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Tourist Spending Increased in 2012 for Oneida CountySubmitted: 05/03/2013
Story By Kailey Burton

Tourist Spending Increased in 2012 for Oneida County
ONEIDA COUNTY - This year it seems like tourists may NEVER come if this weather keeps up, but last year in Oneida County tourism was up.

Visitors spent 5.56% more than they did the year before. That's an extra $10 million for a total of $186 million.

Popular events consistently bring in visitors, but THIS much of an increase could mean the economy is getting better, and teamwork in advertising is paying off.

"The prices are rising, maybe less flights, people aren't flying as much. Because we're a 'drive-to' destination in Wisconsin, that boosts our overall toursim. And when you think of visiting Wisconsin, a lot of people think of the Northwoods so we hope to capture some of that," said Lara Reed, with the Oneida County Tourism Council.

Tourist dollars helped support more than 1,500 jobs in Oneida County in 2012. One of the biggest events is Hodag Country Festival. That draws in an average of $3 million PER DAY.


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 IN OTHER NEWS

MINOCQUA - You don't need to wait for the grass to turn green for golfing.

Minocqua's Ice Golf is an end of season charity tournament coming up on March 3rd.

The tournament raised more than $18,000  last year for charities including the food pantry and Dr. Kate Hospice.

It has become a Northwoods tradition for some people.

"First year we had it, we had only like 35 golfers, now last year we had over 300 golfers," says Albee's owner Randy Albrecht.

If you don't have a group, they'll put into one.

After everyone is done putting, there will be dinner and a raffle.

For tickets and info call: Albee's Yacht Club at 715-356-1366 OR The Thirsty Whale at 715-356-7108.


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MADISON - An effort to clean up voting records caused problems for some voters during Tuesday's spring primary.

Some voters' information was removed, even though it was current.

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WAUSAU - Wausau Police call the death of a 77-year-old man "suspicious," which is why it's treating the death of Lyle Leith as a homicide. 

Tuesday morning, police responded to a home on the 1000 block of Kickbusch Street. They found Leith dead, and called the circumstances suspicious. We learned Leith's name late Wednesday afternoon.

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WAUSAU - Anger over last Wednesday's Florida school shooting could force Congress to find some agreement on gun control. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) thinks it's about time.

The debate on gun rights and public safety has been a big focus since 17 people died at Stoneman Douglas High School.

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WAUSAU - Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) hopes to help family caregivers by offering them support and resources.

It's all part of the RAISE Family Caregivers Act signed into law by President Trump last month. RAISE stands for Recognize, Assist, Include, Support, and Engage.

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MINOCQUA - Kevin Bolger worked hard to get to this moment.

The Lakeland Union High School grad has won his fair share of cross-country ski races since earning a high school state championship title in 2011.

But now he'll get the opportunity to represent the United States at the Cross Country World Cup series in Finland and Sweden next month. 

"Skiing at this level is kind of like the next step you want to get to and ski at. I'm just beyond, I can't really explain it, I'm just super excited," said Bolger. 

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TOMAHAWK - The Tomahawlk VFW donated two electric wheelchairs to Highground Veterans Memorial Park in Neillsville.

The park features 155 acres with a number of memorials focused on different wars.

"It's just a really great feeling knowing that they can do this and they can get there and spend the time they need to reflect on what they need to reflect on," said Highground Executive Director Jon Weiler.

Weiler said most of the veterans visiting have a hard time moving around the large park without assistance from a wheelchair.

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