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Connect to your neighbors with NextdoorSubmitted: 08/18/2014
Story By Jeanine Ilacqua


MERRILL - The city of Merrill allows its citizens to take part in a neighborhood watch on their cell phones.

The website and phone app called Nextdoor connects neighborhoods on a secure social media platform.

When you join Nextdoor, you are sorted into a neighborhood based on where you live. Anyone in the city of Merrill can join the Nextdoor Merrill neighborhood.

There are secure pages for classified ads, lost dogs, town events, and government updates.

"It's really a way to communicate as a neighbor with another neighbor. And for us, the police department in the city of Merrill, it gives us a way to communicate with the people in our city on this social media," said Merrill Police Chief Ken Neff.

The Merrill Police Department launched the neighborhood last September. The app was launched to help with crime prevention.

"I just want to continue to build this to make it easier for us to get information out, and get information from people in the city," said Neff.

Merrill has about 340 registered neighbors. As more members join the site, the Merrill police department hopes to set up neighborhood watch groups.

"I would like to be able to, from this point, set up those neighborhood watch groups and run that out of Nextdoor. And, have people that are responsible for that area that we can communicate that they can disseminate information to their neighbors," said Neff.

If you are part of another community you can join your own neighborhood or start one yourself.

"Anyone can go to Nextdoor dot com and it asks for your address. If there isn't a neighborhood started in your city, you can start one yourself," says Neff.

You can join at www.nextdoor.com or on your smartphone.



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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 09/29/2016

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

Merrill leaders decided not to discipline City Administrator Dave Johnson and Fire Chief Dave Savone for taking items from the Lincoln County Fairgrounds that some people considered historic and valuable. Merrill Mayor Bill Bealecki issued a statement to the media saying that although Johnson and Savone didn't violate city policy, their actions were in poor judgment. We'll hear from Johnson on what he thinks about the statement.

The Northwoods area has seen several cases of deer poaching in the last week, and most of them were not caught. But authorities recently caught two teenagers in the act thanks to neighbors in the Lakeland area. You'll hear from the Conservation Ward Supervisor on how they were caught.

And, we'll tell you about a local company that is transferring ownership to all of the employees.

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

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ONEIDA COUNTY - No matter the weather, a glass of wine can be enjoyed year round. Even in the bitter cold, there are wineries in Oneida County that still offer tastings and wine tours.

"When people think of a winery, they do think of grape wines. They're kind of surprised, pleasantly surprised when they come to our winery and see fruit wines," said Terri Schenck from Three Lakes Winery.

The Oneida County wineries are a little bit different than what you'd see in Napa Valley.

"It is a farm so we are working on different crops, black currants, apples and an experimental vineyard," said Linda Welbes from Brigadoon Winery in Tripoli.

With the unique flavors of wines, Three Lakes Winery and Brigadoon Winery often see a lot of visitors from out of town.

"They usually say, 'I didn't know how much I needed this.' They relax, they unwind whether it's summer time or fall, just to sit outdoors when it's beautiful, it's peaceful, it's quiet," said Welbes.

Three Lakes Winery has a lot of history behind their building. 

"The actual winery itself is an old Chicago Northwestern Train Depot that was built in 1880. There was a tornado or wind storm that happened in 1924 that destroyed the building," said Schenck.

The building was rebuilt shortly after. Every fall the winery hosts cranberry marsh tours.

"There are several bogs in the area and it's interesting for people to be able to go and see a bog and see how the cranberries are harvested and what goes into making cranberry wine," said Schenck.

With winter right around the corner, the crops won't be producing much.

"The crops, they are what they are. It's farming so there's not much you have to do and you just hope for good weather. Lots of snow cover, that helps," said Welbes.

The Three Eagle Trail runs right into the parking lot of Three Lakes Winery. That brings in a lot of traffic year-round.

"In the winter time it turns into the snowmobile trail. We will get a lot of snowmobile traffic in the winter time and a lot of foot traffic, hiking, biking people in the summer time," said Schenck.

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MINOCQUA - You can see the leaves just beginning to turn here, but soon the Northwoods will be a whirlwind of oranges, reds, and yellows. 

"Not only is the environment around us changing, but just kind of the pace of life in the Northwoods starts to change a little," said Northwoods Zip Line General Manager Andrew Warner.

Many people enjoy hiking or taking a scenic drive to view the fall colors, but Northwoods Zip Line in Minocqua offers people a different perspective.

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TOMAH - Wisconsin cranberry growers are expecting an above-average crop yield this year because of nearly ideal growing conditions.

Ed Grygleski is president of Valley Corp., a cranberry producer near Tomah in west central Wisconsin. He tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that it has been a great year for growing because there has been plenty of sun without extreme heat.

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MADISON - The state Assembly's Republican and Democrat leaders are quarreling over how to fund Wisconsin's roads.

Gov. Scott Walker has proposed delaying projects and borrowing rather than raise the gas tax and vehicle registration fees. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos has balked at that, saying it's not a long-term solution.

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MINNEAPOLIS - A Minnesota man says his family has been given little information on how his two sisters died while vacationing on a tropical African island.

The bodies of 37-year-old Annie Korkki and 42-year-old Robin Korkki were found in their resort villa last week in Seychelles, an archipelago nation off Africa's east coast in the Indian Ocean.

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RHINELANDER - Hockey players in Rhinelander will see some big changes. 

After getting a large anonymous donation, the Rhinelander Ice Arena will get a new training area, weight room, locker room, and more.

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