State Senate passes crossbow bill Submitted: 09/19/2013
Story By Dan McKinney

MADISON - Starting next year deer hunters may have a new way to hunt.

The State Senate approved a bill that would allow hunters to start using crossbows for the 2014 hunting season.

The Assembly and Governor Walker still have to approve it. Right now, only senior citizens and handicapped hunters are allowed to use crossbows.

"It's a way to increase opportunity for folks that, for whatever reason, might not be able to draw or aim a traditional bow," said DNR Wildlife Biologist Jeremy Holtz. "As long as it gives people a secure shot and a good clean kill, and gives them a chance to get out in the woods and enjoy hunting, the department is definitely in favor of increasing opportunities for everyone."

Some people argue allowing crossbows will lead to overcrowding in the woods.

"I see no problem with it. I think if we get more people out there or we give them more options, and give them a good way to kill a deer, and participate in the hunt why wouldn't we want to do that," said Holtz.

Crossbows would only be allowed during the bow hunting season.

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MILWAUKEE - A published report says unauthorized improvements have been made to a footpath on state land that a donor to Gov. Scott Walker has been trying to buy.

A spokesman for business executive Elizabeth Uihlein acknowledged that workers at her adjoining property may have cleaned up the trail slightly.

But the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1Z18WU8 ) reports those who have seen the trail say the improvements are significant.

Uihlein is seeking to buy 1.75 acres along Rest Lake, where the footpath is located. But a tentative deal with the Department of Natural Resources was put on hold after critics raised questions.

A DNR spokesman says the agency inspected the site on Thursday and found an "established trail." He declined to say whether the department had talked to Uihlein or her representatives.

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MERRILL - Merrill residents might have heard a lot of music in town today.

Merrill High School hosted the Merrill Marching Invitational. Three high school marching bands took over the football field at Merrill High School Sunday.

Antigo, D.C. Everest, and Merrill high schools all showcased their musical creativity.

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

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

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

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

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

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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.

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BOULDER JUNCTION - Lakes bring a lot of visitors here to the Northwoods, but they also bring scientists.

The UW Trout Lake Station in Boulder Junction just wrapped up its summer research season.

The UW Trout Lake Station is a research station for limnology students at UW Madison. It's mostly graduate students and faculty from Madison's Center for limnology.

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RHINELANDER - A Wisconsin brewing company executive wants businesses to hire more veterans.

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