Hatchet Pride Project raising funds for Tomahawk football field, track upgradesSubmitted: 01/21/2020
Stephen Goin
Stephen Goin

Hatchet Pride Project raising funds for Tomahawk football field, track upgrades
TOMAHAWK - A track and football field at one Lincoln County high school haven't seen many renovations in the past half-century. According to coach Andy Peissig, those facilities will change in a big way this summer. 

"Athletic field, the track and the bleachers - they're all going to be replaced," said Peissig

Peissig says the push to renovate those facilities started three years ago. In 2017, the Tomahawk School District approved a four-year referendum that increased the district's revenue limit by $3 million a year. Peissig said officials within the district realized there would not be enough funding through the referendum to renovate the track and football field.

"So a group of community members got together and started talking about how we can make this a privately funded process and give our kids something they can be proud of," said Peissig. 

According to plans on the Hatchet Pride Project website, site improvements will manifest in four areas: the field, the track, the bleachers and the facility entrance. Peissig said all the upgrades share an important objective. 

"Ultimately the number one goal is to make safety for our spectators and our athletes a much higher priority," said Peissig. 

Through renovations starting in May, the field's existing grass will be replaced with turf to even the surface. A community multi-use field will also be created to the northeast of the field.

The wrap-around track will be relaid while the triple jump/long jump and pole vault areas will be relocated. 

The renovated bleachers will be able to seat 1,000 people and have space underneath for a concessions stand and additional storage. The new bleacher structure will also be code compliant and handicap accessible.

The proposed upgrades are set to cost $2.25 million; more than $1.9 million has come from large private donations. The Hatchet Pride Project now hopes the community will invest the remaining funds needed to keep the project entirely privately funded. 

New varsity football coach Sam Hernandez hopes the public will be as exited for the upgrades as his students.

"Well the kids are excited, they like the idea of playing on synthetic turf, they like the idea of playing on something new," said Herenadez.

With a new field under their feet, Hernandez said the Hatchets will better suited for next season and students will gain a greater sense of pride in their school and community.

"To be able to rival that experience that other schools have is something that makes our kids proud of Tomahawk and Proud to be hatchets," said Hernandez.

Renovations at Hatchet Field are expected wrap up in early September.

If the Hatchet Pride Project exceeds its financial goal, the school's softball field may also get an upgrade.

To donate, or just learn more about the project, visit the Hatchet Pride Project website

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com


Play Video

ANTIGO - What starts with a tumble, ends in neatly packed, ready-to-ship bundles in the Kretz Lumber warehouse. Twenty percent of it will go across the ocean to China, with tariffs tearing into the profit.

"Twenty-five percent of our sales to China was reduced and we still have the same amount of overhead that you have to cover no matter what the price is," said Troy Brown, President of Kretz Lumber.

Though China's tariffs will be gone Friday, Brown says the foreign timber market is much different now from a year and a half ago.

"When their sheds are full of lumber from other countries it takes a while to empty those sheds out and start filling them with U.S. hardwoods," said Brown.

So even without tariffs, Brown wants some relief funds.

In a recent Farm Relief Package through the United States Department of Agriculture, dairy, soybean and other farmers received federal aid. But hardwood tree farmers got nothing.

"We support the Trump administration in the trade war 100 percent," said Brown. "But if the government is offering relief, you want to raise your hand as an industry and for your partners in the industry to say 'hey, what about us.'"

Brown also said he can't rely on the Chinese market right now.

"Everything we've been hearing is China has its problems," said Brown. "It's got coronavirus that everybody hears about. It's got an economy that hit a bubble and somewhat burst."

Brown hopes the Trump administration will include hardwood in the farm aid package, but isn't holding his breath.

"I am not expecting anything to come of this," said Brown. "I'd be highly surprised."

So Brown and others at Kretz Lumber will keep turning timber to lumber; hoping for a pleasant, unexpected surprise.

+ Read More

Play Video

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.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - The Northwoods is no stranger to heavy snow storms, but imagine having your driveways and sidewalks cleared - without ever having to touch a shovel.

+ Read More

ADAMS CO., IL - A school bus slid on snow and off the road then flipped onto its side in Adams county,  Illinois Tuesday morning.

Three students were on board. Two of them were taken to a hospital for an evaluation, but no serious injuries were reported.

+ Read More

MILWAUKEE - Twenty-four people associated with a violent drug trafficking gang operating in a northeast Milwaukee neighborhood face federal charges, authorities said Wednesday.

Hundreds of federal, state and local officers executed search warrants Tuesday and rounded up 17 of the defendants. The rest remained at large Wednesday, U.S. Attorney Matthew Krueger said.

+ Read More

MADISON - Republican legislators and their fundraising committees finished 2019 with four times as much money in their campaign accounts as their Democratic rivals, according to a review government watchdog group Wisconsin Democracy Campaign released Wednesday.

The review found that GOP lawmakers and their two legislative campaign fundraising committees - one for the Senate and one for the Assembly - ended the year with more than $6.3 million combined in the bank. Democratic legislators and their two committees finished with $1.6 million on hand.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Hardwood logging makes up as much as 10% of Wisconsin's agriculture exports, much of it sold to China.

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) says small logging businesses are at the heart of rural economies in her district and the lack of market stability is one of the main reasons for Wisconsin's economic downturn.

Today (Tuesday), Baldwin sent a letter to Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue demanding that the hardwood industry no longer be overlooked in the ongoing trade war.

+ Read More
+ More General News