Wisc. libraries to get broadband boost Submitted: 02/10/2014
Story By Adam Fox

THREE LAKES - You could soon get to your favorite websites faster in parts of Central and
Northern Wisconsin.

The state will use $4.2 million from the federal government to boost broadband
at libraries in Wisconsin.

That includes the Demmer Memorial Library in Three Lakes. Demmer Memorial
Library Director Janet Dixon says the upgrade will make their internet three
times faster for the same price they pay now.

"Our patrons are doing a lot of research on our computers now and sometimes
they're awfully slow and we would really like to have that consistent speed for
them," Dixon said.

More than 350 libraries across Wisconsin will get the internet speed boost.

Dixon says the fiber broadband will get their connection from 3mbps to 10mbps.
She believes the upgrade will help rural areas avoid falling behind in
technology and opportunity.

"I think the speed is important for them (patrons)," Dixon said. "So we want to
be able to provide that even though we're up here in the Northwoods, we want to
have good internet service."

Workers will start laying the broadband fiber lines in April. That means
libraries could get the broadband boost by November. State Superintendent Tony
Evers is excited for the project.

"More than 60 percent of our public libraries report inadequate Internet
connection speeds to serve library patrons," Evers said in a press release.
"Many of our libraries are the only public Internet access in their small, rural
communities. Our libraries provide online education resources for students of
all ages including BadgerLink services for job seekers and information on
government services so this upgrade of Internet connectivity will be a welcome
improvement across the state."

Planning for the project started in 2013 and is a part of improving the state's
BadgerNet broadband connection.

Related Weblinks:
List of Libraries getting fiber broadband upgrade

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EAGLE RIVER - Many of us already put out the scary decorations and pumpkins for some Halloween spirit.

If you're looking to take it up a notch, dress like a zombie and grab your running shoes this Saturday.

The 2016 Zombie 5K Fun Run starts at 5 p.m. at Three Eagle Trail in Eagle River.

Zombie Fun Run is still in great need of runners.

Registration is $30 for a t-shirt and a spot as either a runner or a zombie.

Run times don't matter for this race; it is just a race for the fun.

Runners will be given flags attached to a belt to wear throughout the race.

Zombies will then hide on the trail and run after the runners to steal their flags.

Runners with flags left at the end of the race are the winners.

"It's something different. Nothing you know that is normal," said Hallow Fest co-chair Susie Erikson.

You must be over 13-years-old to participate.

Feel free to come in full costume and make-up for the race.

Registration begins at 4 p.m. on Saturday after Hallow Fest.

You can register up until 15 minutes before the race starts on Saturday.

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RHINELANDER - With a little over two weeks before the presidential election, local officials continue to campaign for their pick for President of the United States.

Wisconsin's former Lieutenant Governor Barbara Lawton visited Rhinelander Saturday to show her support for Hillary Clinton.

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WAUSAU - Enthusiasm, excitement and surprises continue to pack the 2016 election season.

 Republican politicians in Wisconsin still have something to add to this election.  

On Sunday Governor Scott Walker, Senator Ron Johnson and Representative Sean Duffy all stopped by the Wisconsin GOP office. 

They came together to encourage voters to get out and vote early. 

About 30 people came out to hear what the politicians had to say.

"We need to convince people who maybe we don't know where their opinions are in terms of election," said Governor Walker.

 "But we work with them, we live next to them, we go to church with them those are the people we need to reach out [to]."

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MINOCQUA - Every year thousands of kids go hungry. 

On Saturday nearly 600 volunteers from the Northwoods decided to help feed some of those children. 

The "Food for Kidz" organization, invited people to Lakeland Union High School, to help package non- perishable goods.

 The packages will be donated worldwide and to nearby food pantries.

Within the past eight years volunteers have packaged one million meals.

 Last year was the first year the organization started donating to local food pantries. 

This year volunteers will give 30,000 meals to the Northwoods community.

"It's just the recurring exuberance of the people that come in and do the packing we have many, repeat people that come year after year," said "Food for Kidz" Co-chairman John Breiten. 

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BOULDER JUNCTION - Nearby Fire Departments often rely on each other when they need extra man power. 

On Saturday firefighters from around the Northwoods came together as one. 
"It's vital to have that community bond between the fire departments," said Arbor Vitae Fire and Rescue Chief Mike VanMeter.

The bond between local departments led to a rare training opportunity. 

"Being able to share an opportunity like this is vital," said Boulder Junction Fire Department Chief Matthew Reuss. 

A donated house in Boulder Junction was lit on fire so that the fire departments could practice structure training.  

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RHINELANDER - We all have Tylenol and other medicines in our cabinets at home, but what do you do with them when they expire?

Saturday, local officials helped people properly dispose of those unwanted medicines as part of Wisconsin's Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

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WAUSAU - Scott Walker faced a tough crowd at times in Iowa during his failed presidential bid. Now, an undercover video released this week may show those protesters were planted on purpose.

The Journal Sentinel reported the videos show activist Scott Foval bragging about disrupting a Walker rally in Iowa. Those videos were released by conservative activist James O'Keefe.

Foval talks about bringing people out of state into Wisconsin, but doesn't give a reason why.

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