Courier Press

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Mon
08
Jul

Hwy. 18 being resurfaced from Fennimore to the Wisconsin River Bridge


The repaving of Highway 18 from Fennimore to near the Patch Grove turnoff has been moving along quite well and is expected to be complete around the end of July. A second resurfacing project from near Patch Grove to the Wisconsin River Bridge is expected to begin in mid-August. (Photo by Ted Pennekamp)

By Ted Pennekamp

Motorists driving on Highway 18 in Grant County this summer will have to use caution when traveling through construction zones.

Highway 18 from Fennimore to near the turnoff to Patch Grove is being resurfaced and there is one lane of travel for much of the way. The lane is grooved so driving a bit slower than normal might be a good idea.

“The project from Fennimore to near the Patch Grove turnoff is moving along pretty well and, if the weather cooperates, should be complete around the end of July,” said Todd Waldo, Wisconsin Department of Transportation project manager.

Mon
08
Jul

Remodeled Aldi opens


Shoppers lined up in front of Aldi, stretching all the way down the building and back to the entryway to the parking lot, as early as 4:45 a.m. the day of the grand re-opening. (Photos by Correne Martin)

Employees and remodel administration posed for a ribbon cutting before opening the doors to customers June 27.

Store Manager Janice Polodna says hello to the people waiting in line.

The line inside the store went almost immediately to the sign-up for free groceries for a year.

Jennifer Struntz was one of the first customers to enter the newly-remodeled Aldi store in Prairie du Chien Thursday, June 27, at about 8:30 a.m.

One of the first shoppers entered a checkout lane.

All of the checkout lanes were full, but customers didn't have to wait long to get through and pay.

A happy customer heads out after getting what she needed,

Aldi is known for its speedy checkers, and that was no different the day of the grand re-opening in Prairie du Chien.

Janice Polodna greets customers.

Customers sign up for a year's worth of free produce.

By Correne Martin

Hundreds of anxious customers waited hours for the remodeled Prairie du Chien Aldi store to open Thursday. The first person actually started the line at 4:45 a.m., nearly four hours ahead of the grand re-opening celebration.

Following a giveaway of 100 golden tickets (gift certificates ranging from $5-100) and an official ribbon cutting around 8:25 a.m., the long line swarmed inside the shopping center to view its new look, browse the new products and shop for the first time since the store was closed in late May. 

Tue
02
Jul

Heavy rains lead to train derailment near Glen Haven


Emergency officials believe it was a mudslide or rockslide that caused a Burlington Northern Santa Fe train carrying empty semi trailers to derail south of Glen Haven the morning of July 1. (Grant County Emergency Managment photo)

Members of the Bagley Fire Department responded with their boat to help gather photos and assess the situation, so Grant County Emergency Management could determine whether there was a threat to people and assess the environmental impact. (Photo by Ron VanNatta)

Mother Nature unloaded on southwest Wisconsin Sunday. In addition to fierce winds, heavy rains hit the region. According to Grant County Emergency Management, some areas in northern Grant County received around 5-6 inches, even up to 8 inches in the Preston area. Tubes and shoulders were washed out, lots of debris and rock slid into culverts and some small mud slides occurred.

The most significant mudslide took place along the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) rail line running along the Mississippi River south of Glen Haven Monday morning. It caused a partial derailment of a train carrying empty semi trailers. The rail line and Glen Haven boat landing were temporarily closed, with the landing being used as a staging area for crews cleaning up damaged cars.

Tue
02
Jul

Mary Ann Dirksen

Mary Ann Dirksen, 77, of Eastman, passed away Friday, June 28, 2019, at the Bellin Memorial Hospital in Green Bay. 

She was born Dec. 24, 1941, in Sioux Falls, S.D., the daughter of Leonard and Rose Kelly. 

She married Elmer Dirksen on Feb. 7, 1957, in Bryant, S.D. Together they farmed in South Dakota, Iowa and Wisconsin. Mary Ann enjoyed sewing, quilting and was a great cook. She especially enjoyed raising and tending her peacocks. 

Elmer preceded her in death on May 19, 2016. 

She is survived by her sons, Gordon (Jen) and Matthew (Danielle) Dirksen both of Green Bay; her grandchildren, Aiden, Brooke, Dane, Brady and Justin (Missy); along with her great- grandchildren, Noble, Cadence and Landolin. 

Tue
02
Jul

Virginia M. Williams

Virginia M. Williams, 89, of Prairie du Chien, died Friday, May 24, 2019, at Clare Bridge (Brookdale) assisted living in La Crosse. 

Ginny was born July 8, 1929, to Dr. Henry and Florence (McIntosh) Gauger in Prairie du Chien. She graduated from Prairie du Chien High School in 1947.

Tue
02
Jul

Missing Iowa man located safe

Following an exhaustive search starting at around 8 p.m. on Friday, June 28, the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office announced the safe discovery of 56-year-old Mark Kloser, of Earlville, Iowa. 

Kloser walked from a family home near Edgewood, Iowa, at around 5 p.m. and was not immediately located by family. Search efforts lasted until around 3 a.m. on June 29, and resumed at around 6 a.m. Kloser was safely located at his home shortly after 2 p.m. 

Although the missing person investigation started in Clayton County, the search expanded into Delaware County, where the departments were assisted by countless agencies. The efforts of every agency and person involved assisted in the positive outcome and, according to Sheriff Mike Tschirgi, their action “is a true testament of the dedication of area emergency services personnel.”

Tue
02
Jul

Stark’s attempts world record: World’s largest Spotted Cow display


Randy Stark (right) and Stark’s Sport Shop salesman in the early 1980s, Bruce Hundt, stand in front of their World’s Largest Black Velvet display, which garnered the store a world record at the time.

A few happy customers take home some liquor from the display.

Stark’s Sport Shop in downtown Prairie du Chien put together a Guinness Book of World Records attempt at the world’s largest Spotted Cow display, which included 1,031 cases of the Wisconsin brew. It’s their understanding that the previous record was less than 1,000 cases. Staff sent photographic proof of the display to Guinness for consideration, which may take a couple months. Building the stacks of Spotted Cow inside the store took seven people an hour and a half Friday morning, June 28. The impetus for this throw-back display came from the family business’ world record for the largest Black Velvet display created in the early 1980s. This is Stark’s 75th anniversary year. Starting today (Monday), Stark’s is offering 30 giveaways for anyone who visits the enormous display and signs up. Pictured are Randy, Ron and Alex Stark. (Photo by Correne Martin)

Tue
02
Jul

PdC high schooler makes deep-rooted commitment to conaervation


Elizabeth Carlson (fourth from right) at the Kids for the Boundary Waters meeting with Sen. Tammy Baldwin. This organization was created to build a community of young wilderness advocates who are involved in the fight to defend the pristine waters, forest and wildlife of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.

Upcoming Senior Elizabeth Carlson stands on a frozen Big Donahue Lake, while at Conserve School in Land O’ Lakes in northern Wisconsin.

By Peyton Meisner

 

For Prairie du Chien High School senior Elizabeth Carlson, conservation plays a major role in her life.

In 2018, Carlson was accepted into Conserve School after a couple of rounds of interviews. The Conserve School is a semester school for environmentally and outdoor-minded high school students located in Land O’ Lakes, along the northern Wisconsin border with Michigan. She spent the first semester of the 2018-2019 academic year there.

While there, Carlson felt she picked up a new comprehension of conservation, “My entire class schedule was tailored to the environment. For example, in my English class, we read works from famous conservationists like Aldo Leopold and in my history class we learned about the history of conservation,” she explained.

Tue
02
Jul

La Riviere Park: Prairie du Chien’s hidden gem


This kiosk stands at the entrance of La Riviere Park and helps show visitors the extensive hiking areas.

By Peyton Meisner

 

La Riviere Park consists of 300-acres of land that features over six miles of excellent hiking trails and 50 plus miles of adjoining horse trails. The park is a mix of hardwood forest, grasslands and native prairies.

La Riviere Park was donated to the city of Prairie du Chien in 1977, by Dan La Riviere, as a public park and recreational area. 

La Riviere was born March 9, 1898, in a large two-story house in Bridgeport Township. The house was constructed by Hercules Dousman. When La Riviere was 6-years-old, his family moved to where the current park is located. In 1914, his father Solomon purchased an additional 140 acres, putting the total acreage of the farm at around 300.

La Riviere attended St. Gabriel’s School and then the public high school. 

Mon
01
Jul

Prairie du Chien American Legion baseball team to hold fish fry fundraiser Saturday


The Prairie du Chien Grasshoppers pose with their trophy after winning the Prairie du Chien Tournament earlier this season. Team members are, front row: Dylan Coleman, Zach Mara, John Nicholson, Tyler Smock, Clayton DuCharme, Gavin Gillitzer, Blake Bremmer and Grant Martin. Back row: Assistant Coach Bjorn Thompson, Assistant Coach Chas Sagedahl, Cory Check, Jacob Joy, Ryan McGrath, Conner Smith, Frank Cipra, Hunter Davis, Drake Coleman, Assistant Coach Tyler Wilkinson and Head Coach Nate Cejka.

 

By Ted Pennekamp

 

The Prairie du Chien American Legion Baseball program will be hosting a fish fry fundraiser the afternoon and evening of Saturday, July 6. 

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