LAONA - You'll see plenty of trains in Northwoods Museums, but things feel different in Laona.
The Lumberjack steam train cowboy robbery reenactment is all about bringing cowboys to the Northwoods. The event happens twice a year.
It’s sponsored by a local nonprofit, Camp 5.
“I got a telephone call about eight years ago from a man that said he'd like to come up and rob my train," Camp 5 President Cate Dellin said. "I said, you want to rob the train?”
So that's what happened.
Cowboys rob an old steam train on horseback. The family friendly event also helps keep Wisconsin's logging history alive.
Camp 5 wants to make sure people are not just having fun, but they're learning.
“It's a wonderful opportunity to educate people about natural resources and the wise use of natural resources,” Dellin said.
That's the goal at Camp 5. They think younger Wisconsinites don't know enough about their state's past. Dellin hopes places like the Camp 5 logging museum can change that.
“I just hope that we can continue to educate people and have them understand that a lot of people's grandparents were in the north like this, and whose great-grandparents worked in the woods," Dellin said. "It's kind of a cultural thing for Wisconsin.”
A culture founded on the railroad and sustained by logging. Things might be different today. But that doesn't stop Camp 5 from going back.
STOUGHTON - Police in Stoughton are investigating a threatening letter that was sent to a black teenager, with a photo that depicted him as the victim of a lynching.
The letter had a Madison postmark but no return address. The family told the newspaper it contained a photo showing two men hanging from a tree, with a mob watching. A picture of the 18-year-old was superimposed onto one of the men.
MERRILL - When you think of movies you probably think of Hollywood, but one man from Northcentral Wisconsin is bringing his feature film to the local screen.
Wausau’s Jarrod Crooks not only makes movies, but he also stars in them.
His latest film, "Dispatched" is based off the Elvis Presley movie, “Girl Happy,” says filmmaker Jarrod Crooks. “My character Jake is sent to go watch my bosses daughter while she’s on vacation with a friend. Then an old enemy is kind of after him while he’s on vacation, so some things happen.”
Crooks made, "Dispatched" on a $5,000 budget and it’s full of romance, action, and comedy.
“My buddy would joke with me, ‘why don’t you just pick one genre man and then just go with it'," says Crooks. "I’m like because I want to make this movie how I want to make It'." "I actually like romantic comedies, I think they’re kind of fun, and I think they’re cute. I like action films because I’m a guy, and I like comedy because Jim Carey is great.”
Crooks is only 28 and has already made 4 feature films. His passion started when he was 12 years old.
“I went over to my friend’s house and he had a video camera. I was like oh we should make a movie, and at that time I was really into, “Wishbone,” says Crooks.
“We’d always remake our own literature pieces. Then I saw my first Jackie Chan movie and I’m like, alright it’s settled we’re doing action films from now on," says Crooks. “From then on it was just a love affair with the filmmaking.”
His latest film will be shown at the Cosmo Theatre in Merrill on Saturday at 5pm.
“The fact that I’m bringing it to central Wisconsin is great because this is where I grew up," says Crooks. "All my family and friends get to see it, so I’m very excited about that and you get to see yourself on the big screen what’s better than that.”
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