Rhinelander gets approval to move forward with softball complex planSubmitted: 06/12/2018
Story By Mark Spillane

Rhinelander gets approval to move forward with softball complex plan
RHINELANDER - People who want a softball complex behind Rhinelander high school recently moved one step closer to getting their wish.

Last week, the School District's Special Projects Committee approved a plan to build that complex.

Two softball fields will be placed near Mike Webster stadium behind the high school.

The Hodags varsity softball team currently practices and plays at Pioneer Park across town.

Rhinelander activities director Brian Paulson said that location will be perfect because it's so close to the new concession stand.

"Making everything in one location around a building that our building trades kids are putting together with our partners in the community. What a great asset to have, just to have one complex here for everybody to come to for Rhinelander athletics," said Paulson.

Paulson said based on funding, construction could start this fall.

After a years of construction, Rhinelander High School will also finally have access to a finished Mike Webster Stadium.

The stadium hosts Rhinelander football and soccer games as well as track meets.

Updates to the field and track have been completed and will be ready for use this fall sports season.

 Paulson said improving the drainage inside the stadium was a big part of the recent construction.

"Stage two of the football and soccer field was to raise the infield. There's been a lot of sand put in and the top soil put back over. We have drainage all around there now," said Paulson.

More construction needs to be finished on the new bathroom and concession stand building near the stadium.

Paulson said Rhinelander will host the boys soccer sectional final this fall.

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RHINELANDER - A man died after a house fire in Rhinelander on Friday night.

According to a press release from the Rhinelander Police Department, Rhinelander police and firefighters responded to the fire at 320 Rose Street near Hodag Park around 7:30 p.m.  

Firefighters went inside the house soon after they arrived and found an unresponsive man on the floor.  Firefighters and paramedics tried to revive the man, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

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THREE LAKES - After 30 years, Dr. George Karling decided it's time to retire as the Three Lakes District Administrator.

He plans to leave after the school year ends, but the school board is already preparing to find his replacement.

Early next month, the Three Lakes School District will host two input sessions for the public.

Three Lakes residents can go to give their opinions on what they want in a replacement. 

Karling's decision to retire comes about a month after he faced criticism for allowing the district to be featured in a campaign ad for Gov. Scott Walker. 

People who can't make it can still send their thoughts to the Three Lakes Board of Education. People can submit comments by writing to:

Board of Education, Three Lakes School District
6930 West School St. 
Three Lakes, WI 54562 

or email: tr@threelakessd.k12.us.

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RHINELANDER - A house fire in Rhinelander left one man dead Friday.

Emergency responders got the call around 7:30 p.m. for a home near Hodag Park.

Steve Smith heard a dispatch call over his step-sons radio about the fire at his neighbor's home on Rose Street.

"We walked out the front door and it was plain as day," said Smith. "The flames were rolling out of the front window."

At first, Smith wasn't sure if anyone was in the home. "There was a man they brought out," said Smith. "unfortunately, I heard he was deceased,"

Police Chief Lloyd Gauthier confirmed the victim was found dead on the scene.

"Life saving measures were done by the paramedics. Unfortunately, the male had passed away," said Gauthier. "At this point, it appears that it was due to something left on the stove."

Gauthier says more details about the victim will be released on Monday. 

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RHINELANDER - Kids ran throughout the Woodpecker Bar and Grill in Rhinelander on Saturday for the third annual Harvest Hoedown.

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WOODRUFF - Ascension Wisconsin Spirit Medical Transport hosted a fun-filled day for family and friends on Saturday.

This comes about five months after one of its helicopters crashed, killing three Spirit employees.

Regional manager Charles Kotke said those men were in mind today,

"Today is a day of bringing people together, as well as a celebration of our 25 year anniversary," said Kotke. "This team did an amazing job getting us back to caring for our patients and doing what we need to do to care of our community."

Flight paramedics showed off the aircrafts to people and the helicopter was a big hit.

"They definitely like to look at the aircrafts. See how we transport patients from point A to point B," said Northern Region Supervisor Ryan Short.

Next Saturday, Spirit is celebrating with more associates. The second part of the celebration will be in Stevens Point.

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