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Hodag Lanes Closing Submitted: 08/14/2020

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RHINELANDER - After over 50 years of staying open, Hodag Lanes in Rhinelander has officially closed its doors.

"I mean COVID has hit the bowling business really, really hard no matter where your bowling center is," said Sharon Cline, bowling manager at Hodag Lanes.

And with the construction on Stevens Street, the bowling alley was in a tough situation.

"The construction was also a big play for us because with all the construction out here it was tough for anybody to get through," Cline said.

A lot of memories were created in the bowling alley for various citizens in the city.

"I probably started bowling in the early '80s on the Wednesday night women's league," said Sherri Schilleman, Rhinelander resident. "We had the 9 o'clock slot I believe back then."

For her and many families in Rhinelander, bowling was very popular.

"Bowling is actually a big sport in Rhinelander," said Schilleman. "And I think in the last couple of years bowling was actually starting to make another comeback. So it's sad because people are gonna have to find something else to do."

But Cline is hoping that this won't be the end for Hodag Lanes.

"It is costly to have a bowling center but we're just hoping again that we can get up and running again," said Cline. 



Story By: Griffin Stroin

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 LOCAL NEWS

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MENOMINEE RESERVATION - A 2019 bill aiming to create a task force focused on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, or MMIW, failed to come up for a vote in Madison. Attorney General Kosh Kaul knows the issue is too important to public safety to do nothing.

"I think that this is too important an issue to wait for the next legislative session and then not be sure what's gonna happen so we went ahead and created this task force," says Kaul.

The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Task Force will bring together leadership from Wisconsin's 11 tribal nations, along with municipal, county, state, federal, and tribal law enforcement.

Their first priority is getting a firm grasp on just how bad this issue really is.

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WAUSAU -

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impact on many businesses. Even something as simple as networking with other business owners can be complicated. But, the Wausau Chamber of Commerce is trying to help. They've hosted their networking events for years, but since going virtual they've had to adjust to help local businesses stay on track.

"This desire was out there," said Chamber Marking Manager, Brian Otten.

There was a common desire among businesses to get back to normal and doing so meant making changes.


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- The Rhinelander school district announced today a blended reopening plan for the 2020-21 academic year. The blended option will include high school and middle school students attending in-person classes twice a week, with the remainder of the week being online. Meanwhile, K-5th will have a four day school week, with Wednesdays off for a school-wide cleaning. Despite the district's decision to offer partly online classes, not all parents are ready for their students to return back to the school hallways.

"We have to put health in front of money. we have to put health in front of other important things to make sure everybody is okay to continue to enjoy the things we like so much. and if this is just one way we can keep her safe and the family safe,..again we just decided as a family that's the best route for us," Rhinelander parent, Kate Bauman said.

For parents wanting an alternative option, they can sign up for the districts online option by tomorrow night, August 9th, 2020. 

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RHINELANDER - A lot of businesses have suffered because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Rarely do we hear about a business that benefited from more people staying home.

But Hanson's Garden Village in Rhinelander actually saw an outstanding season.

Sandy Lang of Hanson's Garden Village said the rush for vegetable seeds started soon after the rush for T.P.

"It was like the floodgates opened. And it's just now slowing down and this is almost the middle of august. That's unprecedented," said Lang.

And it's more than just vegetables. Perennials, annuals, and biennials have all sold well, even after a strange start.

"We didn't think we were going to be able to have the public on property this year," Lang said.

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 REGIONAL NEWS

MILWAUKEE -  Milwaukee's former police chief, who was demoted to captain in part for using tear gas against protesters demonstrating over George Floyd's death, has chosen to retire instead of staying with the department. 

The city's Fire and Police Commission voted unanimously last week to demote Chief Alfonso Morales.

 Commissioners criticized how Morales handled multiple incidents involving Black people, including the arrest of Milwaukee Bucks player Sterling Brown. 

Speaking Wednesday on WTMJ-AM, Morales said he's retiring because if he returned as a captain it would be at a reduced salary and would negatively impact his pension payments. 

Morales also defended his record as chief. 

His attorney says he and Morales are exploring a range of legal action, including filing a claim for damages.

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NEW ORLEANS - A federal appeals court in New Orleans upheld the constitutionality of the all-male military draft system Thursday, citing a 1981 U.S. Supreme Court decision.

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OAKLAND, CALIF. - Beginning Thursday, U.S. Facebook users who post about voting may start seeing an addendum to their messages -- labels directing readers to authoritative information about the upcoming presidential election.

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ESCANABA - Michigan officials are investigating a fish kill that affected a dozen species on the middle branch of the Escanaba River in the Upper Peninsula.

The die-off was reported Aug. 9 on the 52-mile-long river, which is popular with anglers, officials said Wednesday.

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