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NEWS STORIES

KC Menagerie closing the doorsSubmitted: 07/26/2013
Story By Ryan Michaels


RHINELANDER - Whenever a store or business shuts down, we automatically think "must be the economy."

KC Menagerie in downtown Rhinelander is doing just fine. But the owners are shutting their doors just because it's time.

After seven years of watching children's faces light up, KC Menagerie in Rhinelander will be closing at the end of August according to owner Cindy Tomlanovich.

"It's been fun. It's been interesting. It's a little bit heartbreaking leaving but it's time."

It's not the economy, nor some large superstore, in fact the store was doing quite well. But it's simply time to enjoy life, says Cindy.

"I know we look extremely young, but we are of retirement age and it is time. We have a grandchild we'd like to spend more time with. We would like to do a little more traveling. I have family in different places and we'd like to go see them and spend some time with them."

For Cindy and her husband it wasn't always about making a profit. But about bringing excitement to a little kid. Even making a childhood memory. But just like childhood things come to an end.

Susan McCoy has shopped at KC Menagerie ever since it was opened. "All of the little guys and girls they are going to miss this. I've brought my grandson in. He'd get really excited and want to play with the wooden toys, the trains and the cars and then he was really interested in the science stuff. It's just the uniqueness and the type of toys."

Yet there's still hope this toy store will continue to bring joy to the community.

"My hopes would be that someone would come in and would want to purchase the store and take it over," says Cindy. "I'd like to thank everybody who's been with us through the years and for them, I hope that this toy store can continue."

If that doesn't happen, the doors will close at the end of August. The store will have a 20-percent off sale on all items until the store closes.




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 IN OTHER NEWS

KENNAN - When you hear the word "mush," you may think of huskies pulling sleds in the winter, but in the summer, sled dogs often are still hard at work practicing for races in the snow.

It's called dryland dog sledding.

The Baum Family of Price County is particularly passionate about it. So passionate that they will host its first dryland derby on their farm this October. They expect to have about 70 racers from all over the world.

It's an international sport, and it can be very physically demanding.

"You start when they're a puppy," said Ailena Baum, a dryland dog musher. "Some of it's sled dog culture, the older dogs teach it to the younger dogs."

The Baums have been sled dog racing for years and they practice on their farm near Catawba. For them, dog sledding is part of their family. They travel together for races, and they practice together.

Ailena Baum introduced her husband to the sport when they first met. Now he says he is just as passionate.

"I was impressed," said Dan Bocock, Ailena Baum's husband. "I was hooked."

They say it takes the whole family to raise the dogs, spending at least a few hours a day feeding them, giving them water and training them.

When the Baum girls were young, they started running dogs. About 10 years ago, they bred huskies for sledding. Now, they have 13 huskies.

"And we're going through about a couple tons of food every year, and it's got to be high quality food," Baum said. "When we buy food, I mean, I think it's costing us about $55 for a 45 lb. bag of food."

The dryland derby is open to the public and will take place at the Baum Farm on October 17-18. 

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Deputies and a police K9 tracked the man for close to an hour.

They eventually found him in the back of a semi-trailer.

The man was armed with a hand gun.

Deputies told him to drop the gun, but he shot himself instead.

Outside agencies will be brought in to handle the investigation.

The man's name has not yet been released.

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