C entral T imes Marathon Countyâ€™s Guide to Living in the Moment
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C entral T imes
Marathon County’s Guide to Living in the Moment 2011 - 2013
High Quality Health Care
A Community of Caring
Inside this issue
Credits Cover Photos: Rib Mountain by Bill Hancock Cow in Field by Nanette Plano Chalkfest by TJ McManus Contributing Writers: Michelle Goetsch Ontogeny Advertising & Design Karen Nerison Cover Design: Ontogeny Advertising & Design
Sustainable Business.........................................................................................................................4 Building Foundations. Building Lives...............................................................................................6 Opportunities for Higher Learning.................................................................................................8 Supporting Business in Marathon County................................................................................... 19 Just Add Water............................................................................................................................... 20 Agriculture in Marathon County...................................................................................................22 The Arts . ........................................................................................................................................ 24 More Ways to Live Life in the Moment . ....................................................................................30 Downtown Wausau........................................................................................................................ 32 About the Region . ........................................................................................................................ 34 Resources.................................................................................................................................. 35-37
Your Chamber. Your Success.
This publication is brought to you by The Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce. For more information about The Chamber please call 715-845-6231 or visit www.wausauchamber.com.
The Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce invites you to enjoy this publication which uncovers why Marathon County is the place to work, play and live in the moment. In Marathon County you are in a whole different zone. Wisconsin Central Time is about living in the moment. It’s not about living to work or working to live, but about living fully; about enjoying that kind of balance to live that allows you to approach every day with heightened anticipation. Time is on your side here. You are close to the best of everything Wisconsin has to offer. But Marathon County isn’t just about an abundance of exceptional experiences at your doorstep; it’s an attitude that elevates the richness of everyday moments. We welcome you to Marathon County where the time is always right, because you are in a zone that beckons you to seize the day.
by Michelle Goetsch
n one 15 minute car ride along Wausau’s northwest corner, a driver can pass the LEED gold certified Aspirus Women’s Health Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU), miles of mixed farm and forest land and a hub of manufacturing facilities in the Wausau West Industrial Park. The short road trip marks the trifecta of Marathon County’s founding and future sustainable business infrastructure: support for environmentally responsible business practices, a vast supply of natural resources and a prominent, advanced manufacturing sector. Forward-thinking communities looking to grow and maintain economic prowess keep energy efficiency and other economically advantageous sustainable initiatives at the top of their agenda. Marathon County’s businesses acknowledge the imperative nature of a socially, economically and environmentally responsible business model. In many different capacities, area entrepreneurs incorporate these realities into their strategic growth plans. “Overall, there are more and more businesses in the area who are open to taking this approach to business, mainly because of the economic times that we’re in,” said Ali Wolf, Energy Consultant for Complete Control, an energy management firm. “I think businesses are trying to be more proactive in order to see how they can perform better—which I think is a good practice regardless of the fact that it’s related to environmental responsibility.” LEED-certified structures such as the headquarters of local contractor, The Samuels Group, and the offices of the Midwest Renewable Energy Association, showcase both the environmentally and economically responsible vision of regional businesses. They also stand as a testament to the readily available technology and resources to make that vision come to life. “I think we’re seeing sustainable projects in all sorts of businesses, both commercial and industrial,” said Mike Murphy, Miron Construction’s Vice President of Wausau’s Northern Operations. “We see it in the NICU and in schools that have done LEED, green or sustainable features. Even churches are asking about it and want to incorporate it in some fashion. I think there are more people that are coming out of their conservative shells and starting to see the true advantages to using sustainable or green building practices.” Even the school districts are jumping on board. Wausau East High School now boasts two wind turbines, a tracking photovoltaic system and a renewable energy curriculum. A recent Complete Control-facilitated energy audit on the entire
The Samuels Group, “311 Financial Way”, The first privately-owned, LEED registered facility in Wausau Wausau School District has also resulted in tens of thousands of dollars in annual savings from energy-related district operating costs. Although energy efficiency remains a hot topic for regional firms, sustainable business initiatives in central Wisconsin have and always will maintain a strong focus on the area’s abundant inventory of natural resources and the byproducts of those resources. Hundreds of miles of farm and forestland and a veteran paper and pulp industry have more recently attracted the intrigue of companies worldwide. Great potential now exists to make central Wisconsin a hub for bioenergy production and research. Area firms looking to capitalize on central Wisconsin’s bioenergy production possibilities such as American Science & Technology have already begun to pop-up on the Marathon County radar. Even research institutions like the Wisconsin Institute for Sustainable Technology, which is currently housed 30 miles south of Wausau at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point campus, has recognized increased funding earmarked for bioenergy research projects. Some firms are already taking advantage of the rich abundance of natural byproducts from central Wisconsin’s paper and pulp industries. Marth Wood Shavings and American Wood Fibers are two local firms who reprocess wood and other natural fibers into commodities such as pellet fuel, animal bedding and wood fiber filler. “The future of renewable energy in central Wisconsin is bright,” said Doug Stingle, outreach director for central Wisconsin’s Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA). The MREA is an area non-profit founded on the principle of promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency throughout the Midwest. Each year, they host the world’s largest renewable
energy fair in Amherst, WI, located about 30 minutes outside of Wausau. The fair annually draws around 20,000 visitors and features over 275 business exhibitors. “Not only is the Midwest Renewable Energy Association located here, many technical colleges in the area are starting renewable energy programs to train the workforce of tomorrow,” Stingle added. “The opportunities for manufacturing renewable energy system components are great. Central Wisconsin has a highly educated and trained workforce that is ready for renewable energy manufacturing jobs.” Stingle’s reference to the future of renewable energy component manufacturing is yet another exciting prospect for the region’s economic future. Marathon County has always been recognized as a leader in the advanced manufacturing sector. That tradition has attracted the interest of renewable energy system component firms looking to expand their manufacturing facilities within the United States. Marathon County economic development leaders are optimistic that renewable energy component manufacturing will be a dynamic force in the future of central Wisconsin’s economy.
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Building Foundations. Building Lives.
by Ontogeny Advertising & Design
ith professional administrators, strong teachers, a diverse curriculum, an ongoing assessment system, along with parent and community involvement, we will build and maintain a top-tier educational system from which everyone in the region may benefit.
Take a look at Newman Catholic Schools! Newman Catholic Schools invites you to take a closer look at our Preschool to 12th grade progams. Come see why so many families choose to give the gift of a Catholic education.
Building Foundations. Building Lives.
It may be the most important part of your decision to relocate. It will have an effect not only on your children’s lives, but the entire family’s as well. In Marathon County, we realize the importance of a quality education and how it leads to quality of life in the long run. Nothing says home like a solid foundation. If you’re looking to relocate, you should know education is a major factor that has not only drawn people back to this area and had others make Marathon County their new home, but it has also kept families here for generations. From pre-school to college, Marathon County has it all. Students in our schools are receiving a quality education that will prepare them for both the workforce and life.
By the numbers.
Our nine public school districts within Marathon County are grouped as either “rural” or “urban.” The Wausau and D.C. Everest school districts are the urban districts, while the rural districts include Abbotsford, Athens, Edgar, Marathon, Mosinee, Spencer and Stratford schools. Also available are three private schools, along with a Montessori option for your family. All Marathon County public school districts continue to have graduation rates higher than others in the State of Wisconsin, and have since 1998-1999. The average composite ACT score for 2008-2009 was 21.8 for both urban and rural schools in Marathon County. Historically, the average ACT score for Marathon County schools closely parallels state ACT scores. Source: Focus 2009-2011 LIFE in Marathon County
Building our youth.
Without a high school diploma, an individual’s earnings power is markedly reduced. This could directly impact the state of our county’s economic success. We maintain great focus on our education system as a whole to ensure as many students as possible graduate and continue on with post-secondary education. As a county we are committed to continuously improving the level of education in our region. Through assessment, data analysis
Contact us today - 715-845-5735 www.newmancatholicschools.com
and best practices on both the local and state level, we strive to maintain our current position of being ahead of the education curve. Throughout the county, you and your family have access to: l After school programs and resources l Career and vocational resources l Learning centers l Reading improvement l Test prep centers l Tutoring
It doesnâ€™t stop there.
After high school, Marathon County provides numerous educational opportunities and a number of good jobs locally. We never lose sight of preparing our youth for everything ahead of them and what may be just around the corner. This is exceedingly important, as individuals will need to obtain new skills in our changing economy, now more than ever. So, if youâ€™re looking to relocate and seeking quality learning to fit your quality of life, the K-12 education systems of Marathon County are second to none. For more K-12 school information see page 35.
Opportunities for Higher Learning
by Michelle Goetsch
f options translate into opportunities, then Marathon County high school students in search of a college degree don’t need to look far from home. In fact, the number of institutions of higher education in this central Wisconsin community nearly rivals that of area high schools. Just as Marathon County’s high schools maintain some of the top graduation rates in the country, the area’s regionally and nationally accredited colleges and universities provide students with the in-demand tools they need to succeed in today’s workforce. Wausau-native Jessica Glenetski couldn’t agree more. After four years of active duty in the United States Army, Glenetski moved back to her hometown to begin her college education. A non-traditional student also completing a two-year stint in the National Guard, she specifically sought out a school that offered a high quality education, with the perks of flexible scheduling and one-on-one support from professors who could help direct her in her studies. Knowing that the University of WisconsinMarathon County could offer her just that, the choice to attend the local University of Wisconsin system college was simple. “I knew that they had a very good reputation,” Glenetski said. “Attending UW-Marathon County for my first two years of college was the perfect way for me to begin a great education, while getting acclimated to the demands of a college workload and while I was still trying to decide what, exactly, I wanted to study.” Glenetski took advantage of the seamless transition from UWMC to a larger, four-year UW campus, UW-Milwaukee, where she completed her bachelor’s degree in communications. She now leads communications efforts for a branch of the United Way as their Communications and Marketing Coordinator. Glenetski’s is just one success story of many. The Wausau area boasts four highly reputable universities and colleges that graduating seniors and non-traditional students alike can rely on for excellent higher education opportunities: University of Wisconsin-Marathon County (UWMC), Northcentral Technical College (NTC), Globe University and Rasmussen College. With four different institutions to choose from, area students benefit from an endless array of program options to serve their individual needs. UWMC, alone, offers over 100 program majors toward two and four-year degrees, includes traditional and virtual classroom learning options, the choice of living in an on-campus residence hall and a recently constructed, state-of-the-art UW Center for Civic Engagement, which houses the University’s new theater. “We provide a pathway to a UW degree,” said Dr. Keith Montgomery, UWMC Interim Dean and CEO. “That’s the core of our mission. And our students are very successful. There are students who transfer with their associate degree from our
Rasmussen College offers more than 55 programs in 5 different schools of study. • School of Business • School of Technology & Design • School of Allied Health • School of Justice Studies • School of Education
CALL TODAY! (715) 841-8000 1101 Westwood Drive, Wausau, WI 54401
school, and they graduate from any school in the UW system at the same rate at which their peers graduate. We’re very proud of that fact.” “They say if you can succeed at UWMC, you are guaranteed to succeed at any other school in the state, and it’s true,” Glenetski added. “It’s a great place to start a college degree. I’m proud to have started my college career there. It helped me lay the foundation for moving on to a larger school and then into the workforce at a level where I could do nothing but succeed.” Complementing UWMC’s more traditional college setting is Wausau-based NTC. NTC’s main campus on Wausau’s north side extends into six regional central Wisconsin locations. They offer flexible course scheduling and a mix of traditional and online classroom settings that truly caters to any adult learner. Highlights of the college’s 150 associate degrees, technical diplomas and short-term certificate programs include training in current high-demand healthcare jobs such as nursing, radiography and dental hygiene. NTC also provides a substantial number of technical diplomas for occupational trades such as machining tool operations and wood manufacturing technologies. Their Workforce Learning Solutions program showcases continuing education courses taught by top area professionals in their field. In addition to the programs offered at NTC and UWMC, Rasmussen College and Globe University have recently brought to the area two more options for attaining a college degree from institutions of higher learning. Both schools focus on providing training from faculty members with recent or active real-world professional experience. With this mission, students receive
Teachers, adminisTraTors, corporaTe Trainers – Earn your Doctor of Educational Leadership degree “The Edgewood College doctoral program’s cohort model provided a superb collegial classroom environment with lasting friendships and wonderful networking opportunities. In the truest sense, the entire department is vested in the success of its doctoral students. I have encouraged everyone I know who is seriously considering the pursuit of a doctorate in Education to attend Edgewood College. If you are serious about it, you simply cannot go wrong!” – Dr. William McCoy, Class of 2010 classes meeT in Wausau.
WWW.edgeWood.edu | 608-663-3250
Wausau Ad.indd 1
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Are You Looking for a College • With practical training for real careers? • Where you will be a name, not a number? • That fits into your lifestyle?
At Globe University you will find • Programs in business, health science, legal science, technology • Small classes and personal attention • Day, evening and online options • The training you need for the job you want
Wausau Campus: 715.301.1300 | globeuniversity.edu
career-focused training that prepares them for the challenges inherent in today’s business sector. “At Rasmussen College we pride ourselves on providing the necessary tools for students to achieve success all the way through the educational process and beyond, as they transition into the workforce,” said Andrea Ohlloff, an Outside High School Program Manager at Rasmussen’s Wausau campus. “We help recent high school graduates begin their journey as college students with scholarship opportunities and program advising, and then provide them with job placement services as they complete their degrees and progress into the workforce.” For adult students of any age, the region’s select institutions of higher learning all offer unique learning experiences that provide the resources to attain success in the professional world. The benefits to the existence of these multiple educational organizations, however, are realized just as much by the community, as they are to local students. Many students who attend these schools realize the quality of life that exists here in central Wisconsin and choose to remain or eventually return to the area to pursue their professional endeavors. Thanks to these educational opportunities, regionally grown talent like Glenetski continues to contribute to the economic and cultural vitality of the region. For higher learning contact information see page 35.
High Quality Health Care
by Michelle Goetsch
igh school football reigns on fall Friday nights in Marathon County. For Dr. William Jarvis, an orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist of the Wausau area’s Bone and Joint Clinic, keeping those student athletes healthy and on the field is priority number one during these weekly clashes on the gridiron. But this is just your average medical attention at a small-town high school football game, right? Wrong. When Jarvis and his colleagues walk those sidelines, these aren’t just high school football players, and for the student athletes, this isn’t just any level of medical care. Jarvis completed his medical education at some of the nation’s most prestigious educational institutions and healthcare organizations and the same distinctions can be made of his colleagues. The exclusive level of complimentary medical sports coverage
offered to all area high school students by Dr. Jarvis and the Bone and Joint Clinic demonstrates exactly the exceptional standard of health care services available in the Wausau region - always personalized attention and always elite level patient care. “We are very fortunate to have such high quality healthcare in central Wisconsin… and access to quality health care,” Jarvis said. “The region has some of the most highly specialized physicians in the country, right in our own back yards.” Unlike communities similar in population density, the Wausau region boasts three major healthcare systems: Aspirus, Marshfield Clinic and Ministry Health Care. Out of these organizations, multiple nationally recognized specialty care services and newly constructed, state of the art medical facilities have distinguished the Wausau region as a hub for health care excellence and
renowned medical research. The considerable assemblage of such accomplished physicians, researchers and medical staff translates into the availability of only the highest quality healthcare for central Wisconsin residents. “The network of care provided by the three health care systems in this region is much more advanced than the level one would expect to find in smaller communities and rural areas of Wisconsin or other states,” said Geoffrey Huys, Director of Public Relations and Communications for Ministry Health Care. “These systems have been serving the region for well over 100 years.” Here in the Wausau region, premium patient care begins at infancy. Aspirus Wausau Hospital houses one of the nation’s few private room-concept newborn intensive care units (NICU). The NICU, which opened its doors in 2009, features the latest technology for infant care, including a Leadership in Energy (continued on page 12)
Excellent health care for your family is a journey. One Aspirus takes with you, every step of the way. The team at Aspirus Clinics knows: compassionate treatment is just as vital as medical excellence, especially when caring for your family. That’s why we provide expert, personal care that’s lifelong. Because it’s not just about the big moments—it’s about being there through it all for a lifetime.
and Environmental (LEED) gold certification. The award accredits the facility for the significant measures made during its construction to consider impact on the outside environment, as well as indoor environmental variables that have the potential to affect newborn health. Located adjacent to the NICU is the Aspirus Women’s Health Birthing Center, one of Wausau’s two major birthing centers. “In our birthing center, we do about 1,200 births a year,” said Sheri Holmes, Aspirus Women’s Health Service Line Administrator. “It’s the largest birthing center in our seven county area. Families come here partly because they know if there was a problem, they know we have the NICU. We also have specialized physicians, social workers and clinical nurse specialists assigned to the birthing center, which is unique in a community of this size.” The capacity for excellent patient care grows with families through childhood. Just a 45-minute drive from Wausau’s city center sits Ministry Saint Joseph’s Children’s Hospital—one of only three accredited children’s hospitals in
the State of Wisconsin. Saint Joseph’s Hospital features a renowned pediatric oncology program that serves young patients from all across the northern Midwest. Ministry Saint Joseph’s Hospital also ranks best in the state for cardiology, stroke treatment and coronary intervention for adults. In fact, Aspirus, Marshfield Clinic and Ministry Health Care combine to provide residents with multiple highly respected cardiovascular adult care programs. With these specialty programs, patients have access to
national clinical medical trials and some of the most technologically advanced, minimally invasive vascular disease treatment options available today. “People looking to move their business or their family look at the quality of health care available, said Dr. Gary Zimbric, regional medical director for Marshfield Clinic. The greater Wausau area has a reputation for having a lot of high technology, high quality health care.” When it comes to health care offerings for all ages, the Wausau region
High Quality Health Care by the Numbers Aspirus 30 facilities across upper Michigan and northern Wisconsin 4,700 employees Marshfield Clinic 50 locations across central and northern Wisconsin 775 physicians in 80 medical specialties Ministry Health Care 16 hospitals and 22 clinics across Wisconsin 11,500 employees
From breaking ground to
Truly becoming a part of your community is about more than just location, and the folks at Ministry Saint Clare’s Hospital have worked hard to prove that. From day one, we’ve worked hard to grow right along with Wausau, offering the latest in medical technology and the finest specialized care in the area. But over the years nothing has been more satisfying for us than seeing your satisfaction.
Ministry Saint Clare’s Hospital | 3400 Ministry Parkway, Weston | 715.393.3000 | ministryhealth.org
differentiates itself from other communities similar in size not only because of the availability of advanced medical technology, but because of access to that technology, as well. The Wausau region sustains both a small, more densely populated downtown area with numerous surrounding suburban communities. That comes in addition to a large outlying rural population. Given this criterion, the three major health care organizations devised strategic service systems with the goal of providing top level medical care to the entire Marathon County community. Residents from across the vast service area enjoy proximity to health centers housing the latest in medical treatment options and specialized medical professionals. Central Wisconsin even houses two Level II trauma care centers, complete with 24-hour air and ground medical transport. The combination of advanced technology, highly specialized physicians and sheer breadth of the health care sector in the Wausau area also allows residents to benefit from an extremely proactive medical community. The Aspirus Women’s Health mobile imaging unit shines as a perfect example of the industry’s ample investment in the community in which it exists. Each year, Aspirus Women’s Health teams up with the local Susan G Komen affiliate to provide free breast cancer screenings for underserved or underinsured women. The mobile unit reaches hundreds of women located in remote areas of Aspirus’ service area who might not have available transportation for such healthcare services. Programs such as these showcase the extended value of elite medical care available in a smaller community. “We have exquisite women’s health care services for a community of this size,” said Holmes,” and not just from Aspirus, but also from Ministry Health Care and Marshfield Clinic. Our mobile mammogram unit program for underserved women is a very unique program for any community to have and we are very appreciative of the local non-profit support we receive to help make it a success.”
the United States. Clinical trials in the specialties of oncology and cardiology also remain an emphasis for area research endeavors. Complementing these highly reputable research programs is Marshfield Labs. As one of the nation’s largest full-size private practice laboratory systems, Marshfield Labs reports more than 25 million tests annually with research foci that range from diagnostic human testing, to forensic toxicology and veterinary medicine. Marshfield Clinic’s progressive private laboratory system and research foundation, their patient care services, as well as those of Aspirus and Ministry Health Care has created a flourishing healthcare sector in central Wisconsin. The industry continues to attract young talent to the area and drives economic development in various other capacities across the region. “Health care creates clean jobs, a sustainable economy and attracts a skilled workforce, said Zimbric. “It’s a major attribute of a community and necessary to a community’s vitality.” That vitality shows up in full force every Friday night on the gridiron, proving that bedside or sideline, Wausau region health care professionals bring personalized, elite medical solutions.
A hub of medical research expertise
Above and beyond all of the numerous amenities associated with the Wausau region’s healthcare sector, excellence in medical research stands as the industry’s pinnacle attribute. At the Marshfield Clinic’s Research Foundation, headquartered just 45 minutes southwest of Wausau, globally recognized scientists and research specialists combine their expertise on over 400 research and educational projects. The foundation drives national and even global studies in clinical research, rural and agricultural health and safety, human genetics, epidemiology and biomedical informatics. Today, the foundation is home to the largest population-based genetics research project in
A Community of Caring
by Michelle Goetsch
ull together the bellbottoms, platform shoes and all the lights and glam of a Saturday Night Fever disco dance-off and you will find yourself immersed in the Marathon County philanthropic scene. Each year, many of the region’s most exciting, extravagant community events center around non-profit fundraisers and volunteer programs and events. The annual Disco Cures Cancer fundraiser is one certainly not to miss. For almost two decades now, community members have come together for this groovy fall event, donning their swankiest 1970’s garb for a night of disco dancing and charitable giving. All proceeds from the event benefit local cancer programs. “WIFC’s Disco Cures Cancer attendance has raised about a quarter of a million dollars,” said Dave Kallaway, lead volunteer organizer and local WIFC radio morning show host. “I’m always completely humbled by the response and support from Wausau and central Wisconsin so that we can continue to do this event.” Fundraisers such as Disco Cures Cancer and Wine, Cheese & All That Jazz—a sublime evening full of socializing, smooth jazz music and an international collection of wines, microbrews and cheeses—truly capture the community’s commitment to supporting its local non-profit missions. These events are all locally originated, organized by volunteers and funds raised almost always support local organizations and area residents. “Anyone attending Wine, Cheese & All That Jazz can expect a night of great wine, great food, great music and great fun! And it’s for a great cause—the Wausau Area Boys and Girls Club,” said Keith Dupuis, co-owner of Adrenalign Marketing and one of the event’s long-time volunteer planning committee members. “It is one of those events that allows us to get dressed up and enjoy an elegant evening filled with friendly camaraderie only found in central Wisconsin.” The key to the success of these annual fundraiser events lies in one of Marathon County’s greatest assets - its volunteer base. Thousands of area residents like Kallaway and Dupuis donate time to volunteer at activities that better the community. All of these helping hands play a role in establishing a higher quality of life for residents, no matter how small the hand. Take, for example, Peyton Medick of Weston. After watching a news segment one evening highlighting the issue of hunger, the 12-year-old D.C. Everest Middle School student decided she wanted to prevent anyone from suffering from hunger in her own community. That night Medick created Peyton’s Promise, an organization whose mission aspires to “make the world a better place, one can at a time.” It didn’t take long for pantry volunteers and food item donors to respond to Peyton’s message. Through Medick’s volunteer work, Peyton’s Promise has collected over 30 tons of food for local food pantries.
Disco Cures Cancer “The community has supported me 100 percent,” Medick said. “They go out of their way to donate to the pantry and even encourage me and what I’m doing with Peyton’s Promise. I’ve gotten emails and notes of encouragement. It’s just amazing how much this community wants to give.” Even Jenn Golbach, program director for the United Way of Marathon County’s Women in Action group sees something unique in the proactive nature of volunteerism in the region. “You’d be hard-pressed to find a community that is so generous and compassionate,” Golbach said, “and I’m saying that not being from the community. I’m from the Twin Cities.” Golbach’s Women in Action program consists of 120 female volunteer members who donate various amounts of time to area programs and activities that serve other local women. Their largest annual fundraiser, Power of the Purse, brings together women of all ages to bid on an assortment of one-of-a-kind purses and bags from throughout the country and the world. Funds raised from the silent auction benefit area programs that help individual women and their families to break out of the cycle of poverty. Not only does the Women in Action program serve impoverished women, it also gives women of all walks of life and occupations a chance to network on a professional level. For
Dial To Give Help or Get Help. Free and Confidential Non-Emergency Information and Referrals to Community Services and Volunteer Opportunities Search online at www.unitedwaymc.org
both men and women, these area volunteer opportunities offer a major positive to living and working in a community this size. Local volunteer activities often place young professionals side-byside with veteran business leaders. In-turn, the individuals involved, as well as the entire community, benefit from potential cultural and economic growth and development. Another volunteer group that Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure developed out of the United Way and showcases the successful tandem of philanthropic duties and professional networking is the Emerging Leaders program. Young professionals of all industries come together through Emerging Leaders to tackle volunteer projects that better the community. Through volunteering, these young men and women also establish important relationships that can benefit them in their professional and social lives. Groups like Emerging Leaders and Women in Action continue to become more and more popular in the Wausau region. Golbach believes that proximity to the end result of their efforts is one key component driving the motivation and huge achievements of these growing volunteer programs. “Wausau is a small enough community where you can actually feel connected and be close to the impact you’re making,” she said.
Few cities can offer philanthropists and volunteers the joyful satisfaction of seeing for themselves the effect their time and money has on their own community. Not only does Marathon County provide this appeal for individual community members, it is also a huge factor in why so many regional businesses contribute a vast amount of time, effort and funding to local non-profit organizations and volunteer groups. This was never so evident as it was during the First Annual Central WI Susan G Komen Race for the Cure. Wausau is the proud home of the Susan G Komen central Wisconsin Affiliate. In 2010, the local extension of the global breast cancer advocacy group hosted its first annual race/walk to raise funds for local breast cancer awareness, education and outreach programs. Only about 120 communities across the country have the honor of hosting such an event. Local businesses donated thousands of dollars and in-kind donations, in combination with hundreds of their employees who volunteered time to make the event possible. The event drew over 2,200 participants and raised $150,000 that will fund local breast health programs. “I think all of us want to live where people care about each other,” said Susan Ford-Hoffert, vice president of communications, at UMR and volunteer president of the Susan G Komen Central Wisconsin Affiliate. “That doesn’t just happen. We have to nurture a community just as we nurture our businesses. By contributing time, talent and treasure to non-profit organizations we can ensure we are building a place to live that places great value on taking care of those less fortunate, on a clean environment, on treating all creatures with kindness, on opening doors to young people, on fighting disease and on overcoming disabilities.”
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Wine, Cheese and All That Jazz
Racing Home by Karen Nerison Director of Marketing, The Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce
hen you ask a NASCAR driver the question, “what are you most proud of in your life?” you may not expect to hear “my son”. Well, when I sat in my office and started off my interview with Scott Wimmer, NASCAR Driver and Wausau native, that is exactly what he told me. Scott enjoys watching his son Hayden grow up, play hockey, ride motorcycles and ski. He enjoys staying involved in not only his son’s life, but also his nieces and nephews, even though he has a very demanding schedule most of the year. He enjoys seeing them learn life’s lessons and having fun. So when I asked Scott a more specific question, “what was he most proud of in his career?” he stated, “I get to race for a living”. Wimmer has been racing since 1991 and always thought that it would just be a hobby, so when he started getting paid for what he loved, it was a dream come true. The Wimmer family has always been entrepreneurs, starting with Scott’s grandfather who owned a granite pit and his father who owned a construction company. Both his father and grandfather taught him about hard work and gave him his “never give up” attitude. So when the State Park Speedway came up for sale, Scott along with Ron Wimmer, announced their purchase of State Park Speedway. The speedway, located in the Town of Rib Mountain, just outside of Wausau, was put up for sale at the end of the 2009 race season and many people in the community questioned its future and whether anyone would ever race there again. When I asked Scott why he decided to reopen State Park Speedway he said, “it was an easy choice to open the speedway”. He absolutely loves it in Wausau and gets back to the region as much as possible. The race track was a big part of his life growing up and he didn’t want to see it go away. Upon purchasing the speedway, the Wimmers made quite a few improvements after getting input from several different drivers on what they would like to see. The entire family helped with the improvements and is involved in running the track. They are a close knit family and they all enjoy being a part of the community. That is when the Wimmers decided it was time to call it their own. “State Park Speedway has always been special to me,” says Wimmer. “It’s where I got my start in racing, so to be able to keep State Park Speedway as a race track and support the racing community that supported me is pretty exciting.” Besides the physical modifications to the State Park
Hayden and Scott Wimmer Speedway, there were also changes made to the racing schedule. Typically the speedway had averaged just four super late model cars every Saturday and about the same number of limited late models. The four-cylinder class was strong, but bringing drivers to the race track is an area of focus for the Wimmers. “Without the cars and drivers, there is no show,” says Scott Wimmer. “We’re working on options to increase the purse and get drivers back out to State Park. For a quarter-mile track, it’s really racy. I want fans to be able to experience some exciting racing this year and that all starts with talking to drivers and getting them interested and that’s what we are going to do.” So, what makes Wausau so special? Wimmer says he has seen so many great changes in the region since he made the move down south 11 years ago. He says, “the community is growing, but still has a hometown feel.” He believes the region is such a wonderful place because of the outdoor sports, quality hospitals, good schools, the Badger State Games and the fact that it is close to a lot of other great areas. He knows this is a wonderful place because community leaders have been willing to make the necessary investments to make improvements such as the highway system, improved downtown and many other things. Scott has a lot more great years of professional racing in him, but he knows when the time is right, he will move back to the region to enjoy the abundance of what it has to offer.
Scott is a NASCAR Nationwide Series driver who was born in Wausau on January 26, 1976. Scott has found success in every series he has ever competed in. He carved his mark on the short tracks around Wisconsin throughout the 1990’s and became recognized as a dominant force in racing around the midwest. Scott started racing at State Park Speedway in Wausau in
1991 at age 15. He moved up through the ranks and became a well-known driver in the midwest. He moved down south, and in 1997, was the Rookie of the Year in the Hooter’s Cup (Late Model Series). In 2000, finished second for the Rookie of the Year in the American Speed Association (ASA) series. He began the season with no sponsor for his family-owned team, but was able to run the full season after winning the first two races of the year. He also made his Winston Cup debut. Between 1994 and 1996, Scott won 17 times and claimed local and regional championship before moving to Hooter’s (Pro Cup Series). Scott really caught the eye of top NASCAR owners after he entered the American Speed Association (ASA) and claimed victories in the first two races he competed in. Scott made his NASCAR debut in 2000, when he was signed to drive the #20 AT&T Pontiac Grand Prix for Bill Davis Racing in the Busch Series. After failing to qualify for his first race at North Carolina Speedway, he finished 18th in his debut at Memphis, followed by a 19th finish at Phoenix. He also made his Winston Cup debut at Atlanta, driving a car he had originally intended to drive at an ARCA RE/MAX Series race that weekend. The qualifying session was rained out for that race, but he was able to take his #23 car and enter in the (Cup) race. He finished 22nd and led nine laps in that race. Scott tallied up two top five and eight top 10 finishes in his rookie year of the Busch Series, which put him 11th in the championship standings. 2002 brought hopes of a Busch Series Championship. Wimmer posted strong finishes in the
early part of the season, but hit his stride during the summer months when he posted four consecutive top 10 finishes in June. Wimmer scored his first Busch Series career win at the fall Dover race, and in the final seven races of the season, posted wins at Memphis, Phoenix and Homestead. Scott finished the season with four wins, 11 top five and 17 top 10 finishes and a career high third in the championship standings. In the 2007 season, Wimmer (along with teammate Jeff Burton), won the NASCAR Busch Series season championship for Richard Childress Racing. The duo finished third in the NASCAR Nationwide Series standings in 2008, while Wimmer posted his sixth career NASCAR win. During the 2009 campaign, Scott looked to put a strong season together in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Scott raced for Curtis Key Sr. and Key Motorsports, as well as Dale Earnhardt Jr and JR Motorsports. 2010 marked Wimmer’s ninth season in the NASCAR Nationwide Series with 199 starts, six wins, one pole, 29 top five, and 71 top 10 finishes. For 2011, Wimmer has races scheduled with the Key Motorsport team. So after all that, when you ask a NASCAR driver the question, “what are you most proud of in your life” you still may not expect to hear “my son”. But when you ask a more specific question, “what are you most proud of in your career?” it may not be as surprising to hear him say, “I get to race for a living”. All of the fans in the Wausau region wish Scott the best in his racing career and with State Park Speedway.
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Supporting Business in Marathon County
by Michelle Goetsch
he momentous prospects of renewable energy system component manufacturing, LEED-certified commercial offices, bioenergy research and clean bio-based fuel production are difficult to beat when it comes to some of Marathon County’s other various sustainable business initiatives. However, the most important sustainable component of any regional business or economy is that citizens support their regional firms. Without regional support, small businesses cannot survive—the exact opposite of the definition of sustainable. Fortunately, for Marathon County businesses, support for area firms of all sizes has, and continues to remain uniquely strong and ever-present. Marathon County’s citizens have a staunch respect and responsibility for supporting regional businesses. A snapshot into the region’s food economy showcases this significant phenomenon. Farming has always maintained an important economic and cultural presence in central Wisconsin. In more recent times, however, the area’s longstanding farming traditions have gained popularity beyond providing commercial chain stores with
Wausau Center Mall, photo provided by TJ McManus
fresh produce, meats and dairy products. Farmers markets now flourish in Marathon County and more and more residents seek out community supported agriculture (CSA) shares. Now more than ever, residents are extremely passionate about supporting their regional farmers, and stocking their refrigerators and pantries with fresh, local, and many times, organic foods. Even many of the region’s restaurateurs try to source menu ingredients from regional producers and farmers markets. Out of this outgrowth of support, entrepreneur Kevin Korpela and organic farmer Blaine Tornow, recognized a need to provide residents a permanent place where they could buy fresh, locally produced foods. Their vision turned into what is now Downtown Grocery, a grocery store located in the heart of Wausau’s downtown district and whose mission it is to serve customers with local, organic foods. “We thought opening a grocery/kitchen/bakery combined with a mission to focus on local-organic foods would serve the growing potential for an economically vibrant Wausau region, while supporting the emerging trends to eat healthy, shop locally and source more of our food from organic and local producers,” said Korpela, Downtown Grocery’s co-owner. Downtown Grocery opened its door in 2006 in downtown Wausau’s historic district. The store now flourishes, based on a business model that sources locally, sells its products locally and serves as an investment in the very community in which it does business. Its 1,500 square feet of historic retail space exemplifies sustainable practices by Wausau region businesses—the Wausau region may be small in comparison with most urban communities across the nation, but when it comes to sustainable business practices our economic leaders think big. For more information on regional business see page 37.
Just Add Water
by Karen Nerison
ater is the key ingredient for the recipe to bring boating, swimming and fishing to life. Water is powerful, yet relaxing all at the same time. Many of us are drawn to water because of what it can offer. It can be refreshing and fun, but it can also have a mind of its own. Water lovers will find plenty of opportunities in Marathon County to take advantage of the great feeling water can bring.
This 6,800 acre lake is in the center of the state between Wausau and Stevens Point. Lake DuBay is a breathtaking, recreational area and a popular destination for boating, swimming and fishing. On a summer day you will find families and friends playing volleyball or frisbee in the water, waterskiing, tubing, fishing or just hanging out on the shore at one of the restaurants or campgrounds around the lake.
Winding around the southern part of Wausau to the western section of the City of Schofield, Lake Wausau is one of the best fisheries in the state. Public boat landings in a number of locations offer easy access. On the western shore, in the town of Rib Mountain is Bluegill Bay Park, a 68-acre scenic park of interconnected islands, designed with families in mind. The park offers multiple boat ramps, open shelters and a shoreline. DC Everest Park, at the south end of Wausau’s 3rd Avenue, offers a boat landing and is the home of the Wausauqua Water-Ski shows in the summer.
One of the top whitewater courses in the United States is located in Downtown Wausau on the Wisconsin River. This water-controlled course is open May through September and is host to national and world-class kayak competitions each summer. Wausau Canoe/Kayak Corporation, based out of Whitewater Park in downtown Wausau, is one of the top whitewater programs in the United States. The Wisconsin River is also a prime fishing spot for muskie, northern pike, walleye and small-mouthed bass anglers.
Big Rib River
The Big Rib River originates in Taylor County near Rib Falls, but soon enters the upper reaches of Marathon County, being fed by smaller creeks as it eventually finds Lake Wausau. During the heyday of lumbering in Marathon County, the Big Rib River was one of the powerhouse streams that worked hard to give energy to the sawmills and gristmills of small communities. Today, the Big Rib River is described as “rich and pristine”. The fish population changes with the depth and flow of the river. Muskie, small-mouthed bass, northern pike and walleye can be found in the Big Rib River.
Wisconsin River, photo provided by TJ McManus
Big Eau Pleine Reservoir
Big Eau Pleine Park covers more than 2,000 acres of woodland peninsula on the north shore of the Big Eau Pleine Reservoir. Most of the land is undeveloped, supporting whitetail deer, black bear, raccoon and ruffed grouse. Amenities include three boat landings, a swimming beach, nine miles of hiking and biking trails, picnic tables, picnic shelters, outhouses, tent sites, trailer sites, dressing rooms, nature trails, cross-country skiing and a playground.
Eau Claire River
Dells of the Eau Claire Park features a rock gorge carved by the continuous rush of the Eau Claire River rapids and creates a wild and scenic backdrop for camping, hiking and picnicking. A quieter stretch of river away from the rapids and falls is used as a swimming area. The Dells of Eau Claire has been preserved as a state natural area. The park’s name might confuse those trying to locate it. This is not “the Dells” that are so well-known in Wisconsin; those Dells are located on the Wisconsin River. The Dells of the Eau Claire is located on the Eau Claire River, just east of Wausau in Marathon County, and offers a campground, trails and swimming beach. Visitors will also see rock formations surrounded by cascading water and unusual plants.
Loggers Landing Waterpark
Touted as the largest of its kind in northern Wisconsin, the waterpark, located in the Grand Lodge by Stoney Creek, offers
Lake DuBay, photo provided by Tracey Carlson more than 50,000 square feet of indoor aquatic fun for adults and children alike. Available to both overnight guests and daytrip visitors, the waterpark’s signature attraction is a massive water-dumping feature, complete with water geysers, two body slides, rope and net crawls. Children will get the surprise of their life when an 800-gallon tipping water bucket dumps on them every three to eight minutes. The best part is that more than 200 kids can play in this enormous water area at one time.
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Loggers Landing Waterpark, photo provided by Keith DuPuis
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Agriculture in Marathon County
by Karen Nerison
arathon County has a strong agricultural heritage. Known internationally as a provider of quality dairy and ginseng products and prized cattle genetics, county leaders are not resting on their laurels. Innovative programs such as the Partnership for Progressive Agriculture (PPA), Dairyland State Academy, Inc (DSA).; and Northcentral Technical College’s Agriculture Center of Excellence, demonstrate the commitment and optimism you’ll find in Marathon County. The Wisconsin Farm Progress/Farm Technology Days show has been held annually since 1954. The show, which has grown into Wisconsin’s largest outdoor farm show, is held on a different farm each year. Thirty-eight counties have hosted the show, with Waupaca County leading the way with four shows. The 1954 and 1955 shows were held on the same site. Dodge County, Rock County, and as of July 2011, Marathon County will tie for second place, each with three shows hosted. The agricultural community appreciates the farmers who have opened their homes and farms over the years. Partnership for Progressive Agriculture is in place to serve as a catalyst for Marathon County agriculture. Its vision is to bring together diverse members of Marathon County’s agribusiness community to: l l
stimulate agricultural economic development. assist entrepreneurial efforts.
l l l l
encourage advocacy and communication among/for agribusinesses. communicate, educate and promote contributions made by agribusinesses to the local economy and communities. foster responsible stewardship of land. facilitate creative, progressive and innovative agricultural activity.
Dairyland State Academy (DSA) has a goal of reversing the loss of family dairy farms in the north central region of Wisconsin by growing a new generation of dairy farmers, revitalizing existent farms and raising awareness about the importance of Wisconsin dairying. The
vision of DSA is to have a working dairy farm (student laboratory) with freestall and grazing operations, complete with dairy buildings, equipment and systems, classrooms, meeting spaces, and public viewing areas. Together with the NTC dairy science curriculum, this will create a “center of excellence” in dairy education for the region. This is a partnership with NTC, University of Wisconsin-Marathon County, University of Wisconsin Extension and University of WisconsinRiver Falls. Agriculture, and specifically dairy, plays a significant role in virtually every facet of our lives. From job creation and taxable income, from milk sales to secondary impact activities such as cheese production and other food processing, agriculture serves people. The diminishing number of family farms is having economic repercussions throughout the nation and in Wisconsin particularly.
In addition to the natural beauty of the landscape, the climate and terrain permit a diversity of crops to be grown in the Wausau Area. In contrast to the level plains that permit large acreages of wheat and corn, central Wisconsin soil provides excellent growing conditions for many fruits, vegetables and evergreens. Farms and orchards surrounding the Wausau area produce potatoes, corn, strawberries, apples, pumpkins, ginseng and Christmas trees. During the summer, you can pick fresh vegetables and fruit for eating or preserving at several area farms. In the fall, there are orchards with tree-ripened apples and beginning the day after Thanksgiving, your family can take to the fields with a saw to select the perfect Christmas
tree from one of the many tree farms nestled among the wooded hillsides of the surrounding area. Ginseng is part of what makes Marathon County unique. The county is well known for ginseng, a root used for 5,000 years for health benefits in beverages and food. Central Wisconsin exports 95 percent of the ginseng root from the United States. Ginseng farmers tend a crop for four years, and in the summer tarps cover the fields from direct sunlight. One of the larger ginseng wholesalers is Hsu’s Ginseng Enterprises Inc, located north of Wausau on County Highway W. The Ingwal S. Horgen Farm Museum, located in Marathon Park, was established on July 31, 1965. Ingwal S. Horgen, Park Commissioner at the time, began collecting farm equipment, hand tools, household utensils and other related items. In 1974, the present facility was constructed to house the collection. Success in central Wisconsin has come from the soil. This fascinating collection of artifacts from the agricultural history of Marathon County is intended to be educational and entertaining. The display is well organized and labeled for easy viewing. Van Der Geest Farm Tours are available to increase the overall understanding of the importance of the agricultural industry. The Van Der Geest Dairy strives to increase public awareness, therefore the entire milking operation can be viewed from a “catwalk” above the cattle, which allows observation without disruption to the dairy activities. Over 30 years ago, Gary and Mary Kay Van Der Geest purchased this farm with 120 acres and a 17-cow, wood stall barn. The business originated with
Farmer’s Market, photo provided by Candice Schneider purchasing and selling fine herds of dairy cattle with a two-milking guarantee. Today, through expansion steps, the farm is a family operation that has evolved into 4,000 acres of cropland and 3,000 Holstein dairy cattle. The fourgeneration business was built on a quality reputation of service to family dairy farms and commitment to the environment with emphasis on the importance of agriculture. Paulson’s Pumpkin Patch in Mosinee includes two pumpkin patches. One is a pick in the field and the other consists of pumpkins already gathered from the field. It also features a corn maze, wagon rides, haunted trail, gift shop, snacks and refreshment stand, picnic area, farm animals and is open for school tours. Willow Springs Garden is located just north of Wausau. It features a pumpkin patch-already gathered from the field, corn maze, haunted corn maze, kiddie
(mini) corn maze, straw or hay bale maze, tractor-pulled hay rides, concession stand, picnic area, petting zoo and farm animals. It is available for birthday parties, weddings and school tours. Wilke’s Xtra Sweet Acres, located north of Wausau, has sixty acres of vegetables, which are sold from the Wilke farm or farmers’ markets around the region. They have bedding plants, annuals, perennials and hanging baskets available mid-May thru June. They also feature a corn maze, pumpkin patch and hayrides mid-September through the end of October. There is also a haunted corn maze available on the weekends leading up to Halloween. The Wausau Farmer’s Market on River Drive near downtown Wausau opens in May and runs through October each year. Each Wednesday and Saturday, you will find farmers and vendors offering bedding plants, fresh fruits
and vegetables, fresh and frozen meats, bakery, cheese, flowers and more. This is Wausau’s oldest market, having been in operation for more than 25 years. The Village of Weston’s Farmer’s Market runs May through October. The farmer’s market, which is held at Farmer’s Market Park, is located next to the Village Municipal Center, and is open every Tuesday and Saturday until sold out. The market currently offers wonderful fruits, vegetables, flowers, plants, meat, bakery goods and other unique items. So building the passion that the early farmers had in Marathon County, the persistence and business savvy continues to grow the tradition of agriculture through education and hard work. Agriculture has experienced many ups and downs, but is still vitally important to the regional economy.
Marathon County Agriculture At-A-Glance
Ranks first in the state in milk production, cultivated ginseng sales and forage production land.
Market value of farm production is $307.4 million annually.
.10,427 jobs in agriculture – just over 12 percent of the county’s workforce.
Represents $1.24 billion in economic impact – about 15 percent of the county total.
18 plants process dairy products.
.490,628 acres of farmland in Wisconsin’s largest county – over one million total acres.
Source: www.marathonfarmtech.com 2011
by Karen Nerison
he Grand Theater originally opened in 1927 as an opera house. The Grand Theater, located at 415 4th Street in downtown Wausau, is a beautiful Classical-Revival structure containing stunning examples of colonnades, marble statuettes and a solid Bedford limestone facade. In 1987, a community-sponsored restoration project brought the theater back to its past glory. Included with that, a fully computerized lighting and sound system and extensive stage rigging were added to the structure. The theater hosts Broadway shows, national touring acts and local productions and concerts.
The Arts Block
Woodson Art Museum, photo provided by Amy Beck
The Grand Theater expanded the arts housed in the Grand Theater to include the Great Hall, the B.A. & Esther Greenheck Lounge, the Caroline S. Mark Gallery and the Loft, and is now referred to as The Arts Block. The Wausau Area Performing Arts Foundation is housed here and makes our region vital and vibrant. Since 1972, the Performing Arts Foundation has been
working to promote excellence in the performing arts in North Central Wisconsin, reaching over 150,000 people each year with performances and instructional programs.
Wausau’s Artrageous Weekend TM
Wausau’s Artrageous Weekend TM celebrates the visual arts at their finest, comprises three separate events – Art in the Park, Festival of Arts and Birds in Art – held at three different sites around the city. All three events are promoted jointly under the umbrella title of Wausau’s Artrageous Weekend TM. Art in the Park brings together more than 120 exhibitors in the East Gate Hall and Exhibition Building in Marathon Park. Pottery, painting, photography, fine woodcraft, weaving and stained glass are just a few of the many art mediums that attract visitors to this lively venue. Artist demonstrations and assorted food and beverage selections are provided on-site both days. The Festival of Arts, held on the 3rd Street corridor and 400 Block in downtown Wausau, presents work by over 100 juried fine artists representing a variety of mediums. These include ceramics, fiber, glass, graphics, jewelry, metals, painting, paper, photography, sculpture, wood and more. The festive browse-orbuy atmosphere is enhanced by artist demonstrations, on-stage and strolling performers, a hands-on children’s art area, young collector’s area, silent auction and food stands. Opening weekend events of the Birds in Art exhibition at the Woodson Art Museum coincide with Wausau’s Artrageous Weekend TM . This perennial autumn avian favorite features paintings, graphics and sculptures created by artists who bring a global perspective to their passion for birds.
Woodson Art Museum
The museum’s permanent collection soars in celebration of nature with historic and contemporary paintings, sculptures and works on paper that focus on birds. The annual Birds in Art exhibition in September and October is worth crowing about and attracts both international artists and visitors. Located at 700 North 12th Street in Wausau, the museum offers stately gardens dotted with sculptures that invite visitors to “outdoor galleries.” Follow brick pathways through this ever-changing, ever-growing natural exhibit. You’ll enjoy exploring this outdoor gallery set against the backdrop of the changing seasons. Year-round, changing exhibitions provide a wide variety of fine art experiences. Educational opportunities abound for visitors of all ages through guided tours and demonstrations, lectures, storytelling and plenty of hands-on activities.
Center for the Visual Arts
The Center for the Visual Arts, housed in a registered Landmark building at 427 4th Street in Wausau, provides exhibition space for local and regional artists in all artistic media. The center also features thematic exhibits throughout the year and offers classes in all art media to all age groups.
l ar Ma ided by Elaine
e nk Ha h p ided by Jose
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Photo provided by Roger Zimmermann
Outdoor Winter Recreation
arathon County, Wisconsin is the perfect place to enjoy a multitude of outdoor winter activities. Besides top of mind activities such as downhill skiing and sledding, Marathon County offers so much more. From snowmobiling, to tubing, to snowshoeing, to ice fishing, the region offers plenty of winter thrills.
Granite Peak Ski Area, located just outside of the City of Wausau, features challenging chutes and tree skiing, as well as a full-terrain park. Located on the north side of Rib Mountain, the alpine environment is one of the largest ski areas in the Midwest. With a 700-foot vertical drop, Granite Peak is the tallest ski slope in the state. A total of 74 runs are spread over the face of the mountain. There are acres of wide-open beginner runs, mile-long intermediate cruising runs, two mogul runs, six terrain parks with dozens of hits, jumps, rails and other terrain features. Granite Peak Ski Area offers super-steep expert chutes and tree skiing glades. With its northwoods location, Granite Peak Ski Area receives more than its share of natural snow. However, in order to ensure fantastic early season skiing, as well as plentiful snow for skiing through the end of March, more than 500 advanced technology snowguns supplement natureâ€™s bounty of snow. This
Photo provided by Joseph Hanke means that, year after year, Granite Peak Ski Area will have the best and most reliable snow in the region, from mid-November through the end of March.
Along with downhill skiing, central Wisconsin offers some of the best cross-country skiing in the state. Marathon County maintains five cross-country ski trails totaling 48 miles of trails. Think about rolling uplands smoothed by glaciers, covered by 360,000 acres of timber, with bluffs cut by the Wisconsin River. Add a deep blanket of snow and you have some of the best crosscountry skiing in the state. If you are a beginner or advanced skier, you can find a trail to suit your skill level in Marathon County. Maps are posted at each site, showing the trails and their difficulty level. Nine-Mile County Forest Recreation Area is a heavilywooded trail, which offers a unique combination of forest types and scenic views. The well-groomed trail system has been widened to accommodate skaters and diagonal skiers. Trails have been designed to provide a challenge for skiers of all abilities. There is a trailhead building with indoor facilities and plenty of room for parking. The heated trailhead building provides a changing area, restrooms, a spacious lounging area, hot and cold drinks and ski equipment rentals. Rental services are available only during building hours.
Even though Nine-Mile County Forest Recreation Area is the only course which requires purchasing a pass, donation boxes have been posted at each trail to cover grooming and other maintenance costs. Trails are groomed by the Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department in cooperation with the Wausau Nordic Skiers, Inc. One of the most remote trails in Marathon County is the trail which goes through Big Eau Pleine County Park, a peninsula which extends into the Eau Pleine Reservoir. The trail follows the shoreline, and the terrain is rolling and wooded. This trail system is not groomed, but the public is welcome to ski on the trails. A regional favorite because of its in-town location, are the Sylvan Hill Park trails, which adjoin the Sylvan Hill tubing hill area and chalet. This area features 3.5 miles of cross country skiing. During the season, this trail system is groomed once a week with a single track and a skating lane. A donation is requested to help cover the cost of grooming. The Ringle Trail is great for beginners and for those who want to enjoy classical skiing across gently rolling terrain. This trail takes skiers through scenic hardwood forests and is considered by many to be a hidden gem. This trail system is not groomed, but the public is welcome to ski on the trails.
Sylvan Hill Winter Recreation Area, the only tubing hill in central Wisconsin, has been described as “a water park built of snow,” with three straight runs 1,800 feet high and three curved “lazy river” runs. The hill offers six rides and two wire tows to
pull you back up the hill. Bring your family and friends to try out Marathon County’s unique winter recreation opportunity.
Snowmobiling enthusiasts will find a variety of terrain and scenery unequaled anywhere in the state. Marathon County boasts over 800 miles of groomed trails. Snowmobiling is one of the most exciting ways to experience Marathon County’s beauty during the winter. Driving one of today’s snowmobiles is a cross between riding a motorcycle, driving a car and steering a sled with handlebars, except that you control the speed at all times.
Another winter sport you may like to try in the area is snowshoeing. With all of the trails through woods and parks, it’s the perfect sport for enjoying area wildlife and scenery. Snowshoeing makes an excellent family sport. Many area rental and sport shops have sets of snowshoes for sale or rent at reasonable rates.
There are several options for outdoor ice skating and hockey. Most of the outdoor recreational rinks are lighted and have warming houses.
Each winter, a new city appears on the many bodies of water in Marathon County when ice fishing enthusiasts raise their shanties as soon as the ice will support them.
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More Ways to Live Life in the Moment by Karen Nerison sphere is located. It is there that the 90th Meridian of the longitude bisects the 45th parallel of latitude - meaning it is exactly halfway between the North Pole and the Equator, and is a quarter of the way around the earth from Greenwich, England. This is one of only four places like this in the entire world with two being under water and the other in China. The site has been marked with a geological marker in a small park. Nine Mile, photo provided by Heather Lau
Bicyclists enjoy a wide variety of terrain in Marathon County. There are many miles of paved city, county and town roads providing hard-surfaced routes for novice to skilled riders. The Wausau Wheelers, a local biking club, sponsors regularly scheduled rides for both mountain and touring enthusiasts. Nine Mile Recreation Area is open for mountain biking from May 1 through October 15. Both cross-country and snowmobiling trails are marked and mowed during the summer months to provide over 43 km of varying terrain for biking enthusiasts. Silent Sports magazine calls the Nine Mile area “...a wonderful place as a mountain biking destination.”
There are several campgrounds available in Marathon County including Rib Mountain State Park, Lake DuBay Shores Campground, Dells of the Eau Claire Park, Marathon Park and Big Eau Pleine Park.
Center of the Northwestern Hemisphere
Visit Poniatowski in the Town of Reitbrock, Marathon County where the exact geographic center of the northern half of the Western Hemi-
A 300 year old sport that originated in Scotland found a niche in Marathon County more than 70 years ago on area lakes and streams. Today, the Wausau Curling Club, located in Marathon County Park, is home to more than 300 local area members and host bonspiels (tournaments) many weekends from early November through late March. Curling is now an Olympic sport with teams competing in events around the world. But the heart of curling is its social club play. Teams of four take to the ice at the Wausau Curling Club to slide 42 pound “stones” into a target area called “the house.” Points are tallied for the team with the stones closest to the center of the house. There are leagues for rookies, men’s teams, women’s teams, and open and mixed teams. Seniors play three mornings a week during the season.
From mid-September through the middle of October, Marathon County comes alive with a blaze of dazzling color. Brilliant hues of orange, red and yellow characterize the Fall season. To get the most of this breathtaking sight, try: Rib Mountain State Park - The view of the Wisconsin River Valley from the 60-foot observation tower at the top of the mountain rates as a must-see during
the Fall color season. Oak Island Park - Located on the east side of Wausau right on the Wisconsin River. Big Eau Pleine Park - A peninsula in the Eau Pleine Reservoir, it encompasses 1,450 wooded acres. Dells of the Eau Claire Park - Listed as a scientific area by the State of Wisconsin, Dells of the Eau Claire has many examples of rare plants and unique geology. Highway 51 Between Wausau and Merrill - Wooded hills border the road and there are several spectacular vantage points.
The Wausau region offers eight distinctly different courses for all golfing abilities. With three 18-hole and three nine-hole courses open to the public, there’s a diversity of challenging greens for avid duffers. Several courses include driving ranges and most rent riding carts. Green fees vary, but most courses provide student and senior citizen rates.
The Warren District is named after sawmill owner Andrew Warren, who purchased the land in 1853. The 62 buildings, mostly homes built between 1868 and 1934, comprise this architecturally significant area in the heart of Wausau’s east side. Buildings from the Prairie School of Architecture exist here as well as examples of Greek Revival, Italianate, Queen Anne and Neo-Classical Revival styles. The two homes that comprise the Marathon Country Historical Museum, Society and Library are located in this district. East of the Warren District is the even larger East Hill District, named for the hill rising abruptly on the east side of the Wisconsin River Valley. More than 100 houses covering a 30-block radius
Wild Turkeys, photo provided by Nancy Passini went up between 1874 and 1930. Buildings styles include Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Classical Revival, Georgian Revival, Tudors Revival, and more. The Woodson Art Museum is located at 700 North Twelve Street in this district.
In 1954, Leigh Yawkey Woodson and her daughters donated the home of her late parents, lumberman, Cyrus C. Yawkey and Alice Richardson Yawkey, to the Historical Society. The house was built in 1900 in the Classical Revival style and later remodeled in the Prairie School style. In 1974, the house, which is located at 403 McIndoe Street in Wausau, was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Yawkey House was renovated to its original rooms, an authentically furnished music room, dining room and parlor give a taste of gracious living of a bygone era. The formal gardens display a colorful array of native wildflowers, perennials, annuals and herbs. The carriage house is open throughout the summer. In 1995, the Historical Society purchased the home of A.P. Woodson and Leigh Yawkey Woodson, located across the street at 410 McIndoe Street. The house was built in 1914 and designed by Prairie School architect, George W. Maher. The Woodson House contains the Historical Society’s library, archives, administrative offices, artifact storage and the educational exhibit area.
If you’re interested in single horsepower transportation, you’ll find several options available in Marathon County. Equestrians can meander through quiet fields and woods at a leisurely pace on horseback. If you want to enjoy the oldfashioned fun of a sleigh or hay ride, a number of farms can hitch up teams for your family or group.
The woods and hills in Marathon County are filled with wildlife and game birds. Ideal natural conditions provide some excellent areas for hunting. Marathon County and the Wausau area benefit from both county forestry management units and state wildlife areas that offer public hunting access.
Ice Age Trail
Extremely rare today, mammoth sightings were common 10,000 years ago crossing what is now known as the Ice Age Trail. The Ice Age Trail, 1,000 miles long, outlines the last glacial advance into Wisconsin and is only one of eight National scenic trails in the United States. You can hike it when it’s warm or strap on the snowshoes in the winter. The developed section of the Ice Age Trail in Marathon County is currently 35 miles long and consists of five segments. The Eau Claire Dells segment (5-3/4 miles long) is the most popular and originates at the county park of the same name.
Don’t leave the bicycles behind; we’ve got the scenic Mountain-Bay Trail waiting for you. This former railroad corridor is now a 14-foot wide trail with a crushed granite surface that stretches 83 miles from Weston to Green Bay.
Rib Mountain State Park
There’s more than one reason to visit the fourth highest point in Wisconsin. Rib Mountain State Park has camping, hiking trails, concerts in the summer, snowshoeing in the winter and a spectacular view of our Wisconsin River Valley anytime of the year. Climb the stairs to the top of the observation tower to see breathtaking Fall colors in late September and early October.
Water Ski Show
Watch an exciting display of skills as the “Water Walkers” perform in-line formations, pyramids and more. Performances are from June through August at DC Everest Park and weekly at Lake DuBay from July through August. Shows last one hour and donations are accepted. Bring a blanket or lawn chair. Concessions are available.
Baseball the way it was meant to be. No overpaid athletes or high-priced tickets. Catch a game at historic Athletic Park and enjoy an afternoon or evening of baseball, hot dogs and cold beverages. The Wisconsin Woodchucks are the reigning Northwoods College League champions and play from June through August. The Woodchucks are one of eight teams in the Northwoods College League.
by Karen Nerison
istoric downtown Wausau is the county seat of Marathon County. The downtown emerged after the sawmills were built along the Wisconsin River in the 1800’s and the city prospered into the 1900’s. Wausau became the county seat in 1850, and although the original Marathon County Courthouse building is no longer standing, a newer building at 500 Forest Street houses many county government departments and the county jail. City government is also located downtown in an Art Deco style City Hall building at 407 Grant Street. Retail businesses, professional and government offices, the county library, museums, attractions, churches and parks make up the landscape of the downtown along the Wisconsin River. Many of the churches boast architectural designs from Tudor Revival to High Victorian Gothic styles. The Grand Theater built in 1927 is located in the heart of downtown. Special celebrations, concerts, festivals and events are held on the city square throughout the year. Downtown features over sixty stores located within the Wausau Center Mall and along the Pedestrian Mall down 3rd Street to adjacent side streets. The Pedestrian Mall is a brickpaved walkway extending from the front doors of the mall where you will find the beginning of specialty stores, attractions, pubs, businesses and restaurants housed in historic buildings unique to the downtown. A great example of this is the historic Washington Square building at 300 Washington Street. For more information about downtown Wausau please visit www.wausauriverdistrict.com.
The Art of Downtown Living
330 Third Street, Wausau 715.849.8480 - www.palladianwausau.com
300 Block Third Street Historic Downtown Wausau
110 S. 1st Ave. • Wausau 715-845-4351 2200 Oriole Ln. • Rib Mountain 715-842-8469 3807 Schofield Ave. • Weston 715-359-3994 www.covantagecu.org
About the Region Marathon County, created in 1850, is named after the Greek city of Marathon. Located in central Wisconsin, the county seat is Wausau. Land Area: 1,544.96 sq miles Water Area: 31.18 sq miles Elevation: 1,195 ft at Wausau, 1,924 ft at Queens Chair on Rib Mountain (fourth highest point in Wisconsin), 1,605 ft at Upper Mosinee Hill Geographical Province: Northern Highland Natural Vegetation: Mostly maple, hemlock, and yellow birch; a narrow strip with white and red pine in center. Southwest: small area of conifer swamp.
the Best of Both Worlds. I chose Aspirus.
Population 1930: 1970: 1980: 1990: 2000:
70,629 97,457 111,270 115,400 125,834
Persons Per Household In Marathon County: 2.60 Home Rental (no utilities): $600-650 Apartment Rental (no utilities): $500-550 Apartment Rental (heat included): $600-650 Executive Apartment Rental: $700-900 Median Sales Price of Home: $143,124 Estimated Construction Cost: $120-$175 sq. ft. Purchase Costs/Average Price New Home Basic ranch style home, 3 bedroom: $130,000-$140,000 Executive home, 4 bedroom: $250,000-$500,000 (Example amenities: wooded lot, Terra-Lok driveway, top-of-the-line kitchen cabinets, ceramic tile, master bedroom/bath, walk-in closets)
Custom-made, luxury home, 4 bedroom: $400,000 - $1,500,000 (Example amenities:grand cathedral/vaulted ceilings, free-standing staircases, spacious foyers, master suites, numerous built-ins and fireplaces)
County tax rates: www.co.marathon.wi.us/is/trs
Athens School District: 516 Colby School District: 987 D.C. Everest Area School District: 5,676 Edgar School District: 667 Marathon School District: 679 Mosinee School District: 2,174 Newman Catholic Schools: 710 Spencer School District: 747 Wausau School District: 8,681
Whoever said “You can’t have it all” has probably never seen a place like ours. Located at the heart of north central Wisconsin, the Wausau area is surrounded by natural beauty and a surprising combination of big-city lifestyle amenities and small-town hospitality. It’s also home to Aspirus Wausau Hospital – the heart and soul of the community’s local health care. Best known for our world-class cardiovascular program, Aspirus Wausau Hospital also provides leading edge cancer, trauma, women’s health and neurological care. And as a Magnet facility, the quality of our care and our career opportunities are second to none. Find yourself in Wausau, and here at Aspirus, and discover the best of all worlds. Visit www.aspirusjobs.org to learn more or apply online now. EOE.
THE COM 3/1/2 9112 ASP 3.5” Mary
Resources Marathon County Communities Athens Brokaw Colby Edgar Kronenwetter Marathon City Merrill Mosinee Rib Mountain Rothschild Schofield Spencer Weston Wausau
715-257-9170 715-675-8712 715-223-4435 715-352-2891 715-693-4200 715-443-2221 715-536-5594 715-693-2275 715-842-0983 715-359-3660 715-359-5230 715-659-5423 715-359-6114 715-261-6500
Athens School District Colby School District D. C. Everest School District Edgar School District Marathon Area School District Mosinee School District Newman Catholic Schools Northland Lutheran High School Spencer School District Stratford School District Wausau School District
Relocating to the
www.athenswis.com www.villageofbrokaw.com www.ci.colby.wi.us www.vil.edgar.wi.us www.kronenwetter.org www.marathoncity.org www.ci.merrill.wi.us www.mosinee.wi.us www.townofribmountain.org www.rothschildwi.com www.cityofschofield.org www.vil.spencer.wi.us www.westonwisconsin.org www.ci.wausau.wi.us
715-257-7511 715-223-2301 715-359-4221 715-352-2352 715-443-2226 715-693-4582 715-845-5735 715-359-3400 715-659-5347 715-687-3535 715-261-0505
Smart Choice! WE’RE the RIGHT CHOICE to help your transition! Home Loans
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Auto Loans Checking/Savings Credit/Debit/ATM Retirement Accounts
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you’re looking for to make your move feel L IKE H OME AGAIN ! Call or visit us online
900 S. 17th Avenue, Wausau Member
715-842-2900 • 866-574-9230
Cardinal Stritch University 800-383-3308 Concordia University Wisconsin 715-426-5747 Edgewood College 608-663-4231 Globe University 715-301-1300 Marian University 920-923-7159 Northcentral Technical College 715-675-3331 Rasmussen College 715-841-8000 State College of Beauty Culture Inc 715-845-2888 715-261-6235 UW-Marathon County 715-675-2775 Upper Iowa University UWSP Continuing Education 715-843-5333 UW-Stout 715-232-1649 Viterbo University 888-848-3726
Fre sh for you is what we do! Wausau
110 S. 17th Avenue Wausau, WI
Store: 715-849-8744 (849-TRIG) Pharmacy: 715-848-9066 Floral and Home: 715-849-9077 Cellar 70: 715-849-9044
IROW Shredding Recycling & Waste Services 715-693-7123 Veolia Environmental Services 715-359-6637 Waste Management 888-960-0008
Wausau is the major intersection of two primary highways. I-39\US 51 runs north south (four lanes from Beloit to Tomahawk) and Highway 29 runs east-west (four lanes Green Bay to I-94 near Eau Claire).
City Pages Wausau Daily Herald WSAU (radio) WSPT (radio) WAOW – Newsline 9 WSAW – NewsChannel 7 WFSX – Fox 55 WJFW – TV 12
715-845-5171 715-842-2101 715-842-1672 715-341-9800 715-842-2251 715-845-4211 715-847-1155 715-365-8812
Charter Communications Frontier Solarus
715-301-4087 715-847-1685 715-421-8111
Wisconsin Public Service Water/Sewer - Contact Municipality
Central Wisconsin Airport (Mosinee) Wausau Municipal Airport
All American Taxi (Schofield) Metro Cabs (Wausau) Taxi Time (Wausau) Wausau Taxi (Wausau)
715-355-0899 715-849-4222 715-675-3500 715-849-8294
Attractions/Events Wausau/Central Wisconsin Convention & Visitors Bureau 715-355-8788, www.visitwausau.com Wausau Area Events 715-845-0748, www.wausauareaevents.org
CONNECTING YOU TO THE WORLD
Flights daily to Minneapolis/St. Paul, Detroit, and Chicago AMERICAN AIRLINES
Restaurant, Lounge, and Gift Shop Convenient Parking • Car Rental and Taxi Service
1-800-221-1212 :: 200 CWA Drive :: Mosinee, WI 54455 :: www.fly-cwa.org :: 715-693-2147 ::
Client: Central Wisconsin Airport (CWA)
Business Solid growth best describes the economic climate of Marathon County. Unlike many parts of the state and country, the local economy tends to avoid financial peaks and valleys. This is in part due to the diversity of business. Early dependence on forest wealth is still reflected in many county industries, but the healthy economy of today is characterized by industrial diversification and the utilization of all natural resources. There are several industry clusters located within Marathon County, including processed foods, automotive, financial services, furniture and motor driven products. Marathon County also boasts a well-trained, growing population of nearly 136,000. For more in-depth business and economic information, please refer to: The Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce 715-845-6231 www.wausauchamber.com McDEVCO (Marathon County Development Corporation) 715-845-6231 www.mcdevco.org
in our commitment to the community and to better health care UMR, a UnitedHealthcare company, is the countryâ€™s largest third-party administrator for self-funded employee health benefits. Our mission is to help people live healthier lives. Our joy is being headquartered in central Wisconsin where the values of hard work, compassion for others and common sense areâ€Ś well, commonplace. We welcome you to central Wisconsin.
Advertiser’s Index AbbyBank.. ............................................................................... 7 American Family Insurance.................................................. 10 Aspirus Clinics.. ..................................................................... 11 Aspirus Wausau Hospital...................................................... 34 Central Wisconsin Regional Airport.. ................................... 36 Charter Communications........................................................ 2 Cherry Tree Dental of Wausau.. ............................................ 20 Coldwell Banker Action - Jennifer Gordon.......................... 18 Compass Properties, The Palladian Condominiums............ 32 CoVantage Credit Union....................................................... 33 Dream Theatres....................................................................... 5 Edgewood College.. .................................................................. 9 envision eyecare LLC . .......................................................... 13 Envision Marketing Communications LLC........................... 18 Evergreen Civil Engineering LLC.......................................... 19 First Weber Group - Karen Harvey....................................... 25 Globe University.. .................................................................... 9 Grand Lodge by Stoney Creek.. ............................................. 21 Graebel Van Lines Inc ......................................................... 35 Harley-Davidson of Wausau.. ................................................ 17 Heel To Toe Comfort Shoes & Repair................................... 19 Intercity State Bank ............................................................. 28 LandArt.................................................................................. 24
Marshfield Clinic.....................................................Back Cover McDEVCO............................................................................... 33 Ministry Saint Clare’s Hospital.. ........................................... 12 Newman Catholic Schools.. ..................................................... 6 Rasmussen College.................................................................. 8 Red Granite Builders - Wausau Homes.. ............................... 18 Rib Mountain, Town of . ....................................................... 27 Ruder Ware............................................................................ 29 Sons of the Carpenter Hardwood Floors.............................. 25 State College of Beauty Culture Inc.. .................................... 39 Study Guide Tutoring Services LLC........................................ 6 Sun Printing Inc.................................................................... 38 The Samuels Group Inc........................................................... 5 Time Federal Savings Bank................................................... 35 Trig’s...................................................................................... 35 United Way’s 211.. ................................................................. 14 UMR.. ...................................................................................... 37 UWSP Business at UWMC........................................................ 8 UWSP Continuing Education ............................................... 37 Vigil Trust & Financial Advocacy ........................................ 33 Wausau Child Care.. ............................................................... 15 Wausau Church of the Nazarene.......................................... 33 Woodson YMCA..................................................................... 29
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Collaborate with us on your next project Call 7 1 5 . 8 4 5 . 4 9 1 1 , stop by at 1800 Grand Avenue, Wausau, or r e q u e s t a m e e t i n g a t y o u r o f f i c e
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1930 Grand Ave. Wausau, WI 54403 Admissions: (715) 849-5368 Appointments: (715) 845-2888 Fax: (715) 848-2121 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.statecollegeofbeauty.com
Moving lesson #1 There comes a time when you will ask: “Do I really need all this stuff?”
Moving lesson #2 You will need a new doctor. Trust the primary care physicians at Marshfield Clinic to keep you healthy, no matter what you bring with you.
Wausau – Weston – Stettin – Mosinee 1-800-847-0016