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Tuning into a different kind of retirementSubmitted: 08/02/2013
Story By Lex Gray

Tuning into a different kind of retirement
RHINELANDER - From the outside, Jeff Santy's house looks like a typical retiree's dream: a view of the lake, and peace and quiet.

But Santy's retirement dream is a little different.

"You don't have to be a rock star to feel like one," Santy says.

Santy helps people feel and act like rock stars. He started teaching music and bringing bands together after he retired from teaching English at Rhinelander High School in 2006.

"Sometimes the kids come to me and say, ‘Here's four or five of my friends, we want to be in a band, we've got a name for the band, we've got matching jackets,' and I'll say ‘What do you play?' and they'll say ‘Oh no, no, that's up to you.'"

It's not always kids living the rock star dream.

"I've had a gal who was retired just a few years ago from teaching, and she said I've always wanted to be a drummer," Santy says. "She was 57 years of age and when she started, she said ‘I should have started this 50 years ago.'"

Carly Reich started playing guitar and keyboard when she was 15 years old.

"My brother had put ads up all over town looking for band members and he got no responses," Reich says.

Two years ago, Reich and her brother found Santy's Tunesmith Academy. Santy helped them bring their band, Violet Skies, together.

"I tried taking private lessons, I tried teaching myself, and I tried playing as a group lesson," Reich says."I think the main thing for me was, there's an obligation to the other people in your band to keep getting better and to keep up with what you've learned. So that makes me a lot less likely to slack off."

Tunesmith Academy is fun for the bands and fun for Jeff, but how does it fit in with the quiet Lake George community?

"We got a phone call once when we were pumping the music, and I thought ‘Uh-oh, there's the sheriff's department calling me and saying you gotta shut this down,'" Santy says. "And yet it was someone across the lake calling with a request. They wanted to hear a certain song."

A certain song that brings you back to a time when anything was possible.

"I think kids dream of being sports stars or rock stars," he says. "I can't help them with the sports star end of it, but I can help them with the music end of it."

Violet Skies and other Tunesmith Academy bands will play this weekend at the Oneida County Fair.

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 IN OTHER NEWS

TOMAHAWK - Lemon Bar and Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler can be more than just bakery desserts.

They're flavors at one Tomahawk ice cream shop.

The Windmill Ice Cream Shoppe will open its doors at 2:00 p.m. this afternoon.

Owner Pat Berg says a couple of people will be already waiting in line for the door to be opened.

It really picks up when the kids pass The Windmill after school today.
 
"They get home, parents bring them down here so we will have more kids and customers," says Pat.

Check the Windmill's Facebook page for its hours.


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RHINELANDER - Oneida County Sheriff Grady Hartman wants the job for another term.

Hartman submitted his nomination papers to the county clerk's office on Monday.

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MILWAUKEE - Vice President Mike Pence plans to talk about the Republican tax overhaul during a visit to Milwaukee Wednesday afternoon.

The event is sponsored by a group created to promote President Donald Trump's policies.

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"When you're mindful you're in the present moment," said eight- year-old Brooke Neumann.
 
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"[They're] learning how to accept life and take life as it comes and enjoy the present moments," said Sugar Camp third grade teacher Ali Pichowski.

This time out isn't a punishment. It gives students time to reflect on themselves.
The schools wanted a new and effective way to keep kids focused so it brought Mindfulness Practitioner Janele Dupuis in twice a week for four weeks.

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Dupuis uses breathing exercises and meditation to show kids different tools to deal with life. 

"They're in control of how they react or respond to something," said Dupuis. 

The project goes beyond the classroom.

"I was able to get angry easily," said Neumann. 

It's also helped Neumann deal with nagging siblings.

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WAUPUN - The remains of an unidentified woman found in a frozen creek in Fond du Lac County nearly 10 years ago will be exhumed this week at a cemetery in Waupun.

Sheriff's officials say forensic anthropologists will examine the remains of "Jane Doe" using techniques that weren't available when her body was found. Through chemical isotope analysis, investigators may learn where the woman lived and her approximate age. DNA testing can determine eye, skin and hair color, as well as genetic ancestry and face shape.

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WASHINGTON D.C. - 33 Korean War Era veterans, 50 Vietnam Era veterans, and 5 World War II Era veterans boarded the 31st Never Forgotten Honor Flight Monday morning. 

"[It's] unbelievable what's going on," said one veteran. 

Flight #8651 left Central Wisconsin Airport Monday morning for Reagan National Airport. From there, police escorts led buses filled with veterans from around north central Wisconsin to visit memorials in Washington D.C. They visited Korean, Vietnam, and Lincoln Memorials.

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WAUSAU - Ales, lagers, or stouts â€" every beer connoisseur has a favorite. But Tuesday, one ale garnered the most attention. 

Beer drinkers from far and wide gathered at Red Eye Brewing in Wausau to try something totally new.
Tuesday evening Red Eye released a beer unlike any other.

"A lot of you are here for probably the craziest beer release we've ever done in the history of Red Eye," said Brewmaster and Co-owner Kevin Eichelberger.

The beer is brewed in the same way as most. It's an American Pale Ale and it's fairly hoppy.

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