Food pantry gets traffic management helpSubmitted: 03/18/2014

Karolina Buczek

RHINELANDER - More than 29 thousand pounds of food will be distributed tonight at Grace Foursquare Church in Rhinelander.

Ruby's Pantry organizers want to make traffic runs smoothly.

The Oneida County Sheriff's department and the Highway department will help Ruby's Pantry to make sure Highway 17 is clear.

Last time Ruby's Pantry came to Rhinelander, traffic was backed up past Menards.

"The DOT put up a big sign out there by Menards saying Slow Traffic Ahead and things like that. We reconfigured how you can get into the parking lot so things are working much smoother tonight," said John Roe, of Ruby's Pantry.

Shuttle buses will be going to the Church from Menards to avoid too many cars from going through the parking lot.

With this new traffic management plan, Ruby's Pantry organizers expect a successful turnout.

"We packed our truck in Waupaca with 29,333 pounds of food and we are expecting 400 families to come through our lines today," said Roe.

Ruby's Pantry doesn't care if people have used another pantry or aren't considered low income.

Food distribution will go until 7 p.m. tonight.

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LAKE TOMAHAWK - In the back room of Todd Ahrensdorf's butcher shop this week, you'll find him steadily cleaning deer.  The Lake Tomahawk butcher has steady, but not overwhelming, business.

"Got enough work to keep us busy," Ahrensdorf said.

For nearly three decades, Ahrensdorf has ridden the wave every gun-deer season, processing anywhere from about 75 deer this year up to 500 in years past.

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Bergman Family Tree Farm closesSubmitted: 11/30/2015

RHINELANDER - Normally at this time of year, families would be making their way through the Bergman Family Tree Farm to pick out that perfect Christmas tree.

"People like to come and take their kids out there on sleds. We have sleds that they can use. A lot of them like that. Yeah, they'd come out here even in the rain. We'd always have candy canes," said owner Peter Bergman.

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RHINELANDER - Rhinelander voters will decide in February whether to give the school more money.

The School District of Rhinelander will try to pass a referendum.

It would cost about $5 million each year for the next three years.

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MADISON - Republican lawmakers are circulating a bill that would scale back the water bodies that could be designated special natural areas.

Currently, the Department of Natural Resources' board can designate a number of water bodies as areas of special natural resource interest where construction projects require permits. The types of water bodies include trout streams; surface waters identified as an outstanding or exceptional resource water; waters that contain endangered or threatened species; wild rice waters; wild or scenic rivers; and ecologically significant coastal wetlands.

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PARK FALLS - Many people in the Northwoods go to church on Sunday mornings, and some of them may do so begrudgingly.

But there are plenty of faithful people, often the elderly or the sick, who want to go to church but have a hard time doing so.

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MERRILL - Merrill hopes that having snowmobiles zipping through town this winter will provide an economic boost for the city. 

This year, the city council approved ATV, UTV, and snowmobile routes in town Those vehicles will share city streets with cars in many areas.

Allowing people to use those alternate modes of transportation could convince more winter tourists to stop in Merrill instead of traveling somewhere farther north to shop.

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WAUSAU - The 400 Block in Wausau looks a little more like Christmas today. City workers put up a Christmas tree on one of the corners downtown.

The tree came from a different part of the city, near Third Avenue and Spruce Street. Garlands already decorate many lampposts in downtown Wausau.

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