Risky racers take on the ice in Eagle RiverSubmitted: 02/26/2020
Story By Morgan Johnson

Risky racers take on the ice in Eagle River
EAGLE RIVER - The Subaru Winter Experience started three years ago in Eagle River.

It has everything a thrill seeker could hope for: fast cars, harsh weather, and beautiful scenery. 

That's why hundreds from all over the world make their way up to Dollar Lake in February.

Jake Alward -- owner of Chanticleer Inn -- has seen visitors from Texas, Flordia, Virginia, California, New York, Washington, Wisconsin, and Illinois.

Swedish organizers Patrik and Lienna Sandell originally started the ice-driving classes in Sweden and later brought the concept to America.

Patrik has spent most of his life racing on ice.

"This is how I grew up, driving cars on a frozen lake up there, and that then turned into a professional career, so I've been driving professionally since 2006," he said.

There are plenty of ways to get your adrenaline pumping. So what makes ice racing so special?

Patrik feels as though "It's impossible to not have fun when you drive a Subaru sideways on ice."

Students take 1, 2, or 3-day courses taught by DirtFish Rally School instructors or someone from Flatout Sweden, like the Sandells themselves.

Linnea Sandell was brought into the world of racing from her husband and says she found a new side of herself.

"To be able to push your limits and go over your limits is great, because I've never done that before. I definitely discovered a new side of myself," she said.

But the fun can't happen just anywhere. And everyone agrees that Dollar Lake is the perfect place for this kind of winter experience.

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JANESVILLE, WI - Authorities say two people have been hurt, including one with serious injuries, after a house exploded in Janesville.

Fire Department Battalion Chief Ron Bomkamp says that one tenant had smelled gas for a while and when another tenant lit a cigarette, the home exploded Monday night.

Firefighters responded about 9:15 p.m. after neighbors reported the duplex was on fire.

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TOMAHAWK - The 35-year-old Wausau man charged with the death of his friend pleaded guilty Tuesday morning.

Investigators said Charles Ramp, 52, was shot in his driveway Nov. 16, 2017. The suspect, Eric Moen, was arrested shortly after in Chippewa County.

According to court records, Moen pleaded guilty to one count of 1st-degree intentional homicide. A sentencing hearing is scheduled for September 2. The case had stalled due to Moen's competency.

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EAGLE RIVER - Graduating seniors would normally get their diplomas around this time of year.

Although COVID-19 has cancelled in-person ceremonies, school districts are finding clever ways to honor their graduates.

Northland Pines printed up a poster for every graduating senior in the class of 2020.

The district hung these posters in downtown Eagle River last week and they are now with students at home.

Although the grads are disappointed in the lack of a formal ceremony, they were happy to see their accomplishments recognized.

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NORTHERN WISCONSIN - May 26 marks the date Gov. Evers' "Safer at Home" extension was set to expire.

Although multiple businesses reopened within the last two weeks, many government buildings and local municipalities still remain closed.

Ten counties still remain locked down after imposing their own version of Evers' safer at home order. However, legal confusion follows shortly behind their decision.

The State Supreme Court's ruling left it up to counties and individual businesses on how to operate, with some guidance from places like the WEDC.

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FOX LAKE, WI - A physical therapist nurse on staff at Fox Lake Correctional Institution (FLCI) has tested positive for COVID-19.

At 8 am count this morning several residents who had been in contact with her were moved to the segregation unit for quarantine.

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RHINELANDER - The Rhinelander City Council has voted to cancel the 4th of July.

Alderperson Gerald Anderson put forth a motion to cancel the parade, but proceed with regular fireworks at Hodag Park while encouraging social distancing. It passed 5-3.

Alderpersons Thomas Barnett, Gerald Anderson, Andrew Larson, David Holt, and Ryan Rossing voted "aye".

Alderpersons Carrie Mikalauski, Tom Kelly, Eileen Daniel voted "nay".

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