RHINELANDER - If you haven't already checked all the items off your Christmas shopping list, you should be careful when buying toys for kids.
Buying age-appropriate toys for young ones could mean the difference between life and death when they go to play with their new gift.
Public Health Nurse Dawn Van Den Heuvel says, "Make sure that there are no small parts to it. Even like stuffed animals, its better if the eyes are sewn on and the nose and the mouth. As opposed to buttons or anything hard that could come off and get in the baby's mouth and lodged in the baby's mouth."
Read the labels carefully because tags list age suggestions and safety standards designed to keep your kids safe.
Van Den Heuvel says, safety doesn't end under the tree though..."It's good to have ornaments and lights and stuff up higher if you've got little tiny ones that crawl and might get over by the tree. Tie the tree down so that it doesn't get pulled over and land on somebody."
Also, watch out for hard candy and other holiday treats posing a choking hazard for children.
And even if it's on little Johnny's Christmas wish list, nurses do not advise buying your kids a BB-gun this holiday season.
MEDFORD - You know curling from the Olympics. This week, master curlers from across the country are throwing their rocks in Medford. But this kind of curling you won’t see in Sochi, Mixed Doubles.
"Mixed doubles is fun. I really like it. It's really quick, everything happens quick and you're making a lot of precision shots because you don't have sweepers. I like that a lot and I like getting to play with Brady," said Cristin Clark.
FOREST COUNTY - Forest Count and Wisconsin Off-Road Vehicle Park Inc. (WORVPI) have found a 10,000 acre plot of land they would like to buy for an off-road park, according to WORVPI President John Schnorr.
Schnorr wouldn't discuss the exact location in Forest County, but said they would hope to buy the parcels by June 2014. Right now they’re contracting an engineering firm to evaluate the land.
"That's so environmental concerns can be met," Schnorr said. "We'll look at that as well as a pleasurable experience for an off-road visitor who is going to come up and spend hopefully a weeks vacation in Forest County."
Forest County leaders believe an off-road park could help bring more tourists to the area, and with that more money. The county has the fifth worst unemployment rate, 7.9 percent, in Wisconsin.
WORVPI used Ripon College to perform a feasibility study on the off-road park. It says the average off-roader will travel 300 miles to visit an off-road park. It also projected an off-road park could bring in nearly $28 million per year for Forest County businesses.
"It will take us some time to operate and open it up and develop the trails, the camp sites, the amenities inside," Schnorr said. "Realistically we could see an opening date of Memorial Day of 2015."
The park would host ATVs, motorcycles and other vehicles on off-road trails.
People can help fund the park by purchasing $150 charter membership passes. More than 30 have already been purchased. Schnorr says only 100 will be available.
"The pass will entitle the holder to a park pass, an annual park pass, for the first year when the park opens," Schnorr said. "It will give us some capital up front and afford them a discounted price down the road."
Even with the progress, Schnorr says the project is still in the early stages.
"If you are an optimist, you think a huge amount of progress has been made," Schnorr said. "But if you are a pessimist, not enough progress has been made."
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