Bill Kirk has been editor at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth, Wisconsin, since 1988. He holds a bachelors degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He previously worked in the media distribution department at the University of Minnesota's Minneapolis campus and is past editor of The Tri-County News in Osseo, Wisconsin.
- Member for
- 1 year 8 months
Thanksgiving is a holiday meant for people to be mindful of what they're thankful for and an Ellsworth church gives local residents an opportunity to do something about it. The Community Missions Team at English Lutheran Church successfully conducted another of its Thanksgiving Baskets program this month. Pastor Dawn Lindberg, who experienced the effort for the first time, called the response "generous." "Thirty-one 'baskets' went out," Lindberg said, explaining the containers filled with donated goods for needy families are actually boxes. Read more in the print version of the Herald Nov.
It's said being around youths can make an old person feel younger. There are benefits for young people under this arrangement, too. The elderly have developed a lifetime's worth of skills and experience to share. Ellsworth School District officials intend to tap into what senior citizens have to offer by making the Senior Tax Exchange Program (STEP) available in the district.
Renovation of the high school track was discussed by the Ellsworth School Board Monday. A report from Board Member Rick Kornmann of the buildings and grounds committee indicated that committee met with a consultant at the track earlier, saw its degree of disarray and decided to proceed with some borings. The consultant from Inspect, based in Golden Valley, Minn., said Monday the EHS track is over 20-years-old and, like others at many public schools, hasn't had much maintenance. Six soil borings were taken, finding two inches of bituminous pavement and three-to-four inches of an underlay.
The service of veterans was praised during Ellsworth Middle School's annual Veterans Day program Friday. Leading off the "Freedom Is Not Free" theme, EMS Principal Paul Uhren said the school's Freedom Wall is a constant reminder to all of the sacrifices vets have made so U.S. citizens can enjoy the freedoms they do today. Many families have lost members in times of war, Uhren said, inviting those gathered Friday to view their names posted around the EMS cafeteria. Read more in the print version of the Herald Nov. 16.
A common misperception suggests people who live on farms are naïve about some issues. When it comes to youths abusing drugs, Thursday's "Down on the Pharm" town hall meeting in Ellsworth aimed to make that not be the case--for farmers or anyone else.
The elderly have been a constant in Heather Conway's often-changing career. The frequent subjects of her caring are again part of Conway's responsibilities as she succeeded the retiring Kathy Hass in the directorship of Pierce County's Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) earlier this month. Hass established the center approximately five years ago, having previously headed the former county Office on Aging. "People tell me I've got big shoes to fill," Conway said Wednesday in recognition of her predecessor. The new ADRC director said she explains the center as having two sides.
The Ellsworth School Board finalized the district's 2011-12 budget Wednesday. The total school levy in the final budget is $8,597,688, down from the projected total of $8,619,845 presented at the district's annual meeting in August. The final levy figure represents a 9.27 percent change from last year's budget. It was approved for certification by the board, along with the final budget overall. Superintendent Barry Cain told board members, meeting in special session, some of the budget numbers were still estimates in August.
Customers are often surprised Rosemary Matzek is still serving them at M&I Bank in Ellsworth's west business district. Matzek said Thursday she probably would've retired when her husband, Jim, did, but he died 12-and-a-half years ago before it ever happened. So she continued as a bank employee and her 35th year there will be marked with an open house on Friday, Oct. 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., featuring refreshments. "I like to be busy," she explained about staying on-the-job. Read more in the print version of the Herald Oct. 19.
'Safe Routes' update given school board By Bill Kirk An update on the "Safe Routes to Schools" project was given to the Ellsworth School Board early this week. Construction was to begin on the effort, which was jointly promoted by the village, the school district and the former local Rotary club, according to Superintendent Barry Cain. Cain said Thursday a grant received in 2007 extending through 2012 is making the improvements possible. The project involves installation of walkways in the vicinity of the schools within village limits.
Ellsworth Ambulance Service officials have signed a long-term contract with Western Wisconsin Emergency Medical Services (WWEMS). The ambulance service's operating committee updated bylaws to create a joint powers agreement with WWEMS, which is a subsidiary of Regions Hospital in St. Paul, according to Dan Morth, interim local ambulance director. The bylaws had largely been in place since the ambulance service was incorporated in 1978, Morth said Wednesday. Read more in the print version of the Herald Oct. 19.