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A Forest County casino made holiday miracles come early this year for local charitiesSubmitted: 12/09/2019
Zack White
Zack White
Reporter
zwhite@wjfw.com

A Forest County casino made holiday miracles come early this year for local charities
CRANDON - The holiday season came a little early this year to charities in Forest County.

A team from the Potawatomi Carter Casino Hotel delivered toys and essentials to charities around Crandon.

Donated toys went towards the Associated Banks Giving Tree Program.

A spokesperson from the bank gave a statement on behalf of the donation.


"Associated has been a coordinator and sponsor of the Giving Tree since it began in 1994," the statement said. "We are proud of our friends, neighbors, and colleagues in Crandon who willingly donate toys to children in need, it is exciting to see the increase in donations year after year."

The group not only donated toys but bought supplies from Schaefer's Market to donate to other charities and non-profits around Crandon.

One of those organizations is the Forest County Humane Society.

Humane Society director Angie Schaefer said it makes her feel good to know the community supports their cause.

"It just makes you feel good that you know the generosity of people and humanity that they're thinking about you," said Schaefer.

The group also donated food and hygiene items to NEWCAP.

Marketing Director Petra Nielson said she appreciates the generosity of her team and their efforts.

"To see this kind of generosity, above and beyond what's been shown to me personally, makes me even that more proud and humbled to work for such a great organization and a great tribe," said Nielson

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Farm adapts to COVIDSubmitted: 09/24/2020

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MERRILL - Grampa's Farm in Merrill like a lot of businesses have had to adapt because of COVID.

"We've expanded our hours and we've expanded our play areas to include more things and outdoor space," said Jered Severt, operator at Grampa's Farm.

But change is something that Severt and his family are used to.

"The dairy industry just wasn't working out for the smaller farmer," Severt said.

Severt and his family have had their barn for over 100 years.

"When I was born I came back to this farm," Severt said. "When my father was born he came back to this farm. My grandfather and his father and the previous father have all worked the soil here and have been a part of Grampa's Farm."

And without all the help from his family and friends, he knows none of this would be possible.

"It still continues to be family run but friends and neighbors," Severt said. "A lot of people working together to make this happen for a lot of other people." 

For more information on Grampa's Farm check out their website.

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RHINELANDER - The roundabout at the intersection of Highway 8 W and Highway 47 was pretty controversial a year ago; a lot of people didn't like it.

Oneida County Highway Commissioner Bruce Stefonek says the change caused controversy in the city.

"We had numerous meetings with the public and it was somewhat divided," said Stefonek.

Except now Stefonek says people have come around to accept the city's first and only roundabout.

"A number of people that were against it before now like it," said Stefonek.

Although the stoplight and 8 & 47 was familiar to people, it was also dangerous.

"There were a lot of accidents, it almost felt like they were weekly," said Stefonek.

He saw cars speeding through the intersection in order to beat other traffic.

"It was almost like a racetrack coming through the intersection," said Stefonek.

The roundabout was installed in August of 2019. Since then, there have been very few accidents.

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- Park Falls Police Department is investigating two incidents when a man approached middle school boys earlier this month. It's an incident that the City of Park Falls Chief Jerome Ernst says he has not experienced in the last 30 years.

"This type of report is very rare for us, but you see these types of things happen. You now all over the place, Park Falls is not exempt.," Ernst said.

Ernst says back on September 8th, a middle school cross country runner was approached by a man after his practice near Chequamegon High School in Park Falls. The man told the boy that he was from 'Up North', and was asking for help to find the hospital. The second incident occurred on September 16th, when a man matching a similar description was seen on Saunders Avenue in Park Falls near Hines Park. When he approached two boys who were also in Middle School.

"The person only stated 'Do you want to race', and the kid just kinda ignored him, because he is a stranger, and he wasn't comfortable about it," Ernst said. "The other child however, tells us that the person said, 'Do you want to race me to my house. If you win I'll give you some prize or treats', Something like that," Ernst said.
Then last Friday a man matching a similar description was also seen in Wausau. According to a Facebook post and video posted online, he was accused of watching a group of girls.
"The description of the individual, looks a little bit like the person in the video. Although it's hard to tell because the videos are a little bit shaded and dark. The vehicle is definitely not the same like it is in Park Falls," Ernst said.
However, Park Falls and Wausau Police Department are partnering up to see if the incidents may be connected.
Even if the cases are not connected, Ernst says it's a good reminder of stranger danger.
"If you are going out to play or do things or walk over to the park, stay in groups with your trusted friends or family. Talk to them about stranger danger. Not to immediately trust, a new person or strange person," Ernst said. 

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