Community

Sat
09
Mar

THE LENGTHY ROAD OF A DREAM


Contributed Photo Nikki Brooks shows off an application for Broadcast Music Inc., a company based in Nashville, Tennessee that bridges the gap between songwriters, businesses and organizations.

When Nikki Brooks was in school, she didn’t have many friends rooting for her when she pursued her musical passions.

Now, at age 40, the Clintonville High School alum is releasing her first album, “Good Luck Woman,” a labor of love more than five years in the making. Brooks said she’s an unlikely candidate for success, being a middle-aged, married mother of two without a big record label to promote her work in a time when younger stars are in the spotlight.

“I’m 40 years old. I should be washed up by now,” Brooks said in a phone interview Wednesday. “I don’t feel like it’s over.”

“Good Luck Woman” is an Americana album, with each song incorporating different styles. Brooks said there are songs that are jazz, 1950s and 1960s, Christmas, bossa nova, contemporary Christian, gospel and, of course, country.

Sat
09
Mar

Countless memories crammed into tiny, one-room schoolhouse

“School days, school days, good old golden rule days.” That ditty has been bouncing through my head recently. Perhaps it is because I ran across an old picture from the Marion Advertiser that appeared on March 4, 1993. It shows all of the students of Excelsior School, town of Larrabee, Waupaca County, with the teacher, Mrs. Gertrude Brietenfeldt. She is standing by a window, and all of the students are seated in desks.

I am not sure what year the photo was taken, or what grade I was in. Most of the students have some sort of smile. But not me; I am staring stoically into the camera. That one-room school was scary to me. The older students would tease me, and while they probably didn’t mean anything, I was shy and scared. I did have my brother as a buffer for me, and that helped.

I am not quite sure what happened to that shy, quiet girl. Grew up, I suppose — although, I can still be shy and quiet in a room full of strangers.

Sat
09
Mar

Shawano was busy community in early 1900s

I appreciate the positive comments regarding recent articles about our area’s history, as well as the related information some of you sent me. A special “thank you” to Shirley Ponschok for gifting me with her late husband Fred’s books containing area history. He was a wonderful man, fellow elected official and good friend. I will forever treasure his memory and his books.

Due to the interest, I will continue to write a few more articles about the late 1800s and early to mid-1900s. I plan to include history about surrounding towns and villages.

Sat
09
Mar

Doctor visits support wellness goals

The beginning of the year often brings with it renewed commitments to health-related goals, so now, a few months into the New Year, it’s a good time for people to make an appointment with a primary care provider as a part of their overall wellness plan.

Wellness appointments are an important way for patients to talk with providers about health concerns, to stay up-to-date on needed medications and for providers to discuss with patients the importance of preventive medicine and healthy lifestyles.

“We want to talk about the things they can do to help prevent health problems,” said Dr. Steven Rasmussen, a family medicine physician at ThedaCare Physicians-Ripon. “An important one is making sure that people are up-to-date with their screenings to help with early detection of significant diseases.”

Fri
08
Mar

Local ThedaCare named a top critical access hospital


Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Julie Chikowski, left, vice president of ThedaCare critical access hospitals, looks over some results with Kim Rank, center, a registered nurse for the medical and surgery departments, and Paula Allen, a quality coordinator for ThedaCare. ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano was recently named one of the top 100 critical access hospitals in the country.

More than three years after opening its new hospital facility, ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano has been named one of the top 100 critical access hospitals in the country by the Chartis Center for Rural Health.

It was an honor that came as a pleasant surprise to Julie Chikowski, ThedaCare’s vice president for critical access hospitals, but it’s an honor she expects her 278 employees to maintain year after year. There are 1,348 critical access hospitals in the United States, so being in the top 100 puts the local medical centers is quite the feather in ThedaCare’s cap.

Chartis uses a 100-point system to look at a number of different aspects of hospitals — market shares for inpatients and outpatients, financial stability and value in quality, outcomes, patient perspective, cost and charge — and comes up with a quality rating. ThedaCare-Shawano received a 96.9 overall rating.

“We’re very, very excited about that. It’s huge,” Chikowski said.

Fri
08
Mar

North Star casino to sponsor tall ship

The Barque Picton Castle will join the fleet of ships at Nicolet Bank Tall Ships festival this summer in Wisconsin. It is a three-masted tall ship based in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, and is best known for its adventurous sail training voyages around the world.

The Tall Ships festival will start with a Parade of Sail in Green Bay from July 26-28, followed by a sail through Sturgeon Bay on July 29 and a sail past Algoma on July 30. The World’s Largest Rubber Duck will join the festival’s nine historic vessels — including the Picton Castle, which is being sponsored by North Star Mohican Casino Resort.

The festival, which will take place at Leicht Memorial Park in Green Bay, will also feature food and beverage vendors, a marketplace, children’s area, live entertainment and fireworks.

Tickets for general admission, all events and excursions will go on sale March 15 at tallshipswisconsin.com.

Fri
08
Mar

Livestock owners must register location by July 31

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, in partnership with the Wisconsin Livestock Identification Consortium, is reminding anyone who owns livestock to register the location where animals are kept. This is referred to as premises registration.

Whether you have one animal or thousands, and regardless if your facility is required to be licensed, state law requires any location that keeps livestock to be registered with DATCP. There is no cost to register, and the information you provide is confidential. The department uses the information to rapidly respond to animal disease outbreaks in order to protect animal health, the food supply, public safety and Wisconsin’s agriculture economy.

Thu
07
Mar

Proposal would change rules for veterans’ care

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is proposing new guidelines for veterans’ community care, and public input is being sought.

The proposal would change access standards in drive time and wait time for veterans seeking health care services, whether within the VA or with community providers. If veterans do not live near a full-service VA facility, for example, or are being asked to wait several weeks for an appointment, the proposal would help determine when those veterans could seek care with a different provider.

“Our medical services must meet our veterans’ needs,” said Robert Wilkie, VA secretary, in a statement earlier this year. “With VA’s new access standards, the future of the VA health care system will lie in the hands of veterans, exactly where it should be.”

Thu
07
Mar

Physicians encourage colon cancer screening

Cancer of the colon or rectum is the third-most common cancer in the U.S. and the second-leading cause of cancer deaths for men and women, according to the Centers for Disease Control. It is also one of the most preventable and treatable forms of cancer, if caught early.

“Regular screenings are the key to catching colorectal cancer early,” said Dr. Michael Williams, of ThedaCare.

In honor of March being National Colorectal Cancer Awareness month, the public is invited to an informational session Thursday in the Wolf River Room at ThedaCare Physicians-Shawano, 100 County Road B. “Cookies and Colons” will start at 5 p.m. Williams and fellow family medicine physician Dr. Benjamin Schlais will present information about colon cancer and colonoscopies, and staff from ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano’s Surgery Center will also be on hand to answer questions.

Sat
02
Mar

Will March’s early roar mean spring is soon at hand?

It’s March today, and woe is me, is that snow I see? I was not looking for that lion, but let it roar, because that means, according to lore, that it will go out like a gentle lamb.

January ended in a deep freeze, and I was looking forward to the shorter month of February, ready to fall in love by the 14th, with the longer days and warmer temperatures. So far, the only thing short is the sunshine and warmth. We certainly have had no shortage of snow.

Snowmobilers might be enjoying it, I, personally, enjoy the pretty scenery it presents, but there is not much else to recommend, except it’s not ice. That ice is not nice. It formed on parking lots, driveways and roadways last weekend and has turned all surfaces into skating rinks. With the cooler temperatures, it will take some time and warm sun to make it safe to walk on. I will admit, the longer days are nice, and the sun, when it shines, has some warmth.

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