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Northwood Golf Club trying to climb back into the blackSubmitted: 10/30/2013

Adam Fox
10 p.m. Anchor/Reporter
afox@wjfw.com

RHINELANDER - A Rhinelander golf course that has struggled to stay profitable believes a late winter hurt their bottom line.

Northwood Golf Course Superintendent Joe Andersen says the course opened six weeks later than usual because of the lingering winter. According to public documents, the course is projected to finish with a $27,594 deficit.

"I would guess that we started off the day we opened probably between $80,000 to $100,000 dollars down from last year to that same date," Andersen said.

The City of Rhinelander has been helping out with loans from the city's general fund since the early 2000s. The course has cut its budget from $694,000 in 2010 to a projected $498,487 for 2014.

They're also trying to attract more golfers.

"The big thing in my opinion is the lack of people having free money to spend on leisure activities," Andersen said. "When times are tough, people cut their luxuries first, and golf is a luxury."

The course will have to repay the City of Rhinelander nearly $900,000.



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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 07/28/2016

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ANTIGO - When you can't catch fish, it's easy to blame the lure. If you need something different, people in Antigo make a lure that you might want to try. The Mepp's assembly plant is located right off Highway 45.

Mepp's fishing lures were originally made in Paris, France, starting in 1938. Back in the 1970's, a local Antigo sporting goods store owner, Todd Sheldon, decided to buy that facility and moved it to Nice, France. His son, Mike is now the president of the company.

"The guys that own the Mepp's company in France were getting old enough to where they wanted to retire so we bought the Mepp's company in France in 1972," said Sheldon.

One detail that makes the lure number one in the world is that they use actual animal tail fur.

"The tails are washed, dyed and tied back there," said plant worker Kim Wiegert. "And they're dehydrated. They will store a long time, so they can last 3 to 5 years."

There are many benefits to using real hair as opposed to artificial hair.

"The hair is hollow and goes through a lot of wear and tear," said Wiegert. "Other hairs would disintegrate, and fall apart. With these, it'll last longer, the fish can bite on them and it'll take a long time before they'll actually chew them apart."

Along with the hairs, there is a secret way to put the lures together that makes Mepp's the best.

"We have a certain wind that we have and we can tell when we put them together, how it should be. All of our spinners are field tested before they actually go out," said Wiegert.

Even though the company distributes their product around the world, the Sheldon's still enjoy being based in Antigo.

"It's home. I grew up here and my parents grew up here and of course my kids did. And it's such a different pace of life here than the rest of the world," said Sheldon.

Everyone putting the little pieces together are women. Kim is just one who works in the plant that has been there for nearly 40 years. She also gives tours of the facility to the public.

"I like to react with the people when they come in, especially ones that have fishing stories to tell you. It's interesting here and you get to meet other people," said Wiegert.

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Researchers at the UW-Madison Trout Lake Station in Boulder Junction want to know more about that dynamic.

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