Nonprofit Profile

Photo by Carol Wagner Marla Sparks, corporate events director for the American Heart Association, is promoting Go Red Day in Shawano on Friday. She is holding a CPR kit.

February is American Heart Month.

Marla Sparks, of Shawano, is the corporate events director for the American Heart Association. She has made it her mission to educate women about heart disease. Right now Sparks is getting information out through the Go Red campaign.

“AHA allows me the opportunities to educate my family, friends and our community on cardiovascular disease, stroke, CPR, healthy eating and so much more,” Sparks said.

Heart disease takes the lives of more women than cancer, with 1-in-3 women in the United States dying from heart disease or stroke. That number can be changed by education and lifestyle changes.

“We’re trying to educate women how to prevent cardiac events,” Sparks said.

Go Red for Women is the American Heart Association’s national movement to end heart disease and stroke in women.


Sewing foray interrupts post-holiday cleanup

There is something about this time of year that seems to be in between. We are definitely in the throes of winter, although we have had warmer than normal temperatures of late. The Christmas season is definitely past, and yet there are remnants of it lingering in and outside of my house.

All of the outside decorations and lights are unplugged, but everything remains, as it is all frozen in, or the snow is too deep to retrieve it and the electrical cords.

My tree is still upstairs, although it has been removed of adornments and moved to a different location, so I can once again open the door to the patio. Now and then I have extras of bread or other treats that I throw out to feed the birds, or squirrels, whoever gets there first.


Movies, more at library in February

The Shawano City-County Library has a variety of programs for all ages, including several movies, planned for February.

The movies that will be shown are “Storks,” at 10 a.m. Feb. 4; “The Light Between Oceans,” at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 13; and “Sully” at 10 a.m. Feb. 25.

For children, Baby & Me will meet at 10 a.m. Tuesdays, Story Time at 10 a.m Wednesdays and Gather ‘Round at 10 a.m. Thursday. There will also be drop-in Make-N- Take crafts from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 4.

Teen Tuesdays will run weekly from 3-5 p.m. Programs will include Jenga, valentines gift box, tortilla day and ball shooter.

For adults, Needles ‘R Us will meet at 9 a.m. Fridays. The Twisted Colors coloring club will meet at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 20. DIY Crafts & More will meet at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 27 and will feature flannel coasters.

Learning Lab will offer two programs in February: Borrowing eBooks at 9 a.m. Feb. 2 and Genealogy Searching at 9 a.m. Feb. 9.


Soups help spice up Winter Whirl

Photo by Grace Kirchner Clintonville Rotary exchange student Benyapa Gangaketv, right, serves chili to Julius Budlow, of New Ulm, Minnesota, Saturday at the Tummy Warmer Chili and Chicken Soup Cook Off, held as part of the Winter Whirl celebration in Clintonville. The Rotary club’s chili placed first in the mild chili category.

The Tummy Warmer Chili and Chicken Soup Cook Off drew a good crowd to the Clintonville Recreation Center during the city’s annual Winter Whirl.

Here are the winners:

Mild chili: 1. Clintonville Rotary, 2. Terry McAuly and 3. Dick Gussert.

Hot chili: 1. Scott Brandenburg, 2. Charlie Bettin, 3. Dick Gussert.

Chicken soup: 1. John and Claire Ware, 2. Mike Baker, 3. Mary Tullberg.

Miscellaneous: 1. Jim Holbrock, 2. Ava Paulson, 3. Jenny Yagnow.

People’s Choice: 1. Ava Paulson, 2. Charlie Bettin and Terry McAuly.



Photo by Rob Zimmer Getting started in gardening has never been easier and now is the perfect time to research, plan your garden and purchase the best selection of garden seeds available.

Photo by Rob Zimmer Perennials are the favorite plants of many gardeners, for their bright colors, interesting textures and long life in the garden.

I often receive questions from people who are interested in getting started in gardening but feel overwhelmed and aren’t sure where to begin. As local garden centers begin to stock up on seeds and garden catalogs are arriving almost daily, we look for ways to spruce up our yards, patios and porches, grow our own food or begin to assemble a collection of our garden favorites.

This week, some tips to help get you started, whether your garden project is large or small.

Have a soil test done

One of the first questions many people ask is, what types of fertilizer or amendments should I put in my garden, on my soil or on my plants, long before the garden is even created.

My answer? None. Don’t even start thinking about fertilizers or amendments until you’ve had a professional soil test done. Too many gardeners are excessively over fertilizing garden beds and lawns. This has been shown in soil test samples throughout Northeast Wisconsin.


Leader of the Pack

Because the Packers are still in the hunt for the Super Bowl ring, from my headline one could assume I am speaking of Aaron Rodgers, and quite frankly, I joyfully am!

I began my article a few days before the Dallas game and as I was writing, was thinking of our Big Red here, totally immersed in his mischievous adventures on the farm, he and his cohorts. But when our amazing No. 12 led his Packers in a stunning, mind-blowing victory over the detestable Dallas Cowboys, I just had to include him in the title of Leader of the Pack!

The next day during all of the talking-head shows, we gleefully watched a dejected Jerry Jones discuss next year (Really? Poor guy, he has to wait a whole year) and remembered how unusually quiet Troy Aikman became as he realized Mason’s 51-yard field goal at the end of regulation just booted his precious Cowboys out of the playoff run.

Oh goodness gracious, how sweet it is.


Nonprofit Profile

Photo by Carol Wagner Caroline Bedroske, principal and executive director of Wolf River Lutheran High School, is looking forward to the new school that will be built this year.

Things are happening at Wolf River Lutheran High School. This is the year the new high school will be built.

“It’s really exciting to see everything going on,” said Caroline Bedroske, principal and executive director.

Bayland Builders is scheduled to begin construction of the school in April, weather permitting. Five classrooms, a gymnasium, offices and a commons/cafeteria will be constructed in the town of Belle Plaine along state Highway 29 just south of Shawano.

“It’s exciting to watch this community rally around the school and see how far it’s come and how far it will go,” Bedroske said.

The high school has been in the planning stage for several years. The school currently operates in a former grade school in Cecil that is now at capacity.

Enrollment has begun for the 2017-18 high school year. The school is open to students of all faiths.


Volunteer Profile

Photo by Carol Wagner Paul Schmidt is the vice chairman of Wolf River Lutheran High School.

Paul Schmidt is the vice chairman of Wolf River Lutheran High School. He was raised in Bonduel and graduated from Bonduel High School.

Schmidt started farming right after high school. He took a five-year farming course at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College and went to several cow college courses.

Schmidt and his wife of 30 years, Renee, own and operate Schmidt’s Ponderosa in the town of Hartland. They have three sons who are involved in the operation along with several employees. They milk 1,500 cows three times a day.

The Schmidt’s have six children and one grandson. Every year the family plans a vacation to visit other states.

Q How long have you been associated with Wolf River Lutheran High School?

A “It’ll be going on eight years. I‘m the vice chairman.”

Q What’s happening with WRLHS?


This winter has been anything but boring

This seems to be a winter to remember. Back in the old days, old folks would talk about certain winters when we were either snowed in or in a deep freeze.

I can remember years when the snow along the ditches of the roads was so deep that people put colorful things on the top of their car antennas so other cars could see someone was coming around the corner. This winter brought us to that point in the snowstorm on Jan. 10, but since cars don’t have antennas anymore, that is no longer possible.

Back in my childhood, I can remember snowstorms where the milk truck could not get through for days on end. We would have to round up odd containers to put the milk in until he could get there. School would be canceled for days on end, too, and when it started up, the banks along the ditch were almost up to the electric wires.


Clintonville exhibit includes ice shanty built in 1961

Contributed Photo This collapsible ice fishing shelter patented by Clintonville native John Schoenike in 1961 will be part of an exhibit at the Clintonville Historical Society during the Winter Whirl celebration Saturday.

The Clintonville Historical Society will display a 1961 fishing shanty during its open house from 12-3 p.m. Saturday during the Winter Whirl.

The shanty was constructed by John Schoenike, who operated a sporting goods store in Clintonville for many years.

Schoenike, who died in 1997, invented and patented the collapsible ice fishing shelter in 1961. The family built hundreds of the shelters and sold them in sporting goods stores from Clintonville to Milwaukee. When demand for the shelters exceeded their ability to fill the orders in a timely manner, Schoenike sold the patent to Frabill, which continues to make the shelters.

The exhibit will include an original model with the wood base/runners and canvas walls. Later models used a plastic sled in place of wood, making them lighter. Canvas cloth was later replaced with nylon fabric.


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