"My dream is to be a professional basketball player."
That's a pretty common dream for a seventh grader. But what's uncommon about Max: he already has a back-up plan.
"I want to do something in mathematics if that doesn't work out."
That's why Max is at engineering camp at Northland Pines High School for the second year in a row. Josh Fuller has been running the camp for six years.
"I think the kids have a lot of fun, but we also do it in a way where they're challenged," Fuller said. "They're hands-on projects, they're building things, we're making them think outside the box a little bit."
Thinking outside the box prepares these kids for higher learning. The camp focuses on their STEM skills - science, technology, engineering, and math.
"We're trying to get kids excited about things we do at the high school that's STEM-related," Fuller said.
You might think it would be hard to get kids excited about going back to school in the summer. But they're actually encouraging each other to go.
"I'd heard about it from some seventh graders last year and they said it was fun," Max said.
"Word-of-mouth has helped this camp," said Fuller.
Now, Max can pass the word along.
"The kids here are always having fun and it's a great opportunity," he said. "I've just enjoyed it a lot, so it's a great thing to do."
STOUGHTON - Police in Stoughton are investigating a threatening letter that was sent to a black teenager, with a photo that depicted him as the victim of a lynching.
The letter had a Madison postmark but no return address. The family told the newspaper it contained a photo showing two men hanging from a tree, with a mob watching. A picture of the 18-year-old was superimposed onto one of the men.
MERRILL - When you think of movies you probably think of Hollywood, but one man from Northcentral Wisconsin is bringing his feature film to the local screen.
Wausau’s Jarrod Crooks not only makes movies, but he also stars in them.
His latest film, "Dispatched" is based off the Elvis Presley movie, “Girl Happy,” says filmmaker Jarrod Crooks. “My character Jake is sent to go watch my bosses daughter while she’s on vacation with a friend. Then an old enemy is kind of after him while he’s on vacation, so some things happen.”
Crooks made, "Dispatched" on a $5,000 budget and it’s full of romance, action, and comedy.
“My buddy would joke with me, ‘why don’t you just pick one genre man and then just go with it'," says Crooks. "I’m like because I want to make this movie how I want to make It'." "I actually like romantic comedies, I think they’re kind of fun, and I think they’re cute. I like action films because I’m a guy, and I like comedy because Jim Carey is great.”
Crooks is only 28 and has already made 4 feature films. His passion started when he was 12 years old.
“I went over to my friend’s house and he had a video camera. I was like oh we should make a movie, and at that time I was really into, “Wishbone,” says Crooks.
“We’d always remake our own literature pieces. Then I saw my first Jackie Chan movie and I’m like, alright it’s settled we’re doing action films from now on," says Crooks. “From then on it was just a love affair with the filmmaking.”
His latest film will be shown at the Cosmo Theatre in Merrill on Saturday at 5pm.
“The fact that I’m bringing it to central Wisconsin is great because this is where I grew up," says Crooks. "All my family and friends get to see it, so I’m very excited about that and you get to see yourself on the big screen what’s better than that.”
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