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Pines Principal Latest Administrator AwardedSubmitted: 03/08/2013
Ben Meyer
Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter
bmeyer@wjfw.com

Pines Principal Latest Administrator Awarded
EAGLE RIVER - The honors just keep coming for administrators in the Northland Pines School District.

District Administrator Mike Richie was named the nation's Superintendent of the Year last year.

Now, a Pines principal is claiming her own honor.

"The lights were out. I still had no clue," Northland Pines Middle School Principal Jackie Coghlan said.

Coghlan had no clue that she would be surprised by her students and staff Friday morning.

The occasion?

Being named Wisconsin's middle school Principal of the Year.

"Her dedication to the kids, her work over 15 years in this school, her relationship with her staff really make her stand out as an outstanding principal in Wisconsin," said Joseph Moylan, President, Association of Wisconsin School Administrators.

"I didn't do anything by myself. There were people who were involved with it. That's a reflection of the people that I work with," Coghlan said.

Fifteen years at one place is a long time.

But it's an enjoyable ride when you love your job, like Jackie Coghlan does.

"I like it, and I do, because I have staff that are dedicated, and I truly do, and they believe in some of the same things I believe in," Coghlan said.

Now, she'll head to Washington, DC, to be considered as the National Principal of the Year.

"The great honor of being Principal of the Year is really today. Getting to hear your kids, and the way they feel about you. Getting to hear your staff and the way that they feel about you, and that your work matters," Moylan said.

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 IN OTHER NEWS

EAGLE RIVER - During the summer Northland Pines High School is being used as the home base for a foreign exchange program. 

The Northwoods Adventure Quest Program brings students from China and America together.

 Last year travel rules stopped the program from happening, but this year the students and organizers are more driven than ever to keep their mission going. 

"You get to form relationships with people from around the world," said 10- year- old Chase Neubauer. 

This is Neubauer's first time joining the two week Adventure Quest Program. 

The goal of the program is to do more than just keep kids busy during the summer. 

"[It] promotes connections with Wisconsin especially the Northern part [of Wisconsin with] all of China," said WISP Executive Director Xiaodong Kuang.

Kuang is one the organizers of the quest program. He couldn't think of a better way of promoting his goal than starting with young students. 

"[So that] the young generation, who will be the future leaders of the world, [can] appreciate cultures and know more about each other," said Kuang. 

This is Power Liu's first time coming to America with the program. 

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WESTON - The Habitat for Humanity of Wausau celebrated a big milestone on Saturday. The organization held the grand opening for its new Recycled Building Materials facility.

The new building is a place where people can go to buy new and used building materials. For the grand opening, there was face painting for kids, free hot dogs, and even a visit from Woody Woodchuck.

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THREE LAKES - One teenager decided to spend a day giving back to the Three Lakes community 18-year-old Maxwell Blanchard lives in L.A but always makes it back to Three Lakes during the summer. 

Blanchard learned how to water ski and wakeboard in Three Lakes at five years old. 

On Sunday he spent the day giving free water skiing and wakeboarding lessons.

"[To] get someone new out there to ski or at least get them attempting. It's always fun when you get the kids who are a little nervous out there and a little shaky, then they get out there and they love it," said Blanchard. 

Blanchard said every year the water sports community chooses a day to give back and participate in "International Pass the Handle Day."

 Kylee Swendson decided to help Blanchard this year with the lessons. 

"It's great for everybody to get a chance to learn especially people who don't get the opportunity every day," said Swendson. 

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RHINELANDER - In June, the Rhinelander City Council approved a fenced-in dog park at Shepard Park. It's something Tina Werres has been working towards for the last 10 years.

On Saturday, about 30 volunteers gathered at Shepard Park to clean up the south end of the park.

The fence is scheduled to be put up in about three weeks so Werres wanted to get the area cleaned up as soon as possible.

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MANITOWISH WATERS - "When you have something like this everybody turns a little bit Irish," said Irish Fest volunteer Ron Troller.

Ye Olde Shillelagh in Manitowish Waters hosted its Second Annual Irish Festival this weekend. The big draw for the volunteers and attendees is the music.

"Who doesn't like professional Irish music," said Troller.

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RHINELANDDER - Most people who kayak will go out for a few hours and cover several miles. But one southwestern Wisconsin man is trying to cover more than 400 miles as fast as possible.

Ben Sasse is from Muscoda and is trying to break the speed record for paddling the Wisconsin River.

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TOWN OF CLOVERLAND - Ed Renk hopes to sell his home on a quiet road near Eagle River soon.  But Renk worries his home won't sell as soon as buyers learn who'll be living a few doors down.

"Our feelings are not good about this deal," Renk said.

That "deal" is more of an order. Violent sex offender Steven Burgess, 41, will be placed on Chickaree Lake Road in Cloverland August 1.  It's the second time Burgess will be placed in the exact same home in four years.

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