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Northwoods Spotlight - Snowmobile Derby recap Jan 22Submitted: 01/23/2014
Story By Marisa Silvas

Northwoods Spotlight - Snowmobile Derby recap Jan 22
EAGLE RIVER - Tomahawk's Nick Van Strydonk won the world championship in 2012. He knows
competing at Eagle River Derby Track is special.

"You can't put it into words, Van Strydonk said. "It's its own special feeling.
We do it for the fans. We're not out here to make money. We're not out here to
prove anything to the guys we race against. We're out here for the fans, we
like to put on a show and have fun."

Lance Rutledge is an amatuer sno cross racer from Rhinelander.

"The adrenaline rush you get, especially in that last lap, it all comes into
play," Rutledge adds.


Speed, adversity and triumph, Derby Weekend had it all - including talented
local drivers.

It wasn't just the guys tearing it up. 17 year old Sabrina Blanchet from Quebec
set out to become the first female to qualify for the final race, but she had a
tough weekend.

"It's disappointing but I'm not mad or upset," Blanchet explains. "The team
does a lot of work to give me the best machine they can. We'll come back and
try to do it all over again."

Another tradition that dates back to the early years is the Derby Queen.
Northland Pines hockey star Jessica Roach won that honor for 2014.

"It's definitely awesome being part of the derby," Roach said. "We're a big
hockey town but the Derby is what people look forward to in the winter."

The sleds that race out here aren't like anything you'd see on a trail. They're
hand built from the ground up and hits speeds up to 100 miles per hour on the track.

In the end, it was Malcolm Chartier winning the granddaddy of them all and
becoming a back to back champ.

"We did our homework," Chartier said. "We did it last year and tried to
replicate what we did last year and did it again."

"To be able to live in a little town like Eagle River and have a business
because there's not that much other tourism it's just very gratifying," derby
track marketing manager Richard Decker points out. "It's a lot of hard work but
believe me, everything is worth it. We love it."


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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 05/24/2017

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

We'll tell you why an Oneida County Supervisor wants the county to defy state law and do what's best for the county in regard to shore land zoning.

The principal of Nativity of our Lord Catholic School in Rhinelander was let go just before the school year ended. We'll bring you both sides of the story.

And we'll show you how AM Vets and Phillips Elementary School are trying to get kids hooked on fishing instead of drugs.

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

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PHILLIPS - Kids see plenty of pressure these days and that pressure can cause kids to turn to drugs.

However, the AM Vets POST 50 teamed up with Phillips Elementary fourth grade students to give kids a different type of stress relief.

Chloe Borchert was one of nearly 70 students who skipped school to fish on Solberg Lake Wednesday to enjoy the Hooked on Fishing Not on Drugs program.

"I hope to catch a lot of blue gills and croppies," said Chloe.

AM Vets Commander Douglas Rasmussen says this is the 10th year the AM Vets teamed up with the school. Every year the AM Vets purchase 100 fishing rods to give out to the Price County fourth grade students.

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MERRILL - Normally, we learn how to ride bikes. But what if a bike could help us learn in other ways?

A bike on display at the T.B. Scott Free Library in Merrill will help kids learn about solar energy. Pedal Power will be showcased as part of the Summer Library Program starting Thursday until June 12.

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MADISON - Gov. Scott Walker has signed a bill that makes clear that unaccompanied minors can attend music festivals where alcohol is being served.

Walker signed the bill Wednesday. He says it makes sense to allow the exemption, which also exists for hotels, grocery stores, bowling alleys, movie theaters, and sports stadiums.

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CRANDON - The final person living at Crandon's only nursing home left last week.

Last month, AGI Healthcare announced it was closing, forcing 37 residents to find new homes and forcing 60 workers to find new jobs.

By state law, nursing homes can't close until all people have a new home.

Forest County's Economic Development office said it was unsuccessful in finding a buyer for the home.

The nursing home's owner told us in April it wasn't making enough money to stay afloat.

Many people living in Crandon moved to Nu Roc nursing home in Blackwell.

Click below for the original story on the nursing home closing.

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RHINELANDER - An Oneida County committee will wait at least one more week before deciding whether a new Minocqua hospital can go forward.

The county's Planning and Development committee didn't vote on the issue at a meeting on Wednesday. Committee members want more time to review hundreds of documents submitted on the question.

Marshfield Clinic wants to build a 12-bed hospital in Minocqua. That hospital would be less than a mile from Howard Young Hospital in Woodruff.

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TOMAHAWK - Tomahawk High School seniors will say goodbye to their school in a couple of weeks. But not before they leave something behind.

A special group of students was selected to participate in the art show. Madison Krueger-Brown, Katie Vannatter, Hayley Strong and Ciarra Clifford have been committed to the arts during their high school careers.

 On Wednesday they got a chance to showcase their work.

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