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Three Tomahawk friends help families in need for ChristmasSubmitted: 12/01/2013
Story By Shardaa Gray

Three Tomahawk friends help families in need for Christmas
TOMAHAWK - Friends normally get together and catch up during the holidays.

But three friends in Tomahawk wanted to do more.

They took on the challenge of making Christmas extra special for those in need.

"I like doing things for people because there's a lot of people that don't have anything. Some of us have more than other people. And I think it's a nice thing." said Tomahawk resident, Christine Mikles.

Tomahawk community members hope to make life a little easier for people struggling during the holiday season.

"I think it's a wonderful thing that this town does for the food pantry because there's so many people without anything," Mikles said.

"If we can help somebody, that's a wonderful thing. It's the perfect season to do it."

Patty Tholl, Roxanne Consolver and Sharon Novitski are the women who represent the Three Amigas.

They came up with an idea three years ago to help out the Tomahawk Food Pantry after Thanksgiving.

"We got together and we thought, let's have a benefit. Patty here owns the Rodeo, so we have a place," said one of the Three Amigas, Roxanne Consolver.

"All the trees are decorated on the deck so what an awesome background and backdrop. Then the three of us just decided, well, let's have a raffle. Let's see if we can get a few donations."

They got more than a few donations.

They raised $1,600 in cash, food and toys for food pantry participants last year.

"I know that they are very very busy at the food pantry this time of the year. With lay-offs and now the new insurance rules and that type of thing, people are finding a little bit more hardship this year than in previous years," Consolver said.

"So we're hoping that whatever we do here will lessen that hardship and everyone can have a really Merry Christmas."

And to be sure people have a Merry Christmas; they're giving each family a tree.

That's thanks to the North Country Riders and community members.

"What they do basically is they donate all the trees. We print up a coupon. Everybody pretty much adopts a tree. Then the coupons are delivered to the food pantry," Tomahawk Food Pantry full-time volunteer, Amber Anderson said.

"Throughout this month families that need at tree will be given a coupon. They can come here and pick any of the trees they want." Anderson said.

"We all need help. There isn't one amongst us that doesn't need help. We live in a very unique community in that respect. People here like to help each other." said Anderson.

Saturday wasn't the only time to give back.

You can drop off toys or donations at the Rodeo Saloon in Tomahawk anytime this month.

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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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RHINELANDER - Rhinelander's police chief hoped to fill two jobs in his department last summer.  A field of eight finalists led to zero job offers, but this week Lloyd Gauthier's force might finally get back to full strength.

The Rhinelander Police and Fire Commission approved hiring Tyler and Logan Pontbriand on Monday.  Their hires would bring the total force in Rhinelander to 17, including the chief and captain positions.

The Pontbriand twins are deputies with the Vilas County Sheriff's Office.  Logan started as a corrections officer in May 2015 while Tyler was hired as a deputy in January 2016.

Gauthier says they had six qualified applicants after reopening the application process in November, but the Pontbriands - who both live in Rhinelander - had qualities you simply can't teach.

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RHINELANDER - Rhinelander middle school students could experience a new class schedule this fall.

School administrators have worked for a year and half to change the 20-year-old master schedule.

James Williams Middle School Principal Richard Gretzinger says the main focus of a new schedule is to give students a 30 minute free or "enrichment" period.

"Sometimes students get caught up in getting to go to one class to the other to the other. If we can break up that day for those students and give them some movement, brain breaks and activities… Studies have shown that they will be effective through the day," said Gretzinger.

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EAGLE RIVER - Colder temps and windy weather delayed work on the Vilas County Courthouse expansion this winter.

The $11 million project is scheduled to be finished at the end of February. The only portion of the building still being worked on is the connector between the new building and the existing courthouse. 

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CRANDON - A new local owner could reopen Crandon's shuttered nursing home facility.

Peg and Jim Houle officially bought the former AGI Healthcare facility, which announced its closing last April. All 37 residents were moved by May.

The Houles replace Milwaukee-area lawyer Robert Roth, who shut down the nursing home when it was no longer profitable.

The Forest County Economic Development Partnership helped coordinate the sale to the Houles.

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RHINELANDER - A Three Lakes man accused of sexually assaulting two children pleaded not guilty in court on Wednesday. 
 
David Teresinski, 69, is accused of sexually assaulting a child over the course of five years. 

In December, details about another child Teresinski allegedly assaulted came forward. 

Wednesday in Oneida County Court, Teresinski waived his right to hear evidence against him.
Teresinki is out on a $25,000 cash bond. 

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RHINELANDER - Local veterinarian, Dr. Alison French, actually sees a decrease in vet visits in the winter months due to less outdoor exercise and fewer injuries. But less time outside with pets is not necessarily a good thing.

French recommends you give your pets plenty of water and take walks outside even in the coldest temperatures.

Just like humans, animals dehydrate faster in the cold. Make sure you refill your pet's water bowls.

"Make sure they have fresh water. So if they're outside all the time make sure they have a heated water dish," said French.

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