RHINELANDER - Usually, being escorted by a police officer in a store is not a good thing... That is unless you're shopping with him.
"We get a group of well-deserving children, about 20 children, and we take them Christmas shopping,” said Officer Chad Brown of the Rhinelander Police Dept. “We encourage them to buy presents for themselves, and if they would like, for their immediate family."
It's called the "Shop with a Cop" program. For the 4th year, Rhinelander police and firefighters will buddy up with 3rd graders to make their Christmases a little brighter- while giving them a different view of police.
"They get partnered with either a police officer, or a firefighter, or sometimes both... It helps develop a relationship with the police officers and children, they get to meet us on a personal level, they get to see that we're not here only in bad situations, we’re here to help, we’re here as friends."
After shopping with their new big buddy, kids head back to the station for help wrapping their toys. They leave with gifts in hand, and memories for a lifetime.
"They love it, they come here just excited... I still have kids come up to me and they remember that they went shopping with us and they tell me how they're doing and they're so happy to see us," said Brown.
The shopping trip is December 8th this year, but to make it happen they need contributions from the community.
You can drop off or mail a check to the Rhinelander Police department by December 3rd to help a kid shop with a Cop.
Address envelopes to Chad Brown, Rhinelander Police Department, 201 North Brown Street Rhinelander, WI 54501. Make checks out to the Rhinelander Professional Police Association, care of Chad Brown.
VILAS COUNTY - More people today use maps on their phones when traveling, but some people still like those paper maps.
The Vilas County GIS just made 15 maps of the area. They give people the option to download and print them at home. A map of Boulder Junction even won an award at the 27th annual Wisconsin land Information Association conference in Middleton.
“There was a lot of interest in creating a portable, easy to use map atlas that responders, town crew, delivery entities, could take out in the field with them and find any address point any road name any water body,” says Rebecca Nordine, Vilas County GIS Specialist. “Something that they could bring out along out in the field with them.”
The atlases will give people an easier way of looking up addresses across Vilas County.
“We do offer up online mapping and that's great but if you get into an area where there's no cell phone or no internet service you'll need something a map or paper map to fall back on,” says Nordine.
Each atlas will be updated at the beginning of the year.
To download a copy of the atlases for FREE you can visit: http://vcgis.co.vilas.wi.us/vcom/.
WOODRUFF - The Olympics might be over, but the Paralympics are underway in Sochi. Teachers at one local school are using the Olympic spirit to teach students about other countries.
Students at North Country Montessori celebrated International Day Friday morning. The students learn about different countries throughout the school year.
"The children at Montessori do a huge unit on geography and world culture, and we used today as a way to express the information that we found and things that we've learned," says North Country Montessori director Candice Henderson.
This year's theme was the Sochi Olympics.
Each student dressed up as a different country and sang songs in Russian.
This was the school's 30th annual International Day celebration. It ended with a potluck meal featuring ethnic food from different countries.
ST. GERMAIN - We all love our favorite sports teams. But what would happen if you had to dress up in your rival's gear? That's exactly what happened to Bears fan, Jerry Healy.
He's the janitor at St. Germain Elementary School. Healy challenged the students to raise over $700 for charity. If they did he'd wear the green and gold.
“Mr Healy you're unbelievable thank you for doing this,” says Jerry Healy, St. Germain Elementary School Janitor. “One kid said, "all this is disgusting Mr. Healy,” and another little kid who's a diehard Packers fan came up he came up and he's got an orange and blue pair of pants on and goes I'm a bears fan, today you're a packer fan, and that was pretty cool he's in second grade.”
As you can see the students surpassed the goal. The money went to pennies for patients. It’s an organization that supports people diagnosed with leukemia. The challenge brought the whole school together.
“Well I think they rose to the occasion they understood they're helping others in an easy but fun way. They came together as a class, as a whole school and just had a lot of fun with it,” says Jeff Waltz, a third grade teacher at St. Germain Elementary School.
This wasn't the first time Jerry got to dress up as a Packers fan. He did the same thing a few years ago when students accomplished a reading goal.
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