Hodag Country Festival campsites openSubmitted: 07/07/2013
Story By Lauren Stephenson

RHINELANDER - The Hodag Country Festival kicks off Thursday.

But some country music fans have already staked out their camping spots.

"Surprisingly for a 4th of July weekend, we've got a very large number of campers in here. We probably estimate about 40 percent of our 5,000 and some campsites are already set up," says Dawn Eckert, the festival's co-owner.

She co-owns the festival with her two sisters.

Eckert thinks the year-round work makes the event a success.

"Year-round we have 2.5 employees in the office. This isn't a business that once one's over we don't worry about it until the next year. It's year round planning, and with all the five of us organizers, it's definitely a part-time job year-round, and full-time for a few months out of the year," she says.

About 20,000 people attend each day of the four-day long festival.

They will have about 75 vendors at the grounds.

But local businesses also benefit from the tourists who come to the festival.

"Those people are all here enjoying the Northwoods, and enjoying this beautiful weather that we're having on the lakes, and boating, and golfing, and taking advantage of all the Northwoods has to offer," Eckert says.

Sixteen groups will perform over the four day event.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com


LAKE TOMAHAWK - In the back room of Todd Ahrensdorf's butcher shop this week, you'll find him steadily cleaning deer.  The Lake Tomahawk butcher has steady, but not overwhelming, business.

"Got enough work to keep us busy," Ahrensdorf said.

For nearly three decades, Ahrensdorf has ridden the wave every gun-deer season, processing anywhere from about 75 deer this year up to 500 in years past.

+ Read More


Wisconsin just finished it's deadliest hunting season in years.The latest death happened near Spencer in Marathon County.

+ Read More

Play Video

WAUSAU - Police departments across northcentral Wisconsin keep their eyes on the national news. But will recent police shootings—including those of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; Dontre Hamilton in Milwaukee;  and Tony Robinson in Madison—change the ways in which local departments train their new officers?

+ Read More

MADISON - Republican lawmakers are circulating a bill that would scale back the water bodies that could be designated special natural areas.

Currently, the Department of Natural Resources' board can designate a number of water bodies as areas of special natural resource interest where construction projects require permits. The types of water bodies include trout streams; surface waters identified as an outstanding or exceptional resource water; waters that contain endangered or threatened species; wild rice waters; wild or scenic rivers; and ecologically significant coastal wetlands.

+ Read More

MERRILL - Merrill hopes that having snowmobiles zipping through town this winter will provide an economic boost for the city. 

This year, the city council approved ATV, UTV, and snowmobile routes in town Those vehicles will share city streets with cars in many areas.

Allowing people to use those alternate modes of transportation could convince more winter tourists to stop in Merrill instead of traveling somewhere farther north to shop.

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - Rhinelander voters will decide in February whether to give the school more money.

The School District of Rhinelander will try to pass a referendum.

It would cost about $5 million each year for the next three years.

+ Read More

MERRILL - With the season of giving upon us, many people will be looking for ways to help out those who are in need this winter.

This year, you will only have to go as far as your closet to help families living in the Northwoods.

+ Read More
+ More General News

Click Here