campaign issued a statement: My name is Monte Schmiege. I am a candidate for the West Bend Joint School District #1 School Board.

I struggled with this decision because serving has been a lot of work and very challenging, especially in this last year in which so much has changed, including four new board members and administrative turnover. And the change continues as we try to rebuild.

I did not join the board with any thought to the possibility that I might be the longest serving member of the board with what will soon be three years. I think of the people who preceded me and served six or more years and respect the commitment they made. I think some degree of stability is important, and I have thanked them for their service.

People join the board with little or no idea what the work entails or what legal restraints, such as open meetings law and school finance complexities, exist and need to be learned and navigated. Prospective members sometimes have goals they want to accomplish right away and may be disappointed to find out how hard, and perhaps inadvisable, change is.

I think we’ve seen what damage can occur when too much change happens too fast. Even good change can have negative consequences to the stability of the organization and student outcomes if it cannot be managed and made organic, a delicate balancing act.

As it is, the board faces some big decisions that can only mean more change. Some or all may be decided by the time of the election. The board must hire a new superintendent who can smooth out the waves of change and strengthen or build an effective administrative support team. We still have openings to fill there. The salary framework is under review and likely to be replaced. Capital improvement plans are under way that will likely bring a recommendation for a building referendum. Even though these may be decided by the time of the election or well under way, new challenges will arise, and there are the undercurrents of continuous change, such as policy, curriculum and teaching and learning, which, though they seem of much lesser degree, are of equal or greater importance and significance to student success.

I’ve been just short of three years. I currently serve as treasurer, a post I will have held for two years, thanks to the support of fellow board members. I currently serve as chairman of the policy committee, thanks to appointment by the president. I have worked with members of the finance team and administration and attended workshops to better understand the what, why and how of finances and compensation. I am bringing some new finance reporting and transparency to monthly meetings. I’ve identified areas for improvement in policy. I brought forward policy changes that permit the board, consistent with revised state statute, to have the final decision in the adoption of curriculum.

Yes, I’ve opposed some things, perhaps most notably, the adoption of four-year-old preschool. I studied the matter extensively and independently before the vote. We will never know, other than sentimentally, if there is a positive impact to long-term student success. I opposed it because the very concept that “kindergarten is the new first grade,” which was an argument for 4K as the new kindergarten, is wrong. I have a family member who teaches 5K and bemoans the changes that have taken place at that level in recent years.

I came to the board opposed to Common Core, which was already in place. I opposed the adoption of Engage NY, new Common Core compliant curriculum for English Language Arts, but, at that time, the board did not have to approve curriculum. Furthermore, I would have been in the minority. I don’t seek this office for personal gain or even satisfaction. Few do. Community members recognize my conservative stance and have asked me to run. Without their support, urging and encouragement, I could not.

What are my goals? Stability, Sustainability and Student Success. The district has gone through a great deal of turmoil, especially on the staffing side. We need to establish stability. We anticipate adopting a new compensation plan. It must be financially sustainable. Most of all, we need to focus on student success in the long term, which is a function of many decisions, big and small.

Papers to file candidacy for the West Bend School Board are due by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018. The district office on S. Main Street will be closed the remainder of this year and on Jan. 1, 2018.

Judge Andrew T. Gonring files papers to run in April 2018

Washington County Circuit Court Judge Andrew Gonring has turned in signatures and required paperwork to run for judge in Branch 4 in April 2018. Gonring was first elected on April 4, 2000 to replace retired Judge Leo F. Schlaefer. His current term expires in 2018. Signatures to run for the seat are due Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018.

Skating rink open at Regner Park in West Bend

The frigid temps are good for something as the ice skating rink at Regner Park is now ready to go. The rink opens today, Thursday, Dec. 28 from 12 p.m. – 9 p.m. and the lights will be on weekdays from 5 p.m. -9 p.m.  The warming house will be open Thursday through Sunday.

A bit of history on Regner Park: The warming house at Regner Park is the original bathhouse built in the 1930s during an era when President Franklin D. Roosevelt backed programs like the Civilian Conservation Corps and the Work Projects Administration. The efforts were designed to create jobs to pull the country out of the Great Depression. The WPA developed projects to improve city streets, playgrounds, bridges and public buildings. Regner Park opened in 1935.

Deer Management Plan moving forward in West Bend

A Deer Management Committee meeting is set for Wednesday, Jan. 3 at 5:30 p.m. There were nine bow hunters who participated in the proficiency test and bow hunter exam. The step was part of the process to take part in the public deer hunt set for Jan. 10-14, 2018.

Five hunters passed with a perfect score including Steven Kraker, Brad Zuba, Jeffrey G. Bach and Brad Beck. Following a background check the hunters will be issued nuisance tags.

The city is working with people in the community to try to trim the local deer herd by about 40 bucks and does. City clerk Stephanie Justman said the committee will determine how to move forward with fewer hunters. “There were four districts/zones outlined for the hunt at Lac Lawrann Conservancy and five districts/zones at Ridge Run Park,” she said.

Hunters had to pay $30 to take part in the test.

City administrator Jay Shambeau said the zones may be redesigned to help accommodate the hunters. “The individuals that tested were excited about taking part in the process,” Shambeau said.

The deer taken during the hunt will be donated to local food pantries. Hunters participating in the deer management will get to keep one deer. Shambeau said the DNR will likely cover the cost of processing the deer. He said the expense will not be covered by the hunter nor the city.

The proposed deer management hunt was approved by the Common Council on a 6-1 vote with one amendment to change the number of permits from 20 to 40.

Washington Co. Parks stickers on sale

Beginning January 1, 2018 visitors to Washington County parks listed below will need to purchase a $5 daily pass or $30 annual sticker. Parks include Ackerman’s Grove County Park,

Glacier Hills County Park, Heritage Trails County Park, Homestead Hollow Park, Leonard J. Yahr County Park, and Sandy Knoll County Park.  Each of the parks listed above will have an entrance station where park visitors will be required to take a pass form unless they already have an annual sticker, have pre-paid, have an event code, or are attending a soccer game.  For more information and a complete list of pricing call the Washington County Planning & Parks Office at 262-335-4445 or visit washcoparks.com

Washington County Fair Park to add concert series in 2018

During the recent Agriculture and Industrial Society Board annual meeting at Washington County Fair Park an announcement was made on changes for 2018. Aside from a new look to the Fair Park and Convention Center web page and implementing a new marketing campaign to help spur facility rentals, Kellie Boone, the executive director of the Fair Park, said they were planning to utilize the Silver Lining Amphitheater for more events.

“We’re in the process of looking at several different music events to be held in the next year or two, besides the fair,” she said. The Silver Lining Amphitheater was a gift to the Washington County Fair Park from West Bend Mutual Insurance. It officially opened in 2016.

“From the second I accepted the position I just thought we could do so many cool things at the Amphitheater,” said Boone. “Rather than just using it three days of the year during the annual County Fair, why not use it for multiple concerts throughout the year.”

In 2018 the Fair Park will kick off a one-day music festival. “We’re in talks with a person to run it in a partnership,” said Boone.

Open dates would be either one Saturday in June or in August 2018. “We have two potential dates to block off the grounds,” said Boone. “This will be an outdoor event, it’ll be multiple acts and the idea is to have a couple local bands and then a fair-level national act.”

Boone said July would be off the table at this point because the County Fair takes up a majority of time for staff.

Moving toward more of a music scene at the Fair Park is being done for a couple of reasons including replacing Rummage-A-Rama, which is on hold indefinitely; the strategy would also help showcase the venue. “People know we host weddings and business meetings and conventions but we need to show the parks flexibility and the variety of things we can do with the space available,” she said.

“We talked about doing things like a winter carnival. I’d like to take our signature events, like the Bridal Fair and Holiday Craft Fair, and mix that with more open-to-the-public type of events.

Boone’s proactive approach is already underway as coming up St. Patrick’s Day the Fair Park is hosting an indoor Irish concert. “It’ll be Saturday, March 17 and the tentative plan is to start it after the Erin parade and have a couple different Irish-themed music acts,” Boone said.

Tallymoore, a contemporary Irish Folk band from Milwaukee, has already been booked. More details on the event will be released in the coming weeks.

Updates & tidbits

– After 41 years of dedicated service, West Bend Public Works employees joined together to celebrate Mark Palmer’s retirement from the City of West Bend. Department employees enjoyed a celebratory lunch on Friday, Dec. 15 in Mark’s honor. From a historic perspective, in 1976 when Mark Palmer started working for the city the same year U.S. President Gerald Ford visited West Bend. Ford stayed at the Holiday Inn, 2502 W. Washington St. – currently Pick n’ Save north.

– Cast Iron Luxury Living has a unique short-term leasing special. The remodeled West Bend Aluminum Company located on the scenic Milwaukee River is offering a month of free rent if you move-in before the end of January 2018. There are one and two-bedroom apartments available. For more information 262.334.7943 or castiron@hendricksgroup.net

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

Remembering N. Main Street in West Bend

This is a great history story about West Bend from 2015 with comments by William Kirchner of West Bend. The picture, courtesy Steve Kissinger, looks north on Main Street. City Bakery remained on the corner of Highway 33 and Main Street through the 1970s.

“Gonring’s Tavern was on the corner; I was in that building,” said 96-year-old William Kirchner of West Bend. “The men’s entrance was on the corner and the women’s entrance was on the end of the building because women didn’t go to the bar years ago.”

Kirchner, who made 18-cents an hour when he started work in 1933 at West Bend Aluminum, remembered coming to town as a kid and parking his horse and wagon by a big horse barn on Seventh Avenue. “You could put your horses in that barn, leave your wagon on the street and then go shopping. You’d put whatever you bought in the wagon and go and get a drink if you like and then hitch your horses back up and go home,” he said.

The beer of choice at Gonring’s Tavern was “West Bend Lithia of course,” said Kirchner. “The kids had West Bend soda; either root beer, green river, cream soda or orange.”

Kirchner said the building next to Gonring’s was John Baren’s Hardware, next to that was a harness maker, and then Tessman’s shoe-repair shop and Schnepf tavern.

John Gonring of West Bend also recognized his grandfather Matt Gonring’s Tavern. “Grandpa remodeled it in 1932, moving the barroom to the street level, added a ladies’ entrance to the north, and renovating the second and third floors to very nice living quarters. To the west up the hill was a horse barn. Previous property owner was M.B. Goeden who was Matt’s father-in-law.”

Jerry Mehring also chimed in. “The corner building was Gonring’s Tavern, then Five Old Guys and now the martini place, JP Foz’s, 302 N. Main St. Highway 33 turned west there at the traffic light. A door or two north of the tavern was the Monaco Cafe,” said Mehring.

Janine Matenaer, 77, of West Bend grew up behind the Monaco Café. “That’s the fifth building from the left in the photo; my mom and dad, Walter and Ella Schnepf, ran that and we lived upstairs,” she said. “I’d crawl up on the roof and I had a crush on this guy and he’d come walking down Wilson Avenue and I’d sit up there with my binoculars – oh, he was a lifeguard at the park and I’d spend all my summers out there.”

Matenaer recalled her grandfather Adolph G. Schnepf first had a harness and buggy business, Schnepf Bros., on that block. The Monaco, a restaurant and tavern, later opened in1940s – 1960s. “You went up a couple steps and it was the tavern and you walked straight in and it was the restaurant with an old-time counter and there was a back room and old wooden booths,” recalled Matenaer.

Recognizing the red brick building in the photo, Matenaer flashed back to Baren’s Hardware. “I remember going in there and it was run by Frank Wolf and every time I went in it would smell so hardwarey,” she laughed. Later Landvatter Inc. moved in and sold and fixed radios and black-and-white TVs.

“Next to that was an apartment building with two floors and then next to the third building in the photo was City Bakery and Arnold Kannenberg ran that,” said Matenaer.

The Monaco Café was later torn down when the fire department was built on the corner of Seventh Avenue and Highway 33. Records in the Research Center at the WCHS indicate the corner building in the photo is the Farmer’s Home and M. B. Goeden Saloon. Notice the stop-and-go light and the sign advertising Gonring’s Resort on Big Cedar Lake.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Details on why 4 West Bend teachers resigned last May (warning adult content)

Details are coming out today on a story from May of 2017 when four teachers in the West Bend School District resigned.

At that time, then-Superintendent Erik Olson issued a press release; a portion of which reads:

We wanted to advise you about a change in District staffing at the high schools which may have a short-term impact on the remaining few days of your child’s school year.

Effective today, four of our teachers elected to resign from their positions at West Bend East and West High Schools.

While we understand that the timing of these resignations is not ideal, the District accepted them due to the specific circumstances leading up to the resignations.

Please know that while we wish to be as transparent as possible, due to confidentiality laws and out of respect for the privacy of the educators involved, we are unable to provide further details about the specifics of their resignations.

Local blogger Owen Robinson posted more details on verbatim comments from Google chats sent by the four teachers which were retrieved through an open records request from the West Bend School District. The comments were posted on the district’s Google chats platform. Some of the comments have been posted below.

Calls have been placed to the West Bend Teachers Union and a response will be posted upon receipt. Calls have also been placed to Tiffany Larson, president of the West Bend School Board.

Board member Monte Schmiege responded to questions about the notes between former teachers and how the district addressed the situation.  “The matter was handled fairly,” said Schmiege. “I don’t think they represent the wide body of teachers.”

Laura Jackson, superintendent of teaching and learning in the West Bend School District, was not on staff when the resignation of the teachers occurred. However, she said she believed the situation was handled appropriately.

“In general practice when a situation occurs you gather all the information you need so you can address it properly,” Jackson said. Jackson did not know the timeline when the Google chats by teachers were first discovered by district administration and the time when the teachers resigned.

“Ninety-nine percent of our teachers don’t engage in that,” Jackson said. “We have new staff in place and I would hope this is an oddity and we can make sure it doesn’t happen again because we have really solid hiring practices.”

The teacher resignations were approved by the West Bend School Board on June 12, 2017.

In an attempt to cover how a government body would handle such a situation state Senator Duey Stroebel said “it is now clear former Superintendent Olson handled these inappropriate correspondence correctly.”

“No student, parent or community member should be mocked with explicit language – especially since those using bullying tactics are teachers,” wrote Stroebel.

“Earlier this week, the West Bend Educator’s Association suggested this clear violation of public trust was not handled appropriately. Union teachers need to answer if bullying is OK and how they would have handled the situation.”

Stroebel went on to comment on Thursday’s story about the Privilege Test given to students at Badger Middle School. He called it “a politically-charged survey offered to students.”

“Political agendas must stay out of the classroom,” wrote Stroebel.  “Children must always come first. It is unfortunate the many past achievements made by former board members, administrators and teachers are being shadowed by the lapse of judgment of some teachers.”

A portion of the post from bootsandsabers.com is below.

Here are some examples of how these four teachers discussed their students, parents, and peers. I do have the source documents for these quotes. They are public records. But I’ll leave them off this post in order to not circulate the teachers’ names any more than necessary.

It discussing some petty crime in the parking lot: “It’s all the {expletive] ghetto [expletive] moving up her from Milwaukee to sell their drugs to the idiot kids that live in this town.”

In a discussion over a sexually-explicit book that one of the teachers had their kids read: “[Expletive] it, there are other things parents can complain about. It would just make them look stupid.”

“I hope you’re right! I can’t even blame it on the curriculum!”

In promoting dating techniques to students: “I told them I knew people who internet dated and it worked for them, but high schools promoting it felt weird. It reminded me of how they did a bachelor/bachelorette auction at Brown Deer. That was especially weird because most of the kids were black and it was juuuuust a bit too similar to a slave auction.”

Note the opinion included in the blog posting at bootsandsabers.com is solely that of author Owen Robinson.

West Bend Nativity vandalized – baby Jesus destroyed

West Bend police have found the body and an arm of the baby Jesus figurine after the Amity Rolfs nativity was vandalized sometime between Saturday evening and Sunday morning.

Police found portions of the figurine in the pocket park, Vest Park, across the street from the Old Settler’s Park on N. Main Street in downtown West Bend. Police said the head was missing from the body of the figurine and has not been located.

That nativity setup was handmade in Germany and originally brought to the community in the late 1960’s on special order by brothers Tom and Bob Rolfs.

Anna Jensen, executive director of the Downtown West Bend Association, said she was notified about the missing piece when police knocked at her door at 8 a.m. Sunday.

“That piece was wired to the crib because of concerns it may go missing,” said Jensen. “We didn’t think it would go missing or be tampered with because the park is in the central part of the downtown.”

Questioned whether the rest of the nativity would remain in place through the Christmas holiday, Jensen said that had yet to be discussed. Jensen picked up the remaining sections of the baby Jesus on Monday from West Bend police.

If anyone has information they’re encouraged to call West Bend Police at 262-335-5005 or the Downtown West Bend Association at 262-338-3909.

This is not the first time the nativity has been vandalized but it is the most severe. On a history note in Dec. 3, 2013 the donkey was stolen from the nativity, however it was recovered. The baby Jesus was also stolen sometime in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s however it was found and returned.  There used to be 18 in the set. However a ram was stolen on Nov. 22, 2009; it has never been found nor replaced.

Deer Management Plan moving forward in West Bend

The West Bend Common Council voted 6-1 on Monday night to move forward with its deer management plan. Dist. 8 alderman Roger Kist was the only dissenting vote and Dist. 2 alderman Steve Hutchins absent.

Dist. 1 alderman John Butschlick, who headed the Deer Management Committee, led the discussion about how bow hunters would be tested and then selected in a lottery to participate in a four-day hunt at Lac Lawrann Conservancy and Ridge Run Park.

Butschlick said the committee that organized the details around the local attempt to trim the deer population was extremely thorough, especially when it came to safety.

“There was a lot of discussion about safety and there was a concern if the hunt would occur when the park would be open,” said Butschlick. “It was unanimous to do it when the park would be closed Jan 10 – 14.”

There will be a cost of $30 to local bow hunters who want to participate. A training session will be held Saturday; there will also be a proficiency test and a written test. Those who pass will be entered into a lottery and 40 permits will be distributed.

Only nine people will be selected to participate in the hunt.

Jim White is a member of the Park and Rec Committee and his property is just to the west of Ridge Run Park. White addressed the council to see if they could switch the dates of the hunt.

“My one big concern is how you picked date Jan. 10 – 14 because it’s a Wednesday through Sunday,” he said. “There is a weekend in January and it’s one of the biggest winter activity weekends most notably at Lac Lawrann with a free snowshoe clinic.”

White said Mountain Outfitters owner Kevin Schultz normally donates 150 snowshoes and that’s a free activity. White also noted Ridge Run Park hosts the only premier tobogganing or sledding hill in the community.

“This is when families can enjoy activities. I’m wondering if you can use an alternate date and put it at end of February or the beginning of March,” he asked.

Butschlick noted the DNR won’t cover the cost of processing the meat if the hunt is held after January 31, 2018. Butschlick indicated next year, if the process to trim the herd is needed, the committee would meet with the Park and Rec Department to find open days and make sure there aren’t any conflicts.

Dist. 8 alderman Roger Kist made a motion to deny any hunting in any parks. That motion died after failing to secure a second. Dist. 6 alderman Steve Hoogester questioned why organizers were allowed warm-up shots during the proficiency test. “In my previous life (as a police officer) I never got any warm-up shots,” he said.

Mike Jentsch, with the Parks Department, acknowledged Hoogester had a good question, but…. “This test is not laid out to have people falter or fail. It’s like in hunter’s education, you train to become educated and accelerate and pass the test,” he said. The proposed deer management hunt was approved with one amendment to change the number of permits from 20 to 40.

Monte Schmiege files to run for another term on West Bend School Board

West Bend School Board Treasurer Monte Schmiege filled candidacy papers on Friday, Dec. 22 to run for another term on the West Bend School Board.  Incumbents were required to file notification by Dec. 22.

If elected this would be Schmiege’s second 3-year term. “I’ve started working on things and I need to continue,” he said. “I hate to just throw away things I’ve worked for.”

Schmiege mentioned he put forward a change in policy about a year ago which gives the board the responsibility to adopt curriculum. “Prior to that the board did not adopt curriculum,” said Schmiege. “Looking forward we have to look for a new superintendent, fix the compensation plan, handle the capital improvement projects and those are big things coming up.

“I also think it’s important to have some stability, especially at this time when there’s so much turmoil,” he said.

The deadline to file candidacy is 5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 at the Education Service Center.

There are two seats up in the April 2018 election. Tim Stellmacher was the other candidate up for election and he already filed non-candidacy papers to announce he will not be running. Stellmacher was appointed to the post in May to fill the seat left vacant following the resignation of Therese Seizer.

West Bend School District searching for new superintendent

The West Bend School Board met in closed session Wednesday evening and emerged to take action on accepting the resignation of Superintendent Erik Olson.

Olson was hired in June 2016 and started his position July 1, 2016. Olson replaced Ted Neitzke, who served as the superintendent since 2011.  In 2016 the Board approved a two-year contract for Olson with a salary of $155,000. In 2017 that contract was extended another two years.

There were a couple remaining questions the press release did not address including how the board would handle the remainder of Olson’s contract if it extended to 2019.

Board member Monte Schmiege said that was something he “couldn’t answer right now” and “that agreement hasn’t been finalized.”

If Olson’s contract would be paid out – that would be taxpayer money. Hiring another superintendent will also be done with taxpayer money. The search for the new superintendent is expected to begin after Christmas.

Parents upset about Privilege Test at Badger Middle School

A parent with a child in the West Bend School District contacted police today after a survey was given to 8th graders questioning their sexuality.

“If I walked up to a 13 year old on the street and started asking these questions I’d be put in the back of a squad,” said the parent, who prefers to remain anonymous to protect his child.

The parent noted he called police because “that teacher and that school subjected all these kids to child abuse today. I was told this was a segue into a new lesson plan about civil rights. The part that concerns me is a whole lot of questions have nothing to do with education whatsoever, especially the ones about parent finances.”

The “Privilege Test” was marked “optional” however the parent said the “kids get scored on participation and that goes on their report card.” Plus he noted, “What’s a child to do when the teacher hands it to you during class… if you’re a good kid you’re doing what you’re told.”

The parent said he felt bad because he’s been telling his kids to “listen to the teacher…. but I never thought they’d be asking them this.”

The parent said a couple weeks ago the kids were asked gun questions and if they had guns in the house. “They’re milking our kids for information and to not tell the parents. Even the principal and vice principal had no idea this was being circulated,” he said.

Another parent who saw the survey posted on West Bend Area Buy, Sell, Trade sent this note:

“Today, a class at Badger Middle School in West Bend (unsure of grade level) was given a survey to take (not the Youth Risk Behavior Survey) in class. It’s hard to read, but I blew it up and could read enough of it that it’s understandable why parents are very upset.

I learned about this survey when it was posted on West Bend Area Buy/Sell/Trade to which I belong. This is a screen shot of the survey. Note: The WBSD said they were not going to consider giving out the YRBS until early next year, and then only to the high school students. Again, this is NOT the YRBS. It is titled, “Privilege Survey.”  That’s why parents are going off the rails on this one. They shut the comments off under the post, then removed the post all together. Too late. I have the screen shot now. Talked to a middle school parent who was unaware of any such survey. .

Some of the questions are:

I have never tried to hide my sexuality.

I have never been called a derogatory term for a homosexual.

I never doubted my parents’ acceptance of my sexuality.

I have never been told that I “sound white”

I am always comfortable demonstrating PDA with people I like.

Nobody has tried to “save me” from my religious beliefs.

Lots of sexual, religious, health and parental finances questions.

About 3:30 p.m. a police squad was seen at the school. Principal Dave Uelmen indicated he had no comment and directed all questions to Nancy Kunkler with the West Bend School District.

West Bend police confirmed receiving a call from a parent and said this was a school district issue. School board members refused to comment on the situation; most said they had no idea this occurred.

Below is a letter Uelmen sent to parents at Badger Middle School.

Dear Families,

Badger Middle School English Language Arts students in 8th grade are currently in the module entitled “Working with Evidence: Taking a Stand.” These units utilize Pulitzer Prize-winning novel To Kill a Mockingbird. The learning target of the lesson was, “I can understand the literal and figurative meaning of Atticus’s word choice in the closing speech. I can analyze how Atticus’s closing speech relates to the themes of taking a stand and the Golden Rule.” During the lesson, some classrooms deployed an optional, anonymous survey that was not derived from district curriculum. The survey was part of a follow up activity to discuss privilege as a lead-in to the “Civil Rights and A Mighty Long Way” module. The survey did not, in any way, count as a grade, nor was it viewed by other students or staff.

I am sharing this information because we understand that as parents or guardians, you may have concerns about today’s survey and discussion. Allow me to assure you that the only intent behind this topic of conversation was to connect students’ prior learning with future topics that may arise in the next learning module. Please feel free to contact the Badger Middle School office at 262-335-5455 with any questions. Thank you for supporting our mission of preparing our students for college readiness and career success. Happy holidays. Dave Uelmen Principal Badger Middle School

Rick Gundrum advances in 58th Assembly District Election

The numbers from Tuesday’s Republican primary came in rather quickly after polls closed at 8 p.m. Candidate Rick Gundrum was briefed on a solid win in the Village of Richfield and Village of Slinger and then he received a phone call from fellow candidate Steve Stanek who made an early congratulations to Gundrum on a successful campaign. Gundrum won the primary and will advance to the Jan. 16, 2018 special election to fill the seat left empty following the death of Representative Bob Gannon.

Washington Co. Parks stickers on sale

Beginning January 1, 2018 visitors to Washington County parks listed below will need to purchase a $5 daily pass or $30 annual sticker. Parks include Ackerman’s Grove County Park,

Glacier Hills County Park, Heritage Trails County Park, Homestead Hollow Park, Leonard J. Yahr County Park, and Sandy Knoll County Park.  Each of the parks listed above will have an entrance station where park visitors will be required to take a pass form unless they already have an annual sticker, have pre-paid, have an event code, or are attending a soccer game.  For more information and a complete list of pricing call the Washington County Planning & Parks Office at 262-335-4445 or visit washcoparks.com

Former Walgreens on Decorah and Main sold in West Bend

The building at 806 S. Main Street has been sold. Last Friday, Dec. 15 Kwik Trip closed on the purchase of the former Walgreens for $1.34 million. Coming up this spring Kwik Trip will demolish the building and construct its own store on the southwest corner of Decorah and Main.

Updates & tidbits

– Cast Iron Luxury Living has a unique short-term leasing special. The remodeled West Bend Aluminum Company located on the scenic Milwaukee River is offering a month of free rent if you move-in before the end of the year, 2017. There are one and two-bedroom apartments available. For more information 262.334.7943 or castiron@hendricksgroup.net

– Hartford’s Elisha Jaeke, sophomore biology major at St. Norbert College, will be studying at Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ecuador. Jaeke received a $1,000 study-abroad grant given nationally by the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society.

-The 2018 Washington County Fair will feature four straight days of live music from July 25-28 featuring Saving Savannah, The Now, Bella Cain, and Cherry Pie. The fair is looking to rename its Entertainment Tent. Post your creative suggestions on the Washington County Fair Park Facebook page for a chance to win a 4 pack of tickets to the Fair!

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

Happy 107th birthday to Clara Moll

How often can you say that you sang the “Happy Birthday song” to someone who turned 107 years old.

This week in a cozy farmhouse in Barton, Clara Moll celebrated her 107th birthday. She was born in 1910, right after the coffee filter and paper cups were invented.

“Exercise is what keeps you young,” said Clara. She was making a couple laps in the dining room area. Thick white shoes, long strides and an aluminum walker for balance.

Clara bragged that at 107 she didn’t need glasses but she admitted her hearing was going…. or gone, but it didn’t seem to matter.

At 107 she was still loving life. “I’ve lost my taste buds….,” she said. Her daughter Mary, her primary caretaker, said that had been going on the past few months.

A big wicker basket full of birthday cards sat on the kitchen table. It was surrounded by sweet rolls wrapped in clear plastic bags, daily prayer books, and the latest edition of the Wall Street Journal.

“I’m going to live until 110,” said Clara confidently as she clumped with her walker into the kitchen.

Mary said that declaration can change.  “Most often… we’re just taking it one day at a time.”

Below are some of the articles I’ve written about Clara over the years.

Dec. 18, 2015 – Clara Moll turns 105 and Happy 105th birthday Clara Moll.

“The biggest thing that’s changed on this block is the makeup of the family,” Moll said. “My husband died when he was 74 and he said, ‘Clara you watch, when women all go to work there will be nobody home to cook and there will be nobody home for the kids; you’re going to have hard times.’” Animated, Moll points out the window from house to house to house announcing she has dubbed the block “Divorce Street.”

Clara Moll is a pip! On Sunday, Dec. 18 the life-long Barton gal turned 106 years old. She celebrated with family and friends. Pizza, her favorite, was the supper of choice. We prayed and passed a plate.

Clara reminisced. She was prompted by her daughter Mary. “Remember in 1976 when you took advantage of the Greyhound Bus offer… 99 days for $99?”

Clara remembered. She traveled the U.S. and saw all her relatives. “Don’t get married,” she advised. “Travel.”

Meantime the group at the party tried to recollect where the Greyhound stops were in West Bend; the consensus was on S. Main Street in front of the Centrum building and outside George Webbs in the West Bend Plaza.

Clara touted “exercise” as the secret to longevity.  She wore out roller skates and proclaimed she would “rather dance than eat.” “Wiggle your feet when you’re sitting in a chair,” she said.

At 106 she said she feels fine. “I can read without glasses if it has to be,” she said. “But my hearing is going.”

A single-layer chocolate cake with chocolate frosting is placed on the table. Three separate candles that count out 1 – 0 – 6 stand mighty on top of the chocolate frosting. “Believe it or not that number 6 was a 5 last year,” said Mary. A little wax melting helped morph it.

A rendition of Happy Birthday …. “and many more” filled the warm kitchen of the old farmhouse on Salisbury Road in Barton.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Pizza Ranch in West Bend is hiring

A quick update on Pizza Ranch, 2020 W. Washington Street in West Bend. Since the groundbreaking Nov. 21 at the former Ponderosa location the building has been gutted and the remodel is underway.

“The only wall we will be tearing down is the north wall as we will have a small addition to accommodate our pick-up window,” said owner Stacy Gehring.  “We are hoping for an early 2nd quarter opening, but we will know a more exact date as construction continues.”

On the job front, Pizza Ranch is now accepting applications for an Assistant Manager.  If you know someone who is interested, please apply at www.pizzaranch.com/careers.

Also Pizza Ranch in West Bend has a Facebook page at facebook.com/pizzaranchwestbendwi

Remember the post cards for Lithia Christmas Brew?

In 1940, postcards were sent to neighbors around West Bend announcing, “On Wednesday, December 11, 1940, The Famous Lithia Xmas Brew will be ready for distribution. Best ever — try it — you will like it.”

Different labels were designed for the seasonal beer. One paper label featured a green wreath with holly berries and red bow. Inside the wreath was the familiar Lithia logo, underlined by the words “Christmas Beer” in thick German script.

Other designs featured the words “Holiday Brew” above a profile of Santa, who was bordered by pine branches.

There was the red label special dark Christmas beer and the well known Xmas label with six bearded elves each working to stoke the fire under the vat of beer, or pour hops, stir the mix, tap a pint and test the product.

Lithia’s Christmas beer was available nearly all year long. You could only buy Christmas beer in bottles and you needed an opener to get the cap off. The beer didn’t come in cans and it wasn’t on tap.

Lithia’s Christmas beer was sold by the case at liquor stores and at taverns within the West Bend area. Berres Liquor Mart, Triangle Beverage Mart, The Oasis bar (by Gehl Company); Pat’s Tavern (owned by Pat Pault), Kuhn’s Liquor, Palashes Liquor and Janz Liquormart in Barton were just some of the local distributors.

West Bend Noon Kiwanis makes special donation

An early Christmas for a 10-year-old boy from Green Tree Elementary School in West Bend as the West Bend Noon Kiwanis presented Matthew Stauff with an iPad to help him with his speech therapy.

Kiwanis member Ron Tabat had the honors of presenting the computer to Matthew this week at the West Bend Public Library.

“This has been just a wonderful program and to date the Kiwanis district in Wisconsin and Upper Michigan have given away 929 iPads,” said Tabat.  “The West Bend Noon Kiwanis has given away seven iPads to students at West Bend Schools and one to the Slinger School District.”

Tabat said he has seen a significant impact on giving autistic children iPads.

Matthew’s dad Tom said he learned about the donation from his son’s teachers. “His speech teacher Mrs. Anderson suggested he sign up for the donation of the computer so he can work at home at school and at home,” said Tom Stauff. “This is extremely generous of the Kiwanis. This is going to be a wonderful opportunity to establish his learning a bit further and he’s fortunate to have this experience.”

Honoring Pete Rettler for service on Ag & Industrial Society Board

A nice tribute to Pete Rettler this week as he was recognized by the Agricultural & Industrial Society Board for his nine years of leadership.

Rettler was introduced by Washington County Fair Park executive director Kellie Boone who presented Rettler with a commemorative clock. “We got this for you for all your great leadership and support for AIS,” said Boone.

Rettler then praised his mentors and other volunteers on AIS. “I grew up on a farm in Hartford and always attended the fair in Slinger and I always wanted to come to this one,” he said.

Rettler gave kudos to former Fair Park executive director Sandy Lang and “all the dedicated individuals who spent so much time volunteering” including Ken Miller, Robby Robrahn, Tony Warren, Roger Kist, and Marilyn Merten.

“I’m most proud in this last year when you try to replace Sandy Lang and we had a search committee and we knew we had big shoes to fill and whole AIS owes Kellie Boone a debt of gratitude,” said Rettler. The new incoming AIS president is Tracy Oestreich.

Special Primary Election is Tuesday, Dec. 19

Residents in the 58th Assembly District will head to the polls Tuesday, Dec. 19 for a special Republican primary election to fill the seat left vacant following the death of Assembly Rep. Bob Gannon.

Four Republican candidates are running. Their names are listed in ballot order: Tiffany Koehler, Spencer Zimmerman, Rick Gundrum and Steve Stanek.

Polls open from 7 – 8 p.m.  The special general election is Jan. 16, 2018 when the winner of the Republican primary will face Democrat Dennis Degenhardt.

According to West Bend City Clerk Stephanie Justman there were about five people a day who came to City Hall to vote in-person absentee over the past two weeks. Justman said the early prediction on voter turnout next week is about three to four percent.

The 58th Assembly District includes the communities of Slinger, Jackson, Town of Polk, parts of Richfield, Town of Trenton and West Bend. The term for the seat in the 58th Assembly District expires January 7, 2019.

West Bend School Board has two open seats

As of Friday, Dec. 16, 2017, no one has filed for candidacy for two open positions on the West Bend School Board according to Deb Roensch, executive assistant to the Superintendent in the West Bend School District. School Board member Tim Stellmacher, who was selected in May 2017 to fill a one-year term, did file a non-candidacy form. Stellmacher was named to the board to fill the vacancy after Therese Seizer resigned her seat.

The deadline to file candidacy is 5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 at the Education Service Center.  The deadline for incumbents to file notification of non-candidacy is Friday, Dec. 22 by 5 p.m.

Property tax bills arrive just in time for Christmas

Neighbors across Washington County who went to fetch the mail Monday got their annual property tax statement.

Comparing 2016 to 2017 – Washington County was up 2.3% and Moraine Park Technical College climbed a whopping 4.9%.

The school district and city tax varied depending upon the community you live in. In West Bend the city tax stayed flat and the West Bend School District was down 1.5%.

The lottery-tax credit was $97, which was down from $109 in 2016. The first-dollar credit was $55.43 which is a smidge less than $57.96 last year.

Property assessments in 2017 remained the same in West Bend however there will be a revaluation in 2018. If you pay in installments in West Bend, that first payment is due Jan. 31, 2018.

Washington Co. Parks stickers on sale

Beginning January 1, 2018 visitors to Washington County parks listed below will need to purchase a $5 daily pass or $30 annual sticker. Parks include Ackerman’s Grove County Park,

Glacier Hills County Park, Heritage Trails County Park, Homestead Hollow Park, Leonard J. Yahr County Park, and Sandy Knoll County Park.  Each of the parks listed above will have an entrance station where park visitors will be required to take a pass form unless they already have an annual sticker, have pre-paid, have an event code, or are attending a soccer game. Annual stickers are on sale now. For more information and a complete list of pricing call the Washington County Planning & Parks Office at 262-335-4445 or visit washcoparks.com

Town Tins make a great Christmas gift to encourage shopping local

The Downtown West Bend Association has the one-stop-shop solution to wrap up your Christmas gift giving. The Town Tin features 30 business deals for just $30 and includes $175 worth of savings.

For example Shooting Star Travels features $25 off an all-inclusive vacation value of $1,000 or more, West Bend Tap and Tavern features a free appetizer with purchase of two beverages, Downtown West Bend Association has a coaster for a free beverage at Music on Main.

Many of the offers are graduated offers the more you spend the more you save. Some offers are a percentage off a purchase/service. To pick up your Town Tin contact Anna Jensen at the Downtown West Bend Association, 215 N. Main Street, Suite 109 or call (262) 338-3909.

Updates & tidbits

Elevate, Stop Heroin Now, and the Washington County Heroin Task Force will hold a memorial vigil on Sunday, Dec. 17 at Richfield Fire Station No. 1, 2008 WI-175, from 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

– Cast Iron Luxury Living has a unique short-term leasing special. The remodeled West Bend Aluminum Company located on the scenic Milwaukee River is offering a month of free rent if you move-in before the end of the year, 2017. There are one and two-bedroom apartments available. For more information 262.334.7943 or castiron@hendricksgroup.net

The 2018 Washington County Fair will feature four straight days of live music from July 25-28 featuring Saving Savannah, The Now, Bella Cain, and Cherry Pie. In an effort to follow the likes of the “Do Drop In” and “Why Go By” music stages, the fair is looking to rename its Entertainment Tent. Post your creative suggestions on the Washington County Fair Park Facebook page for a chance to win a 4 pack of tickets to the Fair! The winner will be contacted by Fair Park staff.

-To honor Mother Cabrini and the 100th Anniversary of her death, St. Frances Cabrini is collecting items for the Albrecht Free Clinic whose mission is, “To serve individuals in Washington County who are underinsured, uninsured and otherwise unable to afford medical services.” St. Frances Cabrini Month of Charity runs until Dec. 22.

-Harold W. Groth, born October 30, 1933, died peacefully at his home on Tuesday, December 12, 2017. He was born and raised in Jackson, WI. He was a lifelong dairy farmer. He was past president of the Washington County Farm Bureau, Washington County Supervisor, Town of Polk Supervisor and 4-H Leader. A Memorial Service for Harold will be held Saturday, December 16, 2017 at 1 p.m. at the Phillip Funeral Home Chapel. The Visitation will be at the funeral home on Saturday, Dec. 16 from 10 a.m. until the time of service at 1 p.m..

-The Kettle Moraine Ice Center is hosting Breakfast with Santa on Saturday, Dec. 16 from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Tickets are $8 and include all-you-can-eat pancakes plus a public skate voucher for the 2017-18 season. Children 3 years old and younger eat free.  There will be photos with Santa and letters to Santa will be collected.

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

Note from a Good Samaritan

A Good Samaritan passed the note below following a horrible rollover accident Thursday night around 8:30 p.m. on northbound I41 just north of Pioneer Road.

According to Washington County Sheriff’s a northbound vehicle, driven by an 80-year-old Hartford man began to merge into the slow lane and struck the rear portion of a semi-tractor trailer that was traveling north in the slow lane. The vehicle then lost control and began to roll over prior to coming to rest in slow lane of I41.

The driver of the vehicle suffered serious injuries as a result of the accident and was subsequently transported by Jackson Rescue to Froedtert Hospital. He was not wearing a seatbelt. No one else was injured in the crash.

The Good Samaritan’s note is below.

I wanted to take a minute to tell you about how amazing our community is. Last night there was a rollover accident on northbound I41. I came upon the accident moments after it happened.

There were not any police, fire, or EMS on the scene. I was amazed how many people stopped to help the person in the vehicle. There had to be at least a dozen.

People were helping the victim, directing traffic, holding flashlights, getting the person out of the vehicle, attending to medical needs, calling 911, grabbing first-aid kits from vehicles, trying to contact the driver’s family, getting blankets from cars, etc.

It was truly an amazing sight to see so many bystanders take action to help on a cold, dark, windy winter night.  One of the people attending to the victim was actually driving southbound, saw no EMS on the scene, turned around to come northbound and help with medical needs at the scene. Another person was an EMT off duty. I am a RN.

No doubt that the police, fire, EMS, and I believe flight for life there to take over did an amazing job…but the compassion people showed was incredible!

My winter pet peeve brings trouble… and a creepy guy who won’t go away

Just too embarrassing… so I convinced myself I had to share.

There’s a super pet peeve that comes with winter and I still don’t know why it bothers me so much. Wait a minute, yes I do…. it’s because these snowy, dirty ice clumps collect behind my car tires and then normally choose to selectively fall off on my garage floor.

I can’t TELL you how much that just irks me.

So, the other day I went to check on my parents at Cedar Ridge. As I exited my car I saw the aggravating snow clump clutching tight to the area by the wheel well. A couple swift kicks and I conquered it.

Visit the parents, yahdah yahdah, get in the car, run an errand, dart into the grocery quick and then dash back to my car and sure enough – there’s another large clump of dirty snow ice right behind the tire. Are you serious? I didn’t even go that far.

So I make a beeline for it, kick it with my toe. This one chips off. It’s annoying. I blame the frigid temps and maybe some beet juice the city put on the road. I’m working on it, working on it…. telling myself I have better things to do and dang it’s cold, why does this bother me so much….yahdah, yahdah…

Then…. over my shoulder I notice this guy. He’s creepy. Kinda walking in my direction and looking at me. I figure I’ve probably interviewed him before – even though I totally don’t recognize him.

He’s got the look that I get in Walmart. People look at me and smile. I figure they follow the Insider.

I give the ice chunk a back kick with my heel. One last stab. I look up and the guy is right there. Like right there. It’s a little startling.

“Hi there!” I said.  He says “Hi.” Gruff. Direct.

“Can I help you with something,” I asked, really super friendly… even though he’s totally creeping me out.

“That’s my car,” he said dryly.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

A prank from heaven… courtesy Bob Gannon

West Bend business owner Jacci Gambucci shared a story during Sunrise Rotary about a recent incident at Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport.

During the security check Gambucci was pulled aside by TSA. Several other TSA arrived, talked in hushed voices, and then turned her over to the Milwaukee County Sheriff.  Gambucci thought she got busted for a pocketknife until the Sheriff told her otherwise. “It looks like you have ammunition in your purse,” said the Sheriff’s deputy.

“But I don’t even own a gun,” said Gambucci. Then it hit her. “It’s Bob!”…as in former state Assembly Rep. Bob Gannon.

A bit of the back story: Following Gannon’s untimely death, his remains were cremated and his wife Kris filled spent bullets with his ashes. Gannon was a big advocate of gun rights and this way his friends could have a piece of Bob to remember him by.

Gambucci received one of the bullets at a Rotary meeting, dropped it in her purse, and there it stayed.  “I could just hear Bob’s big laugh in my head,” said Gambucci. “He would love how ridiculous this situation was and the trouble he caused. It seemed like a prank from heaven.” The Sheriff eventually told Gambucci she could have “Bob” back since the TSA agents believed her story.

“Who could possibly make that up,” she said.

The next conundrum was what to do with Bob since she had to fly back from Atlanta the next day. Throwing the bullet away was not an option, out of respect, but Gambucci told the story at a business dinner that night and a client thought it was great and offered to keep Bob on her desk.

Since Bob loved publicity Gambucci thought it was a great idea, so as soon as she got back to the hotel she sent links that were “All about Bob” so the bullets new owner would have the appropriate back story of who Bob was.

Another Rotary member offered Gambucci his bullet, but she refused for the time being.  “I am flying to Florida for the Orange Bowl and don’t want to risk a repeat,” she said.

Neighbor in Town of Addison calls Washington Co. Sheriff about wolf in his yard

Washington County Sheriff’s got a call Saturday morning about a wolf in a field on William Tell Drive in the Town of Addison. “The homeowner said they thought they saw a wolf,” said Deputy Brian Herbst.  “It was out in the farm field behind their house; it was just lying in the field.”

Deputy Herbst and the homeowner approached it and got within 75 yards and the animal ran off. After it got about 100 yards away it turned around and laid down again.

“We stood and watched a bit, my sergeant came out and said ‘Yup… looks like a wolf.’ We approached it to make sure it wasn’t hurt and it moved away again and then it laid down,” Herbst said.

The homeowner said he had seen a wolf before in his field, about a year or two prior. Herbst said he too had seen wolf but “never down this far.” Herbst contacted the DNR but all of them were busy that morning.

Warden Joe Jerich did follow up and talked to the Deputy on scene. “I asked if he could approach the animal to see if it was injured and then it ran off,” said Jerich.  “We want to give him a chance to survive if he can and if it was injured we’ve have to make a decision how to handle it.”

Currently nobody from the DNR has seen the wolf. Both Deputy Herbst and the land owner said it was much larger than a coyote, even if it would have been a coyote with its fur primed out.

“Wolves could show up in this county but it’s highly unlikely,” said Jerich.  “Their range is generally to the north but coyotes are really common in this county and when their fur is primed out in this weather they look a lot bigger.

Deputy Herbst said the homeowner found wolf scat in his yard. “I haven’t had any other calls,” said Jerich. “We’ll have to see if it turns up again.”

UW-WC Ambassadors and Foundation Board honors Jeff Szukalski

Jeff Szukalski, owner of Jeff’s Spirits on Main, was honored by the UW-Washington County Ambassadors and the UW-WC Foundation Board for his generosity to UW-WC.

In presenting the gift, Joan Rudnitzki, thanked Jeff for his support and many kindnesses. “It was a great honor,” said Szukalski. “This is a great college and foundation and they do great things for the community and the kids. I’m happy to support the college.”

Szukalski said his love of the community is what prompts him to give back. “It’s just a great place to be and a great place to grow up and connect with friends,” said Szukalski. “Being involved is just the right thing to do.” The presentation was made during the annual holiday get together for faculty and staff at UW-WC sponsored by the Ambassador Council with support from the Schlegel Foundation.

West Bend listed in 30 Best Small Cities

We’re number 24! We’re number 24! Travelalot.com has come out with a list of the top 30 best small cities in the United States and the city of West Bend is listed No. 24.

The qualifications for the ranking reads: “Big, crowded cities don’t have a monopoly on cultural offerings. If you’re looking to visit (or move to) a place that flows to a slower pace and has a lower cost of living, these towns under 100,000 residents still have plenty to cool things to do.”

The copy reads: “Riverfront Parkway lines the Milwaukee River in sections just north of the downtown area and the path is dotted with sculptures. On the other side of the river the Eisenbahn State Trail stretches north and south for a total of 25 miles. Those aren’t bad offerings for a southeastern Wisconsin town about an hour outside of a major economic center.”

On Facebook neighbors chimed in on what they thought made West Bend one of the TOP best small cities in the U.S. Some of the answers included the Downtown West Bend Farmers’ Market, locally-owned restaurants, MOWA, and the Kettle Moraine Symphony.

Deer Management committee outlines plan to hunt in parks

The Deer Management Committee met for the first time Tuesday night at City Hall in West Bend to outline some of the parameters in its Urban Deer Management Plan.

Members of the committee included Dist. 1 alderman John Butschlick, Paul Schleif, Chris Dymale, Larry Polenski, Joanne Kline, Duane Farrand, Michael Jentsch and Dist. 2 alderman Steve Hutchins.

In November the West Bend Common Council approved a resolution to allow hunting in two city parks under strict rules that must still be approved by Council. The hunting measure is designed to help manage the deer herd in the city.

The resolution detailed several suggestions and the Deer Management Committee addressed a 14-page packet of guidelines. Only adult bow hunters who pass a proficiency test would be allowed to hunt during a four day time span in January 2018. The only parks where this will be allowed as a test is Lac Lawrann Conservancy and Ridge Run Park. The parks will be closed during the four-day hunt, January 10-14, 2018. Written exam and proficiency test/shooting test as established by the committee. Hunters will only get one shot at a proficiency test. Individual must score 100% on Bow hunter Exam.  Fees will be set yearly with City Council

Some of the issues the committee addressed several times was that safety will be a top priority, this will be a lottery system and six people will receive permits. The participants must stay in their assigned zones. The guidelines drafted by the Deer Management Committee must still be approved by the Common Council. That review will most likely occur at the Dec. 18 meeting.

Albrecht Free Clinic unveils $50,000 matching grants

A big announcement from the Albrecht Free Clinic, 908 W. Washington Street in West Bend, as it unveils $50,000 matching grants from Aurora Health Care and Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin.

According to Ruth Henkle, executive director with the Albrecht Free Clinic, Froedtert and Aurora, have agreed to underwrite a challenge grant as each will provide a $50,000 match.

“As a result, each dollar raised will result in three dollars in funding for our community healthcare services,” said Henkle. “If the rest of us rise to the challenge and contribute $50,000, we’ll generate $150,000 more to continue and expand our mission.”

The Albrecht Free Clinic provides access to basic, quality medical care through the generosity, caring and compassion of volunteers and donors.

Neighbors will receive a mailing from the clinic this weekend that details its medical, dental and behavioral health services and how it has seen a 46 percent increase this past year.

Over $86,000 was recently raised during a matching campaign with the Thomas J. Rolfs Family Foundation.

Carrie Killoran, executive vice president – central region, Aurora Health Care said Aurora Medical Center in Washington County has a long-standing relationship with the Albrecht Free Clinic.

“Aurora Medical Center remains committed through volunteerism and service delivery,” wrote Killoran. “We are especially proud to be a part of this very important initiative to help secure the future of the Albrecht Free Clinic so that they can continue to serve those in need.  Their work aligns perfectly with Aurora’s purpose to help each other live well.”

Henkle said the organization would not be able to exist without the support from both Aurora and Froedtert.

“The majority of our volunteer medical providers come to us from both healthcare systems,” she said. “In addition, they support the care of our patients through a voucher program so our patients can receive labs, X-rays and specialty care they need that we do not provide at our clinic.

“We also send our patients to their pharmacies for medications.  There are many additional things both systems do to support our operation. We have a wonderful partnership with Aurora and Froedtert and they truly value us as a safety net for the uninsured medical population living at 200 percent or below the federal poverty level.”

Donations can be made between now and January 31, 2018 to take advantage of the opportunity to triple your impact by participating in the Aurora/Froedtert challenge grant.

Candidate forum for 58th Assembly District is Wednesday, Dec. 13

There is a special primary election Dec. 19 as four Republicans are running to advance to the special election Jan. 26, 2018 to fill the vacant seat in the 58th Assembly District.

On Wednesday, Dec. 13 Common Sense Citizens of Washington County will host a candidate forum at the West Bend Moose Lodge at 7 p.m.  Candidates include: Tiffany Koehler, Spencer Zimmerman, Rick Gundrum, and Steve Stanek.

Candidates will introduce themselves and then all four will be asked the same questions.

Candidates will be encouraged to stay after the forum to greet the audience and answer individual questions.

In-person absentee voting is already underway. It will run until 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 15.

The 58th Assembly District includes the communities of Slinger, Jackson, Town of Polk, parts of Richfield, Town of Trenton and West Bend.

The seat in the 58th became vacant following the unexpected death of Rep. Bob Gannon. His term expires January 7, 2019.

West Bend School Board has two open seats

As of Friday, Dec. 8, 2017, no one has filed for candidacy or non-candidacy for two open positions on the West Bend School Board according to Deb Roensch, executive assistant to the Superintendent in the West Bend School District. The deadline for filing for candidacy is 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 at the Education Service Center.  The deadline for incumbents to file notification of non-candidacy is Friday, Dec. 22 by 5 p.m.

Rezoning West Bend Brewery property

This week the West Bend Plan Commission voted to rezone land on N. Main Street that includes the old West Bend Brewery building along with the strip of other properties to the north.

Bob Bach from P2 Development is planning on razing the buildings for a 99 unit, three-story apartment building. Local businesses that would be affected include RT’s Speed Shop, Ray’s Shoes, Pruett’s Floor Covering, Casa Guadalupe and the cleaning-supply shop on the far north end.  The rezoning would affect 2.65 acres of land 445-485 N. Main Street. The zoning was changed from General Business and Warehouse to Mixed Use District.

Washington Co. Parks stickers on sale

Beginning January 1, 2018 visitors to Washington County parks listed below will need to purchase a $5 daily pass or $30 annual sticker. Parks include Ackerman’s Grove County Park,

Glacier Hills County Park, Heritage Trails County Park, Homestead Hollow Park, Leonard J. Yahr County Park, and Sandy Knoll County Park. Park visitors will have three methods of payment and have up to seven days from the date of their visit to pay, much like a highway toll system. Each of the parks listed above will have an entrance station where park visitors will be required to take a pass form unless they already have an annual sticker, have pre-paid, have an event code, or are attending a soccer game. Annual stickers are on sale now. For more information and a complete list of pricing call the Washington County Planning & Parks Office at 262-335-4445 or visit washcoparks.com

Updates & tidbits

-Join the Festge family as it hosts a Grand Opening Celebration at Rally Time Sports Bar & Grill, 1373 N. Main Street. The celebration runs 11 a.m. – close.

-To honor Mother Cabrini and the 100th Anniversary of her death, St. Frances Cabrini is collecting items for the Albrecht Free Clinic whose mission is, “To serve individuals in Washington County who are underinsured, uninsured and otherwise unable to afford medical services.” St. Frances Cabrini Month of Charity runs until Dec. 22.

  Bob’s Main Street Auto and Towing is collecting toys and money for Family Promise of Washington County’s Christmas Event. This event will help give local, needy children the Christmas they deserve. With a donation the shop is giving a free tire rotation or a set of free wiper blades (max $32 value) with any service. If you are looking to donate toys or help contribute feel free to stop by either of their locations or give a call at 262-338-3670.

-The Kettle Moraine Ice Center is hosting Breakfast with Santa on Saturday, Dec. 18 from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Tickets are $8 and include all-you-can-eat pancakes plus a public skate voucher for the 2017-18 season. Children 3 years old and younger eat free.  There will be photos with Santa and letters to Santa will be collected.

 -Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

-Winter on Main in downtown West Bend will be held the next two Fridays in the Downtown West Bend business district. Shop local DIVA businesses, dine at your favorite restaurant and explore Historic Downtown West Bend from 5 p.m. 7 p.m.

-The Kettle Moraine EAA Chapter 1158 Breakfast with Santa is Saturday, Dec. 9 at West Bend Municipal Airport, 310 Aerial Drive. Come have breakfast and watch Santa arrive in a helicopter. Breakfast is 7 a.m. – 11 a.m.  No cost to see Santa. $6 per person for breakfast, children under 4 eat free.

-The Annual Hartford Historical Home Tours is Saturday, Dec. 9 from noon – 3 p.m. Four Historical Homes featured including: George Kissel Home – 215 E. Sumner Street, Charles Uber Home – 505 E. Sumner Street, Louis Kissel Home – 407 East Sumner Street and Adolph Laubenstein Home – 203 Church Street. $15 per person and tickets available through The Schauer Arts Center

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Parent bothered by sex questions on Youth Risk Survey

 The West Bend School Board voted 5 – 2 this week in favor of a Youth Risk Behavior Survey.

Prior to the presentation and board vote, parent Mary Weigand addressed the school board and challenged them to “do the right thing.”

Some of Weigand’s comments are below:

“I’m a registered nurse and …. we don’t need a survey to know kids are involved in risky behaviors.”

“I’m concerned about very leading questions – ‘How old were you when you had sexual intercourse for the first time?’ How would you feel if you were asked that question? ‘During your life how many people have you had sexual intercourse with?'”

“Which of the following best describes you: transgender, heterosexual, bisexual, not sure?’ What does this have to do with educating our children?”

“I’m very concerned about offending students and offending parents. I know that parents have to sign off on this but just the thought that this is being brought forth in our schools.”

Later in the meeting Sharon Kailas, Pupil Services Director/ Head Start Director addressed the school board with parent Michelle Simpson who was in favor of the survey.

Parent Michelle Simpson spoke briefly about her family and how it has been affected by risky youth behavior.  Some of Simpson’s comments are below.

“Abigail attended West Bend East for four years and came from a wonderful family and she’s lived greatly and we thought we did everything right…

“She had great grades and was a member of the varsity volleyball team …. and has a gentle soul and she also developed addiction.”

“The Youth Risk Behavior Survey does address a number of risky behaviors, sexual relations or behaviors is one and there are questions about that but there are a slew of other questions about a number of other risky behaviors.”

“I asked my son about it, would you answer questions about this  … he said, ‘Mom, kids will just lie.’ Yes some will, many will. But some of the questions they may not. Do you feel anxious in school? There are kids that could benefit from a lot of assistance if we can identify them earlier.”

The School Board asked several questions prior to voting on the survey.

-“We will only be using this at the high school,” said Kailas.

-“You can apply for grants… and this can bring money into the county,” said Simpson. “If we don’t have data, real data, numbers that say what the problem is in our county you cannot receive money, you just won’t get it because they say ‘how do you know you have a problem.'”

-The survey was presented by Well Washington County.

The West Bend School Board voted 5-2 in favor of the survey. Yes votes: Joel Ongert, Nancy Justman, Tiffany Larson, Tonnie Schmidt, Tim Stellmacher.  No votes: Monte Schmiege, Ken Schmidt

According to the Washington County Health Department all public schools in Washington County voted to approve administering the Youth Risk Behavior Survey to students in their respective school districts.

West Bend has an opt-in policy where parents need to sign and approve their child take the survey. Many of the school districts have an opt-out policy, meaning the students will take the survey unless the parents write in and request their child not take the survey. In West Bend the survey will be administered in spring.

Car crashes into utility pole and rolls into Big Cedar Lake

 Washington County Sheriff’s responded to a vehicle in Big Cedar Lake on Thursday night. According to the Sheriff the northbound vehicle was on Highway 144 just south of Highway K, the driver lost control, struck the utility pole and continued into Big Cedar Lake.

The vehicle did not become completely submerged. The driver, who was not wearing a seat belt, managed to escape on his own and climb to safety. The man told authorities he believed he was in the Oconomowoc area and actually had gone into the Rock River.

The accident happened at 11:21 p.m. The 65-year-old man is from Concord, WI and will be cited for first offense OWI.

Public hearing Tuesday to rezone West Bend Brewery property

There will be a public hearing on Tuesday, Dec. 5 regarding a request to rezone land on N. Main Street that includes the old West Bend Brewery building along with the strip of other properties to the north.

Bob Bach from P2 Development is planning on razing the buildings for a 99 unit, three-story apartment building. Local businesses that would be affected include RT’s Speed Shop, Ray’s Shoes, Pruett’s Floor Covering, Casa Guadalupe and the cleaning-supply shop on the far north end.

During the November Plan Commission meeting Bach unveiled some preliminary drawings of street-level apartments that had a “row-house feel;” upper level apartments would have balconies.

Some local business leaders are asking whether Bach could redesign his proposal to include retail on the first level and apartments above.  Bach has said, “Commercial is pretty tough to do and it would command a pretty high rent.”

The rezoning would affect 2.65 acres of land 445-485 N. Main Street. The request would change from General Business and Warehouse to Mixed Use District. The meeting starts at 6 p.m.

Homeless shelter set to open in February 2018

Construction on Karl’s Place, a homeless shelter on Water Street in West Bend, is moving along smoothly according to American Construction Services of West Bend.

The groundbreaking on the $1.4 million project was Sept. 5.  According to Todd Weyker, vice president of operations at American Construction Services, the project is expected to be completed in February 2018.

“Years ago we recognized our ultimate goal was permanent housing to eliminate homeless,” said West Bend Police Chief Ken Meuler.  “Through this emergency shelter we’ll be able to offer support services and transitional living.”

Family Promise of Washington County will be the owner and operator of the facility which will house up to 18 men and women with six supportive housing apartments.  The shelter will be staffed 24 hours a day and will address the needs of the individuals and assist them with access to food and shelter and assistance to gain employment and manage money.

The facility is called Karl’s Place in honor of Karl Glunz of Richfield who has been a member of St. Vincent De Paul for 52 years.

“There is a need in Washington County for homeless singles, women and men,” said Glunz. “We’ve experience the need over the past four to five years and now we have the opportunity to provide them one building, for both men and women, with all the services they need to work themselves toward independent living.”

Katie Carrier inducted into Hall of Fame

Former West Bend East High School volleyball player Katie Carrier Astrauskas has been inducted into the St. Norbert College Athletics Hall of Fame. Carrier Astrauskas was a 2002 graduate of St. Norbert in De Pere and a four-year letter winner in women’s volleyball.

She is in her eighth season as head coach of the Ripon College volleyball team and ranks third in program history for career victories (89). She has led the Red Hawks to a 36-31 record in conference play and has coached two players to MWC Player of the Year honors.

Santa Ramp Up helps Cycling without Age                                         By Jeff Puetz

Some generous bicyclists during Sunday’s Santa Ramp Up in West Bend as participants donated $275.50 to Bike Friendly West Bend for the Cycling without Age program. Combined with donations from the West Bend Mutual Insurance Co. Bike to Work program a bicycle rickshaw will be purchased for the Cycling without Age program at Samaritan Health Center.

Bike Friendly West Bend and Samaritan Health Center collaborated on a grant application to the West Bend Community Foundation and was awarded $7,000 to fund the Cycling without Age program at Samaritan Health Center.

The committee consists of members from Bike Friendly West Bend, Washington / Ozaukee Health Department, Samaritan residents and family members. The committee will leverage the work done in other Cycling without Age programs to develop routes, rules, guidelines, schedules, destinations, etc.

Bicycle Friendly West Bend expects to kick off the program in May of 2018 with a celebration at Samaritan and the first official rickshaw rides. Excess funds will be used in accordance with Bicycle Friendly funding priorities. The next Cycling without Age meeting is Dec. 13.

Enchanted Raffle winners

On Friday, Nov. 24 the West Bend Sunrise Rotary held its Enchanted Raffle at Regner Park. Winners of the $1,000 prize were L. Nimmer from Colgate, Phyllis Schaefer of West Bend, and Tim Britton of Waterloo, WI. The $5,000 grand prize winner was Menter from Havenwood Court in Jackson. The Rotary winner of the $200 prize was Lori Yahr.

In-person absentee voting starts Monday, Dec. 4

Residents in the 58th Assembly District can begin voting in-person absentee on Monday, Dec. 4. This is the Republican primary for the special election to fill the seat left vacant following the death of Assembly Rep. Bob Gannon.

Four Republican candidates are running for the post. Their names are listed in ballot order: Tiffany Koehler, Spencer Zimmerman, Rick Gundrum and Steve Stanek. The primary is Dec. 19 and the special general election is Jan. 16, 2018 when the winner of the Republican primary will face Democrat Dennis Degenhardt.

In-person absentee voting can be done at the front counter in the clerk’s office in Slinger, Jackson, and West Bend City Hall, 1115 S. Main Street. The clerk’s office is open weekdays from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

If you’re looking to vote in the town it’s best to call the clerk for their hours as that’s a part-time position. The 58th Assembly District includes the communities of Slinger, Jackson, Town of Polk, parts of Richfield, Town of Trenton and West Bend.

The term for the seat in the 58th Assembly District expires January 7, 2019.

Largest crowd ever for West Bend Christmas Parade

 Scores of families sat on blankets and folding chairs and lined Main Street last Sunday, Nov. 26 for the annual West Bend Christmas Parade. Organizers said it was the biggest turnout in the 65-year history of the parade. Children were delighted with colorful floats, rousing marching bands, and brilliant dance troupes and participants. Parade winners by category include:

Business: 1st place  –  West Bend Water Utility, 2nd place –  Cost Cutters, 3rd Place  –  Lifestar Ambulance

Youth: 1st place  –  Helping Hands Healing Hooves, 2nd place –  Faith United Church of Christ

Adult: 1st place  – West Bend Kettle Trailblazers, 2nd place – West Bend Moose Lodge, 3rd place –  tie – West Bend Children’s Theatre and Kohlsville Cruisers

Updates & tidbits

-To honor Mother Cabrini and the 100th Anniversary of her death, St. Frances Cabrini is collecting items for the Albrecht Free Clinic whose mission is, “To serve individuals in Washington County who are underinsured, uninsured and otherwise unable to afford medical services.” St. Frances Cabrini Month of Charity is Nov. 13 – Dec. 22.

– Adam Gitter has been named the new Economic Development Manager for the city of West Bend. Gitter is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh where he earned a Master’s of Public Administration. He also has an Associate’s Degree from UW-Washington County and a Bachelor’s of Criminal Justice from UW-Oshkosh. “Adam has solid relationship-building skills and will be a great asset to our community. He grew up in this area and currently resides in West Bend,” said City Administrator Jay Shambeau. Gitter is a veteran having served in the U.S. Army as Military Police with one tour supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

  Bob’s Main Street Auto and Towing is collecting toys and money for Family Promise of Washington County’s Christmas Event. This event will help give local, needy children the Christmas they deserve. With a donation the shop is giving a free tire rotation or a set of free wiper blades (max $32 value) with any service. If you are looking to donate toys or help contribute feel free to stop by either of their locations or give a call at 262-338-3670.

-The American Legion Post 36 of West Bend will again sponsor the “Cards for Veterans” program at the West Bend Memorial Library. From now through Friday, Dec. 15, patrons visiting the library will find a display of Christmas and holiday cards. All are encouraged to select a card, write a message to a veteran, and place the sealed cards in the box provided.  There is no cost for this service. On Dec. 15, the cards will be distributed to veterans living in the West Bend area. Donations of cards would be greatly appreciated.

– Enchantment in the Park at Regner Park in West Bend is open. The annual light show collects money and food donations for food pantries across Washington County and Menomonee Falls. Husar’s Diamond Dash is Sunday, Dec. 3.

-The Kettle Moraine Ice Center is hosting Breakfast with Santa on Saturday, Dec. 18 from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Tickets are $8 and include all-you-can-eat pancakes plus a public skate voucher for the 2017-18 season. Children 3 years old and younger eat free.  There will be photos with Santa and letters to Santa will be collected.

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

– There will be a traditional tree lighting Tuesday, Dec. 5 at Berndt Park in Hartford.

-Winter on Main in downtown West Bend will be held the next three Fridays in the Downtown West Bend business district. Shop local DIVA businesses, dine at your favorite restaurant and explore Historic Downtown West Bend from 5 p.m. 7 p.m.

-Washington County Humane Society Festival of Trees is Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3 at the Washington County Humane Society, 3650 State Road 60 in Slinger. Walk though an enchanted forest of Christmas trees decorated by area businesses. 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Adults are $7 and adults over 60 and children under 12 are $5

-Breakfast with Santa presented by the Slinger-Allenton Rotary is Saturday, Dec 2 from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. at the Slinger High School cafeteria. The cost is $5 and children 5 and under are free

-The Kettle Moraine EAA Chapter 1158 Breakfast with Santa is Saturday, Dec. 9 at West Bend Municipal Airport, 310 Aerial Drive. Come have breakfast and watch Santa arrive in a helicopter. Breakfast is 7 a.m. – 11 a.m.  No cost to see Santa. $6 per person for breakfast, children under 4 eat free.

-The Annual Hartford Historical Home Tours is Saturday, Dec. 9 from noon – 3 p.m. Four Historical Homes featured including: George Kissel Home – 215 E. Sumner Street, Charles Uber Home – 505 E. Sumner Street, Louis Kissel Home – 407 East Sumner Street and Adolph Laubenstein Home – 203 Church Street. $15 per person and tickets available through The Schauer Arts Center

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

New location for Amity Nativity and then tragedy strikes

Two years in a row and volunteers lucked out and found a pleasant late-November day to put up the old Amity Rolfs nativity.

The pieces were handmade in Germany and originally brought to the community in the late 1960s on special order by brothers Tom and Bob Rolfs.

For years the nativity was displayed on Highway 33 on the front lawn of the Amity Outlet. In 2007 the nativity was donated to the Downtown West Bend Association and on Monday morning four volunteers spent time delicately putting the pieces in place at their new home under the gazebo in Old Settler’s Park on N. Main Street.

The Downtown West Bend Association is renting the park for the Christmas season. Along with the nativity there are white, swirly Christmas trees that look straight out of a Dr. Seuss story. The park will also be the focal point for entertainment during the upcoming Winter on Main events on Friday in December.

As is tradition, the volunteers hoisted a toast of Guinness to former West Bend Alderman Tom O’Meara who spent years setting up the nativity.

A big thanks to several local businesses that helped make the nativity possible including West Bend Elevator, Meadowbrook Pumpkin Farm and Stein’s Garden & Gifts. The nativity was looking fantastic and then the wind whisked through overnight and upended one of the wise men, knocking off not only the crown… but his whole head.

After some reactionary mourning a trip was made to the Museum of Wisconsin Art and it appears the wonderful Gus Peter will be coming to the rescue. Watch for a mended wise man to rejoin his crew in the coming weeks.

Repairs to be made at railroad crossing on Hwy 60 in Jackson

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) is working with Canadian National Railway to have a new rail crossing installed across WIS 60, (Main Street) just east of Center Street, in the Village of Jackson in Washington County. In addition to the new crossing, crews will also improve the approach pavement on the roadway.

To perform this work, crews require a 48-hour full closure to be in effect from Tuesday, Nov. 28 at 7 a.m., until Thursday, Nov. 30 at 7 a.m.  Please note this work is weather dependent and subject to change. The crossing on Highway 60, especially if a motorist is eastbound, is rather dicey. There’s a pretty significant gap right before the track. Some motorists have been known to swing far to the right … almost to the sidewalk.

If you recall in March 2016, neighbors in Allenton experienced a similar situation that took nearly a year to resolve. Detours will be posted using County Highway G, County Highway NN and County Highway P to direct motorists around the closure.

 New accounting firm opens in Jackson

A new accounting firm with a couple familiar faces has opened in Jackson.  Schensema CPA, Inc. combines the accounting expertise of Adam Schensema, 42, and his wife Michelle, 41.

The pair have nearly 40 years of combined accounting experience and they are growing their new business off Highway 60 with solid standards of trust and accountability.

“It’s the trusted relationships and the personal service,” said Michelle. “We’re very timely and prompt in getting back to people and we realize we’re working on sensitive information and they want to know it’s confidential.”

Schensema CPA caters to small businesses and offers the full gamut of tax accounting including payroll, tax planning, and advising clients by helping them plan properly for retirement and the future.

“If it’s a $275 personal return or a $10,000 business client – we value them equally and we have a great relationship with all of them,” Michelle said.

The Schensemas’ graduated from Marian University of Wisconsin in Fond du Lac. Michelle attended West Bend East High School. “The year 2018 marks my 20th year as an accountant,” she said Michelle.

Adam is originally from Canada. “I actually came to the Fond du Lac area to extend my hockey career,” he said. “Now I run the adult leagues at the Kettle Moraine Ice Center. I think it’s a hidden gem in Washington County.”

The Schensemas’ have three children; their oldest is a junior at West Bend East High School and two children are at St. Frances Cabrini.

Schensema CPA, Inc. opened the end of October at W227 N16867 Tillie Lake Court, Suite 101. (It’s the big three-story building to the northeast of Subway).

“This location in Jackson is really centrally located for us because we have clients in Washington, Ozaukee, Milwaukee County and elsewhere,” said Michelle. “The size of the building also gives us room to grow.”

“We’ve worked with a lot of our clients for a long time so we have a good, solid foundation,” said Adam.

In a letter to clients the couple wrote: It has been our honor to build a trusted relationship with you over the years. We look forward to continuing that relationship as we work to meet your future accounting, tax, payroll, planning, and advisory service needs.  We remain dedicated to providing you with the personal, high-quality service you’ve come to expect with us.

We will be in contact shortly to discuss your immediate needs and a smooth transition, but please don’t hesitate to call if you have questions now. We invite you to stop by the new Schensema CPA, Inc. office. We look forward to working with you soon.

 Bob’s Main Street Auto and Towing makes donation to breast cancer research

Bob’s Main Street Auto and Towing in West Bend, along with 131 independent auto repair shops across 35 states spent the month of October raising funds for a breast cancer vaccine as part of the Brakes for Breast fundraiser.

Bob’s Main Street Auto and Towing raised $2,535.13. One hundred percent was donated directly to research.

With this fundraiser, auto repair facilities give away free brake pads or shoes. This year the brake pads were provided by Advanced Auto Parts in West Bend. This means the customer simply paid the labor and any other necessary parts to complete the brake job. Additionally, the shop donated 10 percent of the brake job to the Clinic. The money raised goes directly to Dr. Vincent Tuohy and the Cleveland Clinic Breast Cancer Vaccine Research Fund.

Without the continued support from customers, their recent fundraisers like Brakes for Breasts and Back to School with the Boys and Girls Club of Washington County would never have been as successful. Bob’s Main Street Auto and Towing’s current campaign is to collect toys and raise money to go toward the Family Promise of Washington County’s Christmas Event.

This event will help give local, needy children in the area the Christmas they deserve. With a donation, in return, the shop is giving a free tire rotation or a set of free wiper blades (max $32 value) with any service. If you are looking to donate toys or help contribute feel free to stop by either of their locations or give them a call at 262-338-3670.

 Snowmobile safety course is at Riverside Park

  Attention snowmobilers if you are 12 years old or born after January 1, 1985 it is required to have a snowmobile safety course. There is one in West Bend at Riverside Park, 700 Kilbourn Avenue on Nov. 28, 29, 30 from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. You must attend all three nights. The cost is $10 per student and sign up by contacting Pat Groth at (414) 517-1594. More information can be found on the Wisconsin DNR website.

 Cards for Veterans at West Bend Memorial Library

The American Legion Post 36 of West Bend will again sponsor the “Cards for Veterans” program at the West Bend Memorial Library. From now through Friday, Dec. 15, patrons visiting the library will find a display of Christmas and holiday cards. All are encouraged to select a card, write a message to a veteran, and place the sealed cards in the box provided.  There is no cost for this service. On Dec. 15, the cards will be distributed to veterans living in the West Bend area. Donations of cards would be greatly appreciated.

Five candidates in the mix to fill Assembly District 58

Five candidates will vie to fill the vacant seat in the 58th Assembly District. Republican candidates include (in order of filing) Steve Stanek, Tiffany Koehler, Spencer Zimmerman, and this week Washington County Board Chairman and Village of Slinger Trustee Rick Gundrum threw his hat in the mix. Dennis Degenhardt is running as a Democrat. A socialist candidate was denied by the Wisconsin Election Commission for not filing the appropriate paperwork on deadline.  Gov. Walker set a primary for Dec. 19, 2017. The Special Election will be held Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018. The 58th Assembly District includes the communities of Slinger, Jackson, Town of Polk, parts of Richfield, Town of Trenton and West Bend. The seat in the 58th became vacant following the unexpected death of Rep. Bob Gannon. His term expires January 7, 2019.

Post Office in Hartford celebrates new lobby hours

Community leaders in Hartford held an intimate gathering Tuesday morning at the Hartford Post Office to celebrate a new era in efficiency. The post office, 45 E. Wisconsin Street, will now have its lobby open 24-7. Access to postal blue collection boxes remains the same. Retail hours at the facility are currently from Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. -5 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

“Post Office Boxes are as secure as mailboxes but provide more flexibility for mail pickup,” said Postmaster Diane Jones. “The convenience of earlier mail delivery is helpful to small business owners. Post Office Boxes provide home-based businesses with the ability to separate business and personal mail.”

Update & tidbits

A special commemoration will be presented to the local VFW program on Thursday, Nov. 30. Across this state, a number of Burger King Restaurants raised money for a VFW program called ‘Unmet Needs.’  Collectively in the 2016 campaign, the franchise raised over $71,000 for that program.  The Burger King in West Bend also participated and a plaque will be presented this week at 8:30 a.m.             

Charles O’Meara and Rev. Eric Kirkegaard were recently elected to the Cedar Community Board of Directors.

– Enchantment in the Park at Regner Park in West Bend is open. The annual light show collects money and food donations for food pantries across Washington County and Menomonee Falls. Husar’s Diamond Dash is Sunday, Dec. 3.

-The Kettle Moraine Ice Center is hosting Breakfast with Santa on Saturday, Dec. 18 from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Tickets are $8 and include all-you-can-eat pancakes plus a public skate voucher for the 2017-18 season. Children 3 years old and younger eat free.  There will be photos with Santa and letters to Santa will be collected.

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

– There will be a traditional tree lighting Tuesday, Dec. 5 at Berndt Park in Hartford and the much loved Annual Hartford Historical Home Tours are set for Saturday, Dec. 9.

-Winter on Main in downtown West Bend starts Friday, Dec. 1 in the Downtown West Bend business district Shop local DIVA businesses, dine at your favorite restaurant and explore Historic Downtown West Bend. Winter on Main is the first four Fridays in December from 5 p.m. 7 p.m.

-Washington County Humane Society Festival of Trees is Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3 at the Washington County Humane Society, 3650 State Road 60 in Slinger. Walk though an enchanted forest of Christmas trees decorated by area businesses. Time is 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Adults are $7 and adults over 60 and children under 12 are $5

-Breakfast with Santa presented by the Slinger-Allenton Rotary is Saturday, Dec 2 from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. at the Slinger High School cafeteria. There will be face painting, stories with Mrs. Claus, Carolers at 10am, and pictures with Santa. The cost is $5 and children 5 and under are free

-The Kettle Moraine EAA Chapter 1158 Breakfast with Santa is Saturday, Dec. 9 at West Bend Municipal Airport, 310 Aerial Drive. Come have breakfast and watch Santa arrive in a helicopter. Breakfast is 7 a.m. – 11 a.m.  No cost to see Santa. $6 per person for breakfast, children under 4 eat free.

-The Annual Hartford Historical Home Tours is Saturday, Dec. 9 from noon – 3 p.m. Four Historical Homes featured including: George Kissel Home – 215 E. Sumner Street, Charles Uber Home – 505 E. Sumner Street, Louis Kissel Home – 407 East Sumner Street and Adolph Laubenstein Home – 203 Church Street. $15 per person and tickets available through The Schauer Arts Center

– West Bend Police Honor Guard were on hand to post the colors at the swearing in of the Honorable Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Annette Ziegler on Tuesday, November 21, 2017.

– The annual VFW Essay contest is underway. The Patriot’s Pen Contest is for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  The theme is “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The Grand Prize is $5,000.  The Voice of Democracy Contest is for all high school students.  The theme is “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” The Grand Prize is a $30,000 scholarship.

Memories of Shopping for Christmas in West Bend

It was an era before Mayfair Mall and the Bay Shore Town Center. It was even before the Westfair Mall and the West Bend Outlet Mall which included stores like The Cookie Jar, Knit Pikker Factory Outlet, Uncle Wonderful’s Ice Cream Parlor, and Rainbow Fashions.

“We shopped downtown because there wasn’t anything on Paradise,” said Jerry Wolf. “The city ended by Badger, which was the high school at the time.”

Wolf was about 10 years old in 1945; he recalled there were three grocery stores downtown including a Red Owl at 138 N. Main St. Jeklin’s Shoes was on the corner of Main and Cedar Streets and just south of that was a hardware store called Gambles.

Cherrie Ziegler Catlin remembered the F.W. Woolworths downtown. “It was a haven for all sorts of trinkets that kept kids busy spending their allowance each week,” she said.

Bonnie Brown Rock remembered Carbon’s IGA grocery on Main Street as well as Naab’s Food & Locker Service. “My parents bought sides of beef which were kept in a freezer at Naab’s store,” said Brown. The business was at 432 S. Main St.

“Dad also went there to get ice cream cake roll on Sundays as our refrigerator didn’t have a freezer,” she said.

Former Washington County Board Chairman Ken Miller remembered Saturday nights were for shopping in West Bend.

“That was in the late 1930s and early 1940s,” said Miller. “J.C. Penny’s was one of the stops for dry goods and the unique thing about the early Penny’s was the cashier was upstairs in a loft. The clerk would put money in a kind of cup, attach it to a ‘trolley’ affair and pull the handle sending the trolley, cup and money to the cashier who in turn would put the change in the apparatus and send it back.”

Parking, recalled Miller, was a problem. Main Street was originally Highway 45 and shoppers parked parallel to the curb, not at an angle as it is today.

“Tight quarters meant shoppers would double park, that meant side by side,” said Miller. “This caused some problems but was later accepted. I believe there was a time limit as to how long one could double park.”

Other unique downtown shopping standards, according to Miller, were grocery stores did not have aisles and display racks, because the grocer got the items from behind the counter. Almost all transactions were in cash as credit cards were nonexistent and checks were few.

“On rare occasions after shopping we would pick up my grandpa and go to Sam Moser’s tavern (currently Muggles) for chili, maybe a hamburger and a small glass of beer,” said Miller. “Yes, beer was OK for kids as soda was not good for you.”

During high school, Miller said Dewey’s Drug Store was the popular hangout. “It was known for its cherry Coke and the Colonial Restaurant for hamburgers,” he said.

Brown Rock also remembered Dewey’s. “They had booths and Mr. Dewey didn’t like the kids to get too loud,” she said. “I don’t remember spending much time there however I had many after school hot-fudge sundaes at the Parkette.”

Todd Tennies, of Tennies Ace Hardware, said the impact the memories people have of shopping 50 years ago in downtown West Bend is still a big part of the community today.

Connie Willer said, “I loved growing up in West Bend! My favorite Christmas memories have to be the Nativity in front of Amity and midnight Mass at St. Mary’s. Mr. Class would play “The Little Drummer Boy” and “Do You Hear What I Hear” on the marimba; it was unforgettable.”

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Fond memories at St. Joseph’s Hospital reunion

 The 19th annual St. Joseph’s Hospital reunion was held recently at the Top of the Ridge at Cedar Community. Over 100 former and current employees attended to share stories and memories of the old community hospital on Silverbrook and Oak Street.

Barb Shier was a registered nurse at St. Joseph’s Hospital for 38 years. She recalled the days of the “hometown hospital” were you “knew your coworker’s families.”

Shier remembered Jim Phillips, from Phillips Funeral Home, driving the ambulance. “Ambulance rides when we would transfer patients were always dramatic,” she said.

There was also winters when the helicopter would land.

“When the helicopters would come pick up the patients we didn’t have a helicopter pad so the maintenance men would plow the parking lot and they would make sure it stayed clear until the chopper landed,” said Shier. “We’d put on our coats and push the gurney through the parking lot and that was the beginning of a new trend.” Shier retired in May 2014.

Rex Melius was born at St. Joseph’s Hospital and was a patient twice in the 1950s. “I remember the Roy Rogers themed rooms. I also remember a certain nun who would come visit the children with her pet parakeets. They’d be on her shoulders or flying down the hall following her into our rooms. Great story…”

Molly Erickson was a clinical educator at St. Joe’s and Linda Jansen was a RN in 1982. The pair recollected some of their favorite memories working at the local hospital including sightings of ghosts.

“After the patients were in a rehab situation they would be transferred to the sub-acute area and many of the nuns stayed there,” said Erickson. “Patients or visitors would say ‘I saw a nun down the hallway in their whole garb but there were no nuns in the building anymore.”

“My husband, Al Jansen, worked in housekeeping and maintenance and he would tell me stories of various things the nuns and their communion wines,” said Jansen. “There was only one nun there when I was working.”

There was also the time in October 2000 when nurse Karen Pufahl had Washington County prisoner Thomas Ball as a patient.

“He ran out naked and ran across the street and stole a car,” said Jansen.

“Then the hospital gave us lessons on ‘you have no business tackling a patient,’” said Erickson. “And they installed safety buttons to alert authorities. We were instructed to direct people to the nearest exit.”

Ball escaped the hospital and stole a vehicle from a woman in the area of Silverbrook Drive. Ball drove to Cedarburg where he crashed the car and fled into a field. He was shot in the bare butt by authorities.

One of the most familiar faces at the hospital was Sue McCullough; she held many positions during her 44 years at St. Joe’s. She started as a staff nurse in 1971 and also worked as a physician and administration liaison.

McCullough remembered Christmas parties where staff brought potluck and performed skits.

There were charity bowling and softball games between hospital staff and police or local media.

“We were the Hospital Hot Handlers vs. the Mighty Media Men,” she said. “Myself and a couple nurses were the cheerleaders and we wore our duty shoes and nurses hats and white sweatshirts with big red crosses.”

McCullough also remembered certain things about the old, old part of the hospital.

“At the original old building the ambulance entrance was on the basement level and the emergency room was on the third floor,” she said. “They would page 777 and that meant somebody had to go down to the basement to meet the ambulance and take them up to the ER.

“As a young nurse, having to go down to that creepy basement. There were always rescue squad guys to help us.”

St. Joe’s, according to McCullough, also had a lot of firsts. “I was reading the instruction manual on how to use an external pacemaker while the doctor was inserting it,” she said. “It was our first time using but it was successful and the patient did well.”

“I know Dr. Richard Gibson had to make things because we didn’t have all the equipment,” she said. “We had to sharpen needles back then too. It was about two years after I started they got disposable needles.”

McCullough also recalled Sr. Frieda who didn’t have much faith in her. “She thought I was too young to work on her unit and she had me folding rags and sharpening needles for most of my shift even though I took care of the cardiac monitors on my floor,” she said.

During a speech to Rotary, McCullough described St. Joe’s as a hidden jewel.” It’s constantly evolving,” she said. “It’s state of the art with the biggest advances in safety and infection control.”

Evidenced by the turnout at the reunion McCullough said, “The bottom line is we liked each other. We helped each other out and rallied if anybody needed us for anything – whether in the hospital or personal.”

Sale price for Ponderosa and groundbreaking set for Pizza Ranch

Groundbreaking is Tuesday, Nov. 21 at noon for the new Pizza Ranch, 2020 W. Washington Street in West Bend.  Matt and Stacy Gehring purchased the old Ponderosa and they will begin to remodel and add to the building with the hope of being open in March/April 2018.

Steve Kilian sold the property to the Gehrings for $850,000. Kilian purchased the property Oct. 24, 2011 for $920,700. Prior to that D. Putz had purchased it in 2009 for $920,689.

Deer hunting approved in two city parks in West Bend

The West Bend Common Council voted 5 – 2 Monday night with one alderman absent (Dist. 2 Steve Hutchins) approving a resolution to allow hunting in two city parks under strict rules that must still be approved by Council.

The hunting measure is designed to help manage the deer herd in the city. The resolution below details how only adult bow hunters who pass a proficiency test will be allowed to hunt during a four day time span in January 2018.

The only parks where this will be allowed as a test is Lac Lawrann Conservancy and Ridge Run Park. The deer committee still has to come back to the council with official rules on the effort.

The two aldermen voting against the resolution include Dist. 4 alderman Chris Jenkins and Dist. 8 aldermen Roger Kist.

DEER MANAGEMENT WITHIN THE CITY OF WEST BEND 2017-2018 COMMON COUNCIL

A Resolution Establishing Nuisance Hunt and Deer Management Committee within the City of West Bend

WHEREAS, the City of West Bend has determined there to be an over-population of deer within the City, and

WHEREAS, the City has determined that the over-population of deer constitutes a nuisance endangering the safety and property of the citizens of West Bend, and

WHEREAS, the City has considered a variety of mitigation tactics for the deer population.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Common Council of the City of West Bend, Washington County, Wisconsin, as follows:

  1. City shall allow a limited regulated nuisance hunt on the conditions established herein to mitigate the deer population of the City.
  2. City shall apply for 20 nuisance permits through the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to be used during the period of January 10th to January 14th, 2018 in the following parks: Lac Lawrann Conservancy and Ridge Run Park.
  3. The Deer Management Committee shall be established to manage and regulate the hunt. The Committee shall consist of eight (8) members serving on a year-to-year basis appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Common Council. Members shall have expertise relating to hunting and/or the parks system and need not be a citizen of West Bend. The Mayor appoints and Council approves the following initial members of the Committee: Steve Hutchins, John Butschlick, Paul Schleif, Chris Dymale, Larry Polenski, Joanne Kline, Duane Farrand and Michael Jentsch.
  4. All hunters shall be adult citizens of the City and shall pass a proficiency test established by the Committee. Upon passage of the proficiency test, hunters shall be entered into a random lottery for hunting locations and permits.
  5. The Committee shall determine the specific hunting locations within each park. One randomly selected hunter shall be assigned to each designated location in the Committee’s discretion. The Committee may also randomly select alternate hunters to be assigned in the Committee’s discretion.
  6. Baiting shall be allowed for two weeks prior to the hunt as allowed by the rules and regulations established by the Committee.
  7. Each hunter shall be issued nuisance permits for the designated location. The hunter may bow hunt or crossbow hunt for deer from a tree stand. All shots taken shall have a downward trajectory.
  8. Each hunter shall notify the West Bend Police Department prior to entering the stand location and upon leaving the stand location.
  9. The Committee shall be responsible for determining safety regulations for the hunt, including but not limited to, closing a portion or all of a designated park to the public for the duration of the hunt.
  10. Hunters may keep one deer. All other harvested deer shall be donated to local food pantries through Wisconsin DNR’s established program.
  11. All rules established by the Committee shall be in full compliance with state and federal law, the Municipal Code of the City of West Bend, and the terms and conditions contained in this Resolution.
  12. Violation of any rule established herein or by the Committee may result in lifetime revocation of all future hunting privileges or other civil or criminal liability.
  13. This Resolution shall be reviewed by the Common Council prior to the commencement of the 2018-2019 hunting season.

Passed and Approved the 13th day of November, 2017

Cards for Veterans at West Bend Memorial Library

The American Legion Post 36 of West Bend will again sponsor the “Cards for Veterans” program at the West Bend Memorial Library. From Monday, Nov. 20 through Friday, Dec. 15, patrons visiting the library will find a display of Christmas and holiday cards. All are encouraged to select a card, write a message to a veteran, and place the sealed cards in the box provided.  There is no cost for this service. On Dec. 15, the cards will be distributed to veterans living in the West Bend area. Donations of cards would be greatly appreciated.

Six candidates in the mix to fill Assembly District 58

Six candidates have now filed information with the Wisconsin Ethics Commission to run in the upcoming Special Election to fill the vacant seat in the 58th Assembly District.

Republican candidates include (in order of filing) Steve Stanek, Tiffany Koehler, Spencer Zimmerman, and this week Washington County Board Chairman and Village of Slinger Trustee Rick Gundrum threw his hat in the mix.

Two other candidates include Dennis Degenhardt who is running as a Democrat and Christopher Lewis Cook who is with the Independent, Socialist Party.

All candidates must collect between 200 – 400 signatures. Nomination papers are due no later than 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017 in the offices of the Wisconsin Elections Commission.

Gov. Walker set a primary for Dec. 19, 2017. The Special Election will be held Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018. The 58th Assembly District includes the communities of Slinger, Jackson, Town of Polk, parts of Richfield, Town of Trenton and West Bend. The seat in the 58th became vacant following the unexpected death of Rep. Bob Gannon. His term expires January 7, 2019.

It’s beginning to look at lot like Christmas in Downtown West Bend

The West Bend Christmas Parade is Sunday, Nov. 26 and early Thursday morning volunteers from the DIVA group, Downtown West Bend Association and the city of West Bend spent a couple hours decorating the downtown Main Street for the holiday.

Brilliant red bows and green wreaths were strung across the roadway and white lights and red ribbons were hung on the lampposts. A big thanks to Brian Culligan at West Bend Tap and Tavern and Hankerson’s Country Oven Bakery for the hot coffee and fuel after the morning effort. Many hands made for quick work. Now mark your calendar for Sunday, Nov. 26 and the annual West Bend Christmas Parade. This year’s theme is Christmas Memories.

Testing the lights at Enchantment in the Park

There were nine volunteers hoofing around Regner Park on Wednesday night, bracing against the wind and taking notes as Mike Phillips led a turning-on-the-lights tour of Enchantment in the Park. “Now this key, the longest key in the bunch, opens this door,” he said.

Phillips was wearing a headlamp – something he recommended for the job. “Flip the switches with the blue tape,” Phillips said. “This will obviously be much faster because you can make these rounds in the car.”

The group walked in the dark from one segment of the display to the next. Through the warming house and down into the bowels of the Strachota stage. It smelled musty and old and looked like a bomb shelter. It was awesome!

Enchantment in the Park at Regner Park in West Bend kicks off Friday, Nov. 24. The annual light show collects money and food donations for food pantries across Washington County and Menomonee Falls. Be sure to make note – the popular Disney night is Thursday, Dec. 7. Husar’s Diamond Dash is Sunday, Dec. 3.

Update & tidbits             

– The celebrity bell ringer for the Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign is Tinker the miniature horse. He and owners Carol and Jim Tackes will at the Washington County Fair Park today, Nov. 18, from noon – 2 p.m. The miniature horse is one of the more popular attractions for the Salvation Army. Donations will be collected through Christmas Eve. The goal this year is $3.8 million and all money raised stays local.

– Moonlighting in Barton will be ringing in the holidays with a Black Friday Meat Raffle on Nov. 24. There will be a raffle every 15 minutes between 2 p.m. – 5 p.m. Lake States Vending will be donating all the meat and proceeds will go to the Gingerbread House, a local organization in its 18th year of providing Christmas gifts to families across Washington County. Stop in and check out the Black Friday Meat Raffle at Moonlighting, 326 Commerce Street in Barton.

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

-Contractors in fluorescent yellow jackets and hardhats can be seen pouring cement and working on scaffolding as the $3.2 million expansion is underway at Good Shepherd Lutheran, 777 S. Indiana Avenue in West Bend. The expansion will include four additional school classrooms and renovated bathrooms. There’s also going to be a new welcome center and gathering space.

– The 3rd Annual West Bend Santa Ramp-up kicks off at 10 a.m. at Dublin’s on Sunday, Nov. 26. Get your red on and join the ride. Other stops include King Pin Bowl & Ale House (11 a.m.), Moonlighting (12 p.m.), West Bend Tap and Tavern (1 p.m.), and The Norbert (2 p.m.). Santa or Christmas attire recommended. Safe biking practices! Come out and kick off the holiday season at one or all the stops!

– There will be a traditional tree lighting Tuesday, Dec. 5 at Berndt Park in Hartford and the much loved Annual Hartford Historical Home Tours are set for Saturday, Dec. 9.

Buy your ticket today from the West Bend Sunrise Rotary and have a chance at a $5,000 grand prize. Drawing is Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. at Enchantment in the Park. Tickets available at Jeff’s Spirits on Main, Pleasant Valley Tennis & Fitness and any Sunrise Rotary member.

– The annual VFW Essay contest is underway. The Patriot’s Pen Contest is for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  The theme is “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The Grand Prize is $5,000.  The Voice of Democracy Contest is for all high school students.  The theme is “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” The Grand Prize is a $30,000 scholarship.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Ponderosa has finally sold and Pizza Ranch is coming

It’s been quite the saga for Matt and Stacy Gehring regarding development of a Pizza Ranch in West Bend but on Tuesday, Oct. 31 the couple signed on the dotted line… several times, and bought the future home of Pizza Ranch.

The Gehrings closed on the deal with Steve Kilian and purchased the former Ponderosa building, 2020 W. Washington Street.

“Finally, huh?” said Stacy Gehring. “We were pretty relieved at the closing… it really felt like crunch time. We just had to wait for all the drawings and for permits to get finalized and we’re hoping to break ground the end of November or beginning of December.”

Stacy guesstimates construction will take about three to four months and they’re hoping to be open sometime in March 2018.  “As long as things go well through the winter,” she said.

The general contractor on the job will be Maple Creek Construction from Columbus, Wisconsin.

“We can only use three walls and the steel roof trusses otherwise everything will be brand new,” said Stacy. “We’re also going to do a little addition to the back.”

Neighbors in West Bend and even city officials have been eagerly awaiting the start of construction on the new locally-owned restaurant.

“There’s no limit to the amount of congratulations we can give you and hopefully this is the one that makes it happen,” said Mayor Kraig Sadownikow during the August common council meeting.

Kilian confirmed during a phone call Tuesday evening they closed on the sale of the building.

“The time it took to sell the building was just normal business,” said Kilian. “I had other potential buyers but they were direct competitors; I’m happy about the Pizza Ranch. The Gehrings are good people.”

Kilian owns the McDonald’s restaurant that’s within a stone’s throw of the new Pizza Ranch property. Watch for a ground breaking in the next few weeks and for trucks to be on site for the remodel later this month. A groundbreaking will be held Tuesday, Nov. 21 at noon at 2005 W. Washington Street.

Filling the seat in Assembly District 58

Within moments of Gov. Scott Walker calling for a special election to fill the vacant seat in the 58th Assembly District, local businessman Steven J. Stanek announced his candidacy for the Wisconsin State Legislature.

Governor Walker called a special election to fill the 58th Assembly District seat after Rep. Bob Gannon passed away unexpectedly last month.

Stanek, a Republican from West Bend, said he became motivated to run after meeting with residents, business leaders, and community leaders throughout Washington County.

“I will fight hard for fiscal responsibility and a smarter, leaner government like the previous representatives of this district,” said Stanek. “I am eager to continue the legacy of strong, trustworthy, conservative leadership.”

Stanek said he will emphasize “active leadership and accountability” to guide his priorities in the Wisconsin State Assembly.

Stanek and his wife, Linda, live in West Bend where they are raising three teenage children. As a business owner Stanek has experience in budgeting, negotiation, finance, compromise, and leadership.

Stanek’s current and past community service includes West Bend Sunrise Rotary Club Board, Holy Angels Parish Council, Holy Angels School Board Liaison, City of West Bend Value Task Force, Kettle Moraine YMCA youth athletics volunteer, Slinger Gridiron Football Club board member, Slinger Hoops Youth Basketball Coach, founding member of the Washington County Kings Baseball Club, West Bend Little League Coach, Washington County Boys and Girls Club Basketball Coach, West Bend East High School Assistant JV Basketball Coach, and West Bend RUSH Lacrosse Board Member.

Assembly District 58 includes the city of West Bend, the village of Slinger, and the village of Richfield in Washington County.

A formal announcement is also set for Monday, Nov. 6 as Tiffany Koehler is expected to set into the ring as a candidate for the open seat in the 58th Assembly District.

For the past 11 months Koehler has served as the policy advisor and legislative aide to Rep. Bob Gannon. The seat in the 58th Assembly District opened last month following the untimely death of Rep. Gannon.

Earlier this week Gov. Scott Walker called for a special election to fill the post. A primary will be held Dec. 19 and the election is set for Jan. 16, 2018.  In 2014 Koehler came in second to Gannon in a three-way Republican primary. Candidates must collect 200 signatures which are due Nov. 21.

A moment of silence in Madison for Rep. Bob Gannon

A moment of silence this week at the State Capitol in Madison as the Wisconsin State Assembly recognized Rep. Bob Gannon (R-West Bend). The moment was broadcast live on wiseye.org just after 1:15 p.m. Wednesday.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said, “Bob we remember for his big heart, his even bigger passion for politics, he will be remembered as a successful business owner, a community leader,  someone who came to this place for all the right reasons…. he didn’t come for the money, he didn’t come for the fame… even though he got a little.

“He did come because he cared and he wanted to truly show the best of what Wisconsin is. Unfortunately this teaches us all a lesson that no matter what age you are we should live life every day because you never know when it’s your turn to meet your maker. If we can all please rise for a moment a silence to remember one of our former colleagues who passed away too young.”

Rep. Bob Gannon died unexpectedly Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017. Following the moment of silence Rep. Jason Fields offered a couple of words and a prayer with Rep. Gannon in mind.

Breakfast with a veteran at Hartford Union High School

Hartford Union High School (HUHS) is hosting a free Veterans Breakfast on Monday, Nov. 13, 2017 from 7:15 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. to commemorate all those who served our country. All Hartford area veterans are cordially invited to attend the event, which includes a cooked breakfast, music, and a keynote speaker.

The courtesy of an RSVP is requested by November 8. Veterans can RSVP for this free event by calling Julie Buser, Superintendent’s Assistant, at (262) 670-3200, extension 209; emailing julie.buser@huhs.org; or by visiting goo.gl/3E6udt.

Students in HUHS’s Leadership and Project Management class are the primary hosts of the breakfast, which is designed to offer thanks and pay respect to those in our area who have served in any branch of the US Armed Forces, either in wartime or peacetime.

“This is an excellent opportunity for the school community and members of the community at large to come together, break bread, and say thanks,” said Dr. Attila J. Weninger, Superintendent of HUHS. “We are especially pleased to honor our local veterans, whose service and sacrifice make our way of life possible.”

The Leadership and Project Management class at HUHS will greet the attending veterans and visit with them during breakfast. High school teachers and staff who are veterans, along with members of the administrative team and the School Board, will also be in attendance.

The HUHS band will perform music appropriate to the occasion, and a keynote speaker, School Board President and veteran Joshua Schoemann, will offer brief remarks to welcome the veterans and express appreciation for their service and commitment.

Celebrating 60 years at St. Frances Cabrini School

With great pride the 60th-anniversary memory quilt was unveiled during St. Frances Cabrini’s Sunday celebration.

Some of the talented ladies that assembled the quilt included LaVerne Doll, Nancy and Angie Ruplinger, Judy Peters, Arlene Doll and Dolores Koenig. The quilt-making process started in February as the ladies gathered memories about school history and they also stocked up on supplies with generous donations from Royce Quilting. A list of the contributors to the quilt is on one of the squares.  The quilt will be hung in the hallway at St. Frances Cabrini School.

Slinger equestrian team ties for fifth at WIHA state meet                   Courtesy Kerri Ast

The Slinger High School Equestrian team tied for fifth in Division C at the WIHA state meet Oct. 27-29. There were 77 schools that participated in the 10th annual event at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison. Of the 13 schools in Division C, Slinger was voted to receive the Spirit Award.

Team members and their horses participated in various events including Trail, Showmanship, Equitation, and Speed. The team includes Macy Ragsdale, Lola, Kayla Ormiston, Brooke Kiefer, Josie Odermann, coach Heather Woehrer, Team Manager Heather Kiefer, Mariah Kiefer and Jazmin Kropp as Hootie.

Veterans Tribute at Moraine Park Technical College

Common Sense Citizens of Washington County is organizing a Veterans Tribute on Monday, Nov. 6 at Moraine Park Technical College. The event will pay tribute to all veterans but special recognition will be given to all women who served and continue to serve. The event is free and open to the public. It will be held in the cafeteria at MPTC beginning at 6:30 p.m.

Make plans to attend Veterans Day program

Veterans Day is Saturday, Nov. 11 and the traditional Veterans Day program will be held “at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.” Next Saturday local veterans will gather at 10:45 a.m. at Veterans Plaza at Fifth Avenue and Poplar Street in West Bend.

At 10:55 a.m., a brief statement will be read followed by a moment of silence. At 11 a.m., the siren will sound and the West Bend Veterans Color Guard will fire the traditional three-round volley followed by the playing of Taps.

Cards for Veterans at West Bend Memorial Library

The American Legion Post 36 of West Bend will again sponsor the “Cards for Veterans” program at the West Bend Memorial Library. From Monday, Nov. 20 through Friday, Dec. 15, patrons visiting the library will find a display of Christmas and holiday cards.

All are encouraged to select a card, write a message to a veteran, and place the sealed cards in the box provided.  There is no cost for this service. On Dec. 15, the cards will be distributed to veterans living in the West Bend area. Donations of cards would be greatly appreciated. We wish to thank all of those who participated in this project in previous years.

Traffic jam for annual We Energies Cookie Book distribution

It felt a smidge like rush hour in Milwaukee… but without the road rage. And that looooong line of cars from the West Bend Police Department on Main Street to Decorah Road and then up Indiana Avenue to Sand Drive on Wednesday was all because of that popular We Energies Cookie Book.

Volunteers, staffers and retirees from We Energies were busy handing out about 6,000 books. It’s not just ANY cookie book by the way – it’s THE cookie book of the season and it’s tradition in West Bend to wait in line to get yours. How popular is it? West Bend Police and the State Patrol were out swinging traffic from about 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Cars started lining up at 8 a.m.

Book World closing – neighbors recall Fireside Books

Book World, 1602 S. Main Street, in West Bend is closing. According to a report in the Wisconsin Rapids Tribute, Book World announced today it will close all its 45 stores in seven states.

Book World, which touts itself as ‘family owned since 1976,’ opened its store in the Paradise Pavilion in October 2014.

According to Book World, “The company will begin liquidation sales Nov. 2. Each sale will run until all of inventory is sold.”

Company officials say a change in shopping habits and online sales impacted their decision.

Neighbors in West Bend remember January 2014 when Gary and Karen Christianson and his wife made the difficult decision to close Fireside Books & Gifts.

Tough decision for Fireside Books & Gifts

Some interest is being generated on the sale of West Bend’s hometown book store, Fireside Books & Gifts.

“Despite our accountant’s advice we put a sign in the store, feeling that a local person who knows the business might be interested and we’ve had several people contact us. We’re hoping something will come together,” said Karen Christianson, co-owner of Fireside Books with her husband Gary.

After more than 30 years in business the Christiansons are selling the shop at 1331 W. Paradise Dr. “My husband had some health problems,” Christianson said. “It was a hard decision but balanced against health you have to say this is what we’re going to do.”

The Christiansons have posted the store on Craig’s List and they sent an email blast along with direct-marketing mailings to gift and book shop owners in southeast Wisconsin. The latest step has been the basic ‘For Sale’ sign in the store window.

“We’ve operated in a high-traffic location for the last 15 years and the big bonus is our 30-year history of success,” said Christianson. “This is not a start-up business; we have wonderful staff that’s trained and can help customers find books, even out-of-print books. It’s such a pleasant business to be in because people want what you have to sell.”

A profitable business, Christianson said the competition with e-books and ordering online hasn’t really affected them. “We have maintained a good, strong customer base and a lot of people are moving away from e-books, except for vacation reading because they just like the feeling of a book.

“Also many more people say they really like the experience of coming to the store and supporting local merchants; don’t want to be dealing with an Amazon that doesn’t even create local jobs,” Christianson said.

Questioned whether they would close if the business is not sold by a certain timeline, Christianson said they “haven’t made that decision yet, we’ll see what happens.”

“Lots of people are saying ‘we don’t want to see this business go away and we want you to find somebody,’” said Christianson.

Update & tidbits              

-Stuff the Lifestar Rig with non-perishable foods from Piggly Wiggly, 1100 E. Commerce Blvd. in Slinger to benefit the Slinger Food Pantry. Lifestar crew members will be in the Piggly Wiggly parking lot from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. All food will be donated to the Slinger Food Pantry.

– The Salvation Army is kicking off its Red Kettle Campaign today and celebrity bell ringer Tinker will be on hand at Cabela’s in Richfield from noon – 2 p.m. The miniature horse is one of the more popular attractions for the Salvation Army.   Donations will be collected through Christmas Eve.  The goal this year is $3.8 million and all money raised stays local.

– There was a check presentation this week at Slinger High School as students from Hartford Union High School and Slinger teamed up to raise money and awareness during the 7th annual Slinger vs. Hartford “Coaches vs. Cancer” football game. This year the event raised over $12,000.  To date the event has contributed over $83,000 towards the fight against cancer.

– U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin participated in a roundtable discussion at Washington County Heroin Task Force and Elevate in Jackson on Friday.

– Hartford Union High School (HUHS) is hosting a free Veterans Breakfast on Monday, Nov. 13, 2017 from 7:15 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. to commemorate all those who served our country. All Hartford area veterans are cordially invited to attend

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

– Buy your ticket today from the West Bend Sunrise Rotary and have a chance at a $5,000 grand prize. Drawing is Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. at Enchantment in the Park. Tickets available at Jeff’s Spirits on Main, Pleasant Valley Tennis & Fitness and any Sunrise Rotary member.

– There will be a reunion Wednesday, Nov. 8 for the former employees of the old St. Joseph’s Hospital in West Bend. “The Best of St. Joe’s” are having another get together, according to Carol Ann Daniels. The gathering will begin with a social hour at 11 a.m. at the Top of the Ridge at Cedar Ridge in West Bend, 113 Cedar Ridge Drive.

– The annual VFW Essay contest is underway. The Patriot’s Pen Contest is for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  The theme is “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The Grand Prize is $5,000.  The Voice of Democracy Contest is for all high school students.  The theme is “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” The Grand Prize is a $30,000 scholarship.

St. Frances Cabrini at 60: How can the years have passed so quickly? | By Ann Marie Craig

Her hair was a bit whiter than the last time I saw her and moving around seemed to be more difficult for her, but the memories were spilling over as we shared stories about sixth grade so many years ago. Sister Jean patted my cheek as she said, “Let me look at your face.”

Standing outside the windowed black doors under the west veranda while waiting our turn to walk into St. Frances Cabrini School last Sunday brought back memories of wearing wet snow pants and mittens during cold, cold recesses and waiting for those very doors to open so we could come back inside and warm up.

There was no reprieve from frozen playtime when we were students at St. Frances Cabrini School.

The best we could do was play hard to stay warm, or hop around near the doors in hope of being first in line to get back into the building when the bell rang. The years fell away as my sisters and I – and our mother – stepped through those very doors along with several hundred other former students and parents to reminisce and celebrate the school’s 60th anniversary.

How can the years have passed so quickly?

There have been many changes to the physical plat of the school since we were students. Classrooms have been rearranged and some have been appropriated for activities other than daily academics. The old stage is gone and the former gym is reclaimed as a multi-use space and cafeteria. Library books line the walls of the old Chapel.

The bathrooms are the same as they were years ago – my sisters made certain to check – and aqua tiles still line the long corridors. Locker number 376 probably still harbors that little wooden bead I dropped behind it decades ago. I don’t suppose I will ever get it back…..

It is the shared experience of growing up and working and worshiping together in this space that brings us back with a sense of pride and no small bit of curiosity about who we have become since we left St. Frances Cabrini School.

Paging through yearbooks and poring over class photos from every one of those 60 years sparked giggles over siblings’ looks and memories of friends and hard work and fun.

“I loved school, and it is wonderful to be back at Cabrini again,” said Nancy Kruepke of Jackson( Class of ’74). “One of my fondest memories is when Judy Jessup and I were picked to crown the Mother Mary in second grade.”

Katie (Mueller) Noetzel of Cedarburg, WI (’86) commented, “I could remember the music room distinctly with the painted murals of the Muppets on the blue walls and was disappointed to see those were gone and the space was repurposed.

“Walking into the library, however, was like stepping into a time capsule. How amazing to see those same tables and chairs I sat in so often during my eight years there. I enjoyed the opportunity to remember my grade school days and that time in my life when I was immersed in the Cabrini community.”

The 60 years of St. Frances Cabrini School’s existence is an accomplishment and the memories continue to be made. This year’s graduates will join the ranks of the alumni as will the classes following, each having experienced the Cabrini community of faith and learning in unique ways.

Celebration of the commitment of the parishioners and greater community will continue as well with annual bestowal of alumni awards. We will see, in a very real way, the contributions of Cabrini graduates to the greater good of the world.

The pat of Sister Jean’s hand on my cheek seemed to be a touch of the love that binds all of us together as the Cabrini family then and now. She said to me, “…we had a saying, ‘Cabrini, a good place to be.’ It really was.”  It really still is.

Washington County veterans on today’s Honor Flight                By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran and former mayor of Hartford, James ‘Jim’ Core, will be heading to Washington D.C. on the Stars & Stripes Honor Flight on Saturday, Nov. 4.

Born and raised in Waupun, Core graduated Oshkosh Technical Institute with an Associate’s Degree in Accounting in June of 1967. Just as he started working at International Paper Company in Fond du Lac, he was drafted and entered into service in November of 1967.

Core completed eight weeks of basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.  “It was not fun,” he said. “Nothing like my desk job.”

After basic Core was transferred to Fort Polk, Louisiana where he had nine weeks of advanced infantry training.

After a 30-day leave, he was shipped to Vietnam in May 1968. “I landed in Da Nang, Vietnam,” said Core, “I was at a base there for 4-5 days before I was assigned to the 1st Cavalry Infantry Company, stationed out of Quang Tri. Our mission was search and destroy and we would be taken by helicopter to various villages.”

His missions quickly came to an end, five months later, when he was wounded by a booby trap. When he was well enough, he was transported to Japan for recovery time.

When he was strong enough to make the trip to the United States, he was admitted to Fitzsimmons VA Hospital in Aurora, Colorado. “I was out there a few months,” Core said, “I got home safe, which I’m thankful for, and I received the Purple Heart.”

Core was discharged in November 1969. He moved to Hartford in 1970 and was hired at Chrysler Outboard Corporation, and married his sweetheart, Kathy. He eventually decided to serve the city of Hartford for 25 years (alderman 1992-1998 and 2004-2012) and mayor for six years (1992-1998). He also served two terms as a supervisor on the Washington County Board.

His wife Kathy is delighted her husband is getting honored, “He keeps serving his country and his city and I’m proud of him,” she said. Their son, Jeff, is excited to be accompanying him on the Honor Flight as his guardian.

Core said the Honor Flight will be a very rewarding trip but he also expects it will be emotional and somewhat stressful as he will see the Vietnam War Memorial. Two names on that wall served in Core’s squad and were killed in action. Though it will be hard Core said he can take comfort knowing it will give him some closure as he honors his fallen comrades.

There are 16 veterans from Washington County on Saturday’s Honor Flight out of Milwaukee including:

James Coplin, Richfield, Vietnam War Air Force, Vietnam Army veteran Ron Wesloski from Germantown, Raymond Fairbanks, West Bend, Vietnam War Army, Frederick Grauberger, Germantown, Korean War Army, Russ Guillaume, West Bend, Vietnam War Army, Gregory Henson, Colgate, Vietnam War Army, James “Jonesy”  Korth, Kewaskum, Vietnam War Marines, William Kulas, Kewaskum, Vietnam War Marines, Russ Lamb, Hartford, Korean War Army, John McCauley, Sr., Jackson, Vietnam War Marines, Frederick “Fritz” Mueller, Slinger, Korean War Army, Ken Quade, Germantown, Korean War, Jerry Schneider, Kewaskum, Vietnam War Army, Bill Stueckroth, Germantown, Korean War Navy

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

St. Frances Cabrini School to celebrate 60 years                                By Ann Marie Craig

There is going to be a party in West Bend on Oct. 29 and it will include a trip down memory lane for former and present students, parents, teachers, and administrators of St. Frances Cabrini School.

Sixty years of education is an accomplishment. SFC Alumni & Development Coordinator Kristin Bayer described the purpose of the anniversary celebration. “We’re excited to share where the school is today, while remembering all those who helped get it to this point over the past 60 years. It’s a great chance for our parishioners, families, and the community to come together and see how far we’ve come.”

The celebration will begin at 10 a.m. with a Mass celebrated by former pastor Bishop Jeffrey Haines. Visiting guests include former principals Sr. Jean Hasenberg and Janice Stauske, former and current teachers, including Sr. Jolene Heiden and Sr. MaryAnn Kempa.

At 2 p.m. the Memory Quilt created by school and parish families will be revealed and the first-ever Alumni Awards will be presented. Everyone is invited and welcome.

The old Otten’s Food Market is for sale in Barton

The old Otten’s Food Market, 1805 Barton Avenue is for sale. The building also includes residential units at 1803 and 1807 Barton Avenue. The property has had many lives; the most notable is when Gene and Susie ran it as Otten’s Food Market. That business was an institution in Barton…. as was Gene’s black “discount” pen.

Gene Otten was a God-fearing man and had a long history of helping his neighbors. Gene owned and operated Otten’s Food Market for over 50 years, serving customers in the Barton area. He loved his work and always made sure the people of Barton were taken care of.

The building is for sale by owner. The property includes the retail/office space and a couple of separate apartments. The property is assessed at $151,000.  The asking price is $139,000.

Call or text Henry for more information at 414-eight 81-908 six.

On a history note: Gene Otten died June 11, 2016. Below is a note from Jay Stone, which was posted following the news of Gene’s death on WashingtonCountyInsider.com

Mr. Eugene Otten, a true Barton Icon. Growing up in Barton felt like a privilege to me as a young man. Barton was a family, Gene was like the father. I worked for Gene and Suzie stocking shelves, shaking rugs, delivering groceries and fetching his nightly drink from the Long. Branch. “Amen Brother” was very common to hear from Gene’s mouth a man who cared more about his friends and customers I’ve never met! He marked down the price of every item purchased, always made me laugh thinking why he’d have me price as i stocked the shelves.

Gene had a drawer with cards, every card in that drawer was a credit extended to his customers. Not only would he give out his groceries on credit he would have Cora deliver them for free.

I know that man had a HEART of GOLD !!!

All in fun but us kids would stack the milk crates as high as we could behind the building then knock them over knowing Suzie would come out yelling at us damn kids. Jake , Mark or myself would have to restack them before we left work.

I had the pleasure of growing up living next to one of the most incredibly caring man I’ve known. Gene spoke at my father Max Stone’s funeral, he spoke well of my father and declared him a man of service. I guess this is my chance to recognize and thank Mr. Eugene Otten for all he unknowingly taught me as a unruly teenager. Genie was truly a blessing and a man of service to all who were lucky enough to have known him. Thank you Mr. Otton for the memories brother may you walk the streets of gold nobody’s more deserving than you my friend ! R.I.P Gene til we meet again Jay Stone

Veterans Tribute at Moraine Park Technical College

Common Sense Citizens of Washington County is organizing a Veterans Tribute on Monday, Nov. 6 at Moraine Park Technical College. The event will pay tribute to all veterans but special recognition will be given to all women who served and continue to serve. The event is free and open to the public. It will be held in the cafeteria at MPTC beginning at 6:30 p.m.

Make plans to attend Veterans Day program

A note from VFW Commander John Kleinmaus regarding the upcoming Veterans Day program in West Bend. Despite the fact Veterans Day is on a Saturday this year the traditional Veterans Day program will still be held “at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.”  On Saturday Nov. 11, area veterans will gather at 10:45 a.m. at Veterans Plaza on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Poplar Street in West Bend.

At 10:55 a.m., a brief statement will be read followed by a moment of silence. At 11 a.m., the siren will sound and the West Bend Veterans Color Guard will fire the traditional three-round volley followed by the playing of Taps.

Each year the number of citizens attending this brief service has increased and we hope this trend continues this year. We are inviting all citizens of Washington County to stand with us as we remember our veterans.

New bike racks in West Bend a cooperative-educational effort

A collaborative educational effort between local businesses, Bike Friendly West Bend and students at Moraine Park Technical College came to fruition today with the installation of the first student-created bicycle rack in West Bend.

“The idea was to have technical college students gather requirements, design some custom racks and then fabricate the racks,” said Jeff Puetz from Bike Friendly West Bend. “The skill set MPTC to their students is very marketable in the current economy.”

Jeff Szukalski from Jeff’s Spirits on Main hosted a check donation and unveiling Monday morning in front of his store, 821 S. Main Street.

“This means I can ride my bike to Jeff’s and I don’t have to lock it to the mailbox,” said Andrew Schumacher from Bike Friendly West Bend.

Moraine Park Technical College received donated materials from Willard Tool and Mercury Marine. “Gene Wendorff from Hartford Finishing Inc. donated the powder coating and now every bike rack will be sold for $200 – $250 and all that money will go to a scholarship foundation for MPTC,” said Szukalski.

There are three different bicycle rack designs including a tree, a bicycle and a simple round frame with legs.

Cards for Veterans at West Bend Memorial Library

The American Legion Post 36 of West Bend will again sponsor the “Cards for Veterans” program at the West Bend Memorial Library. From Monday, Nov. 20 through Friday, Dec. 15, patrons visiting the library will find a display of Christmas and holiday cards.

All are encouraged to select a card, write a message to a veteran, and place the sealed cards in the box provided.  There is no cost for this service.

On Dec. 15, the cards will be distributed to veterans living in the West Bend area.

Donations of cards would be greatly appreciated. We wish to thank all of those who participated in this project in previous years.

Update & tidbits

-– “Brass, Wood, Voice” the setting is magnificent, the colors are gorgeous, the music is beautiful, and the Packers have a bye that day. The Nordic Brass, the Hesternus Early Music Consort, and the Jubilate Chorale will present a collaborative concert on Sunday, Oct. 29 at 4:30 pm in the Basilica at Holy Hill. The concert is open to the public, and a free-will offering will benefit the Basilica. The address of the Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary, Help of Christians at Holy Hill is 1525 Carmel Road in Hubertus.

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

– Buy your ticket today from the West Bend Sunrise Rotary and have a chance at a $5,000 grand prize. Drawing is Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. at Enchantment in the Park. Tickets available at Jeff’s Spirits on Main, Pleasant Valley Tennis & Fitness and any Sunrise Rotary member.

– Awakening Healing & Yoga is opening in the Slinger Centre, 413 E. Washington Street. It’s going into the location formerly home to Romualda Photography. . Yoga studio owner Traci Eberly hopes to open Nov. 4.   By Ruth Marks

– The first Family Fun Day of this season is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 4 from 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. at the West Bend Community Memorial Library. Themed with the upcoming symphony concert program, these Saturday morning programs usually feature a book, a craft or other hands-on project, and musical listening which combine to show the connection between literature, music and the arts. This is a joint venture between the Kettle Moraine Symphony and the library. The program is geared for ages 4-12, but all ages (including adults) are welcome.

– There will be a reunion Wednesday, Nov. 8 for the former employees of the old St. Joseph’s Hospital in West Bend. “The Best of St. Joe’s” are having another get together, according to Carol Ann Daniels. The gathering will begin with a social hour at 11 a.m. at the Top of the Ridge at Cedar Ridge in West Bend, 113 Cedar Ridge Drive. If you plan on joining us, please contact Carol Daniels, 262-689-1089 for further information.

– Fillmore Fire & Rescue is hosting a fish fry on Friday, Nov. 3 from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. Bring a non-perishable food item and get a free dessert.

– The annual VFW Essay contest is underway. The Patriot’s Pen Contest is for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  The theme is “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The Grand Prize is $5,000.  The Voice of Democracy Contest is for all high school students.  The theme is “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” The Grand Prize is a $30,000 scholarship.

– UW-Washington County Volleyball player Courtney Peters made the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference All-Tournament Volleyball team. There were 12 teams that participated in the State Tournament and only six players were voted to the All –Tournament team.

– This November, Salon Effervescence in Hartford is moving to a new location. Established for six years at 211 Main Street the salon will be relocating to 55 East Sumner.  By Samantha Sali

– The West Bend Theatre Company is moving this year’s annual production of “A Christmas Carol” to the Silver Lining Arts Center at the West Bend High School. Production manager Nancy Storrs said the West Bend Theatre Company will share proceeds with the High School choir programs and they plan on sharing with a different nonprofit organization for each show they produce. Next year the donation will be to the Historic Downtown West Bend Theatre.

Halloween memories across Washington County

Costumes have changed but many Halloween traditions have stayed the same. Below are local memories from Halloweens past including embarrassingly-treasured homemade outfits and candy swapping on the kitchen floor.

Paula Anderson, Hubertus – “Since we had a very large family and it was the 70s and money was tight, we generally all had to share two hard plastic face masks. You know the ones, where a skinny elastic band was connected to the mask with mini-staples which would catch your hair and leave little bald patches on the side of your head.

The mask only had a slit for you to breathe and you could stick your tongue through, thereby slicing your tongue and having it hurt for a week. We would make the rest of the costume; we had lots and lots of hobos which included old flannel shirts rolled up at the sleeves, dirt smeared on our cheeks, and a stick with a bandana tied around.

There was the hobo clown, which was the old flannel shirt rolled up, pants cuffed, along with two different socks and two different shoes, and the face painted with a red lipstick.  The lucky ones with the masks would have the old flannel shirts rolled up and some sort of bottoms.

Lastly, and I think this was just for laughs, the parents would take the youngest girl and put her in mom’s dresses and underwear and pack it full of pillows to look like a big fat old lady. We would find a wig (who knows where that came from) and some red lipstick to complete the outfit.

Back in those days money was tight so there was no driving around to houses, and there weren’t a lot of subdivisions, so we could only trick or treat on our road which consisted of about five houses.

Now, five houses isn’t going to give you nearly enough candy to last four days or even two days, so once we hit the five houses we would go home and the ones with the plastic masks would trade off and give them to the ones that didn’t have them, and then paint their faces and we would hit all the same houses!  As if the neighbors couldn’t figure out our scam.

The candy we would bring home and dump on the floor and sort it by suckers, hard candy, chocolate, and nasty chewy stuff.

There would be sub-categories like good suckers (anything cherry) and bad suckers, good hard candy and bad hard candy (candy cigarettes and bottle caps ROCKED!!), good chocolate (Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups were AWESOME AND STILL ARE), and bad chocolate, which was anything with coconut.

Once each person’s candy was sorted, the wheeling and dealing started. Almost always the older kids said, “I will trade you two of these for one of those.” Being a smaller kid, you thought you were really getting a deal if you got two for one so I would always say “sure”…and there went my only Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup for two icky salt water taffy blobs.”

Kathy Lofy of West Bend.  When she was growing up her family got plastic masks (a mousey gerbil thing and clown face) from Schultz Brothers in downtown West Bend. The masks were nothing but a hot mess. “You never wore those masks that long because your face would be dripping from the sweat just from breathing in it. All you had was a tiny slit in the lips and two little nostril holes, like that was supposed to help. And it was never quite the size of your face, it was an abnormal oval. Whose face was ever shaped like a big oval? Everybody ended up wearing the mask pushed up on top of their head because nobody could stand wearing it on their face.”

Shelly Kehoe of West Bend – “We’d spread all our candy around on the floor. We had so much I just felt like rolling in it, like we were filthy rich in candy. I loved it.”

JB Anon of West Bend – “I don’t think any of my friends had store-bought outfits.  That almost seemed too fake.  I remember a witch, which was a hat made out of black construction paper, black clothes, and the black nylon cape that my mom put around us when she cut our hair. A paper bag was always the candy catcher and candy bars were the favorite.  Circus peanuts were the worst.”

Jacci Gambucci of West Bend – “Halloween was in the dark. Our parents did not come along and had no way of knowing where we were. We had no cell phones, they just trusted we would land safely back on our own doorstep.  A pillowcase was the container of choice – large, strong, easy to carry.  We made a beeline to the “pillar house” on Spring Street because they gave full size boxes of Cracker Jack.  Worst treats were popcorn ball and candy corn. Costumes were definitely homemade, with the exception of perhaps a store-bought witches’ hat.”

Lori Lynn-Radloff of West Bend – “I remember going into Kliner’s Club, I lived down the street across the bar on Park Ave by Regner. When a group of kids walked in he would throw a handful of “full size” candy bars (those “big” candy bars were a big deal) on the floor and we would dive to get them. Sometimes people would give us pennies or apples. I do remember we never worried about what was in our bag. I don’t remember our parents checking our candy at the end of the night.”

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Mother’s Day Restaurant closes

There was little notice, but the doors were locked Tuesday at Mother’s Day Restaurant, 501 Wildwood Road in West Bend. Now comes word Sam Fejzuli has closed the business.

It wasn’t a hard decision according to Fejzuli. He said he had trouble getting employees and it was also difficult to “keep everybody happy.”

Fejzuli purchased the property in May 2015 for $260,000.  It was previously a Dairy Queen; the property had been in foreclosure since January 2014, and was listed at $390,000.

Originally from Macedonia, Fejzuli has been in the U.S. for 29 years. Fejzuli owned the Mother’s Day Restaurant in Horicon. Questioned whether the closure was temporary, whether Fejzuli would open elsewhere or sell the property, he said, “You ask me questions I don’t have the answers to.”

Second Kwik Trip approved in West Bend

The West Bend Common Council approved development of a second Kwik Trip in the city. This one will be in the former Walgreens building, 806 S. Main Street. “Congratulations Kwik Trip and thanks for choosing to do business in West Bend,” said Mayor Kraig Sadownikow.

On Oct. 4 the West Bend Plan Commission voted in favor of the development, however it charged Kwik Trip with completing a traffic study.

As part of the development Kwik Trip will tear down the old Walgreens building. Construction is expected to start in summer 2018. The first Kwik Trip in West Bend opened on Silverbrook Drive just north of Paradise Drive on Oct. 22, 2016.

New stores coming to town

The new strip mall just south of Pick ‘n Save south is taking shape. Larry Sajdak, Executive Vice President – Leasing at Inland Commercial Real Estate Services, said the 7,200-square-foot addition is being built by American Construction Services Inc. of West Bend.

A couple new businesses moving in include ATI Physical Therapy, Cricket Wireless (which is currently located inside GameStop on Paradise Drive), and a nail salon. Sajdak said they are also in talks with Firehouse Subs and they should lock in that deal shortly.

“These businesses will really help drive a lot of business to the area,” he said. “The stores are necessity based and Internet resilient.”

Sajdak said they are currently in discussion with Kroger regarding the former Grimm’s Dollar Express on the north side of the grocery store. Sajdak mentioned a “fuel pad” but said it’s “very early in the conversation.”

Saying thanks to a local hero

A special honor for Nick Busalacchi of West Bend who was recognized by the West Bend Common Council for helping save people following an apartment fire at the Wayne Road Apartments.

According to Fire Chief Gerald Kudek, “on June 1, 2017, Nick Busalacchi smelled smoke in his Wayne Road Apartment. Nick went into the hallway to investigate and found smoke coming from around the doorway of a downstairs apartment. He went outside and noted heavy fire coming from the patio doors of the apartment. Nick knew there were residents still in the apartment so he began to pound on the windows to alert them. He looked into a bedroom window and saw an occupant and he advised her to get out immediately. The occupant then climbed out of the bedroom window.

Once all occupants were accounted for Nick jumped into action and used a garden hose in attempts to control the fire until the Fire Department arrived. Mr. Busalacchi’s quick actions at great risk to his personal safety, saved lives and limited damage.”

Make plans to attend Veterans Day program

A note from VFW Commander John Kleinmaus regarding the upcoming Veterans Day program in West Bend. Despite the fact Veterans Day is on a Saturday this year the traditional Veterans Day program will still be held “at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.”  On Saturday Nov. 11, area veterans will gather at 10:45 a.m. at Veterans Plaza on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Poplar Street in West Bend.

At 10:55 a.m., a brief statement will be read followed by a moment of silence. At 11 a.m., the siren will sound and the West Bend Veterans Color Guard will fire the traditional three-round volley followed by the playing of Taps.

Each year the number of citizens attending this brief service has increased and we hope this trend continues this year. We are inviting all citizens of Washington County to stand with us as we remember our veterans.

Man who founded Jam for Kids has died

Robert “Bob” E. Cross, age 73, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, October 17, 2017 at the Lawliss Family Hospice in Mequon.  Bob had a place in his heart for the Special Olympics, donating his time and being the Founder of Jam For Kids.

Through his efforts, thousands of dollars were raised for the Special Olympics of West Bend.  Bob also had a passion for art, creating all the different logos of Jammin’ Sam and sharing his work with others. A Celebration of Life will be 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 23 at the Phillip Funeral Home Chapel in West Bend with Pastor Roger Knowlton presiding

Update & tidbits

– Weasler Engineering on Highway 45 just north of County Highway D in West Bend has a number of job openings. Mark your calendar for Tuesday, Oct. 24 from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. for the Weasler Career Fair. Jobs include benefits, health care, and shift premiums.

– AT&T in West Bend has relocated from 1442 W. Washington Street to 1606 S. Main Street. The location in the strip mall on W. Washington Street is now for lease.

– ‘Welcome Naskull Fans!’ to this year’s Holy Hill Halloween display presented by Jimmy Zamzow. The rowdy crowd of skeletons is highlighted in a NASCAR theme. The helmets to prevent head injuries are rather hilarious. The display is on Highway 167 as you make your way west to Holy Hill.

– The first Family Fun Day of this season is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 4 from 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. at the West Bend Community Memorial Library. Themed with the upcoming symphony concert program, these Saturday morning programs usually feature a book, a craft or other hands-on project, and musical listening which combine to show the connection between literature, music and the arts. This is a joint venture between the Kettle Moraine Symphony and the library. The program is geared for ages 4-12, but all ages (including adults) are welcome.

– There will be a reunion Wednesday, Nov. 8 for the former employees of the old St. Joseph’s Hospital in West Bend. “The Best of St. Joe’s” are having another get together, according to Carol Ann Daniels. The gathering will begin with a social hour at 11 a.m. at the Top of the Ridge at Cedar Ridge in West Bend, 113 Cedar Ridge Drive. If you plan on joining us, please contact Carol Daniels, 262-689-1089 for further information. Reservations must be received no later than Oct. 25, 2017.

– The Richfield Historical Society is hosting an event: “Wisconsin Petroglyphs” by Dale Van Holten, on Thursday, Oct. 26 at 7 p.m., at the Richfield Fire Hall, 2008 State Road 175. This presentation will introduce you to petroglyphs discovered in Waterloo, Wisconsin. Admission is free and open to the Richfield Historical Society Members and the general public.

– Fillmore Fire & Rescue is hosting a fish fry on Friday, Nov. 3 from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. Bring a non-perishable food item and get a free dessert.

– The annual VFW Essay contest is underway. The Patriot’s Pen Contest is for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  The theme is “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The Grand Prize is $5,000.  The Voice of Democracy Contest is for all high school students.  The theme is “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” The Grand Prize is a $30,000 scholarship.

– The West Bend Theatre Company is moving this year’s annual production of “A Christmas Carol” to the Silver Lining Arts Center at the West Bend High School. Production manager Nancy Storrs said the West Bend Theatre Company will share proceeds with the High School choir programs and they plan on sharing with a different nonprofit organization for each show they produce. Next year the donation will be to the Historic Downtown West Bend Theatre.

Trick or treat times and locations

Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year; Oct. 31 but quite a few neighbors in Washington County are holding trick or treat on the weekend.

Barton, West Bend and Trenton will have trick or treat Saturday, Oct. 28 from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.  Newburg and Richfield are also Saturday but from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. and Town of Farmington is Saturday, Oct. 28 from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. and Village of Kewaskum is from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

In the Village of Jackson the Jackson Area Community Center will host Ghoul Gala on Sunday, Oct. 29 from 3 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. and then trick or treat is 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

The Village of Slinger will hold trick or treat Saturday, Oct. 28 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. Families are welcome to a free event after as Spooky Slinger will be held from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. at Slinger Community Park with music, pumpkin carving contest, costume contest, and refreshments.

Allenton and Addison trick or treat is Sunday, Oct. 29 from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.   Hartford is also Sunday from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Germantown celebrates Halloween on Tuesday, Oct. 31 from 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Hilda Rasmussen from West Bend completes Stars & Stripes Honor Flight

Korean War veteran Hilda Rasmussen of West Bend was one of 11 veterans from Washington County that took part in last Saturday’s Stars & Stripes Honor Flight to Washington D.C.

Rasmussen was 20 years old when she enlisted in the Army. A southerner who grew up in North Carolina and Virginia, Rasmussen was working at Rose’s Five and Dime when a friend whose sister was in the Army suggested she join so she could finish school.

“I enlisted against my parents’ wishes,” said Rasmussen. “My mom had breast cancer and there just wasn’t any money for school. It was hard to get jobs because there were so many wives from the Navy base looking to get jobs.”

Rasmussen said she and her friend were going to go into the service on the Buddy Plan, which meant if two people went in together the military kept them together during service.

“I came home and told my parents and that didn’t go well,” said Rasmussen. Adopting a stern voice she mimicked her mother’s response. “No you’re not,” she barked. “That’s not something a young lady does.”

Rasmussen was upset and later that night had a change of heart when she heard her mother crying. “The next morning at breakfast I told them I prayed about it and didn’t want them to be disappointed in me and said I wasn’t going,” she said.

Rasmussen’s mother had a change of heart too and gave her daughter the OK. “We’re not going to have it said we wouldn’t let you do what you wanted so you’re going,” Rasmussen recalled.

A graduate of Deep Creek High School in Deep Creek, Virginia a young Rasmussen left the cotton and tobacco fields and headed to basic training at Fort McClellan in Anniston, Alabama.

With a goal to continue her education, Rasmussen attended correspondence school at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. She worked in courts and boards and eventually ended up in food service.

A petite soldier who “didn’t even wear a size one dress” Rasmussen was known to colleagues as ‘Danni.’

“It was short for Daniel Boone,” said Rasmussen. “I did pretty well on the rifle range as a sharpshooter.”

Rasmussen pulls out a small, narrow white box full of medals labeled sharpshooter and marksmen; these were post Army service and something she earned when she joined the NRA.

“I had boys after the service and I didn’t want to stay home,” she said. “I went to NRA classes so I could go hunting with them.”

Rasmussen picked up her military story with details on her years in food service and how on Sundays the stewards from various mess halls would invite her over to eat. “They had linen table cloths and real china and they made special desserts for me,” she said laughing. “I had some of the most luscious desserts you ever tasted.”

Following on Sunday feast at the Air Force mess hall, Rasmussen was challenged to leave like everyone leaves in the Air Force. “They made me jump out of a tower,” she said.

Hooked up to a harness with a parachute Rasmussen was fearless. “The only thing was I came in uniform that day and I was wearing a skirt,” she said. “I had two pins in my purse and I pinned my skirt like culottes. I think every man in that mess hall stayed that day to see me jump.”

Rasmussen relays her stories while perched on the edge of her living room couch. Her memories are detailed and her speech pattern is a bit rushed with excitement.

Rasmussen spent her entire military career stateside at Fort Belvoir. She met her husband, who was also stationed at the base. They married March 17 so the military wouldn’t send her overseas to Germany.

After her discharge on July 12, 1956, Rasmussen worked for specifications at Fort Belvoir and later spent nearly five years just outside Washington D.C. as military air-transport service for the plane for the President of the United States.

“I really liked that job,” she said. “There were four girls in the office and 12 men. The building was basically a Quonset hut,” laughed Rasmussen.

In 1960, Rasmussen and her husband moved to the Campbellsport area. “I started my first job at Local Loan Finance Company in Milwaukee. I worked at 21st and North Avenue and I was there 15 years and we were robbed five times,” she said.

As years past Rasmussen’s life changed. Her first husband died and she later remarried. She had two sons and one was killed in a traffic accident in California.

Rasmussen lives with her other son Kevin Nelson. He was her guardian on the Honor Flight.

This was the 42nd “mission” for the Honor Flight since 2008.  There were 90 Korean War vets on the flight along with 10 WWII and 50 Vietnam War veterans.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Celebration of life for Bob Gannon

There will be a Celebration of Bob’s life on Sunday, Oct. 15 from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. at West Bend Mutual Prairie Center. A note regarding the celebration is being circulated and friends said this was Bob’s wish to forego a funeral.

On Wednesday neighbors in West Bend were shocked as news spreads about the death of Assembly Rep. Bob Gannon. Early word is around 9 p.m. Tuesday night the Allenton Fire and Rescue responded to a call for an unresponsive male in a vehicle at Gonring Drive and West Lake Drive. Washington County Sheriff said Gannon died of natural causes. The Sheriff responded to a 911 call at Gonring Boat Launch and found Gannon unresponsive behind the wheel.

Gannon was first elected as a representative in the 58th Assembly District on Nov. 4, 2014. He was extremely active in the community on boards such as Family Promise and the Washington County Youth Hockey League. Gannon had also been a member of the West Bend Sunrise Rotary.

Gannon owned Richards Insurance Agency and was previous owner of the AmericInn Hotel in West Bend.

West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow was shocked at the news. “He’s a one-of-a-kind guy, that’s for sure,” said Sadownikow. “His voracious appetite for all that is good about the state of Wisconsin will be missed.”

Jeff Szukalski is a close friend of the Gannon family and a member of the West Bend Sunrise Rotary. “It’s just a shock,” said Szukalski. “I saw him a week ago and he was in great spirits and great shape. No thought that he would have any problems right now so I’m guessing any health problems he may have had were undetectable.”

Gannon’s co-worker in the assembly office Tiffany Koehler said she didn’t want to believe it. “My heart and prayers go out to the Gannon family at this difficult time and to all our neighbors in Assembly District 58,” said Koehler.

Dan Martin worked with Gannon as a member of the West Bend Jaycees in the early 1990’s. “Bob was a guy with a lot of ideas and he knew how to work with people to get things done,” said Martin.

Former Dist. 58 Assembly Rep. Patty Strachota released a statement: I am deeply saddened by the sudden loss of a friend and my successor in the 58th Assembly District. My sincere and deepest condolences go out to Kris, his family and friends.

Bob Gannon was a true fighter for the conservative cause and a passionate man who was dedicated to his family and country. His large personality was only matched by his generosity to the charities he believed in. Bob made a difference in the lives of many people in Washington County. He will be missed. . Pat Strachota

Fellow Assembly Rep. Jesse Kremer (R-59 Kewaskum) issued the following statement.

“I was deeply saddened to learn early this morning of Bob Gannon’s passing. While he and I may not always have seen eye-to-eye on how to achieve all of the conservative goals of Washington County constituents, Bob’s passion toward accomplishing those goals will be greatly missed. I would like to offer my deepest condolences to Bob’s family and friends, and most especially to his wife, Kris.”

Senator Duey Stroebel (R-Cedarburg) released the following statement,

“My wife, Laura, and I offer our deepest condolences and prayers to Kris and the rest of the Gannon family. Bob was a friend and colleague who showed zeal for serving his community. Bob was committed to finding solutions to issues facing the urban areas of our state. Earlier this year he held hearings in cities around Wisconsin talking to people facing poverty.

Bob wore his passion on his sleeve. Rarely did a room of constituents not know where Bob stood on any issue. Bob was not interested in being a politician. He went to Madison to do the right thing and came back to the district to serve his neighbors. Bob served God, his family and his neighbors in that order.

Bob “gave em’ heck” and all that mattered was improving the lives of Wisconsinites. I will miss Bob’s jovial personality. There was not a day that Bob did not put a smile on someone’s face.”

West Bend alderman Christopher Jenkins said Gannon was a mentor to him and his family. “He gave us guidance and was always willing to point us in the right direction. I enjoyed working with him in the different facets and our family is mourning with the Gannon family for this sudden loss.”

Gannon was married with two children. He was a 1977 graduate of West Bend East High School.

Bob Gannon was 58 years old. Please keep the Bob Gannon family in your thoughts and prayers.

Washington County Veterans on the Oct. 14 Honor Flight

The next Stars and Stripes Honor Flight is Oct. 14 and veterans from Washington County on that flight include: Hilda Rasmussen who served in the Women’s Army Corps (WAC) in the 1950’s.

Tom Landvatter, West Bend, Korean War Army fire control repairman, Charles Sawyer, Germantown, Korean War Marines 1st Marine Div teletype operator, Ron Pollpeter, Germantown, Korean War Navy fireman, Norman Toll, Slinger, Korean War Marines teletype operator, Procopio “Nick” Sandoval, West Bend Vietnam War Army, Mark Cayner, Kewaskum, Vietnam War Army MP, Mike Orban, West Bend, Vietnam War Army, infantry, Bronze Star, PTSD speaker. This will be 42nd “mission” for the Honor Flight since 2008. There will be 90 Korean War vets on the Oct. 14 flight along with 10 WWII and 50 Vietnam War veterans.

Three local doctors to open private practice: West Bend Medical

Three popular local doctors from West Bend have moved to private practice and opened their own clinic.

Partners in family practice, Dr. Chad Tamez, Dr. Brian Wolter and Dr. Carey Cameron are starting West Bend Medical at W178 N9201 Water Tower Place Suite #200 in Menomonee Falls.  The phone number is 262-355-8010.

“We’ve been toying with the idea for over a year,” said Tamez. “We just wanted to make sure it’s viable and it is.”

Tamez, 42, and his business partners are excited about a number of new opportunities especially providing more personalized care.

“Being able to run our patient experience the way we think is best is important to us,” he said. “We want to try to make it a little more personal and bring back the feel of small-town medicine.”

Because Tamez and his business partners are leaving a current clinic, the no-compete contract stipulates they have to be 15 miles from their primary location for the next 18 months. A no-solicitation clause has also prevented the doctors from saying more, to this point.

Long term, Tamez believes the practice will eventually open a location closer to West Bend.

“The relationships I’ve developed and fostered with my patients for the past 12 years are deeply personal and important to me,” said Tamez. “And if I can do this in 12 years, working within the constraints of a large system, imagine what I can do in the next 20 while being able to customize every aspect of the care I choose to deliver.”

Dr. Tamez and Dr. Wolter trained together at the Medical College of Wisconsin both in medical school and residency. Tamez has been at the West Bend Clinic since 2005 with Wolter joining in 2008.  Dr Cameron has been with the clinic since 2003, spending most of that time in Jackson.

Tamez is a local product, graduating West Bend West High School in 1994.

West Bend Medical officially opened its phones Oct. 4 and doctors begin seeing patients Oct. 10.

 Plan Commission approves Kwik Trip No. 2 in West Bend

The West Bend Plan Commission voted 4-1 with two members absent to approve development of a Kwik Trip, 806 S. Main Street. The location is the former Walgreens site on the southwest corner of Decorah Road and Main Street.

This was the second time representatives from Kwik Trip appeared before the Plan Commission. During the Sept. 5 meeting the Plan Commission requested a traffic study be conducted.

Kwik Trip submitted two packets of information with the conclusion:  No intersection modifications are expected to be necessary to accommodate the proposed Kwik Trip development. All movements are expected to continue to operate desirably with the completion of Kwik Trip.

Several commission members had concerns about traffic patterns considering the two schools in the vicinity including St. John’s Lutheran and Badger Middle School.

There were also concerns about an outdoor speaker system. Kwik Trip said it amended its plan and the overhead speakers would be used only for emergency, no music would be played and the pumps would have speakers built in.

Plan Commission member Jed Dolnick had several questions about the traffic study including Exhibit 6 where there would be 3,260 driveway trips. Dolnick voted in opposition to the zoning change, indicating he still had concerns about “a lot of traffic at the corner during peak hours” and he was concerned about moving a driveway closer to Decorah.

“As I expressed last month I think we’re making a mistake,” he said.

The Plan Commission also talked to Kwik Trip real estate development manager Troy Mleziva about how semis would refrain from backing up onto Fifth Avenue or Main Street.

“We will provide those details in writing,” he said. “We can control the time we deliver during non-peak times.”

This would be the second Kwik Trip in West Bend. The plans detail a 7,316-square-foot building with 20 gas pumps on five pump islands.

The development must still be approved by the Common Council. That will likely be on the Oct. 16 agenda. If approved Mleziva said construction would start in 2018.

“Thank you for Kwik Trip to continue to do business in West Bend,” said Mayor Kraig Sadownikow.

Children’s Hospital is moving to Cast Iron

The tower at the former West Bend Aluminum Company building on Veterans Avenue is going to have a new look. During Tuesday night’s Plan Commission meeting a sign for Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin/West Bend Pediatrics was approved.

“Do you think people might think it’s a hospital?” asked commission member Sara Fleischman.

Mayor Kraig Sadownikow said, “I think it does give the appearance this is a hospital.”

The sign will be up above second floor. The clinic is on the first floor, currently undergoing a build out on the northeast corner. The sign is on the stair tower which is a full floor higher than the rest of the building.

Fleischman also expressed concern that people will want signs on different sides of tower.

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin spokeswoman Maureen Goetz said the sign will help with direction and visibility. “Families come with a level of stress and anxiety and we want them to find us,” she said.

Originally the sign was proposed at a lower height but because of light emission the request was made to put it higher to reduce conflict with any adjacent residential window.

Commission member Bernie Newman asked it Children’s Hospital would also have signage at the entrance to the buildings on Highway 33 and N. Main Street. Goetz confirmed they would.

“This brings life to the side of the building,” said commission member Chris Schmidt. “The signage is good when done tastefully.”

The Plan Commission unanimously approved the sign. The clinic is relocating from its site on W. Washington Street and Shepherds Drive to the Cast Iron building. The new location will feature three doctors providing pediatric care.

Update & tidbits

The new pizza restaurant going into the old Heros Sandwich Shoppe, 140 Kettle Moraine Drive North in Slinger will be called Angelos Pizzaria. The sign will simply read Angelos Pizza. Update courtesy Ruth Marks.

-Interfaith Caregivers is holding its 2017 Campfire Tea fundraiser on Sunday, Oct. 8 from 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. at the Prairie Center at West Bend Mutual. This year’s event features celebrity waiters, an amazing silent auction, the popular purse auction, and a 50/50 raffle. Tickets are $35.

– The annual VFW Essay contest is underway. The Patriot’s Pen Contest is for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  The theme is “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The Grand Prize is $5,000.  The Voice of Democracy Contest is for all high school students.  The theme is “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” The Grand Prize is a $30,000 scholarship.

– American Construction Services Inc. of West Bend is heading up development of the new Grafton Towne Place Suites hotel on Gateway Drive, just to the east of Highway 43 in neighboring Ozaukee County. The 4-story hotel is located south of Highway 60.

-Governor Scott Walker will be visiting Spiros Industries in Kohlsville on Monday, Oct. 9 from 12:45 p.m. – 1:55 p.m. Spiros is hosting a Manufacturing Day and the Gov. will be touring the facility and interacting with employees.

– The winner of Roots and Branches Business Beautification Award for 2017 is “The Red House” Creative Cuts, 530 Walnut Street. Verna Reindl accepted the award at Roots and Branches Garden Party in the Vineyard.

– Dress in your Halloween best and trick or treat in downtown West Bend during Fall Fest, Oct. 13. A new addition to Fall Fest is Pumpkin Bowling. Roll a hand-sized pumpkin, knock down pins and win prizes.

– The Kettle Moraine YMCA has partnered with United Way of Washington County and the West Bend School District to install a Born Learning Trail at the Y’s West Washington Street location. A ribbon cutting and grand-opening celebration will be held on Oct. 16 at 9:30 a.m. Born Learning is an initiative that uses research-based activities to build language and literacy.

Trick or treat times and locations

Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year; Oct. 31 but quite a few neighbors in Washington County are holding trick or treat on the weekend.

Barton, West Bend and Trenton will have trick or treat Saturday, Oct. 28 from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.  Newburg and Richfield are also Saturday but from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Town of Farmington is also Saturday, Oct. 28 from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

In the Village of Jackson the Jackson Area Community Center will host Ghoul Gala on Sunday, Oct. 29 from 3 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. and then trick or treat is 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

The Village of Slinger will hold trick or treat Saturday, Oct. 28 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. Afterward families are welcome to a free event as Spooky Slinger will be held from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. at Slinger Community Park with music, pumpkin carving contest, costume contest, food and beverages.

The Village of Kewaskum will hold trick or treat Saturday, Oct. 28 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Allenton and Addison trick or treat is Sunday, Oct. 29 from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.   Hartford is also Sunday from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Germantown celebrates Halloween on Tuesday, Oct. 31 from 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Grimm’s Fairytales exhibit opens at MOWA

“We’ve never done an exhibit like this… and it’s pretty impressive,” said Laurie Winters, executive director at the Museum of Wisconsin Art, during a break Thursday while helping set up the new Gerit Grimm’s Fairytales exhibit.

“A lot of it is based on Grimm’s Fairytales which are known to be fairly graphic even though they’re read to children,” said Winters. “Some of it is based on classical mythology and a little bit of it is historical subjects.”

Winters describes Grimm’s as a pretty dramatic transformation.“Here is an artist who a decade ago was working in a former East German pottery factory making small, utilitarian teacups and plates and she comes to the United States and gradually evolves into making this life-size sculpture that’s kind of quirky and humorous and irresistible in its appeal,” she said.

Grimm has been living in Wisconsin for six years and teaches ceramics at UW-Madison.

“She has this remarkable ability to create personalities for her figures,” said Winters. “It’s almost as if she’s creating a motionless stage theater with these figures. They’re strong and powerful…. you almost feel like they’re human figures on a stage.” This is the first venue for Grimm’s exhibition.

Honoring last Civil War veteran buried in Washington County

An intimate military ceremony Sunday at the St. Lawrence Parish cemetery as the last Civil War veteran buried in Washington County was recognized.

Records show John Kauper, 91, the last of Hartford’s Civil War Veterans, died Feb. 21, 1939 at the home of his daughter in Harvey, Illinois.

Kauper is one of 16 names on a Civil War monument blessed by Rev. Davies Edassery. “It is a way to offer tribute and honor them with this monument,” said Edassery.  “We thank them for their service and pray for their eternal reward and we continue to support all other service men and women.”

The gathering of about 25 people then recited the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be to the Father and Edassery sprinkled the monument with holy water.

Tony Montag, co-chair of the Washington County American Legion, thanked the Knights of Columbus for making a donation to pay for the monument. Seven Legion veterans then fired a three-round volley followed by the playing of Taps.

Following the prayer there was a brief ceremony to recognize Kauper and his great grandson Jim Kauper gave a little history.

“John immigrated to the U.S. from Bavaria, Germany on March 17, 1848 when he was 7 years old,” said Jim Kauper.  “The family settled in St. Lawrence when he was 14 and because there were no computers, TVs I’m sure the war looked like a great adventure to the young man.”

John Kauper ran away when he was 17 to join the Union Army. His dad went down to Milwaukee and dragged him back. That lasted a couple weeks and Kauper ran away again to Fond du Lac County and joined the Union Army under the name John Herman so his dad couldn’t find him.

“This means quite a bit,” said Jim Kauper.

The names of the other Washington County Civil War veterans listed on the monument include: Wilhelm Blenker, George Derfuss, Simon Dressel, Bertram Floss, John Fohn, Michael Geheim, Henry Guenther, John Gutschenritter, Johann Mehringer, Gustave Schlageter, Joseph Schuh, Adam Schwabenlander, John Schweitzer, Lawrence Schwerbel, John Stoffel and Peter Stoffel.

A portion of the presentation read at the ceremony: “Therefore, we the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War gather at this memorial in sacred memory of our fathers and their sacrifices.” If I may be so bold as to quote from the epitaph from another time and place “Tell them of us and say, For their tomorrow we gave our today.”

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Dave Sukawaty inducted into Slinger High School Hall of Fame            By Samantha Sali

On Friday prior to kickoff of the Slinger High School homecoming game, the community of Slinger tipped its hats to Dave Sukawaty inducting him into Slinger High School’s Hall of Fame.

“Dave’s just thrilled to be inducted into the Hall of Fame,” said mom, Eileen Sukawaty. “He loves all sports and he doesn’t miss anything.”

Sukawaty will be inducted as a distinguished service member, chosen specifically because of his passion for supporting the school’s sporting events and his adoration for all the people in the community.

Sukawaty has been involved in sports since he attended Slinger High School in the mid 1970’s. He helped where he could and was manager of the Slinger boys’ basketball state-qualifying team.

Sukawaty graduated in 1978 and is still actively involved in today’s activities.  Sukawaty runs the scoreboard at the little league park, he takes water to the refs during games, and works the entrance gate during football season.

Because of his involvement, everybody in Slinger knows Sukawaty and everyone says he an exuberantly generous person.

“He’s a gem of a man,” said Daren Sievers, Superintendent of Slinger School District. “He’s at every sporting event. He lives for sports. We have him on staff as a light-duty custodian because he lives and breathes Slinger and the Owls. Slinger is the center of his universe and we all support him.”

Slinger High School Principal Phil Ourada echoed those thoughts. “Dave is Slinger. You will not find another person who cares more about our coaches, athletes and our teams than Dave. He is a special person and has a heart of gold!”

Sukawaty has definitely made a huge impact on school staff. Athletic Director Mike Daniels said, “Dave is the epitome of Slinger pride. Everything he does is for Slinger. He’s a great man and a great example of why this community is so supportive of its members.”

The High School’s football and basketball coaches agree. “He’s a good guy. He loves everyone in Slinger and everyone loves him,” Coach Jacklin said. “He’s always in the community doing things for people. Always at games and church and always wants to talk sports. You wouldn’t meet a more upbeat kinda guy. He’s a really positive part of the community and I am just ecstatic he gets to be a part of our Hall of Fame.”

Basketball coach Nate Grimm nodded his head to how impactful Sukawaty has been in the community. “Dave has been a consistent and passionate supporter of Slinger athletics since I came here,” said Grimm. “Dave shows up consistently to all sports and is eager to let you know he’s supporting the team.  Dave will often ask coaches ‘Can we do it? Can we win this week?’  Dave works quietly behind the scenes to build relationships with community members, the athletic directors, and officials involved with Slinger sports.  Dave’s consistent and passionate support for Slinger athletes and coaches makes him a worthy inductee into the Hall of Fame.”

 

Sukawaty was tremendously enthusiastic when talking about Friday’s induction. “I was really happy and excited about being chosen,” he said. “I support all sports – I see the teams to every game and to the championships. It’s an honor to be in the Hall of Fame.”

This Friday gives the community of Slinger a chance to turn the tables and shower Sukawaty with the love and respect he has shown them.

Two other Hall of Fame inductees were Dr. John Riesch and Tracy Roever.

Property on W. Washington Street has been sold

The parcel of land on W. Washington Street where Pick ‘n Save north is located has been sold.

Records in the city assessor’s office show property owners Gencap West Bend LLC sold the parcel to Exchangeright Net Portfolio 17 LLC for $18,186,840. The property has a 2017 assessment of $5,835,200.

Gencap West Bend LLC originally purchased the property Feb. 17, 2009 for $4 million from WBHG LLC.  Pick ‘n Save north was built in 2009.

On a history note: On July 6, 2004 – West Bend Royale a Wisconsin Limited Partnership sold the property to WBHG LLC for $1,437,600. Prior to that in Sept. 1976 Kassuba Inns a Florida Corp. sold through a quick claim to Behtesda Corp. for $1 million.

Amity Apartment building has been sold

The 36-unit Amity Apartment building has been sold. According to the West Bend city assessor Amity Apartments LLC sold the building at 723 S. Main Street to JNG West Bend LLC for $2,232,000. The 2017 assessed value on the property is $1,771,700.

On a history note: At one time the Amity Apartments were attached to the West Bend School District office. That was later split in a certified survey map.

The apartment section, then owned by Amity Leather, sold in August 1997 to West Bend Economic Development. That property sale was listed as “exempt.” In that same year the building at 735 S. Main Street was sold to the West Bend School District for $900,000.

Then, four years later in December 2001, West Bend Economic Development sold its north end of the building to Amity Apartments for $400,000.

On a side note: The Pizza Ranch purchase of the former Ponderosa building, 2020 W. Washington Street in West Bend, will close this week. The remodel should begin in October.

Wisconsin Supreme Court to hear man’s appeal in murder of Jessie Blodgett                      By Samantha Sali

On July 15, 2013 the city of Hartford was rocked by the news of the brutal murder of Jessie Blodgett, 19, who was found dead in her family’s home. In 2014, Blodgett’s classmate Daniel Bartelt was convicted of killing Jessie and sentenced to life in prison. Today, the saga continues, as Bartelt is pursuing an appeal with the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Buck Blodgett and his wife, Joy, received a letter two weeks ago from the State. It was the first they heard Bartelt was trying to appeal and seeing those words was “a knife in Joy’s heart,” said Buck Blodgett.

This isn’t the first time Bartelt has appealed his conviction. Last year, Bartelt appealed to the appellate court; it did not rule in his favor. Bartelt is now taking that appeal to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. This is the last step Bartelt can take regarding this specific appeal.

“He’s not appealing his conviction because he’s innocent,” Buck Blodgett said, “He’s appealing his conviction because he’s hoping there will be a ruling in his favor about his Miranda rights, so he can get off even though he is guilty.”

Bartelt claims his Miranda rights were not properly followed the day he voluntarily talked with law enforcement about Jessie’s murder.

“According to the police, the judge in the trial, and the appellate court, ruled there was no violation of Miranda rights,” said Buck Blodgett. “So now we will see what the Supreme Court says.”

Although Bartelt is reopening the wound for the Blodgett family, Buck Blodgett said he has faith in the justice system to make the right decision about the appeal. “I have zero complaints with anything,” he said.  “The Justice Department has been great every step of the way. My only complaint is with Dan and his choice to waste resources that could be better used elsewhere.”

If the appeal is denied, that is not the end of Bartelt trying to get released from prison. “If the Supreme Court does not rule in his favor, he can start over and appeal a different point,” said Buck Blodgett. “Dan has done enough destruction and damage. He ruined and ended one life, but he doesn’t get to do that with mine.”

Buck Blodgett will not attend the appeal, but he has said numerous times, he is still open to connecting with Bartelt if he ever reaches out – given he genuinely admits and apologizes for what he did.

Based on the appeal process Bartelt is pursuing, Buck Blodgett may never see that day but he still speaks of forgiveness of his daughter’s killer.

“What he is doing is extraordinarily hurtful to people and it makes me upset sometimes, but I still forgive him,” he said.  “And I’m going to practice that forgiveness every day because forgiveness and love aren’t feelings, they’re commitments. And I’m committed to forgiving Dan.” The Supreme Court oral argument will be broadcast live at 9:45 a.m. on Nov. 14.

New restaurant to open in Slinger                                                            By Ruth Marks

A new restaurant will be opening in Slinger next month as Tony Herrera, owner of Polanco Mexican Restaurant & Cantina, opens a pizza place at 140 Kettle Moraine Drive North across from Bergmann Appliance & TV.

The bright yellow and green building was previously home to Heros Sandwich Shoppe, which opened in October 2010 and closed a couple weeks ago.

Prior to that it was Slinger’s original location for Subway and before that it was a gas station.

The new pizza place will offer pickup and delivery, online ordering, and a few tables for indoor dining. Herrera said due to the small size of the building, there will be a limited menu but additional selections will be unveiled once the eatery opens.

Herrera is leasing the building. “I was driving past, saw it was available and liked it because it was on Highway 144 and close to both Highway 175 and I41,” he said. The front half of the formerly bright yellow cement block building was painted red this weekend. Herrera said he’s tossing around a couple names for the business but so far nothing is set in stone.

Update & tidbits

On Saturday, Sept. 30 the West Bend VFW Post sponsors Cub Scout Pack 3791 will hold a Flag Retirement Ceremony” at 10 a.m. at the VFW Post, 260 Sand Drive. The public is invited.

-The Kettle Moraine Symphony opens its season Sunday, Oct. 1.

Interfaith Caregivers is holding its 2017 Campfire Tea fundraiser on Sunday, Oct. 8 from 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. at the Prairie Center at West Bend Mutual. This year’s event features celebrity waiters serving wonderful tea and scrumptious appetizers. There will also be an amazing silent auction, the very popular purse auction, and a 50/50 raffle. Tickets are $35 per person.

Stop in and check out the transformation of the former Ol Tyme Cleaners, 910 S. Main Street in West Bend, as it has morphed into a nurse staffing company. Alliance Services, Inc. specializes in finding nursing jobs for various health care facilities. There will be an Open House on Friday, Oct. 6 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

-Bob’s Main Street Auto is hosting a free Wheels for Women car care clinic on Thursday, Oct, 5 at 5:30 p.m. at 1200 N. Main Street in West Bend. Learn everything you need to know about your vehicle during this hands-on clinic.   

On Wednesday, Oct. 4 the fall lecture series at UW-WC will focus on the United Kingdom. Graeme Reid, the Director of Collections at the Museum of Wisconsin Art, presents a Survey of Scottish photography. The 6:30 p.m. lecture is free and open to the public.

– New Perspective Senior Living – West Bend, formerly Lighthouse of West Bend, set a new record for Washington County donations to the Alzheimer’s Association of Southeast Wisconsin. Since the beginning of the year it has donated almost $15,000 to the local Alzheimer’s Association chapter and close to $50,000 since 2012.

– Dress in your Halloween best and trick or treat in downtown West Bend during Fall Fest, Oct. 13. Yup…. that’s Friday the 13th. A new addition to Fall Fest this year is Pumpkin Bowling. Roll a hand-sized pumpkin, knock down pins and win prizes.

-Washington County’s annual Clean Sweep is Saturday, Oct. 7 from 8 a.m. – noon at the Washington County Highway Facility, 900 Lang Street.

-The West Bend VFW Post 1393 is looking for a bar manager, full-time and part-time bartenders. Please send resumes to PO Box 982 West Bend, WI 53095.

Children’s Hospital opens pediatric clinic at Cast Iron

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin | West Bend Pediatrics is moving into the first level of the Cast Iron building, 611 Veteran Avenue. The clinic is relocating from its site on W. Washington Street and Shepherds Drive. Nurse Chelsea Kandel said the location is closer to the downtown and will provide more visibility. The clinic on Shepherds Drive opened in November 2015.

The location in the Cast Iron building will feature three doctors providing pediatric care. During Tuesday’s Plan Commission meeting a site plan for an urban design exception for a wall sign above the second story window sill at 611 Veterans Avenue will be considered.

Grace Braeger says it’s time to sell 57LADY

After 60 years behind the wheel of the same vehicle, a 1957 Chevy Bel Air, owner Grace Braeger said it’s time to sell it. “Sixty years was my goal,” said Braeger. It was 1957 when Braeger traded in her old car, put $2,250 on the counter and drove away from King Braeger in Milwaukee with her black Chevy with whitewall tires and rich red interior.

Over the years Braeger could be seen motoring around West Bend and she was an avid participant at local car shows. In August 2011 Braeger got some time in the media spotlight when she used her warranty and to get another new muffler for her vehicle.  That ’57 Chevy actually has two mufflers and Midas took pride in honoring the warranty. Braeger even has the original warranty from June 15, 1962.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Hotel, gas station and housing planned across from Fair Park

The landscape across from the Washington County Fair Park is going to look mighty different in the coming years as the Francis and Rita Peters have sold their property to a developer.

Tom Timblin and his business partner and high school friend Mike Koepke closed on the purchase of the 80.6-acre farm on the southwest corner of Pleasant Valley Road and County Highway P. “There are 14 lots right now,” said Timblin. “Four of them are commercial and 10 of them are multifamily.”

The town of Polk rezoned the property last year from farming to business/commercial. “With the commercial lots we’re hoping to get a gas station, convenience store and a hotel and some offices possibly,” said Timblin.

The property, dubbed Pleasant Valley Farms, is currently being marketed by Koepke and Emmer Real Estate Group.

Timblin and Koepke have been working on purchasing and developing the property for the past two years.

“We’re hoping to start development in 2018,” Timblin said. “It’s a unique property because there are a lot of moving parts. It’s got a West Bend address but the sewer and water is in the Village of Jackson and the property is located in the town of Polk.”

Timblin said he’s had conversations with potential hotel and gas station developers. He said, “Now we’re going to start talking in earnest to get quotes on the property.”

There is sewer on the property that was installed around 2002 to service the hospital and Fair Park. Timblin confirmed water “is close” on CTH P.

As far as the property is concerned, the location is wonderful according to Timblin. “It’s highly visible and the key is it’s by the on and off ramps at Pleasant Valley,” he said.

The purchase price for the property has not yet been released.

Farm photo of the original Peters homestead is courtesy Terry Becker/Ryan Lesperance. That farm was a bit further west where the Highway 45 bypass is located. This farm was eliminated when the bypass was constructed. The Peters farm that just sold is to the east of Highway 45.

City crews dredge weeds above Barton Dam

Public Works crews from the city of West Bend were up to their armpits in muck and weeds this week as they worked to remove vegetation from the Milwaukee River.

“We don’t want this vegetation to float down river against the dam so we’re trying to remove them as part of our dam maintenance,” said Public Works director Doug Neumann.

The process was slow as two men in a jon boat worked with a big claw-like apparatus made of rebar to hook the weeds and then a bulldozer would pull it to shore and a crane would extract the glop of mud and weeds.

Neumann worked with an aquatic biologist and the DNR. He said some of the weeds include things like canary grass and yellow flag.  “The problem is the seeds are floating,” said Neumann. “We did this a few years ago and pulled them out and the problem is the seeds are still there and we’re trying to pull the roots.”

The weeds are not attached to the bottom of the river.

Neumann said the best solution is to dredge and excavate the weeds out of the river. He said that option is over $100,000. “We decided to take a less expensive route and pull them to shore and excavate them ourselves,” he said. “This is certainly not a long-term solution.”

It took crews a while to get their system of dredging down. By the end of the day, Thursday, they were able to pull larger clumps of vegetation to shore.

Some neighbors in Barton said the grassy weed is called wild rice. They said the ducks love it and the weeds will die once cold weather hits.

Creepy coincidence during Hartford Historical Society’s Cemetery Tour

Nearly 100 people spent a warm September day exploring the Pleasant Hill Cemetery on Highway 60 as the Hartford Historical Society hosted a cemetery tour.

During the 3-hour event local historians dressed in period costume brought the dead back to life with stories of their careers, families and …. in some cases, local scandal.

“It’s an old custom where people used to come on Sunday afternoons with their picnic basket and grandma and grandpa were in the ground and the families would clean up the area and then have a picnic lunch,” said historian Jean Knoll.

Aside from the history of the cemetery, the docents also provided detail on cemetery etiquette. “When you enter the cemetery from Highway 60 you’ll notice the beautiful gates and what those represented is whenever you entered a cemetery you were leaving your world of the living and you were coming into the city of the dead and they wanted you to show the respect of the people buried there,” Knoll said.

There was also an educational element about how to care for your headstone. It was presented by Rex Melius and it had an unplanned and very creepy ending. Melius has spent hours shining up headstones and grave markers. On Saturday with spray bottle and brush in hand he was cleaning the moss, dirt and debris off the stone belonging to Irma Emmer.

The work is tedious. Each stone takes about 30 minutes to clean. After his presentation the question was asked how he picked Irma’s headstone. Without missing a beat Melius said it because she was next to Harvey. Sure enough…the stone for Harvey John Emmer was right next door.

Melius said, “That wasn’t planned… but it sure is a little creepy.” For those not up on current events – the two recent hurricanes to hit the south were named Harvey and Irma.

Man who took over Rick’s Tap in Barton has died

Allen J. “Whitey” Rick, 89, of West Bend, passed away on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, at the Clement J. Zablocki Veterans Association Hospital in Milwaukee.

Whitey was born on July 19, 1928, in Barton, the son of the late Allen and Bernadina (Tina) (Stellpflug) Rick. On June 15, 1950, he was united in marriage to Harriet Schroeder. Whitey grew up in Barton.  He proudly served his country in the U.S. Army during World War II.  In 1960, he took over the family business and operated Rick’s Tap in Barton for the next several years.  Whitey was also a volunteer fireman for the Barton Fire Department. His funeral was Friday.

Successful GERMANfest

Organizers of this year’s GERMANfest in West Bend have some great news. “We raised $70,000 net,” said GERMANfest’s Lisa Jensen. “We could not have done it without the community sponsorship’s, in-kind contributions, volunteers and participation! We have enough now to cover the material costs of a home as well as the land to build a house.”

The annual German festival in downtown West Bend is organized by Habitat for Humanity of Dodge and Washington Counties.

Neighbors ask motorists to slow down for injured crane

Neighbors on Schmidt Road in West Bend are encouraging motorists to slow down because of what appears to be an injured Sandhill Crane in the area. Kenlyn from The Sign Shop on Schmidt Road said there is a pair of Sandhill Cranes that continually cross the road and one has an injured leg. “We have been in contact with Wanakia Wildlife Rehabilitation and they are aware and are trying to help with the situation,” she said. On a side note: Sandhill Cranes mate for life.

Village of Kewaskum accepts property donation

The Kewaskum Village Board has voted unanimously to accept a donation of 31 acres from the Reigle family.

The land is on Edgewood Road and County Highway H. Early plans are to turn the parcel into a sports complex with youth soccer fields and baseball/softball diamonds.  Officials said the park would help ease overcrowding at the Kiwanis Park.

Dave Spenner, a trustee on the Village Board, said this is a great opportunity for the community.

“We are greatly indebted and thankful to the Reigle family for such a generous donation; we feel really blessed,” Spenner said. “Many of its users will participate in its development and share in the cost and it will benefit more than just the village itself.”

At the Sept. 7 listening session several neighbors were concerned about a number of things including, parking, possible trespassing, and there was a safety concern regarding the 2-acre pond on the property.

“The planners and Kewaskum athletic programs are genuinely committed to working with the neighbors to make sure this is a good experience for everyone,” said Spenner.

“We have the Milwaukee River running directly through town and we don’t fence every waterway.

“The final plans aren’t in yet. What we looked at is conceptual and there’s much more planning that needs to be done.”

The next step for the village is to execute the donation agreement with the Reigle family, zoning has to be changed from residential to recreational and an agreement has to be completed with the soccer organizations and other sports teams.

Property donor Jim Reigle has lived in Kewaskum since 1947; the gift of property is estimated at about $640,000. The village will receive about $4,000 a year in taxes from the proposed park. Funding for the park would come from private donors and corporate sponsors.

The village does not anticipate any expense to maintain the park as that job would be split between the Kewaskum Athletic Association (KAA) and the Kewaskum Youth Soccer Organization.

The village would own the land but would lease it to the Kewaskum Youth Soccer Organization and the KAA.

WBSD Facility Advisory Committee begins meeting this week

The first meeting of the West Bend School District Facility Advisory Committee is Sept. 27, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the library at Jackson Elementary, W204 N16850 Jackson Dr., Jackson. The district is exploring facility needs at Jackson Elementary School and East/West High Schools. Bray Architects won the bid at $35,000 on a 3-phase proposal to oversee the first part of the project which includes community engagement, architectural, engineering and interior design services.

Kettle Moraine Symphony prepping for a new season

A lively Thursday evening at Our Saviors Lutheran in West Bend as the Kettle Moraine Symphony held its weekly practice. Dr. Richard Hynson is the new director this year.

According to the KMS website, “Hynson is well-known in the Milwaukee area as the director of the Bel Canto Chorus and Orchestra. He has contributed to the greater Milwaukee community as conductor, published composer and teacher for the past 30 years.

His past conducting roles include serving as music director of the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra from 2006 to 2014, music director for Gathering on the Green from 2008 to 2013 and as music director and conductor of the Waukegan (IL) Symphony Orchestra from 1990 to 1998.

Hynson’s local guest conducting engagements have included performances with the Milwaukee Symphony, Skylight Opera Theatre, and the Racine, Sheboygan and Waukesha Symphony Orchestras. He has also conducted numerous other ensembles nationally and internationally.

The Kettle Moraine Symphony season begins Oct. 1.

Update & tidbits

Crossroads Music Fest is today, Saturday, Sept. 23. This year’s free Christian music event is being held at Hartford Town Hall on County Road K in Hartford. From noon – 7 p.m. there will be live music, food, a silent auction, and lots of family-friendly activities.

The Faith, Hope & Run! 5K Run/Walk is Sunday. Registration is also available Sunday starting at 10:30 a.m. Kids Race at 1:15 p.m. and 5K at 2 p.m. More information is at faithandfamilyfest.org

-Cast Iron Luxury Living in West Bend, formerly the West Bend Aluminum Company factory building, is now high-end apartments and the Apartment Owners and Managers Association (AOMA) just recognized the managers of Cast Iron with the Property Excellence Award.

Interfaith Caregivers is holding its 2017 Campfire Tea on Sunday, Oct. 8 from 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. at the Prairie Center at West Bend Mutual. The annual fundraiser helps positively impact the lives of Washington County seniors. This year’s event features celebrity waiters serving wonderful tea and scrumptious appetizers. There will also be an amazing silent auction, the very popular purse auction, and a 50/50 raffle. Tickets are $35 per person.

– A full lineup of music and outdoor fun is ahead as the Jackson Park Beer Garden gets underway Sept. 27 – Oct. 1 at Jackson Park. The festivities run from 4:30 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Officers from the West Bend Police Department performed well at the 2017 Wisconsin Professional Police Association State Police Shoot. The matches consisted of the traditional Bullseye Match, a Rifle Match, and a Sub-Compact Pistol Match. West Bend was represented by active officers Robert Lloyd and Justin Klopp and retired officers Kenneth Johnson and William Matheus. Multiple trophies and medals were received.

– Dress in your Halloween best and trick or treat in downtown West Bend during Fall Fest, Oct. 13. Yup…. that’s Friday the 13th. A new addition to Fall Fest this year is Pumpkin Bowling. Roll a hand-sized pumpkin, knock down pins and win prizes.

– More than 400 volunteers this week from more than 30 local organizations were at the kick off of the United Way of Washington County’s annual campaign. Volunteers packed 2,500 personal care (hygiene) kits for distribution through local food pantries, churches, schools, and nonprofit organizations

-Today, Sept. 23 at 1 p.m. the Kettle Moraine Ice Center and Washington County Youth Hockey Association are sponsoring a Girls Try Hockey Free Event for ages 4-14. All gear will be provided; many coaches and older skaters will be at the rink, ready and eager to help. This is a great opportunity for girls to experience firsthand a featured winter Olympics sport with no monetary commitment.

-Washington County’s annual Clean Sweep is Saturday, Oct. 7 from 8 a.m. – noon at the Washington County Highway Facility, 900 Lang Street.

-The West Bend VFW Post 1393 is looking for a bar manager, full-time and part-time bartenders. Please send resumes to PO Box 982 West Bend, WI 53095.

Theater seats have arrived at Kettle Moraine Playhouse in Slinger

They sold the event as a “flash mob” of sorts as volunteers gathered outside the Kettle Moraine Playhouse to unload a truck full of new theater seats. “Well…. they’re new to us,” said Playhouse facilities director Lyle Krueger.

The green cushioned theater seats came out of a Bible theme park in Oklahoma. “The operators didn’t get permits and when they tried to open they failed inspection and the seats went on eBay,” Krueger said. Volunteers worked for about an hour in assembly-line fashion on a steamy Friday evening unloading and stacking nearly 70 cushions, seat backs and armrests.

The former St. Paul’s Church, 204 S. Kettle Moraine Drive in Slinger, is being remodeled into an intimate 64-seat theater.  The entryway to the theater was completed by Keller, Inc.  Local contractors and Playhouse volunteers are doing a majority of the interior remodel.

The Kettle Moraine Players are on track to “open the Playhouse this fall” with a five-show season. Today volunteers will be installing the seats. The inaugural season at the Kettle Moraine Playhouse will get underway with the performance of “Blind Dating at Happy Hour” on October 20, 21, 26, 27 and 28 at 7:30 p.m., October 21 at 4 p.m., October 22, 29 at 2 p.m.

 

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Henry Sausen Jr. of Hartford is one of five veterans from Washington County on today’s Stars & Stripes Honor Flight.

Sausen Jr., 86, said he knew he was going to be drafted. “My dad took me to the bus and I said I was going to volunteer for the Marine Corps and my dad said ‘kid are you crazy?'” said Sausen. “I’d probably seen too many John Wayne movies.”

It was 1951 and Sausen was living in Shiocton. At 21 years old he was working the family farm when he went to basic training and then moved to an Army base in Fort Riley, Kansas.

“After four weeks if you weren’t cutting the grades you were gone,” said Sausen. “I managed to make it eight weeks and then they shipped us to Fort Lejeune, North Carolina.”

Sausen served on the destroyer U.S.S. Lloyd and work in reconnaissance.  Although most of his unit went overseas to serve in the Korean War, Sausen had only two months left in service and remained in the states.

After the service Sausen pursued a career in cheese making. At 24 years old he was encouraged to go to school at University of Wisconsin. He went into systems automation in the dairy and food industry.

Sausen has been to Washington D.C. before while in service.  His son John will be his guardian.

Others on today’s Honor Flight to Washington D.C. include Korean War veteran and Morse code interceptor Dennis Bingen of Kewaskum,  Vietnam War Navy veteran Thomas Gentz of Germantown, Vietnam War Army veteran Dennis Muench of West Bend and Korean War Army combat veteran Erv Wicklander of Colgate.

Archbishop Jerome Listecki helps St. Mary’s celebrate 160 years

Hundreds of people filled the pews at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton on Sunday, Sept. 10 for a Mass with Archbishop Jerome Listecki as the church on Jefferson Street celebrated its 160th anniversary.

Dressed in green vestments with a violet zucchetto the Archbishop talked about “coming together as a community” and “trust.”

“What we have today is because of the sacrifices made by so many in the past,” said Listecki.

Whitey Uelmen has been a member at St. Mary’s since 2000 and his family has been part of the parish since 1969. “This was really a neat celebration and Rev. Nathan did a great job putting this together,” said Uelmen. “We were really, truly honored to have the Archbishop attend this ceremony and put his blessing on the church.”

Hannah Helmbrecht, an eighth grader at Badger Middle School, was one of six servers at the Mass. “We signed up and had a few practices,” said Helmbrecht.  “I was really honored to be able to serve with the Archbishop. This was just really, really cool.”

Rita Dricken, 89, was baptized and married at St. Mary’s Parish. “There was a lot of community feeling when I started with the church,” Dricken said. “The Archbishop had a wonderful understanding of why we’re celebrating and he gave a lot of credit to the founders.”

During Mass the altar at St. Mary’s was crowded with familiar faces including Rev. Enrique Hernandez, Rev. Justin Lopina, Rev. Nathan Reesman and Rev. Patrick Heppe from Holy Angels Parish in West Bend.

During communion the choir sang “One Bread One Body.” After Mass the Archbishop thanked everyone for their participation including the servers, ushers, choir and the Knights of Columbus.

West Bend teen donates stuffed animals to St. Joe’s Hospital

Savanna Rose Bonlender hobbled through the emergency room doors at St. Joseph’s Hospital in the Town of Polk today with a brace on her knee and carrying huge plastic bags crammed full of stuffed animals.

It was the culmination of the 3rd annual Savanna Rose Teddy Bear drive from the West Bend Farmers’ Market.

For the past few years Savanna Rose, 17, has been collecting tips from her performance at the downtown market and using the money to purchase teddy bears and stuffed animals for Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. Savanna heard there was a need for stuffed animals in the ER at St. Joseph’s/Froedtert in West Bend and this year she chose to donate to both hospitals.

On Wednesday afternoon, joined by Jerry Beine from Modern Woodmen, Savannah Rose was greeted by nurses from St. Joes who helped bring the gifts into the hospital.

“I am hoping to become a nurse practitioner and I really enjoy helping others and I eventually would like to help people medically but is the best I can do getting into a hospital setting,” said Savanna.

In her first year Savanna collected about $500 to buy toys and art supplies for Children’s Hospital. This year she raised more than double that collecting $806 in three hours. Jerry Beine of Modern Woodmen of America said he would like to help and chipped in a $300 donation to raise the total to $1,106 this year.

Anne Zuern is manager of Ambulatory Surgical Services at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin. “This is just a wonderful donation,” said Zuern. “Especially from someone so young… you just don’t see that a lot.”

Savanna will be starting college next year and majoring in nursing with hopes of becoming a pediatric nurse practitioner.

Update on Pizza Ranch

It’s probably the most frequent question these days…. “What’s the latest on Pizza Ranch?”

The last update was Aug. 2 when the West Bend Plan Commission unanimously approved a site plan for architectural building changes and minor parking lot alterations to the location, 2020 W. Washington Street. That site is the old Ponderosa location owned by Steve Kilian.

“There’s no limit to the amount of congratulations we can give you and hopefully this is the one that makes it happen,” said Mayor Kraig Sadownikow during the August meeting.

Matt and Stacy Gehring are the local owners of Pizza Ranch West Bend LLC. Kilian confirmed during a phone call Wednesday that they will close on the sale of the building in the next two weeks. Kilian indicated the deal is on track and was confident the sale will close.

So far there’s no timetable on how long the remodel will take, however the Gehrings indicated it will be quicker to remodel than start with new construction. Stay tuned!

Wedding gifts stolen from Fillmore Turner Hall

 

The Washington County Sheriff is investigating a theft following a wedding Saturday night at Fillmore Turner Hall. According to the sheriff the couple from Newburg, Lance Rohan and Jennifer Falter, got married on Saturday, Sept. 9, and presents from the wedding were loaded into a vehicle.

 

It is believed someone entered the unlocked vehicle just after midnight. Jenny said their gift box was roughly a 3.5-foot x 2.5-foot chest. It was heavy and incredibly ostentatious.

 

“At the end of the night our sober best man carried it out to our parent’s vehicle. It was the absolute last thing loaded, and other gifts were moved on top of it,” she said. “Our parents stepped inside the door to say goodbye with the vehicle parked less than 10 feet away, and in less than five minutes their vehicle was opened, the other gifts were tossed off the top, and the chest was removed. It was not taken due to a lack of care.

 

“We would like to be clear that our reason for agreeing to speak with media is not because we would like any monetary handouts. We DO NOT have a Go Fund Me page and have absolutely no interest in starting one. Bad things happen and you deal with it and move on.

 

Our only motivation is that we would like to know if this has happened to anyone else (besides the Mayville wedding), and if so, we would really appreciate them reaching out to us.

 

This is the second time within about a month wedding gifts were stolen from a vehicle during a reception. Last month, August 19, in neighboring Dodge County gifts were stolen from a truck as a wedding reception wrapped up at the Mayville Golf Course.  Mayville Police are offering a $1,500 reward.

 

More than 80 customers scammed at local grocery   

 

A 19-year-old West Bend man is facing felony charges in Washington County Court in connection with allegedly stealing money/identity from the store or customers and then converting it into gift cards for himself.

 

The criminal complaint alleges Alexander Deaton worked at Pick ‘n Save north and used the company’s “make it right” return policy to enter in fraudulent returns and swap it out for gift cards. West Bend police said about 80 customer complaints have been filed.

 

One victim, who prefers to remain anonymous, said she spent two days at her bank trying to straighten out the damage to her account. The manager at Pick ‘n Save confirmed the scam and confirmed the employee has been terminated.

 

According to the criminal complaint Deaton allegedly found a way to complete returns without items actually being returned and he would do fraudulent returns and put the money obtained from the return on Amazon and MasterCard gift cards and that each gift card had a different value. Deaton did not have permission from anyone to take the money from Pick ‘n Save North

 

The complaint said Deaton told police he started stealing money from Pick ‘n Save sometime in late March 2017 to about July 7, 2017 and he would enter in returns and put the money in to Amazon or MasterCard gift cards and he would do this twice a week. He would also do returns and get cash back. Deaton said he accumulated about $30,000 while doing this and spent a good portion of the money on random things.

 

The defendant used the “make it right” program code at multiple registers some showing he entered approximately $3195.25 under the paper bag refund. He would enter in multiple paper bag refunds and some transactions and then cash out and remove whatever total he had entered and then place that amount of cash in his pocket.

 

Deaton is due in Judge Todd Martens court for arraignment on October 10, 2017.

 

Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt to close in West Bend

 

Quite a few changes with regard to frozen dairy treats in the West Bend area over the past few months/years. Remember when West Bend had two Dairy Queens? Those stores closed in 2014.

A couple weeks ago the Moehr family transitioned Toucan Custard to new owners and now Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt is closing.

 

A note was posted on the door of the store on Thursday, 1733 S. Main Street in West Bend.

 

“It is with sadness we inform you we have to close the store location permanently effective September 17. We have been negotiating new lease terms with the landlord for the past 6 to 8 weeks and they informed us as of last night they are no longer willing to move forward with the terms we agreed upon. We want to give the public as much notice so you may come in to redeem any coupons gift cards etc. These will still all be valid at all the other Menchie’s locations.”

 

Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt and its predecessor have had a tough go of it in West Bend.  Cherry Berry Self-Serve Frozen Yogurt opened in West Bend in February 2013. That switched over to Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt in January 2015 and now Menchie’s is closing up shop.

 

This afternoon Shannon Lehnerz and Brooke Tilidetzke were the only customers in the store. They were both a little bummed the store would be closing. “We’ve been coming here since it was Cherry Berry,” said Lehnerz. “It’s sad.”

 

Kettle Moraine Symphony preps for 2017-2018 season

 

A lively Thursday evening at Our Saviors Lutheran in West Bend as the Kettle Moraine Symphony held its weekly practice. Dr. Richard Hynson is the new director this year.

 

According to the KMS website, “Hynson is well-known in the Milwaukee area as the director of the Bel Canto Chorus and Orchestra. He has contributed to the greater Milwaukee community as conductor, published composer and teacher for the past 30 years.

 

His past conducting roles include serving as music director of the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra from 2006 to 2014, music director for Gathering on the Green from 2008 to 2013 and as music director and conductor of the Waukegan (IL) Symphony Orchestra from 1990 to 1998.

 

Hynson’s local guest conducting engagements have included performances with the Milwaukee Symphony, Skylight Opera Theatre, and the Racine, Sheboygan and Waukesha Symphony Orchestras. He has also conducted numerous other ensembles nationally and internationally.

 

For Kettle Moraine Symphony, Hynson has created programs audiences will not want to miss, and the orchestra is eager to begin the 2017-18 season with him at the helm.

 

The KMS season begins Oct. 1.

 

Paying tribute to historian Irene Blau of Germantown

 

On Saturday, Sept. 16 at 3 p.m. an exhibit will be unveiled by the Germantown Historical Society to honor Irene Blau and her 35 years of service. Blau has been actively involved in the community since moving to Germantown in 1963. Blau will be honored during a ceremony at the Christ Church starting at 3 p.m. There will be light refreshments and at 5 p.m. there will be the traditional ringing of the church bell that used to call farmers in from the fields marking the end of the work day. Saturday’s event is free and open to the public.

 

No Halloween Express in West Bend this year

 

Halloween Express will not have a store in West Bend this season. Owner James M. Purvis Sr. said the former Walgreens location at S.Main and Decorah is under contract by Kwik Trip. The good news is there are two locations in the Washington County area. One is at 1520 E. Sumner Street /Hwy 60 in Hartford. The store is next to Sal’s Pizza and Piggly Wiggly. The other shop is in Menomonee Falls at N96W18930 County Line Road next to World Market and Petco. It’s eight blocks west on County Line Road and Hwy 41/45.  Purvis said there’s also no Halloween Express in Fond du Lac this year.

 

Cobblestone Hotel breaks ground in Hartford

 

Groundbreaking in Hartford this week as Cobblestone Hotel celebrated its newest addition. The hotel on Highway 60/ 110 E. Sumner Street will be built along with Wissota Chop House restaurant.

 

Jeremy Griesbach, a 1992 graduate of Hartford Union High School, is the president of development with BriMark Builders, LLC a division of Cobblestone Builders. He felt there’s always been a missing piece to the hotel puzzle in Hartford.

 

“For the past 20 years of so I’ve always thought we were missing that business hotel in town and that quality lodging,” Griesbach said. “We were always losing those people to the surrounding communities and anytime somebody doesn’t stay here they’re not eating here or buying gas here and now we’re finally getting something done.”

 

There were a number of local business leaders that gathered in the empty lot on Park Avenue across from the Jack Russell Memorial Library including Hartford mayor Tim Michalak, city administrator Steve Volkert, and Hartford Chamber executive director Scott Hanke who said the development is definitely a “shot in the arm for the community.”

 

“This especially helps with tourism as we now have places to stay and play as well as another dining option and 60 more rooms,” he said.

 

The city of Hartford will give Cobblestone Builders an incentive of $650,000 when hotel occupancy is approved. Cobblestone basically purchased the property for $1. Griesbach said their deal with the city includes a commitment of “a minimum of $110,000 in property taxes a year for the next 10 years.”

 

Brian Wogernese is with Cobblestone Builders. “Since 2015 we’ve been talking about adding more lodging for business clientele here in Hartford,” said Wogernese.

 

City administrator Volkert, dressed in a brilliant orange tie, said “this is a good first step to development of the TID.”

 

“This will hopefully lead to more development because it’s like keeping up with the Jonses in the downtown; hopefully this steamrolls,” said Volkert.

 

Contractors have already broken ground on the project, which is just a block east of The Mineshaft. Wogernese said they’re working to get the “footings in before winter and start framing.” The project should be finished by summer 2018.

 

Updates & tidbits

– Kevin Steiner – CEO of West Bend Mutual and 2017 Campaign Chair, and 400+ volunteers from more than 30 local organizations will kick off the United Way of Washington County’s annual campaign on Thursday, Sept. 21 from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. at the Washington County Fair Park. Volunteers will be packaging 2,500 personal care (hygiene) kits for distribution through local food pantries, churches, schools, and nonprofit organizations.

– Three students from the West Bend School District scored super high on the state of Wisconsin PSAT exam. The smarty pants include Jacob Beine, Liam Hupfer and Olivia McClain who have been named semifinalists for the National Merit Scholarship.

– Delta Defense LLC, based in West Bend, and the City of West Bend received a Business Retention & Expansion Award at the 3rd annual Community and Economic Development Awards banquet, held at Edgewater Hotel in Madison. This award recognizes efforts in which a community successfully mobilized to retain and/or expand a business. Winning projects demonstrate extensive cross-community collaboration and the ability to adapt and respond quickly to unforeseen events within the last three years.

– On Sept. 23 at 1 p.m. the Kettle Moraine Ice Center and Washington County Youth Hockey Association are sponsoring a Girls Try Hockey Free Event for ages 4-14. All gear will be provided; many coaches and older skaters will be at the rink, ready and eager to help. This is a great opportunity for girls to experience firsthand a featured winter Olympics sport with no monetary commitment.

-The 19th Annual Richfield Historical Society Thresheree is Sept. 16 and 17 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. There will be wonderful family-fun activities including a live auction, tractor parade, and kids can build a scarecrow.

-One of the largest car shows in Washington County is Sunday, Sept. 17 in Kewaskum. Muscle cars, vintage, hot rods and racers. The show runs 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. and is in downtown Kewaskum, just to the east of Fond du Lac Avenue.

-A full lineup of music and outdoor fun is ahead as the Jackson Park Beer Garden gets underway September 27 – October 1 at Jackson Park. The festivities will run from 4:30 p.m. – 9 p.m.

-Washington County’s annual Clean Sweep is Saturday, Oct. 7 from 8 a.m. – noon at the Washington County Highway Facility, 900 Lang Street.

-The West Bend VFW Post 1393 is looking for a bar manager, full-time and part-time bartenders. Please send resumes to PO Box 982 West Bend, WI 53095

– Crossroads Music Fest is Saturday, Sept. 23. This year’s free Christian music event is being held at Hartford Town Hall on County Road K in Hartford. From noon – 7 p.m. there will be live music, food, a silent auction, and lots of family-friendly activities.

On a history note

A bit of a face lift for the old firehouse in Barton as the building from 1921 gets a new paint job. Some neighbors were concerned whether the Build, Boost & Buy Barton ad will return to the side of the building, 1411 N. Main Street. Building owner Terry Vrana took time Monday night to trace the ad on a big piece of plastic. Vrana then signed off on a note on the side of the building. Vrana said the Build, Boost & Buy in Barton will be back. On a history note: Good Shepherd Lutheran Church recently broke ground on a new addition for the church/school on Indiana Avenue and Decorah Road. When the church first started it held its services in the firehouse in Barton.

 

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Washington County Fair officials react to death of Troy Gentry

Neighbors in Washington County are stunned by the news of the death on Friday, Sept. 8 of Troy Gentry from the country duo Montgomery Gentry.

According to a Twitter post from @mgunderground, the 50-year-old Gentry “was tragically killed in a helicopter crash which took place at approximately 1 p.m. today in Medford, New Jersey.”

Montgomery Gentry headlined the Silver Lining Amphitheater on July 27 during the Washington County Fair.

Washington County Fair Park executive director Kellie Boone said, “All of us at the Washington County Fair Park were deeply shocked and saddened to hear about Troy Gentry.  We were fortunate to have them at the Fair twice in the last several years. They were so nice to work with and very genuine about having fun on stage for their fans. Our thoughts are with their family, friends, and fans.”

160th anniversary celebration Sunday at St. Mary’s Immaculate Parish in Barton

Archbishop Jerome Listecki will join honored guests at 9:30 a.m. for a 160th anniversary Mass and celebration on Sunday, Sept.10 at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton. Following Mass there will be a breakfast in the Parish Center and the unveiling of the new interior church design.

West Bend crossing guard bouncing back from accident

West Bend crossing guard Phyllis Wendt was extremely lucky this week following a two-vehicle accident at Seventh Avenue and Decorah Road. Witnesses said the accident happened about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday as two vehicles collided, jumped the curb and Wendt, 92, dove out of the way.

Wendt was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital. West Bend Police “determined a 35-year-old male driver was southbound on S. Seventh Avenue and stopped for the stop sign at W. Decorah Road.

The male proceeded from his stop and struck a vehicle eastbound on W. Decorah Road. The vehicle that was struck was driven by a 36-year-old female from West Bend. There were no injuries to the drivers or occupants of the vehicles that collided. The investigating officer issued the 35-year-old male a citation for Failure to Yield Right of Way.

Wendt said the doctor told her to take it easy. During a visit at her University Drive apartment on Thursday we spent about 30 minutes reading everybody’s nice notes and well wishes. Phyllis laughed at the note from the woman who said she was the best babysitter and now her son is 39 years old.

Phyllis said the intersection of Seventh and Decorah is pretty dicey and she reminded motorists to slow down. Phyllis also wants to tell everybody “thank you” for the prayers and well wishes.

Plan Commission questions Kwik Trip about store No. 2

The West Bend Plan Commission had quite a few concerns about the development of a Kwik Trip gas station/convenience store on the corner of Decorah and Main Street in West Bend in the location formerly home to Walgreens.

During the Tuesday night meeting commissioner Jed Dolnick listed off a number of issues he presumed could cause safety and traffic problems. “From a business standpoint it’s a perfect location but this is not in the best interest of the city,” he said.

Dolnick questioned traffic patterns of a gas station combined with the high volume of vehicles from the schools and the location of the driveways onto Fifth Avenue.

Fellow commissioner Jim White had concerns about traffic congestion and he gave the example of the backup when exiting onto Decorah from the West Bend Plaza shopping center.

Neighbor Karen Wachholz addressed the Plan Commission about several of her concerns regarding the development, much of which dealt with construction noise and music and speaker announcements from the station attendants.

After about 20 minutes of presentation and discussion the Plan Commission voted to table its decision until a traffic study was completed by Kwik Trip.

MOWA unveils design for Cultural Center

Architect Jim Shields took members of the West Bend Plan Commission on a great virtual tour of the proposed Cultural Campus at the Museum of Wisconsin Art. There are two acres of vacant land just south of MOWA and plans are to add mature trees and flower beds and have a paved walkway that flows gracefully from the bridges over the Milwaukee River through the park and to the museum or the Eisenbahn State Trail.

Some of the plants on Veterans Avenue and Water Street include white oak, flowering pear, sugar maple, hydrangea beds and an aspen grove. Following the presentation Plan Commission member Jim White asked who would be paying for the park and maintaining it and Shields said MOWA would take care of it. A date for construction has yet to be determined.

Bank Mutual to consolidate with Associated Bank

There’s more movement in the banking industry and it is probably going to affect the landscape in West Bend. According to an article in the Biz Times the Bank Mutual branch in West Bend is one of 36 branches in Wisconsin that will be consolidating with Associated Banc-Corp.

According to the Biz Times “The companies plan to close 28 Bank Mutual branches and eight Associated Bank branches.”

In a July 20, 2017 release, Associated Banc-Corp (“Associated”) and Bank Mutual Corporation (“Bank Mutual”) jointly announced they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Bank Mutual will merge with and into Associated.

The Biz Times published a list of branches in Wisconsin that will be affected.

Bank Mutual, 1526 S. Main Street in West Bend, is one of 28 branches that will consolidate with Associated. The receiving branch is the Associated Bank, 715 W. Paradise Drive.

So far there is no timeline on the deal however the Biz Times is reporting “the transaction could close in the first quarter of 2018.”

On a history note:  Paradise Auto Wash sold Nov. 23, 2013

Paradise Auto Wash has been sold. Associated Bank bought the property at 715 W. Paradise Drive for $1.15 million. According to the minutes from the Plan Commission meeting the Green Bay-based Associated will raze the carwash and build a 3,830 square-foot bank.

Other Associated Bank locations in Washington County are on Highway 60 in Jackson and Slinger and another in Germantown.

Doug Pesch owned the car wash. “I bought it with a couple other partners in 1996 and sold the house and garage on the property for $1,” said Pesch. That house was moved to Alpine Road and later that year Pesch built the five-bay carwash. The 2013 assessment was $486,200.

Village of Kewaskum reviews land donation

More than 150 people crowded into the Municipal Annex building in Kewaskum on Wednesday night to take part in a discussion on whether the village should accept a donation of 31 acres from the Reigle family.

The land is on Edgewood Road and County Highway H. Early plans are to turn it into a sports complex with youth soccer fields and baseball/softball diamonds.  Officials said the park would help ease overcrowding at the Kiwanis Park.

Some highlights from the meeting in Kewaskum:

Quite a few neighbors were concerned about parking, kids walking through their yards to get to the park, the safety of the 2-acre pond, who would maintain the park, will there be lights and night games, what’s the potential cost to the village, and how many mature trees will be removed.

Bob Zarling spoke from the heart. “The motto of the Kiwanis Club is to help the children of the town, one child at a time. Jim Reigle has been a member of Kiwanis for over 50 years and he’s been a very generous supporter. Jim has lived here since 1947 and he’s had his kids in school here and he kept his factory here and he loved the village and to turn down a gift of about $640,000 would be a real slap in the face to a man who has given his life to this community.”

The village will receive about $4,000 a year in taxes from the proposed park.

Funding for the park would come from private donors and corporate sponsors.

The village does not anticipate any expense to maintain the park as that job would be split between the Kewaskum Athletic Association (KAA) and the Kewaskum Youth Soccer Organization.

The village would own the land but would lease it to the Kewaskum Youth Soccer Organization and the KAA.

The early drawings of the proposed park were deemed “a concept plan” as the design is expected to change.

One board member said quite a bit of money could be raised by selling the timber on the property.

The overall feeling in the room appeared to be support for the project…. but many aspects of the proposed plan still needed to be determined.

The Village Board will vote on Monday, Sept. 18 whether to accept the donation. If approved the Village Board will then have to apply for rezoning the land from residential to park/institutional.

New tenants announced for strip mall on S. Main Street

An intimate groundbreaking this week at1721-1775 S. Main Street in West Bend as officials from Inland Real Estate made their new strip mall project official.

Larry Sajdak, Executive Vice President – Leasing at Inland Commercial Real Estate Services, talked about the 7,200-square-foot addition that’s being built by American Construction Services Inc. of West Bend.

Sajdak outlined a couple new businesses that would be moving in including ATI Physical Therapy, Cricket Wireless (which is currently located inside GameStop on Paradise Drive), and a nail salon. Sajdak said they are also in talks with Firehouse Subs and they should lock in that deal shortly.  “These businesses will really help drive a lot of business to the area,” he said. “The stores are necessity based and Internet resilient.”

Sajdak said they are currently in discussion with Kroger regarding the former Grimm’s Dollar Express on the north side of the grocery store. Sajdak mentioned a “fuel pad” but said it’s “very early in the conversation.”

National Guard soldiers from West Bend to deploy this month

Nearly 30 Wisconsin Army National Guard Soldiers will deploy to the Middle East in support of Operation Spartan Shield this fall. An element of the West Bend, Wisconsin-based Detachment one, Company B, 248th Aviation Support Battalion is deploying to the Middle East with UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter maintenance support personnel.

The unit’s Soldiers have trained extensively for this deployment, focusing on aircraft maintenance and their standard soldiering skills. Soldiers from the 248th Aviation have deployed overseas multiple times in support of military operations since Sept. 11, 2001, including in 2010-11 to Iraq and 2006-07 to Kosovo.

The Wisconsin National Guard is currently planning a sendoff ceremony for the deploying soldiers and will announce those details as the unit’s deployment draws near.

Girls try hockey FREE Event at Kettle Moraine Ice Center

On Sept. 23 at 1 p.m. the Kettle Moraine Ice Center and Washington County Youth Hockey Association are sponsoring a Girls Try Hockey Free Event for ages 4-14. All gear will be provided; many coaches and older skaters will be at the rink, ready and eager to help. This is a great opportunity for girls to experience firsthand a featured winter Olympics sport with no monetary commitment.

Public meeting Sept. 14 on reconstruction CTH P

The Washington County Highway Department will be reconstructing County Trunk Highway P from State Highway 60 north to Woodland Drive in the Village and Town of Jackson in 2018.

The project area will be designed to meet current and future traffic needs and improve the safety for the traveling public. The roadway will be closed to through traffic during construction. A public meeting will be held on Thursday, Sept. 14, 2017 at the Gathering Hall at the Jackson Community Center (N165 W20330 Hickory Lane) from 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Updates & tidbits

-Cobblestone Hotels will host a ground breaking for its newest addition to the Cobblestone Family and Wissota Chop House in Hartford on Wednesday, Sept. 13 at 11 a.m.

– There will be a groundbreaking Sunday, Sept. 10 at 9:15 a.m. at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church (WELS)  in West Bend as the church/school prepares for a $3.2 million expansion. The expansion will include four additional school classrooms, renovated bathrooms, and a new welcome center. The groundbreaking is open to the public; everyone is reminded to bring their own shovel.

-The 19th Annual Richfield Historical Society Thresheree is Sept. 16 and 17 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. There will be wonderful family-fun activities including a live auction, tractor parade, and kids can build a scarecrow.

-Washington County’s annual Clean Sweep is Saturday, Oct. 7 from 8 a.m. – noon at the Washington County Highway Facility, 900 Lang Street.

-The West Bend VFW Post 1393 is looking for a bar manager, full-time and part-time bartenders. Please send resumes to PO Box 982 West Bend, WI 53095

– Crossroads Music Fest is Saturday, Sept. 23. This year’s free Christian music event is being held at Hartford Town Hall on County Road K in Hartford. From noon – 7 p.m. there will be live music, food, a silent auction, and lots of family-friendly activities.

-The last big bash of the summer is Saturday night, Sept. 9 at the Boltonville Fire Department. The Street Dance starts at 5 p.m. with food and refreshments. There is an $8 donation at the door to see Rebel Grace. Proceeds benefit the volunteer Fire Department.

West Bend Elevator celebrates 70th anniversary with a few hundred friends

The crew at West Bend Elevator rolled out the red carpet for hundreds of guests to help the Gonring / Kratz family celebrate the 70th anniversary of the West Bend Elevator.

Farmers, vendors and friends were treated to an open bar, as well as Nesco’s full of thick slices of steak. Many in attendance spent the evening recounting their affiliation with the mill and memories about owner Johnny Kratz. “I was three years old when my parents bought the mill,” said Joyce (Kratz) Gonring referencing the purchase by Johnny and Grace Kratz in 1947.

Johnny Kratz got his start working at Thiel’s Mill in Slinger. “When Mr. Thiel’s son came out of the service my dad knew there wasn’t room for two young men to be in that company and he went to West Bend,” said Gonring.

The mill was a lifestyle for the Kratz’s. Joyce recalled her youth of being underfoot, her mother driving truck and, as a teen, how her dad called on the boy down the street, 15-year-old Dave Gonring.

“I was outside my home on N. Ninth Avenue in West Bend, the Kratz’s lived one house over and Joyce came up and said my dad wants to talk to you,” said Dave Gonring.

“I went down to see what he wanted and he asked if I wanted a job. I think he wanted to find out if I was good enough to take his daughter out.” Shortly thereafter, in 1957, Dave Gonring stepped into the elevator business.

“I had yet to acquire a driver’s license so I was assigned to shovel off trucks, unload cars and I learned how to tie a miller’s knot; I was a dumb city kid ya know,” said Dave Gonring.

Those were the days when the elevator’s primary business was grinding feed, corn and small grains, later shipped in bags.

For 120 years the elevator was located on a modest site at 204 Wisconsin St.

Neighboring businesses included Kasten Oil to the south of the mill, Standard Oil, Brittingham & Hixon Lumber Company, Gehl Company, Cooley Box Factory, Cooley International, Enger Kress, White House Milk and Home Lumberyard to the north.

There were dedicated employees at the West Bend Elevator like Herbie Melbinger, Syl Van Beek, and Ira Weber Jr. The mill was a gathering place in town and John Kratz new ‘99.9 percent of his customers by name.’

“He was a jolly man,” said Loran Butzlaff of Kewaskum. “I knew him for over 50 years; he had a good reputation and was a good businessman.”

Joyce Gonring, 74, recalled the challenges of operating alongside the Chicago and North Western Railway. “It would just be forever when they were moving trains and how long it would take to get across Highway 33 to the elevator,” she said.

Active in the community and on the County Board, John Kratz knew he was hemmed in downtown and had the foresight to invest in seven parcels by, what was then a two-lane road called Highway 45.

“The West Bend Elevator had no room for expansion and that was very much in the plans,” said Joyce Gonring.

In May of 1980 the West Bend Elevator completed the move to its current location on Hwy D.

In January 1987, John Kratz passed away and Dave, 75, and Joyce Gonring took over the business.

“We have about 700,000 bushels of storage now in our silos,” said Dave Gonring. “We’re up to 31 employees and we like to hold these gatherings just to show appreciation for all the people who have shown their support all these years.”

The sad part, according to Dave, is all the people that are missing. He hesitates to start listing names including Tony and Bud Goebel. “Those fellas were from up in the Holy Land,” said Dave. To this day the West Bend Elevator has been staffed by four generations of the Kratz/Gonring family and the Elevator has stayed true to its mission statement instilling a tradition of dedication to customers and providing them with the high quality supplies and service.     History photo courtesy West Bend Elevator

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Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Cedar Community Campus expansion in discussion phase

The Town of West Bend Plan Commission and Big Cedar Lake Protection and Rehabilitation District discussed a proposed expansion on the Cedar Lake Campus on County Road Z by Cedar Community Campus.

On Wednesday night about 100 people turned out for the Big Cedar Lake Protection and Rehabilitation District annual meeting where a similar discussion took place as Cedar Community explores whether to build 42 single-family homes and two buildings with a dozen units each of independent/assisted apartments.

Cedar Community CEO Lynn Olson said they’ve been in “very preliminary talks with the Town Plan Commission about potential new housing on the Big Cedar Lake Campus” just west of County Highway Z. “This campus is all covered by a conditional use permit and every time you amend that permit it has to be done by the appropriate process,” Olson said.

The expansion plan was initially floated in May 2017 and then brought back again in June 2017.

Meeting minutes from June showed some concerns by the Plan Commission: A schematic of the campus detailing proposed dwelling sites was distributed to commission members prior to the meeting, as well as a record of past conditional use permits issued since 1967.

The presentation included facts and figures citing a 245-acre campus, 10 acres wetlands, 4 acres retention ponds, and 8.23 acres of building footprint.  The need for expansion was measured by forecasted increasing demand for senior housing in Washington County, as well as the need for increased revenue to offset losses due to Medicaid under funding, and subsidies for independent living residents who run out of money.

It was also noted that expansion would allow the ministry to reach more people. With Washington County as the seventh fastest growing Wisconsin county, forecasted trends in long-term care and senior living were then described.

It was maintained that the Cedar Campus offers existing roadways, utilities, a unique natural setting, highest consumer demand, and the broadest continuum of care including independent, assisted, skilled, home and hospice care.  A summary of the Cedar Community’s economic benefit to the overall community was described. This was followed by a description of the 15 year master plan in three phases.

Phase 1; 7 homes in Kettle Heights, 8 homes in new Lodge Lane Village, 6 homes in North Village, 3 homes in new Lakeside Village. Phase 2; 20 homes in Moraine Village East, 4 homes in Lakeside Village. Phase 3; 8 homes on extended Lodge Lane, 16 homes in Moraine Village West, 4 homes in Lakeside Village, 8 single or 24 hybrid homes in new Heritage Village.

Proposed are 84-100 new units.

Some discussion followed regarding sewer capacity both with the existing force main and the City of West Bend’s potential accommodation.  Moore indicated that within a 15-year window 170 homes would be sited on the property and expressed concern about precedent.

Moore also discussed the prospect of fire suppression in newly constructed dwellings. Some questions as to future plans to sell or subdivide were expressed. Concern about runoff to the south across German Village Road was also expressed. And, past experience with fire calls were discussed.

It was noted by Town Chairman Jim Heipp that the town annual budget approximates $950,000 with $550,000 dedicated to fire contracts and fire related costs with neighboring municipalities, and that about half of the annual fire calls are generated from the Cedar Lake Home campus.

This put forth in the context of the general property tax exemption. Noted also was that vehicular access to both German Village Road and Paradise Drive are not planned.

Todd Maclay asked about lake pier placement on the eight proposed lakefront dwellings, and indicated that the parcel’s primary environmental corridors need to be mapped. Maclay then read an excerpt from a letter dated 6/8/1988 written by Rev. L.C. Riesch to the West Bend Town Board indicating that the Cedar Lake Home had no intention to construct additional single family residential retirement dwellings upon the Home’s property in the Town of West Bend.

Maclay further noted the area between the existing villages and German Village Road had intended to be a buffer, and that the campus riparian lands are some of the last remaining substantial vestiges of open space/natural areas on Big Cedar other than those surrounding Gilbert Lake.

Some discussion followed regarding the intent of these proposals, and what is being presented is substantially different than that of a month ago. Further discussion ensued as to how the proposal might be modified in future meetings.

During Wednesday night’s meeting, neighbors on Big Cedar Lake and from the Town expressed mixed reviews on the proposal. Scott Rolfs, a lifelong resident on the lake, praised Cedar Community for being a “big asset to the community” but he had some concerns about it’s consistent desire to expand. “This is really now more of an adult-lifestyle community … and it concerns me this could someday be similar to the Lake Lawn Lodge Marina.”

Steve Simon also spoke from a property owners association position. “We have a tool that can protect green acres around the lake,” he said.

Representatives from Cedar Community have met with neighbors along County Highway Z and those around the lake. “We’re still in the early parts of an exploratory process,” said Olson.  “We’re trying to listen, articulate our position and develop a plan we think works for Cedar Community, the neighbors and the town.”

 

Olson said neighbors are mostly concerned about nature and preservation and maintaining the lake appearance and the natural character. “We think we’ll be right in step of maintaining the character,” he said.

No formal presentation has been made to the Plan Commission yet. “One thing I can say is none of our proposals involves lakefront development,” said Olson.

Other concerns neighbors brought up during the PRD meeting included the amount of slips being proposed as compared to the amount of lake frontage Cedar Community owned. They also wanted to know what sewer and water systems they used (it was city sewer and well water).

During the Wednesday night meeting a copy of some key points of the Cedar Community proposal were passed out to the audience.

Olson said Cedar Communities Village Homes are “typically full with a waiting list.”

There are currently 85 Village Homes.

During a June meeting Town Chairman Jim Heipp had questions about emergency calls in the town and how that factored into the demand from the residents at Cedar Community.

A record search shows: The Town paid $519,913 for fire protection in 2016.

Cedar Community paid $5,100 for 6 fire calls from 2016. Cedar Community also made a $12,500 donation in 2016.

A document provided by the Town clerk shows the number of fire and EMS calls in the Town of West Bend and Cedar Community.

Olson said he is “just being patient through this process” and as soon as all the data is gathered a presentation will be made to the Plan Commission.

“We’re not pushing this at all we just want to make sure people are fully informed,” he said.  “We hope to present a final plan in the coming months that will reflect all of that input.”

Following Thursday’s Plan Commission meeting, Olson indicated they would be ready to again discuss the project near the end of September.

West Bend West senior auditions for Milwaukee Idol

A heck of a night for West Bend West High School senior Madelyn Koepp as she was one of the top 60 chosen to audition for WISN Milwaukee Idol.  Koepp, 17, spent much of the day on Thursday at auditions at the Mitchel Park Domes in Milwaukee. “I sang Everybody’s Got Somebody But Me by Hunter Hayes,” said Koepp. “I was a little nervous but more excited than anything. The girls I was grouped with were so nice.”

“I was not selected for a front-of-the-line pass for Chicago but I can still audition in Chicago,” said Koepp.

“Performing today was so amazing; I’ve wanted to do this since I was like 8 years old. It was a dream come true just to put myself out there and actually get this chance Being on camera was so crazy too; I felt so out of place but all the girls with me were so nice.”

Out of 60 performers five were chosen by celebrity judges and allowed to be first in line when American Idol debuts Sept, 11 in Chicago.

Second Kwik Trip for WB to be discussed at Tuesday Plan Commission

Designs and a layout for a second Kwik Trip in West Bend will go before Plan Commission next week Tuesday, Sept. 5.

On July 19, WashingtonCountyInsider.com was the only local news outlet to report a second Kwik Trip coming to West Bend.

Hans Zietlow, director of real estate for Kwik Trip, said they have a piece of property currently under contract and they’re working through the process. The property is the former Walgreens, 806 S. Main Street in West Bend.

According to the city:

-Kwik Trip will be leveling the building and removing all the asphalt in the parking lot.

-The new building will be smaller than the current Walgreens; the front of the building will face S. Main Street.

-There will be a canopy with five islands and 25 pumps running parallel to S. Main Street.

-The driveway on S. Main is 220.84-feet from Decorah Road.

-The driveways will remain the same with one entrance/exit onto S. Main and the same two driveways out the back onto Fifth Avenue.

-The proposed Kwik Trip building is 7,316 square feet, which is the same size as the Kwik Trip on Silverbrook Drive.

– The Walgreens measures 16,459 square feet, so the Kwik Trip building will be about half that size.

That location, according to the West Bend City Assessor’s office, has been vacant since late 2010 when Walgreens closed because its new store opened just south of Paradise Drive. Halloween Express did open in this location, but that was temporary and seasonal.

If this site plan is approved by the city of West Bend this would be the fifth Kwik Trip in Washington County. There’s one currently on Highway 60 in Slinger and another further up the road in Hartford, Germantown has a Kwik Trip on Maple Road and West Bend’s first Kwik Trip opened on Silverbrook Drive on Oct. 27, 2016.

Zietlow said he likes this location for several reasons, but primarily because it’s the center of town.  “West Bend by any stretch of the imagination doesn’t have a bad part but this is a central location,” said Zietlow. “Everything else is going to the edges such as Highway 33 and Paradise Drive so this leaves us a little bit of gap in the center.”

On more of a neighborhood note, folks on Decorah Road will appreciate it because they’ve been without a convenience store since Pat’s Jiffy Stop closed in November 2016.

A couple other notes about the proposed Kwik Trip site on Main and Decorah:

– the 2017 property assessment for the empty Walgreens is $2.52 million.

– Zietlow’s comment about being welcomed in West Bend. “I don’t think we’ve ever been as warmly received in a community as this one. I’m going to guess we’re going to be even more well received the second time around.”

– The first Kwik Trip in West Bend opened Oct. 27, 2016 in the 1700 block of Silverbrook Drive just about a half-block north of Paradise Drive.  Zietlow it’s doing “very, very well.”

-The lot size on Main and Decorah is about 1.4 acres. The lot size on Silverbrook is about 3.02 acres.

-The gas station/convenience store on Silverbrook is 7,000 square feet with 26 gas pumps on five islands and a car wash. Zietlow said plans for the station/convenience store on Main and Decorah will not have a car wash.

-Questioned if there will be two Kwik Trips in West Bend could there be three? “Well there’s room for three but we don’t have any other plans for anything else,” said Zietlow.

-If this Kwik Trip would get approved it would build it in 2018.

-Zietlow said Kwik Trip is looking at building about 50 new stores in 2017 and having several acquisitions as well. “We’re actually looking at building 50 new stores a year for the next five years,” said Zietlow.

On Tuesday, Sept. 5 the Plan Commission will make a recommendation to the common council on the zoning amendment and they will be asked to approve a site plan and conditional use permit for the gas station.  One of the questions may be about the traffic impact on the adjoining roads.

 

Cultural campus south of MOWA to be reviewed by WB Plan Commission

During the Sept. 5 West Bend Plan Commission meeting there will be discussion for a Cultural Campus located on the two acres of vacant land just to the south of the Museum of Wisconsin Art. Some of the plants for the area on Veterans Avenue and Water Street included in the design are white oak, flowering pear, sugar maple, hydrangea beds and an aspen grove.

There will be lit railings, a translucent glass screen wall, and expanded parking. The Plan Commission meeting gets underway at 6 p.m. in the council chambers at City Hall on Tuesday.  Other items on the agenda include the review of a proposed Kwik Trip on the corner of Decorah and Main Street.

Rally Time Sports Bar 

Scott and Dan Festge, a father-son team, will be reopening the former Bagg End Tavern on Sept. 11. The new establishment will be Rally Time Sports Bar and Grill.

“We’re cleaning it up and making it look prettier,” said Dan Festge. Contractors have been at the tavern, 1373 N. Main Street, West Bend, the past few weeks refinishing the hardwood floors in the back area by the pool tables and fixing up the outdoor deck by the volleyball court.

“We’re going to have dart and volleyball leagues, but a lot depends on the weather,” Festge said. “We plan on squaring up the fence in back and also putting up a couple horseshoe pits. We’re also working on a behind-the-bar kitchen so we can do full-service food.”

The family already has a successful Rally Time Sports Bar in Saukville.

Funeral services Saturday for Rev. James Strupp

Rev. James A. Strupp, 77, of West Bend died on Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at St. Joseph’s Hospital. He attended and graduated from Holy Angels Grade School. After graduating from West Bend High School with the Class of 1958, began his priestly formation at St. Francis Minor Seminary. He completed his studies at St. Francis de Sales Major Seminary during the period of 1960 -1967.

On May 20, 1967, he was ordained to the Priesthood by Archbishop William E. Cousins at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Milwaukee. Rev. Strupp celebrated his first Mass on May 21, 1967 at Immaculate Conception Church in Saukville. His first appointment was as curate to serve Our Lady Queen of Peace Parish in Milwaukee. He later went on to serve as associate pastor at St. Mary’s Parish in Menomonee Falls, Holy Redeemer Parish in Milwaukee and St. Francis Borgia Parish in Cedarburg from.

On November 28, 1978, he was released for studies in Clinical Pastoral Education, and on March 27, 1979, he was appointed Director of Chaplain Services for St. Joseph’s Community Hospital in West Bend.

For many years, he served as a chaplain for West Bend area health care facilities, retiring from active ministry on October 31, 1992.

He was a member of the Fr. Casper Rehrl Knights of Columbus Council 1964, Our Lady of Holy Hill Assembly 1677 Fourth Degree Knights of Columbus, the Washington County Ministerial Association, National Association of Catholic Chaplains, Apostolate of Suffering and was a co-founder and executive officer of Friends for Life, Inc.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, September 2 at 11 a.m. at Holy Angels Catholic Church with Most Reverend Jeffrey Haines presiding. He will be buried alongside his parents in St. Mary’s Cemetery in Port Washington. Visitation will be at the church on Saturday from 8 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. There will be a reception following Mass in the church hall. The Schmidt Funeral Home of West Bend is serving the family.

Girls try hockey FREE Event at Kettle Moraine Ice Center

On Sept. 23 at 1 p.m. the Kettle Moraine Ice Center and Washington County Youth Hockey Association are sponsoring a Girls Try Hockey Free Event for ages 4-14. All gear will be provided; many coaches and older skaters will be at the rink, ready and eager to help. This is a great opportunity for girls to experience firsthand a featured winter Olympics sport with no monetary commitment.

Slinger Wrestling Team receives prestigious award                    By Ron Naab

The Slinger High School boys wrestling team was recognized prior to the start of the Owl’s varsity football game last week as it received the WIAA/Rural Mutual Insurance Sportsmanship Award.

Every team that participates in a WIAA state tournament is eligible. The selection process includes input from contest officials, tournament management, police and security personnel, crowd control, ushers, and WIAA staff.

Teams are judged on conduct and sportsmanship of coaches and athletes, cheer and support groups, mascots, bands, student groups and adult spectators. School administrators and chaperones are measured during the tournament as well, to keep team support positive and enthusiastic.  Officials from the WIAA may solicit input from hotels, restaurants and business people in the city where WIAA state events take place

The Rural Mutual Insurance State Tournament Sportsmanship Award is a community award. Gina Fritsch and Bill Dorrance of Rural Mutual Insurance presented the award.

Five veterans from Washington Co. on Sept. 16 Honor Flight

There will be five veterans from Washington County on the Saturday, Sept. 16 Honor Flight out of Milwaukee. Among the local veterans on the flight include: Korean War Marine veteran Henry Sausen Jr (Hank) of Hartford, Korean War Army Morse code interceptor Dennis Bingen of Kewaskum,  Vietnam War Army veteran Dennis Muench of West Bend, Army combat Erv Wicklander, and Navy veteran Thomas Gentz of Germantown.

Updates & tidbits

-Wheels on Main is looking for 20 volunteers for its event Sunday, Sept. 3 in downtown West Bend. Volunteers receive a free meal and beverages. Opportunities include registration, assistant in beverage tent, selling donuts and coffee, 50/50 raffle tickets, soda & water. New this year Bloody Marys and root beer floats. Contact anna@downtownwestbend.com or 262-338-3909.

– Popular Elvis impersonator Radney Pennington will be performing live for one show at the West Bend Moose Lodge on Thursday, Sept. 7. Come see this talented, amazing young man. He sings everything from Buddy Holly to Johnny Cash and of course Elvis.

-Cobblestone Hotels will host a ground breaking for its newest addition to the Cobblestone Family and Wissota Chop House in Hartford on Wednesday, Sept. 13 at 11 a.m.

– Archbishop Jerome Listecki will join honored guests for a 160th anniversary Mass and celebration Sept.10 at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton.

– Good Shepherd Lutheran Church (WELS) on the corner of Decorah and Indiana in West Bend will hold a ground breaking ceremony Sunday, Sept. 10 at 9:15 a.m. for its recently adopted building project.

-The 19th Annual Richfield Historical Society Thresheree is Sept. 16 and 17 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. There will be wonderful family-fun activities including a live auction, tractor parade, and kids can build a scarecrow.

-The West Bend VFW Post 1393 is looking for a bar manager, full-time and part-time bartenders. Please send resumes to PO Box 982 West Bend, WI 53095

– Classes at UW-Washington County get underway Tuesday, Sept. 5.

– Crossroads Music Fest is Saturday, Sept. 23. This year’s free Christian music event is being held at Hartford Town Hall on County Road K in Hartford. From noon – 7 p.m. there will be live music, food, a silent auction, and lots of family-friendly activities.

-The last big bash of the summer is Saturday night, Sept. 9 at the Boltonville Fire Department. The Street Dance starts at 5 p.m. with food and refreshments. There is an $8 donation at the door to see Rebel Grace. Proceeds benefit the volunteer Fire Department.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Final flavor of the day selected at Toucan Custard

“That’s A -Moehr –A” a Smores custard with chocolate flakes,  marshmallows and graham crackers will be the flavor of the day today as the Moehr family works its final day at Toucan Custard.

After 27 years as owners of a landmark business in West Bend the Moehr family is moving forward with their lives announcing the sale of Toucan Custard. “We’ve been in the process of trying to sell Toucan,” said Jacquelyn Heise.

“Our last day here will be August 19 as we have found different owners and they will take over and kinda keep Toucan the same which we are very, very excited about,” said Jacquelyn Moehr Heise. “We’re sad to go but happy at the same time and want to thank you all very, very much for the last 27 years.”

“Of course we’d hate to see it completely change but we were at the end of what we were doing and whoever bought it would do whatever they would need to do,” Jacquelyn said.

The sisters said they are looking forward to doing their new thing, which includes a family trip.

“After the sale we’re going to get into several cars and all drive to Graceland,” she said. “Because we can!

“The only way we can go on vacation together is to close Toucan and we could never do that,” Jacquelyn said.

The girls picked Graceland as a promise to their mother who had been battling cancer. “Being able to travel now as a family is just the silver lining in this whole thing.”

On a positive note the Moehr family said they would really miss the people. “We’ll miss the kids,” said Jacquelyn. “They’re like our kids and they’ll tell you this is a family down here.”

As far as a final shebang to go out in a blaze of glory with a big celebration… the girls said they prefer to leave quietly but hope people write their memories.

“It would be cool to get a memory book down here and have people share/write their favorite memory,” said Jacquelyn.

The business was listed by BOSS Realty

Funeral Monday for form Washington County Supervisor John Kohl

The funeral is Monday, Aug. 21 for former Washington County Board Supervisor John B. Kohl of Richfield who died Wednesday, Aug. 16; he was 87.

Kohl was very active in the community. He took over his family farm operations and kept the family-farming tradition going.

Kohl served on the Richfield Volunteer Fire Co. and the Richfield Lions Club for 50 years. He served as a Treasurer and Trustee at St. Boniface Parish, served on the Richfield School Board, was a Town Supervisor for six years before becoming Town Chairman, which he held for 16 years.

Kohl ran for County Board in 1972 and held that position for 34 years as County Supervisor.

Kohl  worked side-by-side with elected officials like Reuben Schmahl, Ken Miller, Herb Tennies and Marilyn Merten.

Kohl also served six years on the Richfield School Board and he was a member of the Ag and Industrial Society.

“He worked in politics for many years,” said former Washington County clerk and now County Board Supervisor Marilyn Merten. “I know when I was county clerk they called and asked if I could look up all the years he served on different boards and committees. They wanted to recognize him for all his years of service.”

“He was a very concerned individual doing what he felt was best for the citizens of Richfield, town of Richfield and Washington County,” Merten said.

Kohl worked on a farm on Highway 175. “They were known for Kohls Corn,” said Merten. “That was one of the trademarks of the Kohls farm.”

Visitation will be Monday, Aug. 21 at St Boniface Catholic Church W204 N11924 Goldendale Rd Germantown, WI from 3 p.m. – 5:45 p.m., followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 6 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorials to St. Boniface or the Richfield Lions Club appreciated. There will be a private burial at the church cemetery.

WB East athletic director hits hole in one at YMCA golf outing

Big excitement at the 16th annual Kettle Moraine YMCA Golf Outing at the West Bend Country Club. During this afternoon round Denny Ziegler, the West Bend East High School athletic director, hit a hole in one and won a two-year lease on a 2018 Toyota Camry from Russ Darrow.

“It was on the 17th hole and a 155-yard shot and I used a six iron,” he said about the par-3. “It just hit the flag stick, heard the loud boom, went up and looked and it was in the cup.”

Ziegler, 34, was in shock. “It was just sitting in the bottom of the cup.”

“Overall I’ve been playing ok. I approached this like any other shot and it just happened to work.”

This is a best-ball tournament with a record 39 foursomes participating. “The sponsorship and support from the community has just been wonderful,” said YMCA director of donor development Jenny Kruse-Zaskowski. “All proceeds benefit the Y’s annual scholarship program.”

The goal of the Kettle Moraine YMCA is to raise $50,000. “We just want to make sure the Y is affordable and accessible to everyone in the community,” said Kruse-Zaskowski.

Former St. Paul’s Church in Slinger being transformed into theater

Neighbors in Slinger are keeping a close eye on the transformation of the former St. Paul’s Church, 204 S. Kettle Moraine Drive as it is being transformed into a theater by Kettle Moraine Players.

According to the Wisconsin Historical Society, the Gothic Revival style church was built in 1886. It was last surveyed in 1977. The wall material is made of “cream brick” and in 2016 the building was purchased by Kettle Moraine Players.

Keller Inc. of Germantown is managing the entire project. “The exterior is getting two new additions along with some new concrete in the front and the driveway on the west side,” said Scott Lausten, Design/Project Manager and company co-owner.

Theater lights and trussing have been hung from the ceiling, new lights, electrical, plumbing, and HVAC are all in the process of being installed.

“A new stage, theater catwalk, grandstands, balcony seating, bar, and flooring will all be installed within the next few weeks. Some of those items are being completed by the owner,” said Lausten.

On a theater note: The Kettle Moraine Players are on track to “open the Playhouse this fall” with a five-show season. Work sessions at the Playhouse got underway this evening.

According to Kettle Moraine Players founder John Brandl, “This week we will be framing catwalks, repairing the top of the balcony railing, carpentry work in the balcony and possibly the basement and we will do some cleaning whenever we get somebody who prefers that work. There is great satisfaction in seeing what you’ve accomplished in just a few hours.”

The inaugural season is set to get underway October 20, 21, 26, 27 and 28 at 7:30 p.m., October 21 at 4 p.m., October 22, 29 at 2 p.m.

The annual Allenton Picnic is this weekend                                                  By Ron Naab

The 2017 Allenton Annual Picnic is this weekend August 19-20 at Veterans Park on First Street in Allenton. Saturday there is a 5K Run/Walk through Allenton starting at 10 a.m., a Bags Tournament at noon. Flight for Life air ambulance will land at 1 p.m. followed by Kids Waterfights at 2 p.m. and Fire Department Waterfight Tournament at 4 p.m. In the evening there will be Bingo and music featuring Gary Cross.

Throughout the weekend there will be rides by Voss Marshland Rides and Amusements along with car seat checks at 11 a.m. and a kids’ obstacle course.

Sunday, Aug. 20 at 11:30 a.m. the annual Allenton Parade steps off from the Allenton Fire Station. “We believe we offer one of the most entertaining and enjoyable parades in southeastern Wisconsin,” said Ron Naab, chair of the parade. “This year we have seven bands performing including: West Bend Community Band, Hartford City Band, Oshkosh VFW Band, Pommersche Tansdeel Freistadt, Green Beret Marching Band, Dual County Band and the famous Slinger High School Marching Band.”

Following the parade there will be a concert in the park featuring all seven bands performing.

Updates & tidbits

– Wheels on Main is looking for 20 volunteers for its event Sunday, Sept. 3 in downtown West Bend. Volunteers receive a free meal and beverages. Opportunities include registration, assistant in beverage tent, selling donuts and coffee, 50/50 raffle tickets, soda & water. New this year Bloody Marys and root beer floats. Contact anna@downtownwestbend.com or 262-338-3909.

– Archbishop Jerome Listecki will join honored guests for a 160th anniversary Mass and celebration Sept.10 at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton.

– Keller Inc., a Design/Build General Contractor with an office in Germantown, will build a large freezer, office and product expansion for Angelic Bakehouse under the direction of Keller project manager Nathan Laurent and architect Tony Tislau.

-The West Bend High School Class of 1952 will be celebrating its 65th reunion on August 26, 2017 at West Bend’s Germanfest.

– Good Shepherd Lutheran Church (WELS) on the corner of Decorah and Indiana in West Bend will hold a ground breaking ceremony Sunday, Sept. 10 at 9:15 a.m. for its recently adopted building project.

-The West Bend High School class of 1948 is will hold a reunion luncheon August 19 at noon at the Top of the Ridge.

-There will be a grand opening celebration on Tuesday, Aug. 22 at Consider the Lilies, 136 S. Main Street in downtown West Bend.

-The 19th Annual Richfield Historical Society Thresheree is Sept. 16 and 17 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. There will be wonderful family-fun activities including a live auction, tractor parade, and kids can build a scarecrow.

-The West Bend VFW Post 1393 is looking for a bar manager, full-time and part-time bartenders. Please send resumes to PO Box 982 West Bend, WI 53095

– E.H. Wolf & Sons, Inc. is adding a new 2-story office building to its property in Slinger, 414 Kettle Moraine Drive South. Keller Inc. of Germantown is working on the project; Dave Uttech is Project Manager and Ron Lindstrom is the Architect.

-Orientation for incoming freshmen is Tuesday, August 22 at 10 a.m. at UW-Washington County.  Classes at UW-WC get underway Tuesday, Sept. 5.

– Crossroads Music Fest is Saturday, Sept. 23. This year’s free Christian music event is being held at Hartford Town Hall on County Road K in Hartford. From noon – 7 p.m. there will be live music, food, a silent auction, and lots of family-friendly activities.

– More than 4,000 people stopped last weekend in Hartford at the 10th annual Wisconsin Hot Rod Radio car show. Jackie Puzia from Milwaukee was the big winner of a $10,000 engine.

Village Board votes to move 9/11 Memorial in Kewaskum                              By Ron Naab

During a Kewaskum Village Board meeting  there were some concerns brought up during an informal non-agenda discussion, about the proposed location for the 9/11 Memorial.

Following the meeting, Gordon Haberman and Jerry Gosa; members of the Kewaskum 9/11 Memorial Committee, met with Village Administrator Matt Heiser and Fire Chief Mark Groeschel to address these concerns.

Initial plans for the Memorial were for the location to be in front of the Kewaskum Fire Station on the east side of USH 45.  These plans were presented to the Village in September of 2016, and were subject to the approval by the Village Board, which included a Memorandum of Understanding with the Village concerning future maintenance of the structure.

During the meeting with Mr. Heiser (who is also a Board member of the Kewaskum Remembers 9/11 Memorial Inc.), and the Chief, valid issues of concern over this location were expressed including the proposed Fire Department location offered only limited parking availability for the memorial; and if there would be an expansion of the Fire Department, it could be in conflict with the constructed memorial.

Of prime concern was the location of the memorial at the fire station could hinder access of FD personnel responding to calls and perhaps create safety issues both for the public and to EMT’s and firefighters when FD vehicles leave the station for emergency calls.

Since the September 2016 Village Board meeting, the Kewaskum Remembers Committee formally incorporated Kewaskum Remembers 9/11 Memorial, Inc., and is presently awaiting approval of their 501 C-3 application by the Internal Revenue Service. The Kewaskum Remembers Committee has continued to fund raise through the Kewaskum Area Arts Council during this time period and the response has been tremendous from both the community and the surrounding area.

As a result of this meeting, it was agreed by all the parties that the lawn area in front of the Kewaskum Village Annex fronting 45 was a more viable site for the memorial.

There is a tremendous amount of parking available at this site as well as the availability of the Annex building for special events. A subsequent meeting with the architect and designer of the memorial indicated the design will be adaptable to this location and indeed may be easier for construction.

At the July meeting with the Village Board, the Annex site was discussed as a viable location and again subject to the Memorandum Of Understanding and public hearings on the Annex location, a new survey will be completed and moderate design modifications to the Kewaskum Remembers Memorial will be developed.

During the August 7, 2017 Village meeting discussion of the Annex site as well as presentation of a draft Memorandum of Understanding between the memorial corporation and the Village were agenda items.

On Aug. 28 the Village Board will meet again to vote on the Memorandum of Understanding.

Haberman is hopefully their 501 C status will be official shortly and the project can comfortably proceed with the new survey of the site and moderate design changes to the memorial for presentation to the Village Board and the community. The steel from the WTC and the new sign depicting the memorial are now at the Annex site.

Haberman said the concerns about the Fire Department site would have had to been addressed prior to any construction being begun and that the Kewaskum Remembers 9/11 Board is greatly appreciative of the support by the Village in seeing this important memorial become a reality.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

New owners for Toucan Custard in West Bend

 After 27 years as owners of a landmark business in West Bend the Moehr family is moving forward with their lives and announcing the sale of Toucan Custard. “We’ve been in the process of trying to sell Toucan,” said Jacquelyn Heise.

The family made the initial announcement in February that they were putting the business up for sale. Gathered in the dining area of the restaurant on Tuesday afternoon the sisters,  Jacquelyn, Rebecca Moehr- Lambrecht and Elizabeth Moehr had a rather tearful update.

“Our last day here will be August 19 as we have found different owners and they will take over and kinda keep Toucan the same which we are very, very excited about,” said Jacquelyn. “We’re sad to go but happy at the same time and want to thank you all very, very much for the last 27 years.”

Since the business went up for sale there were about a half dozen interested parties. The sisters said they would prefer the new owners keep the 1950’s theme of the restaurant but after a while on the market they were more accepting.

“Of course we’d hate to see it completely change but we were at the end of what we were doing and whoever bought it would do whatever they would need to do,” Jacquelyn said.

The buyer, according to the Moehrs, stepped in at the eleventh hour.

“It was to the point where we were going to end up leaving,” said Jacquelyn.

The sisters said the new owners will keep the custard and the business name.

“This is what we wanted; it’s time,” said Jacquelyn. “This is a family thing for us.”

The sisters said they are looking forward to doing their new thing, which includes a family trip.

“After the sale we’re going to get into several cars and all drive to Graceland,” she said. “Because we can!

“The only way we can go on vacation together is to close Toucan and we could never do that,” Jacquelyn said.

The girls picked Graceland as a promise to their mother who had been battling cancer. “Being able to travel now as a family is just the silver lining in this whole thing.” Another silver lining is being able to walk away from the 24-7 demands of the business. “Your phone is always ringing and you’re at work seven days a week,” said Rebecca Moehr- Lambrecht. “It’s going to be weird but phones are going to be quiet.”

On a positive note the Moehr family said they would really miss the people. “We’ll miss the kids,” said Jacquelyn. “They’re like our kids and they’ll tell you this is a family down here.”

As far as a final shebang to go out in a blaze of glory with a big celebration… the girls said they prefer to leave quietly but hope people write their memories.

“It would be cool to get a memory book down here and have people share/write their favorite memory,” said Jacquelyn.

Behind the scenes….

As the last two weeks of business draws to a close the Moehr girls are informing their employees and customers about their decision. “The gentleman who bought my dad’s Mustang was in today and he looked a little sad,” said Jacquelyn.

The business was listed by BOSS Realty

The new owners are a husband and wife, along with the man’s brother.  “They will keep the business mostly the same,” said Jacquelyn. “They will add their touches.”

No word if the new owners will bring back the famous Al Moehr fried baloney sandwich.

The new owners did come in this morning and watched the custard-making process.

Picking the final flavor of the day at Toucan Custard

Word is spreading across the community and Washington County that the Moehr family is selling Toucan Custard in West Bend and moving onto another stage of their life.

While the sisters say they would like to slip away in style they have agreed to have neighbors pick the final flavor of the day.

The cherry on top….. they’re asking you to create a name for the flavor as well.

“My husband has his entry,” said Jacquelyn Moehr Heise. “Thanks a bunch crunch.”

The possibilities seem endless as Toucan Custard has developed an extensive history of memories over the last 27 years in the community.

– Al Moehr, the patriarch of the family, was heavily involved in Kiwanis and the annual Duck Derby.

-Al also was creative with some of his menu selections including the taco cheeseburger and fried baloney sandwich.

-Remember the Toucan car?

-When John McGivern visited to do a segment on Toucan Custard for his Around the Corner show he remarked, “Can Al Moehr have an ugly daughter?”

-“He’d always want us to have our lips on,” said Rebecca. “He just thought if you didn’t have lipstick on it made you look tired; lipstick meant you were ready for the day.”

The Moehr girls have always been pretty creative with the custard flavors at Toucan. They’re throwing down a challenge and the deadline for submissions is 6 p.m. Wednesday, August 16.

The selected entry will be served on their last day at the store, Saturday, August 19.  New owners take over on Sunday.

Submissions must be submitted to WashingtonCountyInsider.com or Washington County Insider on Facebook.

Some of the early suggestions include: That’s A-Moehr-a! (That’s Amore), Rich Schommer said, “Al would order fresh Apple turnovers from me at The Old Fashioned Bakery, make an Apple Turnover custard and send several pints home with me the next day. ” Al’s Apple Turnover Custard.”  Gary Knoeck suggested “S’moehr (s’mores) what a better send off than to use the family name.” Laurie Kraemer wrote, “Grateful for the MeMoehries: I can’t pick just one favorite , so a mix of favorite flavors!: Butter Brickle (butter/butterscotch custard with toffee pieces) with Caramel swirls, Cashews (and/or pecans) grated chocolate, and to have the “lips on”- cherries on the top.” In tribute to the restaurant’s 1950’s theme and classic car night Billy Spiropoulos wrote “Cadillac CARmel cashew.”

Repairs underway to apartment damaged by fire

Six months after a fire gutted an apartment on Braatz Drive in Kewaskum reconstruction is finally underway. On February 10 at approximately 7:36 p.m., the Kewaskum Fire Department was dispatched to a fire located in the bedroom of 222 Braatz Drive apartment No. 7.All eight units in the building sustained substantial fire and water damage. All residents were safely evacuated.

This week contractors from Timber Ridge Construction LLC began making repairs by putting on a roof and framing out rooms as the interior of the building was gutted to the studs. Construction is expected to be completed by October/November. Building owners said delays in repairs were due to weather and permits.

Business in neighboring Dodge County is closing

A longtime business in neighboring Dodge County is closing. An article in the Daily Citizen is reporting Thunder Pallet, which is a pallet manufacturing and heat treating facility, will end operations this October.

A portion of the article by Ben Rueter reads: “It’s been a great run,” company president Ben Mahsem said. The Department of Workforce Development wrote, the facilities at 625 N. Menomonee St., Theresa, and at 909 River Knoll Drive, Mayville, will begin slowing down production Oct. 2 until the complete closure Oct. 31. A notice of the business closing was received by DWD on Aug. 2. The closure will affect 46 employees, four salaried and 42 hourly.”

Mahsem said the business is closing because of his health and the decision to close down Thunder Pallet was something he did not foresee. The article indicates equipment from Thunder Pallet will be auctioned off in November.

Former local Assembly Rep. Mickey Lehman has died

Michael A. Lehman “Mickey” passed away on August 7, 2017 with family at his side. Mickey would like to thank everyone for their support and express his gratitude in being allowed to serve 8 terms (16 years) in the Wisconsin State Assembly, 2.5 years with the Department of Revenue as Administrator of State and Local Finance, Lastly, serving on the Miller Park Stadium Board for 12 years. Mickey shared; “Appreciate the opportunities God provides you throughout life, and enjoy every day! I SURE DID!” Services for Mickey Lehman were held Friday, August 11, 2017.

West Bend Common Council honors 2017 WIAA Baseball champs

The West Bend Common Council led its Monday night meeting with high praise and recognition for the West Bend West High School baseball team which won the WIAA State Championship and finished the season with a record of 33 – 0.

“More important than the scoreboard is how they won their games,” said Mayor Kraig Sadownikow. “They represented themselves and their school and their families and this community with integrity and a humble manner that is well beyond their years.”

Spartans coach Billy Albrecht introduced a portion of the team in attendance and provided a list of some of the accolades and achievements.

-Three of the seniors on the team got a Division I scholarship to play baseball at college.  “Pretty amazing that in a town our size can put out players that can go to the top level of college baseball,” said Albrecht.

-“We had eight players on our team make All Conference and we had four of our guys Evan Albrecht, Jack Thelen, Anthony Schlass and Nathan Burns named first team All State.

-Evan Albrecht and Anthony Schlass were co-Players of the Year in the Wisconsin Little Ten Conference. Anthony Schlass was named Player of the Year for the entire state of Wisconsin in summer baseball.

-Schlass was also named the Player of the Year in the entire state for all high schools spring and summer baseball. Schlass also won the Dick Falk High School Player of the Year award.

-“I’d like to thank West Bend for its awesome support. I’ve coached a lot of teams and obviously the wins here are special but the way they went about it is more special to me and I appreciate you (the council) honoring them,” said coach Billy Albrecht.

Updates & tidbits

Ashly Kasten of West Bend, RN in the Intensive Care Unit, has been recognized with Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin St. Joseph’s Hospital’s first quarter DAISY Award for her patient care and professionalism.

– Archbishop Jerome Listecki will join honored guests for a 160th anniversary Mass and celebration Sept.10 at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton.

-Allenton Parade is Sunday, Aug. 20. Step off is 11:30 a.m. from the Allenton Fire Station.

– Good Shepherd Lutheran Church (WELS) on the corner of Decorah and Indiana in West Bend will hold a ground breaking ceremony Sunday, Sept. 10 at 9:15 a.m. for its recently adopted building project.

-More than 140 avid golfers took part Monday in the annual Jingle Bell Open at West Bend Lakes Golf Course. Proceeds benefit the annual West Bend Christmas Parade. First place went to American Metal & Paper Team. The 1st Place Co-Ed team was Pillars / West Bend Lakes Team. Most Fun Team – Grafton Transit and BJ and Company and 1st Place Christmas Spirit – Horicon Hills Team.

-The West Bend High School class of 1948 is preparing to relive some of its glory years at a reunion luncheon August 19 at noon at the Top of the Ridge. 1948 was an era when choosing the class ring (the Royal Crown) was a big deal, along with winning the debate championship and taking first place in the American Legion Essay Contest.

-Take a Step Back in Time on Sunday, Aug. 13 from noon – 3 p.m. at Richfield Historical Park, 4399 Pleasant Hill Road. Experience the old-school method of washing clothes, grinding coffee, hauling grain. In olden days they called these things chores.The Messer/Mayer Mill, Mill House, and Lillicrapp Welcome Center will all be open and there will be hands-on activities. There is a $5 tour fee and children 5 and under are free. All proceeds benefit the Richfield Historical Society.

-Orientation for incoming freshmen is Tuesday, August 22 at 10 a.m. at UW-Washington County.   Classes at UW-WC get underway Tuesday, Sept. 5.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

New owner for former Friedens Church

One year to the date when Steve Kissinger placed a bid at a sheriff’s sale on the old Friedens Church on Cedar Creek Road his dream came true. “If I find a collection plate I’m going to put it outside the front door,” said Kissinger.

Dressed in blue jeans and a white t-shirt and garden gloves, Kissinger was celebrating his purchase and questioning his future at the same time. “It’s definitely a little overwhelming,” he said.

A year ago Kissinger and friend Terry Becker were completing a cemetery tour. Becker’s father and his grandparents were buried in the cemetery next to the church.

“My great great great grandparents were charter members,” said Kissinger. “And my great great grandparents are buried right next to the church.”

Kissinger started to look at the church and found it in foreclosure. “Last July 31 it went up for auction at the sheriff’s sale. No one bid. I followed it for about six months when it finally went up for auction online,” he said.

The bank, according to Kissinger, “wanted WAY too much for it.” A post published on WashingtonCountyInsider.com in April listed the price at $74,200.

“It never sold and was relisted every week or so. They finally accepted my bid on the July 6 and I closed Friday, July 28,” he said.

Built in 1878 the former church has definitely been neglected for many years. “It is in very poor condition,” said Kissinger. “And that’s being nice.”

All of the church furniture was removed long ago. Although a new roof was put in place last October there is significant water damage and some leakage. Kissinger has already reconciled “this will be a long-term project.”

He also realizes he has to pace himself. “If the steeple cannot be saved I would like to rebuild it to its original 1878 appearance,” he said.  “My friends are calling it St. Stevens.”

Kissinger’s plan is to work on it during the summer and hopefully have it ready by the time he retires in the next five years. “I want to restore it and turn it into my own personal museum for all of my collections including a huge collection of the products from the West Bend Aluminum Company,” he said.

Kissinger also thinks it will be the perfect home for his pipe organ.

In the meantime, Kissinger has moved an old WWII pump organ into the building…. and if you listen close you can hear the hymn “Stand up for Jesus” coming through the doorway as you pass by.

Camera Case in Hartford is sold

On Tuesday the sign on the door at Camera Case in Hartford, 1336 E. Sumner Street, says “This U.S. Cellular location will be temporarily closed on August 1 for an All-Associate meeting.”

According to Scott Henke with the Hartford Chamber of Commerce the shop owned by Bob Stumpner has been sold. “He’s been in business in this community for 40 years,” he said.

Camera Case has reportedly sold to Premier U.S. Cellular. A spokeswoman with Premier in Tulsa, Oklahoma did confirm “Premier has acquired the Camera Case.”

Wendy Drummond from Drummond Communications responded with an update.

Did Premier acquire all 7 U.S. Cellular locations owned by Bob Stumpner?

Premier Locations, authorized agent for US Cellular, acquired 6 Camera Case locations in Hartford, West Bend, Kewaskum, Neenah, Ripon and Saukville on August 1.  The Camera Case store in Green Bay was permanently closed on July 31.

What is the timeline on the Camera Case in Hartford opening?

The store re-opened August 2 and we are planning some fun grand re-opening events soon!

Why did Premier buy these stores?  What made it attractive? The market, the number, the reach, you’re taking over other outlets too?

Premier has owned and operated 5 stores in Germantown, Monona, Oshkosh, Fond du Lac and Plymouth for many years and has always looked for the opportunity to grow.  The CEO of Premier, Wendy Drummond, attended graduate school at the University of Wisconsin, Madison and is a huge Badger and Packer fan, so expanding in Wisconsin has been a strategic goal for some time.  When Bob and Sue Stumpner approached Premier about their upcoming retirement, it was a match made in heaven – the Stumpners were ready to relax and enjoy their retirement and Premier was ready to grow and provide a world-class customer experience to more Wisconsin customers.

I’m checking with the city assessor in Hartford. Did you buy the Camera Case building too on Highway 60?

No, Premier is renting the building from Bob and Sue Stumpner.

 German flare sets the scene for upcoming GERMANfest

A bit of German flare highlights Main Street in downtown West Bend. Thanks to a team effort with the West Bend Fire Department the flags for GERMANfest are now in place. The flags symbolize the start of the annual Germanfest celebration which will be held August 25 – 26 in downtown West Bend. The event is brought to you by Habitat for Humanity of Dodge and Washington Counties.

Pizza Ranch at Ponderosa moving forward

Designs for the proposed Pizza Ranch in West Bend were approved by the West Bend Plan Commission on Tuesday, Aug. 1. Last April, WashingtonCountyInsider.com reported Pizza Ranch had a purchase agreement in place with Steve Kilian for the former Ponderosa building, 2020 W. Washington Street.

A segment of the April article read:

For the past year, since its initial announcement in March 2016, neighbors have been supporting the development of Pizza Ranch in West Bend. Many chimed in on social media, itching for the restaurant chain to take over the old Ponderosa building on W. Washington Street which has been vacant since Kilian purchased the property in 2011.

During a Friday afternoon conversation, Miller acknowledging the Ponderosa parcel was actually one of their first preferences.

“We looked at this property a while back, but because of the higher price we didn’t really think it made sense,” said Miller. “After considering the better location with the frontage road, we are real comfortable with the whole situation and we signed the purchase agreement. Steve Killian has been excellent to work with in putting this deal together.”

As far as the timeline on moving forward, Miller said it should be rather swift. “The nice thing about the old Ponderosa is it has concrete walls, which we can keep as well as the steel roof support. We’ll completely gut the interior and upgrade the facade to Pizza Ranch standards.”

Miller said the “site also requires no excavation work, allowing for a quicker start.”

Miller said that the principal owners Matt and Stacy Gehring will be managing the property.

It’s taken several months to draw up new plans to remodel the old Ponderosa. Some of the details approved by the Plan Commission on the 1.9-acre lot include: a 5,154-square-foot building, 100 parking stalls, two proposed building additions including one pickup area.

Next up the Gehrings will close on the purchase of the property at the end of August.

West Bend Noon Rotarians spend afternoon spreading the love | By William Schroeder Sr.

What does a turtle, a beaver, and an otter on a train have in common? It sounds like the beginning of a bad joke but a stroll along the Eisenbahn Trail in downtown West Bend will answer that question.

They’re all statues surrounded by a fresh bed of wood chips at the playground behind the Museum of Wisconsin Art. During lunchtime on Monday, volunteers young and old from the Noon Rotary Club of West Bend stepped up to spread mulch at the small playground. Rotarians Lisa Sanborn and David Slinde spearheaded the project.

“After a Rotary meeting a few weeks ago, we were talking about getting our fifth Monday service projects going again,” Sanborn said. “Slinde reached out to Craig Hoeppner (director of the West Bend Parks, Rec, and Forestry Department) for ideas.”

Forgoing a typical lunch meeting, Noon Rotary plans to participate in hands-on service projects in the community when there is a fifth Monday of a particular month. Service projects are selected to provide non-profit organizations the opportunity to use the labor of Rotarians.

Slinde, who has been a member of Rotary for nearly 15 years, enjoyed volunteering on a sunny Monday, though he wishes more folks would get involved with service organizations.

“Rotary is unique that like-minded people come together from different backgrounds to commit themselves to ‘Service Above Self,” Slinde said. “I believe that by volunteering, everybody can participate in the building and maintaining of our community.”

Everybody indeed! Volunteers ranged from their mid-20s up to their mid-80s. In addition to Sanborn and Slinde, other Rotarians on hand included Richard Klumb, Amanda Follett, and Anna Jensen. Klumb, a spry 86 years old and member of Rotary since 1958, manned a pitch fork to assist with the woodchip spreading.

“We are young, middle aged, and old,” Klumb said. “But (we) work as a team. Yesterday… was a prime example of some of the things we do to make West Bend a great place to live, work, and play.”

The next time a month has five Mondays is October; Noon Rotary is currently exploring opportunities for a service project on that date.

Updates & tidbits

-Registration is underway for the Washington County FC Little Dribblers co-ed soccer program for kids 4 – 6 years old. Outdoor practice is at Ackerman’s Grove Park.

– There was a practice burn in Jackson on Monday night that turned a lot of heads. Huge plumes of black smoke could be seen by passing motorists from Highway 45. Jackson Fire Chief Aaron Swaney said firefighters were conducting a training burn at the old Jackson Lumber Sales. That company moved to a new location in the industrial park.

-West Bend High School class of 1948 is preparing to relive its glory years as there’s a reunion luncheon August 19 at the Top of the Ridge. 1948 was an era when choosing the class ring (the Royal Crown) was a big deal, along with winning the debate championship and taking first place in the American Legion Essay Contest. Dorothy Barnes is coordinating the noon reunion. The cost is $17 and reservations needed by August 10. Call 262-438-5938 or 262-438-5951.

– It was a steamy day for the annual COLUMNS scholarship run on Thursday. Nearly 220 people participated in, Not Just a Walk in the Park, sponsored by Horicon Bank. Alec and Aric Miller lead the pack at the start of the 5k and the brothers ended up finishing No. 1 and No. 2. Brianna Renner, 17, of West Bend was the first female to finish. Her time was 24:24:09. Proceeds from the annual run go to scholarships at the West Bend High Schools.

-The building, 305 W. Kilbourn Avenue in West Bend, has been sold by Thomas and Kathleen Perry to Gregory and Lisa Lorenz. The 680-square-foot building, constructed in 1840, was most recently home to Sarah Campeau Photography. Adam Williquette, Senior Vice President of Anderson Commercial Group represented the seller in the transaction.

A new T-Mobile store has opened in the West Bend Shopping Center. T-Mobile is a national provider of wireless voice, messaging, and data services. There are a bunch of T-Mobile stores in the Milwaukee area. The new store is in the strip mall space north of Papa Murphy’s Pizza.

– The Local Collective has moved from West Bend to Hartford. Moving into its former location on N. Main Street is Wood N Art, currently located at 111 N. Sixth Ave. above Slesar Glass. Owner Janalee Bach has custom-made wood signs and photography.

-The annual Cedar Community Butterfly Release is Saturday, Aug. 12 at Cedar Ridge Campus. This fundraising event benefits Cherished Moments, Cedar Community at Home’s hospice program, and helps with the purchase of a new pontoon boat for residents. Reservations are $25 and the deadline is Friday, July 28.

-The Kettle Moraine YMCA will hold its 16th annual Golf Outing Friday, Aug. 14 at the West Bend Country Club. All proceeds benefit the YMCA’s Annual Campaign. The Kettle Moraine YMCA provides over $325,000 in financial assistance, helping a total of 1,600 individuals, which is one in six of our members. Register today – a foursome is $700.

-The annual Jingle Bell Open is Monday, August 7 at West Bend Lakes Golf Course. The fundraiser is for the West Bend Community Christmas Parade. Registration is 10 a.m. with an 11 a.m. shot gun start.

-The West Bend VFW Post 1393 is looking for a bar manager, full-time and part-time bartenders. Please send resumes to PO Box 982 West Bend, WI 53095