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Northwoods Spotlight - Packers Tailgate Tour in Merrill - Apr 23Submitted: 04/23/2014
Story By Marisa Silvas

Northwoods Spotlight - Packers Tailgate Tour in Merrill - Apr 23
MERRILL - The official Packers bus rolled into Merrill last weekend. It was the final stop of their 9th annual Tailgate Tour.

More than 650 fans of the green and gold were delighted to see current and former players up close.

"Fans come to watch us at games," Packers kicker Mason Crosby explains. "They come to where we are all the time. So this is really a cool experience to go out, go in the community and just tell them thank you."

Former Packers quarterback Lynn Dickey adds, "Every stop that we've had, the fans are all so hungry and just starving to see us."


"It's very important to us and that's why we come out and do these type of events," Packers cornerback Jarrett Bush said. "Just to let them know that we have their backs."

Travis Ziegel - one of the hundreds of Packers fans in attendance was excited.

"Being able to meet superstars, you know we're in the small town of Merrill," Ziegel explains. "There's not a whole lot of stuff that goes on around here and to get another autograph and add another thing to my collection, it's an incredible feeling."

It also gave the players a chance to reconnect in a relaxed atmosphere.

"There's not a lot of serious moments and that's the way we approached our football season too," Dickey said. "You've got to joke around and have a sense of humor. I could spend a lot of time with those two. They're a blast to be around."

Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy enjoys the tour every year.

"What I really enjoy is seeing the interaction between the current and former players. By the end of the week they really have established a bond and they realize there's not that much difference even though there's about 30 years difference in age."

The party raised close to 50 thousand dollars. One hundred percent of it will go to improve the Riverbend hiking and biking Trail.

"Part of our whole purpose is to provide a venue for people to be able to enjoy the recreational opportunities first," Gene Bebel of the River District Foundation explains. "But also for the economic development of the entire community."

Now that the fun is over, it's time to get back on the field. Offseason workouts begin this week and the first OTA's are scheduled for May 28.


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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 06/26/2017

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

Last year road construction forced the 4th of July parade in Rhinelander to be rerouted effecting several businesses on the route. Tonight we talk with businesses about what it was like last year and how they expect business to be much better this year.

We'll show you how crews were hard at work pumping out water that caused flooding in the Lake Nokomis area.

And some of the Newswatch 12 staff will strap on some snowshoes tonight to participate in this year's snowshoe baseball games in Lake Tomahawk. We'll bring you a preview and tell you how the league is preparing for the event.

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

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EAGLE RIVER - Before you head out on an outdoor adventure this summer, you might want to check your packing list.

Tom Stephens and his wife Jessica Allen own The Hiker Box in Eagle River.

They're used to helping people get ready for outdoor trips like camping, hiking, or kayaking.

They say packing food, water, fire starters and emergency blankets are crucial.

Clothing is important, too, right down to what socks you wear.

"If you think that a standard cotton sock is going to take care of you out there, you'll find out that you're wrong in a very painful and lasting way with huge blisters," says Tom.

Tom also says there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad gear.

You should also bring along a first aid kit, but you should make it your own.

"You need to go through that and look at it from your eyes and what you need for first aid. Do you have special conditions? Do you prefer a certain bandage for your ankle?" says Jessica.

It's also good to bring a light, a compass, and repair tools on your trip.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. - A conservative Republican senator who doesn't back the GOP health care bill is using unusually sharp tones to criticize party leaders.

Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson is accusing top Republicans of trying to jam the legislation through the Senate. He says the leadership effort is "a little offensive" and says conservatives haven't had input into the proposal.

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PHILLIPS - Being a part of a community can mean support and lasting relationships. That's true for many people living in Price County.

This year, the annual county fair needs the community's help more than ever. On Saturday, a Community Day was held on the fairgrounds in hopes of raising money.

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RHINELANDER - This year community members hit the pavement for the 11th Annual Hodag Run for Your Life on Saturday.

The event includes a half marathon, a 10K, a 5K, and even a "Chase the Hodag" run for kids. Organizers say the Hodag chase is always a big hit with kids.

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RHINELANDER - Usually when we think of people fighting world hunger, collecting food donations and other community service events come to mind. But a group of kids from Rhinelander are fighting world hunger a different way.

On Sunday, 14 people, including kids in grades five through 12 and some of their parents, set out on a weeklong 250 mile bike ride to raise money. They're all part of Rhinelander's Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Pastor Tammy Barthels says this is a great way for kids to learn about world hunger.

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RIB MOUNTAIN - One person died after a single car crash in Rib Mountain Sunday night.

Police say the man was driving when the car went into a pond just after 7 p.m. The accident happened near Lilac Avenue and Phlox Lane.

Two people went into the water and pulled the driver from the car, but the driver died.

The Marathon County Sheriff's Office and Medical Examiners Office are conducting the investigation.

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