Community

Sat
03
Dec

Nonprofit Profile


Photo by Carol Wagner Terry Moede is the coordinator of Toys for Tots in Shawano County.

Around 13 years ago, current Chief of Police Mark Kohl started a Christmas crusade to collect toys for kids and then deliver them to families in a squad car.

At the time, Herb and Marisa Rycroft, the Shawano United Methodist Church and the Shawano Area Food Pantry and Resource Center collected the toys. Now toys are collected through the Toys for Tots campaign.

“Everything we get is funneled through them,” said Terry Moede, coordinator of the drive for the last three years. “All our donations stay here.”

The Toys for Tots program joins forces with the Shawano Police Department, SAFPARC and Safe Haven to ensure toys are provided for children from birth to 15 years old.

“There’s a lot of families where that’s the only gifts they get,” Moede said.

There are 65 collection boxes throughout Shawano County for new, unwrapped toys. For the last two years, the Shawano Area Young Professionals have distributed and picked up the boxes.

Sat
03
Dec

Volunteer Profile


Photo by Carol Wagner Pam Moede does a lot of volunteering and makes up-cycled items to donate to benefits.

Pam Moede does a lot of volunteering, including making up-cycled items she donates to benefits.

Moede was born in Nichols and graduated from Seymour High School. She worked in the bakery in Black Creek and then was a Home Interiors sales representative for 25 years. She continued her education through Home Interiors to recruit and train sales people for the company. Now she works for Sorge CPA during the tax season.

Moede was a single mom to her son, Justin, until she met her husband, Terry. They have been married 18 years and live in the town of Wescott. When not volunteering, the couple enjoys camping.

She makes up-cycled items to sell on consignment at ‘Til the Cows Come Home in Shawano.

Q Where do you volunteer?

Sat
03
Dec

Computer issues take a byte out of the week

Warning: do not believe everything you see or hear, especially if it appears on your computer screen.

On Nov. 23, as I sat down at the computer for a few minutes rest, a frightening thing appeared on the screen. Instead of a few senseless minutes on Facebook or the more challenging FreeCell game, I saw, Microsoft, and lockdown, and do not use your infected computer.

Instead of stopping and thinking, and understanding that this was a scam, or to figure a way to check it out, I called the phone number that appeared on the screen. Had I not been harried in Thanksgiving preparation, had I not been seeking an immediate relaxing moment, I do not believe I would have called. But I did.

Fri
02
Dec

Christmas Bird Count set for Dec. 17

The annual Shawano Christmas Bird Count will take place from sunrise to sunset Dec. 17.

Bird watchers in the communities of Shawano, Bonduel, Adams Beach, Cecil, Belle Plaine, the Navarino Wildlife Area and the north shore of Shawano Lake will observe, identify and count birds of all kinds at feeders and along roadside fields. Several people will drive and hike in rural areas and along streams and lakes to observe and count birds.

This year will be the 117th Christmas Bird Count sponsored by the Audubon Society. The event is open to anyone interested in observing and counting the birds in their area, whether it is at a feeder in the backyard or traveling the countryside.

Anyone who has a birdfeeder can participate in the count by simply recording the numbers and types of birds that visit their feeders.

To sign up or for information, contact Navarino Nature Center at 715-758-6999 or navarinonc@gmail.com.

Fri
25
Nov

Arts council presents holiday show


Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Christmas carolers, played by, from left, Crue Pederson, Aiden Winn and Mason Winn, walk into Ebony Scrooge’s office in a scene from “Ebony Scrooge.” The show’s cast includes participants in the summer theater workshop and the Box in the Wood summer musical “Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland.”

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Mielke Arts Center.

If you’re uncertain about that, just look for little carolers and a miserly woman named Ebony.

The Shawano County Arts Council will present “Holiday at the Mielke” on Dec. 4 for one performance only. The show includes the one-act play “Ebony Scrooge,” along with a number of acts with a holiday theme.

Mary Madsen, president of the arts council, is directing the play. She said the idea for doing a one-act as part of an overall show came about after the council organized a shorter skit years ago involving the children from the annual summer theater workshop. The cast for “Ebony Scrooge” consists of actors from this year’s workshop, as well as performers from the summer musical, “Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland.”

Fri
25
Nov

Nonprofit Profile


Photo by Carol Wagner Jane Melchior is the coordinator of The Giving Tree at St. Martin Catholic Church in Cecil.

Jane Melchior is the coordinator of The Giving Tree at St. Martin Catholic Church in Cecil. She moved here 11 years ago and started to help.

“As it grew, I stepped in,” she said. “It became a community event.”

Now First State Bank in Cecil, the Men’s Club at the church, WTCH and WOW radio stations, and various other businesses and private parties all help out.

“We were too small to handle the number,” she said.

A tree at the bank and a smaller one at the church are decorated with ornaments that list the gender and age of children, 14 and younger, in need of Christmas gifts.

As a former kindergarten teacher, she is sensitive to the needs of children. This year, 135 children are enrolled.

“It’s for anybody in the area,” Melchior said.

The names come from the people who use the St. Martin Food Pantry. They start enrolling their children in September and October by filling out a form with age, gender, size and wish list.

Fri
25
Nov

Volunteer Profile


Photo by Carol Wagner Paul Sheridan is the coordinator of the St. Martin Food Pantry in Cecil.

Paul Sheridan is the coordinator of the St. Martin Food Pantry in Cecil. He is a native of Detroit, Michigan, graduating from Cherry Hills High School.

Sheridan enlisted in the Air Force for four years. He was an air traffic controller and then did the same work as a civilian. For 40 years he was at airports across the United States, retiring in 2013.

Sheridan and his wife, Donna, also retired, have been married 22 years and live on the north side of Shawano Lake. They have two children and four grandchildren. Sheridan is a part-time handyman at Chaps Academy in Shiocton. The couple enjoy sports and the lake.

Q How long have you helped at the St. Martin Food Pantry?

A “For a number of years I volunteered, and now I’m the coordinator.”

Q Where do you get the food?

Fri
25
Nov

With a thankful heart

What a difference a year makes. Without the cows, we are experiencing a totally different life. I have always appreciated how hard a farmer works, and because I was living it, I never thought I could take the liberty to say, “Oh, man, we work hard.” Now that the cows are gone and I know farmers (and their hard-working wives) are still at it, I can give them kudos.

I’ve come to understand just how exhausted we were. We were living life tired these last couple of years, physically stretched and mentally worn out. Everything was starting to ache. Physically, because I was daily working those same muscles, it was taking its toll on my body. And my husband’s. For us, it was time to let the cows go, and with a thankful heart I’ve found how blessed and fortunate we were; the timing was perfect for us.

Fri
25
Nov

Into the basement instead of the store

Now that the turkey is reduced to leftovers, it is time to wrap our minds around Black Friday shopping. Now, you might be one of those shoppers, but not me.

I can remember years past when I had children in school and we often did go shopping on that weekend. After all, the kids didn’t want to miss school, so weekend shopping it was.

At this time I can’t recall all of this Black Friday shopping hoopla. I can’t quite remember when it began, but the stores seem to go all out.

From shoppers I have listened to, those deals are often to hook you into the store, and they either run out of the items advertised, or other such disappointment. Plus, the knowledge that people get up in the wee hours of the morning just to go shopping, and then camp out until the store opens, is a bit off-putting to me.

Wed
23
Nov

BOUNTIFUL BLESSINGS

Thanksgiving is a special time of year as we pause from our daily routines to reflect on the things that are most important to us.

The Shawano Leader again asked three community leaders to share their reflections about the meaning of the holiday for our Thanksgiving edition. Their responses presented here share a simple but profound theme: People are what matter most in our lives — family, friends, teachers, mentors, co-workers, employees, neighbors, customers and sometimes strangers.

Thanksgiving provides us an opportunity to come together, physically and spiritually, to acknowledge the people who mean so much to us. We can set aside politics, rivalries and differences to celebrate community and togetherness.

We can reach out to others less fortunate to share a meal, as many area communities do, and fellowship.

Bountiful Blessings surround us each and every day. Please take time to reflect on those in your life on this special holiday.

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