Weekly Wausonian | Storms wreak havoc on the Wausau area
Plus a new A Community for All resolution, new plans for a city-owned site, and more Wausau news for Aug. 5, 2021
A strong storm left many without power Thursday and Friday and took trees down all over the city.
The county’s emergency call center fielded 52 separate 911 calls and 448 events from 7 pm to 7 am Thursday morning, Communications Captain William Millhausen told The Wausonian. Lincoln County reported similar numbers.
WPS worked starting Wednesday night to restore power to 100,000 homes across its service area in Wisconsin, including hundreds in the Wausau area. Many on Friday were still without power on Friday.
Crews on Thursday hauled away some of the trees that fell in yards and the street.
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What else in Wausau?
Plans are being discussed with what to do next with 1300 Cleveland Avenue, a city-owned site that is environmentally contaminated. The city’s Sustainability, Energy and Environment committee discussed a number of possibilities such as parks or recreational facilities built on top of capped land similar to Marathon County Sports Complex, or a solar farm for the neighborhood. The committee would make a recommendation to a standing committee before being forwarded to the city council.
Aspirus Medical Group has completed its acquisition of several Ascension hospitals in northern Wisconsin and Upper Michigan. The acquisition will include seven hospitals, 21 clinics and ground and air transportation systems, as well as 2,700 employees.
Wausau’s Economic Development Committee passed a new version of A Community for All, called We Are Wausau. The resolution softens the language of the previous version, but further suggestions to gain buy-in by Lisa Rasmussen were rejected following a heated debate. Chair Tom Neal drew some rebuke for saying people who didn’t see the truth about white fragility shouldn’t have had children.
Around the metro
Marathon County is discussing becoming a constitutional sanctuary county. The resolution considered Wednesday by the county’s Public Safety Committee essentially says that the county can’t pass a resolution, ordinance or regulation that violates the constitution of the United States. Public Safety Chair Matt Bootz says the resolution is something constituents have been asking about so he put it on the agenda for discussion.
The Wausonian has requested an investigation report from attorney firm Von Briesen regarding now-former North Central Health Care CEO Michael Loy. The report was approved following a closed session of the North Central Community Action Program Board Thursday. Loy will have time to review the release as required by state law before the report is handed to the press. Loy resigned in late July after being placed on administrative leave in late May.
Stoney Acres apparently isn’t the only farm pizza in town. Rock Ridge Orchard in Edgar has been doing occasional pizza nights on Thursdays at its orchard outside of Edgar. Rock Ridge does it a little different: From 4-8 pm you can purchase a pass to their pizza buffet, not to mention their homemade deserts and salads that come included in the price of admission. Bluegrass band Thompson Station will play from 6-10. Comprised of a mix of old music pros and young up and comers, Thomas Station has a kick to them that you can’t miss. Pizza is $14 per adult, children 11 and under $5 cash bar is available, no carry-ins.
Yep, they’re a real Wausau-born band done good — indie band Windsor Drive will be taking the stage at the 400 Block for one of the last Concerts on the Square series, and it shouldn’t be missed. Started in Wausau in 2006 throwing their own shows in VFWs and bowling alleys, Windsor Drive moved to Texas, worked with an EMI producer to put out the release Meet the Tide in 2008. That led to several more albums and tours throughout the US, Europe and Japan. Windsor Drive has a very indie pop kind of sound that reminds one of the late 90s early 2000s, with just a little bit of bite to it. 6-8 pm, no charge.
The Sawmill Brewing Company is ordinarily a pretty chill place, but it’s about to get punked as three punk bands set their sites on the venue this Saturday. ThePunkRocketeer kicks things off with a blend of cover and original punk, followed by the emo-pop-punk band Wilted. Closing the show will be CASHED, with its modern-Jane’s Addiction-style punk. Taking that punk music and add some of the delicious and slightly dangerous brews on offer at Sawmill Brewing Company and it sounds like a recipe for one fun night. 7 pm, no cover.
The son of a former D.C. Everest basketball star was signed to a professional team during the NBA Draft last week. Jalen Johnson signed with the Atlanta Hawks Thursday night. Jalen’s mother, Stacy Johnson (then Stacy Letarski) was a standout on the D.C. Everest girls basketball team, though has since left the area. (CORRECTION: Corrected Stacy’s maiden name.)
Following on the heels of news that Wausau East is switching to eight-man football for the 2021-22 season, Athens announced that it is doing the same. Athens Athletic Director Craig Diedrich told WAOW that the move was a long time coming, and that enrollment in the sport had been in decline at the school for a few years. According to WAOW, Athens only had 16 students participate in summer football practices last month, down from 24.
A recent broadcast from ABC News about Hmong American gymnast Sunisa Lee, the first Hmong American to compete in the Olympics, included a lengthy segment on last week’s Hmong Wausau Festival. The festival saw record attendance of more than 14,000 people over the two-day weekend.
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