TOMAHAWK - Runners take off in Tomahawk, with a little something extra- snowshoes.
“Racing snowshoes are a little smaller than the ones you and I would typically wear. Like I say they’ll just have their normal running gear on with just a little bit wider shoes on,” said volunteer Fred Bloedorn. These runners are participating in the 2nd annual “Treehaven Tromp” Showshoe Race.
It brings almost 100 snowshoers to the 14 hundred acre Treehaven facility.
“It is a fun race for some people, but it’s also a qualifying race for the USSA, United States Snowshoe Association, for the national championships,” said Bloedorn.
Among those looking for a fun race, is Jim Mcdonell.
He’s been racing since the 90’s and says his attire is inspired by a trip to Scotland and the movie, “Braveheart”.
“I got enthused with it and I thought I’d start with wearing the blue and white face after seeing the movie Braveheart, and then a few years after wearing the blue and white face I started wearing the kilt. And it just makes winter fun,” said Mcdonell.
And even though it’s about 20 degrees out- Jim says he’s not cold.
“I have a hot body, I burn hot, so that’s one reason. I used to run in shorts and a shirt before the kilt. But you really get hot when you’re out there. But it’s fun. You’re only out there for an hour so you’re not going to freeze,” said Mcdonell.
He has some advice for those who might not think snowshoeing is for them. ”Just remember that there’s 7 days in a week, and one of them is not someday. So get out there and do it,” said Mcdonell.
Proceeds from the 5 and 10 k races went to support Treehaven Youth Programs.
Treehaven is a Northwoods campus for the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point.
MADISON - An aide to a Wisconsin lawmaker says Gov. Scott Walker intends to sign a bill that would put outside agencies in charge of investigating officer-involved deaths.
Craig Trost, an aide to Rep. Chris Taylor, says in an email that Walker's office notified Taylor's office that he plans to sign the bill Wednesday.
Taylor, a Madison Democrat, and Rep. Garey Bies, R-Sister Bay, developed the legislation in response to three high-profile deaths in the last 10 years. None of those incidents resulted in criminal charges.
Supporters say the new requirements will counter claims that police protect their own from consequences of using deadly force. But police observers say the bill could create conflict and confusion for Wisconsin agencies that have traditionally done the investigations themselves.
The bill passed the Legislature earlier this year.
LAC DU FLAMBEAU - People from all over the Northwoods celebrated Earth Day today. Students at Lac du Flambeau school participated in a natural resources fair today.
Classes, groups and individual students submitted projects to be judged. By doing the projects they learned the importance of Earth Day.
“Polluting could harm the earth and if that harms the earth later on we won't have a better earth to do stuff on like camping, or fishing, hiking and taking walks,” says Sky Risingsun, a Lac du Flambeau student.
35 projects were judged in the science competition. Each student was given a white spruce seed to take home and plant in their own yard.
“It's a white spruce which is a native tree to this area,” says Bryan Hoover, Lac du Flambeau Energy and Air Quality Coordinator. “We've got almost 500 of them and every student is going to take one home so that they can pick a spot in their yard to plant the new tree and watch that tree grow as it matures.”
NORTHWOODS - People in Wisconsin love their beer, but alcohol is a big problem in the Northwoods. Experts want people to remember that alcohol is a drug and should never be abused.
Alcohol is a depressant and slows down the central nervous system. Experts feel drinking here in the Northwoods has become too normalized.
“When you talk to people even from the Northwoods community alcohol goes hand in hand with family gatherings , graduation, prom, hunting, snowmobiling, recreational activities,” says Katie Kennedy, Options Counseling Service Clinician. “It's kind of created this normalized look at alcohol that it's okay to do that in these environments or in these situations when it actually really increases risks.”
It's not just adults that have alcohol problems. Kids under 21 are finding unique ways to abuse the drug. Some have even resorted to snorting alcohol as a means to get drunk faster.
“What happens anytime you ingest a substance as far as snorting like right into your nose it goes into your mucus membrane,” says Kennedy. “So instead of drinking alcohol whereas it's processed through your system it's a process, the alcohol goes immediately into your body into your blood stream it affects you a lot quicker.”
In 2012 Wisconsin was the number one state for binge drinking. That's according to the Center for Disease Control. April is alcohol awareness month.
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