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Top Stories August 2, 2014

BDACT Closes On Property


8/02/14 - The Beaver Dam Area Community Theatre has closed the sale of the property for their future expansion project. The non-profit is in the midst of a $2.5-million dollar fundraising effort that had originally focused on expanding their current facility, the century-old Baptist church on North Spring Street. The theatre troupe announced a couple weeks ago the purchase of the former St. Patrick’s School on West Maple from the St. Katherine Drexel parish. Theatre Board President Jen Espenscheid says while the move may be unexpected, the board studied the opportunity for several months and determined it was the best option. Among other things, the plans for the school call for 400 seats in the main auditorium, which is 120 more than the currently facility would be able to accommodate. Also, the school would be 25-thousand square feet, nearly 10-thousand square feet more than the theatre. Remodeling costs for the school would also be less with a price-tag of just over $2.4-million dollars, compared to nearly $3-million to renovate the existing building. Other advantages include a more modern building, on-site parking, handicapped accessibility, and a large auditorium for community or business events. That main auditorium would be acoustically sound with an orchestra pit and updated technology. There would also be classroom space, backstage work areas, dressing rooms and a second, 200-seat theatre for more experimental productions or youth plays.  Jim Flynn, with the theatre’s fundraising committee, says a survey of their top-tier contributors showed support for the new plan and, in some cases, an increase in their pledge. The theatre is now at the $1.1 million dollar mark and needs another $1.4 million to break ground. The public is invited to walk through the former St. Patrick’s school, and learn more about the project, Monday, Wednesday and August 8 at 5:30pm. Those who attend are asked to enter the west door at 117 W. Maple St.


Pilot From EAA AirVenture Crash Dies From Injuries


8/02/14 – The 74-year-old pilot of a single-engine Breezy airplane that crashed Thursday morning at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh died from his injuries Friday, while a 21-year-old female from suburban Chicago was taken to an Oshkosh hospital where she remains in critical condition. Jim Oeffinger ‘s plane crashed in a grassy area east of the airport's north-south runway while attempting a landing at about 9 a.m., during the early hours of the fourth day of the Experimental Aircraft Association's AirVenture convention. According to the Oshkosh Fire Department the plane burst into flames after it crashed into a line of Oshkosh Corp. military trucks that are being stored on the periphery of the airport. John Holland of the Oshkosh Fire Department says fire crews on the grounds saw the crash happen and were able to get to the scene within two minutes. Oeffinger was transported by ambulance to Theda Clark Medical Center in Neenah. The F-A-A and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating a possible cause.  Oeffinger was a member of the Experimental Aircraft Association, which is holding its annual Air-Venture convention through Sunday in Oshkosh.


Registration Opens For Mini-Triathlon 


8/02/14 - A mini-triathlon in Fall River is being planned for September 20th. Registrations are now being taken for the "Tri-Lazy" biking, canoeing and running event. The race is open to individuals or two person teams. Participants must be age 14 or older. Awards for the top finishers in each age group will be presented at the after-the-race party at the Savanna Oaks "Sorghum Fest." The race will begin with an 8.5-mile bike ride around Lazy Lake. Participants will then canoe 2.2-miles across the lake; canoes will be provided. The third leg of the race is a 3.1-mile run with the finish line on Swarthout Road. The Tri-Lazy is being planned by the not-for-profit Pirate Foundation to help build an athletic complex for Fall River schools. The run-portion of the triathlon goes right past the future site of the complex. Rules and registration information can be found at A link and additional contact information is on our website / Contact: Brian Frank at (608) 886-2166


Front Street Demolition Projects Begins Monday


8/02/14 - The 203 Front Street building demolition project is scheduled to begin Monday, August 4th. Weather permitting, the project is anticipated to take approximately 3 weeks.  The sidewalk, south parking lane, and right turn lane in this area of Front St. will be fenced off during the demolition. Warning signs will be installed to warn traffic and pedestrians of the work zone.  It is not anticipated that there will be any road closures or detours associated with the project.  Upon completion of the demolition, the site will be restored with topsoil, seed, and mulch and the river bank will receive rip rap to match the neighboring properties. Corex Excavation and Construction, Sun Prairie, is the General Contractor performing the work for this project.


Wisconsin State Patrols Partake In Highway Challenge


8/02/14 - The challenge continues to help reduce traffic deaths and injuries. The Wisconsin State Patrol will join law enforcement agencies around the nation as part of the “I-90/94 Challenge.” It started yesterday and will continue through Monday, August  4. State Patrol troopers and aircraft will be part of the high-visibility effort watching for speeders, unbuckled motorists and other traffic violations along the I-90 and I-94 corridors across Wisconsin. Local law enforcement agencies have been invited to join in the I-90/94 Challenge which coincides with the start of what is traditionally the deadliest month on Wisconsin roadways. Over the last five years, an average of 62 people died in Wisconsin traffic crashes in August.


Critics Say Candidates For Governor Should Focus On Different Issues


8/02/14 - 8/3/14 - The state's largest business group says the candidates for governor should not focus on the Wisconsin jobs sent overseas -- but rather, how the state can help companies reduce their production costs.  Manufacturers-and-Commerce president Kurt Bauer says production costs are the main reason companies outsource jobs -- and those costs are 20-percent higher in the U-S than elsewhere, not including labor.  Governor Scott Walker and Democrat Mary Burke have been going after each other the past two weeks over outsourcing -- giving state tax breaks to firms that send jobs overseas -- and Burke's role at Trek Bicycle which makes most of its bikes outside America.  Bauer says the cost of producing goods-and-services is a key question that's not being asked in the governor's race.  He cited the 2011 law that phases out income taxes for manufacturing and agricultural output by 2016.  Bauer says the law "protects thousands of Wisconsin factory and farm jobs."  Critics say individuals are paying higher shares of taxes to make up for the millions that industries and farmers no longer pay.  


Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Recall


8/02/14 - The type of ignition switch problems that affected General Motors is now turning up in Wisconsin's famous motorcycle brand.  Harley-Davidson of Milwaukee says it's recalling 45-hundred F-X-D-L Dyna Low-Rider models sold throughout the world.  The company says engine vibrations can move the ignition switches from the "On" position to the one that runs accessories only.  Harley says the problem has the ability to shut off a motorcycle while it's being driven, thus causing a possible crash.  There have been no reported crashes or injuries related to the issue.  The recall includes bikes from the 2014-and-a-half model year, which includes over 33-hundred Dyna Low-Riders sold in the U-S.  Harley says an engine-mount bracket can excessively vibrate if the engine is modified to rev at over 56-hundred R-P-M's.  Harley started notifying owners of the affected bikes late last month.  Dealers are replacing bracket switches and ignition switch knobs at no cost. 


Yesterday's Headlines
    - Supreme Court Makes Three Major Decisions
    - Officials Uphold Domestic Partner Registry
    - Supreme Court Supports Collective Bargaining

For those stories and more click here.

For older stories visit our news archive here.