MINOCQUA - The Lakeland Union Nordic Ski team started skiing the trails at Minocqua Winter Park 30 years ago.
The team has grown since then.
Only three members made up the team in the beginning and now they have almost 100 skiers of all ages.
"The first 5, 10 years we had three girls a couple of boys and really hardly a team," said retired coach Ken Schoville. Since starting the Lakeland Union Nordic Ski team in the 1980's Schoville has seen an increase in skiers.
"We started to develop a ski program for younger grades and from that we have continued to develop again both types of kids that come to the ski program those that are what we call skiers that already have the tools necessary to keep moving on and kids that are brand new to the sport," said Schoville.
The program has always skied at Minocqua Winter Park.
"They've been our home base for 30 some years and we continue to have good relationships with the foundation that operates it," said Schoville.
Schoville handed over coaching to Mike Bolger last year.
He says the team continues to bring in athletes- some who've never skied before.
"Going into it, I knew we had some talented skiers, but I would have to say, it's the new kids who have come out for this sport, and really bought into the program," said Bolger.
Bolger believes the program does more than just benefit the skiers. It benefits the community.
"With 4-6 inches of snow weekend Nordic ski people come, and they stay in hotels, they buy gas, they eat in restaurants, so it's a boom to the economy," said Bolger.
Schoville's glad Bolger wants to keep the ski team in the community.
"To me that long term continuity and growth and thinking that when I'm gone and move on then it's going to be here, it's going to be a part of the north, "said Schoville.
Last weekend the Lakeland Union Nordic Ski Girls team took first place at the Nordic Ski State championships in Rhinelander.
MERRILL - Most people enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner with family. But the Merrill firefighters spend their Thanksgiving at the station with their second family, their coworkers. Community members stepped in to make sure the firefighters still had a special Thanksgiving while they were working.
It might be Thanksgiving, but for the Merrill Fire Department, it's just another day
But it is a day with more turkey, stuffing, and pies.
"We had a couple of community organizations that dropped off meals for us which we're definitely grateful for," said firefighter and paramedic Bryson Cruise.
The job doesn't stop for firefighters and Thanksgiving is no exception.
So Park City Credit Union and Hands of Hope wanted to thank the firefighters for their service with a home cooked Thanksgiving meal.
PARK FALLS - Many families began their Thanksgiving Day with a run this morning. Topping off the holiday with a "trot" around town may not appeal to everyone, but for these families it was a way to spend time with one another.
"Trot now so we can pie later," said Steph Schultz, a runner in the Park Falls Turkey Trot.
Families used the Turkey Trot 5K in Park Falls as a way to bond.
RHINELANDER - Nineteen months ago, 10 police agencies surrounded the Tripoli home of Kenneth Welsh.
Police say Welsh caused a three-hour standoff, threatened to blow up his house, and threatened to kill his wife.
Later in court, he was convicted of two felonies and sentenced to three years in prison by Oneida County Judge Michael Bloom.
But now, those convictions and prison sentence have been erased. This month, while in prison, Welsh argued he didn't fully understand all the elements of one of the crimes to which he pleaded no contest, first-degree recklessly endangering safety. Welsh's motion put some of the blame on his defense attorney, Rod Streicher.
RHINELANDER - A number of Rhinelander police and firefighters will work a weekend morning shift in December and won't get paid for it. It's an extra task they're happy to help with.
The Rhinelander Police Department's Shop With a Cop program returns December 16. Police and firefighters take 20 third grade students from Crescent, Pelican, Zion, and Nativity schools shopping for Christmas presents at Walmart. The schools recommend students for the event.
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