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Wausau to get a women's softball team | The Weekly Wausonian
Wausau News for Dec. 8, 2022
If Wausau Woodchucks owner Mark Macdonald gets his way, Wausau could in 2024 be home to a women’s college summer softball team.
Macdonald says he wants to install AstroTurf at Athletic Park next year, leading the way to hosting a women’s softball team by 2024. The turf would also allow more games to be played by all of the teams that use the park, since the field turnaround time is much faster and requires less maintenance.
Macdonald says ESPN, which has broadcast a few Chucks games, is very interested in broadcasting softball from Wausau. And, women’s softball is a growing sport — far more people watched the women’s DI final than the baseball final, Macdonald says.
But, some are suspicious of installing AstroTurf at the park because of past links of artificial turf with PFAS. Macdonald says no PFAS is used in the manufacturing of the AstroTurf, which is higher quality than other turf manufacturers. He says he can obtain a letter certifying the turf as PFAS-free.
This past week saw The Wausonian’s open thread, as well as a story about a mom who discovered her child was transgender, and the challenges that brought. The point was to look at the issue completely outside of an ideological lens, and just see a story from the point of view of a mom just trying to figure out how to do right by her child. The story includes audio clips, a new feature for Substack and The Wausonian.
What else in Wausau?
Hospital overflow: Aspirus leaders say their hospitals and clinics are becoming overwhelmed with patients due to COVID-19, flu and RSV cases. That’s causing serious capacity concerns, hospital leaders say.
Riverlife Condos on ice: A planned condo project, the second phase of the city’s flagship Riverlife development, is officially on ice. The city’s Economic Development Committee pulled the plug on the deal after developers Viegut, Riveron and Ohde asked for numerous extensions on the project and removed a planning amphitheater that city leaders liked. The city council will still need to agree with the decision but that’s likely to happen. Most likely city staff will put out another request for proposals at some point.
School forest upgrade: Wausau School District officials broke ground on a new building at the Wausau School Forest, replacing an out-of-date building that’s made teaching at the forest a challenge. The building is the result of donations and money approved during the April 2022 referendum.
Library hours: A new partnership places the city’s Outreach Specialist working with the unhoused population in the library itself. Outreach specialist Tracy Rieger will hold office hours at the library on Mondays and Thursdays. Many of the city’s unhoused folks hang out at the library already. Rieger, who formerly worked at Catholic Charities which runs the city’s warming shelter, was hired by the police department in September to replace Eric Lemirand, who had held a similar role as a sworn officer.
Around the metro
Mosinee run: Mosinee Mayor Brent Jacobson announced recently that he will seek a third term in office. Jacobson says a lot has been accomplished in his eight years so far, including revitalizing Mosinee’s downtown and adding a downtown hotel, but that there is much more to do. Jacobson also served on the Marathon County Board and ran for state office a couple of times.
Through Sunday, Dec. 11: Coming right to Rotschild’s Convention Center are 80 of the top players in professional women’s pool. And you can go watch! This is the last stop of the professional calendar of the year, as these pros play a two-stage 9-ball tournament to wrap up the season. If you’re into pool this will be where you want to be this weekend. See the official Facebook event page for all the details and tickets.
Saturday, Dec. 10: You might know him from CASHED, Wausau’s favorite punk band with splashes of Jane’s Addiction flavor, but Chad O’Brien, who calls himself The Chad O’Kennedy for his solo act, puts on a pretty good show all on his own. He’ll play Bull Falls Brewery this Saturday, lending his musical talents to the tap room for a few hours in the afternoon. See the Facebook event page for more info.
Sunday, Dec. 11: Want to see the first-ever Christmas movie to be filmed in Wausau? Cedar Creek will host a second screening of The Big Gift this Sunday. Created by notable Wausau filmmaker Jarrod Crooks, The Big Gift tells the story of an out-of-work father who just wants one thing to go right in his life: he wants to get his son the perfect Christmas gift. But that darned Santa, played by a professional wrestler, wants the credit. Filmed in Wausau, Hudson and some other locations nationwide like Leavenworth, Wash., The Big Gift (Which your Wausonian editor helped out with) already sold out its first screening. Get in before the second screening sells out too.
Looking for kids/family events? Check out the family-oriented listing from The Wausonian’s partner Wausau Mama, who puts together a weekly listing of children/family activities.
Girls basketball: Area teams didn’t have the greatest start to the girls basketball season. D.C. Everest fell to Wisconsin Rapids 67-40, and Wausau East dropped a stunner to Stevens Point 80-20. Wausau West opens up its season Friday.
Boys basketball: The season opens Friday with D.C. Everest hosting Wausau East and Wausau West hosting Merrill.
Boys hockey: Wausau West is off to a dominant start again, taking out Marshfield 7-2 to remain 2-0 in the Wisconsin Valley Conference. The Warriors are currently tied with SPASH for first place, a common theme for the two rivals.
Girls hockey: The Central Wisconsin Storm are off to a strong start this season. The Storm are 4-1 so far, taking wins at the Gobbler Cup over Thanksgiving weekend and recently defeating Medford at home 5-0 Tuesday.
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