WAUSAU - A gay pride parade planned for this weekend in Wausau raised some eyebrows and tense comments, but perhaps it was all for nothing?
No one seemed to know who the Gay Pride Parade planner was. He wasn't from Wausau, and he didn't reach out to any locals. That concerned the Wausau gay and lesbian community.
"We don't really know what he's planning. We don't know what kind of message the parade was going to send," said Shannon Thomas with Heart of Wisconsin Pride, "In bigger cities pride parades can be quite colorful, and that is fun, but I don't know if it exactly works for Wausau at this time."
So Thomas decided to host a march, at the exact same time. She wants to focus on equal rights.
"I wanted to be sure that the message of equality and equal rights for all was represented and so, at least for the March for Equality half of it, if they [the parade and the march] do come together I know for sure that there are over 300 people right now that will be peaceful protesters."
Then came another twist came to this story... We found out today, the original gay pride parade ISN'T happening.
The mysterious event planner Daxx Bouvier sent a letter to the city clerk two days ago saying he was cancelling the parade.
Thomas's March for Equality will still go on.
The original parade planner Bouvier never paid the fees he needed for the parade, or provided proof of insurance to the city. He's been unavailable for comment.
RHINELANDER - Building a robot may seem like a pretty lofty summer camp goal, but teens in the Northwoods love the technological challenge.
It's all part of a summer camp that's heavy on science and social interaction.
13-year-old Sean Timm says the eight day robotics camp at Nicolet College mixed the best of both worlds.
"I like technology a lot more than I do outside stuff," Timm said. "It's kind of nice to have technology like drones to bring me outside. It's really fun."
Camp Instructor, Mike Wojtusik has many years of experience as a technology education teacher and robotics advisor. He wants kids to see the importance in learning these skills.
"The kids are getting experience from a mechanical engineering side, electrical engineering side, design, prototyping," said Wojtusik. "We try and cover as much as we can about the whole entire system."
Learning about robotics isn't the only thing these students do. Some of them are also exercising skills they'll need in the future.
"I think it's a great experience for them to understand what really goes on in the real world as far as a career," Wojtusik said.
Certain careers that often require teamwork.
"Challenging part is working with a team because you don't always agree on the same thing," said 12-year-old Louis Malais. "When you build a robot you do the most teamwork than I think in any other job."
As their final project, students design and build their own version of a remote control robot.
They are required to work in teams to sketch a vision, make prototypes and design a working model with aluminum.
"It's not just you know operating a piece of machinery, it's learning how that machinery is put together," Wojtusik said.
Students are piecing together machines and building future careers at the same time.
"If I were to get an opportunity to do something like this in the future, I would definitely take it," Timm said.
Throughout the course of the camp, students were exposed to prototyping, brainstorming, modeling, safety and sketching.
The last day of the robotics camp is scheduled to be Thursday, July 28.
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