Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Remembering “quiet community leader” Jeff Klotz from Klotz’s Piggly Wiggly

Neighbors in West Bend are mourning the loss of community leader Jeff Klotz.

Klotz was co-owner of the Piggly Wiggly in West Bend, Campbellsport and in April 2016 he purchased a store in Fond du Lac.

George Prescott of West Bend was a fellow grocer. “I’ve got a lot of respect for him,” said Prescott. “He had good service, a good reputation and I’m just shocked.”

Bob Bonenfant, formerly with WBKV Radio, knew Klotz personally and worked with him on radio ads.

“I just liked the guy,” said Bonenfant. “I never saw a person who worked so hard in his life. He was always here at the store and he was working.”

Klotz had a very high profile at the store on Highway 33 in West Bend. He could be seen regularly in the aisles wearing his green Piggly Wiggly apron and talking to customers or stocking product.

“For an owner he did everything from stocking shelves to making sure the carts were picked up,” said Bonenfant.

West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow said, “Jeff Klotz was a quiet leader and a man who gave hundreds of high school kids the opportunity to have their first job.”

Todd Tennies said Klotz was always a big supporter of high school athletics. “I know he had a son who was a good football player and he donated a lot to sports groups. He was always very community minded and I’m saddened by his loss,” said Tennies.

Jeff Szukalski, owner of Jeff’s Spirits on Main, was shocked by the news.

“Jeff was a great guy, great friend, great business guy and he cared about the kids in the community,” he said. “He was always there to pitch in for the Food Pantry and for the West Bend Christmas Parade.”

Klotz’s Piggly Wiggly was previously located on N. Main Street in Barton. The store moved to E. Washington Street in 2004. Jeff Klotz was active in the West Bend Baseball Association, West Bend Christmas Parade, youth sports leagues and the West Bend Food Pantry.

The Washington County Sheriff Deputies were called to Klotz’s home in Kewaskum early Friday morning.

An autopsy shows Klotz died from natural causes related to high blood pressure. Services for Jeff Klotz will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church in West Bend. Details will be posted shorlty by the Phillip Funeral Home. Early plans are set for Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Woman crashes into Big Cedar Lake off CTH K and State Hwy 144

Nobody was hurt following a single-vehicle accident early Wednesday morning at State Highway 144 and County Highway K.

Washington County Sheriff Dale Schmidt said a woman from Fond du Lac was eastbound on CTH K and failed to stop at the intersection, continued east and ended up in Big Cedar Lake.

The accident happened shortly after 4:30 a.m. on Oct. 3. “Another motorist called it in. That person said the woman was driving erratically around I41 and CTH K,” said Schmidt. “The woman missed the stop sign at the bottom of the hill and drove into the lake and landed half on the pier.”

Schmidt said alcohol was not a factor in the accident nor a medical condition.

The woman, 38, told authorities she was on I41 and missed her exit. She got confused and took CTH K and was driving at a high rate of speed and didn’t see the stop sign or the intersection.

A citation will be mailed to the woman. Schmidt said she was not injured.

Accepted offer on former Graymont building in downtown West Bend

The former Graymont building, 206 N. Sixth Ave., in downtown West Bend has an accepted offer.

Seed of Hope Center is looking to purchase the building. The medical clinic, based in West Bend, provides free pregnancy testing, sexual health consultations, and parenting education.

“We have been serving Washington County for 26 years,” said executive director Laura Denk. “We’ve moved around a bit and we’ve been thinking we have so many women that come to us and those who love our services and we wanted to put our roots down in Washington County and make it permanent.”

Seed of Hope Center has moved four times in the last 17 years. It is currently located in the office building, 279 S. 17th Avenue, in West Bend. Prior to that it was located in the Spaulding Clinical building off Oak Street and prior to that it was in two different locations in Hartford.

“We love everything about the building but the biggest thing that attracts us to it is the location,” Denk said. “We work so closely with many different agencies in Washington County and we felt we would be surrounded by other agencies that could provide services some of our moms need.”

Denk mentioned Family Promise, Life of Hope, the Department of Social Services, Froedtert St. Joseph’s Hospital and Friends of Abused Families as key partner agencies in the community.

Currently Seed of Hope Center has about 3,000 square feet of space. The site on Sixth Avenue measures a little more than twice that.

“We want to build an educational kitchen so we can teach,” said Denk. “A lot of our moms learn how to set a menu and grocery shop but some don’t and this would be a good opportunity to teach.”

Seed of Hope Center averages 600 – 800 people that take advantage of classes each year.

“Our future, future goal would be to provide not a shelter, but a home for moms prior to giving birth,” Denk said. “Some of the young ladies that come here were never nurtured and they never learned how to be a parent. We’re looking for a short term 6 to 9 month stay that helps these moms learn life skills, deal with their own life struggles and just to get them on their feet so when their baby is born they could raise their own family.”

Denk said the goal would be to be in the same building but they haven’t even explored that yet.

“Buying this building is just a stepping stone,” she said. “The purpose of buying the building is to be one location for all our services.” Denk credited the multiple donors and supporters for assisting in the purchase of the building. The building on the northwest corner of Sixth Avenue and Elm Street was built in 1961.

According to the city assessor the property was assessed at $414,500 in 2018. The total property tax in 2017 was $9,726.13. The portion that went to the BID assessment was $1,320. Seed of Hope Center is a 501c3 non-profit. The city assessor’s office said it would have until March 1, 2019 to apply for exemption. Seed of Hope Center is planning to move into its new location before the end of the year.

In March 2016 the property went up for sale. Below is the archived story from Around the Bend.

Property updates: The former Graymont building, 206 N. Sixth Avenue in West Bend, has finally hit the real estate market. The property is formerly home to Western Lime Corporation. It changed to Graymont in April 2012 after the company moved from a small office above the Husar building.

Last April, Graymont moved across the street to 215 N. Main Street, formerly the Ziegler building.  The property at 206 N. Sixth Ave. was built in 1961, updated in 1994, is 7,500 square feet and is listed by agent Jodi Brandt from RSM Property Management & Realty at $495,000.

The closing date according to RSM Property is November however that date may be pushed up a bit. We’ll keep you posted.

Fire Prevention Week is underway                       By Ron Naab

Since 1922, the NFPA has sponsored the public observance of Fire Prevention Week. In 1925, President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed Fire Prevention Week a national observance, making it the longest-running public health observance in our country.

Fire Prevention Week is observed each year during the week of Oct. 9 in commemoration of the Great Chicago Fire, which began on October 8, 1871, and caused devastating damage.

This horrific fire killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures, and burned more than 2,000 acres of land. Both fires started on Oct. 8 and intensified on Oct. 9. The Peshtigo fire came to a halt when it reached the shores of Lake Michigan.

During Fire Prevention Week the goal is to educate children and adults on being safe in case of a fire. The teaching theme for this year’s Fire Prevention Week is: Look, Listen, Learn. Be aware of your surroundings because fire can happen anywhere. Look for places fire could start around your home, your work place and the places you have fun at. Listen for the sound of the smoke alarm.

Test your smoke detectors, if they are 10 years old replace them. Do a drill so all know what to do and where to go. Finally, learn two ways out of every room and out of your house. Make sure all doors and windows are cleared of any clutter.

In Washington County the week starts off Friday night with the Richfield Fire Company 25th Annual Fire Prevention Week Kick-Off on Friday evening starting at 6:30 until 9 p.m.

There will be a huge display of fire trucks and emergency equipment along with a landing of the Flight for Life Ambulance Helicopter [7:45 pm].    This will be followed by the other departments in the county hosting activities throughout the week.

Washington Co. Fire Prevention Week activities are below:

Allenton Vol. Fire Department and St. Lawrence Fire Company    Pancake Breakfast & Open House on Sunday, Oct. 14, 8 a.m.-12 noon at the Allenton Fire Station

Boltonville Fire Department Open House at Boltonville Fire Station on Monday, Oct. 8, 6-8 p.m.

Fillmore Fire Department Open House on Saturday, Oct. 13, 1-3 p.m.

Germantown FD Fire Safety Fair at Station No. 2 on Edison Dr., Saturday, Oct. 6; 10 a.m. -2 p.m.

Hartford Fire-Rescue Open House on Saturday, Oct. 6, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Jackson Fire Department Open House on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 6 – 8 p.m.

Kewaskum Fire Department Open House on Thursday, Oct. 11, 6:00-8:00 pm

Kohlsville Fire Department Open House on Saturday, Oct. 6, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Richfield Fire Prevention Week Kick-Off at RFC Station 2 on Friday, Oct. 5, 6:30-9:00 pm

Slinger Fire Department Open House at Slinger Community Park on Tuesday, Oct. 9, 6 -8 p.m.

West Bend Fire Department Open House at Station No. 1 on Saturday, Oct. 6, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Washington County Supervisor resignation letter             By William Blanchard

On Thursday, Dist. 11 Washington Co. Supervisor William Blanchard submitted a letter of resignation to the Washington County Board. His letter is below followed by a note from County Administrator Joshua Schoemann

Early on in my life, my parents taught me the importance of giving back to your community.  Whether it was delivering meals on wheels with my dad, mowing the lawn or shoveling the sidewalk of an older neighbor, helping with a handicapped Boy Scout troop or going on mission trips to Mexico to assist with building homes, I have looked for ways to give back and serve those less fortunate.  That sense of giving back has been carried through to my adult life.  For 28 years I have honorably served this country.  I have sacrificed the comforts of home and modern life to serve in other countries.  I have sacrificed time with friends and family for training and deployments.  Additionally, I have volunteered my time as a Firefighter and EMT with Campbellsport Volunteer Fire Department and now as a Firefighter with Boltonville Fire Department.

As my military career winded down and I began to seriously contemplate retirement, I looked for a new way to serve my community.  After serious contemplation and discussions with my family, I decided to run for County Board Supervisor.  I knocked on doors and got to meet many of my neighbors that I otherwise wouldn’t have had the opportunity to meet.  Unfortunately, I didn’t win the election but it was a blessing in disguise as my hero, my Dad, passed away from cancer the day before the election and I needed the time to deal with the loss.  I was thrilled when I learned that the County Board Supervisor position for District 11 was open and even more thrilled when I was appointed to that position in August.

I am devastated that I am now forced, under duress, to resign from my position as Washington County Board Supervisor for District 11.  Over the past few weeks, I have been subjected to harassing calls and threats to resign or else… Why am I being forced to resign?  NOT because I have done anything wrong or committed any ethics violation but, rather, because my mentally ill daughter is receiving services from Washington County.

Therefore, with a heavy heart, I submit this letter as my resignation from my position as Washington County Board Supervisor for District 11.

From: Joshua Schoemann Joshua.Schoemann@co.washington.wi.us Date: Wed, Oct 3, 2018 at 9:16 PM Subject: Resignation Announcement

To: Sent to all County Board Supervisors.

I have received multiple communications from several Supervisors about the email you received from Supervisor Blanchard today announcing his intent to resign as a County Board Supervisor. As with all Board communication I highly advise you to refrain from any discussion amongst yourselves regarding this matter, including any ‘Reply’ or ‘Reply All’ to the original email from Supervisor Blanchard. I only give this advice as the matter may relate to the Open Meetings Law, as it may or may not be discussed by the County Board and as it has been considered by the Ethics Committee.

Please be advised this matter is of a sensitive nature, and thus requires the County’s strictest diligence. While Supervisor Blanchard is certainly allowed to share, as he did, any and all detail he feels appropriate, the County must follow all legal protocols within the ethics realm, as well as within the realm of treating clients and navigating through the court system with clients (if there were to be any).

Please know that Chairman Kriefall, Attorney Stern and I have worked hard to follow these protocols to date, including the process for seeking an ethics opinion via County Code. In the coming days we will work through further protocols to ensure compliance, while informing the Board as legally allowed.

I thank you for your patience, understanding and for not politicizing this 100% non – political matter.

Sincerely and Respectfully,

Joshua Schoemann County Administrator

Slinger student working on Eagle Scout Project             By Alex Lange

I have been very busy these past couple of months with demolition and fundraising on my Eagle Scout Project for the Slinger VFW.

I removed the pergola at Jim’s Place. Then with the help of Kevin Zee Home and Ground Improvement we moved the brat shack, shed and the large tables to allow access to the brick pavers for removal. Later, I removed six light posts and two permanent garbage cans. Some members from my troop volunteered their time to help remove the bricks from the patio and put them on pallets. I also removed the rotted fencing. This Saturday we took the pallets of bricks off the patio and moved them towards the back of the lot with the help of Randy Duquette. This has cleared the way to work on the new foundation.

I have also been very active raising funds. Speaking to local service organizations, churches and businesses that also have been very supportive of my project. Tile sales for the Honor and Appreciation Wall have been steady as well. I have enough funds to begin buying some of the necessary supplies to begin rebuilding, starting with the foundation.

City of West Bend recognized as Ice Age Trail Community

The City of West Bend received special recognition this week as an Ice Age Trail Community.

The Certificate of Special Senatorial Recognition read: Congratulations on your recognition by the Ice Age Trail Alliance as an Ice Age Trail Community. Thank you for your deep respect for the rich history of this area and your commitment to enhancing awareness of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail.  Signed United States Senator Ron Johnson.

Dist. 6 alderman Steve Hoogester presented the announcement during the Common Council meeting.

In June 2017 the West Bend Common Council approved the Ice Age Trail Alliance property acquisition on Highway 33. The woodsy lot belonged to the Living Trust of Sharon E. Marth. The parcel was 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.

West Bend Fire Department Citizen Awards

The West Bend Fire Department handed out a couple of citizen awards during the Monday night Common Council meeting.  This is the 2018 Fire Department Citizen Appreciation Awards.

Deputy Fire Chief Charles Beistle recognized Washington County Sheriff Deputies Timothy Dexter and Justin Jilling and Kewaskum volunteer firefighter Josh Harter were recognized for helping at a house fire in Dec. 20, 2017.

On December 20, 2017, Deputies Jilling and Dexter were enroute to serve a warrant when they noticed an unusual amount of dark colored smoke coming from a residence in the area. Upon investigation they found dark colored smoke originating from the rear of a residence. Already on scene was Josh Harter (a volunteer firefighter from Kewaskum) who works in the area and saw the smoke himself. He stated that he had already called 911 and was attempting to alert the occupants. Deputies and Mr. Harter attempted to alert residents who were not home. They also used extinguishers to attempt to put out the fire. Through the efforts of all the individuals involved they helped reduce the property damage by early notification of fire department and Deputies using their extinguishers. With their efforts they also saved the lives of family pets inside the house, that were later rescued by the fire department.

Steve Eklund and his wife were also recognized for contacting the WBFD about faulty lighting on their Christmas tree. On Monday January 8, 2018, Steve Eklund and his wife were taking down their artificial Christmas tree when it began to smoke. It gave off a choking electrical smell which filled the room. He unplugged the tree which took away any further hazard. He contacted the fire department after investigating and found the LED wiring system had failed and began to overheat. He brought his findings and tree to the fire station and reported his findings. All information was passed on to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission. Mr. Ecklund was willing to put in the extra interest and effort to try to make sure this doesn’t happen to somebody else. If this would have happened during the night or other times when adults were not right there, I believe it would have been worse results possibly even fatal.

Halloween Trick or Treat in Washington County                By Samantha Sali

Halloween is almost here. Here are some of the trick-or-treat times for Washington, Ozaukee, and Dodge Counties.

Thursday, October 25, 2018  – Mayville (Downtown), 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, October 27, 2018  – Cedarburg, 5 – 8 p.m., Grafton, 5 – 8 p.m., Farmington, 4 – 7 p.m., Hartford (Downtown), 1:00 – 2:30 p.m., Kewaskum, 5 – 7 p.m., Port Washington, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Downtown Trick or Treat (Participating businesses will have a pumpkin in the window.) 4 – 7 p.m. city-wide trick or treat, Richfield, 3 – 6 p.m., Slinger, 5 – 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.), Trenton, 4 – 6 p.m., West Bend, 4 – 6 p.m.

Sunday, October 28, 2018 – Addison, 3:00 – 6 p.m., Belgium, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., Jackson, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m., Mayville (City), 1:00 – 3:00 p.m., Mequon, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., Saukville, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., Thiensville, 3:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018  Halloween – Germantown, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Hartford (City), 6 – 8 p.m.

Don’t forget the Downtown West Bend Association will host its annual Fall Fest on Friday, Oct. 12 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.  Dress up in your Halloween costume and trick or treat in downtown West Bend. Look for the pumpkin in the window of participating businesses.

There will be lots of spooktacular activities for the whole family to enjoy including face painting by Maverick Tattoos LLC and balloon art by First Baptist Church of West Bend, Wisconsin.   Compete in pumpkin bowling sponsored by Slesar Glass Shop and Sals Pizzeria! Roll a hand-size pumpkin knock down pins and win prizes.

Updates & tidbits

 In-person absentee voting is underway in Washington County for the Nov. 6 General Election.

– Visit Heritage House, Cedar Community’s restored turn-of-the-century farmhouse, located at their main campus, 5595 County Road Z, West Bend, on Saturday, Oct. 6 from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. for a family fun day. Tour Heritage House and Ye Olde School, enjoy complimentary desserts and refreshments, musical entertainment, fall color rides throughout the beautiful trails, old-fashioned school games and pumpkin decorating. This event is open to the public and free to attend.

– The VFW Post #1393 in West Bend, 260 Sand Drive, is gearing up to host its annual spaghetti dinner on Saturday, Oct. 13 from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.. All money raised goes to the organizations general fund. Bring the family and come join us.

– The Allenton Volunteer Fire Department and St. Lawrence Fire Company have announced plans for their annual Pancake Breakfast and Open House in conjunction with Fire Prevention Week. This year’s event will be Sunday, Oct. 14 from 8 a.m. to 12 noon at the Allenton Fire Department.

– The annual Interfaith Tea is just around the corner and you’re invited. This year’s theme is Tailgating. Celebrity waiters will serve you and your guests and there will be an amazing silent auction, a fun purse auction, 50-50 raffle and a beer and wine pull. Lots of fun on tap and all for a good cause. Interfaith Caregivers of Washington County is a local organization that matches volunteers with senior citizens to help with doctor appointments, shopping, cleaning and just paying it forward. Reserve your seat today and contact Interfaith Caregivers of Washington County.  See you Oct. 14 at the West Bend Mutual Prairie Center.

– Hartford’s H.e.l.p. Corner at Redeemer Church is slated to open mid-September.

– Rally Time Sports Bar and Grill in West Bend is looking for a part-time line cook position. Rally Time has a family-friendly team atmosphere. The position is primarily day shift and coverage as needed. Call Dan at 262-389-1142 or Cindy at 262-389-0839 or stop at the bar for an application.

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