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TOP STORY

'Keep it Green' wreath in Merrill reminds people to stay safeSubmitted: 12/25/2014
MERRILL - More than 400 people across the country die in fires during the holiday season each year.

The fire department in Merrill wants to help change that.

Every year they hang the "Keep It Green" wreath outside the department. The wreath is completely covered in green bulbs.

The top bulb is white to honor the firefighters who have died while serving their community.

The green bulbs remind people to stay safe, especially during the holiday season.

"If there are any structure fires between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day, we remove a green bulb and install a red one to signify. And, those bulbs are to remind everyone to be fire safe and fire conscious during the holiday season," said Chief Savone.

Many fire departments in the Northwoods also hang green wreaths outside the department.

During the holiday season, especially today, be sure to be conscious of fire safety. The wreath reminds you to check your smoke detectors, remember Christmas tree safety, and clean your wood stoves.

"There is no good time to have a fire. It just seems we have quite a few fires during the winter period. mid-December to mid-January is the largest percentage of home fires or structure fires there are," said Savone.

So far this holiday season, Merrill has had one fire. They had five this time last year.


Story By: Jeanine Ilacqua

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 LOCAL NEWS
Rhinelander man arrested for sex registry violationSubmitted: 12/24/2014

MADISON - Police arrested a Rhinelander man last night for failing to register as a sex offender.

The U.S. Attorney for western Wisconsin tells us 58 year old Gregory Porter was indicted by a federal grand jury earlier this month.

They accuse Porter of traveling between several states over the last couple of years, without updating his sex offender registration.

The charge carries a maximum penalty of ten years.

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Remember to recycle gift wrap, boxes this ChristmasSubmitted: 12/24/2014

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RHINELANDER - The National Retail Federation expected Americans to spend nearly $620 billion on holiday retail sales this year.

Shoppers will put many of the gifts they buy in boxes or wrap them in paper.

Local landfills will see a lot of those boxes and paper come in after the holidays.

Not everyone knows or thinks to recycle those items.

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Oneida County snowmobile trails open- some spots dangerous to ride onSubmitted: 12/24/2014

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MINOCQUA - Oneida County snowmobile trails opened Tuesday at 5 p.m., but some parts of the area won't be open to riders.

Minocqua Forest Riders is one of a few clubs in Oneida County.

The club manages 160 miles of trail.

About a mile of the trail it covers is dangerous to ride on.

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List of free Christmas dinners in the areaSubmitted: 12/24/2014

NORTHERN WISCONSIN - Tomahawk:
-At Grace Lutheran Church of Tomahawk
-11:30a.m.-1:30p.m.
-Reservations encouraged
-Call Debbie at 715-453-4066

Rhinelander:
-At Rhinelander Armory
-11a.m.-1:30p.m.
-Call 715-282-5904
-Home delivery available

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Pantry distributes more food for the holidaysSubmitted: 12/24/2014

ANTIGO - Volunteers at the Antigo Area Community Food Pantry want to make sure everyone in Langlade County has enough food for a holiday meal. The pantry spent weeks preparing for its big holiday food distribution Wednesday.

The pantry never knows what donations its going to get. But volunteers always expect more donations this time of the year.

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Helpful Holiday Tips: how to avoid weight gainSubmitted: 12/24/2014

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MINOCQUA - Ham, Turkey, mashed potatoes, Christmas cookies and fudge all sound delicious.

You might find many of those on your table during the next few days.

As part of our Helpful Holiday Tips series, Marshfield Minocqua Clinic Diabetic Educator and Dietician Jaimee Gregor offers some tips on how to avoid weight gain during the holiday season.

Click "Play Video" to learn the tips.

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Deadly 2 car crash leaves one deadSubmitted: 12/24/2014

THREE LAKES - A Three Lakes man died from a two car accident in Three Lakes Tuesday.

Three Lakes Police Chief Scott Lea says 75-year-old Glenn Hoffmann was driving a pickup truck northbound on Highway 45. Lea says he lost control crossing the centerline into oncoming traffic.

It happened around 1 p.m. at the intersection of Highway 45 and Big Lake Road. Maribeth Carroll of Watersmeet, Michigan couldn't avoid the crash in the southbound lane.

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