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Foodies in Minocqua Get a Taste of the NorthSubmitted: 04/25/2013
Story By Lyndsey Stemm

Foodies in Minocqua Get a Taste of the North
MINOCQUA - For six years now, some of the best chefs in the area give you the chance to try their masterpieces. A Taste of the North was cooking in Minocqua tonight.

Twenty five food vendors made mouths water with everything from biscuits and gravy, to sauteed muscles, to chocolate fudge.

Trig's and Save More foods sponsored the event. They say this is an event they wouldn't miss.

"The reactions from the people that come here are unbelievable. There's a lot of camaraderie here. All the restaurants get together and know everybody else. So it's a good time and something everybody gets together for," says Tom Chandler, Trig's Store Director.

"We really like to get behind the businesses in the community. And the restaurants are a good lifeblood of this community too, and we like to be able to help out as much as we can," says Jim Gauden, Save More President.

Diners said the $25 ticket for the best food the Northwoods has to offer-- was well worth it.

"It's awesome. It's a great opportunity for us to share with our family and friends when they come up to visit where they should go, because we get a chance to see what everybody has," says Rick Engels.

The Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors run the event. Tickets sold out weeks ago... all 350.

The Ambassadors will choose a number of local organizations and people to donate the money to. Past recipients have been the Oneida County Dive Team and scholarships for Lakeland Union Students.



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MERRILL -
It might be hard to imagine running a business with your mother or daughter-in-law, but for one pair, a shared hobby helped create their DIY studio.

Mother and daughter-in-law duo Diane and Alicia Kucirek opened The Painted Door in Merrill just one month ago.

They take old, worn out furniture and make it new again using chalk paint.

The pair decided to open the studio when both of their houses started to get jam-packed with finished chalk paint projects.

Diane says anyone can learn how to give new life to old furniture with some lessons.

"You just learn as you go. It's so easy to repair anything you don't like, fix it, or change direction with it," says Diane.

Alicia says the first month of business was insane, mainly because of the community's support.

Support comes from outside of Merrill, too.

"We've had people come from all over Wisconsin saying, 'Tell me about this chalk paint!'"says Alicia.

The Painted Door has workshops every Thursday.

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RHINELANDER - Caramel apples seem to be a go-to treat this time of year, but a tough growing season almost made them hard to find this Fall.

Fun Factory Sweet Shoppe in Rhinelander only uses Granny Smith apples for its caramel apples.

Throughout the last few weeks, manager Judy Fritz says she had trouble finding enough green apples in the Northwoods.

Stores said bad crops and little rainfall made the Granny Smith apples scarce this season.

She eventually found some sold in bulk in Milwaukee to bring up north.

Fun Factory is very particular about their apples, so in the meantime, Judy hand-picked from the produce aisles in local stores.

"We always make sure that there are no bumps or bruises. We want a nice, perfect apple," says Fritz.


Judy says you shouldn't worry about getting your hands on one of her caramel apples.

Shipments of granny smith apples from Washington State have started to come in to a local store she works with.

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An employee says there were about eight workers inside at the time.

No one was injured.

"Flames were coming out of a conveyor area as high as the roof. We made an interior attack and knocked that flame down. Came in from the other side of the partition wall, then made another interior attack and knocked that down," says Chief Terry Williams.


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HARSHAW - Oneida County sheriff's deputies found three runaway sisters, ages 14, 14, and 12, in the woods in Harshaw just after 1 p.m. on Monday.

The sisters had been reported missing by their parents Monday morning. The parents had gone to wake the girls up for school, but instead found a note saying they had gone on an "adventure."

The missing girls triggered a search from the Oneida County Sheriff's Office Special Response Unit, Newbold Fire Department Search and Rescue, Minocqua Fire Department, Lake Tomahawk Fire Department, and Little Rice Fire Department.

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