THE NORTHWOODS - A week and a half ago, the Nordic Ski Championships were in jeapordy of being moved from the Northwoods Since then, tons of snow has fallen and today hundreds of students hit the trails.
This is the first time Rhinelander has hosted the event since 2007. It's the equivalent of the state tourneys held down in Madison.
For the hometown team,on the boys side, Lou Bassette finished in 39th with the best time for the Hodags. And for the girls, Hillary Wall skied her way into 20th place.
The team from Lakeland had a great day on the course. Freshman Mack Fitzpatrick took fifth place and Will Bo-Davis, Michael Orlowski and Lucas Paulson all finished in the top 20.
For the ladies, Delaney FitzPatrick glided to a second place finish, Erin Bolger 8th and Sophia Annis 11th.
The skiers will be reseeded Sunday, based on today's finishes and race a freestyle pursuit for the state title.
To the mat... wrestling regionals were held today. Merrill hosted a division one group. The top 4 finishers in each weight class move on to sectionals.
In the championships, for the 160 class, Blue Jays Mason Reinhardt showed why he's ranked number one in the state. He got the sudden victory win over Jared Mataczynski.
Rhinelander's Conor Johnson won by decision 11-5 over Alex Klug in the 195.
And Merrill's Tyler Schmidt remains undefeated on the year after beating River Judd 7-1 for the 220 class.
Crandon held a D3 regional with the top 2 finishers moving on.
In the 126 class, Cardinals Hayden Krueger won by pin over Andrew Kelley in 1:05.
Laona/Wabeno's Robbie Rocole took the top spot for 138 pounds after pinning Kollin Champine in just 47 seconds.
In the 145, Hayden Krueger from Crandon got his 150th win today and beat Alec Smith by technical fall 16-0.
For the 160, Florence's Cole Dollar took a hard fought match 10-6 over Joey Johnson.
And for the big guys, Emerson Hegeman of Three Lakes got his 101st win and won by pin over Zack Timblin.
Find all the results including D2 on trackwrestling.com
Future Wisconsin Project wants to bring more workers, manufacturers to Wisconsin
RHINELANDER - The Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce group held a seminar at Nicolet College in Rhinelander Tuesday, to plan how to make Wisconsin more attractive to skilled workers and manufacturing businesses.
WMC's president believes the shortage in younger people in the industry has to do with two big misconceptions about manufacturing.
"The younger kids, as do their parents, have a perception on what manufacturing looks like and it's about 40 years out of date. If you're in an advanced manufacturing facility now, it's clean, it's high-tech, the engineers and technicians are working together," said Jim Morgan."We have a perception problem. I think we still have a definition of success that's says unless you have a four-year degree, you're not successful."
Morgan says groups like WMC work to change that perception. He believes workers with a two-year degree are just as successful in the industry.
So far, WMC held seminars at nine other technical colleges. For Rhinelander, more manufacturers could mean more economic independence.
"The Rhinelander Chamber of Commerce is looking to see how it can help and partner with local manufacturers to make the Rhinelander area a more favorable place for them to locate their businesses, as well as to attract and retain skilled workers to make those businesses successful," said Dana DeMet, Rhinelander Chamber of Commerce director.
Over the next six months, WMC will continue to look for ways to attract more workers and businesses to the state.
In December, it hopes to have 1000 representatives for a meeting in Milwaukee focusing on how manufacturing will benefit the state.
WMC also works with the University of Wisconsin system and the Wisconsin Technical Colleges.
MADISON - A bill that would allow Wisconsin schools to extend school days and shorten school years to save money is up for a vote in the Senate this week.
The bill would get rid of the requirement that schools teach for 180 days or lose state funding. Schools are still required to teach the same number of hours under the bill.
Another change under the law allows the state Department of Public Instruction to fund remedial courses and interim school sessions. The package is being viewed as a cost saving measure for districts that have seen state funding decrease in recent years.
Three Democrats joined the bill's Republican sponsors, and DPI and other education groups have voiced strong support for the proposal.
TOMAHAWK - The Tomahawk School District will need to make big budget cuts in the next year. The district will need to cut more than $500,000. Rising transportation costs along with declining enrollments challenge many Northwoods School Districts.
“We have a lot of issues in Northern Wisconsin that many districts in the state of Wisconsin don't have,” says Cheryl Baker, Tomahawk School District Superintendent. “For instance in the Tomahawk School District there's about 425 and I'm rounding that off, square miles of terrain that has to be covered everyday two times a day to pick kids up, to bring them to school, and to take them home.”
“That cost is our cost,” says Baker.
The school district does not plan to cut any electives. Instead they are moving from an 8 to a 7 period day.
“We're moving from an 8 period day to a 7 period day purely for economic reasons,” says Baker. “In other words had we not gone to the 7 period day for next year we would have had to of cut entire classes, electives, and or start cutting down teachers full time positions.”
The school district will also need to cut its full time social worker.
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