Northwoods Spotlight - Holiday memories Dec 25Submitted: 12/25/2013
Story By Joe Dufek

- Virtually no sports happening in the Northwoods until at least Thursday.

Many athletes including the Packers enjoyed Christmas with family and friends. Several shared some of their favorites holiday memories and traditions.

"I have two favorite Christmas presents," Joe Piskula - a member of the Nashville Predators organization and an Antigo native explains. "One was a snowmobile. The other was when we got a chocolate lab with my siblings. That was probably the best."

Elcho girls basketball star Makayla Raith was seven years old when she received her favorite gift.

"It was an American Girl doll. It had blonde hair, kinda looked like me at the time. Her name was Kaylee."

Packers wide receiver James Jones' favorite tradition is "on Christmas Eve, we all get to open one present."

Nicholas Cirese of the Phelps boys basketball team enjoys, "watching "Home Alone" alot. That movie is pretty funny. Just the two guys trying to chase the kid - I think they're the two funniest characters."

For some folks, it's a chance to get together with family who is several miles away.

Lakeland boys swimming star Nick Garcia's family is making a trip.

"We like to go down to Milwaukee and visit with my brother. We don't get to see him as much as I like."

"My family lives far away," adds Jackie Samuelson of the Phelps girls basketball team. "So my favorite thing is going to see them. It's so happy and fun. I just love it."

Packers fullback John Kuhn is looking forward to, "probably getting to open one gift on Christmas Eve, I think that's neat."

Justin Berg is a pitcher with the Colorado Rockies organization and an Antigo native.

"Being a baseball player, as crazy as it sounds, my favorite gift was a snowmobile. Either that or when my dad built a hockey rink in the back yard. My family all loves to play hockey too. That and a snowmobile."

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WISCONSIN - This year marks the third highest bear harvest in state history.

The totals cement Wisconsin's title as the best state in the U.S. for bear harvests with 4,643 registered.

But it wasn't all good news for bear hunters. 

This year also marked the highest number of hunting dog deaths.

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WAUSAU - This fall Wausau's Woodson Art Museum will bring together artists from all over the world. 

The Birds in Art exhibit gives artists an opportunity to share a piece of themselves with their audience.

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EAGLE RIVER - Many of us already put out the scary decorations and pumpkins for some Halloween spirit. But if you're looking to take it up a notch, dress like a zombie and grab your running shoes this Saturday.

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MINOCQUA - The Minocqua Town Board always knew it would need to replace Supervisor Bryan Jennings eventually. But the Board didn't think it happen so soon.

Jennings died September 8, two days after he was struck by lightning while walking his dog.

Town Chairman Mark Hartzheim says the Town is now accepting letters of interest from anyone wanting to fill Jennings's seat.

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MERRILL - The Merrill Fire Department sees the need for more, younger EMTs to get into the business. Like other area departments, it wants to ensure its staff will stay strong for years into the future.

People like Dylan Schielke can help make that happen.

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What We're Working OnSubmitted: 10/24/2016

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

We'll update you on the details of a fatal car crash in the Town of Stella that took the life of a teenager late Saturday night.

This year marks the third highest bear harvest in state history. But it also marked the highest number of hunting dog deaths. No one knows for sure why, but we'll tell you about some possible reasons.

And the Elcho-White Lake High School football team agreed to play an 8-man football game against a nearby high school's team. We'll tell you how it's helping out the nearby team.

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 - Authorities say three women from Chicago were killed when a vehicle ran a red light and slammed their Uber ride in Milwaukee.

The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner's Office released a statement Monday identifying the victims as 32-year-old Amy Taylor, 30-year-old Ashley Sawatzke and 35-year-old Lindsey Cohen. Autopsies are expected Monday.

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