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Northwoods Spotlight - Lac du Flambeau girls basketball - March 12Submitted: 03/12/2014
Story By Marisa Silvas

Northwoods Spotlight - Lac du Flambeau girls basketball - March 12
- Many young basketball players look up to NBA stars like Lebron James. But in Lac du Flambeau, they've found other 'natives' to inspire them instead.

Finding positive role models for young people is important.

"It was really inspiring seeing them having fun and just playing basketball," Ariana Allen - a seventh grader explains.

"I want to be like them one day and play for the Louisville Cardinals," Ash'lynn Thoms - another seventh grader adds.



They're talking about the Schimmel sisters. Shoni and Jude grew up on a reservation in Oregon. Now they're stars on the third ranked Louisville Cardinals and have become Native American sports icons.

The Lady Warriors basketball team piled into a bus last week and took the trip of a lifetime. They drove 11 hours to see the Schimmel sisters play.

"Borrowed, fund-raising, our youth funds," coach and parent Sheldon Williams explains. "It was all able to make this happen. To see the look on their faces to me was priceless."

The ladies of Lac Du Flambeau are members of the Ojibwe band. But they're just part of 1,500 who made the journey to Louisville.

"One of the signs said we traveled from Alaska to see the Schimmel sisters," seventh grader Nicole Wayman said. "So I was like - 'wow, it was not only us.'"

"It was amaizing," fifth grade player Amaya White adds. "Because it shows people around the world how the Schimmels inspire them."



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 IN OTHER NEWS

HARSHAW - More than 50 people from Vilas, Forest, and Oneida counties came together Wednesday to learn leadership skills. 

Northwoods United Way hosted the second annual Leaderfest at Rondele Ranch in Harshaw. 

Executive Director Nancy Sattler was excited to present this opportunity to people in the area. 

"We want to offer the opportunity for enrichment, learning, and growth and the opportunity also to network with other people from the Northwoods and to learn from them and maybe they can help them in the future," said Sattler. 

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RHINELANDER - Kids all over Wisconsin will head back to school soon.

However, workers at a Rhinelander bus service say knowing bus safety skills could safe your child's life.

"The song Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round inspired me so much. That's why I became a bus driver," said Jake Kriesel a Rhinelander bus driver who never puts a break on fun.

But Kriesel says bus safety is no laughing matter.
"Bus drivers only have one thing in mind and that is your safety," said Kriesel.

Kriesel drives for Bowen's Bus Service, and Thursday he will be a part of a School Bus Safety Open House.

"Making sure there're safe. That's really our number one job," said Kriesel.

The open house will have three bus emergency scenarios for kids to learn how to evacuate safely.

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EAGLE RIVER - A $14,000 donation will help bring kids from urban areas to the Northwoods.

Baden-Powell Northwoods Experience donated the money earlier this month.

The Milwaukee-based group tried to use that money to save a Laona Boy Scout camp last year, but it wasn't able to raise enough money fast enough. 

So, the group decided to donate the left over funds to Trees for Tomorrow. 

Executive Director Robin Ginner said the two groups missions line up well. 

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EAGLE RIVER - Wednesday's weather made it the perfect day for a group of people to grab their paddles and explore some Northwoods waters.

The Northwoods Land Trust invited the community on a tour of private and protected waters.

People met up to paddle down Deerskin River in Eagle River.

Executive Director of the Northwoods Land Trust Bryan Pierce said Deerskin River is special because it's a trout stream and known for its resources.

"Our intent is to try and keep it that high quality keep the water quality protected and also provide for both fish and wildlife habitat," said Pierce. 

Wednesday was also a celebration.

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MADISON - Wisconsin state Superintendent Tony Evers says his years of experience leading schools in the state makes him the best Democratic candidate to challenge Republican Governror Scott Walker for re-election next year.

Evers officially launched his candidacy on Wednesday.

He says in an interview that his three statewide victories as state superintendent show he can gather the support needed to defeat Walker.

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GREEN BAY - A Green Bay Police captain and a secretary sickened after opening a suspicious envelope have returned to work.

The Police Department headquarters was evacuated Monday afternoon when the workers became ill.

The workers were released from a hospital Monday night and returned to work Tuesday.

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WAUSAU - You'd never guess it seeing the rows of stocked shelves and fresh paint, but Kevin Korpela's Downtown Grocery store in Wausau once stood as four fire-damaged walls with no roof.

"We had a home to go to, it just wasn't ready yet," Korpela said.

Tuesday morning, Korpela and his wife, Megan Curtes Korpela, showed Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch around their new digs in its old location nearly two years after fire destroyed the grocery on North Third Street.  A teenager tossed a lit cigarette in a dumpster behind the building in September 2015, severely damaging the building, which also housed Evolve Fitness and Sweets on Third.

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