Paul Bunyan Fest returns to Eagle RiverSubmitted: 08/16/2017
Allie Herrera
Allie Herrera

Paul Bunyan Fest returns to Eagle River
EAGLE RIVER - Eagle River's annual Paul Bunyan Fest brings out thousands of people. This year was no exception. Organizers say about 3,000 people filled the streets of downtown Eagle River on Wednesday.

The 37th annual Paul Bunyan Fest featured chainsaw carving demonstrations, more than 80 arts and craft booths, and music.

"Paul Bunyan is really about celebrating our logging camp heritage here in Eagle River and we do this event so that our visitors that are here during the week have an opportunity to hang out with us and celebrate with us," said Events Coordinator Natalie Spiess.

Spiess says the event grows each year. About 400 pounds of roast beef were cooked for the Paul Bunyan sandwich.

"I just think that it's great. I mean, I love all of the people here. I love that there are people that come and visit our community and want to be a part of the community," said Spiess.

For an Eagle River man, the annual Paul Bunyan Fest is a great way for him to show off what he can do with chainsaws. Ken Schels has been doing demonstrations at the Paul Bunyan Fest for about 20 years. He grew up in the area and has been working with wood and nature for most of his life.

"I worked in the woods then I started carving presents for my father with a chainsaw and you know we still do some. We like to do this festival here. We don't do too many others, but it's just a lot of fun," said Schels.

During Wednesday's demonstration, Schels carved a boy's face into the wood. He says it's always nice seeing people of all ages show interest in his work.

"You explain the saw's a little bit and the wood, you know? So, they know what's going on and enjoy it. They seem to take it all in," said Schels.

For more information on his work, click on the link below.

Related Weblinks:
Ken Schels Website

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com


ARBOR VITAE - Jumpstarting your fitness routine can be difficult at first, but some people opt to do it in a big way.

Boot camp fitness combines obstacle-style exercises over ten weeks.

While the physical results of boot camp won't last you forever, it can set the bar high for your fitness standards.

Zero Point Fitness owners Bob Krueger says to expect peaks and valleys in your journey.

"Definitely whether it is in strength or weight loss or body fat loss there are benefits all the way around. My biggest thing is longevity of life," says Krueger.

Registration for Zero Point Fitness's spring boot camp is open now.

Click below for more info on registration.

+ Read More

Play Video

WAUSAU - Gov. Scott Walker sees health insurance premiums going up and insurers leaving Wisconsin's Obamacare marketplaces.

He has a plan he says will help fix both problems.

After touring the new cardiac intensive care unit at Aspirus Wausau Hospital on Tuesday, Walker promoted his plan.

"In my mind, Washington has failed [on health care]. Wisconsin is going to lead," he said.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - A Rhinelander woman stole nearly $30,000 from the car dealership that she worked at, according to a criminal complaint.

Police arrested Anna Petersen this week and prosecutors charged her with a felony of theft in a business setting.  She made her initial appearance in Oneida County Court Tuesday afternoon.

Her bosses at Rhinelander GM told detectives Petersen, 41, authorized at least five checks to be cashed as "petty cash" over the last two months.  The checks totaled to $28,796.86.

+ Read More

Play Video

THE NORTHWOODS - When you book a hotel or rent a house you expect a certain level of standard when it comes to health and safety.

With a recent change in state short-term rental laws, Oneida County worries about getting every place inspected.

Currently there are about 220 rentals in Oneida County that require an annual inspection from the Oneida County Health Department, with only three environmental health specialists to do so.

A new law makes it easier for people to rent their homes, which will likely add to their work load. 

+ Read More

MERRILL - A 27-year veteran of the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office hopes to become that department's next leader.  Lieutenant Ken Schneider announced his candidacy for Lincoln County Sheriff on Tuesday afternoon.

Current Sheriff Jeff Jaeger announced he would retire at the end of his term, which finishes in early 2019.  Jaeger has been sheriff for 11 years.

Schneider currently serves as senior patrol supervisor.  He started his career with the LCSO as a corrections officer.  In the past, Schneider supervised the Sheriff's Office detectives, telecommunications division, and was SWAT team supervisor.

+ Read More

WAUSAU - Wausau police believe a dead man may have been killed.  In a press release, the Wausau Police Department says officers responded to reports of a dead body in the 1000 block of Kickbusch Street on Tuesday around 10 a.m.

Investigators noted "suspicious circumstances" with the death.  The department is investigating the case as a homicide.

Deputy Chief Ben Bliven tells Newswatch 12 police do not have any suspects under arrest as of 12:50 p.m.  Bliven also did not release how the man died.

+ Read More

WISCONSIN - Wausau community leaders hope a bill will stop anything like last March's shooting spree from ever happening again.

It's expected the Wisconsin State Assembly will vote on 'Sara's Law' Tuesday afternoon. 

+ Read More
+ More General News

Click Here