Former Area Boston Marathoners React to BombingsSubmitted: 04/15/2013
Story By Newswatch 12 Sports

Former Area Boston Marathoners React to Bombings
BOSTON - What most people would say is the unthinkable happened in Boston on Monday. Just as thousands of marathoners were crossing the finish line, two bombs exploded.

Three people were killed, and more than one hundred people were injured.

Those numbers could rise.

It ruins what has become an annual tradition.

Nearly 27,000 people took part in the historic race. All 50 states and 73 other countries all represented.

It's a sad time for all Americans. For former Boston Marathon runners from the Northwoods, it's even tougher.

"It's hard to comprehend something like that happening at a marathon," says Dan Lemke of Tomahawk. He ran the Boston Marathon in 2003. "It's a horrible crime, and a sad day in the history of U.S. Sports."

Blaine Nyberg of Minocqua ran the Boston Marathon the last three years. He missed this year's race because of medical issues. However the four other runners in his group were back this year.

"The first thing I did was text Matt Thomas and Dr. Rick Fossen and asked them if they were o.k.," adds Nyberg. "Both texted me back right away and said they had already finished and were a block away from the initial blast."

The other runners in the group were approximately 20-30 minutes behind those who were near the finish line. They were rerouted to another street to meet their families. The group of runners were all safe.

Police in New York City and London are stepping up security following explosions at the Boston Marathon. The London Marathon is Sunday.

Security at the White House was also beefed up after the explosions. No one was allowed to walk on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Monday night's NHL game in Boston was postponed. Tuesday
night's NBA game also in Boston was cancelled.

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RHINELANDER - This time of year, winter activies start to wind down and the summer fun hasn't quite started yet.

That's why Fisher's Resort and Bar on Lake George in Rhinelander enjoys having it's annual ice golf tournament each year.

"In year's past, March is always kind of a slower season up here in the Northwoods so we figured we'd create an event and put efforts towards a local organization," said Fisher's Resort and Bar owner, Russ Fisher.

That local organization they raise money for is the Hodag Sno-trails snowmobile club.

This year, the tournament had it's biggest turn out.

30 teams came to play, including first timer Dennis Herrmann who lives right across the lake.

"This has nothing to do with golf, I can tell you that right now. But it's a challenge for all the obvious reasons. But you do it for the charity, you do it for the fun and it gives everybody the chance to get out," said Herrmann.

This year they cut it down from 18 holes to 13 so people could get inside faster to enjoy the chili and the raffle items after their round of golf.

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WAUSAU - When you think of Wisconsin, two things might come to mind - beer and snow. 

The Granite Peak Ski Area in Wausau decided to combine the two and host an annual brew fest. 

Andy Ledesma is the head brewer at Red Eye Brewing Company in Wausau. The Granite Peak Brew Fest is one of the many perks of his job.

"No other beer fest is like this, that's for sure," said Ledesma.

He definitely wasn't alone serving more than 40 beers on Saturday. 

Jeff Geurink works for South Shore Brewery in Ashland. They've been around for 20 years, but they wanted to make this brew fest a part of their line up.

"Get our name out there and make sure people are enjoying our beer and get as much information as possible out about our brewery so then when they go out and get a beer, they remember us," said Geurink.

Something everyone will remember from the brew fest was the set-up.

"Snow bar?! You can't get that in the summer time," said Roland Bruhnke.

He's right. Most beer festivals are in the summer. But when it's still feeling like winter in March, Granite Peak turns lemons into lemonade, or more appropriately, hops into beer.

"I think it definitely helped that when they get to the bottom of the hill, you see a bunch of beer," said beer salesman Jesse Bartnik.

So even though beer and physical activity isn't the best combination, dozens of people were loving it this weekend.

"The winter, the skiing, the beer, it's all one big package all rolled into one," said Bruhnke.

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MADISON - The Conservation Congress plans to ask attendees at its spring hearings whether lawmakers should charge people to use state land and eliminate group hunting.

The congress asks hearing attendees every year for their positions on current outdoors issues. The answers are advisory only.

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RHINELANDER - An Oneida County judge set a trial date for a Rhinelander woman charged in the death of her toddler stepson.
Ellen Tran's trial is expected to start with jury selection on October 19.

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CRANDON - Planners in Tomahawk dreamed about a bike loop around the city starting in the early 2000s.

Two decades later, it's finally about to happen.

After more than 15 years of negotiation, the city bought a critical piece of land from the Canadian National railroad.

It will allow the city to start building a 4.6 mile bike loop around the city.

"It's a win-win for everybody. There was a little frustration from by position, but you just...kept your foot on the gas through the whole process," said Tomahawk Public Works Director John Cole.

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RHINELANDER - The warmer weather might have you spending more time outside with man's best friend.

But the remaining snow and ice could increase the risk of injury for dogs.

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RHINELANDER - Kathie Woodford keeps track of each time she donates blood.  Her visit to a Rhinelander blood drive on Friday marked her 26th pint.

"I just recently got my third gallon," Woodford said.

The universal donor (Woodford has O-negative blood) likes to give as often as she can, but Friday's blood drive was one she simply couldn't miss.

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