Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Wabeno Rebuilds Icons Destroyed in StormsSubmitted: 05/26/2013
Story By Lyndsey Stemm


WABENO - People always remember the Town of Wabeno once they've been there, even if they were just passing through.

But the two larger-than-life icons that make the name Wabeno stick in people's memories were both destroyed by mother nature within the last year.

Now the town has nearly rebuilt both to all their former glory.

The details of how the gentle giant that watches over Wabeno got there, are foggy. But how he got destroyed is still fresh in everyone's mind. Larry the Logroller was felled by, well, a tree.

"Well it happened on a Thursday, I think. They called and says, 'Hey, I know you can fix anything. Larry got run over by a tree basically'," says Ron Piontek.

So off to Denmark, Wisconsin he went to undergo surgery.

"Larry had a broken neck and broken shoulder," says John Ehlinger, from Wabeno.

"I was kind of sad because I really liked Larry the Logroller," says seven-year-old Zachary Augustin.

Less than a year after the town lost it's even more historic band shell to heavy winds, the loss of Larry was a tough blow.

"It was kind of like after the band shell, what's next? It was like part of Wabeno was missing," says Park Board President Larry Rummel.

But auto body repair shop owner Ron Piontek logged hundreds of hours, and put Larry back together.

"I got 400 or 500 rivets in him to get him back into pieces. And then six gallons of fiberglass resin and three months of work," says Piontek.

The town unveiled Larry, good as new, Saturday.

"I thought he was really big and really cool," says six-year-old Audrey Bauagnet.

"I think it's awesome that they could redo him and everything," says nine-year-old Brianna Augustin.

"It's amazing. Kids love him. And evidently adults do too," says Rummel.

It's a new day in Wabeno. Larry stands sentinel once again and the band shell reconstruction should start back up within the week.



Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

ASHLAND COUNTY - Investigators want to know what caused a car crash in Ashland County Tuesday morning that killed a Northland College student.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - When police get called for an active shooter situation, they want to be sure they're prepared. Officers in Oneida County were trained to handle these crisis situations Tuesday afternoon at Nicolet College in Rhinelander.

We may not see active shooter situations in northern Wisconsin often.

But events like what happened at Antigo's prom about a month ago tell officers they always need to be prepared.

+ Read More

Play Video

IRON COUNTY - Tucked away in southern Iron County, many people consider the Turtle-Flambeau Flowage one of Wisconsin's best kept secrets.

When the Chippewa and Flambeau Improvement Company built the Turtle Dam 90 years ago, it flooded 16 natural lakes and impounded 14,000 acres creating the Turtle-Flambeau Flowage.

The company owned the land until the state bought the flowage and 114 miles of shoreline surrounding it in 1990.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Figuring out what you want to do for a living can be a tough decision for a high schooler.

That's why getting to work in a local business before graduating could be a big help.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - When high school senior Valarie Puza got her invitation to Rhinelander's scholarship award ceremony, she knew she had gotten some money to help pay for college.

She had no idea she would be going home with more than $30,000 in scholarship money.

$227,425 was awarded to 84 seniors at the annual ceremony.

Puza won seven scholarships, including the Gaffney Trust Future Teacher's scholarship worth $25,000.

"At first it didn't really hit me," said Puza. "But then I just thought about it, and I thought wow, that's a couple years of college paid for. And it's a good opportunity that I got any money, let alone the amount that I did."

+ Read More

Play Video

SHAWANO COUNTY - In April, the Unified School District of Antigo school board voted to close Mattoon Elementary. 

Some community members weren't happy about that.

Now, the Village of Mattoon and two other people hired a lawyer and filed a lawsuit against the district and the board.

+ Read More

Play Video

ANTIGO - When the lieutenant governor and state lawmakers visit Sartori Foods, the company puts them to work.  Tuesday afternoon Rebecca Kleefisch, Rep. Mary Czaja (R-Irma), and Rep. Gary Tauchen (R-Bonduel) put on hair nets and rubber boots to rub Asiago cheese and learned a thing or two about what keeps the family-owned business churning.

"This is really a lot of fun and we got our hands dirty today," Kleefisch laughed.

Czaja chose Sartori as the first stop of a day-tour of Antigo-area businesses. 

"I think [Sartori] is kind of one of the stars of the 35th Assembly District," Czaja said.  The Irma Republican's main goal of Tuesday's tours: turn workforce data into names and faces.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here