Bat Monitor Training Class In Eagle RiverSubmitted: 04/29/2013
Story By Shardaa Gray

Photos By Shardaa Gray

EAGLE RIVER - Bird watching can be a popular hobby in the northwoods.

But a group in Eagle River wants to find out more information on a different species that also flies.

People at Trees for Tomorrow had the chance to handle the equipment they will use to survey bats.

The purpose is to determine where bats are located and find as man as possible.

Teacher, Troy Walters says they don't have a lot of information on bats.

"I think there's a few threats these days that are really difficult for bats," said Walters.

"White nose syndrome and wind turbans and things like that are increasing problems for bats."

Saving bats from those threats is important.

Walters says bats serve a lot of purposes in wildlife.

"Number one they eat a lot of mosquitoes which is beneficial for us, but they do also eat some other pest on crops and so forth," Walters said.

"So they actually do provide not just an ecological service, but some of the monetary services as well."

Walters says you can survey anytime throughout the summer.

The next class will be sometime in May.

If you're interested in attending the class, you can call Troy Walters at 715-479-6456 extension 228 or email him at troy@treesfortomorrow.com.

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RHINELANDER - Harvest Hoedown started Saturday at noon at the Woodpecker Bar and Grill in Rhinelander.

The event had a hay maze, horse drawn carriage rides, food, and live music all afternoon.

"I think it's going great. We got a little sunshine right now. We got probably a couple hundred people here. People are buying food, spending money. It's what we're after," said Rhinelander Area Food Pantry Executive Director Guy Hanson.

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EAGLE RIVER - Eagle River hosted its 36th annual Cranberry Fest during October's first weekend.

Organizers say the weather this year brought in many more visitors.

"People come to this whether there's good weather of bad weather," said Executive Director of the Eagle River Chamber Kim Emerson. "And with this year being great weather, we had above-average crowds and it was just spectacular. We're so happy about that."

By 3 p.m. Saturday, the World's Largest Cranberry Cheesecake had already been devoured. Sales of slices go towards the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Wisconsin. 

Organizers said they also almost sold out of cranberries, but they said they would still have more to sell on Sunday. 

There were also dozens of craft vendors, food and wine and cranberry marsh tours.

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NEKOOSA - People in Nekoosa could go back in time this weekend.

Volunteers at Pointe Basse recreated a historical camp portraying lives of people from the 1700s and early 1800s.

Volunteers from all across the U.S. all had a piece of history to share.

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The Wood County Sheriff's Office tells us a sporting goods store owner walked in as the burglary was happening, just before 7 a.m. The suspects took off in a red Dodge pickup truck pulling a trailer with the stolen UTV. They crashed through several gates to get out.

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VILAS COUNTY - In July, Karen Wessel gave her life to save a boy from drowning in Vilas County's Star Lake.  Now she is being recognized for her heroism.

The Carnegie Hero Fund Commission announced Wessel as one of 22 recipients of the Carnegie medal.  It's presented to people who risk their lives to an extraordinary degree while trying to save the life of another.

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MERRILL - Firefighters need to be prepared to rescue people from more than just fires.

People can get trapped in tree stands, water, or a tight spot. 

Local fire departments respond to those emergencies.

Merrill's first Citizen's Fire Academy learned about these specialized rescues Thursday night.

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