Wisc. Building Commission green-lights phase 2 of Rib Mountain State Park modernization Submitted: 01/22/2014
Story By Adam Fox

RIB MOUNTAIN - Rib Mountain State Park will get more than $740,000 in upgrades in 2014.

It is part of a project approved by the Wisconsin Building Commission Tuesday.

This project will improve the existing day-use area, including the amphitheater area, and will continue to convert existing campground areas into day-use facilities, according to the Building commission press release.

Steve Krallis, DNR budget analyst, says the park used to focus heavily on camping, but the park is using the upgrades to target more day activities like picnics and hiking.

"The campsites are being converted to day use facilities," Krallis said. "So improved toilet facilities, ultimately there will be some improvements to a shelter area and flush toilets will hopefully be added in the next phase."

This portion of the project will also continue improvements to Park Road at the state park.

The project will also remove the existing Rib Mountain State Park entrance sign and install a new one.

The existing shower building and two outdated and non-accessible vault toilet buildings will be demolished. These structures will be replaced
with a new centralized vault toilet facility, according to the press release.

Organizers have not started planning the third phase of the project.

"The parks (department) is going to start working on that in the upcoming biennium (budget)," Krallis said. "I know that they're going to continue to move the park to try to make it a more premiere day use facility."

Project leaders say the second phase of the project will be done by the end of the year.

Park modernization started in 2009 with phase one costing $6,116,900.

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MINOCQUA - By the time most of us finish breakfast, we already start planning what to eat for lunch.

For some kids all around the world, that next meal sometimes never comes.

The Food for Kidz Minocqua committee will lend a helping hand to change that Saturday morning.

Lakeland Union High School's common area will transform into a full-blown assembly line.

Food for Kidz volunteers will pour and pack ingredients into plastic bags.

The goal is 175,000 packed meals.

Food for Kidz needs more volunteers by tomorrow to meet that goal.

"If you haven't experienced this, come out and try it and you'll go away with just a great feeling," said Food for Kidz co-chair John Breiten.

Kids and adults of all ages are welcome to walk in to volunteer.

The food packages will be shipped off to anywhere from Honduras to Mozambique.

Some special meals will be set aside and sent to local communities in the Northwoods.

"It's just a great, fun community event. I think the kids especially take something away that they are giving beyond themselves," said Food for Kidz sponsor and Lakeland Union High School Spanish teacher Karen Roerich.

Walk-in volunteers are welcome to attend either packing shift tomorrow morning.

The first shift is from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. The second shift is from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

If you can't make it out to Lakeland Union High School Saturday, donations are always welcome.

Call John Breiten at 715-686-7570 for more info.

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