Tag Archives: Around the Bend

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Washington County proposed POWTS fee may be dead

The Washington County Land Use and Planning Committee will meet Thursday, Aug. 22 at 7:30 a.m. and one of the agenda items includes making a recommendation to the full County Board on the special charge tax assessment for the Private On-Site Wastewater Treatment System Maintenance Program.

The basic premise of the special tax would be to assess at $11 per parcel annually properties served by POWTS or $11 per system, whichever is greater based on the above cost estimate. Approximately 20,209 parcels (99.5%) would be assessed an $11 fee ($11 x 20,209= $222,299).

During a public hearing July 25, 2019 more than 50 people spoke against the special assessment and county officials read 46 pages of letters that also were against the proposal.

County Administrator Joshua Schoemann said he is going to make a recommendation at the August 22 meeting.

“At that meeting I will recommend to that committee to vote ‘No’ on implementing the POWTS fee,” he said.

During the Sept. 11 County Board meeting, Schoemann said he will again recommend the County Board vote ‘No’ on the POWTS fee.

“We’ve recognized the situation and the outcry and citizens clearly have no interest in doing the fee or the tax; call it what you want it’s a tax. So I had a budget workshop and I don’t think this board has the votes,” he said.

On the other hand, if the board does have the votes to pass the fee Schoemann said come October the County Board would have to pass the budget with the POWTS fee and that needs 18 votes. “I don’t think there’s 18 votes on the County Board to pass the budget with the fee in it,” he said. “So, the board is properly responding to the constituents, I’m trying to be responsive to the constituents; they don’t want the fee and we’re not going to implement the fee.”

Trend in Washington County government

While Schoemann said he will recommend a ‘No’ vote there has been a trend in county government lately to bring an issue back to the full County Board for a second vote, even if the item was initially defeated.

“That has happened about five times in the last 15 months,” said Schoemann.

One of the most recent instances was the county board’s vote against an elected executive director. While the item failed on a 13-13 vote, a couple of supervisors have revived the issue and put it back on the table.

Schoemann said it is up to the full County Board to decide on the special assessment POWTS fee, however one of the factors playing into the issue is timing.

“If the fee passes, we need time to put it on tax bills,” he said. “If it’s voted down in September then October is the last chance, they can do it and if it doesn’t come back in October then it can’t come back at all.

“I don’t expect it to come back… especially if I’m recommending, they vote no; but I can’t imagine someone would bring it back,” Schoemann said.

Informational meeting August 27 at Washington County Fair Park

After the July public hearing the county was scheduled to have an informational meeting about the POWTS proposal, however that meeting was cancelled.

Schoemann indicated an informational meeting has now been scheduled, but it will be after the Land Use and Planning Committee meeting August 22.

Please be advised that the County has rescheduled the Fiscal Health Informational Meeting for Tuesday, August 27 at 6 p.m. at the Washington County Fair Park Pavilion Exhibit Hall.   An update regarding the status of the proposed POWTS Special Assessment will be provided in addition to a discussion about the County’s fiscal health and budget.

“I want people to know what’s going on with the county fiscally,” said Schoemann.

In the past Schoemann has detailed how Washington County is “falling off a financial cliff.”

“That’s how the POWTS fee came up in the first place because there is a financial cliff. We’ve been directed not to raise taxes at all so fees or cuts is what we’re doing. I’m going to recommend the POWTS fee not be passed.”

2019 Allenton Parade dedicated to volunteer firefighter and EMT Bruce Ellis | By Ron Naab

The Allenton Annual Picnic Committee announced this year’s parade will be dedicated to Bruce Ellis with the Allenton Volunteer Fire Department.

Ellis was nominated for the Washington County American Legion Council for his outstanding contributions as an EMT to the department and those they serve.   Ellis won the county nomination and was then nominated for the Second District of the Wisconsin Department of the American Legion, which he won as well and was then nominated for State recognition.

On July 21 Ellis received the 2019 EMT of the Year award from the Wisconsin Department of American Legion. Ellis joined Allenton Volunteer Fire Department in January 2014; this was a result of Allenton FD responding to a call to help his grandson.

This the second time Ellis has been involved serving others as a firefighter and EMT; he served previously with Bark Lake Rescue.

Ellis has willingly taken courses to improve his skills to be an outstanding provider of emergency medical treatments.

According to the nomination letter, “Each time Bruce’s help and expertise has been requested, he has stepped up and offered to help, always with the statement ‘l will help with whatever you want me to do.’”

Ellis has served with many committees within the department from setting guidelines, sharing his skills, working with youngsters and purchasing equipment.

The Allenton Parade kicks off at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday, August 18. Watch for a live broadcast at Washington County Insider.

Egbert & Guido’s Citgo in West Bend has been demolished

The old Egbert & Guido’s Citgo station, 1300 E. Paradise Drive, in West Bend met its demise today as crews tore down the building on the corner of Paradise Drive and River Road.

It was Dec. 22, 2018 when owners George and Kathy Muth confirmed they had sold the business and building to Kwik Trip. “It wasn’t an easy decision, but it made sense,” said Kathy Muth.

The corner of northwest corner of Paradise Drive and River Road has been in the Muth family since 1847.

“That was always farm field,” said George Muth. “It was corn, soybeans and hay and I farmed it when I was young, and I was fifth generation to farm it.” George remembered all four corners were farm field and Paradise Drive was “a very skinny, one-lane road.”

Plans for the new east side Kwik Trip include a car wash, 20 fueling stations, and it’s anticipated the location will offer 20-25 jobs.

The convenience store will also be flipped and face River Road and the roundabout off Paradise Drive. It’s a different setup than what Egbert & Guido’s offered. Construction, according to Kwik Trip, is set to get underway in 2020.

There will soon be four Kwik Trips in West Bend with stores on Silverbrook Drive, S. Main Street and Decorah Road, Highway 33 east (the former East Side Mobil), and the store on Paradise Drive and River Road.

Halloween store to open this month in former Shopko building in West Bend

There are boxes and crates and grocery carts full of costumes and Halloween displays all waiting to be unwrapped at the former Shopko, 1710 S. Main Street, in West Bend. That’s as the empty big box store will open temporarily as the home to the new Spirit Halloween.

According to its website: Spirit Halloween has one single goal, to deliver the very best Halloween experience possible to all our guests. We are the largest seasonal Halloween retailer in the world and the premier destination for everything Halloween.

The store carries Halloween costumes, accessories, animatronics, décor and more. The district manager in West Bend Teri Kennedy said the franchise was headquartered in New Jersey. The Halloween supply store will only take up about a third of the front of the former Shopko building. The business started to unload stock August 5. Spirit Halloween is expected to open at the end of August and run through November.

Shopko stores across Wisconsin officially closed in June 2019.

Plans underway to move playground at Sandy Knoll County Park

About a dozen people turned out for the initial open house at Sandy Knoll Park to discuss adding a proposed 10-acre fenced-in dog exercise area. If approved this would be the second dog park in the Washington County Park System; the first was Homestead Howl Dog Park installed in 2018 in the Village of Germantown.

Comments at the open house ranged from the height and type of fence, whether there would be an added cost to get into the dog exercise area, who would monitor the dog park, would dogs need proof of rabies vaccines, would there be a small dog area and would a small pond at Sandy Knoll be included in the dog park. Eric Hyde, Washington County Park and Trail Manager, said the county received a nice five-figure donation to help pay for the setup of the dog park.

 

Playground changes at Sandy Knoll Park

One of the other topics during the meeting was about moving the children’s playground located at the entrance of Sandy Knoll. The idea would be to disassemble the setup and move the playground to another area at Sandy Knoll or possibly relocate it to Homestead Hollow in Germantown.

Hyde said moving the play area was in response to the recent release and placement of registered sex offender Kenneth Crass.

On July 23, 2019 Crass was released back to his home on Wallace Lake Road, which happens to be located next to the kid’s playground at Sandy Knoll Park.

In July, when Crass was released, Washington County Sheriff Martin Schulteis addressed his placement near an area with children. “I’ve been in touch with the County Parks Department and we’re looking at different options,” said Sheriff Schulteis. “Whether it’s signage or fencing; it’s certainly something we’re aware of.

“Aside from the children’s playground there’s a rental unit belonging to the county and they want to make sure renters know about the registered sex offender.”

The County Parks Department said it will be placing a notice at the rental unit, regarding a registered sex offender. A decision on the future location of the playground has yet to be determined.

West Bend School Board to hear Private Task Force report Monday, Oct. 14

The West Bend School Board voted to move its Committee of the Whole meeting from Oct. 7 to Oct. 14, 2019 so it can hear a report from the District Private Task Force which has been studying facility and operational efficiencies in the district.

The Task Force was formed in the wake of a failed referendum in April of 2019.  The goal of the referendum was the construction of a new K-4 elementary school in Jackson and safety and infrastructure enhancements at the high schools.

The group has been reviewing forecasted maintenance and capital improvement needs at the facilities, studying projected enrollment data and comparing new information to the District’s 25-year plan which was compiled almost 10 years ago. Task Force organizer Kraig Sadownikow will be ready to report October 14, 2019. He said it will take 60-90 minutes.

“We do not expect to make recommendations to the School Board. Instead, we will present findings within the context of the District’s long-range improvement plan,” Sadownikow said.  “The School Board was elected to make decisions.  With that in mind, we will offer our independent thoughts and findings, allowing the School Board to draw its own conclusions and take action accordingly.”

Task Force members are Kevin Steiner, Tim Schmidt, Kraig Sadownikow, Randy Stark, Ed Duquaine, Dan Garvey, Mike Chevalier, Owen Robinson, Chris Kleman, Chris Schmidt and the education team from Zimmerman Design Studios.  Members were chosen based on their design, construction, facilities management and communication expertise.

For additional information on the West Bend School District Private Task Force contact Kraig Sadownikow at www.teamacs.net.

9/11 Memorial in Kewaskum starting to take shape

The 9/11 Memorial in Kewaskum is starting to take shape. After more than 200 people attended a groundbreaking ceremony in June, work got underway to start constructing the Memorial which is located on the southeast corner of Fond du Lac Avenue and First Street.

“Primary in our goals is that this memorial will for generations to come, stand as a historical touchstone linking the past event of 9/11/2001 to the present,” said organizer Gordon Haberman.

“The memorial will be a physical structure which respectfully honors the memory of those lost that day and in the resulting conflicts afterwards. It will stand as an important source of information for young people in understanding the sacrifices of 9/11, yet also portray the strength, spirit and resolve of America.”

Former WBHS shop teacher Dick Trinkl has died

Richard (Dick) James Trinkl May 7, 1948 to August 13, 2019. Richard taught 35 years in West Bend Public Schools, the majority at Badger Middle School as a shop teacher. He will be remembered most for his love for Jesus, his family, and any person he met. A memorial service will be held at Crossway Church, W156N10041 Pilgrim Road, Germantown on Sunday, Aug. 18 with visitation at 2 p.m. and the service at 3 p.m.

Washington County 4-H Open House

Young people with an interest in developing leadership skills, volunteering in the community and looking for new and fun ways to learn are encouraged to attend an upcoming Washington County 4-H Open Houses. 4-H is a volunteer-driven organization offering a wide variety of research-based and youth development programs ranging from photography, cooking and raising livestock, to learning about STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) through robotics and more.

During the open houses, attendees will be able to meet 4-H club members and leaders, try out hands-on activities, check out the archery range (open for ages 8-19 on Aug. 21), and enjoy light refreshments.

Open House is Wednesday, August 21, 2019 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Washington County Fair Park, Small Animal Building, 3000 Pleasant Valley Road (Hwy PV), West Bend, WI 53095.

Hartford Union HS District CNA classroom ready for new school year | By Teri Kermendy

Hartford Union High School (HUHS) is excited to announce the CNA classroom is ready for the new school year.

For the first time students at HUHS can earn the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) certification as part of a normal school day and earn MPTC credits and elective credits.  The classroom was the final piece of this program.

The CNA course is a semester long course in which 15 students first semester are enrolled and 16 students second semester.  Students will earn three MPTC credits and 1 HUHS elective credit for taking this course.

“Having this course at HUHS is a huge convenience for our students,” said Jon Duhr, director of teaching and learning.  “In the past, students were driving to Beaver Dam to take this course and driving 45 minutes for nine weeks in the middle of winter.”

“This is a fantastic opportunity for students,” said Duhr.  “Once students complete the certification they can begin working as a CNA right away which is really important to our local health care facilities looking to fill those much-needed positions.  Students interested in pursuing a career in the medical field, can use this certification as a steppingstone for their future.”

The instructor for this course is Tina Cordell from Moraine Park Technical College.

“We’d like to thank all of the supporters for this project, without them this would not be possible,” said Duhr.

The equipment needed for the course were provided from funds from the Carl Perkins Grant, Aurora, (specifically Hailey Nenonen and Karen Bialas), Cheribini and from Medical Staff of Aurora Medical Center Washington County.

Updates & tidbits

-The deadline is August 30, 2019 to cast a sealed bid for a 2008 conversion van Interfaith Caregivers of Washington County is retiring from its fleet.  According to Interfaith “the vehicle has been well maintained and service records are available upon request.”  More information is at 262-365-0902.

– Horicon Bank’s free Shred Day is Saturday, Sept. 14 from 10 a.m. – noon. Horicon Bank, 1535 W. Paradise Drive, in West Bend will be collecting donations for the Wisconsin Honor Flight at its Shred Day event.

-Scouts chartered by the West Bend Moose Lodge will host “Experience the Adventure” at an Open House on Tuesday, August 27 from 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the West Bend Moose Lodge, 1721 Chestnut Street, West Bend. There will be interactive activities including camping, backpacking, cooking, pioneering (rope and knots), orienteering (map and compass) and more.

The Scouts recently returned from a week at summer camp at Ed Bryant Scout Reservation and a high adventure backpacking trip to Cloud Peak, Wyoming and will gladly share stories and photos about these recent adventures.

Scouting is a premier youth development program – preparing young people to become responsible citizens and make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes. Anyone with an interest in camping, the outdoors, developing leadership skills and service to the community is encouraged to attend.

-The Kettle Moraine Ice Center in West Bend has a try hockey free weekend Sept. 6-8, a women’s hockey tournament Sept. 13-15, a mini clinic specially designed for little kids and beginners the weekends of Sept. 21 and 28, and a girls only try hockey on October 5.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Bob’s Main Street Auto finds interesting face under the hood

It was not a normal day at Bob’s Main Street Auto & Towing after mechanics opened the hood of a Dodge Nitro 2007 and found a face staring back at them.

“We opened the hood and it looked at us for a quick second when everything got bright and then it scurried way back behind the steering shaft,” said service writer Greg Rate. “It kind of wedged itself back down in there and it took us a good 40 minutes to get it out unharmed.”

Rate said the animal was pretty scared. “We put some welding gloves on and tried to pull it out as softly as we could,” he said.

Initially Rate thought it was a raccoon. “Those are more common… or we’ve run into squirrels or mice or rodents because they like to chew on the plastic. We’ve also had a huge problem with them chewing on air filters, but a woodchuck is the last thing I would have expected,” he said.

Shop owners Bill and Laurie Rate made sure everyone, including the woodchuck, stayed safe throughout the process.

“It was less than a productive morning…. but it sure wasn’t a boring day,” said Rate.

The owner of the vehicle was asked whether he had a rodent issue by his home, and he admitted he saw a couple woodchucks running around; but he didn’t expect one to be under his hood.

The vehicle and its passenger made it to Bob’s Main Street Auto following an accident.

“The wheel of the vehicle came off on the highway and we towed it to the south store, and it sat in the shop a couple days. So that little guy had a pretty wild ride,” Rate said.

After safely removing the 10-to-15-pound woodchuck staff took it down the Eisenbahn State Trail and let it go.

Midas to reopen in West Bend

West Bend Auto Enterprises, owner of the Midas store in West Bend is currently in negotiations with a buyer.

“The business is temporarily closed; it’s in the process of being bought out by somebody else,” said a spokesperson for WB Auto Enterprises. “It will possibly remain a Midas store.”

Negotiations are currently underway. A spokesperson said they hope to close on the deal before October 2019.

The Midas store, 2334 W. Washington Street, closed July 20, 2019. A note on the door said, “warranties will be honored at other Midas locations.”

Also Auto Safety Center, 3700 W. Washington Street, in West Bend will also honor the Midas warranties.

ALDI to temporarily close in September for expansion construction

Watch for a change in signage outside ALDI, 1114 S. Main Street, of West Bend. The local grocery is going through an expansion on the west side of the store.

More warehouse storage space is being added. There is also some interior refrigeration work currently underway. The store was expected to close temporarily in September, around Labor Day, however that has been pushed back to mid-September possibly the week of Sept. 15. The closure is expected to last up to 30 days.

ALDI Corporation, which has 2.5 acres, acquired 2.47 acres of land from the adjacent owner (King Pin) for expansion.

The site plan is for a 2,440 square-foot commercial building addition located on the west side of the building with minor architectural building alterations proposed to the remaining building.

As a part of the site plan, the two existing storage buildings and the existing pavement within this area will be demolished to accommodate the expansion of the building.

 The parking lot will be not be altered.

 The area to be acquired from King Pin contains pavement and parking area that was originally used for the bowling alley use. The pavement will be removed and curbing will be installed. As a park of the site plan, the parking lot striping will be redone on the King Pin site to redefine the drive aisle and parking stalls in the area that is being altered by the land acquisition.

 The existing retaining wall will be modified to accommodate the new building addition.

 The building materials for the building addition will match and be consistent with the existing “St. Simon Blend” brick veneer. The existing building will receive the following upgrades:

o A tan accent band color changing to a slate gray color, at the entrance area above the windows.

o The building materials will change from an aluminum composite panel to a “Cedar (vintage wood)” looking fiber cement board.

o The “Food Market” signage on the east and north sides of the building will be removed and new “Aldi” signs will be replaced.

In 2017 ALDI announced a nationwide “plan to remodel and expand more than 1,300 U.S. stores by 2020.” Early plans indicate ALDI will spend “more than $37 million dedicated to enhancing stores in the Milwaukee-area.”

Deer Management Committee to request another controlled hunt in West Bend parks

The City of West Bend Deer Management Committee will appear before the Common Council at its next meeting to ask for backing for one more year of a controlled hunt in two city parks including Lac Lawrann Conservancy and Ridge Run.

There’s also going to be a request to fund a survey on Bicentennial Park and Silverbrook Creek Parkway. “We want the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture to see where the deer are located,” said District 1 alderman John Butschlick. “If we find the deer are in Bicentennial Park and Silverbrook Creek Parkway then we want to include those two areas in the upcoming hunt.”

Butschlick said the deer are extremely heavy on 18th Avenue especially near Miller Street and Hilltop Drive. “The deer trails in that area are just like runways,” he said.

The City of West Bend has allowed a managed hunt for the past two years. The first effort in 2017 was coordinated in house and included three bow hunters who spent five days in the park and shot a total of three deer.

In 2018 the city hired sharpshooters on a managed hunt designed to remove 30 deer from Ridge Run Park and Lac Lawrann Conservancy.

The City applied for a $5,000 Urban Wildlife Damage Abatement and Control grant to help offset the expense which totaled a little more than $9,000. The city is targeting a reduction in deer numbers to reduce deer damage to habitat, property and car/deer collisions.

Some in the community have questioned whether the deer are still a problem and Butschlick said he is still fielding calls about deer cleaning out bird feeders and ravaging flowers and gardens.

Country Inn & Suites in West Bend sold…. again

Country Inn & Suites, 2000 Gateway Court, in West Bend has been sold. According to records in the city assessor’s office West Bend Lodging Inc. sold to JNP Management LLC, Jatin Patel, for $2,550,000.

History on the sale of the three-story hotel overlooking Highway 45 shows West Bend Properties sold to West Bend Lodging LLC on Dec. 29, 2015 for $1,538,750. The property had a 2015 assessed value of $2,189,900. Previous owner Jim Walker bought the property Oct. 1, 2007 for $3,350,000. The 58 room Country Inn & Suites originally opened in May 1998.

WB Plan Commission approves rezoning and 15 new duplexes for Cedar Community

Four people spoke Tuesday night during the public hearing before the West Bend Plan Commission in regard to a proposed rezoning and 15-unit duplex housing development on 101 Cedar Ridge Drive, just north of the Cedar Ridge Campus.

All who spoke were generally in favor of the project with only one neighbor concerned about keeping a tree line between his backyard and the new senior living housing.

Joan Adler lives on Kilkenny Court in West Bend. Adler, who used to be the past president of the Cedar Community Board of Directors, lives right behind where the 15 duplexes are proposed. “My main concern is maintaining the tree line between our houses and the Ridge and I’m concerned about bright lights and the quality of houses and maintaining access to easily get into Ridge Run Park,” said Adler. “Our first choice is to have nothing ever built there but that’s unrealistic, so I’ll speak in favor.”

Tom Boyer also lives on Kilkenny Court. He was concerned about the setback. “My house has a 57-foot setback. I walked off from the lot line to the end of the tree line. That means houses on the north will have 27 feet of green space. I’m concerned about the set back on northern ridge to the north. Neighbors want to keep tree line,” he said.

Bill Hansen is a second-generation resident at Cedar Ridge as is his wife. Hansen spoke in favor of the project citing the quality of care Cedar Ridge has with its residents and properties.  “There’s not a match to it. The site plan, beautiful trees and pond. The property is over 30 years old because it’s so well taken care of,” he said.

Bill Myers lives on Village Drive and has also been on the Cedar Community Board of Directors. “I urge support of the amendment and zoning change,” he said. “I believe the homes will be very attractive and similar to what’s at Elkhart Lake. This will be a good addition to West Bend.”

The Plan Commission voted unanimously in favor of the rezoning and for the development plans. Adam Hertel with American Construction Services said he will begin drawings and house plans. Hertel said the development of the units will be done in stages with construction hopefully starting in early fall.

The proposal still must be approved by the West Bend Common Council.

Cedar Communities submitted a request to consider a comprehensive land use plan change and a zoning change for approximately 9.8 acres located at 113 Cedar Ridge Drive. The request is for the northern portion of the 49-acre parcel. The request is to consider a change in land use from the existing multi-family residential to two family residential land use for the northern portion of the Cedar Ridge Campus.

“Cedar Community has a years-long waiting list for active seniors who are looking for larger apartments and homes,” said Julie Gabelmann, Cedar Community Vice President of Resident Experience. “The twin homes we hope to build will help meet that growing demand, while providing the natural beauty of the 50-acre Cedar Ridge Campus, and the access to all of Cedar Community’s services and amenities.”

WI-33 in Allenton to be closed for 5 days at end of August          By Ron Naab

Goods sources have indicated that the end of August, WI-33 and the Canadian National Railroad Crossing will be closed for a five-day period to have a FULL renewal of rails, ties, ballast and approach surfaces.  This will be a project of the Canadian National NOT the town of Addison or Washington County Highway Department.

According to Canadian National they believe to be doing a FULL renewal (rail, ties, ballast, surface) requiring a M-F closure at the end of August at the STH 33 crossing in Allenton.

Fleet Farm in West Bend to hire more than 150 Team Members

Fleet Farm is announcing plans to hire more than 150 team members to expand the staff for the new Fleet Farm in West Bend. The new store on Highway 33 will more than double in size when it opens in November. The new store is less than two miles from the existing store and will offer a greatly expanded breadth and depth of products and services.

Company representatives are interviewing for full- and part-time team members to staff a variety of departments throughout the store. In addition to the sales floor team, the new West Bend Fleet Farm will hire for specialty roles to work in the automotive service center and Fleet Farm will offer a gas station.

“Fleet Farm is honored to be a part of the West Bend Community for nearly 60 years,” said Robert Foster, general manager. “We are proud to reinvest into this loyal community, open a greatly expanded store and add team members to this talented workforce.” The new West Bend Fleet Farm will include a 190,000 square-foot store and a 7,000 square-foot convenience store.

Due to applicant volume, interested job candidates are encouraged to search job opportunities and complete the short, 7-minute online. As applications are reviewed, chosen candidates will be notified by email to self-select a convenient date and time for their in-person interview. In addition to a competitive wage and benefits package, Fleet Farm employees also receive a generous employee discount.

“Our goal is to hire and train a knowledgeable team who can speak to the extensive product assortment at the new Fleet Farm, and retail experience is always a plus,” said Jackie Walz, Regional Human Resources Manager.

The new West Bend Fleet Farm is located at 3815 West Washington St. West Bend, WI 53095.

Trees leveled outside Holy Angels Rectory in West Bend

There’s a new look to the landscape outside Holy Angels Rectory in West Bend as work crews were on site early Wednesday morning leveling a couple trees and pulling up bushes.

Wollner Excavating pulled a permit on Tuesday, Aug. 6 to take out a 60-foot pine tree and other landscaping as the parish prepares to upgrade its sewer lateral and extend it to the street.

John Butschlick is one of the Holy Angels crew members helping with the cleanup. He said the pine was nearly at its life expectancy. Eighth Avenue in front of Holy Angels Parish is currently under construction. City Engineer Max Mareschal said letters were sent to property owners on Eighth Avenue encouraging them to upgrade their laterals at this time if needed since the street was open at this time.

The four blocks of street construction includes sanitary sewer installation, water main installation, storm sewer installation, roadway excavation, curb and gutter installation, curb ramp replacement, roadway reconstruction and restoration of disturbed areas. The $1.3 million project is expected to take five months. It started in May 2019 and should be completed in October, depending on weather.

Hartford Plan Commission to hold public hearing on development of new TID

The Hartford Plan Commission meets Monday, August 12 and one of the items on the agenda is approval of a new sign for Puebla’s Kitchen, 28 E. Jackson Street.

The wall sign will be placed above the main entrance door. Puebla’s Kitchen will be in a blue font with the words ‘Authentic Mexican Cuisine’ in black. The new signage is below.

At 7 p.m. the Plan Commission will hold a public hearing as it looks to rezone three properties; two of the rezoning requests will be to change from A-1 Agricultural District to M-3 General Industrial District, the third request will be to change from M-4 Industrial Park District to M-3 General Industrial District.

Hartford City Administrator Steve Volker said the rezoning is basically to create a connection between two roads that currently do not meet; once complete it will expand the industrial park by 62 acres.

“We have someone interested in building so we’re putting the infrastructure in the roads including water and sewer, electric and storm sewer,” he said. “The total cost of the project is roughly $3 million. In the big picture this will help bring one or two more buildings to the industrial park as well as open the door for companies to build on the remaining acres.”

The Plan Commission is working to develop a new Tax Incremental Financing District in the 1500 block of Innovation Way. According to the executive summary “The creation of TID 12 is intended to allow for development of industrial park land between the Dodge Industrial Park and the Western Industrial Park and facilitate the completion of multiple public purpose projects for the City of Hartford.”

Monday’s Plan Commission meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers at Hartford City Hall, 109 N. Main Street. The meeting is open to the public.

Historic West Bend Theatre sign relighting Sept. 5

 The iconic West Bend sign in front of the Historic West Bend Theatre will be re-lit Thursday, Sept. 5.  As part of the “Light Up the Bend” ceremony, the board of directors of Historic West Bend Theatre, Inc. (HWBT) ask the community to help fund the renovation of the 1929 Art Deco structure into a performing arts center and community gathering place.

“We have come a long way toward raising the necessary funds, a goal of about $3.5 million, but we need everyone’s help,” said Nic Novaczyk, HWBT president.

The relighting event will start at 5:30 p.m. Former employees of the theatre will be recognized and a short history will be presented. The actual re-lighting will be at 6 p.m.

Poblocki Sign Company took down the perimeter-lit sign over the marquee in December 2018 for a complete overhaul. Called “the blade,” it will to be re-hung in mid-August in time for the relighting.

Supporters will have three ways to contribute to the restoration campaign. The first is to buy a bulb for $100 to help pay for the refurbished “blade,” selling out the words “WEST BEND” in capital letters with 470 bulbs, and the marquee, which is lit by an additional 194 bulbs, for a total of 664.

The second part of the campaign is the sale of shares in the non-profit corporation for $200 apiece. “It worked for the Green Bay Packers, and we hope the sale of stock works for the theatre,” said Dan Dineen, HWBT board member and corporate counsel.

The stock offers no dividends or capital gains. “It does offer a sense of ownership in the restored community asset,” he added. When you buy a share of “The Bend,” your name will be placed on our donor board.”

The shareholders can vote annually for one member of the board of directors. Twenty-four shares have already been sold.

The third community fundraiser is the sale of 325 seats at $300 apiece. The “Seat the Bend” dollars will allow the purchase of comfortable period-appropriate seats for many kinds of events.

There are 125 seats on the main floor and 200 seats in the balcony. The original 1929 movie and vaudeville house had 400 seats on the main floor and 227 in the balcony. Patrons can combine all three donations in a $500 package for one light bulb, one share of stock and one seat.

Contributors can make their donations on-line at www.historicwestbendtheatre.com or in person at 102 N. Main Street, West Bend.

All donors will receive a booklet on the history of the former “movie palace.”

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Property sale price released following Kwik Trip purchase in West Bend

The sale price has been listed as Kwik Trip has purchased property on E. Washington Street and River Road for the stores fourth location in West Bend.

According to records in the city assessor’s office Kwik Trip Inc. closed on the purchase of three parcels July 19, 2019.

The largest property, the Mobil gas station, 1610 E. Washington Street, sold for $1,301,000.

The Mobil station was owned by Bob Yahr and his family. The seller was listed as BC Properties 1016 Washington LLC.

Two lots next door were also sold; the 3.33-acre parcel belonging to Hallmark Leasing sold for $299,000 and the .772-acre lot on N. River Road belonged to Koness Properties LLC and sold to Kwik Trip for $100,000.

The total for all three parcels equals $1.7 million.

According to the clerk in the city assessor’s office the last two parcels did not have addresses because they are vacant lots.

The Mobil station on Highway 33 East in West Bend closed Tuesday, July 16 as Bob Yahr sold the property to Kwik Trip. “We built that store in 1992,” said owner Bob Yahr. “That was the Lang farm and the Convenient store was across the street.”

Yahr said it was a hard decision to sell the gas station just east of River Road. “My brother and father, Steve and Curt, opened the store and I was the manager for three years, so I really know the customers,” he said. “The gas station industry is changing so fast; if you’re not a big chain you’re going to get wiped out.”

Yahr said Kwik Trip liked his site because of its location. “When Kwik Trip comes in, they like to have a store on each artery coming into town,” he said.

In a systematic fashion Yahr ticks off the Kwik Trip locations in West Bend:  Silverbrook Drive, S. Main Street, east end of Paradise Drive with the former Egbert & Guidos and now his store on E. Hwy 33. The City of West Bend is considering putting in a traffic signal at Hwy 33 and Schoenhaar Drive.

Early indications are Kwik Trip will not start converting the Mobil nor the old Egbert & Guido’s until 2020.

No shuttle service from GO Riteway from Washington County to Wisconsin State Fair

For years GO Riteway Transportation Group helped folks from Washington County get down to the Wisconsin State Fair. It was an easy ride back and forth for a reasonable cost.

That’s not happening this year.

“We’re not able to do it this year again,” said Lisa from GO Riteway in Richfield. “The ridership has been down, and we just can’t do it again this year.”

In 2018 the local bus company issued a statement: “GO Riteway has decided that due to the underutilization of our shuttle service to the Wisconsin State Fair, we will no longer provide this service.”

Neighbors are not too thrilled; many say it was super convenient.

The Wisconsin State Fair does provide some options. There are shuttles and Freeway Flyers that run out of Park & Ride lots, but it looks like you must get as close to Brown Deer Road or jump into neighboring Waukesha County if you want to take advantage of that.

Many said there is a very convenient Park & Ride at Watertown Plank Road, however it’s advised you get there early as it fills up fast. The Wisconsin State Fair runs Aug. 1 – 11.

New restaurant opening this week in Germantown

In May 2019 a story on WashingtonCountyInsider.com highlighted a new restaurant opening in Germantown.

The Precinct, by Jodi Janissee-Kanzenbach, was taking an old-school location (the former Germantown Police Department) and turning it into a new trendy eatery.  The location is just around the corner from Barley Pop Pub, N116 W16137 Main Street.

The restaurant is now set to open and Janissee-Kanzenbach has received a fantastic write up by Lori Fredrich from onmilwaukee.com  A portion of the article is below.

A brighter, modern space

“I opened my first restaurant by the seat of my pants, but I wanted to do this the right way,” says Janisse-Kanzenbach, who says the decision to close Cafe Soeurette and open The Precinct was a combination of necessity and serendipity

“Operating a restaurant in a leased space for so many years made eventually owning our own building pretty important to us. We wanted the opportunity to build a concept from the ground up, and we loved the idea of making the restaurant accessible to a larger market.”

To find the right spot, she enlisted the help of Deb Reinbold at the Economic Development of Washington County, who assisted her in identifying locations with favorable demographics and affordable real estate.

Along the way, a business partnership developed. Reinbold and her husband Don – who also own and operate the Barley Pop Pub & Restaurant in Germantown – brought on Janisse-Kanzenbach and her husband Cory as operating partners for their restaurant.

They also offered up a long vacant building – which once housed the Germantown Police Department – as the site for Janisse-Kanzenbach’s new restaurant. It was a win-win.

“We have a dedicated parking lot,” she adds. “The restaurant is ADA accessible, and we’ve built the restaurant that we really wanted.”

The restaurant sports an eclectic industrial chic vibe that’s underscored by raw brick, visible steel beams and exposed ductwork. The look is softened by details like warm wood flooring and walls painted in vibrant shades of blue, purple and deep teal.

West Bend School District Private Task Force making progress | By Kraig Sadownikow

The West Bend School District Private Task Force (WBSDTF) continues its work and is on schedule to report findings to the school board in October of this year.

The Task Force was formed in the wake of a failed referendum in April of 2019.  The goal of the referendum was the construction of a new K-4 elementary school in Jackson and safety and infrastructure enhancements at the high schools.

“We have formed sub-committees who are focusing on the key areas we identified during our tours and discussions with staff.” stated task force organizer and City of West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow.  “Elementary School Deployment, priorities at the High Schools and Operational Efficiencies are the sub-committee topics”, he said.

The Task Force added research of Decorah and Fair Park Elementary Schools to its original tours of Jackson Elementary and the High Schools.  The group has been reviewing forecasted maintenance and capital improvement needs at the facilities, studying projected enrollment data and comparing new information to the District’s 25-year plan which was compiled almost 10 years ago.

“We are looking to see if the input data used for the 25-year plan is still valid and accurate.  We want to make sure our findings use the most current information available,” said Task Force member Chris Schmidt.

The Task Force is comprised of district taxpayers, many of whom did not know one another prior to their service.  Local columnist and Task Force member Owen Robinson recognized, “It has been an uplifting experience to witness a group of people from different backgrounds and with diverse perspectives work so hard and well together.  Our shared goal is to ensure the WBSD provides an exceptional education for our kids and those kids who follow.  This drives our purpose.”

WBDSPTF members are Kevin Steiner, Tim Schmidt, Kraig Sadownikow, Randy Stark, Ed Duquaine, Dan Garvey, Mike Chevalier, Owen Robinson, Chris Kleman, Chris Schmidt and the education team from Zimmerman Design Studios.  Members were chosen based on their design, construction, facilities management and communication expertise.

For additional information on the West Bend School District Private Task Force contact Kraig Sadownikow at www.teamacs.net.

Public hearing for expansion at Cedar Community is August 6

There will be a public hearing at the Tuesday, Aug. 6 West Bend Plan Commission meeting as Cedar Communities asked for a change in 9.8 acres of land located at 113 Cedar Ridge Drive, Cedar Ridge Campus.

The recommendation was to change the land use from multi-family residential to two-family residential. Below are details from James Reinke, Business & Development Planner for the City of West Bend.

Cedar Communities has submitted a request to consider a comprehensive land use plan change and a zoning change for approximately 9.8 acres located at 113 Cedar Ridge Drive. The request is for the northern portion of the 49-acre parcel.

The request is to consider a change in land use from the existing multi-family residential to two family residential land use for the northern portion of the Cedar Ridge Campus.

“Cedar Community has a years-long waiting list for active seniors who are looking for larger apartments and homes,” said Julie Gabelmann, Cedar Community Vice President of Resident Experience. “The twin homes we hope to build will help meet that growing demand, while providing the natural beauty of the 50-acre Cedar Ridge Campus, and the access to all of Cedar Community’s services and amenities.”

The surrounding existing land uses are; residential and agricultural town uses to the west and south, single family and two-family residential uses to the north, and park, recreation and open space to the east. Given the surrounding existing uses the size of the parcel and the overall density, staff finds the proposed request to be an acceptable alternative for land use. The two-family residential use would be used as a transition from the existing multi-family use to the single-family use. The possible resulting residential density is less than that permitted under the current land use and zoning designation.

If the Comprehensive Plan change is endorsed by the Plan Commission, a zoning amendment to rezone that portion of the parcel will be requested to change the zoning from RM-4 Multi-Family Residential District to RD-2 Two-Family Residential and to add a Planned Unit Development Overlay (PUD) District.

At the same meeting, a second public hearing would be held for the rezoning of that portion of the property from RM-4 Multi-Family Residential district to RD-2 Two-Family Residential District and a PUD overlay district.

pc: Adam Hertel, American Construction Services

Cedar Community said the expansion is necessary considering the demand in the house market for active seniors.

Washington County POWTS information meeting rescheduled

Washington County Parks Department is rescheduling the POWTS Special Assessment Informational Session scheduled for Tuesday, August 6 at 6 p.m. at Richfield Volunteer Fire Station #1 due to concerns about seating and room capacity.

Following the public hearing the County has reason to believe a larger location is needed.

“We feel it is extremely important to ensure the public has the opportunity to learn more about the public policy surrounding this discussion and participate further,” said Jamie Ludovic, Central Services Director at Washington County.

The meeting will be rescheduled prior to any County Board action on the subject but the Land Use and Planning Committee may discuss the item at its committee meeting August 22.

Attendance totals for MOWA Art & Chalk Fest top 20,000+ | By Jessica Wildes

The Museum of Wisconsin Art (MOWA) presented its third annual Art & Chalk Fest on Saturday, July 27 and Sunday, July 28, 2019.

This free, outdoor arts festival featured a juried selection of 60+ fine artists selling their work and 17 chalk artists from across the nation creating ephemeral masterpieces. The museum was also free for the entire weekend.  This is the second year that MOWA has welcomed more than 20,000 visitors to the festival.

“Art & Chalk Fest 2019 was an extraordinary success. The new MOWA Gardens and West Bend Riverwalk East provided an expansive space for visitors to enjoy and stay for an entire weekend,” said MOWA Executive Director | CEO Laurie Winters.

Art & Chalk Fest featured a juried selection of fine artists selling original, handmade artwork in a variety of media: basketry, ceramics, fiber, fine art, furniture, glass, jewelry, leather, mixed media, photography, and wood. Visitors could shop from one-of-a-kind items and stop by each booth to meet the artists.

The museum parking lot became a concrete canvas for chalk artists to create ephemeral masterpieces, many of which were interactive and offered a three-dimensional illusion. Festival attendees also voted for their favorite chalk artworks.

MOWA was free and open to the public for the entire weekend of Art & Chalk Fest. The summer exhibition, Among the Wonders of the Dells: Photography, Place, Tourism, took visitors on a trip through 150 years of photography by eight historical and contemporary artists, telling the story of how the Wisconsin Dells transformed from remote natural wonder to the “Waterpark Capital of the World” and the state’s largest tourist attraction.

Art activities for all ages were offered throughout the festival. Attendees created their own chalk drawings outside on Veterans Avenue and took a break from the heat inside the museum with interactive art projects. In addition to art, Art & Chalk Fest featured live music and entertainment, food vendors, and a beer garden.

Since last year’s festival, MOWA’s surrounding four-acre green space transformed into spectacularly landscaped gardens. The MOWA Gardens include a field for activities, 800 quaking aspen trees, 1,200 hydrangeas, outdoor sculptures, and interconnected walkways perfect for wayfinding or meandering. It’s a must-see destination in the heart of downtown West Bend and is framed by the stunning Milwaukee Riverwalk, white footbridges to shops and restaurants, and Eisenbahn State Trail.

Ozaukee Christian School closes on property purchase in Town of Trenton

Ozaukee Christian School has closed on its property purchase.

“The prayers of God’s people have leveled the mountains before us,” said Ozaukee Christian School administrator Kris Austin.

Ozaukee Christian School will open in the Town of Trenton, 1214 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.”

Kris Austin submitted an update on where the school is about opening and registration:

We are currently working hard on cleaning out the building to prepare it for the fall. Due to time constraints, we have tweaked our original building plans so that we occupy the west portion of the building for this first year. That will allow us to continue working on the remainder of the building for the following year.

We have re-worked our school calendar to accommodate our workers. The first day of school is now Monday, Sept. 16. Our last day of school is one week later, June 5.

Other days throughout the year are now student instructional days as well.

We have enjoyed a warm welcome from the Town of Trenton and West Bend. We are anxious to serve families seeking a non-denominational school option in both Ozaukee and Washington Counties. We have a K3 – 8th Grade OPEN HOUSE on Tuesday, August 6. Because our building will not be ready for guests yet, Calvary Assembly has graciously offered us the use of its sanctuary that evening.

Jackson PD to host National Night Out | By Officer Jennifer Gerke

The Jackson Police Department will be hosting its first National Night Out on August 6, 2019 at Hickory Lane Park from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

National Night Out is an annual community-building event that promotes strong police-community partnerships and safety.

We are excited to announce we have a fun-filled family night planned! A variety of emergency vehicles will be on display from Jackson PD, Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Wisconsin State Patrol, and Jackson Fire Department.

We are kicking off National Night Out with a Flight for Life helicopter landing! The helicopter will be landing at 5:20 p.m.  (dependent on calls for service) and staying for about an hour.

In addition to all the emergency vehicles on display, there will be other local vendors providing information on a variety of safety related topics.

There will also be a free children’s raffle for a chance to win one of 10 bicycles. All the bicycles will include a helmet. We will also be giving away gun locks, fingerprint/ID kits for kids, and goodie bags containing coloring books and other items.

No need to eat dinner beforehand, Jackson Community Center will be on-hand and selling some grilled deliciousness. Plan on bringing your family to Hickory Park to join us for this fun-filled night.

This is our first time hosting a National Night Out event and we’re hoping for a great turnout from our community. We have some great prizes to give out so please join us at this family-friendly event on August 6.

Pioneer Kids Day at History Center of Washington Co.

On Thursday, August 8 from 9 a.m. to noon at The History Center of Washington County, children entering 1st – 5th grade are invited to travel back to a time when Wisconsin was part of the frontier in our nation’s expansion westward.

Activities include a blacksmith demonstration, log cabin construction, cornbread baking, and a group sing along. Cost: $8 per child after Aug. 1.

Cedar Community annual Butterfly Release is Saturday, August 17

The annual Cedar Community Butterfly Release on Saturday, Aug. 17 is an uplifting celebration of life where friends and families join in the release of hundreds of butterflies, honoring their loved ones. Guests enjoy musical entertainment, an activity area for all ages, memorial wall and food and beverages available for purchase.

Admission with one butterfly: $5 (six and older) Five and under receive free admission and no butterfly.

Kettle Moraine Symphony schedule for 2019-2020 season

During the 2019-20 season the Kettle Moraine Symphony is touring Washington County to take advantage of four of the six great performing arts facilities available in the county. A free bus for non-drivers will again be available for each concert.

September 29 at 3 p.m. – Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School Performing Arts Center

Britten: “The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra” narrated by Judge Andrew Gonring

Vivaldi: “Autumn” from “The Four Seasons” with WBHS Chamber Strings

Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4

November 3 at 3 p.m. -The Silver Lining Arts Center at West Bend High School

Veterans Concert –  Robert Lowden: “Armed Forces Salute”

Gershwin: “An American in Paris”  Dvořák: Symphony No. 9 “From the New World”

February 23 at 3 p.m. – Kewaskum Performing Arts Center

“Chamber” Orchestra Concert –  Mozart: Symphony No. 40 Strauss: Serenade No. 7

Beethoven: Symphony No. 8

May 3 at 3 p.m. – Location to be announced Winds & Percussion

Claude T. Smith: “Flight” (high school bands collaboration project)

Rachmaninoff: Symphony No. 2 (full orchestra)

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Billy Sims BBQ to open in West Bend

A new BBQ restaurant will open before the end of the year in West Bend.

Clay Covert is opening a Billy Sims Barbecue in the Washington Plaza, 1442 W. Washington Street. It’s the strip mall on the north side of the road that includes Little Caesar’s Pizza, Subway, and China Town.

Covert’s store would be on the east end of the strip mall in the former AT&T location.  “I have the plans done and they’re with the city,” he said.

A resident of Slinger, Covert previously ran his own marketing firm. “I’m going to use that marketing experience and develop the franchise,” he said.

A native of Detroit, Covert was familiar with former NFL player and Heisman Trophy winner Billy Sims. “He played for the Detroit Lions and a few years ago he partnered with someone and decided to open a couple restaurants and franchise them,” said Covert. “This is a small, up-and-coming franchise with stores primarily in Oklahoma, Kansas and a couple in Detroit, Iowa and Colorado but this will be the first foray in Wisconsin.”

Covert describes it as a “southern BBQ chain” that features pulled pork, brisket, turkey, chicken and ribs. “One of the unique things they serve is baloney and what really sets it apart is all the meat is smoked with pecan wood; it gives it a sweeter taste,” he said.

During his research Covert focused on the West Bend area because he wanted “a community that would be big enough to support the restaurant, but not Milwaukee.”

“West Bend seemed like the perfect choice because it’s close to where I live, it’s a good size city and one of the greatest things is nobody really specializes in barbecue in this area,” he said.

The franchise format is considered “fast casual.”

“There will be plenty of seating, carry out and we will do a lot of catering,” he said. “The style is similar to a Qdoba where you place your order, go down the line and get your food.”

Covert is expected to employ about 15 part timers and is expected to open in late fall.

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

Registered sex offender to live across from children’s play area at Sandy Knoll Park

Neighbors by Sandy Knoll Park on Wallace Lake Road and Trenton Road in the Town of Trenton are receiving information today from the Washington County Sheriff’s Department regarding a registered sex offender moving into the area.

Washington Co. Sheriff’s Sgt. Michael Hennes is visiting neighbors with an information sheet about Kenneth E. Crass who will be released from prison July 23, 2019.

Crass was convicted in 2014 of five counts of possession of child pornography. The Sheriff’s notice said Crass will reside at 7150 N. Trenton Road.

Neighbor Tim Wollak has lived by Sandy Knoll Park for nearly four years. He said he understands the “rehabilitation” process but questions the choice of location.

“It’s completely unacceptable,” said Wollak.  “This playground abuts the property of a convicted sex offender. I am not sure how it was even remotely considered a good location by those involved.”

A release will be posted Wednesday, July 17 from the Washington County Sheriff’s Department. In it Sheriff Martin Schulteis states, “Kenneth E. Crass will have numerous rules and restrictions to follow including wearing a live tracking GPS unit. The GPS monitoring unit will have exclusion zones set up alerting WI-DOC if there is a violation of the exclusion zone rules. One exclusion zone will be Sandy Knoll Co. Park.”

Wollak believes there are holes in the monitoring process. “What if a child wanders on to his property or if the technology stops working,” he said. “The GPS unit does not prevent a crime from occurring, it simply alerts the agent he left his property. Furthermore, it appears he will be able to view the children’s play area from his property which is very concerning as he was convicted of five counts of possessing child pornography.”

The release from Schulteis also states Crass’s “criminal history places him in a classification level which reflects a low potential to re-offend.”

The release given to neighbors by Sgt. Michael Hennes also said, “This sex offender has served the prison sentence imposed on him by the courts. He is NOT wanted by law enforcement at this time. This notification is not intended to increase fear, but rather it is our belief that an informed public is a safer public.”

Hennes said there is one Public Relations D.A.R.E. officer, Deputy William Niehus, who visits registered sex offenders in Washington County twice a year.

According to Wisconsin Department of Corrections Sex Offender Registry there are 195 registered sex offenders living in Washington County.

Crass is scheduled to be released from prison Tuesday, July 23, 2019. He will be on probation until July 29, 2024.

A note of clarification: In 2014 Crass pleaded guilty to five counts of possession of child pornography, however a check of Wisconsin Circuit Court Access shows there were five additional Felony D charges of possession of child pornography. According to CCAP those charges were dismissed but read in.

Crass appeared before Washington County Judge James Muehlbauer.

Washington Co. Sheriff said registered sex offender will live by children’s play area at Sandy Knoll Park in Town of Trenton

The Washington County Sheriff’s Department is issuing more information regarding a registered sex offender who will be released and living at a home next to the kid’s playground at Sandy Knoll Park.

Clare Hendricks from the State Department of Corrections offered a bit of insight on how Crass will be monitored once he is released.

Our top priority as the Department of Corrections is to ensure the safety of the public while assisting those in our care. We encourage anyone that suspects an individual is not complying with their rules of supervision or is acting unlawfully to reach out to local law enforcement and the Division of Community Corrections.

Mr. Crass is expected to be released from prison on 7/23/19 and will be living in Trenton, WI. He is required to meet with his probation officer every week. He will be on GPS monitoring and will not allowed in any parks next to or near his residence.

Mr. Crass is required to register with the Wisconsin Sex Offender Registry. He is on standard sex offender community supervision rules including he may not have unsupervised contact with minors, may not enter taverns, bars and liquor stores, may not use an alias, and may not have contact with previous victims.

Craig Hoeppner leaving for Oconomowoc Parks Department

West Bend Park, Recreation and Forestry director Craig Hoeppner is leaving West Bend to take a similar job in Oconomowoc.

On Tuesday, July 16 the City of Oconomowoc approved Hoeppner as its new director of Parks, Rec and Forestry. The job was posted May 17 at a salary between $90,790 to $116,730.

Hoeppner will replace Oconomowoc Park and Rec director John Kelliher, who recently left for a similar position in Brookfield.

Hoeppner has been with the City of West Bend since 2004. A couple standout projects where he played an integral part include the completion of the east side of the Downtown Riverwalk, helping oversee construction in 2018 of the basketball/pickleball/volleyball courts at Regner Park and of course the launch of the popular Dirty Ninja Mud Run.

In 2016 Hoeppner received the “Professional Award of Merit,” the highest award given by the Wisconsin Park & Recreation Association to a park and recreation professional in the State of Wisconsin.  Hoeppner was the second person in the West Bend Park and Rec Department to receive the Professional Award of Merit. Juliene Hefter also received the award and she began her career as Manager of Recreation Services for the City of West Bend.

In 2017 Hoeppner was a co-recipient of the Betty Pearson Community Leadership Award along with Mike Nowack.

West Bend City Administrator Jay Shambeau said he will fill in the position in the interim along with West Bend Park and Forestry Superintendent Mike Jentsch.

St. Lucas Lutheran to Host National Night Out Block Party August 6 

On Tuesday, August 6, neighbors in Kewaskum and Washington County are invited to join forces with thousands of communities nationwide for the 36th Annual National Night Out crime and drug prevention event. National Night Out which is sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch and cosponsored locally by St. Lucas Lutheran Church and School, will involve over 16,790 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities, and military bases around the world.  In all, over 38.6 million people are expected to participate in “America’s Night Out Against Crime.”

National Night Out is designed to: (1) Heighten crime and drug prevention awareness; (2) Generate support for, and participation in, local anticrime efforts; (3) Strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships; and (4) Send a message to criminals letting them know neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.

A block party for our whole community will be hosted Tuesday, August 6, 5:30- 8:30 p.m. at St. Lucas Lutheran Church and School, 1410 Parkview Drive. Parkview Drive will be closed and activities will take place in the church parking lot and the school grounds. Handicapped Parking will be available along the alley between Parkview Drive and Bilgo Lane. Bring a lawn chair and stay a while. Food and refreshments will be available.  Free entertainment for children will include a bounce house and various games.

The Kewaskum Police Department and Kewaskum Fire Department will have equipment on display. The West Bend Community Band will perform at 6 p.m.  The Kewaskum Big Band will follow at 7:30 p.m. Both groups will perform in the church parking lot. In case of rain, the event will be held in the St. Lucas Lutheran School Gymnasium.  On National Night Out, we invite neighborhoods nationwide to join us and “give crime a going away party.”

Students from Washington Co. make Dean’s List at UW-Parkside

Lauren Treptow of Kewaskum, WI was named to the Dean’s and Provost’s Lists at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside for the Fall 2018 semester.

Alexa Bingen of Slinger, WI was named to the Dean’s List at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside for the Fall 2018 semester.

Jodi Simmelink of West Bend, WI was named to the Dean’s and Provost’s Lists at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside for the Fall 2018 semester.

To qualify for the Dean’s List, students must earn at least a 3.5 grade-point average. To qualify for the Provost’s List, students must earn at least a 3.8 grade-point average.

Postponed 2018 Property Taxes                       By Jane Merten Washington Co. Treasurer

The Washington County Treasurer would like to remind taxpayers their postponed/second installment 2018 property taxes are due on or before July 31, 2019.

If you are paying by check, please make sure that the numeric and the written portions of the check are the same and that your check is signed otherwise the check will be returned, and this could result in interest and penalty charges, if postmarked after the due date.  Postdated checks will not be held and will be processed the day that they are received.  Checks should be mailed to the Washington County Treasurer, PO Box 1986, West Bend, Wisconsin, 53095.  If you require a receipt, please enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

The County Treasurer encourages mailing your property tax payments early and not waiting until the last week of July.  Mailing your payment early helps make sure the USPS postmark is timely and provides greater opportunity to correct errors before the deadline. “The cost of missing the July 31 deadline is severe.  Under state law, interest and penalty charges are 1.5% per month back to Feb. 1, (10.5% in August for 2017 taxes) and continue to accrue until the taxes are paid in full. So, it is imperative to pay property taxes on time to avoid delinquent charges.”

You can also pay your property taxes online using a credit card or electronic check through Point & Pay.  Please visit our website at www.co.washington.wi.us, click on Departments, then County Treasurer, and Pay Real Estate Taxes Online.  You will need your tax parcel number as well as the amount due.  Please be advised that Point & Pay will charge you a convenience fee of 2.39% of the amount for this service.

The Washington County Treasurer’s office hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  You can contact the office at 262.335.4324.

Buck Blodgett impacting state prison inmates                             By Samantha Sali

On July 15, 2013, six years ago this week, the city of Hartford was rocked by the news of the brutal murder of 19-year-old Jessie Blodgett. Today, her father, Buck Blodgett, has made headlines for forgiving his daughter’s murderer, Daniel Bartelt, during the sentencing hearing and for starting up a non-profit called The LOVE > hate Project, targeting to end male-on-female violence.

One of the key parts of Blodgett’s nonprofit is giving presentations around the state titled, A Message from Jessie. To date, Blodgett has presented Jessie’s story to hundreds of people at college campuses, high schools, conferences, and community groups. He also travels to prisons, impacting inmates around the state of Wisconsin.

Buck Blodgett said he has done “about two dozen” presentations for the state prison system in the last two years, reaching 3,000 inmates and staff. “As The LOVE > hate Project returns to prisons this year that we visited last year, we are hearing more and more stories of the impact,” Blodgett said.

Blodgett said last year at Prairie du Chien Correctional, an inmate stood up during the Q&A after the presentation. The inmate said, “I don’t believe you forgave your daughter’s killer; don’t believe you could, don’t believe you would. I know I couldn’t, and I definitely wouldn’t.”

Blodgett replied, “I didn’t drive across the state and come to prison today to hear you say you can’t and won’t. We need you. You’re getting out soon and your calling needs you to answer it.”

When Blodgett returned to Prairie du Chien Correctional this year, he witnessed the same inmate attended the presentation with an entirely different attitude. He learned that Prairie du Chien had since started their own program called The Forgiveness Class. The inmate leader for the class was the same inmate who expressed his opposing viewpoints just the year prior.

Blodgett shared his new goal of expanding his reach within the prison system with a new, 4-part, faith-based series. “I’m hoping to distribute the video series farther and wider than I can do in person in other states,” he said.

“Buck has been invited into all the prisons within the state of Wisconsin. He’s made such an impact that it has caught the attention of the wardens and the chaplains. The chaplains wanted a faith-based presentation, so this series is called The F-Words…think Faith, Forgiveness, etc.,” said John Bass, pastor at Cedar Springs Church, 3128 Slinger Road, Slinger. Bass also serves as the Director of Promotions and Fundraising on The LOVE > hate Project’s Board of Directors.

“Buck is just a dynamite guy. Cedar Springs Church has just fallen in love with him and his message of love and forgiveness,” Bass said. “Our church has taken on The LOVE > hate Project as one of our missions because it’s about something we are passionate about; love, forgiveness, and overcoming and conquering hate. He’s been a huge part of our church; people look up to him and follow his example. The congregation has grown through Joy and Buck’s forgiveness,” said Bass.

The series is being recorded at Cedar Springs during its 9:30 a.m. service. Part 3 will be recorded Sunday, July 28, 2019.

Public info meeting for roundabout at CTH Q and Hillside Road in Village of Richfield

There is going to be a public information meeting for possible improvements to the CTH Q and Hillside Road Intersection in the Town of Lisbon / Village of Richfield in Washington and Waukesha Counties:

Wednesday, July 31 – 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.        Presentation at 6:05 p.m., followed by Q & A

Richfield Village Hall, 4128 Hubertus Road, Hubertus, WI 53033

Washington County is planning to apply for funding to construct a roundabout at the intersection of CTH Q and Hillside Road. The project is designed to improve safety at the intersection. Construction timing will be based on the approval of funding with an estimated construction schedule of 2021 or 2022.

Please attend to view displays, learn more from Washington County Highway Department staff, review informational displays, and provide your input on these proposed improvements.

Those unable to attend can submit comments to scott.schmidt@co.washington.wi.us Informational displays will also be available on the County Highway Department website on August 1. Feel free to contact the Washington County Highway Department with any questions at 262-335-4435.

Welcoming Smart Warehousing to the Village of Germantown

A ceremonial “Massive Panel Raising” will officially welcome Smart Warehousing to the community of Germantown with the construction of Germantown Gateway Corporate Park’s newest industrial building.  The building is one of two industrial buildings currently under construction within the newly established 140-acre corporate park located less than one mile east of the I-41 and Holy Hill Road/CTH 167 interchange.  The Panel Raising will occur on Monday, July 22 at 3 p.m. on the construction site.

With completion scheduled this fall, the 200,000 square foot industrial building will be home to Kansas City-based Smart Warehousing.  Smart Warehousing is an industry leading warehousing, fulfillment and logistical solutions company with operations located throughout the country.

The developer, Zilber Property GroupSM, recently completed a 706,000 square foot build-to-suit for Briggs & Stratton Corporation’s global distribution operations and is also currently developing an additional 200,000 square foot speculative building at the park.  Additional land sites are available for development.

Participating in the “Massive Panel Raising” will be Dean Wolter (Village of Germantown President), Mark Barbari (Executive Director of Strategic Accounts, Smart Warehousing) and John Kersey (Executive Vice President, Zilber Property Group).  The panel raising ceremony will begin promptly at 3:15 p.m.

Public hearing July 25 for Washington Co. special assessment on septic / Private On-site Wastewater Treatment System

On Thursday, July 25 in Room 1014 at the Washington County Courthouse there will be a public hearing at 7:35 a.m. regarding a proposal to place a special assessment on property tax bills for the tracking and maintenance of the Private On-site Wastewater Treatment System (POWTS) throughout Washington County.

According to the County website:

This assessment is currently estimated at $11 annually per parcel served by POWTS or $11 annually per system located on a single parcel, whichever is greater.

The report on the Special Assessment is available HERE or for inspection at the County Clerk’s Office and Parks and Planning Department Office during business hours.

In short, this report details the proposed special assessments intended to recover or defray Washington County’s costs related to developing, maintaining and enforcing a POWTS inventory tracking system as required by §145.20 Wis. Stats. The assessment district includes all incorporated and unincorporated areas of Washington County within which POWTS are located. We continue to evaluate programs and costs in Washington County in order to best serve all County residents and ensure that we are mindful of the future. As such, the County has passed a preliminary resolution authorizing this report, a letter to homeowners and a public hearing because the cost of this program makes sense to be borne by users rather than taxpayers at large. Roughly 40% of properties within the County are serviced by POWTS (an estimated 20,313 parcels as of 6/13/2019) and the remaining properties are serviced by sewer. 25 other Counties throughout Wisconsin currently use fees to support POWTS system programming.

Some frequently asked questions include:

Q: Why are you holding the public hearing in the morning?

The public hearing is scheduled during the Land Use and Planning’s monthly standing meeting. We are considering the addition of a possible additional evening information session in order to accommodate a variety of residents and stakeholders. Any comments received in writing, via email or letter, will be added to the record of the public hearing. Written comments received on or before Wednesday, July 24 will be distributed to the committee prior to the hearing. Written comments received after the public hearing will be distributed to the committee via email. All written comments will be posted to the county’s website.

Q: What would the fee pay for?

The proposed fee is for the administrative costs of the county to administer the POWTS maintenance program as required by state law. This includes maintaining the inventory of systems and sending maintenance reminders to POWTS owners when their system is due for maintenance. If compliance is not obtained, then a Wisconsin Uniform Municipal Citation may be written and an appearance in court may be necessary. Other duties performed within the program include database management, analysis and quality control of the POWTS program, mailing and emailing information, reconciliation reports and general customer service duties.

Q: Why do you mail postcards? Could you save money by sending reminder e-mails?

The county looks to employ technology whenever possible. Our current systems do not have a way to email owners instead of mailing a card. Even mass email clients could require yearly subscription fees. Additionally, when property ownership changes, the email would be obsolete. It’s more accurate to mail property owners, because mailing addresses are updated with ownership changes.

Q: $225,000 for this program cost annually is a lot.

The preliminary/proposed program costs are outlined on the county’s website. These were developed based on a series of assumptions for public and County Board dialogue. Costs shown are based on the county’s estimated current programming costs for Land Use Programming. A quick note, the fire capacity for Room 1014 is 100. County officials are planning for overflow; however, those details have not yet been released.

In addition to the public hearing, an informational session will be held August 6 at Richfield Fire Station #1 at 6 p.m.

Letter to the Editor | Objections to Washington Co. special assessment for Private On-Site Treatment Systems | By David L. and Lynn S. Williams

I choose to present my strong objection to the Special Assessment for properties with Private On-Site Treatment Systems in written form and trust that as the letter to residents states, “Written comments will be read at the public hearing and will be given the same weight as oral testimony.”

My comments follow relevant sections of the synopsis…..

EXCERPTS FROM: Private On-Site Wastewater Treatment System (POWTS) Maintenance Program Special Charge Tax Assessment Report June 2019

(1) ” …..because the cost of this program makes sense to be borne by users rather than taxpayers at large.”

“Program Benefits

Land Resources programming in Washington County has a vision for “protected and improved land & water resources.” One of the primary reasons for POWTS regulations and properly maintaining POWTS is the health of families, communities and the environment. When septic systems fail, inadequately treated household wastewater is released into the environment and human contact can pose a significant risk to public health. Failing systems can contaminate nearby wells, groundwater, and drinking water sources. (EMPHASIS ADDED) …”

RESPONSE: The benefit of POWTS monitoring DOES benefit ALL taxpayers. As stated, failing systems can contaminate groundwater and drinking water sources. All homeowners , including those on on city sewers, DO realize a benefit from the program.

CONCLUSION: The cost for monitoring POWTS should be borne by all taxpayers and be part of the county budget, as it has been ever since monitoring became required.

(2) The allocation of 40% of “Salary & Wages” (and similarly in all the line items) in the proposed 2020 Budget to the POWTS program is excessive.

RATIONALE: Proof of compliance is only required every third year. Therefore, in any year only one-third of the 20,000 POWTS owner need to be contacted, i.e. 6,666. Suppose that 80% of the owners comply after the first post card mailing, then only 1,333 require further follow-up.

CONCLUSION: If there is to be Special Assessment the Board should require the Department to evaluate and justify how it could possibly require $227,527 to monitor the program.

Respectfully submitted,

David L. and Lynn S. Williams

 Letter to the Editor | Attention owners of Washington Co. Private On-site Wastewater Treatment System | By Frank Mayer

Attention Washington County POWTS Owners

RE: Public Hearing on July 25 at 7:35 a.m.

I have numerous questions and thoughts regarding this Public Hearing

#  1  This seems to be a strange time for a Public Hearing.

#  2  This special Assessment does not fully explain what this money will be used for.

#  3  The notices for pumping have been sent out for  19 years and the pumpers send in their report to Planning and Parks  Department. If the money $11 per household is used for computer entry only, this seems like a money grab. $11 per year times 3 years per household. This is way out of line for such little work. What’s next $11 per well?

#  4  If onsite inspections were done with this money, and consider 8 inspections per day per household, ( counting travel time ) 40 per week and 200 per year it would take 9 years just to complete the Town of Farmington which has 1900 households give or take. The County has 20313 systems. At $11 per year per household in the County times 20313 that comes to  223,443 per year for computer entry. Systems are pumped every third year. In a three year period this would amount to  670,329. What a windfall for Planning and Parks.

#  5  Special Assessments on the TAX BILL ARE NOT TAX DEDUCTIBLE.

#  6  I would hope you, Jamie Ludovic ( Central Services Director )  would consider holding another Public Hearing or an extension of such hearing at a future date and time between 6 p.m. and  8 p.m.

Concerned Town of Farmington Resident

Frank Mayer

 

Disclaimer: Opinions and letters published in http://www.washingtoncountyinsider.com are not necessarily the views of the Editor, or Publisher.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Independent Task Force to examine facilities in West Bend School District

There was a presentation Monday, June 17 at the West Bend School Board meeting as a community group stepped up to complete a facilities study in the West Bend School District. The Task Force is led by West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow, West Bend Mutual Insurance CEO Kevin Steiner and Tim Schmidt of Delta Defense.

Topic and Background from WBSD Superintendent Don Kirkegaard: In May I had a discussion with three individuals from the community: Mayor Kraig Sadownikow, Kevin Steiner/West Bend Mutual Insurance, and Tim Schmidt/Delta Defense that are forming a committee to look at our facilities. They have asked to have access to our facilities and have an opportunity to visit with Mr. Ross to discuss projects that have been completed, as well as projects that are being planned.

There is no district involvement with the committee.

They will submit a report to the Board in September and/or October. The Board can use all of or part of the information as the Board determines future facilities’ improvements.

The committee is not authorized by the Board or the Superintendent. The report will be informational only with the Board being responsible to make any and all decisions.

Board member Joel Ongert: “Are you off and running with this Task Force? Do you have a group of individuals in mind?”

Kevin Steiner: “The committee has been chosen so it’s construction experts, facility management, communication experts and so it’s really a diverse group of people and we have met and they’re on board and anxious to get going.”

Tim Schmidt: “In terms of messaging it’s very important to us and all the folks on this team that we want people to understand we’re supporting you; we’re working to support the school board.”

Board member Nancy Justman: “I heard you spoke of Jackson and the high school… but I wonder if there’s any opportunity to take a look and include in your time and study the other elementary schools. We’re looking at everything on a whole and the community is coming together on this one and can you look at those schools as well.” ((West Bend also has Decorah Elementary, McLane Elementary and Green Tree Elementary))

Steiner: “This group is very willing and perhaps it’s a conversation we could have with the group as we go forward. We’d like to demonstrate this is helpful and still allow you to do your job and so certainly we thought Jackson and the high school is a good way to start but there are opportunities to move beyond that.”

Schmidt: “It’s critical that we address this from a clean-slate mentality. We don’t like to use the April referendum as some starting point but rather wipe the slate clean and figure out from our perspective what we think.”

Steiner: “There are actual committee members that have worked with Mr. Ross (WBSD facilities director) in the past on the long-range plans so there is some knowledge from this group who perhaps also bring some expertise to see how far we’ve come.”

Board member Kurt Rebholz: “It’s eye opening to go through some of these facilities; we have equipment from 1940s and ’50s.”

Board member Paul Fischer: “I’m interested in the scope of the findings. Is it more infrastructure and plant related or will you get into areas like library modifications and without making recommendations will you include potentially include findings such as, this is outdated in terms of instructional type situation or is the focus on more of the physical plan itself.”

Tim Schmidt: “It’s my understanding we won’t look into instructional anything.”

Board member Chris Zwygart: “It’s important this board maximize this group’s independence.  If you can confirm none of the board members are participating on the committee and no district employees.”

Schmidt and Steiner confirm.

Ongert: “We’re not paying you to do this. What are our resources, Dave Ross, access to buildings….  ”

Superintendent Kirkegaard: “We’ll provide any information you need, we’ll give you access to the buildings. One of the things in the referendum people talked about was that when you had the architects telling you to do X and for all the dollars you spend the architects get additional money because they get a percentage. Or you had the builders tell you to do X and they become the contractor. This really does provide an opportunity, not for an outside recommendation, but they have no vested interest other than they want to do what’s best for our community and our school.”

After the meeting Task Force Chairman Kraig Sadownikow submitted the following comment.

CEO’s Kevin Steiner of West Bend Mutual and Tim Schmidt of Delta Defense are pleased to announce their organizations’ financial support for a private task force that will provide independent findings relative to the long-term sustainability and capital improvements at Jackson Elementary and the West Bend High Schools.   A referendum failed to gain taxpayer support in April of 2019.  The referendum targeted enhancements at the West Bend High Schools as well as the construction of a new K-4 elementary school in Jackson.  “The referendum showed that our community is divided on whether these investments are necessary.  The Task Force will take a fresh, independent look at the needs of the district and will share findings with the school board.  I applaud all the members of the Task Force for stepping up and taking action to help bring our community together around this issue,” said Steiner.

The West Bend School District Private Task Force is not a publicly created committee. Rather, it is a private collection of concerned taxpayers.  Schmidt noted, “The voters in the District spoke loud and clear. They were uncomfortable with the April referendum question.  Delta Defense works hard at attracting more and more families to join our team and move to West Bend. Having strong, competitive schools is critical in this effort. I’m excited to dig in and find an efficient and responsible solution for West Bend schools.”

“We live in a very intelligent and generous community whose citizens rally around causes while being careful to thoroughly analyze efforts and projects prior to supporting them,” stated City of West Bend Mayor and businessman Kraig Sadownikow.  “The purpose behind this independent task force is to offer the School Board and district taxpayers an unbiased, educated opinion regarding the potential needs in Jackson and at the High Schools.”  Sadownikow is also Chairman of the Task Force.

Task Force members were chosen based on their construction, facilities management, and communication expertise.  They will tour schools, investigate alternative solutions to current challenges, validate current needs, and report findings to the West Bend School Board in October of 2019.  According to Sadownikow, Task Force members are committed to asking questions that have never been asked before and to communicate openly, consistently, and independently.  Zimmerman Architectural Studios has been retained by the Task Force and will offer consultation pertaining to facility best practices in the education environment.

“We do not expect to make recommendations to the School Board. Instead, we will present findings within the context of the District’s long-range improvement plan,” Sadownikow said.  He added, “the School Board was elected to make decisions.  With that in mind, we will offer our independent thoughts and findings, allowing the School Board to draw their own conclusions and take action accordingly.”

For additional information on the West Bend School District Private Task Force contact Kraig Sadownikow at www.teamacs.net.

Historic West Bend Theatre sign primed and painted

A hat tip to the wonderful staff at Poblocki Sign Company in Milwaukee for opening its doors so we can give you a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stage of refurbishing for the Historic West Bend Theatre sign.

On Dec. 27, 2018 the landmark was removed from the side of the theatre in Downtown West Bend; it was loaded onto a semi and brought to the shop to give the 90-year-old iconic sign a face lift.

On Wednesday after the letters and decorative edges had been tightly taped off with fine precision the final spray-painting process got underway.

Poblocki’s Paul Kaminski tried to give an update over the din of the ventilation in the room. “The yellow is a primer color,” said Kaminski. “The reason it’s taped off in the letter troughs is because it’s going to be a lighter color than the teal blue of the sign.”

“We took a chip of the original paint and put it under the spectrophotometer which gave us a computer analysis and spectrum of the color,” Kaminski said. “The computer generated an exact match.”

Kaminski said we were standing in a “heated booth” and the final coat would be “baked on like painting a car.” After watching the start of the painting process the fumes from the spray paint forced us out of the area and we watched through a window in the door. Poblocki’s Cindy Wendland said the staff knew we were coming so they cleaned off the window for a clear view.

Up next, after the paint dries the tunnels in the letters will be painted and electronics will be installed.

The sign is expected to be returned later this summer as the Historic West Bend Theatre undergoes a major renovation.

Building home to Walmart in West Bend has been sold

In March 2019 a story was posted at WashingtonCountyInsider.com about the property at 1515 W. Paradise Drive being for sale. Many people know it as the building that’s home to Walmart.

According to state records the property has been sold. An article in Biz Times reads:

A 21-acre property that includes a Walmart store in West Bend was sold to a San Diego-based real estate investment firm for $17 million, according to state records.

The commercial property located at 1515 W. Paradise Drive was purchased by an affiliate of Realty Income Corp. from Continental 76 Fund LLC, an affiliate of Menomonee Falls-based Continental Properties.

According to city records, the property includes the single 205,600-square-foot Walmart building, which was constructed in 1998 and underwent a roughly $1.4 million remodel in 2016. The property is assessed at nearly $12.59 million.

Dedication of Civil War Monument in West Bend

There was an intimate ceremony Monday, June 17, 2019, as veterans, friends and family members gathered at Pilgrim Rest Cemetery on Chestnut Street to pay respect to Civil War veterans from the community.

Jen Fechter is with a group called “Remembering Our Civil War Veterans.”

“Our mission is to put monuments, like the one we’re dedicating today, in all the cemeteries in Washington County where Civil War veterans are buried,” she said. “Our mission is to honor those that served in the Civil War and make sure their legacy is always remembered through these monuments. It goes a long way to preserving the history in the community.”

The monument is sponsored by VFW Post 1393 Auxiliary. The memorial honors veterans that served in the Civil War 1861-1865 and who are buried at Pilgrim Rest Cemetery. Names on the grey, granite monument include Henry Bannenberg, John Huebner, John Kahnt, Martin Lampert, John H.W. Peters, Friederich Roennbeck, Rudolph Roennbeck, Moritz Tschoepe, and Gottlieb Zeiher.

Tom Brown, commander of Alonzo H. Cushing Camp No. 5 in Saukville, provided some history on the monument.

“To VFW Post Auxiliary and the City of West Bend in the name of the Sons of Union veterans of the Civil War, representing as we do all the soldiers and sailors who defended the integrity and authority of the nation, thank you and those whom you represent, for this monument.

This monument assures us that dead are held in remembrance – those who served for the security of the citizen and union of states. It is significant of brave and loyal obedience to the command of the nation always and everywhere, since the obligations of citizenship are not restricted to time or place, or to the conflict of arms. It gives encouragement for the future, since the recognition and approval it gives of patriotic fidelity and heroism, will be an incentive for display of public valor and virtue in all coming time.

There can be no doubt that the honor we pay to these patriotic dead, and to their memorable deeds will serve not only to make American citizenship in these days more reputable, but also to maintain and perpetuate, through all future generations, the union and authority of the United States of America.”

The family of John H. W. Peters was well represented at the ceremony. Glenn Peters spoke extensively about his great grandfather. “He never talked much about the war,” said Peters.

Private William Peters served in the 34th Regiment; he was on the Union side in Company K.  The 34th Regiment, Wisconsin Infantry organized in Madison, WI in December 1862. It moved to Columbus, Ky., Jan. 31- Feb. 2, 1863. Attached to District of Columbus, Ky., 6th Division, 16th Army Corps, Dept. of the Tennessee, to August 1863. (Six companies attached to 4th Brigade, District of Memphis, Tenn., 5th Division, 16th Army Corps, May to August).

Signs up for new Shopko Optical 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 soon 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.

The store clerk said the move across the street will occur at the end of June 2019; the exact date has not yet been determined.

More details were posted in a press release from Shopko. In order to position the Company for future success, Shopko has announced that 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. Parties interested in receiving additional information about the Company’s pharmacy auction process should send inquiries to shopko@hl.com.

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.

The future of Fund 46 in the West Bend School District

During a portion of the Monday, June 10, West Bend School Board meeting a discussion came up about Fund 46.

Andy Sarnow, WBSD finance director, said Fund 46 was established in July 2014.

“We established our Fund 46 five years ago, probably to the day. We do have the ability to spend the money as of July 1, 2019. At this point in time we’re not planning to spend it.”

Superintendent Don Kirkegaard said “some of the money in Fund 10 was spent last year, 2018.”

“With the proposed referendum we were talking about using a couple million dollars in Fund 46,” said Kirkegaard.  “We were talking about using some of that for offsetting some of the referendum dollars. The Jackson fund, we did spend some of that last year when we bought additional land. We used Fund 10; we couldn’t spend anything out of Fund 46 until July 1, 2019.”

Board member Joel Ongert questioned how much money was in Fund 46 and how was it being used by the district.

Sarnow did not know the number off the top of his head and Kirkegaard said it was “In the $2.1 million range.”

Ongert said: “And we’re able to start spending that July 1; I guess just a thought is we outlined all kinds of needs around our facilities and the referendum failed and if those needs are urgent needs and we’ve got $2 million sitting in a fund to tackle security, safety, whatever then I think it’s time to start thinking about whether we use it because if we’re waiting for referendums to pass we could be waiting forever and we’ve got $2 million sitting there that could be renovating the entire library, or could be tackling all of our safety and security issues right now. So that’s something we’ve always talked about the Jackson savings account and the community didn’t think it was time for Jackson right now and we’re sitting on $2 million and we could put in to Jackson with that new blacktop on in Jackson so it’s just something to think about that Fund 46.”

Board member Paul Fischer: “In light of the facilities tour and what we’ve seen and what Dave (Ross) and his team are doing with $1.5 million a year is it reasonable to think we’d have a maintenance driver in the budget? Something that gives us a little more meat to be able to take care of the 1.2 million square feet that we’ve got in the district. I’ve done a little homework and we’re woefully under…. credit to Dave and his team for doing what they’re doing but I believe we’ve optimized the experience in the classroom at the expense of some of the buildings. How do we invest in these facilities so they don’t end up costing us too much down the road.”

According to the Department of Public Instruction money used in Fund 46 has more restrictions and must coincide with an established long-term capital improvement plan.

Long Term Capital Improvement Trust Fund (Fund 46)

A school board with an approved long-term capital improvement plan (minimum of 10 years) may establish a “trust” that is funded with a transfer from the general fund. The contribution from Fund 10 to Fund 46 (Long-term Capital Improvement Trust Fund) is recorded as the expenditure for shared cost and equalization aid purposes. Future expenditures from Fund 46 are not part of shared costs. A school board is prohibited from removing money deposited into Fund 46 for a period of five years after the fund is created. After the initial five year wait period is over, funds may only be used for the purposes identified in the approved long-term capital improvement plan. Fund 46 assets may not be transferred to any other school district fund.

On a history note:

-The School Board regularly set aside $250,000 for the Jackson Elementary Fund, also known as Fund 46. During a meeting in May 2018 it was noted Fund 46 carried $2.5 million and was designated for Jackson Elementary.

-Fund 46 would have been used to offset the cost of a future referendum involving Jackson Elementary. In 2018, for the first time since the fund started in 2014, the board approved setting aside $20,000 for the Jackson Fund. Superintendent Don Kirkegaard said they would see “how our budget is performing.” He said the district would look at whether to contribute to the Jackson Fund in spring 2019.

-During Monday’s meeting, June 10, 2019 district finance director Andy Sarnow said no money is being designated toward the Jackson Elementary Fund/Fund 46 in the upcoming budget.

-In a follow-up email Kirkegaard outlined the funds.

There are actually three different areas or funds coming into play with this topic.   The Jackson Fund were monies set aside and earmarked for a future Jackson project and it is currently held in our General Fund (Fund 10) as a “committed” fund balance.  As of July 1, 2018, there was $2,224,981 in the Jackson account.  The board spent $750,000 from the Jackson account for the purchase of land in the Village of Jackson from the Village of Jackson next to the property the district owned.  The current balance of the Jackson Account in Fund 10 is $1,474,981, again in a committed fund balance in the District’s General Fund.

Fund 46 (Long Term Capital Improvement Trust Fund) was established in July of 2014.   No money can be spent from Fund 46 until July of 2019 per state statute.  It is anticipated that there will be a balance of $1,740,000 at fiscal year-end, 6/30/2019.  There are no specific spending requirements for Fund 46 as long as it is for capital improvements.  It has been generally understood that Fund 46 would also be used for Jackson.

There is a second facilities fund, Fund 41 (Long Term Capital Expansion Fund) dating back to the 2008-09 school year.  Fund 41 is anticipated to have a balance of approximately $740,000 at fiscal year-end.  These two funds, Fund 41 and Fund 46, have historically been talked about as one fund but they are two different accounts.  Going forward we will correctly refer to each fund separately.

A discussion about the mill rate was initiated toward the end of Monday night’s budget discussion.

Board member Ongert: “So are you suggesting the mill rate could go down even more during the 2019-2020 budget?”

Andy Sarnow: “I don’t know yet, so I don’t want to say because I haven’t made that calculation.”

Board member Nancy Justman: “Well considering some of the criticism we endured during the referendum that we need to ‘live within our means’ I would say dropping the levy or not taxing to the max would be detrimental to us. I’m not sure why we would even think about doing that personally.”

Ongert: “Plus I heard loud and clear people think we have too much debt in the West Bend School District and if that’s what’s preventing people from voting ‘yes’ on the referendum then let’s maintain the mill rate and pay down even more debt, if that’s what our community wants. Dropping the mill rate just to see how low we can go, um… I think is detrimental to our facilities to our staff, to our students. I don’t want to tax the crap out of the community, but we need to be able to pay down the debt.”

Justman: “Obviously we have a lot of capital things we have put off. The fact we have carpeting in that building we can assume is at least 40 years old* (statement not confirmed) is frightening. Correction, 48 years*(statement not confirmed).. even more frightening. The idea we have put off items but we also need to make sure we have this balance with our students, we still want to be a destination district. I’m just not in favor at all or decreasing the mill rate at all. I guess you’d have to really come up with some amazing plan to sell me on a plan to do that. I think we should look at increasing it and look at some of these projects that we haven’t been able to get done. I see Dave Ross is happy dancing in the background… as I go on with my rant here. But we really need to prioritize some of these things. We can’t have carpeting that’s 48 years old*(statement not confirmed) and we can’t have projects that Dave is holding together with binder twine to try and get things done. I mean we really need to look at some of these things and if that requires us to raise the mill rate than so be it.”

Ongert: “And our taxpayers are telling us we can’t have any debt.”

Justman: “Well the word was ‘live within your means’ but we don’t sell anything, so we have no means but apparently some people don’t understand, so I just want to point out I’m not in favor of decreasing the mill rate.”

Sarnow said a preliminary budget will be presented Monday, June 17. The annual meeting is set for Monday, Sept. 23 at 7 p.m.

*Note of clarification – During the meeting board members Nancy Justman and Tonnie Schmidt said the carpet in the WBW library was “40” and then “48 years old.” Two former staffers confirmed the carpet in the WBW library was replaced in the late 1980s. Emails were sent on Thursday, June 6, 2019, to both Justman and Schmidt asking where they received their information. So far, as of June 17, 2019, neither has responded.

Also note, the school board toured the schools in the district on May 24, 2019. According to facilities manager Dave Ross, neither Justman nor Schmidt were on the tour.

On Monday, June 17 a community group will address the School Board about conducting its own review of facilities in the WBSD.

How many were served at 32nd annual Washington County Breakfast on the Farm?

A note of thanks to all volunteers who helped at the 32nd annual Washington County Breakfast. Highland Dairy and the Enright Family Farm in Kewaskum were fantastic hosts this year. According to Mike Strupp with the Washington County Dairy Promotion Committee volunteers served 3,702 people.

That included: 12,000 Pancakes, 5,200  Half Pints of Milk, 440 dozen eggs, 380 lbs. Cheese Curds, 640 lbs. Sausages and 120 Gals. of Ice Cream

The Dairy Promotions Committee was very happy with the turnout. “I would like to thank the Enright family for hosting this year’s breakfast,” said Strupp. “We had 238 volunteers help and the Diary Promotions Committee handed out three $1,000 scholarships to Teagen Herman , Leah Weninger , Leann Gehring.”

Updates & Tidbits

– The Jack Russell Memorial Library will extend its hours beginning July 1. The public library will open 9 a.m. Monday through Saturday.  In celebration there will be cookies all day July 1 and July 2.

– Hannah Mrozak of Richfield returned to Wisconsin on Tuesday, June 18 as her girl group Citizen Queen opened for Pentatonix at the Fiserv Forum. Mrozak posted a note on social media, “I’m gonna cry. I hope to see as many of your lovely faces as possible. Show starts at 7:30 pm. So so excited!!!! Ahhhh!!!!!! 💕” It was May 1, 2019 when Mrozak and her Citizen Queen announced it “has been SIGNED to RCA Records AND we are the first opening act for select dates on #PTXTheWorldTour !!!” Citizen Queen opened its tour in Oakland on May 11, 2019.

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Future of St. Joseph’s statue determined as hospital in Town of Polk changes name

On June 6 a story was posted on WashingtonCountyInsider.com about the pending name change for St. Joseph’s Hospital in the Town of Polk.

Tom Duncan, vice present and COO of Froedtert South said the new name would be Froedtert West Bend Hospital. “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,” said Duncan in an article published at the Journal Times.

After the announcement neighbors had a couple questions regarding the extent of the name change and what would happen to the St. Joseph’s statue. The answers were provided by the hospital’s Rita Schuetz.

The only health center changing names will be the current St. Joseph’s Health Center, 3200 Pleasant Valley Road, West Bend, located in a building adjacent to St. Joseph’s Hospital. It will be Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Pleasant Valley Health Center.

The public will begin seeing the name changes go into effect in fall 2019.

The St. Joseph’s statue on the hospital campus will remain to honor the legacy of St. Joseph’s Hospital.

On a history note: The small nameplate at the base of the statue reads, ‘Original statue from St. Joseph’s Hospital Chapel West Bend, Wi – Circa 1930.’

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.

The Olla family of Kewaskum makes strides as it continues to mend | By Fay Olla

The Olla family of Kewaskum has been posting updates following an accident at the end of May involving five of their boys.

Three of the brothers in the accident have been released from the hospital and Luciano is making strides toward recovery. Below is an update from mother Fay Olla.

Every day with Luc is an adventure full of unexpected turns and terrain. Tony and I never quite know what to expect. On Monday he was still very sleepy… and when he would wake up—there wasn’t too much of Luc yet. He has a large wound on his left side and on his ankle— the stitches were taken out and the wounds are healing nicely.

As he continues to be weaned from his meds, he is awake longer and there are little bits of speaking. He knows Tony and I and his siblings.

He has several sessions of therapy a day— occupational, physical, and speech. Wednesday was a big day— he ate pancakes for breakfast and as long as he continues to eat well and drink enough fluids he will not need to have the NG tube in any longer. (Nasogastric intubation involves the insertion of a plastic tube or NG tube through the nose, past the throat, and down into the stomach).

Thursday we also saw a huge change as he was awake and rearing to go. He now wants to stand, walk, eat— do everything on his own.

The challenge now is that he is very confused and frustrated. He doesn’t understand why he is in the hospital— or why people come to visit and then have to leave.

He is very aggressive and has no filter on what comes out of his mouth. This phase of recovery is very challenging, and Tony and I are doing our best to trust that our Luc is going to emerge from this still. Thank you for always thinking of us an sending your love and prayer.

Help spread the word!

On Saturday, June 1 the Olla family announced the passing of their 15-year-old son Valentin. The family said his organs were donated so others may live.

Debate about traffic signals or roundabout at Kwik Trip on E. Washington Street

The proposed Kwik Trip at 1610 E. Washington Street in West Bend was a hot topic at Tuesday night’s Plan Commission meeting. Aside from public hearings on zoning and conditional use permits there was a lengthy discussion on whether traffic signals were necessary at the intersection of Schoenhaar Drive.

Motorists in West Bend realize there is already a traffic signal at E. Washington Street and River Road. Installing another traffic signal at Schoenhaar Drive could create a lot of stop-and-go within a one-block radius. Right now, River Road is the last signal for motorists headed east out of town. Those headed west would hit another signal about a half mile up the road at Highway 33 and Indiana Avenue.

Plan Commission member Jed Dolnick said he would have a difficult time voting in favor of the Kwik Trip development without first seeing a traffic impact analysis and what would happen to businesses on the south side of E. Washington Street.

City engineer Max Marechal said they did review a traffic impact study and a signalized intersection at Schoenhaar Drive was one of the first things discussed.

“All of the improvements will go through a plan review and we will make sure those improvements match our standards and then my office will oversee those improvements,” said Marechal.

Dolnick questioned how the signals would be synchronized within a one-block radius and then he opened the door on roundabouts.

“I hate to blaspheme but I wonder if a roundabout would be appropriate at Schoenhaar instead of a signal so close to River Road,” he said. “I’m sure if you’re Kwik Trip their heads are exploding now because a roundabout is really expensive.”

Marechal basically said a roundabout is more expensive and requires more property.

“It’s more expensive than a traditional intersection because it requires substantially more real estate and then I would anticipate the need to purchase private property in order to install a roundabout at this location,” Marechal said. “At this point without substantial actions a signalized intersection is the best option at this time.”

Plan Commission member Rich Kasten asked of there was a way to modify traffic flow so the city could avoid a signal at Schoenhaar Drive.

“We don’t like to have signal intersections close to each other,” said Marechal. “Look at the distance between Main and Paradise and then a signal by Meijer. Sometimes we don’t have a choice, but we do regularly have traffic counts done and look at if we can refine signal coordination.”

Plan Commission member Chris Schmidt questioned which entrance/exit to the Kwik Trip would be used the least. Early indications were it would be the entrance/exit off Schoenhaar Drive.

“If you put a traffic light at Schoenhaar Drive and it’s the least used of the three entrances then I don’t see the need for it (the traffic signal),” he said.

The Plan Commission ended up voting to move forward with development of a Kwik Trip on E. Washington Street.

The approval came with four contingencies: 1. Approval of a site plan for all required improvements prior to the issuance of the conditional use permit. 2. Approval of a traffic impact analysis.  3. Approval of a certified survey map combining the three lots.  4. Approval of the zoning amendment and 2020 Comprehensive Plan for the development.

New restaurant opening in former Wa Wa building in Hartford | By Samantha Sali

A new restaurant is coming to Downtown Hartford at 48 N. Main Street. The two-story building, originally constructed in 1884, is located between Creative License and Faith and Giggles. The last business that occupied the building was the ‘Wa Wa’ Chinese restaurant.

“The Wa Wa building has been vacant for around a decade,” said Scott Henke, executive director of Hartford Area Chamber of Commerce.

Two sales are disclosed for the parcel in the Washington County property tax database. The first sale in 1999 with Tommy Lin listed as the previous owner. The second sale was recorded in January 2019, listing the current owner as Vicente Flores-Martinez.

The 2018 assessed value for the property was $233,000. The new owner of the property, Flores-Martinez, currently owns and operates Main Street Café in Evansville (south of Madison).

The Cafe serves American Mexican food, carries a medium-priced menu and is open daily from 6 a.m. – 8 p.m.  Flores-Martinez indicated the new Hartford restaurant will have the same name, menu, and hours as the Evansville location. He said the reason he was drawn to Hartford was because the city has a “reasonably priced business district.”

He also said the Evansville location will remain open and this will be his second location. The grand opening of the Hartford restaurant will be sometime in July or August. Real estate company Berkshire Hathaway posted the property sold January 22, 2019 for $130,000.

Washington Co. Board votes on creating office of elected County Executive

Earlier this week after several long hours of discussion the Washington County Board voted 13-13 on a resolution to change the form of government to an elected county executive, rather than an appointed county administrator. A tie vote resulted in failure of the motion.

However, the issue could come back for another vote.

According to Washington County Public Affairs Coordinator Ethan Hollenberger, “A person on the prevailing side (no vote) would have to request reconsideration be placed on the agenda and move reconsideration at the July board meeting.  At that time, the resolution is live and can be voted on again, amended, sent to committee, or tabled.”

Hollenberger said a “citizen petition for referendum would be out of the board’s control.”

However, the board could put a non-binding advisory referendum on any regularly scheduled ballot.

Below is how votes were cast Wednesday, June 12 by the 26 members of the Washington County Board. The question involved a resolution changing Washington County’s form of government to create the office of the County Executive of Washington County.

Aye votes included:  Roger Kist, Chris Bossert, Mike Bassill, Denis Kelling, William Symicek, Tim Michalak, James Burg, John Bulawa, Mark McCune, Don Kriefall, Rock Brandner, Jeffrey Schleif, Carroll Merry

No votes included: Kris Deiss, Chris Jenkins, Frank Carr, Brian Krebs, Richard Bertram, Keith Stephen, Joseph Gonnering, Robert Hartwig, Marcella Bishop, Marilyn Merten, Russell Brandt, Brian Gallitz, Peter Source

 

9/11 Memorial groundbreaking in Kewaskum

Over 200 people turned out Thursday afternoon for the groundbreaking ceremony for the 9/11 Memorial in Kewaskum. The event was held at the future home of the Memorial on Fond du Lac Avenue and First Street. Guest speakers included Kewaskum Village Administrator Matt Heiser, 9/11 Memorial founder Gordon Haberman, and Washington County Administrator Josh Schoemann.

“Primary in our goals is that this memorial will for generations to come, stand as a historical touchstone linking the past event of 9/11/2001 to the present,” said Haberman. “The memorial will be a physical structure which respectfully honors the memory of those lost that day and in the resulting conflicts afterwards. It will stand as an important source of information for young people in understanding the sacrifices of 9/11, yet also portray the strength, spirit and resolve of America.”

According to the 9/11 Memorial website: The Wisconsin 9/11 Memorial is being built to serve as a space of reflection and remembrance for those lost on that fateful day. It will serve as a place of education for students and citizens from our local community, our county, our state, and our nation. ​Some will visit seeking knowledge. Others will come to honor the memories of those lost. All will be able to reflect on a day that challenged and changed America. It will be a symbol of the resolve, strength, resilience and compassion of her people. As time passes from the events of 9/11/2001, the Memorial will forever give meaning to the words, “NEVER FORGET.”

Community group to review facilities in West Bend School District

There will be a presentation Monday, June 17 at the West Bend School Board meeting as a community group steps up to complete a facilities study in the West Bend School District.

6:42 Facilities Study by Community Group

Presentation: Facility Study by Community Group – Kevin Steiner and Tim Schmidt

Topic and Background: In May I had a discussion with three individuals from the community: Mayor Kraig Sadownikow, Kevin Steiner/West Bend Mutual Insurance, and Tim Schmidt/Delta Defense that are forming a committee to look at our facilities. They have asked to have access to our facilities and have an opportunity to visit with Mr. Ross to discuss projects that have been completed, as well as projects that are being planned.

There is no district involvement with the committee. They will submit a report to the Board in September and/or October. The Board can use all or part of the information as the Board determines future facilities’ improvements.

The committee is not authorized by the Board or the Superintendent. The report will be informational only with the Board being responsible to make any and all decisions.

Kevin Steiner and Tim Schmidt are scheduled to attend the June 17 meeting to summarize the committee’s intent. Monday’s meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. in the district office. The meeting is open to the public.

Cedar Communities eyes rezoning for two-family residential land use

There will be a request for a public hearing at the Tuesday, June 11 West Bend Plan Commission meeting as Cedar Communities is asking for a change in 9.8 acres of land located at 113 Cedar Ridge Drive, Cedar Ridge Campus.

The recommendation is to change the land use from multi-family residential to two-family residential. Below are details from James Reinke, Business & Development Planner for the City of West Bend.

Cedar Communities has submitted a request to consider a comprehensive land use plan change and a zoning change for approximately 9.8 acres located at 113 Cedar Ridge Drive. The request is for the northern portion of the 49-acre parcel.

The request is to consider a change in land use from the existing multi-family residential to two family residential land use for the northern portion of the Cedar Ridge Campus.

The surrounding existing land uses are; residential and agricultural town uses to the west and south, single family and two-family residential uses to the north, and park, recreation and open space to the east. Given the surrounding existing uses the size of the parcel and the overall density, staff finds the proposed request to be an acceptable alternative for land use. The two-family residential use would be used as a transition from the existing multi-family use to the single-family use. The possible resulting residential density is less than that permitted under the current land use and zoning designation.

If the Comprehensive Plan change is endorsed by the Plan Commission, a zoning amendment to rezone that portion of the parcel will be requested to change the zoning from RM-4 Multi-Family Residential District to RD-2 Two-Family Residential and to add a Planned Unit Development Overlay (PUD) District.

If the Plan Commission finds the proposal to be acceptable, staff would recommend that a public hearing be set for August 6, 2019 at 6 p.m. to hear any concerns pertaining to the land use change for the 2020 Comprehensive Plan for the City of West Bend.

At the same meeting, a second public hearing would be held for the rezoning of that portion of the property from RM-4 Multi-Family Residential district to RD-2 Two-Family Residential District and a PUD overlay district.

pc: Adam Hertel, American Construction Services

Cedar Community said the expansion is necessary considering the demand in the house market for active seniors.

“Cedar Community has a years-long waiting list for active seniors who are looking for larger apartments and homes,” said Julie Gabelmann, Cedar Community Vice President of Resident Experience. “The twin homes we hope to build will help meet that growing demand, while providing the natural beauty of the 50-acre Cedar Ridge Campus, and the access to all of Cedar Community’s services and amenities.”

Modern Woodmen of America donates to Kettle Moraine Lutheran | By Daniel Frey

Financial Representative Sarah Grotelueschen presented a check to Jody Hansen the Business Manager of Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School.

This check was a matching fund Grotelueschen donated to KML’s recent Mad Science Charity Auction.

Modern Woodmen Fraternal Financial is a Not for Profit Financial Services organization that provides full holistic financial planning while putting back 100 percent of its profits into the local communities it serves.

West Bend resident recognized with St. Joseph’s Hospital Award | By Tim Olsen

Brittnie Dohl, West Bend, critical care tech on the Modified Care Unit, has been recognized with Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin St. Joseph’s Hospital’s semi-annual Sunflower Award for being a “rock star” and positive influence.

“Brittnie is certainly a “rock star” at her job,” said one of her nominators. “She made sure she went out of her way to make me comfortable during my 18-day stay. Brittnie always gave me positive vibes when I was feeling down. Brittnie is a great asset to your team and deserves to be recognized!”

The Sunflower Award honors extraordinary nursing support staff who demonstrate devotion, strength and compassion to ensure the well-being of patients, family and staff. St. Joseph’s Hospital recognizes one nursing support staff member twice a year. Each Sunflower honoree is recognized at a public ceremony in his/her unit with a certificate, a Sunflower Award pin and a hand-carved stone sculpture titled “Supporting Heart.” The sunflower was chosen as the award theme because the sun symbolizes warmth and strength, and the flower represents devotion, compassion and enthusiasm.

Patients, visitors, nurses, physicians and staff may nominate a support staff member by filling out the form available in CHD hospital lobbies and nursing stations and following the instructions or through Excellence in Action.

Hike to Mary Mother of the Church

About a dozen people from the Washington County area took part in a Hike to Mary this week. The group gathered outside St. Peter Church in Slinger and following a prayer set off on a 12-mile walk to Holy Hill in the Town of Erin. Steve Tennies said the inspiration came from a new feast day following Pentecost. The event was sponsored by John Paul II Men’s Group.

The annual pilgrimage hike celebrated the newly-proclaimed Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church, on Monday June 10, 2019.

This new Marian Memorial is always celebrated on the Monday after Pentecost Sunday.

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 http://www.washingtoncountyinsider.com 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, www.keepsunscreensafe.com, 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 WashingtonCountyInsider.com 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

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.

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

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 cspdailynews.com 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 www.kmsymphony.org, 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.

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

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 (dnr.wi.gov 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.”

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

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 washingtoncountyinsider.com are not necessarily the views of the Editor, or Publisher.

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

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 washingtoncountyinsider.com 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.

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

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.”

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

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 WashingtonCountyInsider.com 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.

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

ALDI in West Bend planning to expand

ALDI in West Bend, 1114 S. Main Street, is going to expand. On Tuesday, March 5 the West Bend Plan Commission will consider several requests including a public hearing to rezone a portion of S. Main Street. The lot in question is about 1.56 acres. The property sits to the northwest of the current ALDI grocery.

According to records at City Hall “the purpose of the rezoning request is to clean up a legacy zoning district from previous uses and to accommodate the sale of the western portion of the parcel for the expansion of ALDI.”

The rezoning would remain consistent with the recommended land use of the 2020 Comprehensive Plan for the City of West Bend. The purpose is to reconfigure three lots into two. ALDI Corporation, which has 2.5 acres, is proposing a building addition to the west and is acquiring 2.47 acres of land from the adjacent owner (King Pin) for that expansion.

The site plan is for a 2,440 square-foot commercial building addition located on the west side of the building with minor architectural building alterations proposed to the remaining building.

 The 1.8 acre lot is zoned B-1, Community Business District. The owner is acquiring additional lands to the west and north for the expansion.

 As a part of the site plan, the two existing storage buildings and the existing pavement within this area will be demolished to accommodate the expansion of the building.

 The parking lot will be not be altered.

 The area to be acquired from King Pin contains pavement and parking area that was originally used for the bowling alley use. The pavement will be removed and curbing will be installed. As a park of the site plan, the parking lot striping will be redone on the King Pin site to redefine the drive aisle and parking stalls in the area that is being altered by the land acquisition.

 The existing retaining wall will be modified to accommodate the new building addition.

 The building materials for the building addition will match and be consistent with the existing “St. Simon Blend” brick veneer. The existing building will receive the following upgrades:

o A tan accent band color changing to a slate gray color, at the entrance area above the windows.

o The building materials will change from an aluminum composite panel to a “Cedar (vintage wood)” looking fiber cement board.

o The “Food Market” signage on the east and north sides of the building will be removed and new “ALDI” signs will be replaced.

In 2017 ALDI announced a nationwide “plan to remodel and expand more than 1,300 U.S. stores by 2020.” Early plans indicate ALDI will spend “more than $37 million dedicated to enhancing stores in the Milwaukee-area.”

Long time volunteer at Full Shelf Food Pantry Al Carrier has died

 Word is starting to spread around West Bend about the sudden death of Al Carrier.

“Al was a long-time Volunteer and Board Member at Full Shelf Food Pantry,” said Michelle Mayer, Full Shelf Food Pantry Board Secretary.  “In fact, he volunteered just yesterday, Thursday, morning. On behalf of the Board of Directors, Al will be greatly missed.”

Carrier was also active in the local tennis community.

“Al will be missed but leaves quite a legacy in the West Bend tennis community,” wrote John Gambucci. “He was a master at getting kids to relax on the court. Al was also great at showing his players that life lessons could be taught through the game of tennis. He was a coach for all the right reasons and encouraged his athletes to be better people through the lessons they learned on the court.”

John Rozak of West Bend said Carrier passed away Thursday. “Al was just a great person and a great tennis coach for years at West Bend High School,” said Rozak. “Every morning Al was at the Food Pantry. He was just a great person.”

Greg Straub played tennis with Carrier. “I played tennis with Al and over time grew to understand and admire the person within the gruff exterior.  Al was a fiercely competitive person but valued the true principals of fairness and sportsmanship beyond the passion to win.  Always ready with a quick-witted comment, Al will be dearly missed by all that had the opportunity to truly know him.”

Funeral arrangements will be posted when information becomes available.

Quiet opening for Cafe Floriana

“Finally my own coffee shop and bakery,” said a woman from Cast Iron Luxury Living as she relished in the samples of sweets at the new Cafe Floriana, 611 Veterans Avenue, Suite 104, West Bend

The new bakery and coffee shop, which sits on the first level of Cast Iton  Luxury Living, quietly opened to friends and family on Friday, March 1.

Owners Katherine Schenk and her sister Sara Young have been busy attending to every detail including the lovely icing on top of the luscious cinnamon rolls.

The glass display case at the front of the store held a brilliant selection of homemade cookies, scones and breads including a thick slice of banana bread and one remaining lonely slice of savory lemon bread.

There was a printed menu with a variety of hot drinks from Stone Creek Coffee. Click HERE for a the store menu which includes soups and homemade sandwiches. The grand opening of Cafe Floriana is set for 6 a.m. Monday, March 4.

House fire closes E. Washington Street on Friday, March 1

West Bend firefighters are on scene at a house fire at 167 A E. Washington Street.  The call came in just after 8:30 a.m. Friday morning. One of the residents in the home, James Hess, said he was awakened by his neighbor pounding on his door telling him his kitchen was on fire. “I went and checked and my kitchen wasn’t on fire but there was smoke coming out of my attic,” said Hess.

There were three people who lived in the home including Hess, his wife and son and three cats. Two people also lived in the lower level, along with their cats.

“Everything was a blur but the smoke is in the attic area,” Hess said.

West Bend firefighters had an aerial truck and firefighters entered through a back porch to gain entry to the upper level of the home. Neighbors said around 9 a.m. you could see flames coming out the top of the home.

West Bend police on scene said nobody was injured and everybody got out safe, including the cats.

A press release was issued by the West Bend Fire Department.

On Friday, March 1, 2019 at 8:25, the West Bend Police Department 9-1-1 center received multiple calls of a house on fire in the 100 block of E. Washington Street. Battalion 1, Engine 1, and Engine 3 responded. Battalion 1 observed smoke and flames coming from the attic of a three-story duplex.

Battalion 1 activated MABAS Box 15-1-1 for a working still. Safety Officer, Truck 1, Jackson Fire Department engine and chief, and Med 21 responded.

A single occupant of the upper unit was the only person home at the time of the fire and was able to safely exit the structure. His two cats were later rescued. There was a partial collapse of the roof. No firefighter injuries were reported. The cause of the fire was found between the walls in the bathroom and may be electrical in nature. The cause of the fire was not suspicious according to Battalion Chief John Spartz.

The 2019 Mother Cabrini award winner is…..

With a bit of a delay, St. Frances Cabrini finally managed to present the 2019 Mother Cabrini Award. Normally the honor is the highlight of Catholic Schools Week, but following a snow delay, followed by another snow day and then an encore snow day …. the award was finally presented Tuesday afternoon in the gym at St. Frances Cabrini.

The annual Mother Cabrini Award was established in 1988. The committee consisting of winners from three previous years, as well as, the Principal and the Pastor reviewed criteria which is considered but not limited to include: Perseverance, Missionary Zeal, Simplicity and Educational Mission.

This year’s winner has been a teacher with St. Frances Cabrini for some time now. She has been described by her co-workers as an honest and fair person in the building.

She leads by example and is always pushing for the betterment of all kids in our building.  She has been involved with: multiple hiring committees, created the duty schedule, helped design the academic schedule for teachers over the summer, and leads 2 Together Event Committees.

She is a leader and people value her opinion. At the end of the day life is simple for her; she loves her family, and loves this school. I am proud to announce that this year’s Mother Cabrini Award Recipient is Mrs. Emily Graper.

“I was very surprised,” said Graper. “It’s an honor to be chosen but I just see it as I’m here to do my job and help the kids with their education.”

Graper is a 2004 graduate from Slinger High School.  She then went on to receive her degree from Marian University in Fond du Lac.

Graper started at St. Frances Cabrini as a kindergarten teacher in 2009. “My first class from when I started is now in eighth grade,” said Graper. “It’s cool to see them grow and the impact of a parochial education has really been evident. We’re educating the whole child, it’s about having a spiritual basis and having a purpose and showing kindness and compassion to people and it’s great to see it in their character.”

“Mother Cabrini is an example of someone who is driven by her love of children,” said Graper. “That’s a great basis to start our school and our classroom.

“Faith is a part of our day. We talk about it from the minute we walk in to the last thing we say before we walk out the door; Mother Cabrini is inspiring to us.”

Past winners include: Mrs. Gardon, Mrs. Endlich, Mrs. Vogel, Mrs Taylor, and Mr. Mac.

Garden Lounge opening in downtown West Bend

There was a soft opening this week at the new Garden Lounge, 258 N. Main Street in downtown West Bend. Owner Jeremy Hahn has been working on the business the last six months.

The inside of the lounge features a comfortable setting decorated mostly in white, black, and gray.

The Garden Lounge will open daily at 8 a.m. and feature Collectivo Coffee along with breakfast sandwiches, sausage, egg and cheese biscuit, donuts and Bloody Marys.  Hahn has a full bar along with phone charging stations in the back. The menu will also include fried pig wings, mozzarella sticks, toasted ravioli, pizza,

SPARK! at MOWA engages people with memory issues

Kindergarteners from Holy Angels School in West Bend spent a little time Tuesday morning sharing their artistic talents with senior citizens.

SPARK! is a free monthly program at the Museum of Wisconsin Art in West Bend.

The program, which is held the last Tuesday of each month, is designed for people with memory loss and their caregivers; the goal is to engage participants in conversation about Wisconsin art.

This week there was some intergenerational learning as a class from Holy Angels led the way and showed off their skills using colors and shapes.

Jessica Wildes, director of communications at MOWA, said the program really helps people with memory issues to “make connections.”

“Today seems to be successful and it’s a wonderful moment as the kids engage the seniors,” Wildes said. Each session of SPARK! includes a facilitated discussion about works of art in the galleries followed by time for coffee and mingling in the studio.

MOWA has been part of the regional SPARK! Alliance since 2009, thanks to seed support from the Helen Bader Foundation, and offers this program to highlight and promote self-expression and mental stimulation.

Coming up during the March 26 session, SPARK! will focus on Treasures from the Collection:  Be among the first to see MOWA’s newest acquisition to the collection. Take part in an engaging conversation about its content and through a facilitated discussion, interpret the meaning of the work and relate it to your own life.

SPARK! is a free program for participants with memory loss and their caregivers. Registration is requested one week in advance.

Rep. Knodl Statement on Governor Evers’ Budget Address

Rep. Dan Knodl (R-Germantown) issued the following statement regarding Governor Evers’ Budget address at the Capitol in Madison:

“When the legislative session started, my colleagues and I sent the new administration an extensive list of issues we believe we could work together on. After listening to the Governor’s budget address this evening, I was disappointed that he missed an opportunity for true bipartisanship. Instead of reaching across the aisle, his proposal includes divisive policies that will move our state backwards.

“Last week, Governor Evers vetoed a Middle Class Tax Cut. He followed that up this evening by introducing a budget that increases taxes, in-state tuition and driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants, and takes away education opportunities for families.

“Divided government shouldn’t mean nothing gets done, and I look forward to reviewing the budget further. It will be introduced in the Joint Finance Committee as legislation, which is standard procedure under state law. The committee will hold hearings around the state to get input from the public in the coming weeks.

“Our goal will be to find common ground and pass a budget that keeps Wisconsin moving forward. We must build on the success we’ve had as a state over the last eight years, and it’s unfortunate we didn’t see much of that from the Governor tonight.”

Special blessing with Auxiliary Bishop Schuerman for St. Gabriel Parish Education Center

Auxiliary Bishop James Thomas Schuerman from the Archdiocese of Milwaukee will be the special guest on Sunday, March 3 as a special Mass is held to celebrate the completion of the St. Gabriel Parish Education Center, 1200 St. Gabriel Way, Hubertus.

“Any time a Catholic Church, School or building of other purpose is constructed in the diocese it is blessed by the bishop,” said Jerry Gariety from St. Gabriel. “Unfortunately Archbishop Jerome Listecki was available for Sunday, March 3 but. Bishop Schuerman will preside over the Mass and blessing of the New Education Center. We are hoping many take the opportunity to join us on Sunday to view our St. Gabriel Church and New Education Center.”

Party with a Purpose for the Kettle Moraine YMCA

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.  This year the Y celebrates its 50th year, honoring one of the original founders, Vic Albiero.

In 1969 Bernie Ziegler had a vision to create a YMCA in West Bend.  His first stop in order to share this vision was at the home of Vic Albiero.

He was in full support and honored to be asked to be a part of the process. As quoted per Vic, “the three horsemen were Bernie Zeigler, Cliff Nelson and Norman Schowalter. They made certain the plan was on sound footing.”

Shortly after the conversation at his home, West Bend was declared a branch of the Milwaukee YMCA. Vic was elected the first Board President of the YMCA, and still holds the record for most years as Chairman at five.

At that time services were held throughout the community, including swim lessons in the backyard of people’s homes.  Vic’s daughter Jacci Gambucci taught for this program with cousin Pat from 1973 until leaving for college in 1978.  In 1973 the KMYMCA separated from Milwaukee and became an independent association.

A capital campaign raised $2 million in 1977, and in 1978 the original building opened.  Since then there have been numerous expansions.

“My family is very proud of our father’s part in shaping the YMCA,” said Gambucci. “He was involved in numerous community projects, but was most gratified with his work developing the Y.  He would be so pleased with where it is today, serving so many by helping them lead healthy lives through programming for chronic illnesses and giving the disadvantaged a place to belong through member scholarships.”

Gambucci and brother Tom Albiero are excited to host this year’s Party with a Purpose in honor of their father, and will be joined by 3 out of 4 of their siblings who reside out of state.

Jacci and Tom would like to encourage the community to come celebrate their father’s legacy and the 50th anniversary of the Kettle Moraine YMCA.

Party with a Purpose is designed to bring the community together to create awareness, while building momentum to support our friends and neighbors in need.

“Most importantly this happens over friendships, new and old, food, cocktails, auction, and live entertainment.  A true sense of community is when you can’t get your guests off the dance floor as good times were had by all,” said JennyZaskowksi, YMCA Director of Donor Development.

“As we celebrate our 50th Anniversary, this year’s 2019 Annual Campaign goal is $300,000.  This goal is achieved with the help of the Albiero family, our 18th annual golf outing in May, board, staff and community donations.  Today our West Washington and River Shores Branch serves more than 13,000 members.  With our campaign initiatives, approximately one-in-six receive some form of assistance to make certain they can continue to participate in our services.”

Please order before March 8. Join the Gambucci/Albiero family and let The Love Monkeys help kick off your St. Patrick’s Day weekend ~ a good time will be had by all!

Lenten fish fry at The Columbian

The first Lenten fish fry of the season at The Columbian, 3245 Lighthouse Lane, is March 8          Helping Hands Fish Fry Fundraiser 4 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.  The Helping Hands evening 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. It’s one of the most important times of year for many Christians around the world, particularly those within the Anglican, Catholic and Orthodox tradition. 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, March 6, until its conclusion on Easter Sunday, April 21, Lent has been a traditional time for fasting or giving something up or abstinence.”

Update on Cabela’s in Richfield

A pretty common question across Washington County is, “When will Cabela’s in Richfield reopen?” There was a small fire at the store Feb. 21, 2019. A note from the Washington County Sheriff’s Department is below.

February 21, 2019 Cabela’s Fire Authority:  Sergeant Uhan 415

On Thursday, February 21, 2019, at 11:17PM, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office was notified of a fire alarm at Cabela’s, 1 Cabela Way, in the Village of Richfield, Washington County. Deputies responded along with Richfield Fire Department. Upon locating the presence of smoke, fire departments from Germantown, Hartford, Jackson, and Slinger responded.

The fire originated from the shooting gallery arcade game on the second floor, and was extinguished by the sprinkler system. The fire appeared to be electrical. It was estimated by fire personnel that approximately 3,000 gallons of water was expelled from the sprinkler system. There was smoke and water damage to about 5,000 square feet. The incident remains under investigation, and no one was injured as a result of it.

Jack Schliessen is with Bass Pro Shops in Springfield, MO. “We are planning on opening the store in the next two weeks,” he said. “We know there’s been a lot of pent-up demand and certainly an unanticipated closure.”

Schliessen said Cabela’s has “crews and team members on site working hard to get things ready to be operational as soon as possible.”

Because of the uncertain date to reopen the Washington County Deer Advisory Council is changing its March 11 meeting location to Moraine Park Technical College.

“Cabela’s cannot guarantee the Richfield store will be open to the public, because of fire and water damage, hence the change of venue,” said Brett Weir.

Below is a press release from the CDAC:

The Washington County Deer Advisory Council (CDAC) will meet to review data and form preliminary 2019 antlerless quota, permit and season structure recommendations. This meeting will be held at Moraine Park Technical College on March 11 starting at 6 p.m.

While this is a working meeting of the council, the public is encouraged to attend and will have a formal opportunity to provide insight during the public comment period of the meeting.

CDACs are part of an effort to provide more public input on deer management issues and give stakeholders a greater responsibility in managing local deer numbers.

Councils will review and discuss the previous year’s hunting season results and long-term harvest trends, accept public comments and develop preliminary antlerless quota, permit and season structure recommendations. Recommendations will be sent to the Natural Resources Board for approval in May.

Citizens are encouraged to attend their CDAC’s March meeting and provide comments to the council. Local Department of Natural Resources staff will be on hand to present information and answer any questions.

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.

Those unable to attend their county’s meeting can view meeting minutes on the department’s CDAC website.

Zuern Building Products recognizes long time employees Larry Breuer and Eugene “Geno” Wolf

There was a family-style celebration at Zuern Building Products in Allenton on Monday as business owners, employees, family and friends gathered to recognize Eugene “Geno” Wolf for his 50 years with the company.

Wolf started at the lumberyard in Allenton when he was about 15 years old. His partner in crime was Larry Breuer. “When I started, June 15, 1968, I didn’t have a driver’s license,” said Breuer. “I didn’t know ‘Geno’ at first. He came along working at the company right after I started and then we were almost like brothers at Zuern.”

Breuer said the thing he liked best about Wolf with his mindset. “He thought just like I did,” said Breuer.

In an effort to maintain tradition, after naming a shed after Breuer in 2018 when he celebrated 50 years at Zuern, the crew at ZBP dedicated a shed to Wolf.

Below are some memories of “Geno” and Larry as told by their coworkers.

Jim Zuern – Eugene has a distaste for all things “TOLKO,” in any lumber market at any time of the year. As a buyer he is my go to for advice on good lumber mills, going to miss his good advice when he retires.”

Jim Zuern – “Larry was nicknamed the energizer bunny for good reason he keeps going and going. ZBP can count on his farm-boy mentality and common-sense approach to a problem, if given a task he will get the job done on time and on budget.

Larry is the man who has a memory like an elephant. Old customers, old employees, when a piece of equipment was purchased, what was shipped to a job two weeks prior, where or when something came from……Larry remembers.

Larry makes sure everybody has a nick name. Male, female, new employee, employee from another store…he’s got one for you.

Chris Greuel  – It is hard to put into words what these two have meant to me over 28 years.  Their work ethic, dedication to ZBP and customers, and loyalty are unmatched.  I was amazed how they could be in to work before 4 a.m. and did not finish until 5 p.m.

One particular story I remember with “Geno” is when one woman made some comment about how she loves the smell of cedar.  She said this as she walked by the little hole where we kept the cedar shims in the old Shed A. “Geno” and I both laughed as this was not cedar she smelled.  This area of the old shed was often used to relieve oneself.

A story with Larry is when Andy Strupp and I were pulling 2×12-24′ for a Badger job. It was winter and the wood was frozen.  I pried one loose and pushed it so Andy could grab his end. Being iced, the 2×12 really slid and slammed Andy’s fingers against a pile of wood.  I can still hear the naughty words from Andy.  Larry was nearby on a forklift and came flying over.  He jumped off the lift before it stopped to come to Andy’s aid.

Arlene Mantel – I reflect on their 50 years, the one thing that stands out to me is the incredible dedication these two gentlemen committed to ZBP. They started working right after high school in the yard, loading customers, receiving product from vendors, unloading rail cars, loading trucks, driving trucks, Inventory Management, maintaining the cleanliness in the yard, and daily maintenance on equipment and property.  They have done this for 50-plus years in rain, snow, ice, hot, cold, wind.  Incredible feat!

With the transition from Don, Bob & Joe Zuern (2nd generation) to their family, third generation, (David, Jim, Greg, Jenny and Tom) Eugene and Larry were very positive and supported the transition very well.

Joe Zuern, 2nd generation owner – As our company grew, Geno was the behind-the-scenes driving force who kept the outside and shipping running, as we sent Larry to break new ground at new sites. Watertown/Cedarburg, both of them played an important part in our growth over the many years.

Larry observed new employees and then couldn’t help but find a nickname for them.

Geno loved Sue’s egg salad sandwiches during Lent (Good Friday)

Although they were employees, we always thought of them as extended family.

Greg Zuern, General Manager  – Eugene and Larry are the true pioneers of ZBP’S reputation for great service.  I grew up working with Eugene and Larry and they taught me many important life lessons like being on time, working hard, and dedication to customer service. Most days for Eugene and Larry started at 4:30 a.m. and I recall many of times in my youth getting a wakeup call from Eugene, it was very important to Eugene and Larry that are deliveries were on time even if it meant waking up the boss (Don Zuern) and telling him to get his kid out of bed and down to work.  I want to truly thank Eugene and Larry for 50 years of service and dedication to ZBP.

Jerry Priesgen – Larry issues everyone a nickname and they all fit the person or their personality. Cricket,  Dude, Lot to Learn, Counter girl, Big Kahuna, Daisy, Pretty Boy, MVP, Mud Duck, Gramps, Chicken, Blondie, Doberman and Bullet.

Wolf’s last day was March 1. Breuer said he plans on sticking around a little bit yet. “I got a couple other guys I can count on,” he said.

Find local news 7 days a week at WashingtonCountyInsider.com

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Pat on the back for Brian Bell and 15-year-old daughter Liz

“Right place, right time,” according to Brian Bell. The co-owner of Cedar Lake Sales and his daughter Liz, 15, were presented with appreciation pins from retired DNR Wardens Rick Wolff and William Mitchell this week.

Bell said the story behind the story happened two weeks ago, Saturday, Feb. 9, in the Upper Peninsula in Bond Falls. The father and daughter were snowmobiling and riding back on the trail along the road when they saw three emergency vehicles.

“The Michigan D.N.R. guy locked eyes with me, walked over, said there was a bad injury accident and asked if he could borrow our sleds to get to the scene,” Bell said. The Michigan Forestry agent Zach Painter and conservation officer Josh Lopac with the Michigan D.N.R.  loaded a defibrillator and some emergency gear onto the snowmobiles and they were off. “That’s pretty much what we did,” said Bell.

For the next hour Bell and his daughter stood around listening to the scanner. “We heard they pulled her out on a sled and then we heard Flight for Life landing… somewhere,” he said.

The two officers returned and told the Bells, “You helped save a life today.”

Minimal information was released on the accident. For as much as Brian Bell could determine, a woman was seriously injured after crashing her snowmobile into a tree. “All we were told is there will be a lot of recovery ahead of her,” Bell said.

In hindsight, Bell said the accident just reinforces the safety needed when out on a snowmobile or any motorized vehicle.

Building formerly home to tavern in Barton has been sold

There was an interesting property sale recently in Washington County that carries with it a lot of history.

 

The two-story was originally built in 1870 and an addition was put on in 1991.

The latest property listing shows the parcel belonged to Catherine Barbercheck. If that name rings a bell….. it should.

For quite a few years the building was home to the Trio Bar. Records in the city assessor’s office show Bonnie Kudek was a previous owner.

Kudek, 64, died June 20, 2013. Her obituary read, “During her years of employment, Bonnie worked for Amity in West Bend, managed the Trio Bar in Barton for numerous years and was employed at the Citgo station in Kewaskum for many years.Bonnie will fondly be remembered as a “people person” who will be deeply missed by her family and by all who knew her.”

The location, 1727 Barton Avenue, was sold Jan. 20, 2019 from Catherine Barbercheck to C & A Wilde Investments LLC from Cedarburg. The property was assessed at $280,400 and was sold for $285,000.

What do you remember about The Trio Bar in Barton? And what was in the building immediately to the north where Sandy’s Barton Cafe is currently?

-Tom Brace – The building next door, which is Sandy’s, was Don’s Appliance.

-Cathy Larsen Barbercheck – It was also Lownik’s Restaurant before it became Sandy’s Cafe

Former Washington County Sheriff’s Lt. Mike Hetzel has died

Michael J. “Mike” Hetzel, 69, of West Bend, passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019, at Froedtert Hospital with his family at his side.

Mike was born on September 3, 1949, in Hartford. Mike did everything for everybody.   He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends and enjoyed activities including camping, riding his motorcycle, and working on DIY projects.    Mike worked for the Washington County Sheriff’s Department for 35 years and retired as a Lieutenant for the department in 2007.   He continued to work for the department part time as a special deputy.

Memorial services for Mike will be held at 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 2, 2019, at the Myrhum ~ Patten Funeral Home in West Bend. In lieu of flowers please contribute donations to the Lymphoma Research Foundation.

Paula Anderson wrote about Mike – “Anyone who ever had to call Lt. Hetzel on the phone knows his signature line and how he said it. “This is Hetzel.”  He was my second shift Lieutenant when I was brand new and he was always kind and patient with me, even after I accidentally paged the SWAT team out by mistake, AND put the sally port door down on the back of a squad.  Rest In Peace LT.

City of West Bend to sell Mutual Mall

There is an accepted offer on the old West Bend Mutual Mall, 1043 S. Main Street.

For many in West Bend the building is the former home of Larsons Family Furniture.  An advertisement from a phone book cover reads, “Where Value is Measured by Quality at Modest Prices.”

Photo courtesy Kirk Dyken

The phone book cover from 1962 shows an address of 723 N. Main Street.  Jim Larson moved the business to S. Main by 1964.

“I knew Jim Larson and when he built there on S. Main Street it was way out of town and everybody thought boy that’s way out there and he’s not going to have any business out there,” said Jerry Mehring of West Bend. “He built beyond Decorah Road and we thought what’s he doing way out there.”

This week the City of West Bend reviewed a purchase agreement from ICAP Development.

The city owned the property since purchasing the City Hall parcel, formerly West Bend Mutual Insurance. West Bend Mutual reportedly owned the location to the north for possible expansion.

“The building (Mutual Mall) is in need of lots of work,” said city administrator Jay Shambeau. “When we walked through with some commercial realtors they quickly said it had potential for redevlopment.”

Shambeau said ICAP Development and Dan Jeserig, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions and Development, have 90 days to do its due diligence and make a decision on the parcel. “They will work with someone to redevelop it,” said Shambeau. “Similar to other sales we did, like with Qualm Engineering, we set some standards.”

The purchase price of the parcel is $500,000. There was no assessed value because it was owned by the City and therefore tax exempt. “We talked about the $2 million minimum value regarding the new development and it will be great to get it back on the tax rolls,” Shambeau said.  ICAP has 90 days to make its decision.

On a history note: What do you remember about the former Larson’s Family Furniture?

-Jerry Mehring – “Jim had a lower level to his store and that was pretty unique for the time.”

–Cathy Lawton – “Larsons Furniture was a beautiful store. I bought pottery pieces made in Portugal from there and still have them to this day.”

–Joseph Hynst – “Kettle Moraine Fitness Center used to be on the lower level. Owned by Todd & Jay Pruitt.” 1980’s and early ’90s.

-Sarah Hupfer – “Don’t forget The Wooden Nickel.”

Saying goodbye to Leah Baughman from Interfaith Caregivers of Washington County

A bit of a shocker this week at Interfaith Caregivers of Washington County as Leah Baughman announced she is leaving her post to move back up north with her family.

Over the years Baughman has become a fixture at Interfaith and in the community.  Leah is always volunteering at local events. She and her family are often spotting at the Downtown West Bend Farmers’ Market or at the local chili cookoff.

A note from Baughman is posted below.

Dear Interfaith Family,

I wanted to take a moment to let you know I am leaving my position here at Interfaith in the next few weeks. My family and I will be moving to the Northwoods back to my roots and closer to family.

I can’t even begin to tell you how much I have enjoyed working at Interfaith, meeting all of the wonderful volunteers and working with some spectacular gals in the office. The past two years has been an amazing experience that has enriched my life and truly warmed my soul to see so many people giving their time and love to brighten the lives of seniors.

Even though I will miss all the clients, volunteers and great people I have met on this journey, I am looking forward to this new challenge and to starting a new phase in life.

Please keep in touch, I would love to hear from you!!

Thank You for everything! I wish you all the best.

Yours truly,

 Leah

P.S. Thank You!! Thank You!! Thank You!! I really don’t have the words for how much I have enjoyed working with and getting to know you all. This really is the most awesome and kindest group of people I have ever met.

Please stop in to say Good Bye at the March Percolate Friday, March 1 – 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.

I would love a chance to say Good Bye, please stop in at the next Percolate. If you are unable to stop then and would like to, please drop by when you can.

January 2019 Students of the Month at Holy Angels                      By Mike Sternig

Holy Angels School has named Sam Ciriacks, Tyler Sernig and Estella Lambie as the January 2019 Students of the Month.

6th Grade:  Sam Ciriacks – Sam’s teachers have noticed him growing into his role as a junior high student. While he was somewhat tentative at the beginning of the school year, Sam has shown ever-increasing confidence. Sam is always willing to volunteer for new experiences and participates strongly in all of his classes. Sam is an easy-going, friendly student who enjoys sports and video games.  He is especially interested in football, following the Packers and playing the sport himself.

7th Grade:  Tyler Sternig – Tyler is an intense competitor who sets high standards for himself. He takes pride in doing well in all of his classes, aiming for straight A’s every quarter. Tyler loves science, but all of his teachers applaud his participation, work ethic, and effort. Outside of the classroom, Tyler helps out at school by serving at Mass and working as a patrol. He likes sports, particularly baseball, participating in many summer tournaments.

8th Grade:  Estella Lambie – Estella is a likable student who has shown steady growth in organization and responsibility throughout her junior high years. Her teachers appreciate her willingness to work with a variety of partners, and her friendly personality. She is always in a good mood and spreads positive energy. This year, Estella has pushed herself outside of her comfort zone, particularly by joining Honors Choir. She serves at Mass. Her interest in helping others makes her consider teaching and pediatrician as possible careers.

Updates & Tidbits

– Primary Election Day, Feb. 19, was sunny and a bit chilly and in Hartford 117 of 2,694 registered voters went to the polls to cast a ballot in the race for Dist. 1 alderman. The top two vote getters Erin Wilk (48 votes) and incumbent Joseph Fulop (34 votes) advance to the April 2, 2019 election.

– If this doesn’t give you a shot of summer. The sign at Mills Fleet Farm on Highway 33 in West Bend reads, “Now accepting honey bee orders.”  It looks rather facinating. It looks like the bees will come via U.S. Postal in May. There’s a note to “warn your postmaster of the impending shipment.” I will have to review the ordinance in West Bend but good grief we just allowed chickens so for sure bees would be ok. Right?

Prepping for Lenten fish-fry season at The Columbian

The Columbian, 3245 Lighthouse Lane, is starting to prepare for the Lenten season.

Here is the Lenten Fish Fry Schedule at The Columbian:

March 8          Helping Hands Fish Fry Fundraiser  4 p.m – 7:30 p.m.

March 15        Bryan’s Buffet  4:45 p.m. – 8 p.m.

March 22        Beads of Hope Fish Fry Fundraiser  4:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

March 29        KC Third Degree Fish Fry  4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

April 5            KC First Friday Fish Fry    4:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

April 12          Helping Hands Fish Fry Fundraiser  4 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

April 19          Bryan’s Buffet  4:45 p.m. – 8 p.m.

The Helping Hands and Beads of Hope Fundraiser evenings include 2 to 3 piece of baked or fried cod.

Bryan’s Buffet features a $14 buffet includes sirloin tips, fish, chicken, salads, coffee, milk and desserts.

Just a little history note on the season of Lent:

“Lent is the six-week period leading up to Easter. It’s one of the most important times of year for many Christians around the world, particularly those within the Anglican, Catholic and Orthodox tradition.

“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, March 6, until its conclusion on Easter Sunday, April 21, Lent has been a traditional time for fasting or giving something up or abstinence.”

 Sold-out performance for John McGivern at UWM at Washington County

Emmy Award winner and master storyteller John McGivern performed in front of a sold-out crowd Friday night at UWM at Washington County.

The animated McGivern told stories about true kid life including paper routes, working hard because “you didn’t want to have the word ‘lazy’ written on your gravestone,” growing up in an Irish Catholic family, not being allowed another glass of milk because your dad said “we’re poor.”

Dressed in comfortable blue jeans, white shirt, brown sweater and jacket, McGivern brought the audience into his life of growing up on the east side of Milwaukee. The “closer to the river” east side Milwaukee not so much the Lake Michigan east side Milwaukee.

His family was his favorite fodder and the common thread was, aside the vintage vehicles like a Rambler and VW Beetle, his topics which melded into a rhythm we could all relate.

”I had to race from my morning paper route to school because every morning at St. Peter & Paul grade school we had Mass,” said McGivern. “I’d be running up the stairs with $7 worth of dimes in my pocket and there would stand Sr. Mary Ray Nitschke.”

Armed with a heavy Midwestern accent McGivern would impersonate his mother. He even told a delicate story of his aging parents, his father’s stroke, his dad’s love of a toupee and cleaning out his mother’s dresser.

”There were delicates in there,” he said of her  undergarments. “And underneath the underwear…. I found my dad’s teeth.”

Brazen, bold and boisterous. McGivern cracked himself up on stage which made it all the more fun for the audience.

“John McGivern is simply the best,” wrote Danette Daliege.

After reading from a white 3-ring binder a collection of some nasty emails directed to his show, Around the Corner with John McGivern, the house lights were brought up and McGivern fielded questions from the audience a’la Carol Burnett.

One woman had a strong suggestion that McGivern do a show on Allenton. Another man flagged McGivern as a fellow classmate at seminary, McGivern’s seminary teacher John Craig was even in the audience.

After the show McGivern came out to the lobby to meet with fans, shake hands, take photos and help create more memorable moments.

“Another great performance,” wrote Lisa Ryan.

“Wonderful night, tons of laughs, great show!” wrote Catherine Schmidt.

“He is a gem,” wrote Cathy Lawton. “Good clean humor.”

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Hey, I made the ATB!

Update on refurbishing West Bend Theatre sign

It felt similar to visiting an old friend in the hospital. The good thing to note is the historic West Bend Theatre sign is in good hands.

This week Cindy Wendland at Poblocki Sign Company in West Allis opened its workshop for a look at the progress being made on the historic West Bend Theatre sign.

Project manager Mike Carter gave an update on how metal reinforcements have been added, wiring stripped and holes patched.  “Essentially we’re refurbishing the entire sign,” said Carter. “We’ve torn out the electrical and we’re replacing it with high-efficiency LED bulbs and the structure that holds the sign is being rebuilt because of the age of it.”

The iconic theatre, 125 S. Main Street, dates to 1929.

The new frame for the sign, which includes a series of metal cross braces, was resting on saw horses at the foot of the vintage marquee.

“This will essentially attach to the back,” said Carter. “The framing had deteriorated and needed to be replaced.”

Carter indicated although the sign was weathered it was extremely well built.  “It’s an interesting construction. They don’t make them like this anymore,” he said.

The points of weakness where the sign attached to the metal braces on the theatre building also had to be reinforced.

Veteran journeyman Bob Poblocki has spent 38 years in the sign business. During a conversation with his uncle he found out his grandfather, who started Poblocki Sign Company LLC, actually worked for the company that originally built the West Bend Theatre sign.

“The sign used to have old incandescence bulbs,” said Poblocki. “We’ll come in with new drivers and LED bulbs.  It will look like the old bulbs but they will be high efficiency.”

After a bit of a review regarding rust and repair the conversation went a bit Jurassic Park with some Indiana Jones flare.

“There was a lot of spiders in the wiring; big ones,” said Poblocki. “We found some hornets nests… petrified ones, like they had been there for decades.”

The new sign will return its ability for chase lighting.  “It’s where they wire every fourth bulb in a series and it will do that again,” said Poblocki. Chase lighting is an illusion where lights give the appearance of “moving along on a string.”

Coming up in the next couple of weeks the paint will be matched, the sign sandblasted and painted, electronics reinstalled and the I-beams coming off the theatre wall on S. Main Street will be inspected.

Poblocki said the I-beams coming off the theatre building will be inspected and the canopy will be stripped as Poblocki Sign Company puts new sides on the face along with new lighting.

“Our current plans to reinstall are now looking at April but it depends on the theatre plans,” said Carter.

Xpressions Yarn, Bead, & Gift Boutique in West Bend is moving

Xpressions Yarn, Bead, & Gift Boutique, 264 N. Main Street, in downtown West Bend is relocating. “I’m moving to the WB Mercantile, 258 N. Main, right down the street,” said owner Andrea Gundrum Cybell.

“It was a blessing in disguise and I’m really excited as are they.”

The move will take place from March 5 – 15. This will be Gundrum Cybell’s third move. For about 10 years she was in Barton at 1779 Barton Avenue and then seven years at current location.

The move was prompted after a sale of the store fell through in 2017.

“I love my business and my accountant advised we not close but downsize and look for a smaller location,” she said. “The space at WB Mercantile came up with Jeremy and Brandy and now I’m reinvigorated and this is going to work out so well for everyone.”

Gundrum Cybell said she will be offering new classes and carrying some new products including Door County wine.

Headliners announced for two nights at Washington County Fair

Washington County Fair officially announced two nights of headline entertainment for the West Bend Mutual Insurance Silver Lining Amphitheater.

Kicking off three nights of National Entertainment on Thursday, July 25, will be Dylan Scott.

With his romantic, PLATINUM certified No. 1 hit “My Girl,” and GOLD-certified Top 5 smash “Hooked,” Scott has transformed real-life experience into chart-topping success.  .

Opening for Scott is Mitchell Tenpenny whose first single and No. 1 hit “Drunk Me” was named one of the New York Times best songs of 2018. The other Special Guest, Travis Denning just released his debut single “David Ashley Parker From Powder Springs” and when not touring is working on recording his debut album.

Rocking the Amphitheater on Friday, July 26, will be Stone Temple Pilots. The Opening Band will be announced at a later date.

VIP Reserved tickets for the Stone Temple Pilots show will go on sale for AIS Members on Monday, February 18 at 9 a.m. and to the public on Friday, Feb. 22 at 10 a.m. Tickets can be purchased online at http://www.wcfairpark.com/fair/vip-concert-tickets/ or at the Fair Park Office Monday-Friday between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Ticket prices range from $25-$35 and include admission to the Fair.

New luxury apartments in Slinger nearly complete                      By Olivia Wills

Construction is underway for the next phase of Ridgeview Terrace, a luxury-rental community located off Highway 60 and a quarter-mile east of I41 in Slinger, WI.

Each new apartment home features a one-car attached garage, private entry, granite countertops, plank flooring, in-unit washer and dryer, stainless steel appliances, central air, gas furnace, and private patio.

There are 9-foot ceilings in second-story units and a pet-friendly environment. Apartments should be ready for occupancy in May 2019. Ridgeview Terrace will be the fifth rental community developed and managed by Dittmar Realty, Inc. in Washington County.

Washington County Unveils New Logo

Washington County officially unveiled its new logo today during a ceremony at the Old Courthouse.

According to the county, “The logo includes a picturesque Washington County horizon with the sun.  Most recognize the iconic, rolling Kettle Moraine hills within the brand. The slogan, “Discover. Connect. Prosper.” strives to tie the community together by discovering the county’s natural beauty and rich heritage, connecting with each other, and prospering together with a strong business-and-education climate.”

Washington County Administrator Joshua Schoemann said this will help the county in a number of ways.  “The most important thing is that logo and brand. It’ll help Washington County in the future and bring people to Washington County such as tourists and new home owners.”

The county started with about 20 designs and then trimmed it to three. “We ultimately refined it and the County Board unanimously approved the design,” he said.

Washington County Board chairman Don Kriefall said the logo helps provide “an identity,”

“Even though we’re not the biggest county in Wisconsin, we’re the most innovative county in Wisconsin,” Kriefall said.

Now… do you remember what the old logo looked like? How about the explanation behind the old design? “It was unveiled while Doug Johnson was the administrative coordinator,” said former County Board Chairman Ken Miller. “It dates to 1997-98. It was supposedly a sunrise and the hills to designate the Kettle Moraine and the cursive letter W as an outstanding letter representing the county.” Miller said he thought “the county always needed a logo.”

“I also thought the county needed a flag…. but I never got that far,” he said.

Thanks to West Bend Police for protecting our community

A note of thanks to West Bend Police for keeping the community safe following a brief standoff Thursday, Feb. 14 at a duplex, 108 S. Seventh Avenue. The incident began around 11:30 a.m. with a two-vehicle accident at Seventh Avenue and Walnut Street. Police said one man walked away from the accident and into a home. Following the one-hour standoff one person taken into custody just after 1 p.m. The 31-year-old West Bend man was taken into custody and booked on a number of charges including hit and run causing injury, obstructing and outstanding warrants for violating parole.

Updates & Tidbits

– Kyle Loehr and Genna Alexander are the latest recipients of the J.O. Reigle Scholarships awarded annually by Regal Ware.

-Urban Vantage, 128 Wisconsin Street, is offering a rent special of ½ month free if a person rents during the month of February 2019. Contact 262-353-9732.

– Women’s Morning of Reflection is Saturday, Feb. 23 at St. Frances Cabrini. Starting with Mass at 8 a.m.

Guest Editorial | Pushing Liberalism in West Bend High Schools | By Owen Robinson

At West Bend High School, there is a required, one semester class called “U.S. Government and Law.” The course overview says:

In this course, students will experience how the wheels of government and justice work at the local, state, and federal level. Student activities and hands-on experiences will be emphasized to demonstrate how “We the People” are affected by and function within our government and law. Students electing to take Advanced Placement U.S. History have the option of taking this course in grades 10,11, or 12.

Good, right? I would argue that part of the reason for public education is to equip people to be active participants in our civic society, so this kind of education is good. One semester seems entirely inadequate, but at least it will provide kids with a rudimentary understanding of the levels of government, how legislation works, how the legal system works, etc., right?

Wrong. With one precious semester to teach kids about their government, the teachers at West Bend High Schools are using it as an opportunity to advocate liberalism to the impressionable teenagers under their care.

Here is a description from Esquire, of all places, of what happens in class:

The class recently took a political-opinion poll that places students on a forty-four-point spectrum from Conservative Reactionary (22C) to Liberal Radical (22L). About two thirds of the class were moderate to liberal, falling between 1L and 22L. Ryan says a few kids landed at the extremes: one “conservative radical,” a boy, and three “liberal extremists,” all girls.

Mr. Inkmann then has the students sing two songs written by another West Bend teacher. “The Liberal Song” is set to the tune of “Ode to Joy.” Mr. Inkmann offers to sing first before everyone joins in. “If I were a liberal, liberal, life would be so very great,” the lyrics read, “knowing that in liberal land this other man could marry me.” The students flip through their political-spectrum packets to follow along. One kid snaps his fingers, rocking out. “The Conservative Song,” set to the tune of “Beer Barrel Polka,” includes lines like “I hate social programs, they really make me want to puke / I would rather use the money for a two-ton nuke” and “Welfare is not good, before we had it, people tried / And I hope the biggest criminals are electrified!”

Yes, you’re reading that right. Here are the songs written by the other teacher:

The Liberal Song  Created in 2005 by Mr. Kieser  All Rights Reserved  Tune: Ode to Joy

If I were a liberal liberal, life would be so very grand.

I’d find someone I really loved and take that person by the hand.

   I would be so very happy, happy as a man could be.

   Knowing that in liberal land this other man could marry me.

If I were a liberal liberal, life would be so very great.

Wouldn’t ever need to work lots of free food found on my plate.

   I would never have to fear that to me harm ever’d be done.

   Knowing that in liberal land no one could ever own a gun.

If I were a liberal liberal, my friends and I would have it made.

Anti-nukes and the pro-choicers we’d protest in a big parade.

   We’d end pollution it’s so harmful, very harmful one can see.

   Come with me to liberal land we’ll all join hands then hug a tree.

 

The Conservative Song Created in 2005 by Mr. Kieser  Tune: Beer Barrel Polka

I’m conservative so listen up closely my son.

I never go out without my loaded shotgun.

  I hate social programs they really make me want to puke.

  I would rather use the money for a two-ton nuke.

I’m conservative so listen to what I have to say.

I think school children should say the Pledge  ‘Allegiance and should pray.

  I dislike high taxes and business regulations are obscene.

  I think women should stay home, pro-create, cook, and clean.

I’m conservative and I’m near the end of my little song.

But did I tell you, I hate gay-marriage and abortion’s wrong?

  And welfare is not good, before we had it people tried.

  And I hope the biggest criminals are electrified!

You can see the difference in the language. The liberal song is positive and uses words and phrases like “loved,” “happy,” “pro-choice,” “protest in a big parade,” “end pollution,” etc. The conservative song is negative and uses words like, “hate,” “women should stay home, pro-create, cook,” “hate gay marriage,” want to puke,” etc. This is a liberal’s caricature of conservatism. It’s a straw man that the teachers then spend the rest of class tearing down. It is not even close to an accurate description of modern conservative philosophy.

This is not isolated. I’m told that in Mr. Kieser’s class, the teacher who wrote the lyrics, it is much the same. The first few weeks of the semester have been spent having kids identify their stances on political issues and then the teacher will spend oodles of time “explaining” to the kids how the liberal positions are the better positions – without outright saying it, of course. The message to the kids is clear, however, if you hold conservative views, you are a violent heartless bigot.

This is not a rogue teacher. This is part of the planned course of study.

There are two outrages here. First, the obvious outrage that the lefty teachers are abusing their positions of authority to push their lefty views on kids. Second, they are wasting educational time on this junk instead of using it to teach the kids about their government and legal system.

It would be easy to fill four years of civics classes with just the mechanics of government and law – without even getting into political philosophies. And yet West Bend is choosing to fill class time with this and leave the kids ignorant about everything except the basics of our government and legal systems. Curriculum is about choices and the West Bend schools are choosing to advance liberalism with the scarce classroom time allotted to them.

Owen Robinson is a local blogger. You can find him at Boots&Sabers.com

 
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