Northwoods Spotlight: Lumberjack GamesSubmitted: 03/06/2013
Story By Marisa Silvas

EAGLE RIVER - Last weekend in Eagle River, you could hear some very distinctive sounds. The roar of the chainsaw. the crack of the ax. Marisa Silvas heads to the forest to find out why the chips were flying.

The logging industry has a rich history in Northern Wisconsin, and many events that began in these forests were on display last weekend.

Patrick Grove the UW-Stevens Point Timbersports Co-Cordinator says, "It just brings you back to a simpler time."

"We have chopping, so we have very sharp axes and saws. And it's just a great time," adds UWSP junior Allison Johnson.

"We really enjoy Klondike Days. It's in our backyard and it's a wonderful kickoff to the season," says Nancy Zalewski, a World Record Holder.

Axe throwing, sawing, and chopping. Just a few of the skills featured at the 23rd Anniversary of the Great Northern Lumberjack competition in Eagle River.

The event is the only winter contest of its kind in the country. Competitors came from Colorado- even West Virginia. One group didn't have to travel far - the team from UW Stevens Point.

Timber sports are all about timing and accuracy. But it also helps to have top of the line equipment.

The world record for one woman in single buck is 11 seconds. It took Alison and me 43.

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NEKOOSA - People in Nekoosa could go back in time this weekend.

Volunteers at Pointe Basse recreated a historical camp portraying lives of people from the 1700s and early 1800s.

Volunteers from all across the U.S. all had a piece of history to share.

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EAGLE RIVER - Eagle River hosted its 36th annual Cranberry Fest during October's first weekend.

Organizers say the weather this year brought in many more visitors.

"People come to this whether there's good weather of bad weather," said Executive Director of the Eagle River Chamber Kim Emerson. "And with this year being great weather, we had above-average crowds and it was just spectacular. We're so happy about that."

By 3 p.m. Saturday, the World's Largest Cranberry Cheesecake had already been devoured. Sales of slices go towards the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Wisconsin. 

Organizers said they also almost sold out of cranberries, but they said they would still have more to sell on Sunday. 

There were also dozens of craft vendors, food and wine and cranberry marsh tours.

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RHINELANDER - Harvest Hoedown started Saturday at noon at the Woodpecker Bar and Grill in Rhinelander.

The event had a hay maze, horse drawn carriage rides, food, and live music all afternoon.

"I think it's going great. We got a little sunshine right now. We got probably a couple hundred people here. People are buying food, spending money. It's what we're after," said Rhinelander Area Food Pantry Executive Director Guy Hanson.

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WOOD COUNTY - Two people who stole a UTV led police on a wild chase early Friday morning. Friday night, those suspects were still on the run.

The Wood County Sheriff's Office tells us a sporting goods store owner walked in as the burglary was happening, just before 7 a.m. The suspects took off in a red Dodge pickup truck pulling a trailer with the stolen UTV. They crashed through several gates to get out.

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MERRILL - One Northwoods farm wants to give all families the full Fall experience.

Grampa's Farm in Merrill has been a popular fall destination in Wisconsin since 2010.

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RHINELANDER - A Wisconsin brewing company executive wants businesses to hire more veterans.

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ACROSS WISCONSIN - Abbotsford 62, Thorp 6

Algoma 24, Sturgeon Bay 8

Almond-Bancroft 61, Tigerton/Marion 6

Amherst 56, Manawa 6

Antigo 42, Lakeland 28

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