Tag Archives: Judy Steffes

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

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Another Kwik Trip coming to West Bend

Plans are in the works to build another Kwik Trip in Washington County.

Hans Zietlow, director of real estate for Kwik Trip, said they do 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.

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.

Zietlow said Kwik Trip has not submitted any paperwork yet to the city. “Until we have the approval we can’t really set a time frame on when we will be opening,” he said.

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.

Booklet for Junior Livestock Auction has arrived  

 This week the UW-Extension mailed its 48th annual Washington County Fair Jr. Livestock Auction booklet to area businesses. The 5-page booklet contains a list of potential 4-H youth exhibitors for swine, beef and sheep. The annual auction at the Farm Progress Show Arena gets underway at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 27.

West Bend School Board votes on high school principals

After a little more than 35 minutes of discussion the West Bend School Board on Thursday night, during a special meeting, voted 4 – 1 to implement a standard of two principals at the West Bend High Schools rather than the current standard of one principal for both schools.

Tiffany Larson, Tonnie Schmidt, Nancy Justman and Joel Ongart voted in favor of the two principal motion. Monte Schmiege was the lone dissenting vote. Ken Schmidt and Tim Stellmacher were not in attendance.

Details such as cost, salary and implementation of a two-principal structure were not discussed.  Calls have been placed to school board candidates and we will post those details once more information is provided.

Below are some bullet points from the meeting:

Tiffany Larson – “If two principals in the original setup can improve the responsiveness and the understanding and the identity communication then I would regret waiting another year to promote that kind of positive change.”

Monte Schmiege – “Was the listening session about dividing up into two principals?”

Tiffany Larson – “There’s been multiple listening panels over the past year. The most recent one was, no not about dividing into two principals it was it was simply the wonderings after the interview session and one of the wondering was I wonder if we’d function better with two principals.  Is this job too big for one person?”

Monte Schmiege –  “This has come up rather quickly, in my opinion too hastily to provide the opportunity for the entire community to express their opinions and …. you know I believe the superintendent was intending to have this matter looked at in this coming year and have it studied and come up with a reasonable recommendation to divide into two principals I would certainly endorse that plan and approve it without any hesitation. But it has not been studied so this is just a hasty move.”

Monte Schmiege – “I find it a little surprising that there’s an agenda that says ‘high school administrative reorganization’ and we have three or four speakers who already know it’s about two principals. I don’t know how the community would know that from this notice but four people currently know about it.  So I don’t think the community has been properly involved in making this decision.”

Monte Schmiege – “I’m in favor of delaying this decision until there’s been a proper study and input by the community on the decision.”

Tiffany Larson – “In my opinion the two-principal structure was studied for about 40 years and then we studied the one principal arrangement for three or four and we decided it just wasn’t working as effectively as the old model. So I don’t see it necessarily as a hasty decision as much as one that was perhaps three years in the making. And we’re finally at a point where we can actually make a decision and I consider it really doing what’s best for kids…”

Joel Ongert – “I’d like to make a motion. I don’t have a prepared motion in front of me so I apologize for that.  I move to proceed with the hiring of a principal for East High School and a principal for West High School for the upcoming school year.”

Update posted Friday – In less than 24 hours since five of seven members of the West Bend School Board voted 4 – 1 to hire two high school principals for the 2017-2018 school year it appears the board is ready to “possibly approve appointments.”

The Monday, July 24 agenda shows an action item: “Possible Board appointment of East High School principal and appointment of West High School principal.”

Calls have been place for the second time to elected members of the school board following Thursday’s 5:10 p.m. meeting.

 Pizza Ranch at Ponderosa moving forward

 Designs for the proposed Pizza Ranch in West Bend will go before 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 to be reviewed 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

The West Bend Plan Commission gets underway 6 p.m. in the council chambers at West Bend City Hall.

 West Bend aldermen to vote Monday on deer management 

There will be a recommendation before the West Bend Common Council on Monday concerning the Deer Management Assistance Program.

During a meeting in November 2016 the Deer Management Assistant Program reviewed whether to issue special permits to allow bow hunting to trim the deer herd in local parks as neighbors asked city officials to help manage the deer in the city.

According to Park and Rec director Craig Hoeppner the Park and Rec staff did an old-fashioned deer drive and the count was 28 deer at Lac Lawrann, Ridge Run Park had 41 deer, Regner had 9 and Silverbrook Parkway had 18.

In March, Lac Lawrann voted unanimously that it be a test and sample site for a controlled hunt.

The Park & Recreation Commission voted unanimously at its June 29 meeting to forward the following recommendations to the Common Council regarding deer management in city parks.

Primary recommendation is to take no action at this time, for the following reasons:  Public Safety, costs to the City of West Bend, DNR has stated this is not a big problem overall and recent hunts in similar communities have had limited success and effectiveness.

Secondary recommendation, if the Common Council feels there is a deer problem in West Bend that needs to be addressed, it is strongly recommended to start with a test pilot program at Lac Lawrann Conservancy only.  The test to be done in the wintertime, during weekdays and under controlled circumstances.

Monday’s Common Council meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. in the council chambers at City Hall. The meeting is open to the public.

 The Corner Score is closing

The Corner Score, 104 N. Main Street in West Bend is closing. Owner Mary Jo Joyce opened the business three years ago.  The building, on the corner of Walnut and Main Street, is owned by Ron Gundrum. The Corner Score, which sells vintage toys and books and whatnot, is due to close the end of August. The space is approximately 4,000 feet total, with 2,000 on the first floor and a full basement for additional storage. Adam Williquette with Anderson Commercial Group is listing the property. The lease is $1,700 a month.

On a history note: That location at 104 N. Main Street has had quite a few businesses over the years. Many neighbors remember Alice’s Flower Shop and Heuer’s Sewing. There was also Schoeber’s Camera followed by Schoeber’s Jewelers. J&L Business was in there for a while and Jeanne Mueller had a shop as well. There was also an exercise place in there and a religious book store.

Updates & tidbits

  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.

 -Pete Rettler and Steve Volkert have joined the St. Joseph’s Hospital Board of Directors. Each will begin a three-year term. Rettler is the campus dean for the West Bend Campus at Moraine Park Technical College and Volkert is the city administrator for the City of Hartford.

– The Downtown West Bend Association is looking for vendors for Maxwell Street Day on Wednesday, Aug. 2. The event will run 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Contact at 262-335-3909.

– The Local Collective is moving out of downtown West Bend to Hartford on August 1. 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 Starbucks on 18th Avenue in West Bend has been issued an occupancy permit.

-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 Washington County Fair opens Tuesday, July 25. Here’s a story by Kate Delcore from Washington County 4H – Something new and exciting for this year’s Washington County Fair, is the 4-H Feathers & Fur Auction. The traditional Poultry Champions Auction has been expanded so that this year there will be Champion birds along with more meat birds and even some rabbits. That means more opportunities to bid and support 4-H youth! This event will take place on Friday July 28, 2017. Registration is at 5:30 p.m. with the auction starting at 6:30 p.m. While you are waiting for the auction to start, you will be able to view the animals that will be in the auction and see (or participate) in the amateur rooster crowing contest. Feel free to stop by the small animal barn if you have any questions. See you at the fair.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Kiwanis Early Risers Duck Derby winners announced

The winners of the West Bend Early Risers Duck Derby held on July 4 at Regner Park are as follows:

Business Race:
1st Grafton Transit
2nd Technology Techs
3rd Schmidt Funeral Home

Best Dressed:
1st Phillip Funeral Home
2nd Big Brothers Big Sisters
3rd Froedtert Health hometown Pharmacy

Family Race:
1st Robin Konstanz
2nd Mike Kiezer
3rd Paul Gerbard

Best Dressed:
1st Katelyn Taylor
2nd Gail Burkel
3rd Janet Jeziorski

Town of Trenton accident claims life of young Kewaskum man

On Wednesday, July 5 at 5 a.m. the Washington County Sheriff’s Office was notified of a single-vehicle accident at the intersection of Indian Lore Road and E. Newark Drive in the Town of Trenton. The caller reported a single vehicle struck a tree and there was an unresponsive person on the ground adjacent to the vehicle. Boltonville Fire Department and Kewaskum Rescue were dispatched to the scene along with deputies from the Sheriff’s Office. When the first sheriff’s deputy arrived, he located the vehicle up against a tree about 45 feet south of the paved portion of the roadway. He also located the unresponsive subject on the ground and determined the subject was deceased.

The evidence at the scene indicated the driver was southbound on Indian Lore Road and failed to negotiate the 90 degree curve where Indian Lore Road turns into Newark Drive; driving off the south shoulder of Newark Drive and striking the tree head-on ejecting the driver of the vehicle, who was the sole occupant.

The operator was 19-year-old village of Kewaskum resident, Ruben Padilla-Castaneda. This is Washington County’s third traffic fatality of the year.

City of Hartford responds to complaints over illegally placed signs

The City of Hartford has begun taking a more direct approach to the growing problem of illegally placed signs within City owned properties or city right-of-way.  Starting last week, city staff started pulling or moving signs which were illegally placed within the right-of-way or on city parkland.  Signs for help wanted, rummage sales, retails sails, services rendered or realtor open houses were removed in an attempt to clean up what had once again become a problem throughout the city.

“This is not the first time we have had to do this, nor is this law unique to Hartford.  Every community has some sort of laws regarding keeping the city right of way free from any distractions, visual blockages, or possible liabilities,” City Administrator Steve Volkert said.  “Every so often, the amount of signs starts to build up as a few place them illegally, then a few more and it just keeps growing.”

The normal procedure whenever an illegal sign is placed in these areas if for the city to take the soft approach of removing the sign and contact the owner to ask them to remove all signs or move them as to not be illegal.  Then after a week, if all illegally placed signs are not removed, the City will fine the owners and remove the signs themselves.  “We truly don’t have time to be patrolling every street for illegally placed signs,” Volkert said, “so we nicely ask that the owners move them.”

Most recently, more and more signs were popping up so the city instructed staff to pull any signs they saw during their normal travels throughout the city.  Many of those signs were either moved in from the curb or removed and taken to the city garage for keeping.

Placing signs of this nature is not illegal as long as they are placed on private property with the property owners consent.  The easiest way to determine where the City right-of-way ends and private property starts is by using the sidewalk or 10 feet in from the back of the curb.  If the sign is placed inside the sidewalk, it’s usually good.

“We want our city to look clean and uncluttered, and would prefer not to have our staff confiscating these signs,” said Volkert.  “If you are going to put up rummage sale or business signs, make sure they are not placed within the city right-of-way.”

The City ordinance does not allow signs close to the curb for safety reasons.  1) Signs can blow off and cause traffic issues and liabilities to cars, 2) signs can block the clear vision of turning vehicles when placed on corners, 3) signs can distract drivers taking their eyes off the road to read.  This law is similar to all other communities throughout the state.

City Hall was receiving several complaints from businesses and residents alike on all the signs illegally placed.  The city plans on continuing to pull signs through the summer whenever they come across any of them to hopefully curtail this issue and help improve the clutter which they were causing.

Asphalt pavement repairs, overlays work to start on Monday in West Bend

West Bend’s sewer utility staff televised the storm sewers located under the Vine Street employee parking lot this week. The city had been hoping to crack-fill, seal-coat and restripe the Vine Street lot at the conclusion of the Mad Max improvements. Mad Max is complete with their work but it appears as though the asphalt, one storm sewer line and one manhole will need to be fully reconstructed. Staff is determining the best long-term fix for this parking lot and the city is reluctant to invest limited funds into failing infrastructure. Cost estimates are being prepared by the engineering department before moving forward. The Department of Public works staff will restripe the parking stalls on the existing asphalt later in 2017.

Centenarian principal passes away but leaves legacy of faith

On July 29, 2017, Sr. Marlena Janis, SSND, the first principal of St. Francis Cabrini School, passed away on June 29, 2017. Cabrini alum Kristin Bayer, writes, “This past summer, I had the opportunity to meet S. Marlena, and visit with her a few times. I found her to be a dynamic, funny, interesting woman, filled with kindness, good stories, and a deep love of God. She shared some memories of her time at Cabrini, and her long career as a School Sister of Notre Dame.

When asked why she became a nun, S. Marlena laughed and said, “It was like going into the family business.” Her family was Catholic. Her church was Catholic. Her school was Catholic. Her neighborhood was Catholic.

Her first teaching job was in Chicago, at St. Alphonsus. Her next placement was as the principal of a brand new Chicago school, St. Helena of the Cross. After nine years, she was sent to West Bend to open another new school, Saint Frances Cabrini.

The school was the first building constructed on our campus. There was no church building, no convent, and no rectory. Although the School Sisters typically lived in a convent on the grounds of the school they served, with no convent that wasn’t possible here at first, so Cabrini’s School Sisters shared the Holy Angels convent, and drove back and forth. S. Marlena smiled as she remembered, “I spent my whole life coming and going. But I enjoyed every minute of it.”

Her students had a great deal of respect for S. Marlena. She was sometimes referred to as the Little General, and indeed, she didn’t put up with much. One student reportedly said he was in the office so much that he spent more time with S. Marlena than he did with his own mother. But more than that, her students loved her, and when they reminisce, they do it with a smile.

Turning 100 seemed to amaze Sister Marlena, and led her to some self-reflection. During one of our visits, she shook her head in bemusement and said, “Just think of it. Every one of my hairs is 100 years old.” On another visit, she said that although she’d enjoyed good health most of her life, once she turned 100, she started to feel “icky.” As time passed, that feeling grew “ickier.” But she saw the blessing in it, saying that finally she had learned to accept whatever God had in store for her. “Poor God,” she said. “He had to wait 100 years for that.”

Updates & tidbits from the road

Amazing Ride for Alzheimer’s is on the road: This year’s Amazing Ride for Alzheimer’s bicycle tour is on the road to the Netherlands. Please log onto imthebikewriter.blogspot.com for updates. Cheers!

-Stopped at a fish market in Volendam. With encouragement from some readers to tell more about some of the foods of the Netherlands, I was set to take the herring challenge; however, eels won out instead.

The fully intact eels were about 15 inches long and had angry faces. The filleted eels looked a bit more manageable … and they had been smoked.

The experience was a bit slimy.  It did  slide easily off the toothpick and there was a definite smokey taste. The consistency was what you would imagine; eels are more chewy and less flaky, with a very recognizable fish flavor.

Let me just be clear, “eels” has a definite aftertaste that’s challenging to get rid of. My dinner was followed by a series of “eels burps.”  Simply not pleasant, but a good reminder of what was for supper.

– The storms that swept through the campsite just south of Amsterdam last night were so fierce they knocked the waterproofing right off my tent. It was actually a series of storms with brilliant lightning followed by violent cracks of thunder and pummeling rain. Sleeping outdoors made you feel part of it as it did when it rained inside the tent, too. Good thing my maps and post cards pulled in a lot of the water.

– Making my way north of Amsterdam and a whole new atmosphere; it’s not as densely populated, there is a lot more agricultural base and more tourism – think, Wisconsin Dells.

– I am never alone on the bike trails. However, my skills are minimal compared to the Dutch. They bike with purpose and enthusiasm – they can also bike with no hands and text at the same time.

– A true cultural treat is the stroopwafel which is made from two thin layers of baked dough with a caramel-like syrup filling in the middle. No way was there any thought given to eating a whole one. They were the size of a healthy pancake the likes of Breakfast on the Farm.

– Let’s just be clear, if I sat on a broom I’d crush it; there would be no sailing about. But no matter, according to the executive director of the Museum de Heksenwaag, also known as the Witches Museum, in Oudewater.

According to the museum docent and executive director, Jeanette Blake, people from across Europe and beyond flocked to Oudewater to be weighed and given a certificate declaring they were not a witch. It wasn’t the scale in Oudewater that was specifically spot on ….it was a matter of the person manning the scale being honest.

I agreed to be weighed and tested. Blake had to admit, “there was really no way to win.”

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Get ready for local fireworks and 4th of July parade

Tuesday, the annual 4th of July parade kicks off at 9:30 a.m. in West Bend with the parade route as follows (same route as last year):

The lineup will take place on Main Street in front of Badger Middle School. The route will proceed north on Main Street through downtown, west on Cedar street, north on 7th Ave. crossing Hwy 33 to North Main Street and ending in Regner Park. The route is about one mile long.

After the parade, festivities at Regner Park will include food, kids games, Duck Derby, karaoke, Regner beach swimming and splash pad fun.

At Riverside Park, 6 p.m. – DJ Music and dancing, West Bend Tumbling Troupe, food and beverages.

Fireworks sponsored by Horicon Bank will begin at dusk.

Starbucks Corporate sends update on 18th Avenue store

Starbucks Corporate responded to a recent inquiry regarding the open date of its new store on 18th Avenue in West Bend.

Interesting to note how many stores Starbucks is aware of in its West Bend market.

“Thanks for reaching out to the press line. Starbucks is always looking for great locations to better meet the needs of our customers, and we are happy to confirm that we will be opening a new location 360 N. 18th Avenue in West Bend, WI later this summer. This new location will feature a free-standing drive-thru and is our second store in the market. Feel free to reach back out later for update on the store opening timing.

Thank you for your interest in Starbucks. You may attribute this information to a Starbucks spokesperson.”

Asphalt pavement repairs, overlays work to start in West Bend

The City of West Bend states the following locations will be periodically closed to through traffic beginning Monday, July 10, 2017 until approximately late August for street resurfacing:

o    Maple Street: 8th Avenue to 7th Avenue

o    Walnut Street: 8th Avenue to 7th Avenue

o    Poplar Street: 5th Avenue to Main Street

o    10th Avenue: Hickory Street to Walnut Street

o    Cottonwood Court: Hawthorn Drive to Termini

o    Barberry Place: Cottonwood Court to Termini

o    Walnut Street: 12th Avenue to 11th Ave

The general contractor for the project is Payne & Dolan Inc of Waukesha, Wisconsin. There will also be a number of subcontractors working at various times during the project.  Street resurfacing will include partial removal of the existing curb and gutter, complete removal of the existing asphalt pavement using a milling machine, placement of concrete curb and gutter followed by placement of asphalt pavement.

Motorists are reminded to abide by all traffic control signs and devices as well as be aware of ongoing construction activities.  Alternate routes should be planned to avoid construction whenever possible.

West Bend Noon Rotary Club names Lora Buck as Paul Harris Fellow
On Thursday, Lora Buck was nominated for her service with the West Bend Noon Rotary and named a Paul Harris Fellow.

Outgoing club president Kellie Boone will be replaced by Amy Salberg who takes office as the new Rotary president on July 1.

West Bend Early Risers Kiwanis Dedicates Bench to Al Moehr

The West Bend Early Risers Kiwanis dedicated a bench at Regner Park this week to Al Moehr. The ceremony was held prior to the July 4 Kiwanis Duck Derby. Moehr was a huge supporter of the derby as he sold quite a few ducks from Toucan Custard for the event.

The bench in honor of Al Moehr is next to the Duck Derby section of the river at Regner.

Al Moehr died at his home on Friday, Dec. 23, 2016. He was 70.

West Bend Mayor testifies in Madison on “DarkStore” loophole

West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow testified this week before the Wisconsin Assembly Ways and Means Committee in an effort to encourage lawmakers to close a loophole in a law that allows viable big box stores to contest their property assessments and ask their store be charged the same rate as a store that is closed.

Sadownikow testified, “In West Bend, we have an intelligent constituency that pays attention to their local governmental activities.” He furthers, “They understand the Dark Store Theory and Walgreen challenges to assessments put at risk the financial stability of communities in Wisconsin.  They know current law will place an undue burden on small business, manufacturing, agriculture and homeowners.”

Within a week of opening its doors in West Bend the new Meijer grocery fought its assessment of $20 million. They claim they should only be assessed at $9 million.

Meijer paid $6 million for the land and then constructed a 200,000 square foot building. 

The city assessor’s office in West Bend confirmed Meijer representatives played the dark store card. Other stores across the state fighting assessment include Walgreens, Walmart, Menards and Shopko.  So far the courts have ruled in favor of the stores which then pay less property taxes. In the end the communities that shop at the stores are the ones hit the hardest.

In West Bend the School District had to give back $80,000 after the courts ruled in favor of two Walgreens stores that fought to have its assessment lowered to less than $5 million even though the stores sold for a combined $14 million.

Sadownikow went on to talk about the “slippery slope” that has been created with other challenges from WalMart, Menard’s and ShopKo, “Walgreens and Meijer are not being asked to pay someone else’s property tax, just their own, under the same format Wisconsin has been using for decades.  I would like them to stop demanding that we pay theirs.”

UW announces promotions and tenure; two Washington county faculty on list

Two UW-Washington County faculty have received promotions and tenure.  The announcement was made by Cathy Sandeen, Chancellor of University of Wisconsin Colleges/University of Wisconsin-Extension, who noted, “these colleagues will continue to make valuable contributions to ensure that the UW Colleges meets its vital mission within the State of Wisconsin.” Earning a promotion and/or tenure requires a rigorous academic review and the UW System Board of Regents confirmed the chancellor’s recommendations.

Receiving promotions at UW-Washington County were: Jennifer Heinert (English) was promoted from Associate Professor with tenure to Professor with tenure. Mohan Thapa, photo (Mathematics) was promoted from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor with tenure.

The UW System Board of Regents formally voted to approve the promotions or tenure at their June meeting, and they are effective July 1, 2017, for UW Extension, and August 28, 2017, for UW Colleges, which is the first day of the 2017-2018 academic year. 

Updates & tidbits from the road

Amazing Ride for Alzheimer’s is on the road: This year’s Amazing Ride for Alzheimer’s bicycle tour is on the road to the Netherlands. Please log onto imthebikewriter.blogspot.com for updates. Cheers!

– Adventure by the seat of my pants … is quickly becoming the standard method of travel on these tours.

Rode the jet stream from Detroit into Amsterdam and landed an hour early. Cobbled together my bike, which included repair to a broken spoke and a flat tire, and I was off. Don’t ask me “where to” as I had no maps and, yes, I can see your eye rolls all the way in Europe.

I got lost six or seven times, and it was beautiful.

– Met storekeep Dirk Smits at his corner grocery “Smits Traiteur” in the old part of Hoofddorp. The neighborhood grocery was open six days a week. “Sunday is closed,” said Smits. “We’re Christians.  If you give me a million we wouldn’t open the store. We see the Bible as the holy book of God.”

– Stopped to help Fernando at the side of the road; his chain slipped off. The unique thing about a cycle in Holland is that they all seem to have wrap-around chain guards. Good at keeping grease off a pant leg but a total hindrance with small screws if you need to fix. We teamed up and solved it.

– Fields of flowers decorated both sides of the bike path as I make my way from Amsterdam to Leiden. The tree-lined canals run through all the towns with designated bike lanes on each side. It is cozy and beautiful all in the same breath.

– Leaving Lisse after 22 miles out of Amsterdam on Monday and a wonderful stay with Eduard and Marthy at Bed & Rest – De Dahlia. A beautiful house with energetic neighbor boys, Sam and Simon. Simon and Sam found me. The pair were up to no good summertime shenanigans. Digging a tunnel to China next to a covered bike port where I was taking a rest.

Eventually, after chucking rocks onto the roof and making honking noises at the entry, they were brave enough to come in and try to have a chat. I found interesting, even with the language differences, some of the things we had in common, and their genuine “kid” sense of humor.

What resonates internationally with children? Try starting with Frozen and Star Wars.

I got a kick at how hilarious Sam found my name.

– Spent quite a bit of time in Leiden at the Hortus Botanicus; it’s the oldest garden in the Netherlands, founded by Leiden University in 1590, and the most beautiful.

– The bicycling community is fantastic; so many kids on bikes.

– There’s a saying in the Netherlands, “Have faith in God but lock your bike.”

– This is something I never read in a travel guide…the businesses in Holland are basically boycotting VISA. They’re all sick of the hefty fees that come with processing every transaction. “That’s bad news on this end,” said the female biker who travels with a dedicated VISA.  I have a VISA debit card, too. They won’t take that, either, so it’s off to the cash machine or “robo cash” as it’s called here. This will make for an interesting trip.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Neighbors along Hwy 144 ask for safety improvements

There were about 30 people at Padway’s Supper Club on Friday afternoon as neighbors gathered with state officials to discuss the speed limit on State Highway 144.

The safety meeting was prompted by those living along the Highway who had concerns about the safety of people crossing the road and the kids crossing to get to the piers on Big Cedar Lake.

The objective of the meeting was to ask the State Department of Transportation to help improve safety for pedestrians by reducing the speed from 35 miles per hour to 25 mph on a just a small .7 mile section of road between the Cedar Lake Yacht Club and the curve to the south, just past Padways.

There were four representatives from the State Department of Transportation including John Haug and traffic supervisor Stacey Pierce. Washington County Sheriff’s Captain Bruce Theusch was also in attendance along with a member of the Washington County Highway Department.

State Assembly Rep. Bob Gannon said his office worked with the State DOT to put up radar in the Padway’s parking lot. “That happened in March 2017 and they found the speeds were not excessive,” said Gannon. “The state was pretty cooperative and said they were willing to put up radar again.”

There was discussion about placing a sign with flashing lights in the area to notify motorists to adhere to the 35 mph speed limit. There is a speed change in that area as it drops from 45 mph to 35 mph as you drive south toward the Cedar Lake Yacht Club.

State officials did acknowledge, according to Gannon, that the road is not built to state standards. “But you have to be careful what you ask for because if that road is upgraded then it would take a lot of the front yards of property owners along Hwy 144,” he said.

Data from DOT accident reports showed there were not enough accidents in that area to initiate change. “Seventy-five percent of accidents in that section are property damage only,” said Gannon. “That tells them it’s not the most serious area in the state.”

Some of those in attendance offered other suggestions such as installing speed bumps, putting in a bike path and even allowing the county to take over the road. “There were a lot of ideas shared but the DOT took time to explain some of the ramifications of each of those ideas,” Gannon said.

Neighbors who left the meeting were pretty satisfied with the response from the DOT. “They were hopeful,” said Gannon. “The state also made it clear they would try other corrective measures before resorting to dropping the speed limit.”

Pierce from the DOT said if they were to put in flashing lights around the speed-limit signs that would take about two to three weeks.

On a side note: All state highways start at the speed limit of 55 mph and then there has to be justification for the DOT to raise that limit.

City of Hartford Plan Commission to review 4-story hotel

During Monday’s Plan Commission meeting in Hartford officials will review a proposal for a new 60-room Cobblestone Hotel & Suites. The four-story hotel will be at 110 E. Sumner Street (Highway 60) and will feature a restaurant, bar, outdoor dining, exercise room and pool.

Earlier this year the city of Hartford bought three adjacent parcels specifically so it could have a large enough area to develop a hotel. Part of the development agreement is Bismark Builders, LLC will buy the combined parcel at 110 Sumner Street for $600,000 and then within five days of closing the city will reimburse it $599,999.

Monday’s meeting gets underway at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers at Hartford City Hall.

American Towman ceremony coming through West Bend

 

American Towman is putting on its largest campaign ever to promote awareness to the Slow Down Move-Over law and pay tribute to the emergency workers who have sacrificed their lives on America’s roadways (www.atspiritride.com).

 

On Thursday, July 6 a custom-built casket will pass through West Bend. The “Spirit Casket” is being transported from the west coast to the east coast by over 300 towing companies.

 

The Threshold, Inc. receives Founders’ Service Award

John Bloor, executive director of The Threshold, Inc., accepted the Founders’ Service Award presented this week by the West Bend Community Foundation.

“This is a very nice surprise,” said Bloor.

The West Bend Community Foundation looked at non-profit organizations in Washington County, the services provided, the longevity and what the organization means to the community.

“We have been recipients of some funding from the Foundation in the past. I’m sure there are other worthy non-profits in the community but this means a lot,” said Bloor.

The Threshold, Inc. has been in place 54 years making a difference in the lives of 1,000 people with disabilities each year in Washington County.

Kevin Steiner is chairman of the Foundation’s grant committee. “This year we awarded about $150,000 to 16 organizations; the Founders’ Service Award is made in honor of Cliff Nelson and Doug Ziegler,” he said.

“The Threshold is a pillar of the community and a good role model for other non-profits; it’s amazing the spectrum of services they provide.”

West Bend Mutual works directly with The Threshold, Inc. and its Project Search.

“We all should be proud The Threshold is part of this community,” said Steiner.

The award reads, “In sincere appreciation for outstanding vision, dedication, service, and commitment to the community of Washington County.”

Remembering Ron Krauss from WBKV and WTKM in Hartford

Ronald “Ron” Krauss, who had a radio career at WBKV in West Bend and WTKM in Hartford died last week, June 16, at the age of 76.

Krauss graduated from Marquette University High School 1959. He married Donna Stofflet in 1963. The Krauss’ moved to Germantown where Ron worked in and later owned the family grocery business, Krauss Food Ranch.

Later in life, Ron moved back into his early passion of radio and was a talk show host and announcer at both WBKV and WTKM for over 30 years. Neighbors chimed in on social media when they heard the news offering their memories.

Tricia Tennies Held – Ron could recite a recipe like no one else on Housewives’ Exchange!

Claudia Weiss -I ❤ listening to Ron. He reminded me of Gordie from WTMJ.

Jed Dolnick – I had the pleasure of working with Ron when I was a part-timer at WBKV. His friendliness on the air wasn’t an act; that’s how he was.

Anita Zimmerman – My deepest sympathy to the family I always enjoyed listening to Ron with the recipes

Mary Wenzlaff – Such a treasure to our community….will never be forgotten!

Alexandria Scherr – He was such a gentleman.

Kim Zimdahl – Thank you Ron, for so many years of enjoyable radio.

Kiwanis Early Risers to dedicated park bench to Al Moehr

The West Bend Early Risers Kiwanis will dedicate a bench at Regner Park on Thursday, June 29 to Al Moehr. The dedication with the Moehr family will take place at 8:30 a.m. The dedication is being held prior to the July 4 Kiwanis Duck Derby. The bench for Moehr will be next to the Duck Derby section of the river. Moehr was a huge supporter of the derby and sold quite a few ducks from Toucan Custard for the event. Al Moehr, 70, died at home Friday, Dec. 23, 2016.

Third Starbucks in West Bend may open in mid-July

It’ll be the third Starbucks in West Bend….once it opens and according to contractors that’s still several weeks away yet. Inside the new location on 18th Avenue the flooring still needs to go in as well as a sink or three. The outside looks great with blacktop on the driveway and the little patio seating area. On a side note:  If I said mid to late July for an opening date I don’t think I’d be too far off.  Calls have been placed to Starbucks for a hard opening date. The other two Starbucks in town are on Paradise Drive and inside the new Meijer on S. Main Street.

Richfield woman to compete in national pageant

 

Danika Tramburg of Richfield is the current Miss Wisconsin United States. A graduate of Living Word Lutheran High School in Jackson, Tramburg will be competing at Miss United States Organization’s National Pageant on July 8 in Orlando, Florida.

IRS fraud calls bothering neighbors in Washington County

 

The IRS fraud phone calls are hitting Washington County again. The phone number they’re calling from is a 209-297-2847.

 

The conversation basically goes something like, “You have to call in 24 hours or the local cops will be coming to get you.” The Washington County Sheriff says there’s nothing they can do and just disregard the calls.

 

 

Keith Franz from Venerable Fire Collection has died

Keith F. Franz, 87, Town of Polk, passed away June 14, 2017. Keith was born on July 9, 1929 in Waukesha to the late Delbert “Doc” and Ruth (Schmid). Keith owned Boehck Equipment Co. from 1982 until it closed in 2001.

Keith was Chief of the Cedar Lake Fire Department and past President of the Washington County Fire Chiefs, International Fire Buff Associates, Society for the Preservation and Appreciation of Antique Fire Apparatus of America, the Milwaukee Fire Bell Club, Fire Museum Network, the Venerable Fire Collection, Boehck Equipment Company, and Associated Equipment Distributors.

Keith served as Executive Secretary of the Wisconsin State Fire Chiefs Association. He was active in the Masonic Lodge, Scottish Rite, and DeMolay. He served on the board of the Cedar Lakes Conservation Foundation, the Milwaukee Fire Historical Society, and the Wisconsin Automotive Museum. In addition, he was an active member of the Friends of the Maltese Cross and his church.

Keith’s family will greet relatives and friends on Sunday, July 9, 2017 from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. at the Eernisse Funeral Home, 1167 Washington Ave. Cedarburg, with a Fire Department walk-thru at 2 p.m. A Christian Science memorial service will follow. In lieu of flowers, contributions to the Venerable Fire Collection, Inc. (4349 Hillside Road, Slinger, WI 53086) are appreciated.

Updates & tidbits

 

-On Saturday June 24, the Harley-Davidson dealership in West Bend is hosting its annual Honor Flight Ride to raise donations for the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight. VFW Post 1393 in West Bend will be selling brats and hamburgers at the Harley-Davidson dealership that day.

– The next Cars and Coffee at Auto Service Center,   is Sunday July 9 from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.

– Tommy Schwai spent Saturday afternoon celebrating his 60th birthday with about 100 of his closest friends and family. “It’s just another day,” said Schwai while welcoming handshakes and hugs. Nobody left Tommy’s party hungry as there were plenty of homemade brats, fabulous salads and heavenly desserts. Tommy’s favorite was the pineapple upside down cake.  “We’re not going to blow out the candles because they’re sitting on the counter at home,” said Tommy’s wife Kathy.

-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 Kewaskum Area Chamber of Commerce is gearing up for its 2017 Party on the Pavement, on Tuesday, June 27 starting at 10 a.m. Money raised from vendor booths and beer tent go to support Kewaskum Area Community Projects.

 Amazing Ride for Alzheimer’s is on the road

 

This year’s Amazing Ride for Alzheimer’s bicycle tour is on the road to the Netherlands. Please log onto imthebikewriter.blogspot.com for updates. Cheers!

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Washington Co. to implement park stickers in 2018

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Stocky’s Fast Track auction is Tuesday, June 20

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

Town Hall meeting for veterans

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

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

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

Tom Hostad wins Cliff and Betty Nelson Award

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Updates & tidbits

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Gehl Foods building in West Bend sold to Austrian company for $5.4 million

Gehl Foods, headquartered on Whitney Drive in Germantown, has sold its West Bend plant, 825 Rail Way, to a plastic bottle manufacturer from Austria.

Records obtained from the Register of Deeds shows Alpla Inc. closed on the purchase of the property May 31, 2017 for $5,430,000.

The property on Rail Way was built in 2006. The building is assessed as a manufacturing company and in 2016 the assessed value was $3,741,600.

Alpla Inc. describes itself as “an internationally active company that grows with its global customers. Leadership in innovation together with operational excellence are key success factors. ALPLA’s corporate culture is characterized by a hands-on mentality and with a deep identification of family values. With this in mind, ALPLA provides professional on-the-job training with attractive entry-level career opportunities.”

Gehl Foods was acquired by Wind Point Partners of Chicago in March 2015. Just last month the company went before the Germantown plan commission with a request to expand its Main Street plant.

Ice Age Trail developing new connector point to Ridge Run Park

There’s been somewhat of a flurry of property sales on Highway 33 west in West Bend in recent months and paperwork came through the city assessor’s office this week regarding the sale of a 1.38-acre parcel on W. Washington Street.

The Living Trust of Sharon E. Marth was the previous owner of the woodsy lot just north of the RE/MAX building.

According to the register of deeds, that parcel had been in the Marth family since March 27, 1972 when William J. Marth bought it from Richard J. Sander and his wife Jeanne A. Sander. Records show the lot sold June 1, 2017 for $360,000 to the Ice Age Trail Alliance, Inc., A Wisconsin Corporation.

Mike Wollmer, executive director with Ice Age Trail Alliance, said the acquisition of the Marth property will extend the trail from Ridge Run Park out to Highway 33. “It will eliminate the long road walk that currently exists between Camp Silverbrook and Highway 33,” he said.

The Ice Age Trail Alliance had its eye on the property for the last 15 years. “It’s a great connector point,” said Wollmer. “It makes for a much safer opportunity for people to hike the trail.”

The connection is about 1 mile in length. “As the crow flies it may be shorter but depending on how it’s laid out it could be about a mile,” Wollmer said.

The Alliance plans to develop the trail which will include construction of a bridge. “There are going to be significant structures,” said Wollmer. “We anticipate investing as much as $100,000 to make the connection on the property for the trails.”

The timeline on the project is still several years off. Wollmer cited more government oversight such as surveying the property, regulatory issues, water regulations, and archaeological surveys.

“We’ve got to also learn the land a little more than what we see from the street,” he said. “How the water moves through the property and then make a determination the best route for the trail.”

Wollmer said the deal to purchase the property was a team effort. “The Department of Natural Resources, the National Park Service, the City of West Bend and Sharon Marth and Gloria Dawn Strickland were helpful in making this an affordable acquisition. “This has been a long effort and we’re thrilled it came together,” he said.

Subway in Slinger hosts donation for Honor Flight

Korean War veterans from Washington County participated in a check presentation this week as SUBWAY® outlets in Wisconsin and Illinois partnered with Honor Flight hubs to raise funds to send approximately 167 World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War veterans on Honor Flights.

Korean War veteran Gerald Schwalbach, 86, of Jackson said, “It’s a wonderful thing to see the support behind the vets.” Schwalbach was drafted and served in the Army from 1951 – 1953. “The Honor Flight is an awesome day and I would recommend it to anybody.”

Korean War veteran John Hensen, 88, of Hartford served at the tail end of the Korean War from 1947 – 1951. “The Honor Flight is very emotional,” said Hensen. “That’s all I’ll say.”

The check presentation, for $83,786, was made on the 73rd anniversary of D-Day and just a few days before the Honor Flight’s 40th “mission” on Friday, June 9.

Five veterans from Washington Co. were on Stars & Stripes Honor Flight

Five veterans from Washington County were aboard Friday’s Stars and Stripes Honor Flight including Korean War Air Force jet mechanic Chuck Campbell of Jackson, WWII Marine Ralph Simoneau of Germantown, and three Korean War veterans from West Bend Richard Klumb, Gus Szalewski and Steve Zacher.

State title reunion

There was a nice reunion Thursday at Carl Kuss Field in West Bend as the 2002 West Bend East WIAA State Champion Baseball team gathered to celebrate the 15th anniversary of its state title.

The team held a number of impressive records including an overall record of 28 wins and 4 losses, 16- 0 North Shore Conference, defeated Muskego 7-6 in the 2002 championship game.

“The major highlight was Josh Boyer hitting a home run in the bottom of the ninth to give us the victory,” said Andy Kastner. “We never even saw it because it was so foggy.”

Kastner recalled the game against Muskego was played at Bukolt Park in Stevens Point. There was a long, long rain delay and they didn’t finish the game until midnight. Bob Dohr called the game for WBKV along with Mike Elliott. “I remember Mike Elliott said ‘The Green Tree Gator’ when Boyer hit the home run,” said Kastner.

Players from the 2002 team included Shawn Pasbrig, Josh Heisdorf, Josh Boyer, Andy Schneider, Ryan Gonwa, Adam Wiedmeyer, Ryan Rohlinger, Mark Adams, Andy Kastner, Joe Lord, Luke Sternig, Aaron Feucht, Chris Kilian, Nick Chesak, Mike Chiannelli, Mike Brock Cranney, Randy Bratten, Paul Olson and coaches Doug Gonring, Craig Larson and Curt Schroeder.

Downtown BID approves $50,000 for new bridge

The Downtown West Bend Business Improvement District approved donating $50,000 to help sponsor a new pedestrian bridge over the Milwaukee River. This bridge is south of the now removed theatre bridge AKA bridge to nowhere.

The bridge being replaced is sometimes referred to as the Mountain Outfitters bridge. The project is part of the overall $1.5 million plan to revamp the river walk.

Park and Rec director Craig Hoeppner said the new south bridge would come in around $64,000 but then installation, bridge supports and concrete would bring the total to about $125,000.

Mayor Kraig Sadownikow and city administrator Jay Shambeau are helping spearhead an effort to recruit outside private funds for the project. At one point in the BID meeting, board member Peggy Fischer suggested the BID increase its donation to cover the entire $64,000. Larry Porter echoed her thought.

The final vote on $50,000 for the bridge project was approved 3 – 2.  Board members Herb Tennies, Brian Culligan and Wayne Kainz were absent and Adam Williquette abstained.

Voting in favor were John Hafeman, Mike Husar and Tony Jasen.  The two discenting votes were Fischer and Porter. The BID discussed a number of other items at its Tuesday meeting including the success of a recent cleanup of the flowerbeds and the success of its marketing plan with the DIVA group.

Stocky’s Fast Track has closed

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

Updates & tidbits

-The USGA has relocated one of the two main complimentary spectator parking lots for fans attending the 117th U.S. Open Championship at Erin Hills. The RED Lot has been moved to the Washington County Fair Park in West Bend. The USGA made the decision this week to use the alternate site because it would better manage adverse weather conditions.

– A public visitation in remembrance of Dylan Steffen will be held Wednesday, June 14, 2017 from 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. at the Myrhum Patten Miller & Kietzer Funeral Home, 1315 W. Washington St., West Bend.  Steffen, 22, a2013 graduate of West Bend West High School passed away Wednesday, May 31, 2017.

-The West Bend Bier Garten is June 10 – 11 at the Regner Park Pavilion. Sponsored by West Bend Friends of Park and Rec. Music, food, dancing and beer at the Silver Lining Stage.

– The 30th annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm is Saturday, June 10 at the Golden ‘E’ Dairy Farm on 8262 Orchard Valley Road in the Town of Farmington.

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

-Homes for Independent Living is holding on-site caregiver interviews Wednesday, June 14 from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. at 2395 W. Washington Street. Mention this post and earn a signing bonus up to $1,000.

– Action in Jackson is June 10 – 11 at Jackson Park in Jackson. Highlights include the woodcarving auction, music, food, amusements, and a noon parade Sunday.

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

A big day for grandma June Behm

It’s a big day for Grandma June Behm who turned 100 years old on Friday, June 9.

Behm was born June 9, 1917 when Woodrow Wilson was president of the United States. Behm was an only child, born in Cambridge, WI. She excelled in education and graduated high school at 16.

After school she went to work for the state government in the Industrial Commission in Madison. Behm was 24 when she married on May 10, 1941. She came to West Bend and worked for 25 years as a legal secretary at the O’Meara Law Office when it was located on the triangle, where Old Settler’s Park currently stands.

“They should have never torn down that building,” said Behm. “That was quite a landmark and they didn’t believe in keeping the antiques there. This was on the Main Street and it was featured on one of the telephone fliers.”

Behm recalled some of the attorneys at the firm including Jim Pouros, Steven O’Meara and Tom O’Meara.

“When I worked downtown I used to go shopping at Campbells and the Penny’s store,” she said. “They had a first floor and then clothing for sale in the balcony.”

A member of St. John’s Lutheran Church, Behm said she liked West Bend because it was “always friendly.”

Fondly referred to by her family as “The Dessert Queen” Behm could whip up some famous desserts including poppy seed torte and hoho cake.

The secret to longevity? “I don’t think anybody really knows,” laughed Behm. “Part of it is your ancestors.”

Below are some memories from her great grandchildren:

She crocheted me these cute little slippers that I still have! I wore them all the time and they were made with love. Also this beautiful needle point picture that hung on my bedroom wall my whole life… announcing my birth. So special to have those family made treasures! I can’t believe the amount of time and love that went into that given how many grandkids and great grandkids she has! It’s mind blowing. What a labor of love all those things were! And she never forgot a birthday or celebration – despite having so many family members to keep track of! I always got a card in the mail. That is dedication! She is such a gem. Also I can’t forget the forbidden peanut M&M jar on top of the dresser in her upstairs room.. one of my favorite parts of going there I must admit! Oh so many memories coming up… the lemon poppy seed torte and hoho cakes at her house in the summer. The long line of food – rolls, baked beans, coleslaw mm mm – going all through her kitchen. The park across the street. Crayfish in the stream. So many memories! All the owls on the table in her front room. I still remember the smell of her home and the art work on the walls and the mustard colored couch. —Kristin, Great granddaughter

I always loved going there and counting how many owl decorations and knick knacks she had, I counted all the way up to 80 or 90 I believe! Ha! —Marlissa, Great Granddaughter

I remember walking to her house after work, just to talk. We talked about everything from World War II and the Kennedy assassination to the recently elected Scott Walker. I always thought it interesting that all of those historical moments felt so far removed from myself but for her, seemed just like yesterday. Such a wealth of knowledge! —Joshua, Great Grandson

Most of my favorite memories were when we went out to Arizona to visit her and grandpa. We would always go out to their favorite Mexican restaurant, play cards and go hiking in Saguaro National Park. I also remember her taking us to this restaurant in the old western city that was decorated like a saloon. Ties weren’t allowed so we went to Goodwill to buy old ties and wear them to the restaurant and they would cut them off. Another fun memory was her taking us to Nogales, Mexico and getting a picture of us riding a donkey with a sombrero on. —Jamie, Great granddaughter

Peanut M&Ms; Ho Ho Cake; Poppy seed Torte; pool table in basement; holidays and various special occasions at Grandma and Grandpa’s; Christmas in October; Playing at the park across the road; Catching crayfish in the creek across the road; Sitting on the back patio looking on their well-kept yard; Rabbits, birds and squirrels in the back yard; Always happy to see you; always “proper”, never uncouth, etc.; Very loyal; Intelligent; Always enjoyed good conversation; faith and morals; strong opinions; “everything in moderation”; Good sense of humor; Dignified; Played cribbage with Grandpa every night; Enjoyment of sports (Badgers, Packers, Nascar—Matt Kenseth); Love of animals and nature; Used to fish with Grandpa, and went fishing with me a few times on Bass Lake.  Caught a nice 26” Northern Pike one time; Good with dogs and cats.  She used to take care of our cat Kookie during vacations, and when she’d sternly tell her to stay out of a certain room, she did!; In my adult life, she took care of our cat Felix at least once also; Staying at their place in Arizona; Grandma and Jake, our dog.  She would feed him buttered pumpernickel bread.  She insisted he liked it buttered best, so that’s what he got.  But he wasn’t allowed on the couch, and he obeyed her when she told him so; married 70 years and they still liked each other!; Lunches at Gma & Gpa’s, sometimes with friends of theirs or extended family – I believe this is how I first met folks like Inez and Arden; Their neighbors in AZ – “happy hour”; Personal appearance always nice; Stories she would tell; She seems to have always seen the best possible me in me, and that makes me want to be that person.  —Myles, Grandson

Grandma was a great wife.  She was always respectful, forgiving, supportive.  I remember her telling me once that she would always fix her hair a little and at least put a little lipstick on in the morning before making Grandpa’s breakfast for work because she didn’t want him to remember her looking like she just got out of bed.  I guess it paid off, since they were married for 70 years!  And if Grandpa were still here, he’d find her just the same.  She is always in full dress: hair done, face made-up, outfit and jewelry coordinated.  Maybe that’s what keeps her young!  That and her social nature.  She loves to visit and has always been wonderful at keeping in touch through the mail and the phone.  When I think of Grandma Behm, I think of the perfect Grandma…what you think of when you say, “grandmotherly,” yet few of us really have contact with such people.  She’s a beautiful combination of love and affection and stern expectations.  When I married into the Muckerheide family, I gained many blessings, and she is most definitely one of them.  Paula, Granddaughter-in-law

Grandma and Grandpa Behm had a cottage on Long Lake, which is north of Newald, getting close to the northern border of Wisconsin. When I was around 5 years old, my brother Mitch and I were staying overnight at their cottage. In the morning, grandma got us ready for church and told us NOT to get dirty while we were outside. Needless to say, I fell in the lake! ..or was I pushed?”–Matt, grandson

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

New mammoth silo at West Bend Elevator

There’s a new silo on campus at West Bend Elevator on County Trunk Highway D and it’s quite the mammoth contraption. Construction started a couple weeks ago as crews built the roof first and then raised the silo from there. A crane was brought in for one day as the side panels were riveted into place.

The silo is about 80-feet high, which is about 8 stories, and the base includes 80-feet of cement. “That’ll hold 300,000 bushels,” said West Bend Elevator Vice President Doug Gonring.

The new silo is made up of 19 rings of panels and will be used for storage. In comparison, a silo being built at Adell Cooperative, located just west of Batavia, is 188-feet high. “That’s a pig of a bin,” said Gonring. Standing next to the other three silos it looks like one of those Russian nesting dolls.

Germantown Health Center to be renovated

Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin is preparing to remodel more than just the West Bend Health Center as the Germantown Health Center, W168 N11237 Western Ave., Germantown, will also be renovated.

 

“To better meet the needs of our patients and accommodate future growth,” said Tim Olsen, manager of public relations.

 

Changes in Germantown include the addition of eight primary care rooms, along with four specialty rooms and a procedure room.

 

“The renovations support more efficient workflows and room use, and increase coordination of care for patients,” Olsen said. “The renovations also include site improvements to plumbing, heating/cooling, electrical, and security systems.” Olsen said the renovations to the Germantown Health Center will be complete in late fall.

On May 10, Olsen confirmed the remodel of West Bend Health Center, 1700 W. Paradise Drive.

That facility was built in 1990. The plan includes the relocation of the West Bend Surgery Center to the St. Joseph’s Hospital campus. The current health center, according to Olsen, will remain open to serve patients while the construction is underway.  A new West Bend Health Center is expected to begin in summer 2018.

Ron Zarling of West Bend on Honor Flight

It was an early rise and shine for Ron Zarling of West Bend today as he raced down to Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport to take off for Washington D.C. on the 39th mission of the Stars & Stripes Honor Flight.

Zarling was 19 years old when he was drafted. Living in Milwaukee and a 1952 graduate of West Division High School, Zarling was working at a typewriter shop when he got his marching orders from Uncle Sam.

“The typewriter shop was on 30th and Vliet Street and the business was called Rudolphs,” he said. “A father and son ran the shop and I was a delivery person and I also checked out typewriters.”

Underwood, Royal and Remington were all in a day’s work for Zarling. Once he entered service his first stop was Fort Leonard Wood for basic training.

It was April 1954 and it was 8 weeks of basic in the armored division of the U.S. Army and after that Zarling went into clerk/typist school.

“After basic I got my orders and it said I was going to Germany,” he said. “We took a troop ship and it was a slow freight and it took us three weeks to get to Germany.”

Zarling said the only good thing about the trip was getting a pass and stopping for a day in England.

Onto Heidelberg, Germany and Zarling was stationed at European Headquarters Command where he worked in the Machine Records Unit. “I had no idea what I would be doing and the next day they turned me into a keypunch operator and that was my career in the service,” Zarling said.

“We’d enter data onto the cards and after it went through the machine it would go up into the hopper. This was the first infrastructure of data processing.”

Logging morning reports, equipment inventory and personnel assignments would all cross Zarlin’s desk during a regular 8-hour day, 5 days a week. Zarling’s wife came over to Germany during his service. “Our first apartment was just one room in a building that used to be barracks for the Germans,” he said.

Stationed for two years Zarling said there was no conflict during his service. He was discharged in 1956.

Zarling has been to D.C. before. He said he is going to try to find his second cousin’s name on the WWII Memorial. Zarling’s guardian on the Honor Flight will be his oldest daughter Judy Ish.

West Bend Memorial Day details   

The Memorial Day parade in West Bend will step off at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, May 29 and head north from South Main Street and Oak Street to Hickory Street and back down Sixth Avenue to Poplar Street.

A ceremony will follow in the old Courthouse Square. That program begins at 11 a.m. and will feature World War II veteran Allan Kieckhafer as master of ceremonies.

The Reverend Clarissa Martinelli of Fifth Avenue Methodist Church will give the Invocation and Benediction. Other tributes will include a Preamble of the Constitution by West Bend East sophomore Grace Peplinski, Gettysburg Address by West Bend East sophomore Rachel Roeber, a reading of the poem “In Flanders Field” by West Bend West junior Anna Pitz and performances by the West Bend High School Band and the River City Irregulars.

The Memorial Day Speaker is Vietnam veteran Richard Lindbeck. In case of inclement weather the ceremony will move to the second floor chambers at the Old County Courthouse.

Assistant Principal for a day at St. Frances Cabrini

St. Frances Cabrini Principal Aaron Hilts had help from 2nd grader Taylor and 3rd grader Noah as the two boys were Assistant Principals for the day. The opportunity was an auction item at the annual St. Frances Cabrini Dinner Auction; their parents were the lucky winners.

The boys took the job seriously, even wearing suit jackets for the day. Among the tasks assigned was brainstorming some good new rules to suggest to their classroom teachers. They both produced lengthy lists that included ideas such as a no-homework afternoon, a Lego day, an out-of-dress code day, a kickball tournament, and extended time for gym and recess.

Construction on Hwy D

Some frustration for motorists on the north end of West Bend as construction got underway this week on County Trunk Highway (CTH) D. The work runs from the Highway 45 northbound ramps to Green Tree Road.

The road closure is a bit handcuffing as there’s no easy way around. Detours are marked. Neighbors in the nook of Young America will see a rather large increase in traffic as motorists are routed round the back way by the old Lighthouse Lanes and over the white knuckle wood bridge.

According to the Washington County Highway Department construction will begin by closing the road to thru traffic and then removing and replacing the concrete segment between USH 45 and Lighthouse Lane.

The driveway to West Bend Warehouse will be realigned and a left turn lane for traffic turning north onto Lighthouse Lane will be added to improve safety.

Construction will be staged to allow access between USH 45 and Lighthouse Lane and also to provide uninterrupted access for trucks traveling to and from West Bend Warehouse.

The contractor will also be repaving Lighthouse Lane from CTH D to the eastern entrance of The Columbian banquet hall. The construction should be finished by mid-August.

Motorists are asked to follow the posted detour route: USH 45, State Trunk Highway (STH) 33, and STH 144 (Main Street). Neighbors are asked to use extra care when driving in the construction area and obey all flagmen and construction signs. Alternate routes should be used if possible to avoid delays.

Updates & tidbits     

Financial adviser and Sunrise Rotary member Mike Nowak and West Bend Park & Rec Director Craig Hoeppner split the 2017 Betty Pearson Community Leadership Award. Pearson was the former executive director of the West Bend Chamber of Commerce.

– The West Bend  Veterans Honor Guard and the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War met at 1 p.m. Saturday, May 20 at Holy Angels Cemetery in West Bend for a short ceremony to dedicate a new Memorial Monument for the Civil War veterans buried in that cemetery.

-More than 150 people turned out for a flag memorial dedication at the American Legion Lt. Ray Dickop Post 36. The ceremony was dedicated to the thousands of men and women who served their state and nation admirably.  The Post acknowledged their heroism and express sincere appreciation for their sacrifices. Guest speakers included the Honorable James Porous and comments from Janet and Andy Koehn, the daughter and grandson of D.J. Kenny.

– A note of thanks and hat tip of congratulations to Battalion Chief Todd Van Langen for 25 years of service at the West Bend Fire Department. Van Langen pulled his last shift this week.

-There is a ribbon cutting May 31 at the new Delta Defense headquarters on Freedom Way. The ceremony starts at 3 p.m. with a building blessing by Rev. Nathan Reesman followed by comments from USCCA’s Tim Schmidt, Mayor Kraig Sadownikow and Senator Ron Johnson.

-The West Bend Bier Garten is June 9 – 11 at the Regner Park Pavilion. Sponsored by West Bend Friends of Park and Rec. Music, food, dancing and beer at the Silver Lining Stage.

-Steve Wietor from Roffler Styling sold his property, 403 S. Seventh Avenue, to Kand’E Shop LLC for $147,000. The assessed value is $147,900.

– The 30th annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm is Saturday, June 10 at the Golden ‘E’ Dairy Farm on 8262 Orchard Valley Road in the Town of Farmington.

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

– Action in Jackson is coming up June 9 – 11 at Jackson Park in Jackson. Highlights include the woodcarving auction, music, food, amusements, and a parade on Sunday.

– Volunteers joined in with crews from the city of West Bend and members of the Business Improvement District to plant flowers as part of Spring Clean-Up Day in downtown West Bend.

Remembering Prescott’s Pick ‘n Save

There were a lot of grocery updates in the local news this week as Meijer opened on S. Main Street in West Bend and the two Pick ‘n Save stores added new signage as an interior remodel slides into its final stage.

There’s quite a bit of scuttlebutt on how the stores will compete in a small town of 30,000+.

Some neighbors say the grocery bar has been set pretty high in West Bend primarily because of the performance of George Prescott and his team at the old Prescott’s Pick ‘n Save.

The Prescott legacy dates to 1971 – 1972 when Ed Prescott, George’s father, started the family-owned grocery.  It was a SuperValue store located on S. Main Street in West Bend in the old West Fair Mall.

A post on the blog Stores Forever indicated “Prescott’s took up 15-20k square feet ….large for a supermarket at the time and for the size of the city at the time. A larger Kohl’s Supermarket was up the street, in one of West Bend’s first shopping centers, West Bend Plaza.”

The Milwaukee Business Journal reports in “1978, George Prescott purchased the West Bend store, and then bought his father’s three remaining stores in Ripon and Oshkosh in 1981.”

It wasn’t until 2002 when Prescott sold his two Pick ‘n Save stores in West Bend along with several others to Roundy’s. The standards at Prescott’s Pick ‘n Save carry quite the legacy in West Bend.

Folks remember George knew the names of all his employees. He had a college investment program for staff. When Pick ‘n Save sold a winning lottery ticket, George shared the kickback from the Wisconsin Lottery with staff.

There was also a slot at the courtesy counter when you walked into the south store and you could mail your We Energies bill without a stamp.

Some of the notable high-caliber people on George’s team included the friendly faces of Chuck Benjamin, Greg Grimm, Jerry Hardy, and Ralph Prescott … to name a few.

Leslie wrote in to Stores Forever, “And actually, the mall did open into Prescott’s. There was a right angle with a ramp down to the grocery store at the far end of the mall. I know that for a fact because my sister and I would get into trouble riding carts down that ramp! Great memories.”

   What do you remember about George and the standards set at Prescott’s Pick ‘n Save?

Shellie Becker – I remember him always interacting with the customer’s and he always had a smile on his face. His plaid suits.

Cathy Lawton – Yes the plaid suits and that infectious smile. He is quite a man.

Dustin Denis – I worked for him for 5.5 years in high school and college. Was one of the best business owners I’ve ever met. Down to earth and really cared about his people. I was a no name bagger kid in high school yet he’d stop by to say hi and see how things were going. I think the majority of his employees through the years respect that man to this day.

Patty Engstad Peterson – Mr. Prescott hired my mentally challenged brother in the 70’s, he will always be a hero in my eyes. In return my brother was a hard working man who gave 100%, I will forever be grateful for what this man did!

Becky Trzebiatowski – Gaynor I worked for George for many years at Pick N Save South. He was always friendly, caring, and knew his employees by their first name. He would stop and talk with his employees to catch up on what was going on. I also appreciated the dollars for scholars program as I was saving money for college. I am proud to say I use to work for him.

Sue Drews Rindfleisch – George by far was the best businessman I have ever had the privilege to work for. He cared about every single one of his employees and it showed every time you saw him. Truly a very caring and giving man in many ways!!!

Deb Anderson – I worked in the floral department (now the entry to the new senior center!). George Prescott always had a warm greeting and smile for his employees. There was a very different relationship in those days between employers and employees. They appreciated…See More

Barb Peterson – I moved to West Bend in ’84 and remember Prescott’s Shoprite before it became P&S South. Employees not only bagged your groceries, but helped load it into your car. In the winter, people left their cars running in the parking lot to keep them warm. Unheard of now-a-days.

Chris Uhrig Steiner – I worked for George at the Super Val from 74-76 when I went away to college. He was a fantastic boss & a great neighbor! I learned so much and was given the opportunity to work in many areas of the store. It was a privilege to have George as my first boss

Sherrie Rumick – I worked at Prescott’s Super Value/Shop Rite 1978-1984. What a great working experience for a student going through school. Was a pleasure to work with George and Judy, and rest of the crew!

Wendy Hofmann-Galecki – He was one of the best people I’ve worked for. Always addressed all his employees by name and recognized you for something you did great in the store. Very friendly and visible in his store. Pick and Save’s have never been the same since George left

Jerry Fellenz – I shopped at the South Main store most every week. I would see him greet customers as they entered the store and always thank them as they left. A good guy who worked hard and an asset to the community.

Sue Stautz Meyer – He always had a smile and a kind word. No one was beneath him. His student program helped many a child succeed. He was sincere…you can’t fake that.

Jim Strowig – When I was a kid he has asked me if I needed help finding anything, I always said I know where everything is, always smiled and was cheerful

Tracy Wilson – Great man! Great business! 10 years I worked for him in the floral dept! Those were the good ol days! Loved the team, loved the job, and learned a lot!!

Ryan Lesperance – Best boss I have ever had. You felt proud working hard for him. One of the most generous people I have ever met

Ed Tennies – When the tornado hit WB he opened his heart and store to the community.

Helen Wolf – He was always very friendly and spent a lot of time actually walking around the store talking with employees and customers.

Diane Johns DelVecchio – I worked for George at the store and appreciated all he did for the community. Not only did he have dollars for scholars he had the homeowner program. He would contribute money in a fund for you and after so many years you could use that money to buy a new house, or to do improvements on your existing house. When he sold the business he could have just said sorry that I can’t pass this on to Roundys. He actually distributed the contributions to us. He is the best boss I ever have had!

Mary Rieder I worked at the Pick n Saves from the time George opened the north store in West Bend till he sold to Roundys. Meet my husband there & all 6 of our kids worked at the Pick n Saves at one time or another. We appreciated the Home Ownership program & all of our kids got involved in Dollars for Scholars. George was a great business owner and I have never regretted staying at one job for so many years.

Bob Hamacher George was the best boss I ever worked for. He treated everyone with respect and made you want to give your all for him.

Kerianne Wolf Prescott’s Pick n Save was my very first job as a teen. George was always smiling and asking staff and customers how they were doing and if he could assist in any way. What a great man to work for. He held his everyone to very high standards.

Jim Schwartz We used to live just down the street when Judy and George came to town and managed Super Value they went to work early in the day and came home late. They were both hard workers and community ordinated. Over the years they have contributed many hours, goods and much good will to West Bend. Thanks Judy and George wish you the best

Heather Yahnke-Klump I worked at the North store throughout college. The dollars for scholars program helped me immensely. George was a very nice guy who was very interactive with customers and staff.

 

Judy Steffes, Editor

Washington County Insider

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