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.
STEVENS POINT - A former Portage County doctor could go to prison for sexually assaulting his patients. Wilton Calderon pled guilty to three felonies Friday.
Calderon was a caregiver at the Plover Family Practice until leaving it in 2015. He then moved to Connecticut.
At least seven women accused Calderon of sexually assaulted them during appointments. Some patients said Calderon placed his genitals in their hands and performed unwanted gynecological exams by penetrating them with his fingers.
SUGAR CAMP - Update Feb. 17, 2017 10:20 p.m. -- The woman who runs an Oneida County animal rescue could face animal mistreatment charges.
Oneida County Deputies booked Stephanie Schneider on Thursday. She is due in court on Feb. 27.
Last week, deputies removed 39 dogs from Schneider's "It Matters to One" in Sugar Camp and put them at the Oneida County Humane Society.
Police are recommending charges to the district attorney, which include failing to provide food and water, mistreating animals, and obstructing officers.
People who know Schneider say they can't believe this is happening.
"I'm just heartsick about this, and I'm sick at heart for her," said LynnAnn Thomas, a Sugar Camp resident who says she's friends with Stephanie Schneider.
"Those are her children. She would never, ever , ever mistreat them," Thomas said.
But that's exactly what police believe Schneider did. Last week they removed the dogs from the facility after a weeks-long investigation that was prompted by complaints and concerns from several people.
"People that had worked or volunteered there were concerned about the conditions that the dogs were in and the fact that they were not receiving food or water," said Oneida County Sheriff's Capt. Terri Hook.
Those accusations baffle Thomas.
"I been over there several times, it's always been meticulously clean, happy dogs," Thomas said.
Thomas believes whatever condition the dogs were in, they came to Schneider that way.
"She does get some really, really, really desperate cases, and I imagine that they take a long time to heal," Thomas said.
Thomas added she got her own dog from It Matters To One a few years ago.
"I got my little Hankey, he came in in really bad shape, and she wouldn't let me have him until he was nursed back to health," Thomas said.
Since the dogs were removed, It Matters to One posted certificates of veterinary inspections on its Facebook page for most of the 39 dogs. The Sheriff's Office has seen those and is including them in its investigation, which is ongoing and may not end soon.
"Just to ensure that all the dogs are healed and make sure they've received all the care they need," Hook said.
Newswatch 12 has reached out to It Matters to One and has been communicating with the rescue via email.
The state Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection is helping the sheriff's office with its investigation and will decide if the rescue can keep its license.
Newswatch 12 also reached out to the veterinarian who conducted the inspections for the rescue, but has not yet heard back.
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