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.
EAGLE RIVER - These unseasonably warm temps can make it hard for snowmobilers to enjoy the trails. The Wisconsin Snow Report says snowmobile trails in Eagle River are overall in poor condition.
On many of the trails, you'll see more gravel and dirt than actual snow.
"You don't know if the season comes to an end at this point because you never know when Mother Nature will throw a twist at things and give you a 20 inch snowstorm because that can happen. You know, the big lake is still open up north and if the winds come down that way, we could see a lot of Lake Affect snow yet," said Eagle River Sno Eagles Trail Boss Brian Scheid.
STEVENS POINT - A former Portage County doctor could go to prison for sexually assaulting his patients. Wilton Calderon pled guilty to three felonies Friday.
Calderon was a caregiver at the Plover Family Practice until leaving it in 2015. He then moved to Connecticut.
At least seven women accused Calderon of sexually assaulted them during appointments. Some patients said Calderon placed his genitals in their hands and performed unwanted gynecological exams by penetrating them with his fingers.
SUGAR CAMP - Update Feb. 17, 2017 10:20 p.m. -- The woman who runs an Oneida County animal rescue could face animal mistreatment charges.
Oneida County Deputies booked Stephanie Schneider on Thursday. She is due in court on Feb. 27.
Last week, deputies removed 39 dogs from Schneider's "It Matters to One" in Sugar Camp and put them at the Oneida County Humane Society.
Police are recommending charges to the district attorney, which include failing to provide food and water, mistreating animals, and obstructing officers.
People who know Schneider say they can't believe this is happening.
"I'm just heartsick about this, and I'm sick at heart for her," said LynnAnn Thomas, a Sugar Camp resident who says she's friends with Stephanie Schneider.
"Those are her children. She would never, ever , ever mistreat them," Thomas said.
But that's exactly what police believe Schneider did. Last week they removed the dogs from the facility after a weeks-long investigation that was prompted by complaints and concerns from several people.
"People that had worked or volunteered there were concerned about the conditions that the dogs were in and the fact that they were not receiving food or water," said Oneida County Sheriff's Capt. Terri Hook.
Those accusations baffle Thomas.
"I been over there several times, it's always been meticulously clean, happy dogs," Thomas said.
Thomas believes whatever condition the dogs were in, they came to Schneider that way.
"She does get some really, really, really desperate cases, and I imagine that they take a long time to heal," Thomas said.
Thomas added she got her own dog from It Matters To One a few years ago.
"I got my little Hankey, he came in in really bad shape, and she wouldn't let me have him until he was nursed back to health," Thomas said.
Since the dogs were removed, It Matters to One posted certificates of veterinary inspections on its Facebook page for most of the 39 dogs. The Sheriff's Office has seen those and is including them in its investigation, which is ongoing and may not end soon.
"Just to ensure that all the dogs are healed and make sure they've received all the care they need," Hook said.
Newswatch 12 has reached out to It Matters to One and has been communicating with the rescue via email.
The state Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection is helping the sheriff's office with its investigation and will decide if the rescue can keep its license.
Newswatch 12 also reached out to the veterinarian who conducted the inspections for the rescue, but has not yet heard back.
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