STEVENS POINT - NHL star Joe Pavelski feels at home on the ice... but he also enjoys hitting the links. The combination of the two sports led to his annual charity event.
Marisa Silvas caught up with the former Badger in this week's Northwoods Spotlight.
Joe Pavelski returned home to many smiling faces. The Plover native reconnected with his roots for his 6th annual charity golf tournament.
"When I can come back to Plover and Stevens Point and see friends and everyone that traveled for the event it's always special," Pavelski explains.
The event's a great opportunity for the community to get to know the two-time Olympian off the ice.
"Joe is a fellow that's easy to meet, easy to talk to," golfer Richard Wnek adds.
"I was a hockey player as a child and played in the same conference as Joe," Joe Flanders from Rhinelander explains. "It's a good time to get out and play some golf and see some old friends. It's for a good cause and it's hockey related so that's cool."
The money raised will stay right here, where Joe grew up. It's funneled back into the Stevens Point Youth Hockey Association.
"We do have a long term goal of putting a second sheet of ice in," Nicki Gulan - the tournament coordinator said. "But for right now it goes to the general fund and helps purchase equipment for kinds just getting started in hockey and other costs associated with running the rink."
Pavelski's list of hockey accomplishments continues to grow. Last week he was named as a second team NHL All Star.
"You always look to get better in certain areas of your game," Pavelski points out. "You know it's nice to be able to score goals the way you think you should be able to and hopefully that continues."
Joe's coming off his strongest season yet. He was the NHL's third-leading goal-scorer with 41. But the Sharks year ended in heartbreak, losing in the first round of the playoffs to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Kings.
"The disappointing end to the season is tough," Pavelski explains. "It's one of the hardest ones we've had to deal with. You see other teams win and you want to be that, so you're a little jealous. But that'll be one of the driving forces to push us farther."
Moving forward, it's clear Joe will always have support and fans back home.
"He's one of the top players in the NHL and he brings a lot to Stevens Point," golfer T. Gulan said. "He donates a lot here and we love him."
MERRILL - Members of a Northwoods union chapter gathered unique inspiration for a fundraiser - The Beatles.
Merrill-area Local 6 members gathered Wednesday on the Wisconsin flowage to raise money for groups in need of assistance. The union leaders organized boat rides, raffles, barbecues, and contests. The inspiration for the fundraiser came, in part, from the 1965 Beatles single Help!
"I found out it was the anniversary of the 'Help!' release from The Beatles record, and I decided, let's help our community," said Local 6 Vice President Valerie Nelson. "Our membership is very passionate about certain organizations within our community. One being the Lincoln County Humane Society, the local food pantry, and the American Cancer Society."
Gardens need some help with large temperature swings in summer
RHINELANDER - Northwoods heat the past few days forced plants to endure different weather, but you don't need to do extra gardening just because it's hot.
Experts at Hanson's Garden Village in Rhinelander say plants can manage the heat just fine. On hot, sunny days, many plants will wilt, but that doesn't mean they need more water.
"If the soil is moist on a hot day, I wouldn't water more. That's probably more harm. The plant can only take up so much moisture at a time, so I would just hold off on watering," says Sue Hanson, Hanson's Garden Village Co-Owner.
WOODRUFF - Americans will eat about 7 billion hot dogs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Wednesday, millions of Americans celebrated National Hot Dog day. That was the case in the Northwoods.
Hoggie Doggies Snack Shack is a staple in Woodruff. Their All-American favorite is the Chicago Style Dog.
The owner Judy Rossi has been there for 12 years and says they go through a lot of dogs.
"Last season we went through almost 17,000 hot dogs. This year we're on track for about 18,000," says Rossi. "Statistically we go through about 8 tons of potatoes in a season, which is close to 16,000 pounds for our homemade french fries. Those are some big numbers for this little place."
MADISON - Unemployment is up in all of Wisconsin's largest cities and most counties.
The state Department of Workforce Development reported Wednesday that unemployment rates in June increased in all of the state's 32 largest cities. Unemployment rates went up in 61 of 72 counties and remained unchanged in the other 11.
Wisconsin's monthly unemployment rate in June was 5.7 percent, unchanged from May.
EAGLE RIVER - A new type of foundation could give you a better way to build a home, and the idea for the improvement starts right here in the Northwoods.
Composite Panel Systems in Eagle River builds composite panels for home foundations. Composite means anything made of two or more materials, which includes fiberglass in this case. The company describes the EPITOME Quality Foundation Wall as a revolutionary composite building solution for residential foundations.
The company makes them off site, and then they put them together on location. Composite Panel Systems' Scott Weber says that means a shorter build time compared to concrete foundations.
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