Category Archives: Off-Duty

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

West Bend Plan Commission to consider Kwik Trip No. 4

The West Bend Plan Commission will hold a public hearing Tuesday, June 11 to consider a rezoning and a request for a conditional use permit for a gas station on 5.9 acres of land.

The parcel involves 1610 E. Washington Street, the vacant land adjacent to the west of that property and the vacant lot on S. River Road north of 411 E. Washington Street.

The request is being made by Kwik Trip. If approved this would be the fourth Kwik Trip in West Bend. Early plans show two entrances off Schoenhaar Drive, an entrance off River Road and another off E. Washington Street, a convenience store and a car wash.

The public hearing is being held for a request to amend the 2020 Comprehensive Plan for a change in recommended land use from industrial land use to commercial land use for approximately 0.77 acres of land located on the east side of N. River Road, approximately 300’ north of E. Washington Street, by Kwik Trip, Inc.

On May 7, 2019 the Plan Commission reviewed the request for a change in land use from industrial to commercial and zoning from M-2 Heavy Industrial to B-1 Community Business District for an approximately 0.77 acre outlot located approximately 300’ north of E. Washington Street on the east side of N. River Road. As a part of the review, the Plan Commission set a public hearing date for June 11, 2019 at 6:00 pm to hear any comments or concerns regarding the proposed land use change and zoning request.

In 2014, the then owner of the property obtained a land use and zoning change for the outlot. The outlot was going to be combined with the industrial lands to the north for a building expansion. Kwik Trip is now requesting a change to return the land use and zoning for the outlot to a commercial use to allow this outlot to be combined with adjacent commercially zoned lands for development.

The surrounding existing land uses are; industrial to the north, commercial to the west, south and east of the outlot. Given the surrounding existing uses, staff finds the proposed use would be an acceptable alternative since the lands would be combined with other commercial lands to the east for development.

Prior to revising the zoning from M-2 Heavy Industrial District to B-1 Community Business District, as requested, the City’s 2020 Comprehensive Plan would need to be amended to be consistent with the proposed zoning. The Plan Commission meeting gets underway at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, June 11 in the council chambers at City Hall. The meeting is open to the public.

Longbranch for sale in Barton    

The former Long Branch Saloon in Barton is for sale…. again. Adam Williquette, Broker and Owner of American Commercial Real Estate, listed the property this week for $425,000.

The parcel, 1800 Barton Avenue, last sold Feb. 9, 2018 to Boro Buzdum for $100,000.

In 2018 the property was listed through Re/Max United and Paula Becker. It was initially priced at $184,500 and eventually dropped to $139,000.

The property was last assessed at $242,200. The local restaurant at the corner of Barton Avenue and Commerce Street closed in early 2016.  Over the years the building went to a Sheriff’s sale and then got hung up in the system.

Scharschmidt Chiropractic building has been sold

The former Schaarschmidt Chiropractic building, also known as the castle building, 235 N. 18th Avenue in West Bend has sold.

Kurt and Janine Schaarschmidt built the 5,385-square-foot office space.  “This used to be an apple orchard owned by the Barth sisters,” said Kurt Schaarschmidt. “We opened Dec. 20, 1991 and Larry Bunkelman from Bunkelman Builders was our builder.”

Schaarschmidt said he was going for an English Tudor look. “Originally it was a house plan that came out of Arizona and we adapted it to a clinic,” said Janine Schaarschmidt.

Daniel Hess from Glendale closed on the purchase of the building March 23, 2016 for $625,000. It has been vacant and for lease since February 2017.

The 2019 assessment on the property was $720,900. Dr. Krysti Wick from River Shores Chiropractic in West Bend purchased the property.  The sale price was $560,000.

“This is going to be our forever home in West Bend,” said Wick.

A couple of things that attracted Wick to the property were that it was a chiropractic clinic before so “there’s not a ton of setup needed inside.” Wick expects to relocate her practice within the next year. “It has a homey, family feel,” she said. “My hope is we’ll move into the building sometime next year at this time.”

Adam Williquette, Broker and Owner of American Commercial Real Estate oversaw the transaction.

Washington Co. Board to vote Wed., June 12 on county executive form of government

There will be a meeting Wednesday, June 12 when the Washington County Board Executive Committee is expected to vote to convert Washington County to a county executive form of government.

Washington County currently operates with an appointed county administrator. The proposal is to make that a non-partisan elected position.

There was a public discussion held May 22. County Supervisors and members of the community who favored the change mentioned things like “managing development” and needing “new ideas and new people.”

Those against electing a county executive noted things like having “less representation from less populated areas” and “giving too much power to one man.”

Diane Petersen of Richfield brought up a number of points at the public discussion including the fact the county administrator could be removed by the county board but an elected county executive could only be removed by the governor.

After the public meeting some neighbors in attendance expressed concern about losing farmland to development, having little representation from smaller towns and villages in the county and concerns about a comment made by a county supervisor to reduce the size of the county board again, which would mean more power held by a few.

County attorney Brad Stern said once the resolution is approved there’s no going back. “The only way to undo it is for the community to file a petition and ask for a referendum,” he said. “The county board just can’t change it’s mind and go back to the old way of doing thing.”

Stern said according to statute the decision on changing the county’s form of government could be done by a petition referendum or the decision could be made by the county board.

Also note, in the resolution language, the termination of the contract with the current county administrator would cost “approximately $130,000 and does not include wages and benefits due under the contract terms through the date of transition. Additional fiscal impact is indeterminate at this time including possible additional election costs.”

Restoring the interior art at the Historic West Bend Theatre   | By John Torinus

Historic West Bend Theatre, Inc. (HWBT) has selected Conrad Schmitt Studios, Inc., of New Berlin, along with renowned local artist Chuck Dwyer, as its contractor for replication of the artwork that decorated the original 1929 interior of the “house.”

A historic paint analysis revealed elaborate artwork throughout the movie house. Much of it was stenciled art that covers the pilasters, spaces below eight well-preserved urns, beams and ceiling.

The artwork was painted over sometime during its 90-year history with maroon paint.

Tracings and digital photos of the stencil patterns will guide the artists in replicating the bright and colorful artwork throughout the historic building.

Eileen Grogan of Conrad Schmitt said a process similar to the original stencil process would be used in the restoration.

“All the history is there,” she said. “We are going to restore it by the book.”

Conservator Brian Fick with Evergreene Architectural Arts was the one who uncovered the five-color stencil pattern on a shield shape with two birds. “It looks a bit Germanic which, in an art-deco context is a little odd but it kind of suits the area,” he said.

Fick uncovered the mural using solvents and gels. A large breathing apparatus is on the floor next to the dusty theatre seats.

“I knew there was something there because I could see a bit of shadow,” he said.

Pointing to the ceiling Fick highlights some of the black lines of another pattern of work.

“This piece will be documented and I’m taking samples,” Fick said. “We take the paint from the plaster it’s painted on all the way through to the top layer. We then cut that so you see the paint layers in cross section and that can give a better, more accurate representation of what the color was.” The cost of the artwork reparation will be about $100,000.

“We had not expected to discover that added historical element for the building,” said Nic Novaczyk, HWBT president. “We did not budget for this unforeseen expense, so we are asking our broad base of supporters in the community to help raise this added amount.”

There will be a community event July 18 to help with that ask.

Conrad Schmitt president Gunar Gruenke said the firm has retained Dwyer, a well-known regional artist in the intricate project. Dwyer was Valedictorian from the Milwaukee School of Art and Design (now MIAD) and studied in Europe. His restoration assignments include the Cathedral of Notre Dame and the murals at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City.

Dwyer said he didn’t much notice the artwork in the theatre when he was a kid at movies. “I was more worried about whether I could hold the girl’s hand,” he said.  “I’ll do the best job I can. It will be a lot of fun.”

Saying goodbye to the legacy of St. Joe’s Hospital as name changed to Froedtert West Bend

Froedtert hospitals including St. Joseph’s Hospital Campus in the Town of Polk is going to have a name change. Community names, according to Tom Duncan, vice present and COO of Froedtert South, is the goal.

According to an article in The Journal Times Duncan was quoted saying, “By emphasizing community location and the Froedtert name, we will identify to local residents that they have access across the region to the high-quality service for which Froedtert Hospital is known.”

The name of St. Joseph’s Hospital dates to the late 1920’s when the cornerstone of the original hospital was ‘laid in November 1929 and in spite of a rigorous winter, building progressed rapidly, and the dedication ceremony took place July 2, 1930.’

At the time St. Joe’s was located on the corner of Silverbrook and Oak Street in West Bend.

Former nurses and doctors recalled a community hospital where staff was family.

The news of a name change felt like the next shoe to drop according to former St. Joe’s staff including Carol Daniels.

“I knew that would happen; there’s no way they would not advertise their business,” said Daniels of West Bend.

Shirley Laufer, 80, has been retired from St. Joe’s for 13 years.

“It’s a sign of the times,” said Laufer. “To anybody that’s new in the area they consider it Froedtert but you think St. Joe’s you think West Bend. I still think the name St. Joe’s kinda gives you an idea of where it’s at and to people who live in the area will always know it as St. Joe’s.”

New active senior living apartment complex in downtown West Bend

A proposed five to six-story active senior living apartment-style complex is being proposed near downtown West Bend. The site is a 4.45-acre parcel on the south end of the former Gehl property just to the west of S. Forest Avenue.

RTN Development, LLC, based in Minnesota, stepped forward with the proposal and in closed session at Monday night’s, June 3, Common Council meeting entered into an with the City. The purchase of the property is still being negotiated.

Todd Novaczyk, is CEO with RTN Development.  “This will be a market-rate rental,” said Novaczyk. “There will be about 130 to 150 units with underground parking.”

The new development is proposed to be for active seniors who will then have the luxury of enjoying our vibrant downtown while living in a facility with outstanding amenities provided by company with a proven track record of success.

Novaczyk said the timeline on the development hinges on several factors. “If we can get through City Council and get our plans done and get approvals, we could conceivably break ground this fall,” he said. That former Gehl Company property had been under remediation for the past 7+ years.

MOWA | DTN opens Tuesday, June 4 in Milwaukee

The Museum of Wisconsin Art is expanding as a satellite gallery opens in the new Saint Kate Arts Hotel today in Downtown Milwaukee.

“I’m really excited for this extended space,” said MOWA Executive Director Laurie Winters.

The new hotel is the former InterContinental Hotel, 139 E. Kilbourn Ave; it’s part of the Marcus Hotels & Resorts Inc. One of the first pieces of art at MOWA | DTN features a poet phone by Mark Claussen. “If that takes you back a couple of decades, it should,” said Winters. “It’s a revitalized booth from the late ’70s and if you pick up the receiver you hear poems by seven of the greatest poets in Wisconsin all about downtown in keeping with the theme of the exhibition.”

Listen in as Winters explains part of the inspiration toward expanding MOWA’s reach. “The river will carry your mission throughout the state,” said artist Truman Lowe.

Winters said Greg and Linda Marcus invited MOWA to be part of the Saint Kate Art Hotel and the “answer was a resounding yes, absolutely.”

“It took us about two seconds to make the decision because Greg and Linda have the highest standards and they have an incredible vision for art.

The first exhibition for MOWA | DTN is called ‘Downtown.’

“We asked 10 artists to reflect on what downtown means to them,” said Winters. Each room at the Saint Kate Arts Hotel comes with a red phonograph and a ukulele. MOWA | DTN at Saint Kate The Arts Hotel is free and open to the public.

RSVP Interfaith of Washington County Senior Corps Program of the Year  

The Interfaith RSVP program through Interfaith Caregivers of Washington County began in 2017. Based in West Bend, their mission is “to connect seniors with caring volunteers” with a vision that “all seniors in Washington County will have access to the resources necessary to                maintain safe, healthy independence and age in place.”

RSVP Interfaith of Washington County provides volunteer transportation and other assistance services for anyone in the county who is over the age of 60 and is of limited means and                mobility. In 2018, RSVP Interfaith of Washington County volunteers served over 1,000 elderly citizens in Washington County with 11,708 rides in a volunteer’s personal vehicle or in one of Interfaith’s fleet of 8 wheelchair accessible minivans.

In 2018, RSVP volunteers drove over 220,000 miles to 290 unique service destinations, with over 2,000 of these rides serving wheelchair-bound seniors and over 3,500 to out of county destinations where public transportation does not serve.

Interfaith RSVP volunteers also provided over 5,000 “other” assistance services, including spring and fall yard clean-up, friendly visits, therapy dog visits, reassurance calls, light housekeeping, home repair, snow shoveling, stock box and meals on wheels delivery, and other services as requested

Additionally, RSVP volunteers operate a durable health equipment lending program at two sites in Washington County and a community resource referral program, making it possible to loan out over 1,000 pieces of equipment. Through the transportation services that allow seniors to continue to live independently, the socialization and companionship provided to home bound seniors through friendly visits, and to seniors as a whole through other services, Washington County is a better place for its aging population because of the service of RSVP Interfaith of Washington County volunteers.

Updates & tidbits

– St. John’s Lutheran in West Bend raised $1,950 with the Eaton’s Fresh Pizza fundraiser program.  They were able to put the money towards getting a new drinking fountain/ bubbler with a water bottle dispenser.

– Richfield Village Administrator James Healy was elected President of Washington County Convention and Visitor Bureau Board.

– West Bend City Clerk Stephanie Justmann swore in Matthew Casey during this week’s Common Council meeting. Fire Chief Gerald Kudek said Casey worked at County Rescue Services in Green Bay and served the Village of Howard Fire/Rescue as a part-time employee. Casey received his paramedic associate degree from Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. Casey also served in the military and was deployed overseas. He was awarded the Army Achievement Medal for mission success in Guantanamo Bay.

– The Knights of Columbus are sponsoring Dad’s Day 2019.  The event is June 15 at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton from noon – 4 p.m.  There will be activities including a Bounce House with slide, food and games including a Wiffle Ball tournament.   

Letter to the Editor | No need for elected Washington County executive | By Jed Dolnick

Since Washington County was established in 1853, its county boards made it through the Second Industrial Revolution, the Civil War, two world wars, the Great Depression, and the Information Age.

Two courthouses, a modern jail, highway system, and a fair park were built.  Neither the boards nor their chairmen were intimidated by the challenges of those times.

A board that had vision and courage now has members who want a county executive to, as Vice-Chairman Mark McCune told a newspaper reporter, “make the tough decisions.”

To listen to Chairman Don Kriefall, you would think a county executive is the single, essential person necessary for the county’s economic development. It’s as if the combined talent and resources of county staff, each municipality’s development office, and the public-private partnership of Economic Development Washington County don’t exist.

Or perhaps this is the opening gambit to “consolidate” (i.e. take over) those functions. To just perform his current duties, the existing county administrator is assisted by a “deputy county administrator” and a “public affairs coordinator.”

How many additional positions would this potential Development Czar need? Promises of “none” are often forgotten. Currently, supervisors representing their districts’ residents pass ordinances and resolutions, and decide how tax money is used. All of those decisions can be vetoed by a county executive. It’s difficult to believe that a board that can’t make tough decisions could summon the strength to overturn such a veto.

Mr. Kriefall asserts that an elected executive will assure our “quality of life.”

The cities and villages see their parks as valuable assets; the county officially ranks its parks as a low priority. Our municipalities have successfully pursued commercial, industrial, and residential development appropriate for their communities. It’s not the county executive’s job to, as he wrote, “work with developers to construct housing.”

Mr. Kriefall’s vision of county government insinuating itself into the operations of our cities, towns, and villages with “one voice, one leader” is unnecessary and unwelcomed.

An elected county executive will look to interest groups for their endorsements and money and will need the voting blocs in West Bend and Hartford to stay in office. We don’t need a county executive. We need 26 county supervisors willing to make tough decisions.

Jed Dolnick  West Bend

Disclaimer: Opinions and letters published in are not necessarily the views of the Editor, or Publisher.

Around the Bend bu Judy Steffes

Restoration underway on a much-loved holiday hallmark

A transformation is underway for a much-loved seasonal display in West Bend. A local shopkeeper is using his hidden talents to repair and restore the figures in the Rolfs Nativity.  With the patience of a saint he’s stripped the figures to their natural color and mended the hands, head and crowns.

The holiday hallmark is weathered… and that’s putting it nicely. Heavy metal staples are visible around the neck of the life-size Joseph statue, segments of crusty foam are visible on the tattered robes of the Wise Men and the Shepherd Boy looks diseased. The project has silently been underway for months as a pledge has been made to bring the Rolfs Nativity back to its full glory.

Slinger High School student achieves top ACT score

Allan Elfe Jr., son of Allan Elfe and Laura Elfe, and a junior at Slinger High School, earned the highest possible ACT composite score of 36.

Only around two-tenths of 1 percent of students who take the ACT earn a top score.

In the U.S. high school graduating class of 2018, only 3,741 out of more than 1.9 million graduates who took the ACT earned a top composite score of 36.

The ACT consists of tests in English, mathematics, reading and science, each scored on a scale of 1–36. A student’s composite score is the average of the four test scores. The score for ACT’s optional writing test is reported separately and is not included within the ACT composite score.

In a letter to the student recognizing this exceptional achievement, ACT CEO Marten Roorda said, “Your achievement on the ACT is significant and rare. Your exceptional scores will provide any college or university with ample evidence of your readiness for the academic rigors that lie ahead.”

The ACT is a curriculum-based achievement exam that measures what students have learned in school. Students who earn a 36 composite score have likely mastered all the skills and knowledge they will need to succeed in first-year college courses in the core subject areas.

ACT scores are accepted by all major four-year colleges and universities across the US.

There are 11 veterans from Washington County on June 1 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Eleven veterans from Washington County are on today’s, June 1, Honor Flight. They include: Vietnam Army Douglas Janzen of Germantown, Vietnam Army James Miller of Hartford, Vietnam Army George Marquardt of Hubertus, Vietnam Navy Charles Nornberg of Jackson, Korea Army Gerald Wentlandt of Jackson, Vietnam Navy Jerold Donath of Kewaskum, Vietnam Air Force Martin Fochs of Kewaskum, Vietnam Marines John Fleischman of Kewaskum, Vietnam Navy Daniel Lukaszewicz of West Bend, Vietnam Air Force Bruce Witt of West Bend, Vietnam Army Robert Graff of West Bend. The June 1 Honor Flight will be the organization’s 52nd “mission.”

Museum of Wisconsin Art receives $22,600 JEM Grant from Wisconsin Dept. of Tourism

The Wisconsin Department of Tourism (Travel Wisconsin) presented a $22,600 check this week to the Museum of Wisconsin Art to help support its upcoming exhibit Among the Wonders of the Dells.

Anne Sayers, deputy secretary with the Wisconsin Department of Tourism, received a sneak peek of the exhibit. “I saw photos online but just being in this space it’s an incredible thing to be a part of,” she said. “This is an exhibit that will be of great interest to Wisconsinites and others.”

MOWA executive director Laurie Winters said the Joint Effort Marketing (JEM) Grant will help promote the “160-year legacy of The Dells.”

Among the Wonders of the Dells presents more than 100 photographs from eight artists recounting the fascinating history and transformation of Wisconsin Dells.

There will be an Opening Party on Saturday, June 1 for the latest exhibit.

Among the Wonders of the Dells will feature photographs by Leroy J. Gates, the first photographer of the Dells, H. H. Bennett, the great nineteenth-century photographer touted as “the man who made the Wisconsin Dells famous,” Bennett Studio, John A. Trumble, who documented the Dells’ postwar tourist boom in the twentieth century, Dennis Darmek, and three contemporary Wisconsin photographers commissioned by MOWA to spend a year photographing the Dells from their unique perspectives: Mark Brautigam, Tom Jones, and Kevin J. Miyazaki.

Korean War vet Gerald Wentlandt, 86, of Jackson on Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali

Korean War veteran Gerald Wentlandt, 86, of Jackson, is heading to Washington D.C. on the June 1 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Wentlandt was born in 1932 and grew up in Milwaukee. “I graduated from Boys Tech in 1950 and then got a six-year apprenticeship at a printing company,” he said.

Wentlandt had two years of the apprenticeship under his belt before being drafted into the Army to serve in the Korean War. “That was in March 1952,” he said. “I think at that time they had a draft office set up downtown, so my folks took me down in the morning and dropped me off. They gave me a physical, but it wasn’t a real physical, just more of a once over. I can’t remember if we were sworn in that day, but afterward they took us out for lunch at at an Italian place called Mimi’s.”

With a few extra hours to spare, Wentlandt and the other new draftees were told they could call their parents to come down and spend time with them before leaving. “I’m an only child, so saying goodbye the first time to my mom was the hardest,” he shared. “My mom was crying and kept looking up at my dad to do something, which of course he couldn’t do anything. I didn’t want to call again and do the goodbyes again.”

Wentlandt was taken to Camp Chaffee, mostly an artillery base, in Arkansas for Basic Training. “The difference between a Camp and a Fort is that a Camp is temporary, and a Fort is permanent,” he explained. “My experience wasn’t too bad because I had just gone to Boys Tech. It was almost like going to high school again, just a little stricter. I thought I adjusted pretty good. They had really old, wooden barracks…nothing like it is today.”

After Basic Training ended, Wentlandt stayed in Camp Chaffee for four extra weeks, where he took a Fire Direction Control (FDC) course. When that was finished, he was able to go home for 10-15 days and then received his shipping orders. “If you got orders to report to New York or New Jersey, you were probably going to wind up in Germany,” Wentlandt said. “If you were to report to Fort Lewis, you were probably going to end up in Korea. I read my orders and I had to go to Fort Lewis. I waited two weeks for more orders and one day the sergeant comes walking through the barracks telling us to pack up and move out. It turned out that the last four guys on the roll-call roster were being sent to Alaska.”

Wentlandt shared that once the weather hit 40 degrees below zero, there was nothing they could really do except keep warm and keep the vehicles running. “When I reported to headquarters, they asked me if I could type…I couldn’t,” he said. “They were just filling holes where they needed someone. I wound up in FDC battalion. At the time, there was only one railroad connecting Anchorage to Fairbanks. There were no roads that went into Fairbanks because of the mountains and rivers. It was really cut off up there. The Northern Lights you could really see. I went back 50 years later, and Fairbanks hasn’t changed.”

Wentlandt’s service ended in 1954 and he went back to Milwaukee to finish his apprenticeship. After that, he worked at Trade Press until he eventually retired.

Not long after his service ended, Wentlandt and his friends went to The Eagles dance hall one evening. It was there that he met his wife, Joan. Together, they have two children, six grandchildren, and soon will have five great-grandchildren.

“My son, David, is the Police Chief in Butler,” said Wentlandt. “He wanted me sign up for the Honor Flight. I didn’t really want to at first. I thought this Honor Flight was for the guys that saw action, but David said that I could and should go. David goes down there and helps get things organized for the Honor Flights and he was really the one that talked me into going.”

Modern Woodmen of West Bend supports Medical Foundation of Hartford | By Daniel L Frey

Sarah Grotelueschen Financial Representative with Modern Woodmen Fraternal Financial recently presented a check for $1,000 to Deb Holtan with the Medical Foundation of Hartford. The check was a matching fund from recent events at Faith and Giggles in Hartford along with the Medical Foundation of Hartford. The event was “Denim Days” and it helps people in the community to consider giving donations to or support a victim of sexual assault or domestic violence.

Vietnam veteran James Miller of Hartford on June Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran James Miller, 72, of Hartford, is heading to Washington D.C. on the June 1 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Miller was born in 1946 to Franklin, a car salesman, and Angeline, a housewife. Miller and his family lived in Milwaukee, where he graduated St. John’s Cathedral High School. Miller remembers his first car a 1955 Plymouth.

After high school, he attended and graduated from MIT (now MATC) before getting a job in the accounting department of BlueCross BlueShield. Not long after working for BlueCross, Miller was drafted into the military. “I got my notification December 1967. I was nervous and scared overall,” he said.

Miller completed Basic Training in Fort Benning, Georgia. “It was a real treat,” said Miller. “At the time, basic was eight weeks. It was tough. I was not a physically fit person at that time and had to really keep it up to make it through.”

“After seven weeks, you start prepping for graduation and you get your orders,” Miller said. “Most of the draftees were being sent to Fort Polk, which was called Little Vietnam, for infantry training. Ten of us didn’t get orders on the day everyone else did. We were called to the Captain’s office two days later and told the 10 of us have been pulled and we’d be remaining at Fort Benning and going into the finance company for post…I ended up doing permanent personnel payroll.”

Miller admitted he was extremely lucky to have been able to serve his entire length of service in Fort Benning, “For a draftee…talk about getting down on your knees and thanking the Lord.”

Miller’s service ended in January 1969 and when he came home, he went back to work at BlueCross for six months before pursuing other accounting jobs. He officially retired in April 2015.

He and his wife of 48 years, Nancy, have three children together and Miller plans on being outside this summer, enjoying his favorite pastime of tending to yard work and mowing the lawn.

Aside from being excited to see the memorials in Washington DC, Miller opened up about the other reason he’s looking forward to the flight. “When we went home, we weren’t acknowledged. Our commanding officer told us we should try to avoid wearing our uniforms in the airport due to protesters and stuff like that. My friends and family welcomed me back, but when the Honor Flight came up, I just felt it would be nice thing to do.”

Hy-Brid Lifts in Richfield featured in Wall Street Journal for creative hiring practices

Hy-Brid Lifts in Richfield recently was featured in an article in the Wall Street Journal regarding what to do to fill jobs and keep production on track in a tight labor market.

The article by Ruth Simon is titled, ‘I Don’t Want to See Him Fail’: A Firm Takes a Chance on Ex-Inmates

Terry Dolan is President and CEO of Hy-Brid Lifts. “Like a lot of small manufacturing companies in the state of Wisconsin, we’ve been dealing with the difficulty of hiring employees especially bringing them into manufacturing, so we’ve gone a couple of different routes,” said Dolan.

Aside from working with local high schools and creating more part-time shifts, Hy-Brid Lifts has also partnered with the Department of Corrections.  “We’ve brought people in who are currently serving time but going through an educational program through the Milwaukee Area Technical College,” he said.

“This has worked fantastic. The employees show up every day on time, they’re brought from their facility to our facility, they’ve been assigned a mentor and each one is learning a trade; they’ve been great employees.”

Questioned whether the company or its regular employees had any reservations, Dolan said “not at all.”

“We had experience with a person we hired who was on work release, we also talked to our employees and we felt confident working with our mentors and the Department of Corrections.”

Dolan said his peers in the industry and others across the state realize they’ve got to find unique ways to keep production moving forward.

“This is a challenging time,” he said. “We’re at less than 3 percent unemployment in the state of Wisconsin, we’re not the biggest company so we really had to find unique ways to secure our employee base and bring in talented workers who want to be here and learn a trade.”

A portion of the article in the Wall Street Journal reads:

America’s tight job market has employers looking beyond their traditional labor pools—hiring workers needing flexible hours, letting more work from home, lowering education requirements.

At tiny Progressive, Mr. Walters is experimenting with putting former inmates into vacancies. He is experiencing both the ups and downs: Hiring people with criminal records can pay off but keeping them on the job sometimes presents heart-rending dilemmas.

“The tough part of it,” Mr. Walters says, “is how much rope do you allow? How much leniency do you give before you become unfair to the business or other employees?”

Is there a line between being a good boss and a good person? “It’s something I struggle with.”

Former inmates often grapple with issues that test the most motivated among them—homelessness, strained family relationships, substance abuse. Many return to troubled neighborhoods.

Dolan said he’s very connected with the shop at Hy-Brid Lifts and monitors production and staffing closely. “I’m extremely appreciative of the people who work here,” he said. “The people are always thanking us for the opportunity and talking to me about what they’ve learned.”

Dolan said we are all fighting for employees and “we have to help our community and I think this is an excellent way for us to satisfy the need and be responsible to our community.”

West Bend Defenders baseball team gives back to the community | By Ray Luokka

West Bend Defenders baseball team does not only play baseball, but every other month will give back to the community by volunteering for various community projects.

WEST BEND DEFENDERS ⚾️ “If You Build It, They Will Come”

May 18, 2019 was a fun fulfilling day for the U11 West Bend Defenders. They had a chance to give back to the community by helping with improvements to the Villa Park baseball field.  “You teach them by the way you conduct yourself. Be a good role model and don’t cause them to stumble”

Updates & tidbits

– Get your tickets for Washington County Breakfast on the Farm on Saturday, June 8. Doors open at 1207 Highland Drive at 6:30 a.m. as Breakfast on the Farm will be held at Highland Dairy, LLC this year in Kewaskum. Mike, Linda and Corey Enright are set to roll out the red carpet and invite guests to tour the robotic farm, compete in pedal tractor pull, listen to live music and share in some eggs, ham and applesauce. Tickets at the door are $7 and in advance $6. Children 3 and under are free.

– Bango, the mascot from the Milwaukee Bucks, was in West Bend on Tuesday, May 28 to help dedicate the new basketball/pickleball/volleyball courts at Regner Park. Bucks at ribbon cutting for basketball court. The complex is part of the upgrade at Regner Park, 800 N. Main Street. The sport court is made of a grid of super-strong material for year-round play. The hoops have a glass backboard and the height can be adjusted. There is also a pulley and crank system to raise or lower nets for volleyball or pickleball.

– Holy Angels Parish, 138 N. Eighth Ave., West Bend will hold its “Festival of Angels” June 7, 8 and 9 this year with fun for the whole family. Just two blocks south of Hwy 33 on Eighth Avenue, the fun starts at 5 p.m. Friday.

– The Knights of Columbus are sponsoring Dad’s Day 2019.  The event is June 15 at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton from noon – 4 p.m.  There will be activities including a Bounce House with slide, food and games including a Wiffle Ball tournament.

– The City of West Bend announced that Menards three-year property tax assessment challenge has ended. Menards has withdrawn its case that had been scheduled to go to the circuit court in June 2019. “West Bend has been a leader in combating the dark store theory,” said City of West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow.  “I am proud of our city council and staff for their resistance to buckle to the big box pressure to accept a settlement offer. Any type of settlement would have caused a tax shift to other city property taxpayers. This was unacceptable in my opinion.” Mayor Sadownikow now calls on the Wisconsin State Legislature, “to have intestinal fortitude to adopt statewide legislation which closes the dark store loophole thereby preventing these frivolous and costly lawsuits from reoccurring in the future.”

Remembering “a true cow man” Richard “Dick” Henry Mayer, 84, of Slinger

Richard “Dick” Henry Mayer, 84, of Slinger, slipped away to be with his Lord in the early hours of Thursday, May 30. Dick graduated from Slinger High School in 1953 and farmed with his father and brothers Bob and Fritz. Mayer Farms was well known for developing outstanding Holstein genetics. Dick was a true cow man. He judged numerous county and state Holstein shows, and served on numerous All-American Selection Committees. He was active in the County, State, and National Holstein Association, and served on the Washington County Holstein Board for many years, where he started the County Junior Holstein Association. He also served on the Wisconsin Holstein Board for 12 years. Funeral Services for Dick will be held at 4 p.m. on Sunday, June 2 at Faith UCC Church (2895 Slinger Rd. Slinger) with Rev. Sharon Stier presiding. Visitation will be held on Sunday at the church from 12:30 p.m. until time of service. Interment will be at Faith UCC Cemetery.

Vietnam veteran Jerold Donath of Kewaskum on June Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran Jerold Donath, 72, of Kewaskum, is heading to Washington D.C. on the June 1 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Donath was born in 1947 to Orin, a meat cutter, and Mildred, a stay-at-home-mother. He was raised around the Kewaskum and West Bend area, graduating from high school in 1965.

He worked at Gehl until he decided to enlist into the Navy in 1966. “I don’t know why I chose the Navy,” Donath said. “At that time, you either enlisted or you were drafted.”

Donath was sent to Basic Training in Great Lakes, Illinois shortly after enlisting. “It was in the middle of winter and it was very limited to what we could do outside. There was a lot of indoor classwork. After Basic, I was in Reserves for a year. We had weekly meetings and more classes…  just general studies.”

In 1967, Donath went into active duty. “I was home ported in San Diego and left for Vietnam on the USS Colonial on November 1967.

Donath was a machinist on the USS Colonial. “It was just day-by-day. We traveled up and down the coast, starting in Saigon,” he said.

On December 1968, Donath’s service ended, coming home as an E4, “When I came home, I went back to work at Gehl and then worked for the 7up bottling company for 30 years before retiring in 2013,” he said.

Donath and his wife, Lauren, have been married 52 years and have three children and four grandchildren, the youngest being 10 years old.

While Donath did have friends, who shared their memorable experiences on past Honor Flights, it was his son, Jon, who asked if Donath wanted to sign up. Jon, who works for Gordon Food Services, will be his father’s guardian on the flight.

After the Honor Flight is over, Donath plans on doing yard work this summer and maybe a road trip with his wife.

Homer Justman of the Town of Trenton has died

It’s with a heavy heart to report the passing of Homer Justman, 74, of the Town of Trenton. According to his wife Barb, Homer died Monday afternoon, May 27, around 3:30 p.m.

Bob Bonenfant, former morning guy with WBKV AM 1470, remembered Homer for his music and kindness.

“I never saw Homer without a smile on his face,” said Bonenfant.  “He truly enjoyed life…whether it be working, playing drums in various bands (particularly Revival) or socializing with others when he and Barb came along on our gambling bus. I never heard him utter a bad word about another person. He will be missed.”

Many people remember Homer as the guy who bagged their groceries. He worked at several stores including the former Reuben’s Market in Hartford or most recently at Piggly Wiggly in Slinger.

Homer even had a little grocery in his basement. It was the most well-organized food pantry. He kept it stocked with canned goods and items from his garden and every spring he loved moving Barb’s 100-pound cactus up the stairs to the back porch as it wintered in the basement.

Homer and Barb were high school sweethearts. They were frequently seen at Kiwanis Steak Fries, chili cook offs, and even the recent Breakfast with the Easter Bunny.

Jeff Szukalski from Jeff’s Spirits on Main said Homer knew his diagnosis wasn’t good, but he didn’t let that get him down.

“He was always in a good mood,” said Szukalski. “I saw him about a month ago and he was still upbeat even though he looked tired. He was always a positive influence on everybody. Sorry to hear he passed.”

Homer was the leader of the local band ‘Revival.’ He could be seen behind the drum set at local taverns and events including the Washington County Fair.

“He was such a good people person and a great musician and really enjoyed himself,” said Joan Stoffel of Campbellsport.  “I know my sister Diane and I would go with Barb and Ross Bradt, about 39 years ago, and we’d go listen to the band and the band wives would hang out and we’d polka and they were a good band and Homer was a good guy.

West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow recalled Homer was always smiling. “He always was in a good mood,” said Sadownikow. “I smile when I think about him.”

In addition to his parents, Homer was preceded in death by eight brothers, Harry, Harvey, Hillary, Hilbert, Henry, Herbert Jr., Herman, and Howard Justman; three brothers-in-law, Harold Westerman, Harry Beall, and Richard Ehnert.

A funeral service for Homer was held Thursday, May 30, in Kewaskum.  Church services were Friday in New Fane.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Sherry Lutz remembered with Exceptional Service Award

St. Frances Cabrini recently held its academic awards ceremony and a presentation was made for the Exceptional Service Award. This year, it was presented posthumously to Sherry Lutz.

The Exceptional Service Award was created several years ago in honor of Shirley Weasler.

Shirley was a devoted mother and loving wife. She had six children who all attended school at St. Frances Cabrini. She was described by a close friend as “an angel on earth.” She was very humble and was always willing to do anything to help someone in need.

She was never judgmental, full of wisdom and grace. Shirley was truly an inspiration to anyone that knew her.

Unfortunately, Shirley unexpectedly passed away when her youngest daughter was still a student at SFC. In order to help honor her wonderful spirit and true dedication to helping others the Exceptional Service Award was created.

The person we honor today was very much like Shirley.

Sherry Lutz was always around, whether that meant coaching, running the lunch program, assisting teachers, or organizing the Christmas cookie exchange for the teachers, a tradition we carry on today in her memory. She was a loving mother and wife and she is greatly missed by family, friends and the St. Frances Cabrini community.

This morning we had a small dedication service of our Multi-Purpose room to Sherry. It was a wonderful celebration of her with the family. A plaque has been made and will be placed on the wall right by the serving area of the kitchen. A sign has been created and will hang above the serving area and will say “Sherry’s Place’ to recognize all the time she devoted to this school.

Cabrini Alumni of the Year Award winners

Students, parents, teachers and alumni gathered in the gym at St. Francis Cabrini School on Friday as academic award winners were announced. Many students were recognized for their achievements in math, robotics, penmanship and art.

There were also alumni awards presented to Mary Hafeman and Tony Koebel.

The SFC Alumni of the Year Award is an honor bestowed annually on two alumni, a male and female, who are wonderful role models for our students. These individuals have brought credit to themselves and to Cabrini through their service and accomplishments in one or more of the following area: Business or professional life, community affairs at the local, state or national level and support of and commitment to Saint Frances Cabrini Parish and School.

This award was presented for the first time at the 60th anniversary reunion and celebration to Cathy (Johnson) Spies, Class of ’71 and David Wiesner (’81). An Alumni Wall of Fame is being created near the gym, where their pictures will be displayed.

“This is a very special award for me,” said Hafeman. “I have very many special memories from St. Frances Cabrini School and along with my parent’s support, we developed a solid Christian foundation that helped us throughout our lives.  In addition, all the friendships we made continue to this day!”

Hafeman grew up next door to Cathy Spies on Orchard Street. “It’s great to follow her,” said Hafeman. “We had so much fun and competition growing up as next-door neighbors; it was a special neighborhood.  Also, our parents were founding members of Cabrini school too.”

Mary Hafeman is a professional golfer and professional golf coach. She is a long-time member of the LPGA, and she was one of the first women admitted to the PGA. In fact, she has always been a trailblazer for the sport. Shew as the first girl to win the WIAA State title in golf. She was named East’s top athlete in 1974 and is credited for her integral role in establishing the sport of girls’ golf at West Bend East.

Mary has received many honors and awards, and she is a member of the West Bend East Sports Hall of Fame, the University of Florida Athletic hall of Fame, and the Wisconsin Golf Hall of Fame.

She has won titles as a golfer, including the Women’s Eastern Amateur Champion, the Women’s Western Amateur Champion, and she played on the Curtis Cup team.

She is owner of Mary Hafeman Golf Experience, an internationally known golf academy, and she has been recognized and honored many times as a golf coach and teachers. She has the attitude that anyone can golf, and she enjoys teaching golfers of all ages and ability levels. Recognizing that many deals and business relationships are made on the golf course, she is especially proactive about teaching women in business to golf.

In 2016 she received the PGA’s National Player Development Award for her extraordinary and exemplary contribution and achievement in the area of player development. Mary was chosen from a pool of PGA Members: 28,500 mean and 800 women to win the award.

Despite this acclaim she is known for being very down-to-earth and friendly, a regular person. She is the oldest of seven children and has always been deeply committed to her family and faith.

Tony Koebel also was recognized as Alumni of the Year. Koebel is a graduate from 1993 and he was noted as “a man with many talents who is a successful entrepreneur, a skilled carpenter and best known for his generosity and big heart.”

Safe Routes to School program in West Bend

There was an old-school effort that began today to encourage kids to walk to school in West Bend. The Safe Routes to School program is a collaborative effort between Bike Friendly West Bend, Aurora Health Care, the Washington-Ozaukee Health Department, students in Concordia University Wisconsin’s nursing program, St. John’s Lutheran School and Saint Frances Cabrini School.  The fundamental goal of the project is encouraging parents and children to walk or bike to school more often, as a healthy lifestyle initiative.

Crossing guard Cliff Van Beek was working the corner at Seventh Avenue and Hawthorn. He said the crossing guards and respectful drivers make for a safe environment for children to get to school. Organizers say the goal of the program is to expand countywide, school by school, city by city. The next day for the Walking School Buses for St. John’s Lutheran is May 22 and 29.

Another bank closing a branch in West Bend

There seems to be a growing trend in West Bend as another bank is closing a branch office.

A letter dated May 3, 2019 was received by customers today, May 11, notifying them the CHASE branch at 801 W. Washington Street in West Bend would be closing as of August 1, 2019. CHASE also has a branch at 600 W. Paradise Drive.

The interesting thing about the CHASE location on Highway 33 is that it is the branch with the safe deposit boxes. The letter below indicates CHASE will release more details in the next 30 days.

Over the past few months similar changes have occurred across Washington County. In September 2018 National Exchange Bank, 2412 W. Washington Street, in West Bend closed.

In September 2017 in West Bend the Bank Mutual, 1526 S. Main Street, announced it was consolidating with Associated Bank on Paradise Drive. In March 2019 the property sold and will be the new home of Landmark Credit Union.

On a history note: Remember when the factories, West Bend Company, Amity Leather, and Enger Kress, were in West Bend and on Fridays the banks were open late because people lined up to cash/deposit their checks. At noon some tellers even noticed customers had a little beer on their breath after having a 10-cent tapper during lunch.

New principal announced at Holy Angels School in West Bend

Holy Angels School in West Bend is announcing a new principal to succeed Mike Sternig, who is retiring after 45 years at Holy Angels. His service started teaching junior high math and religion, also serving as Youth Minister, before landing his dream job in 1989 when he became principal at Holy Angels School.  A letter from Rev. Patrick Heppe about the new principal at H.A.S. is below

Dear Holy Angels School Family,

It is with great joy that I can announce that the search for the next principal has concluded and I have accepted the recommendation of the Principal Search Ad Hoc Committee. It is my pleasure to announce that Anne Weise has accepted the call to serve as principal of Holy Angels School.

I greatly appreciate the countless hours that the Principal Search Ad Hoc Committee devoted to the task. Beginning in early December, the committee has been part of a journey that resulted in the unanimous choice of Anne Weise to serve as the next principal.

Members of the committee included: Angela Bell, Peter German, Phylis Gibbon, Michele Guminski, Gary Held, Stephanie Rychtik, Michelle Spaeth, Mike Sternig, Sheila Tranel, Rachel Weber, Dave Wietor, and Peter Winkler. It is with special appreciation that I recognize the leadership that Gary Held provided throughout the process.

Here’s a little of Ms. Weise’s background and I’m sure that this community will enjoy meeting and supporting her as she leads our school…

She was born and raised in Peshtigo, Wisconsin. Ms. Weise moved to Tucson, AZ when she started high school. When injuries sidelined her in her career as a tennis pro, she attended the University of Phoenix and received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. She went on to attain her MBA as well as a Master’s in Education.

Anne has been devoted to teaching since 2005. She started her teaching career while living in Tucson, AZ. She taught K5 through 3rd grade at Tucson Country Day School. She also became Assistant Principal the last two years at the school.

Anne moved back to Wisconsin in 2010. While working on her Wisconsin teaching certificate, she worked at The Boys & Girls Club of Oshkosh where she was the Childcare Director. In 2012, she moved to the Milwaukee Metro. In April of 2013, she started at the Business and Economics Academy of Milwaukee (BEAM) as a teacher. After teaching 4th grade for a year, she was promoted to the Business and Economics Curriculum Coordinator as well as the Math Curriculum Coordinator. She worked at BEAM until the school closed in 2017. At that time, she transitioned into the Milwaukee Archdiocese’s Seton Catholic Schools Network. Anne has been teaching and serving as a site administrator on duty at St. Martin of Tours Catholic School in Franklin.

She comes to Holy Angels with a strong sense of the culture of our school and a desire to bring Holy Angels to even greater achievements.    In His Peace,  Rev. Patrick E. Heppe

Spaulding Clinical awarded sunscreen research contract from US FDA

Spaulding Clinical Research, the contract research organization tapped by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to conduct a study on the absorption of active ingredients in sunscreen into the bloodstream, announced it is now available to design and execute Maximum Usage Trials (MUsTs) for sunscreen and sunscreen-containing products.

The company, which has conducted numerous MUsTs for the pharmaceutical industry, collaborated with the FDA on the design and execution of the sunscreen trial that helped confirm the long-held suspicion about absorption. It has set up a website,, to provide an overview of the trial, access to the report published in the May 6 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), as well as details on its innovative, industry-leading research services and contact information for companies interested in testing their products.

The City of West Bend to be featured on Discover Wisconsin

The film crew, including show co-host Mariah Haberman, will start filming on Tuesday, May 14.  “Typically, what we do is film one, half-hour show over the next several months,” said Haberman. “The show won’t actually air until Spring 2020.”

Haberman has been with Discover Wisconsin for six seasons. She said the normal format is to produce a show over a one-year time span. “This year we’re doing 25 shows,” she said.

Discover Wisconsin is known as the “longest-running tourism TV show in the country.”

“The idea behind the show is to move the needle in these local economies across Wisconsin,” Haberman said. “The idea for this episode is for people to learn about West Bend and then go online and book a trip and spend money at the local businesses.”

It started in 1987 and is in its 32nd season. “We do a smattering of different things,” said Haberman. “For the West Bend episode, we are going to be at a restaurant to start.”

Discover Wisconsin has filmed episodes in Hartford and neighboring Dodge County. There was one segment on motorcycling the back roads and that ran through the Kettle Moraine in Washington County.

Normally Discover Wisconsin brings a crew of about four people to each video shoot.

“One thing I try to talk to the leaders of tourism about is finding its uniqueness,” said Haberman. “We really work to find what makes them stand out. We try to cover iconic things or hidden gems in the community. We want to surprise our viewers in a positive way.”

Most episodes, according to Haberman, will include six to eight visits from the show.

Discover Wisconsin airs in eight states across the Upper Midwest.  “We reach 11.5 million homes and have a loyal viewership of 600,000,” Haberman said.

On a side note: At 31 years old, Haberman grew up south of Madison. She said the thing she knows about West Bend is it’s a “thriving Milwaukee suburb.”

What would you suggest Haberman focus on during her trip to West Bend.  “It’s going to be exciting for me to see a city like this for the first time,” she said. “I’m prepared to be surprised.”

Shopko Optical has found a new home in West Bend

It was January 2019 when neighbors in West Bend learned about the fate of Shopko. The retail chain filed bankruptcy, however Shopko noted “All Optical locations below will remain open to serve you during store closing. Your Optical center will be relocated very soon to a new location with the same patient care you have come to expect from your Shopko Optical center.”

A freestanding Shopko Optical will open in the coming months in the strip center to the south of Pick ‘n Save, just to the south of SportClips in the 1700 block of S. Main Street.

More details were posted in a press release from Shopko: In order to position the Company for future success, Shopko has announced it will be closing an additional 38 stores, relocating over 20 Optical centers to freestanding locations, and conducting an auction process for its pharmacy business. Throughout this process, all Shopko Optical centers and pharmacies remain open and continue to deliver the high-quality products and services to which its customers are accustomed. All other stores remain open as the Company continues to optimize its store footprint.

Additionally, encouraged by the performance of the four freestanding Optical centers that were opened in 2018, Shopko plans to continue to grow its optical business by opening additional freestanding Optical locations during 2019.

Academic awards at Kettle Moraine Lutheran H.S. in Jackson     By Megan Himm

As the 2018-2019 school year comes to a close, Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School (KML) in Jackson is taking time to recognize the many talented students who walk the halls and fill the classrooms.

Recognition week has a strong focus on the senior class, as well as any others who greatly excel. Each day after chapel, from May 13 through May 17, KML will focus on one academic and athletic aspect and recognize those who have made great contributions.

The class of 2019-Valedictorian, Salutatorian, Academic Leader Awards, Honors and High Honors students were all announced and brought up on stage. Students were given certificates for honor roll, and medals for valedictorians and the salutatorian.

Valedictorians: Amy Deibert, Ariana Miller, Katharine Molkentin, Erica Zeamer

Salutatorian: Joshua Hennen

Academic Leader Awards: Amy Deibert, Ariana Miller, Katharine Molkentin, Erica Zeamer, Joshua Hennen, Molly Krajcik, Jayden Koehler, Rebecca Loescher, Kiley Huckstorf, Mitchell Boline

High Honors (3.6 – 4.0): Amy Deibert, Ariana Miller, Katharine Molkentin, Erica Zeamer, Joshua Hennen, Molly Krajcik, Jayden Koehler, Rebecca Loescher, Kiley Huckstorf, Mitchell Boline, Jayme Soderbeck, Jake Stiemke, Abigail Washburn, Emma Herriges, Amber Heider, Jamie Maas, Megan Sina, Rebecca Vandermus, Carissa Egelseer, Yao Cheng, Elizabeth Bieberitz, Kaitlyn Scherf, Logan Mueller, Andrea Busalacchi, Miriam Helwig, Olivia Schaewe, Benjamin Adams, Melinda Weber, Veronica Fellenz, Maria Zimmerman, Cooper Knoll, Keyi Zou, Daniel Cain, Megan Parbs, Ryan Mantz, Evan Theis, Grace Loeffler, Jared Metz, Amelia Bock Jenna Jahnke, Elaina Guse

Honors (3.3-3.59): Jacob Byhardt, Yue You, Elijah Natzke Isabella Erdman, Courtney Gerboth, Caleb Martens, Ryan Theis, Madison Aubry, Jacob Schmandt, Clara Kugler, Justin Ninmann, Benjamin Washburn, Benjamin Polheber Preston Barrett, Jiahui Jin, Ashlyn Bartz, Amanda Nank

Dr. Mary Lewis honored with St. Joseph’s Hospital’s Excellence in Medicine Award | By Tim Olsen

Dr. Mary Lewis, Emergency Department medical director at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin St. Joseph’s Hospital, has been honored with the sixth annual Excellence in Medicine Award from St. Joseph’s Hospital.

Dr. Lewis was selected for her leadership; excellence in medical care; teaching and mentoring; collaboration; boards, committees and organizations she has served; community involvement; and overall legacy she has established at St. Joseph’s Hospital.

“Dr. Lewis was one of the first women in the state of Wisconsin to become a director of an emergency department and she has proudly and capably held that position for 27+ years,” said her nominator, Joseph Schwartz, MD, emergency medicine physician at St. Joseph’s Hospital.

“In the past 27 years, Dr. Lewis has been a steady constant, demonstrating excellence in medical care and excellence in leadership as this hospital progressed from an independent hospital to becoming part of Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin network. I first met Dr. Lewis in 1988 when I was a medical student in Milwaukee and she was a resident on the trauma surgery service. Even at that early time, she demonstrated superior leadership skills and was quick to assist those around her with a true team spirit.”

Updates & tidbits

– Welcome Judge Christine Ohlis to Mid-Moraine. This month representatives for the Mid-Moraine Municipal Court system selected Attorney Christine Ohlis of West Bend to serve as the new judge. Ohlis will serve as judge replacing Steve Cain who was elected to the seat in April,

– The Knights of Columbus are sponsoring Dad’s Day 2019.  The event is June 15 at St. Mary’s Parish in Barton.  There will be inflatable activities, including a Bounce House with slide, food and games including a Wiffle Ball tournament. There is a $10 registration fee that will include a T-shirt, all the food- (hot dogs, hamburger, chips, and drink), and access to all the games and activities. Dad’s Day will run from noon – 4 p.m. with a Mass at 4 p.m.

– Mai Fest is coming to Friedenfeld Park in Germantown on May 17, 18 and 19. There will be fantastic beers, fabulous music and dancing and good old-fashioned fun.

After clinching the 2019 Wisconsin Collegiate Conference state championship in tennis, coaches Roger Peterson and Debbie Butschlick from UWM at Washington County were honored with the conference Coach of the Year award. This is the fourth such award for Peterson and fifth for Butschlick. The pair have coached the men’s and women’s tennis teams at the UWM at Washington County campus since 1992. This was the second consecutive year the tennis team took home the top state award.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

New restaurant opening in Germantown

There’s a new independent restaurant opening in Germantown in the next couple of months. It’s an old-school location with a unique twist and a recognizable owner.

Jodi Janisse-Kanzenbach is the genius behind a new eatery called The Precinct. It will be in the old Germantown Police Station on Church Street, just around the corner from Barley Pop Pub, N116 W16137 Main Street.

The old PD is being transformed with a 1940’s bar from a tavern up north, a wall of graffiti, an open-concept kitchen, garage doors for European flare and a menu that stays true to the farming heritage of Germantown.

“The plan has been in the process for nearly two year,” said Janisse-Kanzenbach. “It really came to fruition last year when we bought into the Barley Pop and it’s been under lock and key since.”

There were several goals Janisse-Kanzenbach listed as she detailed the closing Café Soeurette in downtown West Bend and opening a new venture.

“This was part of the plan to get our own building, being able to build a concept we wanted and getting out from underground,” she said. “Within the next two to three months Café Soeurette will close and shortly thereafter The Precinct will open.”

The Precinct has amenities attractive to Janisse-Kanzenbach. “We actually have a parking lot, we’re ADA accessible, we were able to design the whole building taking it down to the studs and building it back exactly how we wanted.”

Like Café Soeurette, Janisse-Kanzenbach is working toward an open-kitchen concept. “We always had such a personal relationship with our customers at the Café and we wanted to carry that on,” she said. “I liked talking to the customers and with the window in the kitchen at Café Soeurette people could see who was cooking and they’d know where their food was coming from and that is important to me.”

As far as the location, Janisse-Kanzenbach said she did her homework. “When I opened Café I was young, 28 years old, and I hopped on the first thing that became available. This time I wanted to do my research with demographics and make sure it made even more sense,” she said.

“I wanted to find an area that made sense and my business partner Deb Reinbold owned this building and it was the last one I looked at and it really made sense. At first I looked at it and there were 15 rooms and I didn’t see it at all and then my husband Cory went through, he’s normally the pessimist, and he said I had to just look at it as an open shell; I was shocked he was on board with it. Then it became this transition of buying into the Barley Pop and these properties. I’ve joked with customers it’s kind of the next step of me growing up as an adult. I feel a little adult these days,” she said.

The location across the street from Janisse-Kanzenbach’s other venture, Barley Pop Pub, make sense to her… even if it’s not clear to others.

“It’s two completely different concepts,” she said.

Barley Pop Pub has more of a sports bar atmosphere. “I think people will embrace The Precinct,” said Janisse-Kanzenbach. “It’ll be similar to what we do at Café with supporting local farmers. We’re still working on the menu, but it’ll change quarterly, and we’ll do lunch on Friday and Saturday, and we’ll add a one-a-month brunch with an a ’la carte eggs benedict and bloody Mary’s.  It’s very different than what’s happening at the Barley Pop.”

Staff is completely behind the idea. “I have staff that’s been behind me for so long,” she said. “I’ve been honest from the start, but they’ll be happy they can finally let the cat out of the bag.”

Aside from the open-kitchen concept and garage doors for added light, Janisse-Kanzenbach will bring in an old-school bar that her husband found on Craig’s List.

“We’ve had the bar over a year and a half. It’s an 18-foot back bar, front bar with an art-deco look and it was in amazing shape and we drove up near Marinette and hauled this bar back to West Bend and it’s interesting,” she said.

There was a treasure within the treasure as Janisse-Kanzenbach found something behind the mirror. “We took one of the mirrors off and there was a post office box number and combination probably from one of the owners,” she said. “I’m going to frame it and put it on the wall.”

Below is the official announcement made by Jodi Janisse-Kanzenbach

This morning I woke up to a picture of a new baby that was born from a friend and past employee. It put the biggest smile on my face.

Let’s reminisce, this individual somehow found out nearly 12 years ago before it was public that I was going to be opening Café Soeurette and told me he would keep my secret as long as I made one promise that I let him be part of helping get me up and going! I was shocked and happily obliged.

Over the years he came and went as an employee but always one of my biggest cheerleaders for the café, it’s crew, west bend and myself. He even asked me to assist in proposing to a lovely lady (also a long-time customer) at café and I was honored to help and witness it! Then came their rehearsal dinner about a year later also, at café.

About a week ago they stopped into Café and I gave them a gift for the little one they were now expecting. We chatted for some time, catching up, talking about their bundle of joy to arrive. What an exciting time! Over the years it has been an honor for all of us here at the café to share in so many memorable events in people’s lives.

The conversation then turned to Café hosting some music for a local event this summer and I had to decline. I was sad but also happy to let this couple know what was in store for my family, staff, and my partners future!

Birth of a new baby brings so much joy and excitement but if you are a parent you know it also comes along with fear and question if you are doing the right thing daily. I have had all these emotions for quite some time now, but mostly joy and excitement! My staff, partners and I are excited to finally make this amazing news public.

We are in the process of remodeling a building for a new concept restaurant. We own the building and have gotten to design every single aspect to our own specifications, well besides the brick wall we ran into, literally, but hey when life throws you lemons make lemonade right!

I know you all reading this right now are probably like, What? She has Café and Barley Pop and now a new restaurant is under construction is she crazy? Guess I am a little bit crazy! But mostly crazy excited!  Today I announce the Birth of Precinct, Tap & Table!

Doris Romaine Yach of West Bend celebrates 100 years

Doris Romaine Yach of Cedar Ridge is celebrating her 100th birthday on May 9. Sharp, humble, and easy with conversation, Yach said she’s “taking it one day at a time.”

“It creeps up on you,” she said about her age.  “I didn’t do anything special. When the doctor says, ‘How are you?’ I say the bottom half needs a little help, but the top half is doing OK.”

Born in Campbellsport in 1919 to Edgar and Hedwig Romaine, Yach grew up on a farm, the oldest of three children. She went to a small schoolhouse, spent a year at UW Madison and then on to UW-Whitewater where she met her husband in journalism class.

She married Harry J. Yach on July 3, 1943 when she was 24 years old. The couple had six children and Yach said she was “the traditional housewife.”

“There wasn’t a ‘me’ for many years… it was always the kids first,” said Yach. “I tell them today I missed doing a lot of things I should have been doing but I was the typical housewife and the kids came first.”

Kids came home every day for lunch said Yach.  All six kids went to Catholic grade school and high school and some college with her support even though she was not raised in the Roman Catholic religion but converted later.

“We always knew she would help but she also taught us how to be self-sufficient and rely on ourselves to deal with problems,” said son David Yach.

“My West Bend grandfather, Henry Opgenorth, was one of the four men who started the insurance company in 1894 when they had the big fire down in the business section. My grandfather said we’re not going to pay the premiums to the big-city people, we’re going to start our own insurance company,” she said.

Below is an article from the Ziegler Company web page citing an early start to a business with Ben Ziegler.

The Ziegler Companies, Inc. provides a complete range of investment services and is widely regarded as the largest institutional bond underwriter in the United States, not to mention the largest investment banking firm for healthcare finance outside Wall Street.

In 1902, West Bend, Wisconsin, was a small bustling mill town famous for the hotels it had built to put up travelers making the two-day trip between Milwaukee and Fond du Lac. The son of a hotelier and county treasurer, 18-year-old Ben Ziegler had been selling fire insurance policies to area farmers and merchants to supplement his income as an assistant for the county’s treasurer and register of deeds. In 1902 an insurance agency owned by a friend of Ziegler’s father ran into financial trouble; as the agency’s co-signer, Ziegler’s father assumed its debt and the responsibility for finding a new agent for the business. Despite Ben’s young age, Ziegler’s father made Ben that new agent, and the young entrepreneur promptly began selling insurance policies to area businesses out of a room in his father’s hotel. By 1905 Ben had saved up $6,500, which he used to pay off his father’s farm and saloon, and a home for him two years later. By 1906 Ziegler and his former employer in the insurance business, Henry Opgenorth, formed a new agency, Opgenorth and Ziegler, which fell apart only 18 months later after disagreements over the business. Opgenorth and Ziegler split the territories and went their separate ways.

Yach’s grandfather died in 1925.

Yach was the oldest of three children. Both her brother and sister have passed. Yach’s daughter-in-law, Nancy, said “Yach was strict but loving. Her kids could come to her with anything,” she said.

About 80 people visited for Yach’s 100th birthday party including children, grandchildren, relatives and friends from California, Washington, Phoenix, Colorado, Massachusetts, Arizona, Illinois, and Minnesota.

I keep busy and knitted 25 dish clothes for the craft room at Cedar Ridge.

“I’m proud of my family as a unit,” said Yach. “They’ve all worked hard, and they will come to me and say ‘My work ethic… I got from you.’ They’re all good kids.”

“Through the years the friendships are important,” said Yach.

Yach has six children, 15 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.  “Doris still sends birthday cards to all the children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and other friends and relatives,” said David A. Yach.  “Doris instilled in me the importance of reading and learning something new every day. Being the teacher, she was we had no choice.”

David Yach said his mother is “dependable, resilient and caring.”

“As my mother has aged, she has been an inspiration to me by never complaining and always dealing with age-related problems with a smile on her face,” said David Yach.

New Verizon store, Pet Supply store and addition to First Baptist Church

The Plan Commission meeting in West Bend this week tackled 106 pages of proposed development. One of the items up is construction of a new Verizon store on W. Washington Street across from Sendik’s.

Plans from MSI General call for two buildings. The first site plan is for a 3,000-square-foot commercial building, located approximately 300’ west of 18th Avenue on the south side of W. Washington Street. The development also has a second commercial building pad proposed to the west. The details for the second building have not been determined and a separate site plan approval will be needed when that development has been determined.

The building location is directly north of Sendik’s and to the west of First Bank and Starbucks.

Neighbors will remember that location was going to be home to Pizza Ranch. It was actually the second proposed location after Steve Kearns bought the original site just to the west of Westbury Bank.

ARCHIVE April 10, 2017 – The first location was on W. Washington Street just to the west of Westbury Bank. On August 15, 2016 PRWB Real Estate LLC closed on the purchase of 1.7 acres on W. Washington Street for $300,000. Then, within a couple weeks, PRWB Real Estate LLC flipped the property and sold the parcel for $500,000 to Steve Kearns.

Some of the details the Plan Commission will be reviewing include:

· A driveway connection to W. Washington Street is proposed.

· An internal driveway connection is proposed at the southwest corner of the site to provide a second access through the Sendik’s development.

· A traffic impact analysis was originally completed when the Pizza Ranch development was considering the site. An updated analysis is needed to verify that the new specific commercial uses don’t require off-site improvements for W. Washington Street or N. 18th Avenue.

· 19 standard parking and 1 barrier free parking stalls are provided for this phase of the development. Additional parking will be constructed with the next phase.

A couple other items on the agenda include a 1,872-square-foot addition to Affiliated Clinical Services on E. Washington Street, a 7,000-square-foot addition to First Baptist Church on S. Main Street, and development of a new Pet Supply store on S. Main Street in the former location of Grimm’s Dollar Express.

Hotel and office building to be developed on former Gehl lot in downtown West Bend

The City of West Bend has entered into an agreement with RafRad LLC and Kinseth Hospitality with the intention of constructing a hotel and office building in the downtown on a portion of the 8-acre site formerly home to Gehl on the southwest corner of Water Street and Forest Avenue.

In partnership with the Washington County Site Redevelopment Committee (SRC), the City of West Bend completed a hotel study specifically dedicated to the former Gehl site. City staff approached SRC and identified the site as a high-priority redevelopment site.

Paul Stangl, of RafRad LLC, has been a driving force behind bringing a hotel to our downtown. Along with Kinseth Hospitality, Stangl has a history of successful hotel development. Many residents may be familiar with their developments and most specifically with their development of the Hampton Inn and Suites located in the City of West Bend.

 “We feel this project will not only fill a need in the downtown area but will further draw visitors and the community to the area,” said Stangl.

“We have many great initiatives happening in our downtown,” said City Administrator Jay Shambeau.  “Combine those with the positive citywide business and residential energy, there is no question this makes a lot of sense.”

With the east side of the Riverwalk near completion along with multiple nearby developments, the City of West Bend believes the downtown will continue to be a desirable destination to live, work and play.

Korean War veteran Delbert Clay of Hartford on May Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali

Korean War veteran Delbert Clay, 87, of Hartford, is heading to Washington D.C. on the May 11 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Born in 1931 in Missouri to Mary and Grover, Clay’s family moved to Milwaukee when he was 11 years old, where he lived his entire life, until moving to Hartford three years ago. He attended Riverside High School and graduated in 1949.

At 21 years old, Clay received a note from Uncle Sam.  “I was drafted in 1952. It’s a comedian who said, ‘I fought like hell and had to go anyway. You can’t fight the government, you just have to pick up and go,” he said.

Basic Training was in California and while the food was fine, Clay shared a little of what he endured. “It was just a lot of harassment, anything they could do to irritate you,” he said.

After basic training ended, Clay had a 10-day delay-in-route, so he flew home and got married to his high school sweetheart, Audrey. “After that, I went to San Francisco and got shipped out to Korea,” he said.

Clay was assigned to the 23rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Division. “We were on the line wherever we went and when the war ended, I was back at NCO working with officers and training the guys that would come in.”

Clay was a corporal when his service ended in 1954. “I got wounded and received a Purple Heart. I also got a Combat Infantry Badge and things like that, but those don’t matter much.”

When Clay came home, he continued working for Cleaver-Brooks. “I just couldn’t sit still anymore so I went to work for an insurance company,” he said.

After retirement, woodworking and golf became Clay’s main hobbies. “It used to be bowling, but I can’t bowl anymore. I learned woodworking by just fiddling around. I had a brother in law that could build anything, so he taught me a lot,” he said.

While Clay’s wife, Audrey, passed away in 2016, he reminisced about their early years. “We went out for a blind date when I was 16 and she was 14. We were attached to the hip for 68 years,” he said.

Clay and his wife had three boys, Daniel, Dennis, and Dean, “My son signed me up for the Honor Flight, but I wasn’t really happy with it at the time. There was a reason for that though. I didn’t want to pick one son over the other (Daniel passed in 2013). My other son, Dean, ended up passing away just a few months ago.

Clay is looking forward to the Honor Flight. “Just to see all the memorials again, the plane camaraderie, and the mail call,” he said.

Clay is looking forward to seeing the Korean Memorial but said he’s impressed by a number of them. “The Vietnam Memorial is sad,” he said. “You see a lot of people are crying and sobbing.  Korea wasn’t fun but Vietnam was bad. Those guys came home and were treated like dirt.”

Vietnam War veteran Dale Mueller of Hartford on May Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran Dale Mueller, 71, of Hartford, is heading to Washington D.C. on the May 11 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Mueller was born in 1948 in Arlington, Minnesota to farmers Harry and Luella. Mueller graduated from Arlington-Green Isle High School in 1966 and got accepted into St. Cloud State University in St. Cloud Minnesota, “I was in St. Cloud for one year, I was looking to become a teacher. I was short on money and was going to skip a year, but the military came around, so I enlisted. I picked the Army because I didn’t want to go for four years and the Army was the only branch at the time that offered a 3-year enlistment,” Mueller said.

Mueller completed Basic Training in Fort Campbell, Kentucky in 1968. “Being from a small town, it was quite an experience, hard, eye-opening, and scary too,” he said. “I got to meet people from all over the country. After that, I went to schooling for transportation for six weeks and then I got my orders for Vietnam.”

Mueller shipped out in the spring of 1969, assigned to Cam Ranh Bay. “I was very lucky,” Mueller said. “My job was to process all the troops coming in and leaving. I’d work with the Air Force in scheduling flights and getting assignments for people. Two weeks after my arrival, we took on incoming rockets, I was so scared I ran out of the barracks. I ran through the barracks screen door, tore the door off its hinges, trying to get the bunker. Everybody was laughing at that. I was so scared, the first couple times, I slept in a flight jacket and helmet.

Mueller shared that while serving was a serious matter, his unit tried to keep things fun and lighthearted at times, often pulling practical jokes on others. “After people landed, we’d put them on buses to be shipped out. We’d tell them that if you hear a loud boom or rocket, the bus would stop, and they’d have to get out and lay in the ditch. So, the bus driver would start driving up the hill and when he’d drive down, he’d make the bus backfire. He’d slam on the brakes and everyone would hop out and lay in the sand and I would say, ‘Welcome to South Vietnam.’”

Mueller’s service ended in the summer of 1971. “I got home and had a good, cold Midwest beer and spent time with my family, went fishing, just getting used to life in the States,” he said.

He met his wife, Sue, in 1972 and married her in 1973, Mueller recalled when they first met. “She was teaching and coaching basketball. I was a basketball official and things sort of took off from there.”

For a few years after his service, Mueller worked in construction before moving to Hartford because his wife got a teaching job at Peace Lutheran. “Then I worked in retail sales and helped start an organization called Builders for Christ,” Mueller said. “I did that until I retired in 2014.”

Mueller and his wife have two daughters that they are extremely proud of, Sarah, who works at Walmart, and Emily, who is an athletic trainer at Kewaskum High School. While he doesn’t have any grandchildren, Mueller has a wonderful grand-dog named Nico. In his spare time, Mueller enjoys hunting, reading, and old classic cars. This summer, he and his wife plan on just enjoying life and taking care of their grand-dog Nico.

Mueller signed himself up for the Honor Flight, without any inclination he’d be chosen. Aside from meeting other people and reminiscing, he’s looking forward to honoring the 58,000 servicemen and women that didn’t come home.

UWM at Washington Co. Teams capture WCC State Tennis Title | By Deb Butschlick

For the second year in a row the men’s and women’s tennis teams captured the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference State Tennis Tournament in Madison at the Neilsen Tennis Stadium.

Players from both teams were able to advance to the finals round in both singles and doubles.  The men scored 18 out of a possible 22 points and the women scored 12 out of 15 possible points. Coach Debbie Butschlick, Paige Airaudi (#2 Doubles Champ) Ariahna Grossenbacher (#1 Singles Runner Up), Sammie Brown (#3 Singles Champ), Meghan MacFarlane (#2 Singles Runner up), Caryn Hamm (#4 Singles Champ), Kayla Boehm (#2 Doubles Champ) Coach Roger Peterson, Daniel Britton (#6 Singles Runner up), David Britton (#5 Singles Champ), Matthew Melsheimer (#1 Singles & #1 Doubles Champ), Brody Jossart (#4 Singles Runner up & #2 Doubles champs) Nathan Melsheimer (#2 Singles Runner up & #1 Doubles Chaps), Seth Wordell (#3 Singles Champs & #2 Doubles Champ)

Pick Award winners at UWM at Washington County

Student athletes from UWM at Washington County were recognized Tuesday evening during the annual Athletic Awards Banquet. A couple of the major award winners included:

Scholar Athlete – Meghan MacFarlane

In 1968 the WCC initiated the Scholar Athlete Award. Each campus would have one scholar athlete award. Scholar athlete is determined by the athletic board. Most important is academics, followed by athletics and finally campus and community involvement.

Pick Female Athlete – Meghan MacFarlane     Pick Male Athlete – Brody Jossart

Former athletic director Tom Brigham said MacFarlane qualifies as a good example of a scholar athlete.

“The three criteria she showed was excellence in academics, excellence in athletics and campus and community involvement,” said Brigham. “She is a fine young lady and the parents did a wonderful job as all the parents have done here.”

MacFarlane was a standout athlete in volleyball, basketball and tennis. MacFarlane is studying nursing and she will continue her education at UW-Milwaukee.

Coach and athletic director Deb Butschlick said MacFarlane leads by example and she has her priorities straight as a student athlete.

“She puts academics first,” said Butschlick. “She is far above a normal player. She can pick up any sport; she never played tennis before, but she can excel in any sport.”

Brody Jossart was 2nd team all-conference in soccer, soccer captain of the year, and men’s tennis he received the coaches award.

“Brody led by example and was always a pleasure to coach,” said Mitchell Bury. “Brody is a dedicated student athlete and he’s been selected WCC all conference for two years in a row,” said Butschlick.

The Pick Family is the proud sponsor of the Female and Male Athlete of the Year awards. This year marks the 32nd anniversary of this award, which was started in 1988 and given annually to the outstanding female and male athletes at UWM-Washington County.

Updates & tidbits

– The Kettle Moraine Symphonic Band will hold a free spring concert on Sunday, May 12 at UWM-Washington County Theatre on the Hill. The concert starts at 3 p.m.

 – New signs are being installed today, Friday, May 3 at Cafe Floriana, 611 Veterans Avenue, Suite 104. The locally owned coffee shop and bakery opened in March 2019. The shop is located on the first floor of Cast Iron Luxury Living which is formerly home to the West Bend Company.

 – It took less than three minutes and the West Bend School Board voted its officers into place for 2019-2020. School board president Joel Ongert retains his seat as president, Nancy Justman was selected vice president, Tonnie Schmidt was selected clerk, and Chris Zwygart was selected treasurer. All nominations were unanimous.

– On Tuesday, May 7, representatives from Kwik Trip appeared before the West Bend Plan Commission with a request to build a larger-than-normal sign at the corner of Paradise Drive and River Road.  A new Kwik Trip is being developed where the old Egbert & Guido’s Express / Citgo used to be. Kwik Trip said it would like to exceed the city standard of 16 square feet and instead place a 21.59 square foot electronic message sign on the corner. Neighbors have been notified and so far, nobody’s complained.

– Holy Angels Students of the Month for April 2019 include Georgia Haddorff, Hailey Kiefer, and Nora Walter.

– It looks like former Green Bay Packer Donald Driver will be paying a visit to students in West Bend. The all-time leading wide receiver for the green and gold is working in cooperation with Goodwill on an annual Pack’er Up Donation Challenge. This year’s event encouraged families to: Clean out your closets and donate any participating Goodwill Store & Donation Center.

Holy Angels principal Mike Sternig confirmed Driver will be coming to school later this month. The students are excited, and it’s been said “it’s the worst kept secret in West Bend.”

Donald Driver is a spokesman for Goodwill. During past school visits in Wisconsin the Packer Hall of Famer reads to students from one of the three children’s books he’s written. Driver played for the Packers for 14 years and later took home the trophy on Dancing with the Stars. Early word his arrival is expected to be May 20.

– The annual Ride of Silence will be Wednesday, May 15 in the parking lot just south of the Museum of Wisconsin Art. The ride will start at 7 p.m.

What I have learned from my Mother (among other things) | By David Yach

Just ahead of Mother’s Day a special tribute to Mom Doris Yach from her son David about the many things he’s learned from his mother. This week Doris turned 100 years old and May 9, 2019 was proclaimed ‘Doris Yach Day’ by the City of West Bend and Washington County.

Son David Yach submitted the article below, “What I have learned from my Mother (among other things)”

I learned many things from my mother –as a young boy, a young man and as a adult with children and grandchildren of my own. Here are just a few of them.

I learned that it puts a smile on a 10-year old boy’s face if you let him ride a horse in Texas. And I sure wish I still had that cool black cowboy hat with the curled-up edges.

I learned that mothers must beam when they see their 7-year old ride in grandpa Edgar’s standard oil fuel truck.

I learned the best way to thaw out frozen hands from playing in the snow with only knitted mittens or cotton gloves is with cold water run under a faucet.

I learned that you can leave long-lasting handprints and footprints in fresh concrete at 90th and Hadley.

I learned that cub scouts can be a lot of fun if you have a mom who is willing to put up with the chaos of being a den mother and be willing to help you turn an old 78-LP record into a super neat ash tray.

I learned that camping with the ENTIRE family must be the only way to enjoy a vacation…… as long as the tent is insufferably hot, the ham steaks are cooked on an open grill, and the duty roster with everybody’s job is typed and posted to a tent post.

I have learned that mothers had to be the most trusting souls in 1956 through 1958 to let Bob and I take the bus to County Stadium to see the Braves play baseball or to the downtown sports show at the Arena. With an extra nickel for the transfer both ways.

I learned that you have to have shoes that fit really well. Never buy cheap shoes. You ‘ll pay for it sooner rather than later.

I have learned that you can teach your children how to play sheepshead and cribbage but then after that…. they’re on their own. And no matter what your age is, winning never, never, never, gets old.

I learned the beauty of music when she played the piano.

I learned the discipline of thrift as she watched the boys count their 8th grade snow shoveling money and their paper route money and marched them to the savings and loan to deposit it all.

I learned how to “ladder CD’s” at her knee.

I have learned that whenever a house guest departs you send them on their way with a cellophane bag of cookies even when you know the cookies will be devoured before the border.

I learned that it when you are in your 80’s and as long as you are in door county it is perfectly acceptable to eat cherry pie for breakfast.

And as long as you are in Door county, a perfect day is traveling from one winery to another and sampling at each and every stop.

I have learned that no matter how far away your children and grandchildren and great grandchildren are, making things like baby blankets, stocking caps, lacey socks, afghans, Christmas tree skirts and scrubbies show them how much you care for them and love them.

First Corinthians chapter 13

For I have learned the very meaning of Love from my mother.

Love is patient. She has taught us patience. Love is kind. She has showed us kindness.

Love is not rude Love does not seek its own interests. She has always put others first.

Love is not quick tempered. It does not brood over injury

Love does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth.

By her actions, she has showed us how to let our own children grow roots…and wings.

She has showed us…..

Love bears all things. Love believes all things. Love hopes all things. Love endures all things

This is what I have learned from my mother.    By David Yach

First Names Matter


Sixteen members of a family journeyed far for “Lovett or Leave It,” but were shocked to discover that they had signed up to see former President Obama speechwriter Jon Lovett, rather than their beloved Lyle Lovett.

“My sister is a huge Lyle Lovett fan, and we have been trying to get a weekend together with my cousins for a long time,” Belinda Walker of El Paso, Texas, explains to ITK.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Former UW-WC AD Tom Brigham speaks out about elimination of competitive athletics

The Commissioner of Athletics for the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference George J. Hayes has written a statement of support for competitive athletics at UWM at Washington County and Waukesha County.

It was April 12, 2019 when interim dean Stephen Schmid issued a statement announcing conference athletic programs would be cut at the University in Washington County in 2020-2021.

A portion of his announcement is below.

The current competitive conference athletics program will remain the same for next year. Next fall, we will start planning for the shift to club sports and wellness programs in academic year 2020-2021.

The move to sunset competitive conference athletics at the end of the 2019-20 academic year is driven by several factors. Declining enrollments have resulted in declining segregated fee revenues, leaving less funding for non-athletics student life activities and personnel. For this academic year, athletics segregated fee budgets account for approximately 50 percent of all collected segregated fee revenues at Washington County and more than 30 percent at Waukesha. Second, with the end of the UW Colleges, the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference will be unfunded and effectively terminated next year. Continuing support for this conference will incur additional costs to both campuses. Finally, you may know that our coaches have often struggled in many sports to recruit enough students to form a team. On average over the past three years, Washington County has had 60 student athletes per year, and Waukesha 68, with some sports not running this past year due to lack of interest.

Recognizing decreased revenues from segregated fees, the student governance associations at both Washington County and Waukesha voted to cut funding for athletics in 2019-20 to help address a $110,000 shortfall in student segregated fees for the two campuses. Next year, we will work with the student governance associations to create a 2020-21 plan for club sports and wellness programs that we hope will result in a healthier student population.

Following the announcement, the student council at UWM at Washington County held a meeting where students, faculty and alumni spoke out about the decision, the lack of transparency, and inaccuracy of some of the details in Schmid’s statement.  Schmid attended the meeting.

Former UWM at Washington County Athletic Director Tom Brigham spoke passionately about starting the athletic program at the local university in 1968.

“Nobody even approached me for a conference, even out of decency to ask about what my thoughts were about it,” he said.

“I think this process has gone haywire. According to university policy if a decision is going to be made about SEG fees there should be consultation by the administration with the SEG fee committee to discuss the evidence. I know there’s a deficit of $120,000 in SEG fees between the two campuses. I know you’re going to have reduced enrollment…. the graphs show it. So adjustments have to be made. I know there was no discussion with the athletic directors, Debbie Butschlick (UWM at Washington County) and Adam Ligocki (UW-Waukesha), about what are your ideas. How can you reduce your operating costs to make a viable program and continue with athletics on your campus? That did not happen. The decision was made by Courtney, Steve and Dan – this is our recommendation we are going to cut athletics.

“I don’t know what the steps were, and this was not handled right and Steve you have to agree with that, and you do too Courtney.

“I personally believe that a program can be devised on this campus and on the Waukesha campus a very modest program, but athletics will remain. Right now, sunset it’s dead; no more after next year,” said Brigham. A letter from WCC disputed the fact made by Schmid that the conference “will be terminated next year.”

Dodge Co.  Sheriff making over 100 traffic stops at construction site Hwy 33 and CTH P

Although alternate routes are posted to steer clear of construction of a new roundabout at Highway 33 and County Highway P the Dodge County Sheriff said they’ve been handing out an unbelievable amount of citations for people driving around barricades and through the construction site.

“We’re busy issuing citations,” said Sheriff Dale Schmidt. “We’ve had a lot of traffic stops in the last week and a half.” Construction to build a $1.5 million roundabout began Monday, April 15 at the intersection of Highway 33 and County P in neighboring Dodge County. The Department of Transportation (DOT) said it was needed to improve safety. The money to pay for the project is from the Highway Safety Improvement Program.

“The intersection is closed,” said Schmidt. “You can’t drive through it, period. You can’t drive through it at all …. and people are driving right through it.”

“It’s not a long stretch of road it’s just the intersection. When our signs in front say, ‘Road Closed’ you can’t just go around it,” he said. The citation for Failure to Obey Traffic Signs is $175.30 and three points on your driver’s license. “The second violation within a year is $213,” said Schmidt. The road is expected to open July 3. Schmidt said something needed to be done to improve safety at that intersection.

“We had a lot of crashes there before they put the four-way stop up,” he said. “They put the four-way stop up as a temporary measure knowing they were going to eventually put the roundabout in. The four-way stop definitely worked and I think that will continue once the roundabout is done.”

Volunteers repair fencing at Fireman’s Park in Newburg

Volunteers from D&D Fencing in West Bend worked to replace the fence at the baseball diamond at Newburg Fireman’s Park. The field sustained extensive damage during the spring thaw in March as giant pieces of ice tore through the park when the river breached the shoreline.

This is the third year the park has been damaged during the spring thaw. D&D Fencing said it would cover time and labor if the athletic department pay for the material. Mano Fencing from Racine also stepped in to help repair the fence. About half the fencing was reused. The athletic department is reviewing its options. The park experienced heavy flooding after the DNR removed the dam upstream.

Park admission waived for summer Traveling Beer Garden tour in Washington County

The Washington County Parks Department said it will waive admission to the park during its Traveling Beer Garden this summer. Earlier this month the Washington County Park and Trail System announced a new public-private partnership with Black Husky Brewing from Milwaukee.  Black Husky will host a series of traveling beer gardens throughout Washington County.

One of the questions from neighbors eager to take advantage of the beer garden asked was whether they’d have to get a park pass to attend.

“We are still working to finalize the contract, but we do plan to allow free entry to the parks for beer garden patrons during the beer garden times,” said Jamie Ludovic, Central Services Director. In December 2017 the Washington County Parks Department announced it would begin charging visitors $5 daily pass or $30 annual sticker.

Operation Avery’s Playroom | By Crystal Zurn

Justin Handrow grew up in Hartford and graduated Hartford High School.  Justin, Liz, and their children now live in Grafton. The couple have three children including a daughter Avery who is suffering cancer. Below is a story by Crystal Zurn from Slinger who is hoping to help the Handrow family with a remodeling project for their children.

“It’s cancer,” — two words that no one ever wants to hear, and if you do, one can’t imagine the painful way that it irreversibly flips your world upside down.

Those are the words the Handrow family heard on February 23, 2018 regarding their 1-1/2-year-old daughter, Avery. They later found out Avery has rhabdomyosarcoma, cancer in her face muscle. Despite several chemo and radiation treatments, in September 2018 they got more heartbreaking news that her cancer had spread to her lungs and lymph nodes.

This family has gone through an insurmountable amount of pain and heartbreak, and they need a beacon of hope in their lives. As Avery continues her treatments and care, it is imperative she stay as healthy as possible. Her immune system is very weak, so she often must be quarantined at her home and is unable to go outside. Spending this much time indoors has become a challenge for the Handrows, as they need more room for their kids to play, run, imagine, and grow (and for all of the toys that allow them to do this!)

We have spoken with the family and decided we are going to help them by finishing off their basement and creating a large playroom for Avery and her siblings! We have dubbed this project

We have volunteers and contractors who are willing to donate their time and efforts towards seeing this project through, but we need your help! We are looking for the following to be donated to successfully complete this project:

– Building materials such as lumber, drywall, etc. Monetary gift towards Operation Avery’s Playroom, which will go towards purchasing supplies, paint, decorations, and furnishings.

Our goal is to raise $7,500 for this project. Any amount, no matter how small, will go towards making a significant improvement to the lives of Avery and her family.

If you can’t give, but still want to support our cause, please share our page with your friends, family members, and coworkers. With more people aware of our cause, we will be one step closer to reaching our goal.

West Bend woman runs the U.S. to raise awareness for MS             By Tabetha Wolfe

Tabetha Wolfe of Germantown is helping bring awareness to multiple sclerosis (MS) via the MS Run the US. “The run is dedicated to raising awareness and funds to support multiple sclerosis (MS) research, while also supporting those living with disability due to MS,” said Wolfe.

The running events focus on promoting a healthy lifestyle while inspiring individuals to maximize their capabilities and become more active to help those in need.  The MS Run the US- Relay is an annual 3,260-mile relay run across America for multiple sclerosis. On Monday, April 15, Wolfe started Segment 2 of the MS Run the US relay across America. She will be running a marathon a day for eight days (204 miles) from Barstow, CA to Las Vegas, NV. Below is a story from Wolfe about her fourth day on the road.

Day 4✔ 28.06 miles with 112.6 miles covered over the last four days. Over half-way done.

Our first night camping in the desert started out with a bang as we were getting ready to turn in for the evening the generator for the RV went out. The crew tried to get it going but were unsuccessful. So, we spent the night without the generator…not a big deal. But this will propose some interesting camping tonight.

Today started out rough, I went up hill covering over 2,000 feet in elevation. The first three miles I was not mentally in the right place but kept repeating a quote from the letter my daughter wrote me… “Everything you need is already within.”

I also reflected on why I am out in the middle of the Mojave Desert. I am here from my mother-in-law Betty and my cousin Kelly Witte along with all the others that suffer with MS and to make this invisible disease VISIBLE! And that got me through.

Although it was rough, I kept plugging away. At mile 9 Peter told me it flattens out over the next three miles then it’s all down. Well the next three miles were all up, and big up. But after mile 12 I finally hit the down. It was great to open and pick the pace a bit.

I finished at an old train station that has been changed into the visitor center. This was an awesome place to end since the generator is broken, we can’t shower so I was able to use the bathroom to clean up and then sit in air conditioning. Now we are eating then enjoying the desert night sky. Until tomorrow. Which will bring another 2,000 feet in elevation…. again.

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Raffle Prizes

From the questionable annuls of “any press is good press

An event benefiting Officer Robert Rialmo — who faces potential firing for fatally shooting two people — will feature a raffle for gift certificates for guns.

A notice for the May 10 evening event at the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police union hall calls for a $20 donation. Ticket holders gain entry into a raffle with advertised prizes of a rifle, a gun and an iPad.

The announcement says the fundraiser will benefit Rialmo, who shot and killed 19-year-old Quintonio LeGrier as he carried a baseball bat after a domestic disturbance on the West Side in 2015. Rialmo also accidentally killed bystander Bettie Jones, 55. Rialmo is not being paid as he faces firing for the shooting, a Police Department spokesman said.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Rumor resolved regarding possible Denny’s restaurant at Kwik Trip in Richfield

 There’s been quite a bit of scuttlebutt regarding the future Kwik Trip at the old Richfield Truck Stop, 2900 State Road 167 in Richfield. Yes, it’s true the old Richfield Truck Stop has been leveled. It’s true a new Kwik Trip is moving in. It will include a new gas station, convenience store and car wash and is expected to employ up to 80 people.

But no, it is NOT true a Denny’s restaurant will be included in the plan.

Troy Mleziva is the head of real estate for Kwik Trip. “Richfield… no Denny’s at the Kwik Trip there. That’s just somebody’s rumor.” One of the thoughts that may have sparked the rumor is Denny’s and Kwik Trip have teamed up in the past. In 2015 posted a story in its food service column about four new Kwik Trip stores carrying Denny’s restaurants.

Kwik Trip Inc. has forged a deal with Denny’s to open full-service restaurants at four of the convenience-store and travel center retailer’s locations, Denny’s CEO John Miller said during the company’s third-quarter earnings call. The Kwik Trip in Richfield is expected to open in November/December 2019.

Erin Hills to host 2025 U.S. Women’s Open and 2022 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championships

Erin Hills has been selected as the host site for the 2025 U.S. Women’s Open and 2022 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championships.

The U.S. Women’s Open, the ultimate test in women’s golf, will be contested May 29-June 1. The 2022 U.S. Mid-Amateur will be played Sept. 10-15, with Blue Mound Golf and Country Club, in Wauwatosa, Wis., serving as the stroke-play co-host course.

“We are thrilled to return to Erin Hills, and to bring the U.S. Women’s Open and U.S. Mid-Amateur to such a memorable and deserving course,” said Mike Davis, CEO of the USGA. “To bring these championships to a public facility all golfers can enjoy is especially exciting for us. The USGA has a great relationship with the facility, and Erin Hills has proven to be one of the premier golf venues in the nation as well as an excellent test.”

The championships will be the fourth and fifth USGA championships conducted at Erin Hills.

Tree dedication in Hartford on Saturday, April 20 for Logan Johnson

There will be a tree dedication for Logan Johnson at noon on April 20. All are welcome and encouraged to attend.

Logan Johnson was a healthy 8-year-old boy when he was diagnosed with an illness called Myocarditis (Inflammation of the heart) which doctors believe was caused by Parvovirus B-19 (known as 5th disease).

The nightmare began May 6, 2017. Logan played a soccer game that morning. He had been sick with a low-grade fever the day before and seemed to be feeling better, but the game wore him out and the fever returned. Later that day, he complained of pain in his chest and abdomen. He collapsed at home and was taken by ambulance to Children’s Hospital. After many hours and extensive tests, ultrasounds, and lab work – he was diagnosed with Myocarditis. He was placed on life support to try to save him.

After three excruciating weeks in the hospital, Logan went to heaven and is now safe in the arms of Jesus. Two days prior to becoming ill Logan asked his mom what his purpose was and why God made him. Little did this 8-year-old know that his story and journey would touch so many lives and bring people closer to their faith in God.

On April 20 there will also be free lunch from 12:30 to 2:30 at the concession stand consisting of a hot dog and chips. Everyone is invited to get together to remember Logan.

Additionally, there will be “A Love for Logan” fundraising jar out on April 20 at the concession stand, all proceeds for “Love for Logan” go to Children’s Hospital.

The Hartford Soccer club has planted several trees at Independence Park to honor the memory of our players whose lives have ended too young, as an outward remembrance for those missed and to remind everyone to enjoy life and “get out there and play.”

This most recent tree planted and to be dedicated on April 20 at noon is in honor of Logan Johnson, a Hartford Soccer Club player who passed from heart disease in 2017. We look forward to everyone coming to celebrate Logan’s life with us!

The rainbow eggers are selling like hot cakes at West Bend Elevator

The chicks are in at West Bend Elevator and they’re selling like hot cakes. The chicks are a day or two old.  “We’d name our chicks Peach and Fuzz,” said Dana. The chicks are yellow, black, and orange and if you get the ones with the colorful heads then the eggs will be multicolored (true fact those are called rainbow eggers). The weather is still a bit cool and West Bend Elevator recommends a heat lamp. The chicks are all about a day or two old and they’re going for $4.50 apiece. If these sell out, he next shipment is expecting May.

Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School Succeeds at State Forensics | By Megan Himm

Students from Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School (KML) participated in the state forensics meet on April 13. The event took place on the campus of the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Students only did their piece once and immediately received score sheets after all performances in the room were completed.  After they took their score sheets back to their coach who would later get their medals.

A perfect score of 25 earned a gold medal, a score of 23-24 earned a silver medal, a score of 20-22 earned a bronze medal, and a score of 5-19 earned a small bronze medal.

A total of six students from KML earned gold medals. After everything in Madison wrapped up, KML followed tradition and stopped for food and ice cream on the way home. As the forensics season ends, students look forward to the end of the year party, with more ice cream and awards.

Gold winners include Amy Deibert (senior), Maria Zimmerman (senior), Emily Gliniecki (senior), Megan Himm (junior), Madelyn Lechmaier (junior), Amelia Pfund (freshman).

Silver medalists include Megan Parbs (senior), Megan Moeller (junior), Amelia Neuwirth (junior), Abigail Kesting (junior), Elizabeth Farley (junior), Claire & Emma Semenske (junior and freshman), Kayla Nommensen (junior), Libby Markgraf (junior), Josie Jacklin & Brayden Smith (freshmen), and Emilia Lechmaier (freshman). Rebekah White and Jenna Young (junior)- bronze, Logan Hennen (freshman)- bronze

Kettle Moraine Symphony and Choruses performs at Holy Hill May 5    By Connie Schulist

Kettle Moraine Symphony and Moraine Chorus along with members of Bel Canto Chorus return to the Basilica at Holy Hill Sunday, May 5 at 3 p.m. to perform Lauridsen’s “Lux Aeterna”, along with Mozart’s “Vesperae solennes de Confessore” and “Exsultate Jubilate”, conducted by Dr. Richard Hynson. The Moraine Chorus is directed and rehearsed by Dr. Peter Gibeau, UW-Washington County professor of music and KMS principal contrabassist.

Tickets are $18 for adults, $15 for seniors, $5 for students. Due to its length, this concert is not recommended for children under 12. Tickets may be purchased online by going to the KMS website at, or by check made out to the Kettle Moraine Symphony, PO Box 52, West Bend, WI 53095. Tickets are also available at the following outlets: Horicon Bank in West Bend. More information is available on the website or by calling 262-334-3469.

Operation Avery’s Playroom | By Crystal Zurn

Justin Handrow grew up in Hartford and graduated Hartford High School.  Justin, Liz, and their children now live in Grafton. The couple have three children including a daughter Avery who is suffering cancer. Below is a story by Crystal Zurn from Slinger who is hoping to help the Handrow family with a remodeling project for their children.

“It’s cancer,” — two words that no one ever wants to hear, and if you do, one can’t imagine the painful way that it irreversibly flips your world upside down.

Those are the words the Handrow family heard on February 23, 2018 regarding their 1-1/2-year-old daughter, Avery. They later found out Avery has rhabdomyosarcoma, cancer in her face muscle. Despite several chemo and radiation treatments, in September 2018 they got more heartbreaking news that her cancer had spread to her lungs and lymph nodes.

This family has gone through an insurmountable amount of pain and heartbreak, and they need a beacon of hope in their lives. As Avery continues her treatments and care, it is imperative she stay as healthy as possible. Her immune system is very weak, so she often must be quarantined at her home and is unable to go outside. Spending this much time indoors has become a challenge for the Handrows, as they need more room for their kids to play, run, imagine, and grow (and for all of the toys that allow them to do this!)

We have spoken with the family and decided we are going to help them by finishing off their basement and creating a large playroom for Avery and her siblings! We have dubbed this project

We have volunteers and contractors who are willing to donate their time and efforts towards seeing this project through, but we need your help! We are looking for the following to be donated to successfully complete this project:

– Building materials such as lumber, drywall, etc.

– Monetary gift towards Operation Avery’s Playroom, which will go towards purchasing supplies, paint, decorations, and furnishings.

Our goal is to raise $7,500 for this project. Any amount, no matter how small, will go towards making a significant improvement to the lives of Avery and her family.

If you can’t give, but still want to support our cause, please share our page with your friends, family members, and coworkers. With more people aware of our cause, we will be one step closer to reaching our goal.

West Bend woman runs the U.S. to raise awareness for MS             By Tabetha Wolfe

Tabetha Wolfe of Germantown is helping bring awareness to multiple sclerosis (MS) via the MS Run the US. “The run is dedicated to raising awareness and funds to support multiple sclerosis (MS) research, while also supporting those living with disability due to MS,” said Wolfe.

The running events focus on promoting a healthy lifestyle while inspiring individuals to maximize their capabilities and become more active to help those in need.

The MS Run the US- Relay is an annual 3,260-mile relay run across America for multiple sclerosis. On Monday, April 15, Wolfe started Segment 2 of the MS Run the US relay across America. She will be running a marathon a day for eight days (204 miles) from Barstow, CA to Las Vegas, NV. Below is a story from Wolfe about her fourth day on the road.

Day 4✔ 28.06 miles with 112.6 miles covered over the last four days. Over half-way done.

Our first night camping in the desert started out with a bang as we were getting ready to turn in for the evening the generator for the RV went out. The crew tried to get it going but were unsuccessful. So, we spent the night without the generator…not a big deal. But this will propose some interesting camping tonight.

Today started out rough, I went up hill covering over 2,000 feet in elevation. The first three miles I was not mentally in the right place but kept repeating a quote from the letter my daughter wrote me… “Everything you need is already within.”

I also reflected on why I am out in the middle of the Mojave Desert. I am here from my mother-in-law Betty and my cousin Kelly Witte along with all the others that suffer with MS and to make this invisible disease VISIBLE! And that got me through.

Although it was rough, I kept plugging away. At mile 9 Peter told me it flattens out over the next three miles then it’s all down. Well the next three miles were all up, and big up. But after mile 12 I finally hit the down. It was great to open and pick the pace a bit.

I finished at an old train station that has been changed into the visitor center. This was an awesome place to end since the generator is broken, we can’t shower so I was able to use the bathroom to clean up and then sit in air conditioning. Now we are eating then enjoying the desert night sky. Until tomorrow. Which will bring another 2,000 feet in elevation…. again.

West Bend’s Memorial Day observance will be Monday, May 27, 2019

Line up for the parade will be on S. Main Street between Oak Street and Decorah Road between 8:15 a.m. and 9:15 a.m. with the parade stepping off at 9:30 a.m. sharp. The parade will end on Sixth Avenue and Poplar Street at the Memorial Plaza just north of the old Washington County Courthouse. The program is scheduled to begin at approximately 10:30 a.m. In case of inclement weather, the program will be held inside the Old Courthouse Museum. Boy Scout troop 780 will again be selling brats, hot dogs and soda at the Plaza.

Updates & tidbits

-On Saturday, April 20, 2019 from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., the West Bend Police Department will be selling approximately 70 abandoned bicycles. The bike sale will occur at the West Bend Police Department at 350 Vine Street.

-The West Bend Moose Lodge is hosting its annual free Easter dinner. This year the meal will be served promptly at noon on Easter Sunday, April 21.

– Tickets go on sale April 21 for the 32nd annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm. It will be held June 21 at Highland Dairy, LLC this year in Kewaskum. Mike, Linda and Corey Enright are set to roll out the red carpet and invite guests to tour the robotic farm, listen to live music and share in some eggs, ham, pancakes and applesauce.

Miss Wisconsin USA Danika Tramburg of Richfield to compete in Miss USA

Miss Wisconsin USA 2019 Danika Tramburg of Richfield will be leaving Sunday to compete for the Miss USA crown on May 2 in Reno Tahoe.

Tramburg, 22, is a graduate of Living Word Lutheran High School in Jackson and she completed college at Concordia University Wisconsin in three and a half years earning a Bachelor of Science in Sport and Entertainment Business. She won the title of Miss USA Wisconsin in September 2018. Tramburg will be one of 51 women competing in the pageant in Reno Tahoe.  She sat down at the Museum of Wisconsin Art to talk a bit about the upcoming pageant and what will be required should she win.

“The difference between my title and Miss America is that Miss America has a talent portion of competition and they recently got rid of the swimsuit portion. Miss USA, we compete in interview, swimsuit, evening gown and then there’s an on-stage question and Miss USA then continues to Miss Universe so there’s that international component.”

“Aside from the title of Miss Wisconsin USA, and my sash and crown it’s really a year of service,” she said. “When you go into this and win you have to understand this is a platform and you have the opportunity to share your voice about something you’re passionate about and that’s what Miss Wisconsin USA means to me and it gives me the opportunity to spread awareness about human trafficking  platform and it gives me a greater voice to do so that’s what this whole title embodies.”

Behind the scenes, Tramburg said she’s pretty much the girl next door.

“I work a full-time job, I have two planners, I’m super close to my family and there are always things that are being thrown at you including a lot of requests that come out of nowhere so you just have to be on your toes,” Tramburg said. “It takes a strong individual and a well-organized individual to handle everything that comes at you and I’ve been really fortunate growing up playing sports and it’s given me a sense of time-management, dedication and determination to handle all those things.”

Tramburg currently works as a full-time marketing associate at Kapco in Grafton. She uses her profile to bring awareness to the cause of fighting human trafficking. She volunteers with Wisconsin organizations including Washington County Anti-Trafficking Advocates, Susan G. Komen Foundation, Hunger Task Force, Juvenile Diabetes Association, and Special Olympics.

Tramburg recently sat down for a one-on-one interview at the Museum of Wisconsin Art where she spoke about her pageant titles, how she’s preparing for Miss USA and she talked passionately about her faith.

“Honestly faith…  that’s the glue to everything,” said Tramburg.“There’s always things life is throwing at you and my faith is everything and I don’t think I would honestly be where I am right now in this position where I can be a voice for the community and I believe God put me here for a reason.”

Tramburg said her faith has kept her “grounded and humble.”

“My strong faith has carried me through this journey we call life. From working the Super Bowl to engaging in philanthropic initiatives with the National Basketball Wives Association, playing college basketball to being Miss Wisconsin United States 2017, continuing to place in the top 10 at Miss United States and now holding the title of Miss Wisconsin USA 2019…I am always amazed to see what God has in store for me. Volunteerism is a passion of mine. Giving back is the start of creating a loving world. A topic that is truly moving to me is human trafficking and I strive to spread awareness of this horrific crime against humanity using my voice for those who are voiceless.

I believe we are all placed on this earth for a unique purpose. Although we may get caught up in the day to day struggles, there are so many great things to keep our focus on. I find comfort in the words of John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” My mission is to help others discover their unique purpose through recognizing their gifts and talents and utilizing them to be the best they can be and help others in the process.

See Danika’s social media pages on Facebook and Instagram for details on her Miss USA journey and her lifestyle blog PerfectYourPurpose.

Women reminisce about tradition to show off Easter dresses

Easter Sunday is a day to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. That day also represents the advent of spring fashion with sweaters instead of heavy coats, anklets instead of knee socks and lighter colors with jubilant patterns. Since the 1870s women and girls have followed tradition using that Sunday to show off their Easter dresses and neighbors in West Bend have done the same.

Joan Hoff, 79, of Cedar Ridge grew up in Milwaukee and later the Campbellsport area. Years ago, she too kept an eye on the forecast as Easter approached.

“I especially remember two weeks before Easter I hoped it would be warm enough, so we didn’t have to wear a coat over our new dress,” said Hoff. “It was a big deal if it was going to be raining.”

Hoff remembered her dress was “something fluffy with a full skirt.”

“And we always wore hats to church; kind of a bonnet and as an adult it was a pillbox.

Hoff attended St. Aloysius in West Allis and when she had daughters of her own, she got them “spiffed up, especially for Easter Mass.”

“I sewed tons,” said Hoff noting her daughters were far enough apart in age that she never dressed them alike. “I used whites or pastels; you would never have a red plaid or navy blue.”

Hoff remembered sleeves on the dresses often with a button on the back and a little zipper on the side to pull it over their head. And her girls always “had white shoes, even though it wasn’t Memorial Day”

“My younger daughter had a purse passed down from her cousin and it was shaped like a little parasol with a curved handle. That was her purse going to church and she loved it,” said Hoff.

Mary ‘Sis’ Eberhart, 64, grew up in Milwaukee and we got her Easter dress at Schuster’s Department Store on 12th and Vliet.

“It’s where we always went shopping,” said Eberhart. “I was 12 at the time and had an Easter hat with little flowers and my dad always bought me good shoes.”

Mary Radovich, 86, from Cedar Ridge remembered the financial woes of the Great Depression and how “when you got something new for Easter you always managed to get a dress.”

“You bought it a Goldman’s where the price was the cheapest,” said Radovich recalling the $1.98 spent on the dress.

At the time Radovich attended church at St. John’s on Ninth and Mineral. “The dress was pink with satiny material; I can just see myself,” she sighed. “You normally bought the dress two sizes bigger than what you really needed because it had to last that long for Sunday church. “I didn’t have a hat or purse – I was just lucky to get a dress,” she said.

While growing up, Radovich and her family struggled financially and were resigned to living on the county dole.

“At that time, we had only one choice of style shoe and it was made in Waupun – always at the prison,” said Radovich of the black Oxford county-issued shoes.

“Once a friend of mine gave me a pair of sandals; she had worn them out and there was a hole in the sole but she gave them to me and I put cardboard in and then nobody knew I had county shoes,” she laughed recalling how sly she felt in her cobbled shoes.

Barb Justman from BJ & Company recalled wearing a pastel yellow dress with lots of ruffles.

“I also had a flowery hat, white gloves, and of course those dandy white leotards,” said Justman whose mom would lay everything out the night before Easter so they would be ready to go for 6 a.m. church service.

“My dress would hang from the living room chandelier so as not to wrinkle,” said Justman. “And I even got to wear the dress ALL day!”

Lori Lynn Radloff remembered the Easter hats with the elastic under the chin. “My brother would pull and snap it. I think everyone goes thru that,” said Lynn Radloff.

Cathy Majkowski of West Bend grew up with four sisters and each had a homemade Easter dress. “I always worried about getting chocolate from the big candy bunny on my dress,” she said.

One year the Easter Bunny brought the Majkowski family a pair of white albino bunnies which they promptly determined were girls and named them Melanie and Tina. Another year Majkowski insisted on a new pair of shoes to go with her dress.

“I did not want hand me downs for Easter; my mom said ‘no’and I threw a hissy fit in the store, only to find the shoes in my Easter basket in the morning,” she said.

Jill Clare, 80, from Cedar Ridge grew up in West Bend and had five girls. “We were members of Holy Angels and I made all their dresses,” said Clare confirming five handmade dresses each year.

“I only used pastels and one year I made them all in a purple gingham check, lavender and white and by the time that passed down I didn’t want to see lavender anymore – nor did the girls,” said Clare.

The style of Clare’s handmade dresses featured little puffed sleeves, Peter Pan collars, with a button by the opening in the back, a full skirt and always a small bow.

For accessories, Clare relied on the five and dime Ben Franklin discount stores.

“They all had little caps with a bow under their chin, white gloves, and patent leather shoes with anklets and tiny drawstring purses,” she said.

“I always made my husband wear a suit because Easter Sunday was a dress up day,” said Clare.

This article was originally published in 2012.

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Knowing Christ through Prayer

Scott Walker has a beautiful column in the Washington Times today. Go read the whole thing.

During the first presidential debate in Cleveland in August 2015, I was asked what kind of impact God had on my life. First, I mentioned that I am a sinner and that it is only by the blood of Jesus Christ that I am saved. I try to do His will every day but it’s not like God sends us an email with instructions on what we are supposed to do (it would be much easier if He did). No, instead God asks us to have a personal relationship with Him. Prayer is a way to help understand God’s will.

Which brings me back to that sermon in Iowa. After describing the wonderful image of prayer, the visiting professor told us of how he received a call from the staff at the nursing home a few days after his visit. They thanked him for coming by to see their patient as he passed away during the previous night.

Amazingly, the man who had been confined to a bed for some time had found the strength to get out of that bed and crawl across the room. When they found him in the morning, he was laying with his head on the seat of the chair — he had found his final comfort resting his head in the lap of Jesus.

As we observe Good Friday today and celebrate Easter on Sunday, I pray that each of us can find that comfort — here on earth and in heaven.

• Scott Walker was the 45th governor of Wisconsin. You can contact him at or follow him @ScottWalker.

Cooper’s Hawks Thriving in Chicago

Never underestimate the power of nature to adapt.

In a study released late last year, University of Wisconsin researchers revealed that hawks, once in decline as a species, have recovered in numbers substantial enough that they are successfully expanding their territories into urban areas in Chicago.

Using data from decades of sightings faithfully reported by feeder watchers like Noe, University of Wisconsin professor of forest and wildlife ecology Benjamin Zuckerberg was able to show that only 20 percent of feeder watchers in the Chicago area spotted a hawk during the 1990s. Today that number is closer to 70 percent.

“Hawks like the Cooper’s and sharp-shinned (a similar, smaller species) are classic woodland hawks,” says Zuckerberg. “They were always traditionally thought about as these species that were really well adapted to big, uninterrupted forests. They’re the quintessential woodland predators.” Which is why Zuckerberg was surprised to see numbers rising sharply in city neighborhoods. “It turns out that many of these hawks are able to use urban areas, which is sort of unusual because you wouldn’t expect them to be able to use an urban habitat.”


One factor that makes Chicago a hospitable home for hawks, Zuckerberg says, is that “they have enough prey.” Larger and more common red-tailed hawks will hunt pigeons, rabbits or rats in alleyways and elsewhere in the city — they have even been spotted hunting alongside the “L,” following trains that flush out pigeons. But for Cooper’s hawks, which typically specialize in prey about the size of a robin or dove, bird feeders are key. “Now that you’ve got a lot of people feeding birds,” says Zuckerberg, “the secret is sort of out for these hawks.”

Beef Suspected in Food Poisoning Outbreak

The Romaine lettuce people are laughing now.

Health officials say ground beef is the likely source of a food poisoning outbreak that has sickened more than 100 people in six states.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday said no specific brand or source of the meat has been determined yet.

The CDC says people can continue to eat ground beef. The meat should be cooked thoroughly to 160 degrees to kill germs.

The outbreak started in early March. So far, 109 people have been infected with E. coli O103, an unusual strain of the bacteria. They reported eating ground beef at home and at restaurants. Seventeen people have been hospitalized. No one has died.

Blackhole Breakthrough


The first image of a black hole has been captured by astronomers, heralding a revolution in our understanding of the universe’s most enigmatic objects.

The picture shows a halo of dust and gas, tracing the outline of a colossal black hole, at the heart of the Messier 87 galaxy, 55 million light years from Earth.

The black hole itself – a cosmic trapdoor from which neither light nor matter can escape – is unseeable. But the latest observations take astronomers right to its threshold for the first time, illuminating the event horizon beyond which all known physical laws break down.

Pictures of Black Hole Coming Wednesday

So exciting!

Black holes are some of the most intriguing and mysterious objects in the universe, inspiring entire libraries of both scientific research and science fiction, from Einstein to the movie Interstellar. Yet despite the hold that their inconceivable gravity has on our imaginations, as well as our understanding of physics, humans have never actually seen a black hole.

That appears set to change Wednesday with the impending release of the first image taken of Sagittarius A, the black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy. It’s a landmark moment for both science and technology made possible by the Event Horizon Telescope, which is actually an array telescopes spread out across the Earth.


The EHT is actually an array of radio telescopes on different sides of the globe that are linked to create what’s called a Very Long Baseline Interferometer (VLBI) the size of the Earth itself. The basic idea here is that radio telescopes in different locations are combining their signals to boost their power.

If you’ve seen pictures of the Very Large Array in New Mexico (featured prominently in the 1997 movie Contact) with its multiple telescopic dishes all working together, then you can visualize the concept: Just imagine Jodie Foster tapping into an array of dishes that are separated not by meters but by thousands of miles instead.

This planet-sized observatory is necessary because, as the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory explains in the below animation, while Sagittarius A is 4 million times as massive as our sun, it’s still really far away — a distance of about 26,000 light years.

This is, of course, good news for all people interested in not getting sucked into a black hole, but it makes the thing very hard to photograph; it would be comparable to trying to see the dimples on a golf ball in Los Angeles… from New York. Better get out your super zoom lens, which is also kind of what the Event Horizon Telescope is.

Deadly Chicago

For birds.

Scientists estimate that at least 100 million and maybe as many as a billion birds die each year in the US when they collide with buildings, especially glass-covered or illuminated skyscrapers. And, in a new report, conservationists now have a better idea which American cities are the deadliest for those on the wing.

Chicago, with its many glass superstructures that spike into what is the busiest US avian airspace during migration, is the most dangerous city for those feathered travelers. More than 5 million birds from at least 250 different species fly through the Windy City’s downtown every fall and spring.

They journey twice a year, many thousands of miles, going north in the spring from Central and South America, across the Great Lakes to Canada, and back south in the fall.

Poacher Gets Comeuppance


A man attempting to poach a rhino in the Kruger National Park was crushed to death by an elephant before being eaten by a pride of lions leaving behind his skull and a pair of pants.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Cannabis Collective LLC opens in West Bend

 Cannabis Collective LLC is now open in West Bend; it’s located inside Cherry Pickin’s Home Furnishing, 549 W. Washington Street.

“We specialize in CBD oil,” said owner Melissa Collett.

CBD stands for cannabidiol which is naturally found in hemp plants. “Research is showing and people’s anecdotical evidence shows people who use CBD experience relief from anxiety or chronic pain, muscle pain, and it helps you sleep,” said Collett.

While the raw product or flower may look like marijuana and carry a similar aroma, the product is legal. In Wisconsin hemp was officially legalized by Gov. Scott Walker in April 2017.

“We carry an isolate product which has zero percent THC and we have full plant or full spectrum with a legal limit of 0.3 percent THC,” Collett said.

The boutique shop is in a cozy corner on the first level of Cherry Pickin’s. Simple glass cabinets carry three tiers of shelving with a variety of CBD products including oils, Gummy morsels, sprays, flowers and products for your pets.

While CBD outlets are becoming more common in music stores and craft stores, Collett said the items she carries are handpicked for purity.

“We have the least amount of extra ingredients in our products,” she said.

Dyes and preservatives are common in a variety of CBD items. “Most people don’t have many negative side effects, but I’ve seen people come in with their old bottles and when you read the label there are all sorts of artificial ingredients,” Collett said.  “Our products don’t have that.”

One of the manufacturers carried at Cannabis Collective is Wisconsin Hemp Scientific based in Sussex, WI. “Everything is grown locally and all of it is lab tested,” said Collett. “Most of the bottles have a scan code and with the scan you can see the full lab results.”

Customers at Cannabis Collective are extremely inquisitive about the product.  “Typically, the people I see are ones who have pain or migraines or a muscle strain. We have products for all of it,” she said. “These products don’t get you high or drugged, you just feel calm,”

Cannabis Collective carries a variety of items including body balm, soft gels, Gummies, and oral spray. “You can smoke it or put it in your vaporizer or place the oil under your tongue or topically on the back of your neck,” said Collett. “If people don’t like the texture of the oil, we do carry gel capsules and we have shampoo and conditioner.”

Prices of CBD items vary. Collett invites people to come into the store and look around and ask questions. She said they will only sell items to people 18 and older.

Even though Cannabis Collective opened just a couple weeks ago, Collett said she is hoping to expand with other outlets in neighboring communities. “We have the best quality product and the most educated staff and that’s what will set us apart from the other stores,” she said.

Cannabis Collective is open weekdays from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

West Bend woman runs the U.S. to raise awareness for MS             By Tabetha Wolfe

Tabetha Wolfe of Germantown is helping bring awareness to multiple sclerosis (MS) via the MS Run the US. “The run is dedicated to raising awareness and funds to support multiple sclerosis (MS) research, while also supporting those living with disability due to MS,” said Wolfe.

The running events focus on promoting a healthy lifestyle while inspiring individuals to maximize their capabilities and become more active to help those in need.

The MS Run the US- Relay is an annual 3,260-mile relay run across America for multiple sclerosis.

 Tabetha Wolfe’s story is below

I was selected from a pool of runners to run Segment 2 of the MS Run the US relay across America. So, in April, I will be running a marathon a day for eight days (204 miles) from Barstow, CA to Las Vegas, NV in honor of my mother-in-law Betty and my cousin Kelly whom both suffer from Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and all those suffering from MS.

I began running and completing obstacle course races following a lifestyle change in 2015, where I have completed numerous races ranging from a 5K to a 50K.

I landed a few podium spots…most notably the Husar’s Diamond Dash in 2018. I love the medals, t-shirts, and the occasional beer, but I wanted to put my passion for running to use in a way that could make a difference in my community.

I saw a post last year on Facebook; a friend was looking for donations. She was running Segment 14, of MS Run the US.

After contacting her and doing research on my own, I quickly became intrigued by what this relay was about, and I knew it was my calling. As soon as I saw their post about accepting applications for 2019 ultra-runners, I filled one out and sent it in. In August of 2018 I was contacted to set up an interview to become an ultra-runner and I was super excited, but also shocked they chose me.

After I interviewed with Ashely, I felt great about the organization and the journey that awaited. After what seemed like an eternity, I received my acceptance letter to be an ultra-runner and run Segment 2.

I quickly realized my segment began in April and that was only seven months away. I have been training and running races since my acceptance.

I have had my ups and downs during the training process, but I try to stay positive. This run wasn’t so much a goal to complete but a way for me to use what I love to honor those I love.

It is for my mother-in-law, my cousin, friends, and 2.2 million people living with MS.

 The Relay begins each year mid-April in Santa Monica, CA and finishes mid-August in New York, NY. Relay runners are selected via an online application process; each person participates as an individual segment runner as a part of the Ultra Relay team.

To participate each runner commits to fundraising $10,000 over 10 months and to running approximately 160-miles over six consecutive days during his or her assigned Relay segment.

There are 19 segments total in the relay spanning from California to New York. Once selected each runner spends months training and fundraising before the event as they prepare to devote one week on the road with the nonprofit while completing their segment’s miles.

Each runner’s section is logistically coordinated back-to-back as a part of the collective team effort to run 3,100-miles over the duration of 4.5 months.

Helicopter delivery for downtown’s Historic West Bend Theatre

A locally-owned company in Barton has been awarded the bid to install new heating and air conditioning at the downtown West Bend Theatre, 125 N. Main Street. Albiero Plumbing and HVAC will be adding some aerial flare to its effort as they use a helicopter to deliver the new units to the rooftop of the downtown theatre.

“We’ll use the helicopter to remove the old units and then deliver four new ones,” said Albiero’s John Bohn. Albiero Plumbing is still working out the logistics with the City of West Bend, the Police Department, and the helicopter company.

Staging for this install will be at the former Gehl Company parking lot, just off Water Street and S. Forest Avenue. “We’re going to be flying the equipment back and forth between the theatre and staging,” said Bohn.

There will be some big safety issues to consider about this type of special delivery. Bohn said the roads they fly over, including Water Street and Veterans Avenue, will be closed during the project which is estimated to take four to six hours.

Albiero’s Travis Roell said logistically it wasn’t possible to complete the project from the ground because of restrictions on closing Main Street in the Downtown West Bend Business District.

“We couldn’t bring in a crane because we’d have to shut down the road for two days,” said Roell. “This probably hasn’t been done before ….  we’ve not done this before.”

Years ago, when the theatre was built in 1929, Roell speculates a crane had to be used to install the heating system. “Who knows… they could have taken them up there with ropes for all we know,” he said.

Safety is a big factor and according to Bohn the helicopter company will require two crews for the project.

“One will be on the ground in the staging area to hook the equipment to the helicopter and another crew on the roof to guide it into place,” he said.

Midwest Helicopter from Illinois will be assisting Albiero Plumbing with the project. Below is a video of some of its work as it lifted a Beach Bonanza B36 out of a bean field and back to DuPage Airport.

“We’re pretty excited about this project,” said Roell. “We’re wishing we could get into the helicopter, but I don’t think that’s going to happen for anybody, but it’ll be interesting to see.”

Right now, the exact date for instillation is still in flux.

Right now, there are four rooftop heating units and the AC is ingenious.

“There’s a six-foot tall giant squirrel cage in the basement and back in the day it would cycle water from the river with a huge fan and it would blow that cool air into the theatre,” said Roell. “That unit is still in the building, we’ve seen it… it’s kind of a piece of history in and of itself.”

Hunter Zaskowski from West Bend takes the podium at Nationals | By WBHS Team

Hunter Zaskowski, WBHS Snowboard alumni and season coach, has been competing at a national level for five years.  On Thursday, April 4, Zaskowski took the podium receiving a bronze medal in Giant Slalom.

After winning his own race in the JAMS bracket, he went back to the top of the course to coach Brian Pomeroy, a junior at WBHS-East.  Brian had a great day by advancing to finals and placing 4th of 32 competitors in the 16-17 age bracket.

What a great outcome after being only his second year competing at a national level.

Cole Rummel, who is in the same bracket as Brian, unfortunately was unable to race today due to injury. Although this wasn’t how Rummel wanted to end his national experience, he had a fantastic season.

Ethan Benedict was also on the GS course today and placed 25th of 42 competitors. Ethan has had a great week as well.

Lauren Nast had an experience on her first national boardercross course. She placed 29th feels good about her time, while looking forward to future races on a technical course such as this. No local hill can prepare you for what nationals offers.

Kelci Waters was off and got to enjoy her time strolling through beautiful Breckenridge, and treat herself to a favorite, Starbucks.

 Slinger High School marketing class rebrands local business       By Alexia Kossow

Slinger High School’s Advertising and Promotion class was presented with the task of re-branding the outdated frozen yogurt shop, “Fill N’ Chill” located in downtown Slinger.

Students were asked to make improvements regarding the name and logo, refinishing adjustments, as well as other important business elements including the hours of operation and positioning the frozen yogurt store.

In the beginning, the students began the process by taking notes on the subject matter and openly discussing with their team their thoughts and ideas. After that, the teams considered all ideas and came together to determine which ideas would meet the requirements and needs of the newest owner, Kerri Ast.

The process continued with the students taking their ideas and constructing them to become real life. The students used computer programs to build logos and floor plans, and then assembled information on their recommended business plans to later present to the owner of Fill N’ Chill.

On presentation day, students made their final preparations and rehearsed their presentations to ensure they maintained the professionalism the project was aiming towards. A lot of nerves were present leading up to the presentation, but overall many of the teams had a wide variety of ideas that all contributed to owner Kerri Ast’s overall business plan.

Slinger student Owen Zaskowski said, “Our team suggested a name change and created ‘Myogurt,’ and a color scheme of dark green, light green, and Irish cream color, in hopes of developing a feel that is healthy, yet fun.”

Even though Ast decided to keep the name Fill N’ Chill, she was so impressed with all the student ideas. Students applied their in-class knowledge on basic business principles and applied them to the real-world business atmosphere.

This Fill N’ Chill business presentation allowed Slinger High School students to get a real-life experience on how to create a business plan and present their ideas confidently and professionally. Students have been given the opportunity to encounter the types of things that marketing agencies observe every day.

Participant Mackenzie Bruger said, “This project has been a great learning experience for all of us and has most definitely furthered my business knowledge. It has been important for all us to tie in what we’ve been learning with a real-life situation.”

This project was very beneficial in introducing a real-world marketing atmosphere to Slinger High School students, and the Village of Slinger is looking forward to seeing the improvements owner Ast gives the local frozen yogurt shop.

West Bend Plan Commission gives green light to Kwik Trip No. 3

It took about four minutes worth of discussion and the West Bend Plan Commission wrapped up a public hearing for a conditional use permit and gave Kwik Trip a green light for development at 1300 E. Paradise Drive. The store is the former Citgo station also known as Egbert & Guido’s Express.  It’s on the northwest corner of Paradise Drive and S. River Road at the roundabout.

Plans below show a new design for the corner as the old Citgo building will be leveled and the store will be moved to the northwest back of the lot with the front facing the roundabout by S. River Road and Paradise Drive.

Plan Commission member Jed Dolnick had some concerns about the exit for the car wash possibly merging with three areas of cross traffic within the Kwik Trip parking lot. Troy Mleziva with Kwik Trip said if there is a way to work with staff on signage Kwik Trip would be happy to work to make sure it isn’t an issue.

This will be the third Kwik Trip in West Bend. The other stores are located on Silverbrook Drive just north of Paradise Drive and on the corner of S. Main Street and Decorah Road.

Recognizing Boltonville Fire Chief Ken Ramthun                               By Ron Naab

 The Boltonville Fire Department honored one of its own on Saturday, March 30. The celebration commemorated Ken Ramthun’s 47 years serving as a Chief Fire Officer for the department.

Ramthun started in 1969 and after three years of training and attending fire service educational programs he was chosen to be an Assistant Chief.

Assistant Chief Ramthun served in this capacity up until 2012 when he was elected Chief of the Boltonville Fire Department.

Ramthun was the Training Officer for many of his years as Assistant Chief. In addition, Ramthun was an adjunct instructor for Moraine Park Technical College teaching Firefighter I and Firefighter II courses along with Fire Apparatus Driver/Operator.

Town of Farmington Chairman Chris Elbe presented Ken with a formal resolution recognizing his many years serving as a Chief Officer.

Ron Naab, President of the Badger Firefighters Association, presented a citation plaque recognizing Ramthun’s years of mentoring and sharing his knowledge with others to be better firefighters.  The department had a very nice Maltese Cross plaque made with an axe in the center recognizing Ramthun for his outstanding leadership.

There were approximately 100 people in attendance, which included Ramthun’s immediate family and several firefighters from the area.

Deer Management meeting is Monday, April 8 in West Bend

A final report from the Deer Management Committee will be presented during a meeting April 8 at 5 p.m. Earlier this week during the Monday night Common Council meeting details were released on the number of deer killed during the 2018-19 program at Ridge Run Park and Lac Lawrann Concervancy. According to the agenda a recap will be presented by Certified Wildlife Biologist Charles Lovell. There will also be discussion about what’s ahead for 2020 and a possible deer removal program. The meeting next Monday, April 8 is open to the public and will be held at the Park & Rec Conference Room at City Hall.

 Open House is Saturday, April 6 at West Bend Airport

The Kettle Moraine chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association announces the availability of a flight training scholarship for young adults ages 15 – 19. Up to $10,000 will be awarded to an interested local candidate who is considering an aviation career and who is committed to flight training in the West Bend area.

The Ray Aviation Scholars program, administered by EAA, provides up to $10,000 in scholarships to young people who are seeking to learn to fly. The Ray Foundation seeks to improve the flight training success rate and assist young people in their interests in aviation.

The Ray Foundation is furthering the legacy of James Ray, an EAA lifetime member who was dedicated to aviation and youth education. The initiative is designed to help meet the tremendous future demand for pilots and associated aviation careers.

Interested young adults and parents should attend an open house Saturday, April 6 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Kettle Moraine EAA Educational Facility, 310 Aerial Drive at the West Bend Airport to learn about the scholarship opportunity and other programs available for youth.

The local EAA chapter also hosts a week-long camp for youths ages 12-19 that features hands on STEM and aviation activities. This year’s event runs from June 17-24.  For more information, come to EAA open house on April 6 or call 262 338 – 8411.

DNR Spring Hearings are Monday, April 8

On Monday, April 8, starting at 7 p.m. in each county of the state, individuals interested in natural resources management will have the opportunity to provide their input and testimony on proposed rule changes and advisory questions relating to conservation and fish and wildlife management in Wisconsin.

This year’s Spring Hearings will offer additional opportunity for the public to weigh in.

The DNR and WCC will provide an online option for input for those people who aren’t able to attend a hearing in person or for those who’d rather provide input at the hearing using their smart phone. The online version of the Spring Hearing questionnaire will be posted on the Spring Hearing website ( search keywords “spring hearings”). The input form will go live at 7 p.m. on April 8 and remain open until 7 p.m. on April 11.

The Spring Hearing input process allows the public the opportunity to comment and register their support or opposition to DNR proposed rule changes as well as Congress proposals that could someday become the rules that regulate fishing, hunting, trapping and other outdoor recreation activities in Wisconsin.  This year the DNR will be presenting 49 proposed rule change questions for input. Citizens may also submit ideas to address conservation needs or concerns they observe through the WCC resolution process and vote for WCC delegates to represent them on the Conservation Congress. However, providing input on resolutions or participating in the WCC election will continue to require in-person participation.

People interested in attending the hearings are encouraged to review the questionnaire online prior to the April 8 hearings and should arrive at the hearing location early to register before the hearings begin at 7 p.m. Washington County Spring Hearing is at Kewaskum High School, 661510 Bilgo Ln, Kewaskum, WI

Ozaukee County Spring Hearing is at Ozaukee County Fairgrounds, Ozaukee Pavilion North, W67 N866 Washington Avenue, Cedarburg, WI 53012

Dodge County Spring Hearing is at Horicon Marsh DNR Education and Visitor Center, Auditorium, N7725 Highway 28, Horicon, WI 53032

Fond du Lac County Spring Hearing is at Theisen Middle School, Auditorium, 525 East Pioneer Road, Fond du Lac, WI 54935

Updates & tidbits

 Jack Russell Memorial Library in Hartford is celebrating National Library Week, April 8 – 13. The community library will be offering various swag during the week including tote bags, magnets, and pens.

 -There is a public information meeting Thursday, April 11 for improvements to North Wacker Drive in the City of Hartford. The meeting will be from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. at Hartford City Hall. There will be a presentation at 6 p.m. Hartford is proposing to replace the bridge carrying North Wacker Drive over the Rubicon River. The project is approximately 0.2 miles north of the junction with WIS 60.  The project is currently scheduled for 2020. The roadway will be closed to through traffic during construction.

– Get your tickets today for the Saturday, April 13 Brunch with the Easter Bunny brought to you by the West Bend Kiwanis. The event is from 7 a.m. – 11 a.m. at The Columbian, 3245 Lighthouse Lane in West Bend.

-Come out and help support your local fire department at the Fillmore Fire & Rescue Fish Fry on Friday, April 12 from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.  Tommy Schwai will be manning the fryer.

– Hartford Union High School’s (HUHS) Board of Education announced it hired a new superintendent to start the 2019-2020 school year, Jeffrey A. Walters, Principal, Kettle Moraine High School.

-On Saturday, April 20, 2019 from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., the West Bend Police Department will be selling approximately 70 abandoned bicycles. The bike sale will occur at the West Bend Police Department at 350 Vine Street.

– Tickets go on sale April 21 for the 32nd annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm. It will be held June 21 at Highland Dairy, LLC this year in Kewaskum. Mike, Linda and Corey Enright are set to roll out the red carpet and invite guests to tour the robotic farm, listen to live music and share in some eggs, ham, pancakes and applesauce.

-The Exclusive Company in West Bend, 144 N. Main Street, is hosting its annual Record Store Day on Saturday, April 13.  The event is a week earlier than normal because Easter Sunday is April 21.

– Auto Safety Center, 3700 W. Washington Street, in West Bend is offering a free Car Care Clinic on April 17.  There will be free food and drinks as guests watch master mechanics pass along some simple tips on how to keep your vehicle running smoothly. This clinic will be designed to help teach you the basics of car care. ASE Master technicians from Auto Safety Center will be on hand to answer any question. The clinic will be open to women, men, new drivers, experienced drivers, and even soon-to-be drivers. Please RSVP by calling 262-334-7241.

Cedar Lake Sales to celebrate 50th anniversary

Cedar Lake Sales in West Bend is prepping to celebrate its 50th anniversary. The Bell family hosted an after hours meet and greet and shared tours of its store, 3820 Highway 33.

Brian Bell provided a trip down memory lane with details on how the store got its start as Cedar Lake Simplicity. “Mom and Dad received news they were awarded the Simplicity brand with lawn and garden equipment,” he said.

The Bells started the business at their house where they expanded to chainsaws and snowmobiles.

Details posted on the Cedar Lake Sales web page: In late February of 1969 Don and Eileen incorporated the business and signed a lease to rent a building on Hwy 33, our current location. A franchise agreement was signed with Arctic Cat Snowmobiles and Chrysler Boats and Motors from Hartford, Wisconsin.

Their business began to grow year after year, so in 1972 they doubled the size of the building. With this improvement they sold 350 Arctic Cat snowmobiles in 1972 alone. In 1974, Don and Eileen signed on the Lowe Boat franchise and now had two boat lines to sell.

With business continuing to grow, 1975 meant “acquire as many franchises as you can in one year.” So Cedar Lake Sales added Johnson outboard motors, Forester Boats, Mirrocraft Fishing Boats, Kayot Pontoon Boats and Puma pop up campers. In 1977, the Sylvan Boat franchise signed on the 1978 model year.

Don Bell recalled when he first opened a couple of the fellas including Walter Koehn and Fred Sager sat on an old church pew at the entrance to the store. “They said, Don we wish you well but you ain’t going to last six months out here… you’re in the boondocks,” he said. “That was 50 years ago.”

Alan Bell said over the years Cedar Lake Sales has made a big impact in the number of boat sales and that’s after his Dad got his start by selling snowmobiles. “Since the snowmobile business was incredible.. we then moved to Crestliner boats and we were ranked No. 1 in the world in sales,” he said.

Coming up April 11-13 Cedar Lake Sales is celebrating its 50th milestone with seminars, food, prizes and in-store specials.

 Slinger Man Donates $500 to the Slinger Pantry from hobby-turned business      By Dan Durbin

 Sam Mountjoy, of Slinger, has turned his hobby of making maple syrup into a small side-business this year and the first $500 he made was given to the Slinger Food Pantry last week. “Until this year it was a hobby, and still is really, but I was only making about five gallons a year,” he said.  “Most was given away to family and friends.”

Mountjoy became interested in syrup making when he noticed a friend’s father making it up north.  He immediately started researching the craft.

Last year, Mountjoy, 42, only had eight taps for production, but this year he had 155.  His style of boiling the sap, his storage capacities, and overall operation needed to be drastically changed in order to produce the 30-gallons he hoped to create.

“I did a lot of research and knew I couldn’t justify spending money on commercially-built units and an osmosis system, so I decided to design my own,” he said.  “Once designed, my friend Jason Peeso, helped fabricate the evaporator I used this season.  It really turned out great and has helped my production abilities immensely.”

Thus, “Iggie’s Acre” was born. “I was always outside working on the lawn or cutting firewood,” he said.  “Jason was giving me a hard time one day and called me Farmer Iggie as a joke and the name kinda stuck.”

Mountjoy chose the Slinger Food Pantry for the donation because a few years ago his father was given food by the pantry when he was dealing with cancer.  He eventually passed away from the disease.

The $500 donation came to be when he posted on FACEBOOK that he would be taking offers for three pints of maple syrup and would take the money from the highest bidder and donate it to the pantry.

“It went really well so I offered the top four bidders the same deal and came up with a donation of $445,” he said.  “Besides the 12 pints of maple syrup, Sarah and I then kicked in the extra $55 to get to an even $500.”

“I really don’t do it for the money at all,” he said.  “I just like being outside and working on it and hanging out with my helper, my youngest son Lincoln. Having built the equipment from the ground up even makes it more rewarding.”

Mountjoy does not have a website for purchasing product but he can be contacted on the Iggie’s Acre Facebook page.

Vietnam veteran Allen Polachowski of West Bend on April Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran Allen Polachowski, of West Bend, is heading to Washington D.C. on the April 6 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Polachowski was born in 1944 in Milwaukee. His mother was a secretary for a company in Milwaukee called Vilter Manufacturing, while his father served in the Army during World War II. “My father, Erwin, was serving when I was born,” said Polachowski. “My daughter is an only child as well and she was also born when I was in Vietnam.”

Thankfully, Polachowski’s father made it home safe because he was lucky enough to have served within the U.S.

In 1955, his family left Milwaukee and moved to St. Francis. Polachowski graduated Don Bosco High School in 1963, an all-boys, parochial school. In the early 70’s, Don Bosco High School merged with Pio Nono High School, establishing the current Saint Thomas More High School in Milwaukee.

After graduating high school, Polachowski attended college at UW-Eau Claire to study economics and political science. “It was the furthest from Milwaukee that I could find at the time. I wanted to be, shall we say, footloose and fancy free,” Polachowski said.

The day of his college graduation, in 1968, Polachowski was drafted into the Army. “At the time, there was an active draft, no lottery,” he said. “I had a deferment of an S2, which meant I was a student. 1968 was one of the high points of the war, so they were eager to get anyone they could. Anyone on my block that was a male was drafted.”

Polachowski was able to enroll in UW-Milwaukee to pursue his master’s degree, the draft board allowing him to finish his first semester as long he enlisted in their College Op program. Polachowski said that the advantage of joining the army the way he did gave him the ability to choose which OSC (Officer Candidate School) he wanted to attend. “I selected armor because there wasn’t a lot of armor in Vietnam,” Polachowski chuckled.

Both Polachowski’s Basic Training and AIT (Advanced Individual Training) was completed in Fort Dix, New Jersey. “Obviously the majority of people there knew where they were going after, it was one step away from jungle school or some other form of advanced training,” Polachowski said.

After AIT, Polachowski married his high school sweetheart, Lynda, and was transferred to OCS in Fort Benning, Georgia. “By the time I got done with my basic schooling, armor school had been closed,” he said. “They said too bad, you’re now going to infantry school.”

Polachowski was commissioned in April of 1969, his first duty assignment was a training officer in Fort Jackson, South Carolina, “My wife and I lived in there until November when I signed up for Heavy Mortar Platoon Leader School. At the completion of that, I was sent to Vietnam on December 24, 1969,” Polachowski said.

In Vietnam, Polachowski was assigned to the biggest division, Americal (or 23rd Infantry Division), which was in Chu Lai, “You probably know the division from a guy named Lieutenant Calley, who was responsible for the 1968 My Lai massacre,” said Polachowski. “The division consisted of three brigades. The 11th, which was part of the massacre, I was in the 198th Brigade, which was in the central part of their area of operation, and the final brigade was 196th.”

Polachowski became a rifle platoon leader and was responsible for 36 infantrymen. “The primary objective we did was patrolling, which meant we went from our base camp and would search through an area,” he said. “We would patrol for about three weeks at a time; It was what they called search and destroy. We kept patrolling until we were hit by the enemy, in which case they would reinforce us with a larger unit that would augment us. We also had to defend the engineers who had to clear a road, or if a helicopter went down, we’d have to go out and try to recover the pilot if he was still alive. We also did a lot of ambushing at night.”

Polachowski shared that his platoon would be sent clothes every other week. “The clothes would just rot off your body,” he said. “We didn’t have daily changes of clothes or showers or bathrooms. This one particular time, they shipped us hot food, but the food they sent us was spoiled chicken and everyone in my platoon came down with dysentery.”

Polachowski’s time serving the 198th Brigade in Vietnam lasted a year, ending because he got shot. “After I recuperated, they were going to send me back to the bush, but it just so happened there was a job available; they were looking for an officer who had a college degree,” Polachowski said.

Working in Vietnam in Division Headquarters, Polachowski became Commanding General Briefing Officer. While he was serving, his daughter, Stacy, was born. “I wanted to save my life as much as I could so my last duty assignment in Vietnam was working as an operations officer at the G5 Psyop,” said Polachowski.

December 1970 was his last month of service, leaving Vietnam as a 1st Lieutenant. His daughter was four months old by the time he arrived home. Jobs were scarce during that time, so Polachowski ended up working for Xerox for a few years. In 1971, his family moved to West Bend. In 1976, he entered the Army Reserves, leaving after seven years as a Major. His wife, Lynda, worked in the West Bend School District for 26 years.

Recently, in his spare time, Polachowski gives presentations on Vietnam. “They last about 45 minutes – breaks down what the army was like, how it was organized, the missions, the weaponry, interesting facts….I’ve been giving them to rotary, ladies clubs, schools if they ask,” said Polachowski.

Polachowski’s daughter will be his guardian on the flight. “I’ve was in D.C. before the Vietnam memorials were up,” said Polachowski. “I’m excited to go. Ninety-seven guys were killed in my company and I’d like to see their names and numbers.”

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Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

New Ozaukee Christian School to open in Town of Trenton

There’s a new school for K3 through eighth graders opening in Washington County. Ozaukee Christian School will open in the Town of Trenton, 1204 Highway 33 across from West Bend Lakes Golf Course.

Ozaukee Christian School describes itself as “offering outstanding, Christ-centered, non-denominational educational opportunities for students from K3 to eighth grade. We are dedicated to academic excellence with a uniquely Christian perspective—one that places Jesus at the center of everything we do and acknowledges the Bible as our ultimate authority.”

The school is opening in the former Spearmint Rhino Gentlemen’s Club.

“The unusual building conversion is an answer to prayer that ends a years-long search for a building to call our own,” said Dave Swartz, OCS Board President. “God has given the leadership of OCS a big vision for growth while providing us what we need for each step of this project.”

OCS is a non-denominational Christian school founded in 1990. It has had several homes over the years. It started at Portview Christian Center in Port Washington, then moved to Friedens Church in Port, back to Portview and then to St. John XXIII in Saukville for the last 19 years.

Details released by Ozaukee Christian School: But we have felt God leading us to a building of our own that will allow us to grow, to expand our ability to work with special needs children and to reach families of Washington County.

The property will allow us to do all this and more. We are purchasing a strip mall that we will renovate into classrooms, offices, a cafeteria and a multi-purpose room. Future additions include a gym with stage and locker rooms, and a new classroom wing.

We reached an agreement last week, March 18, 2019  to purchase the property from California-based Spearmint Rhino. We hope to occupy the building in time for the start of the 2019-2020 school year.

We are trusting God to provide the funds for this project, just as He cleared the way for us to buy this building. We have raised $425,000 so far and are seeking a total of 2.2 million to complete the purchase and initial renovation of the property. At this point we have hired a general contractor, and we also have many volunteers planning to assist in the building project. Anyone interested in helping with this work is encouraged to contact us.

“We have felt God leading us to a building of our own that will allow us to grow, to expand our ability to work with special needs children and to reach more families in Washington County, all the while maintaining strong ties with our families in Ozaukee County,” said Kris Austin, OCS Administrator.

How it came to be: Several school leaders became independently aware the property in January 2017, and after visiting the site and felt it could be a great fit. OCS reached out to Spearmint Rhino but were initially told they weren’t interested in selling. In July 2017, however, the company reached out and offered to sell the building.

The price was beyond what OCS was prepared to pay, but nevertheless the board began meeting with architects and contractors about potential designs. “We also launched a fundraising drive in April 2018 so we would be ready when God opened the door for us. In the meantime, we have done prayer walks at the property with staff, parents and alumni. Students regularly gathered to pray for the process. And we had a group of 140 ’email prayer warriors’ doing the same,” said Austin.

“After months of phone conversations, emails and the abundant prayers of God’s people, we were blessed with a signed purchase offer at a price we could handle. We have enjoyed getting to know Mr. Peter Garrell (attorney for Spearmint) and Ms. Joann Castillo (senior executive assistant) over these many months — and praying with them as well. It is a journey unlike anything we could have imagined. It is a story only God could write.”

Anyone desiring to help with the funding of the building project or donating time/talent/materials to the renovation can contact the school through its website, click HERE or by calling the school office at 262.284.6980.

History of Ozaukee Christian Academy courtesy the school website.

Ozaukee Christian School started because a group of parents wanted to make a difference in the lives of their children. They wanted an educational opportunity that offered sound academic, as well as Biblical, instruction. They also understood the importance of the bond between the home, the church, and the school, and wanted an educational environment that embraced this. The momentum behind Ozaukee Christian School began in the late 1980s, after much prayer and hard work, by this group of parents. The doors of the school opened for the first time in August of 1990, with thirteen students in grades K-4.

Today, the school has grown to over 80 students in grades K3-8. We are located in Saukville, the heart of Ozaukee County. OCS students are carrying the experience and education they receive at OCS to high schools and colleges around the country, where they continue to excel academically and serve the Lord in their homes, schools, and churches.

Guest Editorial: Member of CFAC Committee to vote ‘No’ on $74 million total West Bend School Referendum   By Dan Krier

As a long-time resident of the West Bend School district, and an advocate for quality education in West Bend, I need to share my experience in regard to the proposed referendum. I have read and heard so many say it’s for education so we have to vote for it.

If it were about education I could vote for it, but it isn’t. It is about buildings, and more specifically the maintenance of and lack of planning in regard to the buildings. And, the fact that some just want a new school to provide the fancy alternative work spaces that Bray Architectural Firm is flashing before them. We had an alternative learning program in our charter school and we chose not to fund that. Yet we want to push for the alternative space, which is what the new school is really about. Is our school district in the business of buildings, or is it education. I would choose spending on education. I went to a school built in the 1800s and when I entered West Bend East HS I was ahead of most of my class. The building certainly didn’t deter from my education.

I have been very active in getting information in regard to this referendum as I was on the Citizen Facilities Advisory Committee (CFAC). I believe this referendum will do more damage to the district than good. I was at the city council meeting when superintendent Kirkegaard presented the plan. Many of the Aldermen were concerned with the level of debt this would levy on the district. They know the city was strapped for several years under massive debt. And it was only when they got the debt under control they are able to now repair the roads that so desperately need it. They and I know that this debt will strap the district just as it did the city. The approximate $105 million of debt would dwarf that of the entire city of West Bend.

Besides the debt issue, at least one alderman had issue with the presentation stressing need. He said to Kirkegaard that while you claim you are not dictating which way to vote, it certainly sounds as if you are. Yes it was definitely a sell job as I was at several of the presentations.

This district continues to be dishonest with the citizens. And while many support the decisions, I wonder how many wouldn’t, if they knew just how dishonest this process has been and the truth behind the spending. The level of dishonesty is to the point where the lack of credible planning to address objective issues, is a detriment to the district. Even many of the School Board members either don’t know enough to realize it, or are just taking an administrators word. Some said these fixes will prevent spending on maintenance in the future. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. Many of the real issues have not even been addressed when instead we are fulfilling someone’s wish list. Poor planning got us to where we are today, just as the current lack of credible planning will have the district back at the table for more money in the near future. Yes another referendum in just a few short years.

Back to CFAC. We took tours of both Jackson and the high school during the first couple meetings of the CFAC. The committee was supposedly assembled to address the objective needs. But on the 4th meeting Bray presented a list of needs to the committee including 113 items from Jackson and 76 From the HS most of which we never even discussed. Objective needs like “dated doors.” Not worn, rusted or unusable, but dated. When questioning where they came from, there was a lot of uncertainty and the Bray representative finally even admitted that we were not there for what we were told. We were there because the 25 year plan said Jackson and the HS are the items to address next, and we were gathered to decide on how to sell it to you the people.

That was not the first but certainly the most telling statement, that the district has no intention of being honest with its citizens. The committee ended up not having all of the meetings we were supposed to and was never even allow to report to the school board. Apparently they did not care what we had to say. We were just window dressing.

I can assure you, that while the district led you to believe the CFAC committee’s findings led to the adoption of the questions in the survey, it was absolutely not the case. And the survey report was definitely insulated from all of the real issues addressed in the survey. This whole process is sleazy.

Think about this, why would the district hire an architectural firm to run meetings to tell the district if we should spend more money with them. In what business model is that acceptable? There are many resources in the community that would be happy to give their time to help with the real issues. I have talked to many of them. That would also open it up to a trusting relationship and gain community buy in and support.

As far as the conditions of the buildings, let me first say that the person in charge of maintenance at the HS is doing a phenomenal job. I just wish his boss that oversees the district was as good. The mechanical that they say has outlived its life is in good condition. Yes we could certainly do some updating of controllers and such, but the general condition is decent. Even many of the committee members didn’t see the concerns the administration seems to have. The restructuring of the offices is definitely something that was planned poorly in the past. Who would put these separate school offices in the middle of the building away from the main entrances? While security wasn’t as crucial when that was done, it was certainly a factor.

The other main issue at the HS is the updating of the STEM area. There have been many opportunities over the years to update that area and some of the administrators and even teachers turned the money and assistance away. Looking beyond past mistakes, The real needs within the HS certainly wouldn’t come near $25.5 million. Keep in mind we are not getting any additional space, just re-purposed space for that large sum.

In Jackson, only the oldest portion of the school really needs to be addressed. Most of the school is in good condition. Yes it can use some updates but is certainly workable. Once again my biggest concern was with some of the poor quality planning and work of the past. The main electrical room has giant sump pumps in it. And they are positioned in a way that if you did that at your house it would be illegal. I cannot understand how this work could have been allow by inspectors or anyone within the district that knows code. Much of Jackson could be efficiently and effectively reworked. But none of that was seriously looked at. They just want a new school.

The main reasons were the extra alternative space which I already mentioned. And the others were due to traffic situations and a landlocked parcel that was too small. But now they want to build a bigger school while enrollment is declining. They are building on a landlocked parcel that is smaller than recommended for an elementary school. That lot is also chopped up with a residential property in the middle and utility access on the south side. And it is by the Rec. Center where there is already somewhat of a traffic issue. If we truly need to build a new school, can we not plan better than that? Moving to the same issues we trying to move away from?

Once again to spend the kind of money we are spending, without the real sincere planning needed to accomplish any specific and objective goals, is irresponsible. I have heard several say they need this money because they don’t have enough for maintenance. Yet we constantly see waste. We spent $300,000 to push out a superintendent someone didn’t like. We spend hundreds of thousands on non-essential issues that should wait behind the needed maintenance. And we often don’t hold contractors accountable for their work. Why should the district pay extra for contractors mistakes.

I will be voting NO to hopefully send the board and administrators back to the drawing board with the intent of coming back with objective goals and real needs for the betterment of education for this district.

Dan Krier

Stop sign swap at Eighth Avenue and Walnut Street in West Bend

Motorists in West Bend who travel Eighth Avenue and Walnut Street should pay attention to a switcheroo with stop signs. Motorists traveling east and west on Walnut Street used to have to come to a complete stop at Eighth Avenue.

This week the city changed the signs and now motorists traveling north and south on Eighth Avenue have to come to a complete stop at Walnut Street. The change at the intersection was discussed and approved at the January 22, 2019 Safety Committee meeting. The committee approved removing the stop signs on Walnut at Eighth Avenue and adding stop signs on Eighth Avenue at Walnut. In an effort to flag motorists the stop signs have red blinking lights around the perimeter of the octagon.

Date change for Record Store Day

The Exclusive Company in West Bend, 144 N. Main Street, is hosting its annual Record Store Day on Saturday, April 13. The event is a week earlier than normal because Easter Sunday is April 21. Jesse Averill, manager at the West Bend Exclusive Company, said the day will include sales, free food and live music as the store celebrates its independence.

The Exclusive Company opens for 12 hours of sales from 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Holy Angels Rummage Sale is this weekend            By Mike Sternig

Don’t forget the Holy Angels Rummage Sale is this weekend. Doors open Saturday, March 30 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Sunday, March 31 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.  This event not only helps raise funds for Holy Angels School, but it also connects the school with the greater community by offering much needed items at low prices. Each year the Holy Angels rummage sale draws families from West Bend but also Milwaukee and surrounding areas. This is also a great opportunity for high school students who need service hours. Many thanks to all for helping to support our school’s mission.

Flagpole parade in Barton-effort underway to name Edward F. Groth Memorial Park

There’s a bit going on behind the scenes in Barton. Early Monday morning, with temperatures a crisp 34 degrees, a small crew including Jeff Slais from Wisconsin House Woodworks, Dan Vrana from Vrana Body Shop and Michael Kohnke from Commonwealth Construction Corp. worked to save history.

Slais led the effort to recycle the flagpole that formerly sat in the yard at Barton Elementary School.  “We’re planning on adding it to Overlook Park on N. Main Street,” he said.

With the help of Kohnke who manned a forklift the flagpole was set on a trailer followed by the red rocket jungle gym.

Slais said the flagpole is being moved to the park overlooking Barton Pond. “We’re going to leave all the battle scars on it and put it back up,” said Slais.  The flagpole dates to around 1960. Salvaging the pole saved the Barton Association about $4,200.

On Thursday, representatives from Barton Business Association went before the West Bend Park & Rec Commission to request permission that the bluff at 1305 N. Main Street be named Edward F. Groth Memorial Park.

West Bend Park & Rec Commission to review policy regarding dogs on the Riverwalk

The West Bend Park & Rec Commission reviewed a resolution Thursday, March 28 regarding a policy to allow dogs on the Riverwalk.

Dogs shall be allowed in the following parks, or the designated area within a park, but shall be restrained by a leash with a length of six feet or less. (1) Ridge Run Park- entire park (2) Glacier Blue Hills Recreation Area- Ice Age Trail only (3) West Bend Riverwalk- Sidewalk/Trail portion only (4) Old Settlers Park- entire park (5) Vest Pocket Park- Sidewalk portion only.

In December 2018 a request was made to allow dogs in the parks. Police Chief Meuler stated his department would be in favor of a policy in which dogs are allowed on the entire stretch of the Riverwalk, on trails only, and that this policy be extended across to the west side of the river, and through sidewalks of Vest Pocket Park and Old Settlers Park.

Commissioners present were also in favor of allowing dogs on a six-foot leash, on the marked trails, through the entire length of the Riverwalk, with installation of ample signage. Policy will also need to be approved by the Common Council on April 15. Policy should be in place for summer of 2019.

The West Bend Milwaukee Riverfront Parkway currently runs a continuous 3.1 miles along the Milwaukee River, beginning at River Road and extending northwest to Roosevelt Drive.

Check out The Gym WB opening in West Bend

 A neighborly welcome to The Gym WB, 820 S. Main Street, opening soon on the north end of the West Bend Plaza. The Gym WB is a partnership business. Nathan and Meghan Mueller are co-owners along with Ray Vazquez, MikenAbbe Somerhalder and Jackie Michaels. “This is going to be more of a kettlebell gym,” said Nathan.

The Gym WB is still a work in progress as equipment is being brought in and set up. This is a new business for the West Bend area run by people who live in the community. There will be a soft opening of the business in mid-April and a grand opening in May.

District 2 aldermanic candidates in West Bend appear at Common Sense Citizens

 Two candidates running for District 2 alderman in West Bend, Mike Christian and Mark Allen, spoke before Common Sense Citizens of Washington County this week.

Incumbent Mike Christian – Downtown area in West Bend is what makesup the district. Love participating in public service and have time and energy. Lived in West Bend since 1990. Started at a restaurant. Took job at Jeff’s Spirits on Main and volunteered with Washington County Youth Hockey, Washington County Humane Society and History Center of Washington County Board of Directors. Event planning and community relations. Most recently Christian started a music festival at Regner Park – Homegrown Music Festival. Now it’s in its fifth year. “When you’re passionate about your community you get a buy in from the community. I represent my community well. In one year, I was appointed alderman, when Steve Hutchins left and in that time I’ve taken hundreds of phone calls and emails.

“My mission is to listen to the issue at hand. Talking through issues with people is one thing I’m good at and not projecting an opinion but figuring out a solution.  It’s what makes sense for the whole. I am happy to gain your support for Dist. 2 alderman.

Mark Allen is also vying for Dist. 2 alderman in West Bend – After high school started career for 12.5 years at U.S. Coast Guard. Enlisted. Left service and moved into private sector and filled six jobs. Lived in West Bend since 1998. “Learned in Coast Guard is importance of following, leading and being part of a team. I will bring that to the position if elected.  My priorities are public safety, maintenance and training,” said Allen.

Need excellence in police and fire departments. Important to do maintenance and focus on infrastructure including potholes. We need to come up with a program for this. If elected I propose an easy streamline method for community to report with possible hotline. Propose stop new construction on roads without safety issue until we get 90% of potholes filled. Look at public private partnership.  Entire professional life worked in engineering including computers and electrical and mechanical engineering, civil engineering with bridges and tunnels. I’ve learned how to solve problems and approach it in a rational manner.  I’m a big believer in taking tax resources and making use of them effectively.

Spring election is April 2, 2019. Polls are open from 7 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Candidate forum at Common Sense Citizens – Town of West Bend Supervisor race

Two candidates on the April 2 ballot vying for the No. 2 Supervisor seat in the Town of West Bend participated Thursday night in a candidate forum at Common Sense Citizens of Washington County. Incumbent Frank Carr spoke first followed by Troy Zagel.

Frank Carr – supervisor Town of West Bend (I) – Has lived in the Town of West Bend since 2008. Two family places on Big Cedar Lake for 60 years. Familiar with the area. Serenity for Big Cedar Lake has been pleasant and spurred his following of conservation issues to preserve rural character of town. Experience and knowledge matter in this race. Town of WB Supervisor appointed to Town of WB Plan Commission and part of Big Cedar Lake Protection and Rehabilitation District. As Washington Co. Supervisor Carr is on Human Services committee, ADRC, Little Cedar Lake PRD and Silver Lake PRD. Active volunteer in community with History Center of Washington County, Richfield Historical Society, Washington County Visitor and Convention Bureau. Canvassing in the town and meeting people and has a lot of endorsements from all people he’s worked with. West Bend is a lake county sanctuary and given the experience and ability I’m best candidate.

Troy Zagel – running for Town of WB – Supervisor seat No. 2 – Wife Penny and daughter live in Town of West Bend. Third generation resident. Motivation to run came after leaving Town of WB meetings. Wants to maintain quality of life. Common sense approach to government. Fiscal responsibility and conservative ideals. My commitment to involvement in community is lifelong. Over 30 years working with budgets. Donate time to church and other local organizations. Self-funded campaign. Vote Brian Hagedorn and Troy Zagel.

Polls open for the Tuesday, April 2 election at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m.

Weasler Engineering honored by Department of Defense for supporting employee who serves in USA Army Reserve | By Bonnie Shudarek

Tammy Riebe of Weasler Engineering has been awarded a Patriot Award presented by Kenneth J. Schuetz of the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR). Tammy was recognized for her continuing support of one of our own employees currently serving in the USA Army Reserve.  Sergeant Corrine Miller is a member of the Army Reserve 826th Ordnance Corps Madison and has nominated Weasler Engineering because of their support for military employees and their families. We thank you Corrine for your service to our country and your ongoing dedication to Weasler Engineering.

Dodge Co. Airport receives government funding for project

Governor Tony Evers approved funding totaling $82,000 to acquire an aviation easement at the Dodge County Airport, in Juneau, to help protect the airport’s airspace. According to Lucas Ward, P.E., airport development engineer with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) Bureau of Aeronautics, the easement allows for the trimming and clearing of trees which are presently an obstruction to the runways.

Funds from the state, Dodge County and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will be used for this project.  Funding Breakdown   State = $4,100  Dodge County = $4,100   FAA = $73,800

This project is currently scheduled to be completed by April 2019. Airport improvement projects are administered through the WisDOT Bureau of Aeronautics.

Dodge County Airport is one of 97 facilities included in the Wisconsin State Airport System Plan, which makes it eligible for state and federal funding.

Updates & tidbits

–  On Monday, April 1 at 10:08 a.m., Aurora Medical Center in Hartford, 1302 Sumner St., will host a flag-raising ceremony to raise awareness on the importance of organ donation.

– On Wednesday, April 3, 2019, a meteorologist from the National Weather Service (NWS) will conduct Severe Weather Safety and Spotter Training in the Gathering Hall at the Jackson Area Community Center, N165W20330 Hickory Lane. Two identical sessions will be held from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. and an evening session from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

-Come out and help support your local fire department at the Fillmore Fire & Rescue Fish Fry on Friday, April 12 from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

-On Saturday, April 20, 2019 from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., the West Bend Police Department will be selling approximately 70 abandoned bicycles. The bike sale will occur at the West Bend Police Department at 350 Vine Street.

– Tickets go on sale April 21 for the 32nd annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm. It will be held June 21 at Highland Dairy, LLC this year in Kewaskum. Mike, Linda and Corey Enright are set to roll out the red carpet and invite guests to tour the robotic farm, listen to live music and share in some eggs, ham, pancakes and applesauce.

-There is a public information meeting Thursday, April 11 for improvements to North Wacker Drive in the City of Hartford. The meeting will be from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. at Hartford City Hall. There will be a presentation at 6 p.m. Hartford is proposing to replace the bridge carrying North Wacker Drive over the Rubicon River. The project is approximately 0.2 miles north of the junction with WIS 60.  The project is currently scheduled for 2020. The roadway will be closed to through traffic during construction.

– Get your tickets today for the Saturday, April 13 Brunch with the Easter Bunny brought to you by the West Bend Kiwanis. The event is from 7 a.m. – 11 a.m. at The Columbian, 3245 Lighthouse Lane in West Bend.

-The 2019 ArtWalk Sneak Peek Party at the Museum of Wisconsin Art. Get an up-close look at the 2019 hand painted banners by local artists before they are displayed on light poles in downtown West Bend.

– Auto Safety Center, 3700 W. Washington Street, in West Bend is offering a free Car Care Clinic on April 17.  There will be free food and drinks as guests watch master mechanics pass along some simple tips on how to keep your vehicle running smoothly. This clinic will be designed to help teach you the basics of car care. ASE Master technicians from Auto Safety Center will be on hand to answer any question. The clinic will be open to women, men, new drivers, experienced drivers, and even soon-to-be drivers. Please RSVP by calling 262-334-7241.

-Mike Darrow, President and Chief Operating Officer of the Russ Darrow Group, has been elected chairman of the Wisconsin Automobile & Truck Dealers Association (WATDA) for 2019.

Letters to the Editor | Vote ‘No’ on the total $74 million West Bend School District referendum | By Dave Weigand

Dear Editor,  I am voting NO to the $74 million-plus (including the interest costs) West Bend School District (WBSD) referendum on April 2. I ask all District residents to join me.

I served on the WBSD School Board 2010-2013. We unanimously passed Policy 615, which states in an indisputable manner in its last paragraph, “any additional communication (e.g., mailed materials to District residents, …) … must continue to disclose” the principal amount, total interest cost, total dollar amount (i.e., $74,037,838), and all major assumptions and factors.

The District deliberately violated this policy by only including the principal cost in its half-page postal card mailed to all District residents and received by us on March 22. What were they trying to hide?

Few may be aware the payback for this referendum is stretched out over 19 years. This is not a financially responsible decision. Most likely the building will need significant maintenance before it is even paid for. From where will that money come?

I will be voting NO to the referendum. The WBSD has not been good stewards of our public tax dollars; they have been the opposite.

No genuine effort was made to fix Jackson Elementary and/or update the oldest parts. Instead, the District deliberately let it run down by putting little, if any, maintenance into it the last several years to try to force taxpayers to approve this overpriced referendum. Now with declining enrollment district-wide and at Jackson in particular, WBSD wants us to pay for an extravagantly huge new school that is literally more than twice the size needed based on the District’s own cited Value of Good Design document from just 11 years ago.

Enough is enough. Please join me in voting NO to this irresponsible, unaffordable, and wasteful referendum. Thank you.

Most sincerely,  Dave Weigand

Letters to the Editor | Vote Judge Brian Hagedorn for State Supreme Court | By Rev. Joseph Fisher

To the Editor: I am writing because I am a pastor who teaches the Ten Commandments to young and old and this State Supreme Court race has troubled me because the breaking of the Eighth Commandment has reached new heights.  Just the refresh, the Eighth Commandment is You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.  Luther’s Small Catechism explains this What does this mean?  We should fear and love God so that we do not tell lies about our neighbor, betray him, slander him, or hurt his reputation, but defend him, speak well of him, and explain everything in the kindest way.[1] And I know I haven’t jumped into every political race in the past, but this race for the Court has reached some troubling lows.  As the attacks appear to be saying that anyone who is a conservative Christian should not be allowed to run for office, and that is truly troubling.  I will not dare to tell you who to vote for that is on your conscience.  I do encourage you to vote on or before April 2.

This response is to a series of articles published in the West Bend Daily News, in the commentary section calling into questions the suitability of Judge Brian Hagedorn because of his personal beliefs based on his conservative Christian views.  The commentary has continually promoted a false narrative that has been contrived by the “progressive left” to attempt to paint Judge Hagedorn as a hateful bigot who will possibly seek to discriminate against LGBTQ groups.  Yet, this view is not supported by facts but rather by statements being taken out of context or the worse possible meaning being applied.  Which at best is unintentionally misleading or a blatant smear campaign by those who desire to legislate from the bench rather than interpret the law.  In less than an hour of research, I was able to refute the claims made in the ads and “news” articles.

In the commentary published on March 23rd, 2019, in the West Bend Daily News, there were no rulings by Judge Hagedorn called into question.  No cases where he let his personal religious beliefs trump the law.  Not one ruling called into question his ethics or suitability for office.

Fact:  Judge Brian Hagedorn, is a current Wisconsin Court of Appeals judge and former legal counsel for Scott Walker.

Fact:  Judge Hagedorn “discriminatory” blog post is part of a summary of a dissent made by the late Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia.  The dissent was on a case about Texas sodomy laws, in which Scalia’s dissent was attempting to point out that by striking down a law against sodomy claiming states are constitutionally forbidden from banning any sexual activity citizens consider “immoral and unacceptable” also eliminates the legal basis for “criminal laws against fornication, bigamy, adultery, adult incest, bestiality, and obscenity.”  Hagedorn simply was paraphrasing Scalia’s concerns.  In fact, Scalia went on to encourage LGBTQ groups to persuade their fellow citizens that sodomy bans were wrong and work to change the laws rather than seeking to eliminate the legal basis on which states criminalize socially disapproved sexual behaviors.

While the progressive media and campaign ads run against Hagedorn have claimed he supports “hate groups” it is based on the Southern Poverty Law Center labeling the Alliance Defending Freedom as a “hate group”.  This is the organization that helped defend the Colorado cake baker and seems to be part of the basis on which the Alliance is called a hate group.  This is itself an unfair and biased claim.

Hagedorn religious’ beliefs are most definitely being attacked.  Yet, to this date, I have not seen any proof that Hagedorn’s beliefs have clouded his judgments in any case before him. We must remember that the United State Constitution states in article six, “no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States”.

Finally, to the question of the Christian school he and his wife help start and still support.  This school and the teachers and students are being smeared as some horrible LGBTQ hating organization.  When in fact it is a conservative Christian School that has a standard for sexual ethics for both heterosexual and homosexual staff that requires in the school’s conduct code forbidding “teachers from participating in immoral sexual activity (defined as any form of touching or nudity for the purpose of evoking sexual arousal apart from the context of marriage between one man and one woman).”

This is not “hate speech” or bigotry, it is simply a conservative religious conviction.  And yes, this is protected by the Constitution.  So, please stop the smears, we the people of Wisconsin deserve better.

Rev. Joseph Fisher

[1] Luther. (2017). Luther’s Small Catechism with Explanation (p. 110). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.

Letters to the Editor | Vote ‘No’ on the $74 million total referendum | By Jim Geldreich

Dear Editor: School referenda are reaching an epidemic level in Wisconsin including here in Washington County.  Local referenda saddle modest sized school districts such as ours with overwhelming debt, which translates to billions in new debt statewide.  This is not a sustainable trend, and brings me to the current $74 million West Bend school referendum, the third referendum imposed upon taxpayers in the past ten years!

Not only is this an obscene and outrageous amount of new borrowing, it is being proposed during a period of declining enrollment.

When added to the other two referenda in 2009 and 2012, it totals $103 million in total debt (source: WB District website).  This is 1/3 of the taxpayer portion for the construction of Miller Park ($310 Million), which took five heavily populated counties 24 years to repay!

The latest piece of mailed literature I received from the district doesn’t reveal the total amount of the borrowing ($74 million), thereby being neither forthright nor transparent with the constituents of the district.  I recall attending a candidate forum a couple years ago where the candidates (now members of the current board) all tripped over themselves proclaiming how transparent they would be if elected.

According to Policy 615 Disclosure of Financing and Total Cost of All Referenda document on the WB School District website, any information distributed on a proposed referendum must disclose the total amount of the referendum including principal, interest and associated costs.  This aforementioned mailed literature is in clear violation of this disclosure policy voted upon and approved by the West Bend School Board on January 23, 2012.

Additionally, some current school board members have been publicly cheerleading for the referendum, which is arguably inappropriate.

I urge the voters of the district to vote “No” on the current school referendum.

Jim Geldreich

Town of West Bend

Disclaimer: Opinions and letters published in are not necessarily the views of the Editor, or Publisher.

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Guest Editorial | Lack of transparency in total $74 million West Bend School District referendum | By Carol Heger

Dear Editor: I will be voting “No” on April 2 on the total $74 million West Bend School District referendum.  The WBSD referendum is being forced on West Bend citizens by the school district and its school board.  They have been waging a less than transparent campaign with less than honest facts for several years now.

Item 1:  The Superintendent, Don Kirkegaard, does not like to mention that the referendum will cost taxpayers $74 million (which is a figure that includes estimated interest over the course of 19 years).  He prefers to mention only the amount that the district will be borrowing:  $47 million.  How can a referendum be discussed honestly if the Superintendent doesn’t want to share that there will be about $27 million that the community will owe as a result of interest payments?  By the way, the community – your tax money – is still paying on the two previous school referendums:  a total of $34 million won’t be paid off for 9 more years (until 2028).

Item 2:  The Superintendent is refusing to talk about the fact that the number of children in West Bend/Jackson, as well as in Wisconsin, has been declining drastically for about a decade.   He says that the referendum is not about “capacity.”  In fact, the low birth rate is historic, and projections state West Bend will lose another 500 students by 2024.  Reasons are many for the dramatic decline in enrollment, in addition to the birth rate, such as the rise of parental choice schools (like Good Shepherd and Kettle Moraine Lutheran), an increase in home schooling, open enrollment where many students attend districts like Slinger and Germantown, virtual schools/online learning, and the liberal ideology of our public schools.  Riveredge Nature Center is even opening a charter school.  By 2024, five years from now, I suspect there will be disappearing students and idle classrooms at Jackson and other West Bend schools, and as a result there will be less tax dollars coming into the WBSD coffers. (State funding is based on the number of pupils in a district.)  Less income means staffing cuts and not enough money to maintain (and continue paying for) the gleaming new edifice that is to be built south of Rt. 60.

Item 3:  The Superintendent did not answer questions from the audience at the large informational meetings held at Jackson and the high schools. He referred the audience to “experts” stationed at tables at the rear of the room, a convenient way to prevent audience members from learning the “rest of the story” by listening to each other’s questions.  Just another tactic to keep the playing field uneven for the taxpayers.

Item 4:  The Citizens Facilities Advisory Committee (CFAC) that met during the 2017-18 school year was used as a prop to justify the “needs” of Jackson Elementary and the high schools.  First, many of its members were WBSD employees, retired employees, or their family members.  The majority of committee members nodded and agreed when the architects led the discussions and created the list of “needs.”  The natural gas pipeline that is adjacent to the site of the new Jackson School was obviously not a safety concern of the majority of CFAC members or with the architects.  Bray Architects is the same firm that will get the contract to build the new school at Jackson and the renovations at the high schools.  Believe it or not, CFAC was not even given a chance to present a final report of its findings, although the committee was initially told it would make recommendations regarding the district’s needs.  Yet the referendum survey created by School Perceptions last summer stated that not Bray, but CFAC “developed the options explored in this survey.”  If the referendum wins, I predict there will be a tall, energy-inefficient lobby or atrium that will be built at the new Jackson School, designed by Bray Architects but paid for by the taxpayers.  (Check out Bray’s 2-story open, window-filled space at Kewaskum Middle School that is furnished on two levels with sofas & chairs.  How much learning is being done there?)

Item 5:  Jackson Elementary has been presented on tours as a dungeon-like building, while in contrast it’s a warm, welcoming facility with classroom cabinetry and furniture in good shape and classic style.  Many of the “needs” that were tallied by the architects were maintenance items that had been deferred over the years (replacing ceiling tiles, new urinals, etc.).  Replacing Jackson’s roof is listed on the referendum flyer as a “need,” but CFAC members learned from the WBSD Facilities and Operations Manager that roofing is always included in the operating budget, and each summer a different roof or several are replaced totaling $800,000 per year.  Why then is Jackson’s roof used as a referendum need? At its peak, Jackson held about 525 students compared to the current 350 that are pupils.  Moving the fifth graders to Silverbrook about five years ago freed up four classrooms.  The current building, larger than needed, could be re-configured and consolidated to take advantage of that extra space.  It wouldn’t surprise me if the old 1900 portion might not even be needed, thereby eliminating the use of steps and an elevator.

There are many questions that have not been adequately answered about remodeling the current Jackson, including the cost.  Does anyone know what it would cost to remodel or simply upgrade Jackson Elementary?  Certainly, the Superintendent must know as do the school board members, but no one’s telling the taxpayers.    At a school board work session on April 30, 2018, a board member stated that he thought it was a waste of money to investigate what it cost to close Jackson and build new.  He thought spending money on boilers and air conditioners (i.e., maintenance upgrades) was not worthwhile.  The referendum plan calls for a new building at a price tag of $24,400,000 (not including 19 years of interest).  And the number of students is continuing to decline annually.

Item 6:  The twin high schools’ 50-year-old “major building system components,” as described on the referendum flyer, have “exceeded their useful life” and “are in need of replacement.”  After the CFAC behind-the-scenes tour, positive comments were made by committee members that it was “a clean and solid plant” and “well-maintained” and “a sense of pride” was evident.  Older equipment with a good operator is sometimes better than new equipment, a member suggested.  “Newer isn’t always better” was added by another member, while other members recalled that a new storage tank installed at the new Badger Middle School had ruptured.  (CFAC meeting, Oct. 17, 2017)

Commentators have weighed in, stating that the desire of Wisconsin voters for “world class” programs and facilities is apparent, since 90% of 82 communities in 2018 voted in favor of school referendums.  (Daily News, March 6, 2019)  Of course, does that mean that the West Bend population of lemmings should jump off the tax-and-spend cliff because others have?

The three candidates for the school board have finally been identified and appear to be following in quick step behind the previous trio of self-described “fiscally conservative” board members who were elected a couple years ago.  One candidate has stated the WBSD “has worked hard to carefully steward the money given for the upkeep of the buildings.” (Daily News, March 9, 2019)  He obviously has slept through the last year or so when the school board rewarded all teachers with a $1 million raise across the board, not taking into account any merit, innovation, or awards, something that is allowed due to Act 10 (see below).  The school board also presented the last two superintendents with hefty salary increases above each previous administrator:  Erik Olsen was awarded a higher salary than Ted Neitzke before him, and Mr. Kirkegaard was given $20,000 more than Mr. Olsen.  This is particularly disrespectful to taxpayers since the school board also voted to pay Mr. Olsen $300,000 so that he would resign from his position.  Yes, he received $300,000 for not working for our schools and our children!  In addition, usually when an employee moves to take a new position, their benefits include moving costs.  Do you think that the school board will let us know how much they paid for Mr. Kirkegaard to move from South Dakota to southeastern Wisconsin?  Let’s not forget that $360,000 was appropriated to re-pave the high schools’ tennis courts last summer, when the school board knew that they would be headed to a referendum.  And the school board even spent $16,500 of tax money on a referendum survey designed to persuade taxpayers to vote “Yes” on this same referendum!  So how conservative has our school board been, how careful have they been to “steward” the tax money provided by its hard-working residents?

Another candidate for the school board states “there is no reasonable alternative” if the referendum fails. (Daily News, March 9, 2019)   She obviously wasn’t paying attention to the teachers protesting in our state capitol building when Act 10 was passed.  Act 10 provides the tools for school districts to create savings without taxing their residents. The largest portion of a school district budget involves salaries and benefits.  Prior to Act 10, teachers and other state employees paid no share of their health insurance premiums.  Their health insurance was free. (I don’t have enough space to talk about their lack of pension contributions as well.)  Act 10 gave districts the ability to negotiate with health insurers other than the WEA Trust (run by teachers), so that employees would pay at least some share of their health insurance, as is done in the private sector and even by federal employees.  But West Bend has not availed itself of the hundreds of thousands of dollars it could save from using cost-effective insurers.  Since Act 10, which dates to 2011, WBSD teachers are paying as little as 3% for their share of health premiums and taxpayers pick up the remaining 97%!  Compare this 3% share with the state average of almost 12%.  Most people who work in the private sector pay about 33% of the cost of their health insurance.  (Boots & Sabers, July 25, 2018)  The resulting savings could go towards operating, maintaining and improving all the schools in West Bend/Jackson.  There would be no need to close schools, as yet another school board candidate has threatened, if the referendum fails. (Daily News, March 9, 2019)  The school district could also wait for Gov. Evers’ promised $1.5 billion in state aid to schools. (Washington Post, Nov. 1, 2018)

By the way, don’t be fooled by another threat heard from these school candidates: that the safety of our students will be in question if the referendum fails.  The WBSD has already received something like $350,000 for upgrading the security of our schools; this is a state grant and is separate from the money requested by the referendum for security upgrades at Jackson and the high schools.

Finally, Jackson student test scores consistently rank among the highest in the district, second only to McLane among elementary schools.  Both Jackson and McLane are the oldest buildings in the district.  Although the school board has plenty to say about the age of Jackson, it can’t list any educational needs that the school lacks.  In general, some of the best test results come from older buildings and low-funded schools.  The amount of money spent on education has no relationship with educational outcome.  As mentioned, the largest portion of a district’s budget is spent on personnel.  How does paying more for benefits such as expensive health insurance improve the education of our children?  Why one district is “better” than another is not because of its fancy buildings or the amount of tax monies spent on a referendum.  Spending a fortune on upgrading facilities means nothing when it comes to learning.

One last point:  Jackson Elementary – students, faculty, and parents — recently raised about $10,000 to buy books for their library.  The great success of this effort suggests that maybe WBSD should contract with the Jackson students to raise money to pay for the “needs” of their own school.  Obviously, the high school tennis courts were more important to the school board than funding the Jackson library with new books or upgrading the school’s physical plant.

Let’s hold the line on out-of-control spending by this current school board.  Do you want to be stuck holding the bill for 20 years of referendum payments?  Vote “No” on Tues. April 2!

Sincerely, Carol Heger

Disclaimer: Opinions and letters published in are not necessarily the views of the Editor, or Publisher.

 New traffic lights by Fleet Farm on Highway 33 and Shepherds Drive

 Business owners on the west end of Highway 33 have received an update regarding plans to add turn lanes and a traffic signal at the intersection of STH 33 and Shepherds Drive. Details were released in a one-page letter along with photos outlining the plans, which also include median modifications and closure of a median.

Construction on the new 192,000-square-foot store began Nov. 12, 2018. Motorists can see development is well underway just south of Highway 33 and just east of CTH Z.

A portion of the letter to property owners reads: Dear Sir or Madam: I am writing this letter as a representative of R.A. Smith Inc., the civil engineering firm retained by Fleet Farm for the design of their new West Bend retail store site development plans and associated STH 33 road improvement plans.

Road construction is planned to commence March 2019, with an estimated duration lasting 8 months (until October 2019). The scope of general planned modifications consists of the addition of turn lanes into the Fleet Farm site, median closures and median modifications, utility installation, street lighting and road signing. Additionally, traffic signals are to be installed at the intersection of STH 33 and Shepherds Drive. Traffic control measures will be in place throughout the duration of the project, which will allow the state highway to remain open throughout construction.  The new Fleet Farm is expected to open September 2019.

Articles about Honor Flight Veterans appreciated                                 Tanya Burg

Thanks for all the healing you are helping to facilitate.  So many of these veterans, especially the Vietnam ones, don’t even realize the healing they need.

Back in October I had a personal reflection regarding the Honor Flight experience. I still feel a stab in my heart thinking back to the morning of my Dad’s Honor Flight.

We stayed by his sister & brother-in-law and they were driving us in the dark morning hours to the airport. Dad and I were in the backseat and he looked over to me and asked quietly, “So all these people at the airport will know I was in Vietnam?”

I responded yes, since the Honor Flight color codes your jackets, the pale blue signifies Vietnam.  He was very serious, which is not his demeanor typically, and after a short time thinking about it he looked back at me and said, “Just so you know, they are going to say really nasty things to me that you shouldn’t hear.”

He truly still thought that was going to be the experience and was trying to shield me from it.  I just took his hand and said, “Not today, Dad, not this time.”

When we landed and got off to the first round of people smiling and reaching out to thank dad and shake his hand, he only made it a few people in and had to move away.

He turned back to me with tears in his eyes and fighting so hard to keep composure said, “No one has ever thanked me before.”

I’ve never been so humbled and ashamed.

Wittenberger Bus was generous upon asking and donated a bus to take Dad’s family (he is the youngest of 11) and friends from the Rubicon area to the Homecoming in Milwaukee, unbeknownst to him.

Toward the end of the incredible walk of celebration home at the end of a truly life changing day – from “hosing down of the plane honor” (I can’t remember the correct name for that), through the heartfelt silent salute from what had to be hundreds of kind eyes that shared my tears, to the boy scout gifting, the grand gala of a booming patriotic band, to the Marilyn Monroe greeting kiss, vets and loved ones flanking the isles … he saw his family waiting and waving for him toward the end.

Stars and stripes caught his expression as he realized the depth of who was there, through their amazing attention to every detail.

My dad was able to be welcomed home, 50 years later, in a way that was so deserved but wasn’t possible the first time – when one sister picked him up after officers’ spit on his shoes for that homecoming.

My Dad and I are very close.  In my 43 years with him before that flight, I had heard things about his time in service perhaps a dozen times.  Since the flight, in the past 5 months, he brings up a memory (good and bad) at least 3 out of the 5 times I see him in a week.

I recall in my lifetime seeing him cry maybe once.  Now he tears up but to my gratitude. It is incredible the damn that has burst, the processing and healing that has taken its place.

I will FOREVER be grateful to the Honor Flight and have pledged to spread its amazingness and help fund future veteran flights.

Thank you for giving me another opportunity by thanking you and your role in thanking all the deserving veterans. Thank you for giving me another opportunity by thanking you and your role in thanking all the deserving veterans.

 New store hours for Hankerson’s Country Oven Bakery in West Bend

 Hankerson’s Country Oven Bakery, 2107 W. Washington St., in West Bend is updating its schedule. The family-owned bakery will now be closed Tuesdays until further notice.

Owner Ryan Hankerson said that one day will allow staff to attend to some of the normal behind-the-scenes business. The bakery and diner will be open on Tuesdays during the holidays to accommodate special orders and family gatherings.

Hankerson’s was sold to Ryan Hankerson in September 2018. Since then the hometown bakery also added Colectivo Coffee. Hankerson’s operates on a normal 5 a.m. – 3 p.m. schedule except Sunday which is 5:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

 Look whooooo is back nesting at the old Lithia Brewery

It was May of last year when Ric Koch found a Great Horned owl nesting in what looks like an old vent in the side of the old Lithia Brewery building on Franklin Street in West Bend.

Koch moved into Rivershores and was out on his bike when he spotted the trail of dung on the side of the building. Next, he saw the baby owl. While we were filming the mother, owl flew the coop. (what are the chances?)

Located below the nesting site is a rather graphic collection of last night’s dinner.  Koch said owls will take in food and then yack up hair and bones and what not; a lot of that is in a small grassy area right under the nest. (you have been warned)

Calls were placed to Law Lawrann Conservancy to see if someone could identify the species and we were between a Great Horned Owl, a Burrowing Owl or even a Screech Owl.  (no Saved By the Bell jokes please).

Chris Schmidt, who owns the brewery building, stopped to take a look. The conversation gravitated to what happens when the baby tries its first flight? The nest is about 25 feet off the ground and below is cement. Schmidt, who rents space in the building to the West Bend Dance and Tumbling Troupe, suggested he go inside and bring out a couple of tumbling mats to help cushion the fall.

Now the mother owl has returned and a passerby on Tuesday said he’s already seen a couple of white tufts, possibly owlets, in the nest. If you happen by and don’t see the mother owl, look in the surrounding trees by the Milwaukee River. That’s good hunting area for them.

 City of West Bend selects 2018 Business of the Year

 The City of West Bend presented an award for the 2018 Business of the Year this week to First Bank Financial Centre, 1811 W. Washington Street. Mayor Kraig Sadownikow praised First Bank for being “truly a hometown community bank.”

“The award is a wonderful recognition of the commitment of our employees,” said Jeff McCarthy, First Bank marketing director and vice president. “Our employees spend about 15,000 a year volunteering in local communities and at the West Bend branch alone in 2018 spent nearly 400 hours volunteering.

“A lot of banks offer savings accounts and checking accounts but for us it’s about charitable giving and volunteerism that really makes a difference. The awards are nice but that’s not why we do it, we do it to make lives better.”  First Bank Financial Centre employs over 300 people and has branches in Hartford, West Bend and Germantown. Opened in 2002 and remodeled in 2017 the bank on W. Washington Street has nearly doubled the size of its branch on the west side of town.

 Kettle Moraine YMCA’s Dynamite Gymnasts Place at YMCA State Meet   By Kayla Teske

The 2019 YMCA State Gymnastics Meet “West Coast Dreams” was hosted by the La Crosse YMCA. The gymnastics competition was held at the Lacrosse Central High School in La Crosse, WI. The Dynamites’ team consisted of gymnasts in USAG Girls’ Levels 1-8, Xcel Gold, and Platinum.

YMCA gymnastics Event Champions:

Level 2 – 9-year-old – Floor Ex – Jordan Jashinsky (9.5), Ages 11 & up- Floor Ex – McKenzie Uniewski (9.3)

Level 3 – 10-year-old – Bars – Hope Konrath (9.2)

Level 4 – 11-year-old – Beam – Mallory Spaeth (9.35)

Level 6 – Ages 14 & up – Bars – Kayla Barker (8.9)

Ages 13 & under – Bars – Makayla Cibulka (9.0)

Ages 14 & up – Vault – Isabelle Thomas (9.225)

Gymnasts who placed 1, 2 or 3 in All Around:

Level 2 – 9-year-old – Jordan Jashinsky – 1st AA (36.65)

Level 6 – ages 13 & under – Makayla Cibulka – 1st AA (36.625)

ages 14 & up – Isabelle Thomas – 3rd AA (35.975)

Xcel Platinum

All Ages – Sloane Freitag – 3rd AA (33.4)

Team State Champions:  Level 6 with a team score of 108.8

The Dynamites will be competing in the 2019 YMCA Gymnastics National Championship in Wisconsin Dells, WI, June 19-23. The 2020 YMCA State Gymnastics Competition will be hosted by the Heart of the Valley YMCA.

 Hartford Union High School down to two finalists for superintendent.

 Ronald Russ and Jeffrey Walters are the two finalists for HUHS Superintendent position. Approximately 40 candidates applied for the position. Nine candidates were interviewed by the Board and four semi-finalists were selected for second-round interviews. A record check shows Walters signed the Walker Recall and Russ did not. Hartford Union High School District (HUHS) Superintendent, Attila J. Weninger, Ph.D., will retire his position effective June 30, 2019.

Celebrating the 100th anniversary of American Legion Lt. Ray Dickop Post 36

A special evening Saturday night, March 16 as members of the American Legion Lt. Ray Dickop Post 36 gathered to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the post. Commander Bart Williams oversaw the ceremony which paid tribute to veterans past and present and recognized the history of Lt. Ray Dickop. West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow was the keynote speaker.

“Leading, motivating and inspiring” were words Sadownikow focused on as he jumped into a short speech about veterans, the Tea Party, and the meaning behind the Don’t Tread on Me flag.

“The flag is actually called the Gadsen flag and named after General Christopher Gadsen of the Continental Marines during the Revolutionary War,” said Sadownikow.

The snake featured on the flag is described as “magnanimous.”

“It means to be gracious and noble in victory or defeat,” he said. “That is our service men and women, that is our Armed Services and that is the United States of America. That is all of you, gracious and noble in victory defeat.” Quoting Ben Franklin, Sadownikow said the snake in the Gadsen flag followed three rules to live by, “Never, always, never.”

“Never looking for trouble, always giving warning and if a snake is tread on it never surrenders,” said Sadownikow. “It will fight to the death to protect its home, family, itself and presumable its snake friends. I’m looking right now at a bunch of red blooded, American rattlesnakes.”

Also recognized during the ceremony were two of the oldest veterans in the room.  Joe Zadra, 96, who served in the U.S. Army and fought in the Battle of the Bulge and Allan Kieckhafer, 95, who joined the Navy when he was 18 and fought at Iwo Jima, Saipan, Guam and Okinawa.

Wrapping up the ceremony Williams and Sadownikow unveiled a plaque that would be a tribute to Lt. Ray Dickop. Below are details from the write up.

Ray C. Dickop was born on May 30, 1891, in Beloit, WI.  His mother, Ada (1872-1913), and his father, John (1861-1904), predeceased him.  Census records show Ray Dickop lived with his mother at 7 Maple Ave, South Beloit, IL in 1912.  Old maps show the location of his home at 7 Maple St.  Maple was renamed to Dickop Street after his death to commemorate this great national hero of World War I.  He also had a paternal aunt, Hilda Schiller, and cousin, Lena Schiller, who lived in West Bend, WI.

Dickop was 2nd Lieutenant in Company L, 1ST Wis. Infantry, Wisconsin National Guard, at Beloit, WI, when mobilized July 15, 1917.  He was assigned to Co. L when the U.S. Army’s 127th Infantry was organized and rode to France aboard USS George Washington.  He was promoted to First Lieutenant (Infantry), U.S. Army Company L, 127th Infantry Regiment, 32D ‘Red Arrow’ Division, American Expeditionary Force (A.E.F.). Lt. Dickop was killed in action (KIA) while serving with Company L, 127th Infantry Regiment in France during WWI.  He was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for extraordinary heroism.

Updates & tidbits

 The Washington County Sheriff’s Office released the names of the deceased operators from the March 17, accident on County Highway NN. John David Johnson, 52, from Town of Barton and Michael George Roeber, 51, from West Bend. The Sheriff’s Office continues its investigation.

– In-person absentee voting for neighbors in the City of West Bend ends Friday, March 29, 2019. Voting at the City Clerk’s office is from 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.  Remember to bring a valid I.D.

– Cedar Community recently announced renovation plans for its Top of the Ridge Restaurant on the Cedar Ridge Campus. American Construction Services, in partnership with American Architectural Group and Studio Lux design firm, will manage renovations at the restaurant. Renovations begin March 27, 2019 with completion by the middle of June. Renovation includes new walls, carpet, furniture, the addition of a bar, and lounge area in the restaurant lobby.

– Tickets go on sale April 21 for the 32nd annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm. It will be held June 21 at Highland Dairy, LLC this year in Kewaskum. Mike, Linda and Corey Enright are set to roll out the red carpet and invite guests to tour the robotic farm, compete in pedal tractor pull, listen to live music and share in some eggs, ham, pancakes and applesauce.

– Adam Kirchhoff, a resident of West Bend and an RN on the Medical/Surgical Unit, has been recognized with Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin St. Joseph’s Hospital’s second quarter DAISY Award for his support and politeness.

-There will be a public information meeting for improvements to North Wacker Drive in the City of Hartford on Thursday, April 11, 2019.  The meeting will be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Hartford City Hall, in Scherger Hall Community Room (Room 101), 109 N. Main Street.  The City of Hartford is proposing to replace the bridge carrying North Wacker Drive over the Rubicon River.  The project is located approximately 0.2 miles north of the junction with WIS 60.  The project is currently scheduled for 2020. The roadway will be closed during construction.

– Common Sense Citizens of Washington County will meet Thursday, March 28 at the West Bend Moose Lodge at 7 p.m. Any person running for office in Washington County on the April 2 ballot is invited to introduce themselves. There may be time for questions from the audience depending on the number of candidates present. The meeting is open to the public.

– Get your tickets today for the Saturday, April 13 Brunch with the Easter Bunny brought to you by the West Bend Kiwanis. The event is from 7 a.m. – 11 a.m. at The Columbian, 3245 Lighthouse Lane in West Bend.

-The 2019 ArtWalk Sneak Peek Party at the Museum of Wisconsin Art. Get an up-close look at the 2019 hand painted banners by local artists before they are displayed on light poles in downtown West Bend. Admission to the event and galleries is free.

Vietnam veteran Gary Thetford of West Bend on April Honor Flight     By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran Gary Thetford, 71, of West Bend is heading to Washington D.C. on the April 6 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight. Born in 1947 in Toledo, Ohio, Thetford was drafted into the Army in 1968. “I remember the day, the first time I heard Otis Redding, ‘Sitting on the Dock of the Bay’,” he said.

Thetford completed Basic Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky and was then stationed in Fort Belvoir, Virginia to be trained as a printing press operator. “When I first went in after being drafted, chances were I’d be in infantry, so I took an extra year so I could pick my duty,” said Thetford. “I chose to be a printing press operator because I figured I wouldn’t have to go to Vietnam.”

After three months at Fort Belvoir, Thetford was sent to Vietnam, assigned to a topographical unit attached to Military Assistance Command, Vietnam. “I was a part of one of the field teams they sent, stationed on the Central Highlands,” said Thetford. “I traveled around the area, going to villages, showing movies, throwing leaflets out of helicopters or airplanes. We would go in with loudspeakers before some of the troops would make an assault on a village, to give the people a chance to surrender.”

Thetford’s service in the military ended on Christmas Eve in 1971, ranked as an E5. “One week after I left, the compound I was assigned to was overrun and I never got anything back,” Thetford said. “I had left all my gear behind to be shipped home. I don’t have any pictures or anything like that from serving.”

After his service, Thetford worked for the 7Up Bottling Company, until taking a job at a chemical company. He was eventually transferred to West Bend as a regional sales manager, over 35 years ago. Thetford shared while he’s never seen the current memorials and monuments, he has been to Washington D.C., while stationed at Fort Belvoir in 1969. “That was back when they had thousands of protesters on the memorial grounds. They sent us in there to do some guard duty,” he said.

Going on the Honor Flight and seeing the memorials is something Thetford is looking forward to but shared his concerns about his PTSD. “At first, I wasn’t going to go on the Honor Flight because I’ve had some bad experiences with some of the things that happened in Vietnam,” he said. “When they had the traveling wall war memorial in Germantown last year, I had a really bad experience with recalling things. When my wife put me in for the Honor Flight, I told her I’m glad she did but I really don’t want to go. Now that I’ve been going to the VA to get help, they thought it would be good to go.”

 Veteran Norvin Lehman of Slinger on April Honor Flight             By Samantha Sali

 Korean War veteran Norvin Lehman, 81, of Slinger, is heading to Washington D.C. on the April 6 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight. Born in 1937 in Washington County, Lehman attended two years of high school in Slinger before eventually volunteering to enlist in the Army in 1955 when he was 18 years old.

“My basic training was at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri and after that I went to Quartermaster School in Fort Lee Virginia,” Lehman said. After 10 weeks of training, Lehman was sent to France where he drove truck. “It was exciting over there, all the places I’ve seen. I’ve gone from the English Channel down to Spain, just driving trucks,” said Lehman. “I drove all over those European countries and it was rough at times, but there wasn’t too much I could complain about. I’m grateful for the experiences.”

Lehman’s service in the Army ended in September of 1956, retiring as a Private First Class. “After a while, I worked for the Wacker Corporation and drove semi for them for a while until I officially retired in 1990s”

Lehman remembered coming home to nobody but his sister waiting to drive him home. Lehman retired because he had a heart transplant a few months later, “My heart wasn’t pumping,” said Lehman. “It was only working at three percent.”

Lehman shared that his family is happy he can go on the Honor Flight. “It’s something they had been hoping would happen,” he said. “I’m looking forward to seeing the buildings and monuments, but it’s not the first time I’ve seen it. A long time ago, I was there during a bowling trip.”

Lehman’s son, Steven, will be his guardian on the flight. Lehman also has two daughters and met his wife over 59 years ago. “She was milking cows when I met her,” he said. “I just popped right in to talk to her and that was history.” Before the interview ended, Lehman wanted to impart some marital advice to the younger generation. “You gotta take the good with the bad,” he said. “Not everything is peaches and cream. Don’t toss it when it’s broken.”

On a side note: During a sentimental moment Lehman went from talking about the service, to buying his first car to the love of his life Eileen. Throughout the afternoon, Lehman teared up. He’s currently going through treatment at the VA and he was truly gracious for the opportunity to go on the Honor Flight and to have spent his life with someone who has stood by his side in good times and bad.

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Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Finance Director explains nearly $106 million in total referendum debt and interest for West Bend School District

There were experts available at the open house in Jackson to tour the Elementary School and ask questions about the upcoming April 2 referendum.

Andy Sarnow is the newest finance director in the West Bend School District. He explained the facts regarding the remaining referendum debt and interest from Badger and Silverbrook and then calculated the grand total should the total $74 million referendum pass in April.

-“We still have debt existing,” said Sarnow. “The existing debt we have to pay off over the next 10 years (2028) is approximately $28 million. The additional interest over the next 10 years is approximately $3.5 million.”

-“So about $32 million to $33 million left to pay for Badger and Silverbrook referendum.”

-Regarding the April 2 referendum. “So as we look at the authority that the referendum is to issue $47 million in bonds the projection at this point in time, and it’s conservatively high… we’re using 4.25 percent, recent issues are lower than that, but at 4.25 percent it’s $27 million in interest that will be paid over the life of the bond over the next 19 years (2038) and that total is $74 million,” said Sarnow.

-“Badger and Silverbrook are about $28 million to $29 million plus the interest we said was about $4.5 million,” said Sarnow.

-$32 million (Badger and Silverbrook) + $74 million (April 2 referendum) is about $106 million total to be paid off should the April 2 referendum pass.

-“$74 million and $32 million…. do you have a calculator? I know you have one on your phone,” said Sarnow.

– “That’s not how it’s commonly referred to,” said Sarnow regarding the word ‘debt.’

– “You go to a bank and you take out a mortgage for $200,000 to buy a home and you are $200,000 in debt. Does that mean you’re not paying any interest? No, you’re paying interest…. so I don’t want to say we’re ‘in debt $106 million’ that is the amount we will be repaying to be debt free.”

History on current referendums in West Bend School District

Taking a look at the current referendums the West Bend School District is paying off….

In April 2009, voters in West Bend approved a $29.3 million plan to renovate, as well as build an addition to Badger Middle School.

In November 2012 the West Bend School District passed a $22.8 million referendum to close Barton Elementary School, expand Silverbrook School and add classrooms and a gym at Green Tree Elementary School. The actual total cost of the referendum with taxes and interest was $31.975 million with a 15-year payback on borrowing.

After the Nov. 2012 referendum passed the $31.9 million total was added on top of the $29.3 million payment for the 2009 Badger referendum.

According to Baird “As of January 14, 2019 the District has principal debt outstanding” including $29,420,000 from Fund 39 referendum and Fund 38 non-referendum approved debt of $5,011,000.

The target date to completely pay off the debt and interest on current referendums is 2028.

The April 2 referendum would extend over 19 years to be paid off in 2038.

April 2 referendum question

Shall the West Bend Joint School District Number 1, Washington County, Wisconsin be authorized to issue pursuant to Chapter 67 of the Wisconsin Statutes, general obligation bonds in an amount not to exceed $47,000,000 for the public purpose of paying the cost of a school building and improvement program consisting of: construction of a new Jackson Elementary School; safety, security, building infrastructure, technical education and engineering lab improvements, remodeling and capital improvements at the High School; and acquisition of related furnishings, fixtures and equipment?

On a history note: Below is a list of some of the heads of the finance department in the West Bend School District over the past three years. Brittany Altendorf held the position for six years until 2017 and after that four people in the post including two three-month spans where Tim Stellmacher filled in before the next person was hired.

July 2011 – July 2017​​​ Brittany Altendorf

August 2017 – March 2018 ​​CESA 5 (Dave Van Spankeren)

April 2018 – July 2018 ​​​Tim Stellmacher

April 2018 – December 2018​​ Karen Herman

January 2019 – mid March 2019​​ Tim Stellmacher

February 18, 2019 – current​​ Andy Sarnow  March 8, 2019

Silver Alert driver stopped for going wrong way on I41

Some great work Wednesday night by the Washington County Sheriff’s Department after they safely stopped a vehicle going the wrong way on I41.

“The driver was part of a Silver Alert notification out of Manitowoc,” said Sheriff Martin Schulteis.

Manitowoc Police issued the Silver Alert at 7 a.m. on March 13 for 75-year-old Dennis Ullman who left a wellness center and did not return. Around 10:44 p.m. the dispatch center at the Washington County Sheriff’s Department received multiple calls about a driver going the wrong way on I41.

“Menomonee Falls Police actually got a call that he was northbound in the southbound lanes,” said Schulteis.

Washington County Sheriff’s Deputies managed to stop the vehicle at the 41/45 split. ”That’s a good 7 to 8 miles he was going northbound in the southbound lanes,” Schulteis said. “The deputies said he was extremely confused and unaware of what road he was on.”

The man was brought to the Sheriff’s Department where his family came to pick him up.

Schulteis said the department has a policy not to chase a person in the opposite direction on the Interstate. This is the second such wrong-way incident in Washington County in about a week. On March 8 a wrong-way driver on Highway 33 was involved in a fatal accident after the driver was headed east in the westbound lanes.

“In this case it was an elderly driver with a medical issue and in the earlier accident it looks like alcohol was involved,” said Schulteis. “Overall, it’s just an important lesson about not driving in the left-hand lane when on divided highways because when people are confused or intoxicated, they think they’re in the right-hand lane. It’s an important aspect and I have a young son who I teach not to drive in the left lane at night and it’s just for that reason.”

Why so much foam in Hartford                                         By Steve Volkert

 A large amount of foam closed a portion of Rural Street in Hartford on Thursday morning as the large white mass moved across streets and bridges.

Hartford Sewer Utility Director David Piquett said the foam, which was between the Rural Street Bridge, is a seasonal anomaly.  “There is NO toxicity in the foam or causing the foam. The Dissolved Organic Carbon (DOC) is high which happens especially during this time of year.

DOC elevates when naturally produced surfactants (organic pollutants) released from algae blooms and aquatic plants dissolve in water. The combination of DOC that is already in the river along with the amount that comes from our storm sewers and soils that border the river will cause foam.

The reason for the Rural Street build-up is due the high DOC which is agitated by the high flow coming through the dam. The water level is up to the top of the bridge and is acting as a skimmer, because of the short distance between the dam and the bridge. Dissolved Organic carbon is in the water year-round, but this level will drop pretty quickly along with the height of the river. I know it is unsightly, but it is a natural occurrence. Hope this helps explain a little.

Building home to Walmart in West Bend for sale

There’s quite a bit of property changing hands in West Bend and Washington County. One of the latest big box buildings posted for sale is the property at 1515 W. Paradise Drive. Many people know it as the building that’s home to Walmart.

Asking price for the 205,000-square-foot building is $18,829,629. The real estate listing said the building was constructed in 1998. According to the city assessor the current 2018 assessed value is $12,585,800.

The listing reads, “Walmart has been at this location for 20 years and recently exercised its first renewal option.”

Calls have been placed to the city assessor’s office to find out the last time the building was sold and the current assessment.  Other property changes include a new owner for the building at 105 N. Main Street.  Tracey Serwatt bought the property that’s home to Portrait’s Today for about $315,000.

Also watch for Woody’s Flooring to move from its shop on Stockhausen Lane to 830 S. Main Street in the West Bend Plaza strip center where George Webb’s is on the end cap.

There will also be a new CrossFit business moving into the north end cap of the same West Bend Plaza strip center, across from Kwik Trip.

A ‘rookery’ of penguins stepped out in downtown West Bend

A bit like ‘March of the Penguins’ on Thursday as ‘a colony, a rookery or a Waddle’ of colorful penguins stepped up N. Main Street in downtown West Bend. The appearance was part of a promotion to draw attention to the upcoming performance of Madagascar by the West Bend Children’s Theatre. Shows are April 10, 11, and 12.

Updates & tidbits

– In-person absentee voting for neighbors in the City of West Bend starts Monday, March 18, 2019. Voting at the City Clerk’s office is from 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.  In-person absentee voting ends Friday, March 29, 2019 at 5 p.m.  Remember to bring a valid I.D.

-There will be a public information meeting for improvements to North Wacker Drive in the City of Hartford on Thursday, April 11, 2019.  The meeting will be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Hartford City Hall, in Scherger Hall Community Room (Room 101), 109 N. Main Street. There will be a brief presentation at 6 p.m. The City of Hartford is proposing to replace the bridge carrying North Wacker Drive over the Rubicon River.  The project is located approximately 0.2 miles north of the junction with WIS 60.  The project is currently scheduled for 2020. The roadway will be closed to through traffic during construction.

– Common Sense Citizens of Washington County will meet Thursday, March 28 at the West Bend Moose Lodge at 7 p.m. Any person running for office in Washington County on the April 2 ballot is invited to introduce themselves. Tentatively, each candidate will be given five minutes to speak about themselves, not their opponent. There may be time for questions from the audience depending on the number of candidates present. The meeting is open to the public.

– Get your tickets today for the Saturday, April 13 Brunch with the Easter Bunny brought to you by the West Bend Kiwanis. The event is from 7 a.m. – 11 a.m. at The Columbian, 3245 Lighthouse Lane in West Bend.

-The 2019 ArtWalk Sneak Peek Party at the Museum of Wisconsin Art. Get an up-close look at the 2019 hand painted banners by local artists before they are displayed on light poles in downtown West Bend. These banners turn Main Street in West Bend into an outdoor gallery May through October. Take a piece of the ArtWalk home with you as a silent auction of banners from 2017 will take place during this event. Come prepared to bid for your favorite banners. Enjoy music, food and a cash bar. Admission to the event and galleries is free.

– Hartford Union High School’s (HUHS) Board of Education announced it has four semi-finalists for the Superintendent position. Stephen T. Plank, Principal, Middleton High School, Middleton-Cross Plains School District Ronald D. Russ, Superintendent, Merton Community School District Ralph Schlass, Principal, West Bend West High School and Jeffrey A. Walters, Principal, Kettle Moraine High School, Kettle Moraine School District. A record check shows Walters, Schlass and Plank all signed the Walker Recall.

-Numerous stretches of roadways experienced high water levels on Thursday as temps in the 50s combined with torrential downpours to create some hazardous in Washington County. Some of the road closures included State Highway 144 from Highway 33 to I41 and County Highway DW from County Highway W to State Highway 175

– Hartford Union High School senior Miranda Parker will once again tour the state of Wisconsin this summer with Kids from Wisconsin. Joining her this year as an understudy is freshman Connor Martin. This is Parker’s second year as a Kid.

Honor Flight veterans from Washington County

There will be 15 veterans from Washington County on the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight on April 6. This will be the 50th mission as two planes leave Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport with 172 veterans on board.  Interviews with some of the veterans are below.

Vietnam veteran Judith Pierce of Hartford on April Honor Flight            By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran Judith Pierce, 73, of Hartford is heading to Washington D.C. on the April 6 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Born in Hartford on March 25, 1945, Pierce was raised in Rubicon with her seven siblings, attending school St. John Catholic Church. The school closed in the late 60’s.

After graduating high school, Pierce attended nursing school in St. Agnes in Fond Du Lac.

“I didn’t even know a nurse, I chose the profession because I just wanted to help people,” said Pierce.  “I’ve always been a people person and I always felt the need to do something and help people and I figured I could accomplish that with a nursing education.”

Around 1966, military recruiters came to St. Agnes, giving a talk to the nursing students about how they needed nurses for the war in Vietnam.

“When I asked my dad to help me pay my tuition, he said I had to pay him back because it would be unfair to give me money for college and not my other siblings,” said Pierce. “When the recruiters came to St. Agnes, they told us they’d start paying us our senior year, as if we were a private already in the service. Of course, you have to pay them back time, but the little calculator in my mind was just buzzing. I thought if I went in then, I could start paying my dad back, so I raced up there and was the first one to get the paperwork.”

Despite being 20 years old, Pierce had to take a permission slip to her parents over the weekend in order to be allowed to serve as a nurse in the military.

”Both of them said no,” said Pierce. “They weren’t narrow minded, but for that era, you didn’t really hear about women serving. By Sunday, I told them I was already living outside of the home, told them they did a great job raising me, and said I already am what I am, that I will be what I will be. My mom looked at my dad and they said I was right and signed the permission slip.”

After Pierce graduated and became board certified, she entered active military duty in 1966. She received Basic Training in Texas and then to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.

From there, she was assigned to Korea. “They had what they called hardship tours, one in Korea and one in Vietnam. I actually wanted to go to Vietnam at first, but when given the choice, I chose Korea. I was so idealistic, comparing myself to Florence Nightingale, thought I was going to save the world. I grew up so sheltered, in such a small area, I was so naive. I thought everyone was white, German, and Catholic. Going into the military was one of the best moves of my life.”

Last year, Pierce was able to take her family to South Korea to watch the 2018 Winter Olympics and show where she served 50 years ago.

“I was stationed at the 43rd Surgical Hospital in Uijongbu, which is mentioned in the TV show MASH. They even show across the street a Rosie’s Bar and that’s where I had my farewell party when I left,” Pierce said.

While in South Korea, Pierce lived in a Quonset hut. “It was so cold in the winter, just like Wisconsin, so I used to sleep in my military-issued coat because the huts weren’t insulated,” she said. “During monsoon season, frogs would jump in the bathrooms and there was a light in the closet that had to stay on all of the time or our shoes and clothes would mold from the rain.”

After Pierce retired as a Lieutenant in 1969, she went back to college in Oshkosh and received a bachelor’s degree in Psychology.

After graduating, she worked at the VA in Milwaukee until around 1971, “I had served the VA for about a year when my roommate asked me to join her on Project Hope,” said Pierce. “It was a hospital ship, traveling to foreign countries and give medical care to people in need. I donated a whole year, working in Kingston, Jamaica on the SS Hope.”

“I’ve always been an opportunist. When opportunities came along, I just went. When I worked at the VA, a group of friends invited me to a 3-week ski trip in Europe. I’d never went skiing before, but said yes, ran over to Little Switzerland to learn how to ski, and had a blast.”

Despite being almost 74, Pierce has never let go of her love of sports and you can still find her on hills at Little Switzerland in Slinger with her grandchildren.

”When they called me to let me know it was my turn for the flight, they asked me if I needed a wheelchair or cane. I was skiing at Little Switzerland,” Pierce said.

“My daughter, Tiffany Lucas, is my guardian for the flight. I’ve been to the memorials before, but I’m looking forward to the comradery with the other veterans on the flight. It’s great to be finally recognized for our service in Vietnam. When the war ended, no one really thanked us for our service or even recognized military members for serving. They really didn’t start thanking Vietnam veterans until 10 or 15 years ago.”

After the Honor Flight, you’ll be able to find Pierce at Little Switzerland or ice skating with her grandchildren. Once summer arrives, she plans on taking up water skiing.

Veteran, Gerald Gramins Sr., of Hartford to fly on Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali

Vietnam War veteran Gerald Gramins Sr., 80, of Hartford is heading to Washington D.C. on April 6 as part of Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Born March 7, 1939 in Milwaukee, Gramins attended Custer High School and Boys Tech, now known as Bradley Tech. He then enlisted in the Navy on Aug. 22, 1956 at age 17. “I remember it like it was yesterday,” Gramins said.

Once enlisted, Gramins was sent to Great Lakes, Illinois Naval Station for Basic Training. After graduating from basic training, he was transferred to Norman, Oklahoma. “I went for what they called AMP School. With that, I held an aviation rating for the Navy.”

From there, Gramins served aboard the USS Shangri-la, “It’s a CVA 38 Aircraft Carrier and I was an Aviation Guided Missile Technician,” said Gramins.

In 1961, Gramins went into the Navy Reserves until 1974 when he retired from the Navy as a 3rd Class Petty Officer.

He then decided to join the Army. “I was a machinist, served with the 961st Combat Engineers in Milwaukee. After a couple of years, I joined the 84th Division Army, stationed in Milwaukee as well,” said Gramins.

In 1992, Gramins retired from the military at the age of 53, as an E8 First Sergeant.

He and his wife, Dolores, moved to Hartford a few years ago, “We’ve been married almost 43 years, met at a country western bar. Dolores is somewhat disabled, and we moved here when a condo opened up by happenstance,” said Gramins.

Gramins and his wife were blessed with five sons, one of which is his guardian for the flight. ”I picked Gary to be my guardian because some time ago I took his twin brother to Norfolk, Virginia and now I figured it was Gary’ turn to go,” said Gramins.

Gramins shared that while he looks forward to seeing the memorials, he is most excited about spending time with the other veterans on the flight. “I’m looking forward to the comradeship. A lot of them are a lot more deserving than I am.”

Vietnam veteran Edward Patoka of Hartford on April Honor Flight | By Samantha Sali 

Vietnam War veteran Edward Patoka, 80, of Hartford is heading to Washington D.C. on the April 6 Stars and Stripes Honor Flight.

Born in Milwaukee on February 8, 1939, Patoka was drafted in 1962 at the age of 22.

Once drafted, Patoka was sent to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri for Basic Training. From there, he was sent to Heavy Equipment Operator School and was shipped to Vassimcourt, France in June 1962.

“I was with the P Company, 97 Engineers and when I got to my outfit, they said us heavy equipment operators were a dime a dozen,” Patoka said. “They asked me what I did as a civilian and I told them I worked in an office. They asked if I could type and when I told them I learned to type in high school, they told me I was their new company clerk.”

One of the most memorable days in service for Patoka was Nov. 22, 1963. “It was the day President Kennedy was shot and a French man is the one who told me,” he said.

Patoka served in France until December 31, 1963 and came home on inactive duty for four years. “When I got home, I went right back to work and got in trouble because they thought I was on vacation. Everyone only ever asked me how my vacation was and the only people who ever told me, “Welcome Home,” were my family.”

Patoka switched careers and became a letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service until he retired in 1992. He moved to Hartford in 1995 with his wife, Patricia, whom he married two years before being drafted. The couple had two adopted children, Elizabeth and John.

Their son John passed away in 2012. “He had medical issues and it was very sad and difficult. You never think as a parent you’d have to bury a child,” said Patoka.

“I’m still very busy. I work at Lincoln School three days a week, working with kindergarteners to 3rd grade. I love it and I have no intentions of giving it up. They read to me and I help them learn how to tell time or about money, whatever the teachers ask of me. The kids at the school call me Mr. Ed and come up to me, thanking me. They are proud of what I did and ask me things about the service. One kid asked me if I ever shot someone. I said no, and that’s never something that you’d want to do.”

Patoka said he’s looking forward to seeing the memorials and sharing the moments with the other veterans on the flight.

His son-in-law, Paul, will be his guardian on the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight, “He’s served in the Marines and he’s never been to Washington D.C. I thought this was a good guy to go with because I like him as a son-in-law, he’s a great guy, and he served four years. It will do him good to get away and see everything,” Patoka said.

Patoka admitted he waited quite a few years to sign up for the Honor Flight because he wanted to give other veterans a chance to go first, “I was an in-betweener, I served during the Vietnam War, but wasn’t actually there. My buddy told me I did what I had to do, so yeah, I guess I’m proud to have served. I might have not done much, but I did what I had to do.”

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Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

One more season at Carl M. Kuss Field before the remodel

After a big ‘last hurrah’ at the end of the 2018 baseball season at Carl M. Kuss Field in West Bend it appears there will actually be one more season before reconstruction starts.

It was during Monday night’s West Bend Common Council meeting when Dist. 6 alderman Steve Hoogester made the first announcement.

“And the baseball field with the redo of the Carl Kuss Field at Regner Park it’s looking more and more right now like they won’t start working on it probably ‘til August because of different things they’re still trying to work out.” said Hoogester.

It was Jan. 22, 2019 when the last update on construction was presented to the Council. It was announced the project would be completed in several phases.

According to West Bend Park and Rec director Craig Hoeppner the group, including WBBA, Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation and the City, and Fields Inc. stated they are working on final designs and plans for the field, which includes surveying, geo-tech and storm water design work.

Hoeppner said another priority is refining the budget which is currently around $1.4 million. It appears there are still a number of questions on actual costs which the group stated were being worked out.

Phase I includes the synthetic field, fencing and dugouts. Phase II would include the lights, grandstand, concessions and restrooms. At this time, funding is around 60-percent complete for Phase I.

Hoeppner said all Phase I funding will need to be completed before any construction begins. Once construction begins, it will take about 100 days to complete. Early hopes, according to Hoeppner are that construction begins this Spring. Another meeting is slated for Feb. 1 for more updates.

Willie Mueller with the West Bend Baseball Association confirmed Tuesday afternoon that it looks like another season before construction. “The diamond will be status quo until August 15,” said Mueller. “It’s alright to play one more season here. According to the West Bend Baseball Association we could start March 8 but now the field is still playable and we’ll be able to do a little more fundraising this summer.”

The timetable from the Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation regarding its donation is normally 18 months to fund a project from the time it commits until construction is underway.

Even though Carl M. Kuss Field will be playable this summer, Mueller said there will be no way it’s ready for spring ball. Remember, all WIAA baseball teams now play spring ball which starts March 18.

“Even when the boys had summer ball, early May to late April, there would be water in right field,” said Mueller. “Criminy, I just talked to a guy up north and they still have 70 inches of snow on the ground up in Crivitz. Spring ball starts in 13 days… what do you think it looks like here… do you think we’re playing?”

Mayor Kraig Sadownikow confirmed Tuesday night construction would start at the end of summer in August 2019. “The hope is to have spring ball there … but according to Doug Gonring and Billy Albrecht and some of the guys I consider baseball experts, this is a foolish exercise in Wisconsin that to have some happy middle ground probably would have made some sense to start this April 15 or June 15,” he said.

Funeral set for Bob Zarling of Kewaskum

Funeral details for Bob Zarling of Kewaskum have been released. Zarling died Tuesday, March 5 while wintering with his wife Char in Texas. Zarling was a long-time senior vice president of sales and marketing for Regal Ware and a dedicated member of the Kiwanis Club in Kewaskum.

In an article published on on March 6, Kevin Schneumann paid tribute to Zarling and his mentorship.

“That’s a devastating loss for the Kiwanis Club in Kewaskum,” said Kiwanis Club vice president Kevin Scheunemann. “He was the bedrock of our club and I have to personally thank Bob Zarling for getting me involved in Kiwanis because he was persistent and finally after eight or 10 visits he got me to join the club.”

Scheunemann described Zarling as a “tenacious recruiter” for Kiwanis in Kewaskum. “I’m still the new guy with 25 years in the club but Bob had about a half century of service in to Kiwanis. It’s a momentous loss to the club and the community.”

“My deepest sympathies to his wife and family and we’re all really saddened by the loss,” Scheunemann said. “Tireless” was one of the words Scheunemann used to describe Zarling. “His commitment to the community was incredible from membership recruitment to fundraising, service time and the guy just made me tired by looking at him by how much he did for the club.”

“Bob Zarling was a big member of the American Legion and one of the great pillars of Kewaskum and it’s a sad day for the entire community,” said Scheunemann.

“It’s unfortunate but I have confidence in Bob’s faith that he’s home with The Savior,” said Scheunemann. “I have no doubt about Bob’s Christian faith. He worked because of his faith in Christ, he didn’t do it for himself.”

Aaron Laatsch wrote, “Bob was such a great supporter of everything Kewaskum! He was especially supportive of the development of Reigle Family Park and spoke passionately about how important that development is for Kewaskum.”

Visitation for Bob Zarling will be Saturday, March 16 starting at 10 a.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 809 S. Sixth Avenue, West Bend 53095. A memorial service will follow at 11 a.m.

New tenant for former Bank Mutual location in West Bend

It looks like it’ll be another bank moving into the former Bank Mutual location, 1526 S. Main Street in West Bend. The property on S. Main Street sold to ENDF3DK LLC on Sept. 27, 2018 for$1,065,420.

The parcel was last assessed at $1,563,000. A spokeswoman for Landmark Credit Union, based in New Berlin, said it did purchase the property and they are remodeling.

“It will match the look and feel of the other branches we have,” said Katie Monfre, communications manager for Landmark Credit Union.

“It offers our members a number of advantages including private offices, a drive-thru lane, a drive-up ATM and it will give us both an in-store presence in West Bend and one location as a stand-alone branch.”

Landmark Credit Union is currently located in the Kroger Pick ‘n Save stores in West Bend. A larger, standalone branch is located at 1400 Schauer Drive in Hartford. “We’re always looking for the right opportunity for our members,” said Monfre. “This happened to be an excellent opportunity so we took advantage of it.”

Monfre said they “don’t have an exact open date yet” but they are looking at late summer or early fall.

In September 2017 a story was posted about Bank Mutual consolidating with Associated Bank. Bank Mutual, 1526 S. Main Street in West Bend, was one of 28 branches that consolidated with Associated. The receiving branch is the Associated Bank, 715 W. Paradise Drive.

Fifteen veterans from Washington County on April 6 Honor Flight to Washington D.C.

There will be 15 veterans from Washington County on the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight on April 6. This will be the 50th mission as two planes leave Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport with 172 veterans on board.

Vietnam veterans include Army veteran Gerald Gramins Sr. of Hartford, Edward Patoka of Hartford, Judith Thorbahn Pierce of Hartford, Richard Langreck of Hubertus, Jerald Lowther of West Bend, James Mathia of West Bend, Robert Graff of West Bend, James Bokelman of West Bend, Gary Thetford of West Bend, and Allen Polachowski of West Bend.

Korean War veterans include Norvin Lehman of Slinger, Roland Nowak of West Bend, Erwin Wergin of West Bend, and Melvin Walters of West Bend.  WWII veteran is Lon Loebel of West Bend.

If you know any of these veterans and wish to pay tribute please feel free to submit their photo and watch for follow-up stories in the coming weeks.

Sharp shooters quietly trim herd in West Bend Parks

It’s been a while since anyone has been updated on the sharp shooters and their success at trimming the number of deer in Ridge Run Park and Lac Lawrann Conservancy.

It was December 2018 when Tommy Schwai walked us into the freezer area to seven deer turned in by sharp shooters. Schwai’s is processing the deer free of charge and donating the meat to the Full Shelf Food Pantry in West Bend.

The sharp shooters were contracted by the City of West Bend for a managed hunt at $9,002. The cooperative service agreement with the USDA Wildlife Service indicates the sharp shooters will target the removal of 30 deer per park.

The City applied for a $5,000 Urban Wildlife Damage Abatement and Control grant to help offset the expense. As of Monday night, March 4 the city confirmed 33 deer had been removed by the sharp shooters and the effort would continue through mid-March. The city is targeting a reduction in deer numbers in an effort to reduce deer damage to habitat, property and car/deer collisions.

“Our contracted sharp shooters have been making good progress toward the overall herd-reduction goal,” said Mayor Kraig Sadownikow. “We are happy with their efforts to date and are pleased thus far.”

This is the second year the City is attempting to reduce the deer population. During an archery hunt at the end of December 2017 three hunters managed to kill three deer in a span of five days. Thirty-five pounds of venison was donated to the Full Shelf Food Pantry.

The licensed sharp shooters are performing the hunt during the evening at Ridge Run Park and Lac Lawrann Conservancy. The hunt will be conducted while the parks are closed. Thanks to Tommy Schwai for processing the meat free of charge and donating it to the Full Shelf Food Pantry in West Bend.

West Bend Plan Commission approves additions to ALDI and Krimmer’s Restaurant  

The West Bend Plan Commission gave the green light to a number of developments ahead including an expansion at ALDI, a 1,213-square-foot addition and outside patio at Krimmer’s Restaurant, 114 N. Main Street, a reduction in parking spots at the new Morrie’s West Bend Honda on southwest corner of W. Washington Street and Scenic Drive W.  An original total of 581 vehicle stalls were provided on site.

The developer will be removing approximately 136 parking stalls.  Finally, Kevin Dittmar from Dittmar Realty will be building eight cold storage units and mini warehousing on the southwest corner Lang Street and N. River Road on the east side of West Bend.

S.A.M.B.A fundriser is March 23 at Slinger High School PAC                 By Ron Naab

The Slinger Area Music Booster Association (S.A.M.B.A.) will hold its annual fundraiser in the new Slinger Performing Arts Center. The event is March 23 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. There will be five-star entertainment including Slinger High School drum line, jazz band, the middle school select choir, and high school choirs.

There will also be a special performance by Slinger alum Hannah Mrozak who performed on The Voice. The featured performance will be the nationally touring Dueling Pianos show from Milwaukee, WI – TOP Dueling Pianos. Your ticket also includes a specialty nonalcoholic drink from Milwaukee’s Concoctions Drink Deliciously company, delectably delicious desserts, and light appetizers. The first 500 tickets sold will also receive a commemorative “Slinger Soiree” stem less wine glass.

There will be silent auctions, raffles, a wine pull, and live auction. Prizes include Billy Joel Tickets, Brewer tickets, Slinger Owl Fire pit, top of the line beverage and wine fridge, dinner for 8 and drinks at West Bend’s Tap and Tavern, and many more amazing prizes!

3 players from UWM at Washington County named to Wisconsin Collegiate Conference All Conference | By Deb Butschlick

Three players from the UWM at Washington County basketball team were named to the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference All-Conference team. Sammie Brown a Kewaskum graduate majoring in Business Communications was selected to Wisconsin Collegiate Conference Second Team All-Conference for the Wildcats this year. Brown is a player and athlete who affects the game in many ways. She led the team in points per game with 11.3, second on the team in rebounds per game with 7.5, and she led our team in assists per game with 2.7. Brown can also guard anywhere from the shooting guard position to the center position. She has played at every spot in our zone defense. Above all, Brown became a “player-coach” for us this year. With an inexperienced team, Brown took the time to teach and help her teammates learn and develop throughout the year. As team captain her patience and leadership helped the team improve every day.

Kayla Boehm a Slinger graduate majoring in Business was selected to Wisconsin Collegiate Conference Honorable Mention for the All-Conference team. Boehm never played basketball before this year; however, she still averaged 8.6 points per game, 13.7 rebounds per game and 1.4 blocks per game. Boehm had three games where she grabbed 22 rebounds, 19 rebounds, and 17 rebounds respectively. Also, she only had two games where she did not grab more than 5 offensive rebounds. Throughout the year, Boehm began to learn the defensive side of basketball, and she became one of the top shot blockers in conference. At semester break, Boehm only had two blocks total, but she finished with 15 blocks in the final four games alone; including one game with four blocks, and another game with six blocks.

Brianna Beilfuss a Port Washington graduate majoring in Nursing was selected to Wisconsin Collegiate Conference Honorable Mention for the All-Conference team. Despite joining the team at semester, Beilfuss averaged 10.8 PPG shooting 35% from 3PT territory including a 5 for 9 3PT performance in one game. She averaged 7.0 RPG and continuously brought energy and hustle to our team. If it was tracked as an official stat, Beilfuss would’ve led the conference in diving for loose ball. She always made the winning plays for the team, and those plays don’t always show up on a stat sheet.

Fatal accident on Hwy 33 in West Bend                    By Washington County Sheriff

 Washington County suffered its first and second fatal accidents within hours of each other on Friday night, March 8. At 8:28 p.m., the Washington County Sheriff’s Office was notified of, and dispatched Deputies to, a two vehicle crash with injuries in the area of Hwy 33 and Riesch Road in the township of West Bend. Additionally, Allenton Rescue and West Bend Rescue were called to the scene.

It was reported by one witness that the operator of the first vehicle was trapped inside and there were no signs of life. Upon arrival of West Bend Rescue, it was confirmed the operator was deceased. The operator of the second vehicle suffered no apparent injuries and was released on scene. The passenger of the second vehicle was transported to Froedtert Hospital by ambulance with leg and back injuries.

Preliminary investigation shows the first vehicle was operating eastbound in the westbound lanes of traffic on Highway 33 (opposite lane of travel). The second vehicle was westbound on Hwy 33 in the left lane. The vehicles then collided head-on.

Weather and road conditions were not a factor in the crash. The westbound lanes of Hwy 33 were closed to traffic for approximately three hours to facilitate the investigation and clean-up.

The deceased operator is a 43-year-old male from Jackson, Wisconsin. The operator of the second vehicle is a 38-year-old male from Eden, Wisconsin, and the injured passenger is a 31-year-old female from Eden, Wisconsin. This is Washington County’s first traffic fatality in 2019. No further information is being released at this time and the crash remains under investigation.

Fatal accident in Slinger                                                        By Washington County Sheriff

On Friday, March 8, 2019 at 9:28 p.m., the Washington County Sheriff’s Office was notified of an incident in which a Canadian National train struck a person in the Town of Polk, near Maple Ave South in the Village of Slinger.

Slinger Police Department Officers and Washington County Sheriff’s Deputies responded, along with Lifestar Rescue and Slinger Fire Department. Upon arrival to the area, a deceased woman was located near the tracks. Further identification is withheld pending notification to the family. Train traffic was held on the tracks for approximately six hours, and the incident remains under investigation.

Military tribute to veteran Robert Henschel

More than 100 people stood silently in the back parking lot of the V.F.W. on Sand Drive in West Bend to pay their respects to veteran Robert Henschel. The West Bend Color Guard fired a three-round volley and then sounded Taps. A folded U.S. flag rested on the same table as a simple wooden box holding Henschel’s ashes.

Two members of the military performed the ceremonial unfolding and refolding of the flag. The purpose is done as a lasting tribute to the family as the flag previously draped the casket of the deceased veteran.

According to Flag Protocol the flag is placed on a closed casket so the union blue field is at the head and over the left shoulder of the deceased. After Taps is played, the flag is carefully folded into the symbolic tri-cornered shape. A properly proportioned flag will fold 13 times on the triangles, representing the 13 original colonies. The folded flag is emblematic of the tri-cornered hat worn by the Patriots of the American Revolution. When folded, no red or white stripe is to be evident, leaving only the blue field with stars.

It is then presented as a keepsake to the next of kin or an appropriate family member.

During the presentation of the flag to the family the following is said. ‘On behalf of the President of the United States, (the United States Army; the United States Marine Corps; the United States Navy; or the United States Air Force), and a grateful Nation, please accept this flag as a symbol of our appreciation for your loved one’s honorable and faithful service.’

Henschel, 70, was struck by a hit-and-run driver on Feb. 21. Henschel had been vacationing in Florida when the accident occurred. The Florida Highway Patrol said Henschel had run out of gas and was talking to a woman on the side of the Beachline turnpike when he was struck by another vehicle.

Lenten fish fry at The Columbian

The Lenten fish fry season is underway at The Columbian, 3245 Lighthouse Lane, in West Bend.          Helping Hands Fish Fry Fundraiser is 4 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. and includes 2 to 3 piece of baked or fried cod. Just a little history note on the season of Lent: “Lent is the six-week period leading up to Easter. Lent is frequently seen as a time of solemn observance and preparation for the celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus at Easter. From its start on Ash Wednesday until its conclusion on Easter Sunday, April 21, Lent has been a traditional time for fasting or giving something up or abstinence.”

Updates & tidbits

-The Hartford Fire Department was on scene Thursday afternoon at John’s Hobbies, 54 N. Main Street in Hartford. According to City Administrator Steve Volkert some people coming out of a neighboring business saw flames and smoke and called in the fire. That was around 4:10 p.m. Main Street was closed to traffic while firefighters extinguished the fire. The cause of the fire was outside the business and deemed electrical in nature. Nobody was injured.

– On March 15 the Kettle Moraine YMCA will hold its annual Party with a Purpose at Terrace 167.  The Annual Campaign is designed to make sure everyone has affordable access to the YMCA.

-The 2019 ArtWalk Sneak Peek Party at the Museum of Wisconsin Art. Get an up-close look at the 2019 hand painted banners by local artists before they are displayed on light poles in downtown West Bend. These banners turn Main Street in West Bend into an outdoor gallery May through October.

Take a piece of the ArtWalk home with you as a silent auction of banners from 2017 will take place during this event. Come prepared to bid for your favorite banners. Enjoy music, food and a cash bar.

Admission to the event and galleries is free.

-Cafe Floriana, 611 Veterans Ave Suite 104, in West Bend is open. Sisters Sara and Kat feature fresh, homemade bakery, sandwiches, soups and hot Stone Creek Coffee. The business opened on the first level of the former West Bend Company building, currently Cast Iron Luxury Living.

– The Washington County Deer Advisory Council (CDAC) will meet March 11 at 6 p.m. at Moraine Park Technical College. The CDAC will review data and form preliminary 2019 antlerless quota, permit and season structure recommendations. Following the March meetings, an online public comment period will take place from April 1-10, with a final council meeting being held in late April 15 to allow the council to review public feedback before making final recommendations on the antlerless quota, permit and season structure.

-Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School’s cheer team traveled to La Crosse on March 1 to compete in the Wisconsin State Cheerleading Championship. The team won first place.

 Jackson Police rescue owl                                                                        By Jackson Police

An interesting night at the Jackson Police Department as Officer Brinks was in charge of watching over a screech owl. The bird was hit by a Washington County Taxi and brought to the Jackson PD.

Officer Brinks kept watch over the owl overnight and made sure it was comfortable until they could contact Marty at Wanakia Wildlife. Marty picked up the owl Tuesday morning and said it suffered a concussion but should be ok. The owl spent the night in a holding cell in case it started to feel better and tried to fly the coop.

UW Marching Band performs at Slinger High School PAC

It was a sold-out show Friday night at the Slinger High School Performing Arts Center as the UW Marching Band performed a nearly two-hour show under the direction of Mike Leckrone.

It was a special performance that was three years in the making. The evening was sponsoring by the Slinger/Allenton Rotary and the event coincided with the 150th anniversary of the Village of Slinger.

The UW Marching Band warmed up the crowd as the seven tuba players ducked through the entryway and took their place in front of the stage. “How’s everybody doing tonight,” yelled the tuba player. “Ready for some fun.”

Then it was onto some classics including “When you say Wisconsin you’ve said it all” and “On Wisconsin.” Dressed in black pants and red sweaters emblazoned with the letter W the band followed some brief comments from the Rotary, Village President Russell Brandt and Slinger Superintendent Daren Sievers.

Some of the music included a medley from Lionel Richie, Neil Diamond, Frankie Valley, The Music Man, and Jesus Christ Superstar. Then the band jumped into the traditional Fifth Quarter with The Chicken Dance, Hey Baby, and the Beer Barrel Polka.

Leckrone was dressed in white pants and tennis shoes and a flashy red and white striped jacket. The 82 year old announced in 2018 that after 50 years at the helm this would be his last season with the Marching Band.

Time Investment family says ‘happy retirement’ to Gloria Fleischman

The Time Investment family, 100 N. Sixth Avenue in West Bend, rolled out the red carpet for long-time employee Gloria Fleischman.

“Gloria we love you,” said Tom Hafeman.  “We hired Gloria in 1999; Prince sang about her.”

Hafeman was the master of ceremonies during Fleischman’s retirement party where gifts were given. lunch was served and tears were shed as a 20-year employee wrapped up her career.

Ady Lennartz has worked at Time Investment since 2001.  “Gloria has always been one we can count on and she was always here in any type of weather; she was here no matter what. She was always happy, willing to help anybody else and a great person to know.”

Wendy Dubois has been with Time Investment for 20 years. “Gloria and I talk every day,” said Dubois. “I just love her. She’s so sweet, polite and helpful and always looking out for you. She will be missed.”

Tom Hafeman said Fleischman has been ‘the best employee.’  “I was there in 1999 when we hired Gloria and she came from a factory setting,” he said. “She was all nervous because she said she wasn’t that good of a typer but I gotta tell you it’s been a real pleasure the past 20 years because Gloria really has made a big difference in our company.”

Hafeman raved about Fleischman’s punctuality, especially when she would drive in from Campbellsport in winter. “She was always on time and she never miss work,” he said. “There could be 10 feet of snow and 30 degrees below zero and who would be here, Gloria!”

Hafeman said he even tried to spoil Fleischman on her last day by letting her clock out early… but she would have none of it. “We’d let her leave early, pay her until the end of the day…. and she wants to stay! I said Gloria… it’s your last day go enjoy your family. That’s just some dedication,” he said.

John Hafeman said Fleischman is a unique employee. “She has grown with us from when we were very small to where we are today,” he said. “She will be sorely missed; it has just been a real pleasure to work with her.”

Jayne Peplinski and Sara Struebing said Fleischman showed them the ropes. “She welcomed me like crazy and it was funny because she laughs about being a bad typer… and she was a fun lady and just super nice,” said Peplinski.

“I really thanked them for the opportunity to work here,” said Fleischman about the Hafeman family. “I hadn’t used a typewriter in 20 years so I took a typing course. It’s been a long road… but a good road.”

Fleischman said when she started the company was located in a pole building on River Road in West Bend. “When I started everything was done manually including deposits and data entry. We’ve come a long way, now it’s automated and there are so many new entities.”

“This started with a few of the Hafeman family in the basement of their home and now their kids work here.

“The Hafemans have been very good to me and I have nothing but good things to say,” she said.

Fleischman said during retirement she will work on things on the farm and straighten things out since her husband, Norman’s, passing. “One step at a time… that’s what life is all about,” she said.

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