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People brave cold temperatures at 14th Annual Polar Bear Plunge Submitted: 01/04/2014
Story By Shardaa Gray

People brave cold temperatures at 14th Annual Polar Bear Plunge
ST. GERMAIN - Bone chilling temperatures didn't stop people from jumping into an icy lake.

It was all to help people affected by cancer.

Newswatch 12 takes you to St. Germain for the 14th annual Polar Bear Plunge.

For a few seconds you feel paralyzed and shocked after jumping into a freezing lake.

"It'll take your breath away, but I understand the concept of it. 30 seconds of freezing cold water is nothing compared to people dealing with cancer have to go through every day during their treatment." said WRJO's Co-Emcee, Amy Linnett.

For 14 years, people who have or are affected by cancer jump into a very icy Big Saint Germain Lake.

It raises money for Angel On My Shoulder; an organization founded by Lolly Rose after her husband died from cancer.

"My children and I wanted to make something good out of something bad. We wanted to start a foundation that would support those living with or affected by cancer." Rose said.

"Our daughter was diagnosed with a brain tumor. She was actually one of the 22 cases ever known in the world," said volunteer, Eric Schoeneck.

"We spent a lot of time down in Madison for surgeries and saint Joe's in Marshfield. After seven months she lost her battle with cancer. She passed away three and half years old."
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Through the support of the foundation, Schoeneck and other families get the support they need.

"Everybody in the organization wanted to make sure we were comfortable and taking care of that we could focus on Jadelyn's care," Schoeneck said.

"It's just a heartwarming experience. That's why we do what we do with the volunteering."

It might sound crazy to jump into an icy lake.

But if you're brave enough to do it, there are some things to consider.

"We always recommend shoes because once you get out of the water, you're back on the snow and ice and it's not good on the feet." Linnett said.

"You want to make sure you put light clothing on because when you once you get out of the water… make sure you're hydrated as well." second time jumper, Margaret Willis said.

Freezing is an understatement, but it's definitely for a good cause.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 02/22/2018

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

People hoping to keep a violent child sex offender from moving into their Forest County community needed to go to Shawano County to make their case today. Newswatch 12's Dakota Sherek is there and will bring you updates on what happens at the hearing and the judge's ruling which we expect tonight.

We talk to two local resource officers about how their jobs have changed over the years. Some of that change has happened because of school violence across the country and right here in the Northwoods.

And we talk to the executive director of the Birkebeiner race in Hayward about the enthusiasm people in the area have with the big event coming up this weekend.

We'll bring you the details on these stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

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WISCONSIN - A central Wisconsin state representative believes smaller communities in Wisconsin should not be treated as a welcome center for sex offenders, particularly sexual violent ones.

Democrat State Representative Katrina Shankland voted for a motion in the state budget to keep sex offenders in their original counties where the crimes took place.

However, Governor Scott Walker vetoed that motion in September because it go rid of the rule that keeps offenders away from schools, churches and other places children might be.

Now, there are three new pending sexual violent offenders waiting to be placed in rural areas of Portage County even though the crimes were committed elsewhere.

Shankland is trying once again to keep these offenders in their original home counties with a budget amendment that has already passed the assembly.

However, Governor Scott Walker vetoed that motion in September to keep offenders away from schools, churches and other places children might be.

Now, there are three new pending sexual violent offenders waiting to be placed in rural areas of Portage County even though the crimes were committed elsewhere.

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NORTHWOODS - Lakes and nature bring people from all over the country to the Northwoods during the summer.
Those same attractions get some people to stay here.
Home sales and home prices in the Northwoods went up in 2017.

The Wisconsin Realtors Association reports about 1,300 more homes sold last year than in 2016 in Wisconsin.
A local broker saw the increase firsthand.
"The markets that are going crazy right now are premium homes. The Minocqua chain is red hot, the Eagle River chain is pretty hot the Three Lakes chain is pretty hot and there are some chains of lakes that are less hot," said Coldwell Banker broker Jim Mulleady. 

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MERRILL - Trinity Lutheran School in Merrill doesn't have room for any more kindergarten students next year.

Its class is already full, partly because some families can send their kids to Trinity for free.

For the third straight year, Trinity will participate in Wisconsin's private school choice program.

This year, the state pays tuition for about 30 of Trinity's 120 total students.

"Parents like the Christian base, obviously. That's the main reason people send [their kids] here," said School Administrator Kathy Yahr. "They're keeping them here more now because of the opportunities that we offer."

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DNR hosts meeting about CWDSubmitted: 02/22/2018

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THE NORTHWOODS - A positive CWD test led to baiting and feeding bans starting in Lincoln and Langlade Counties and extending in Oneida, this month.

Hunters don't have a say, but the DNR took the first step to help the community understand the current CWD landscape. It hosted a meeting at Tomahawk high school on Wednesday.

About 50 people attended the meeting.

DNR wildlife biologist Janet Brehm gave a presentation. She said people were upset about the ban. Brehm emphasized that the ban was not put in place by the DNR, it's a part of Wisconsin state law. 

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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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HAYWARD - Trail conditions for this year's American Birkebeiner race will be just about perfect.

Executive Director Ben Popp said there's about a six inch base, three inches of snow on top, and more snow on the way in the Hayward area. 

"The energy right now is just unreal. You can feel it here in Hayward and Cable and certainly around the world. Now with a gold medal, Jessie Diggins and Kikkan Randall, brings more excitement to not only this event, but the sport. So it's a really great time to be a cross country skier," said Popp.

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