MANITOWISH WATERS - A Manitowish Waters woman wants to change the look of the area's downtown.
Some local residents aren't thrilled with her plans.
The town used a forum to talk things out.
Newswatch 12 was there and talked with the town's supervisor.
"It's creating a lot of tension in the community. I think we have to find a way to fix it and to ease their feelings." said Manitowish Waters Town Board Supervisor, Eric Behnke.
Construction can cause tension.
You can find that feeling in Manitowish Waters.
One person in the community want to upgrade a local park.
But a good portion of the funding would come from a private donor.
"It's creating a lot of hardships, people are not happy about it and as a town we need to find a way to make this situation better." Behnke said.
Liz Uihlein owns businesses in the area.
She wants to change the look of the community and she could.
But the town hasn't approved her proposal.
That's why the chamber sponsored a town forum so people could talk and ask questions about the donations.
"Is there a process that you use to evaluate them? At what point do we say, you know, 'Too much of our budgets is these donations and it's not what we have funded'?" said town resident, Scott Bertz.
"As well as how much of this is the town's plan and how much of this is someone else's plan?"
But many of those questions don't have answers.
That's because donations don't need a vote by the town's people.
"Unfortunately with our policy, if it's a donation, some of the town board members can use that money without townsmen approval," Behnke said.
"I think that's what we need to focus on."
But the possibility of voting on donation spending is still up for question.
"The one thing we can do is be open and honest with people. We have to communicate with people about what's going on," said Behnke.
"If they don't have an opportunity to vote on these projects, then they really don't know about them. So I think it's our job to communicate with the people about what's happening and educate them on where the money's coming from and what it's being used for."
LAKE TOMAHAWK - All around you witness goodwill gestures. It could be as simple as a smile and wave or opening a door for someone. In Lake Tomahawk, it's making a pie.
"I made a pretzel crust with butter and sugar, " explains Sheila Punches. Sharon Hilgendorf adds, "Flour, for the thickening."
Snowshoe baseball's been entertaining crowds since the 1960's. But over at the concession stand, the pie takes center stage.
Strawberry rhubarb, banana butterscotch pie, blueberry pie, rocky road and coconut cream are just a few of the creations. "I like making ones that I think will appeal to the crowd," says Linda Penno.
Each week a different service club's in charge of the snack shack and in turn, takes home the proceeds. Locals bakers, a lot of local bakers make their best pies and donate them to support the cause.
"You get involved with it over the years and it just becomes your way of life on Mondays," says Punches.
On an average night they sell 80 pies. Each one is cut into six pieces and are only two dollars a slice. That means making almost a thousand dollars is easy as pie.
Ken Lochte of Rhinelander exclaims, "This is the only place you get your dessert first, before you get your food." "It's a great honor and pleasure and I've been doing it for quite a few years now," adds Rebecca Morien.
No matter how you slice it, everyone benefits from this unique fundraiser.
"It is unique and different which makes Lake Tomahawk special," says Morien. "It's a very good fundraiser for the community who in turn give it all back. So, it's kind of a domino effect you know," adds Hilgendorf.
If you think this is a lot of pies, the team is requesting the bakers provide double this Friday. They're hoping to have more than 200 pies for the Snowhawks game against the Wounded Warriors.
MADISON - Unemployment is up in all of Wisconsin's largest cities and most counties.
The state Department of Workforce Development reported Wednesday that unemployment rates in June increased in all of the state's 32 largest cities. Unemployment rates went up in 61 of 72 counties and remained unchanged in the other 11.
Wisconsin's monthly unemployment rate in June was 5.7 percent, unchanged from May.
RHINELANDER - You can expect to see a major reconstruction in Downtown Rhinelander in 2016. The downtown area will improve its look and layout through a "streetscape" project. The new look could include wider sidewalks, outdoor restaurant seating and parking changes on Brown Street, but before any of that happens, city leaders need feedback from their community.
Downtown Rhinelander Incorporated already had surveys filled out b businesses in the area about parking on Brown Street.
The construction company came up with a compromised solution. The proposal keeps Brown Street as a two way street, but there will be parallel parking on the west side and angled parking on the east side.
EAGLE RIVER - A new type of foundation could give you a better way to build a home, and the idea for the improvement starts right here in the Northwoods.
Composite Panel Systems in Eagle River builds composite panels for home foundations. Composite means anything made of two or more materials, which includes fiberglass in this case. The company describes the EPITOME Quality Foundation Wall as a revolutionary composite building solution for residential foundations.
The company makes them off site, and then they put them together on location. Composite Panel Systems' Scott Weber says that means a shorter build time compared to concrete foundations.
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