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Northland Pines joins Lakeland by installing major solar array at schoolSubmitted: 08/15/2017
Ben Meyer
Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter
bmeyer@wjfw.com

Northland Pines joins Lakeland by installing major solar array at school
EAGLE RIVER - Last year, Lakeland Union High School told us there should be more solar panel projects like Lakeland's across the country. Now, that school will soon have a neighboring district with a similar solar array.

Northland Pines plans to start installing a major solar project next month. Pines first started exploring a solar plan years ago.


"Once we actually see the panels being installed in September, I do think people will get more excited, intrigued maybe," said Northland Pines District Administrator Dr. Mike Richie. "We'll have people driving by, checking it out."

More than $660,000 in panels will go on the roof of the high school fieldhouse, behind Eagle River Elementary, and near Land O'Lakes Elementary.

They'll be used to produce energy for the schools and provide learning opportunities for the students.

"We're looking at the benefit to our students," Richie said. "Obviously, there will be a benefit for the environment. But our students will have a living laboratory at their fingertips every day."

A third-party investor is paying for the panels. After 12 years, the district can buy the panels outright. If it does that, it projects that it would save $50,000 in energy costs each year.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 01/18/2018

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

We take you live to the Medford area where a standoff started after someone called 911 just before 5 p.m. Wednesday.

We'll tell you about a public bus service that now serves Park Falls but is expanding its service to Phillips.

And last year's Eagle River World Snowmobile Derby champion from Tomahawk will give away his racing helmet, jacket and pants in a raffle to send members of Tomahawk's VFW to this year's honor flight. Tonight Nick Van Strydonk tells us why he chose to do this.

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 - The World Championship Derby started as a small oval racetrack on Dollar Lake.

The race began back in 1964 thanks to Chanticleer Inn's John and Betty Alward.

They wanted a way to keep business up during the slow winter season for themselves and fellow resort owners.

Their son Jake still runs the inn and remembers the excitement behind the "newness" of the sport.

"Every factory wanted their machine first! Money was not the object… it was getting the right machine the right equipment….The right this and that. People flew to Minneapolis to get and engine or a part!" says Alward.

The 55th World Championship Derby is this weekend.

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RHINELANDER - Packer fans might not recognize his name, but they've likely seen his photographs over the years. 

Vernon Biever first started photographing the Packers in 1941 as a freelancer, but it wasn't until 1946 that he became the team photographer. 

"He basically created a job for himself as the Packers' team photographer and just got to live his passion," said ArtStart Development Director Melinda Childs. 

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MADISON - Preliminary estimates show unemployment in Wisconsin reached a record low in December.

The state Department of Workforce Development released figures Thursday that show the unemployment rate in December was 3 percent. That's a record for December and matches the lowest rate on record.

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THREE LAKES - A new program at the Three Lakes School District gives students a chance to test drive their future careers.
The mentorship program lets students shadow a professional for a day.
Juniors and seniors can work with professionals in fields they're interested in.
Senior Maggie Servent is one of the ten students in the program.

She shadowed a pharmacist in Eagle River.
" I'm a little more at ease knowing that this is definitely something I'm going to enjoy once I get out into the real world and have this job," said Servent. 

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MERRILL - Lincoln County Sheriff Jeff Jaeger announced his retirement Wednesday. 

But he wants to remind everyone he's still got a year of hard work left. 

Jaeger said the decision wasn't an easy one after being in law enforcement for 38 years and sheriff for the last 11 years. 

"There's some sad feelings, if you will. I've been in the business for 38 years, working with a wonderful group of people for a great community. Just so blessed to have the support that we do in this area," said Jaeger. 

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EAGLE RIVER - The 2012 and 2017 World Snowmobile Derby Champion and Tomahawk native plans to use his fame to give back.

Nick Van Strydonk will give away his racing helmet, jacket and pants in a raffle.

Each ticket is $5.00 and he hopes to sell enough to send three members of Tomahawk's VFW to this year's honor flight.

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