Oneida County court reporter holding free class to get more interested in fieldSubmitted: 09/14/2017
Lane Kimble
Lane Kimble
News Director

Oneida County court reporter holding free class to get more interested in field
RHINELANDER - Lynn Penfield sits in a courtroom every day listening and typing.  The Oneida County Branch II court reporter considers it the best job she's ever had, and she wants to get more people interested in her field.

Penfield will help teach a six-week court reporter course starting next month. It's part of a nationwide program called "A to Z," which is spearheaded by the National Court Reporters Association.

Anyone in the Northwoods who is interested in learning more about court reporting can sign up, although you should at least be a junior or senior in high school.

"Even though we live in the Northwoods, there's a lot of opportunities for court reporters and, unfortunately, we don't have enough court reporters," Penfield said.

Penfield says there are eight openings statewide for reporters right now, but it's not an incredibly popular field, and one many don't even think about unless they're in court.

"Otherwise you don't run into us anywhere, so I just think it's kind of fallen off the radar for people," Penfield said.

The course will teach some of the basics: keyboard layout, finger positions, and some simple phrases. Penfield says anyone who takes the course will have a leg up to getting their degree. The class enrollment will be capped at 10 students.

Penfield says the verbatim logs that court reporters draft and save help ensure our legal system is fair.

"It really is kind of the cornerstone of the judicial system, to be able to have that appeal process," Penfield said. "And so, this is how you appeal things: you order transcripts and the Court of Appeals reads the transcripts. It's the only way they know what happened at trial or whatever it may be."

The class is free and runs on Tuesday nights from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. starting October 17. To sign up for the course, email wicourtreporters@gmail.com.

You can learn more about the field via the link below.

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RHINELANDER - This time of year, winter activies start to wind down and the summer fun hasn't quite started yet.

That's why Fisher's Resort and Bar on Lake George in Rhinelander enjoys having it's annual ice golf tournament each year.

"In year's past, March is always kind of a slower season up here in the Northwoods so we figured we'd create an event and put efforts towards a local organization," said Fisher's Resort and Bar owner, Russ Fisher.

That local organization they raise money for is the Hodag Sno-trails snowmobile club.

This year, the tournament had it's biggest turn out.

30 teams came to play, including first timer Dennis Herrmann who lives right across the lake.

"This has nothing to do with golf, I can tell you that right now. But it's a challenge for all the obvious reasons. But you do it for the charity, you do it for the fun and it gives everybody the chance to get out," said Herrmann.

This year they cut it down from 18 holes to 13 so people could get inside faster to enjoy the chili and the raffle items after their round of golf.

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WAUSAU - When you think of Wisconsin, two things might come to mind - beer and snow. 

The Granite Peak Ski Area in Wausau decided to combine the two and host an annual brew fest. 

Andy Ledesma is the head brewer at Red Eye Brewing Company in Wausau. The Granite Peak Brew Fest is one of the many perks of his job.

"No other beer fest is like this, that's for sure," said Ledesma.

He definitely wasn't alone serving more than 40 beers on Saturday. 

Jeff Geurink works for South Shore Brewery in Ashland. They've been around for 20 years, but they wanted to make this brew fest a part of their line up.

"Get our name out there and make sure people are enjoying our beer and get as much information as possible out about our brewery so then when they go out and get a beer, they remember us," said Geurink.

Something everyone will remember from the brew fest was the set-up.

"Snow bar?! You can't get that in the summer time," said Roland Bruhnke.

He's right. Most beer festivals are in the summer. But when it's still feeling like winter in March, Granite Peak turns lemons into lemonade, or more appropriately, hops into beer.

"I think it definitely helped that when they get to the bottom of the hill, you see a bunch of beer," said beer salesman Jesse Bartnik.

So even though beer and physical activity isn't the best combination, dozens of people were loving it this weekend.

"The winter, the skiing, the beer, it's all one big package all rolled into one," said Bruhnke.

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RHINELANDER - The warmer weather might have you spending more time outside with man's best friend.

But the remaining snow and ice could increase the risk of injury for dogs.

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ANTIGO - "It did come as a shock at first, but it's something that you realize it's not the end of the world," said Tracie Quade. 

Quade's 18-month old son, Benny, was diagnosed with Down syndrome when he was born.

"It's actually a really, really awesome thing. People with Down syndrome are wonderful loving people and they are just as capable of doing as much as anybody else," said Quade.

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PORTAGE COUNTY - Portage County will hold an information meeting to share information about a sexually violent offender that will soon be released.

Gregory Loomis, 43, sexually assaulted two children in 1988 and 1992.

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The Crandon School Board voted unanimously Friday evening to change the wording of superintendent Dr. Doug Kryder's absence from the district.

Kryder is now on "paid administrative leave." Originally, he had been "suspended with pay."

The board said it made the change based on advice of its lawyer. The board met for two and a half hours in closed session on Friday.

Kryder is under investigation by the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office.

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EAGLE RIVER - Kids face bullying in schools all the time.

That's one reason why the Eagle River elementary school holds its annual Great Kindness Challenge Week.

It's part of a nationwide challenge involving nearly 10,000 schools.

This year's kindness week in Eagle River wrapped up Friday with a musical assembly with Dave Dall.

Throughout the week, students were challenged to do random acts of kindness.

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