Judy Wiff has been regional editor for RiverTown’s Wisconsin newspapers since 1996. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and sociology from UW-River Falls. She has worked as a reporter for several weekly newspapers in Wisconsin.
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Harvey Hielkema's decision to sell his collection of vintage cars and tractors was made for a simple reason: God told him to. As the 77-year-old Baldwin widower tells it, several months ago while he read through a book about the number of children around the world suffering and dying from hunger and malnutrition, God spoke to him. "All of a sudden, I could hear the Lord saying to me, 'You don't need all that stuff in your sheds when all those kids are starving.'" Hielkema took the message to heart and called an auctioneer. At 5:30 p.m.
St. Croix Valley Habitat for Humanity's Eco Village project in River Falls moved from the planning to the implementation stage this first week of May as the excavation contractor began site preparation work. Zappa Brothers of Hudson started moving in heavy equipment Monday with the intention of starting work Wednesday. Along with filling and grading on the site itself, workers will reconstruct Apollo Road on the edge of the development. The plan is to build six houses this year.
The 10th annual artOPENer Studio Tour, set for the first weekend in May, will include ten studios from Stillwater, Minn., to Hudson and River Falls. Visitors are invited to meet and chat with artists working in a variety of mediums including glass, jewelry, painting, pottery and sculpture. Hours will be 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, May 5 and 6. The artOPENer tour features artwork for sale, as well as glassblowing, printmaking and potter's wheel demonstrations throughout the weekend. The tour offers the opportunity to visit a mix of artists' studios and galleries along the St.
Gov. Scott Walker hopes to revive a plan introduced twice by Sen. Sheila Hardorf, R-River Falls, to require police to collect DNA samples from suspects when they are arrested in some felony and serious sex cases. Saying this is an attempt to ensure that the most violent offenders are held accountable, Walker announced last week that he is asking Attorney General J.B. Hollen to submit a plan to collect DNA at the time of arrest.
Recalling his grandfather whose "values did not include prohibition," a prison inmate, and a boss who took credit for his subordinates' work, S. Mark Tyler advised students to set their own standards for success. Tyler, president of OEM Fabricators and this year's executive in residence at UW-River Falls, addressed a packed ballroom of students, faculty and community members April 3. His grandfather was a talented but illiterate tinsmith, who was successful enough to own his own home and a lake home and hold the mortgages on his kids' houses, said Tyler.
With an increase of 1.3% in a year, the number of River Falls students who qualify for free and reduced-price meals rose at a rate slightly higher than the state average. But because of confidentially standards, federal guidelines and limits on what school districts can do to verify eligibility, it's hard to tell what that increase means. According to a report released by Wisconsin's Department of Public Instruction in March, free and reduced-price meal eligibility in the state has increased for the 8th year. In the River Falls district this year, 21.1% of students have qualified for either
ELLSWORTH -- A River Falls city council member accused of possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia will take his case to a jury. Last week Pierce County Judge Joseph Boles scheduled a two-day, 12-person jury trial for Robert J. Hughes, 29, 249 Foster St. The trial will be July 11-12. Hughes is charged with three misdemeanor counts: Possession of tetrahydrocannabinol; possession of drug paraphernalia; and possession of a controlled substance as a result of an incident last Aug.
"You need camera," said the dark-skinned man striding along the Mazatlan beach, swinging a beer bottle by its long neck. "Where are you from?" he asked. "Canada?" I said I was from the U.S. That seemed to cinch it for him. "You need camera," he declared firmly, marching off without waiting for a response. This stranger's comments weren't as intrusive as they might sound. Here I was with my winter-pale skin standing alone just at the edge of the tide, savoring the approach of sunset on a long stretch of beach. The colors of the sky weren't spectacular, they went deeper than that.
Saying she has the right mix of life experience and experience in state government, Sen. Kathleen Vinehout, D-Alma, has announced she'll run for governor in the anticipated recall election. Vinehout, 53, whose district now encompasses most of Pierce County, has represented District 31 in the Wisconsin Senate since January 2007.
She hoisted the bankers box of recall petitions to her shoulder, holding it there with her right hand and sauntered triumphantly down the line, high-fiving the yellow-vested volunteers along the sidewalk. Nan Lambert's grin as she made that short walk from a U-Haul truck to Wisconsin's Government Accountability Board office was exuberant. Barb Greub made the same brief trip a little less boisterously, but the smile that lighted her face was just as joyful. Lambert is an unemployed mental health worker from the town of Troy. Greub, who is retired, lives in River Falls.