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home : news June 24, 2016

Council approves plans for 72-unit apartment complex
Jamie Taylor/River NewsThomas Wood, an engineer with Harris and Associates, answers questions from members of the city planning commission Monday about his company’s designs for a 72-unit apartment complex on Driscoll Road.
Jamie Taylor/River News

Thomas Wood, an engineer with Harris and Associates, answers questions from members of the city planning commission Monday about his company’s designs for a 72-unit apartment complex on Driscoll Road.

The Rhinelander City Council approved zoning and conditional use permit requests Monday evening clearing the way for the construction of a 72-unit apartment complex on 8.14 acres of land at the end of Driscoll Road. (subscriber access)
Saturday, June 18, 2016

RFD honors 7-year-old house fire hero
When Rhinelander firefighters were dispatched to a house fire at 335 N. Brown Street Tuesday afternoon they were told that there were three children possibly trapped inside the burning upstairs apartment. It was every firefighter's nightmare, but when they arrived on scene the crew learned all of the children were safe, thanks to the actions of an unlikely hero.
Friday, June 24, 2016

Commission approves Expera CUP
Expera Specialty Solutions' request for a conditional use permit (CUP) to modify the former Printpack Incorporated facility at 114 W. Kemp Street cleared its first hurdle Tuesday afternoon when the city's planning commission gave its unanimous approval.

(Subscriber access)

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

7-year-old boy helps younger siblings escape Brown Street house fire (UPDATED)
The quick thinking of a 7-year-old boy saved several lives Tuesday afternoon when a fire broke out inside a Brown Street residence.

According to Deputy Chief Jim Plautz of the Rhinelander Fire Department, a call came in at 4:05 p.m. Tuesday reporting a structure fire at 335 North Brown Street.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Streetscape project reaches milestone
The downtown Rhinelander Streetscape project hit a milestone recently when Courtney Street reopened and a portion of Stevens Street was closed. (subscriber access)
Saturday, June 18, 2016

Make way for kwik trip
The former Genisot Surveying building at 1512 Eagle Street was demolished this week to make way for the city of Rhinelander's second Kwik Trip store.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Expera requests CUP for old Printpack building
A public hearing is set for June 21 on an application filed by Expera Specialty Solutions for a conditional use permit for the former Printpack Incorporated facility at 114 West Kemp Street, fueling speculation about what use the building would serve if it were to change hands. (subscriber access)
Thursday, June 16, 2016

Rhinelander man drowns in Lake Superior
MARQUETTE, Mich. (AP) - Authorities have released the names of two people who drowned in the fierce waves of Lake Superior, including a Rhinelander man who died while trying to save others off Michigan's Upper Peninsula.
Thursday, June 16, 2016

Human Service Center looks to be cornerstone for family care
For several years, the Human Service Center in Rhinelander has contracted its Birth to 3 program with Headwaters Incorporated, but, beginning Oct. 1, the program will transition to the Human Service Center.

Kelly Von Oepen, developmental disabilities coordinator for the Human Service Center, explained that the move has been discussed for several years and will provide families and children with continuous care. (subscriber access)

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Local church to host prayer service for Orlando victims
First United Methodist Church in Rhinelander (724 Arbutus St.) is holding a prayer service this evening for the victims of the Orlando shooting.
Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Water leak causes ice arena to run up $7k bill (corrected)
An undetected leak in the plumbing at the Rhinelander Ice Association ice arena sometime between January and April resulted in the loss of over 4,000 gallons of water over the normal sewer usage and ran the facilities' water bill to $7,162.10 for the billing cycle. (subscriber access)
Saturday, June 11, 2016

Severe thunderstorm rumbles through Rhinelander
A severe storm rumbled through Rhinelander Friday afternoon. High winds down power lines and caused tree branches to break off.
Friday, June 10, 2016

Bad weather, construction can't hold back block party
Despite the threat of rain, and the need to move from out in the street to inside the Hext Theater, Finnish reggae band Conga Se Menne brought an island vibe to downtown Rhinelander Saturday as Downtown Rhinelander Inc. hosted a block party.

The theatre was filled almost to capacity as the band took the stage at 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

PHOTO: Overturned dump truck
An overturned county highway department dump truck overturned Monday on County Road K at the intersection of County Round N.
Monday, June 6, 2016

Hodag gets claws back in elaborate pedicure
A local landmark has been restored to all its fearsome glory following an incident of vandalism last winter, thanks to the donated services of a local artist.

Local sculptor Chuck Williams reattached four claws to the Hodag statue, which sits in front of the Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce, Thursday morning, then came back Friday to finish blending the repairs into the existing statue. (subscriber access)

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Downtown merchants fighting through construction-related downturn
While Rhinelander's central downtown area remains a jumble of torn up streets, barricades and detour signs, the majority of businesses in the affected area are doing the best they can to keep a "business as usual" attitude despite a marked decrease in customers.

A number of business owners were hesitant to speak to the River News on the record, but several did say they have been struggling to attract customers since the $9.8 million infrastructure upgrade project, which affects a 20-block area, got underway in late April. (subscriber access)

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Council throws curveball in debate over softball field
Supporters of a proposal to build a second softball field at Pioneer Park were dealt a surprise Tuesday from the full Rhinelander City Council.

Instead of scheduling the increasingly controversial matter for a public hearing, the council, at a special meeting, referred the issue back to the parks, building and grounds committee for further consideration. (subscriber access)

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Ceremonies in Rhinelander area pay homage to fallen soldiers
As it has for generations, the Rhinelander community paused Monday to remember the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for freedom.

This year's ceremony was held at the Rhinelander High School auditorium and drew a large, respectful crowd.

As people filed into the school, the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts held doors open and handed out programs. (subscriber access)

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Stuck in the woods
The Newbold Fire Department, Rhinelander Fire Department ambulance and Oneida County sheriff's deputies responded to the scene of an accident on Wisconsin Highway 47 and Hillside Court Tuesday afternoon. The vehicle left the roadway but the sole occupant was uninjured. The call came in at 4:14 p.m.
Thursday, June 2, 2016

Smooth ride
The intersection of Stevens Street and Timber Drive was closed late last month so city street department workers could paint lines, grind the edges of the roadway and blow dirt away to create a clean surface. Musson Brothers, Inc. then put an overlay on the blacktop for a smoother ride. At top, city workers prep the road. Above, motorists enjoy the new smooth road.
Thursday, June 2, 2016

Fire destroys mobile home
A mobile home on Pelican Ranch Road in the town of Pelican was destroyed by fire late Tuesday morning.
Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Enforcement of parking, nuisance violations to start in June
Residents of the city of Rhinelander who have allowed their yards to resemble junkyards or who continue to violate the prohibition against parking on front lawns have a very short amount of time left to clean up their act before the city sends them a letter that could lead to a fine.

Fire chief and building inspector Terry Williams told the city's Protection of Persons and Property committee May 24 that he is prepared to complete a visual inspections of every property in the city. (subscriber access)

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Panel discusses need for long-term plan for city parks
While the Rhinelander softball program's request for a second softball diamond in Pioneer Park dominated discussion at Monday's meeting of the city's Parks, Buildings and Grounds committee, the panel also addressed the overall direction the city wants to take with respect to its parks. (subscriber access)
Saturday, May 28, 2016

City says streetscape project on schedule
Downtown business owners received a bit of good news Wednesday from managers of the downtown utility/streetscape project. The multi-pronged project is running on schedule, if not slightly ahead.

The merchants who attended the project status meeting at the Hext Theatre appeared to be somewhat relieved by the news, but several also expressed concern that customers don't know their businesses are open during the construction. (subscriber access)

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Planning commission to hold hearing on revised comprehensive plan
The city of Rhinelander will hold a public hearing Aug. 23 to get input from residents on the city's comprehensive plan.

The hearing date was selected by the planning commission at its meeting Tuesday.

The city has been working on updating the plan since the fall of 2015. (subscriber access)

Saturday, May 28, 2016

State looks to build 'Bridge' from school to work
While many seniors preparing to leave high school in the coming weeks know that their next step in life will be a four-year university, others have no idea of what kind of job they want. (subscriber access)
Saturday, May 28, 2016

No decision: Panel moves softball field debate to City Council
It will be up to the Rhinelander City Council to resolve the intense debate over whether a second softball field should be built in Pioneer Park.

The simmering controversy over the field drew a standing-room only crowd to the council chambers Monday for a meeting of the city's Parks, Buildings and Grounds Committee. (subscriber access)

Thursday, May 26, 2016

City police to particpate in 'Click it or Ticket' campaign
The Rhinelander Police Department will team up with hundreds of law enforcement agencies throughout Wisconsin for the annual "Click It or Ticket" safety belt enforcement campaign through June 5.

"Our goal during the mobilization is not to write more tickets but to save lives and reduce injuries through voluntary compliance with Wisconsin's mandatory safety belt law," department officials said in a press release.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

May is National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month
More than a half million Wisconsin residents have a motorcycle license or permit. As motorcyclists return to the road for this riding season, their safety is a major concern. Last year, 81 motorcycle riders and passengers died in Wisconsin traffic crashes, according to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT).
Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Fair or foul? Spat over proposed softball field goes to committee
Pioneer Park is one of the city of Rhinelander's most important recreational and historical areas. It is home to a museum complex where the community's logging history is preserved and it has been a favorite play area for generations of local children. It's also the home of the county fair, the Hodag Farmers Market and the Hodag softball program. (subscriber access)
Saturday, May 21, 2016

City unveils plan for Green Bay Packers monument at Sarocka Field
These days the only football action at Sarocka Field is of the Pop Warner variety, but at one time the picturesque park was the epicenter of Rhinelander football culture. It was home to the Rhinelander High School team for decades and in 1935 the Green Bay Packers held practice there in the shadow of the Oneida County Courthouse dome. Some believe the 1935 practice sessions were the Packers first formal preseason training camp. (subscriber access)
Wednesday, May 18, 2016

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