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Northwoods Spotlight - Hodag mountain biker Oct 16Submitted: 10/16/2013
Story By Marisa Silvas

RHINELANDER - Cross country and mountain biking. Not exactly two sports you would pair together.

But a Rhinelander junior has done just that.

And he's earned high marks in both.

Rhinelander's Issac Wendt knows all about speed, endurance and power... in fact, he recently won the first ever WI Interscholastic State Championship in mountain biking.


SOT - Issac Wendt "I went and I just rode and had fun with it," Wendt says. "Seeing what it was like when I got there, I realized that the course was fitting my style."

More than 60 racers representing schools across the state competed. Wendt won the varsity boys division with a time of one hour and 21 minutes for the 20 mile course.

Issac had a simple approach to the race.

"I went out and got a good lead and I knew I was in first place and just kept trying to put more time on the next guys. It's cool when you know you're in first and everyone's looking at you."

The junior also plays basketball and runs cross country. His coaches say the sports compliment each other.

"Cross training is a great thing to do for runners," Issac's cross country coach M.J. Laggis adds. "You can see the definition on his legs and the biking is helping his running big time."

While Issac was thrilled to win the first state race, he hopes it's just the beginning and that the sport gains more popularity.

"I hope it catches on with the high school crowd and people get into it and everyone wants to ride together," Wendt explains.


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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 01/17/2018

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

Last spring a nursing home in Crandon closed down. Now the facility is expected to open up again thanks to a new local owner. You'll hear from the Forest County Economic Development director on what that means for the area.

We'll show you the progress of the Vilas County Courthouse expansion project and tell you when it's expected to be finished.

And we'll tell you about a new schedule for students at the Rhinelander middle school and talk to school officials about the reason for the changes.

We'll bring you the details on these stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

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MILWAUKEE - A historically red district in Wisconsin that voted overwhelmingly for President Donald Trump in 2016 has voted in a Democrat in a special election.

Patty Schachtner beat GOP state Representative Adam Jarchow to become the first Democrat to represent the 10th Senate District in at least 16 years.

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RHINELANDER - Stocking your cabinet with vitamins and supplements can take a toll on your wallet, but doing so can keep you healthy.

There are five fundamental supplements you can take to get your health on track.

That includes a multivitamin, a probiotic, vitamin D, omega 3, and fruits and greens.

Our Northwoods climate can leave many people lacking Vitamin D in particular.

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MILWAUKEE - The first case of chronic wasting disease has been found in Milwaukee County.

The Department of Natural Resources says the disease was found in a four year old deer in West Allis.

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VILAS COUNTY - All but 11 counties in Wisconsin filed a lawsuit against pharmaceutical companies for contributing to the opioid crisis.

The lawsuit says certain companies use "deceptive marking" and have "created a false perception of the safety of opioids."

Vilas County is one of the 11 that hasn't joined yet. 

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MERRILL - Pastor James Weiland of Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church remains in critical condition after a crash with a semi-truck on Friday afternoon, near Rhinelander.

After the crash, medics took Pastor Weiland in an ambulance and later flew him to Aspirus Hospital in Wausau, where he is now.

The Pastor's truck and the semi crashed a few miles west of Rhinelander on Highway 8. The semi-truck driver wasn't injured.

Weiland has lead the congregation at Christ Evangelical for more than 20 years and is a large part of the entire Northwoods community. 

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RHINELANDER - Three years ago Petco bought Doctors Foster and Smith in Rhinelander with the intention of keeping all local jobs in place. But Tuesday, the company announced it would lay off 55 people. 

Those employees worked in marketing, merchandising, and ecommerce support. Petco issued a statement saying the positions will go to the National Support Center in San Diego. 

Now, dozens of people at one of Rhinelander's largest employers are out of a job.

Petco purchased Doctors Foster and Smith back in February of 2015. 

Petco will still employ more than 450 people in Rhinelander in the pharmacy, customer care, and Live Aquaria businesses as well as the distribution center and retail store. 

Petco said the change came because they want to expand "key operational areas" in Rhinelander.
Laid off employees found out Tuesday. 

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