EAGLE RIVER - Last weekend was the first of two world championship snowmobile races in Eagle River. Racers took us back in time, hopping on sleds at least a quarter-century old.
The Vintage Snowmobile Championships showed drivers racing on sleds which were made before 1985. Several Northwoods racers took the checkered flag on the final day of action. Including Jeff Stoxen of Rhinelander - winning in the 440 Sport Mod. Racing these old machines is a thrill.
"It's been getting bigger, and bigger," says Jeff Stoxen of Rhinelander - one of the vintage racers. "Everybody is one big family for vintage. Everyone helps everybody out."
A record 7,000 fans watched the Vintage races here at Eagle River Derby Track. Over 20,000 are expected for this weekend's World Championship Derby.
Derby track owner Chuck Decker adds, "the big news is the $60,000 prize to the World Champion this year. Just the one class alone is going to pay out $90,000."
Last year's defending champion Nick Van Strydonk will return to defend his crown. The Tomahawk racer is excited to be racing with the event celebrating it's 50th year.
Several past champions will be honored on Friday night. Time trials get underway Thursday. The World Championship is set for 3pm Sunday afternoon.
EAGLE RIVER - A lot of things need to go right to build a 40,000 square foot addition in just one year. Workers in Vilas County used a fairly mild winter to their advantage to work toward that goal.
Construction on the county courthouse's addition is both on budget and essentially on time. Crews have the drywall up on the second floor and are working to do the same on the first floor soon. Vilas County Clerk Dave Alleman says a rainy spring held some masonry work up, but it's nothing crews can't handle to stay on track.
"Very well disciplined," Alleman said of the workers. "They're working every day, things are being done on time. I think overall that makes for a good project."
- A Nicolet College club provides a safe space for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students and allies to socialize and discuss personal issues related to gender and sexual orientation.
However, outside of the campus, there is no supportive group in the Northwoods. Now, the Rainbow Hodags Club is helping to get a community LGBT group started. Club member Don Schindhelm says he wishes a club like this existed years ago.
"I really felt like I didn't know anyone else who was gay or lesbian. It was frowned upon, so I suppressed it for most of my life. That's why I struggled with it for so many years," said Schindhelm.
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