Jillian Dexheimer has been a copy editor and reporter for the River Falls Journal since 2011. She previously worked for the River Falls Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau. Dexheimer holds a sociology degree from UW-River Falls.
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Passersby may hear a lot of laughter coming out of the high school the night of Feb. 12. That is the night that 1983 RFHS graduate, Tom Steffen, and friends use their comedic skills to raise money for the RFHS band. Steffen, a professional comedian, will be bringing his comedy show back for a fifth year.
This year marks the 21st annual Westside Elementary School musical. Students, staff and parents will be presenting Pete's Dragon and The Aristocats.
Reduce, reuse and recycle -- we all learned about this in school. But what does it mean and how do we implement these ideas? The Sustainability Environmental Education Committee (SEEC) is seeking to answer these questions. As part of the school district's Strategic Plan, the SEEC, formed in March 2011, was asked to come up with a sustainability framework. The committee is made up of a diverse group including: the local school district, public-sector, private-sector and university employees.
Hollywood likes to sensationalize many things -- the Freemasons have been no exception. In movies such as National Treasure and The Da Vinci Code, the Masons have been portrayed as a group with deep, dark secrets. According to Freemason Steve Schwartz, this is not true. "We are not a secret society. We are a society with secrets." "The Masons, a fraternal organization, are much like other organizations, the inner group knows more," he said. During World War II, Masons were being persecuted by the Nazis and had to hide their status.
End of life choices are hard for anyone. Add in family disputes and they become nearly impossible. As of Jan. 1, local business, Shared Solutions, takes on this difficult task. Owned by River Falls resident, Kris Ainsworth, Shared Solutions is a mediation firm that specializes in elder mediation. "I have a strong passion to enable elders to have a voice," Ainsworth said. Ainsworth says her goal is to "allow them (family members) to think things through and process it.
At 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 24, in the lower level of the public library, Wisconsin native Jim Ryder will speak about his incredible journey to Nome, Alaska. In early 2011 Ryder traveled solo, by dog team, 800 miles from Nenana to Nome. His trip replicated the original Serum Run, which follows part of the Iditarod Trail. The Serum run goes along the same route that was taken by a sled-dog relay that carried the diphtheria antitoxin to Nome in 1925. One of 13 children, Ryder was born and raised in Eau Claire.
The lack of snow did not deter those at Saturday's Snowshoe Challenge, held at the Whitetail Ridge Corporate Park. According to Shelly Wilson, race volunteer, "The trails were slippery and many people used spikes on their shoes." The first male in the 5K was Scott Sekelsky of River Falls (24:04) and the first female was Taylor Heisleman of River Falls (26:48). In the 10K the first male was Kyle Donovan of Burnsville, Minn. (36:11) and the first female was Megan Westhoff of Hudson (46:35). See more in the print edition of the Jan. 5, River Falls Journal.
An organization calling itself U.S. Patriot Services may be unfairly targeting local elderly veterans and their families. Sales representatives allegedly go door-to-door, claiming to be selling caskets and funeral urns at a lower cost than local funeral homes. According to Scott Hill, owner of Cashman-Hill Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Inc., "The price is exorbitantly higher than ours." Hill also had an issue with U.S. Patriot Services claim that they buy the caskets and store them for you.
River Falls District 4 City Councilman, Bob Hughes is officially defending his seat. With two opponents in his way, Christopher Gagne and Ed Valle, a primary will be held on Feb. 21. Look in the Jan.5 edition of the River Falls Journal for more information on the upcoming elections.
As of Jan. 3, 10:45 a.m., River Falls City Councilman, Bob Hughes has declared his candidacy, but not filed his papers (he has until 5 p.m. to do so). He will be running against two other opponents, Christopher Gagne and Ed Valle. With 3 candidates running, a primary will be needed. Look in the Jan.5 edition of the River Falls Journal for more information on the upcoming elections.