Bill Kirk was editor of the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth, from 1988 to February, 2015 and is now on staff as a reporter. 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.
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The selection of Pope Francis to lead the world's Roman Catholics is a welcome development, according to two area priests. Father Bill Matzek of St. Mary's Big River church, between Ellsworth and Prescott, said Thursday he was very pleased with the announcement made the previous day, calling it "a good choice." "Pope Francis seems to be concerned with the poor and has worked with the poor," Matzek said of his initial impression about the successor to Pope Benedict. Watch for more information in the print version of the Herald.
A contract with construction manager firm Kraus-Anderson was approved by the Ellsworth School Board Monday. Superintendent Barry Cain said the school district's attorney reviewed the contract and found it to be in order, but asked for specific referendum services to be listed. The firm provided those, plus agreed to a 2.4 percent fee for its overall services and there will be a one percent fee for bonding regarding subcontractors. John Hunek of Kraus-Anderson discussed the role of the construction manager, to be involved in pre-referendum services.
Myths about teenagers who injure themselves were dispelled and signs of the potential for this were presented to Ellsworth high and middle school teachers Wednesday. Although the presentation by guest speaker Jennifer Muehlenkamp, PhD., an assistant professor of psychology at UW-Eau Claire, was directed at educators dealing with students, her message was valuable for parents of teens as well.
SPRING VALLEY--They've been oh, so close for the last half-dozen years and, now, their moment of triumph has come. The Spring Valley High School Ocean Science Bowl team won this year's regional competition at Milwaukee Feb. 9. The team will advance to the national level of the contest in April, also in Milwaukee. Watch for more in the print version of the Herald.
A firm was chosen by the Ellsworth School Board Monday to be construction manager as the ad hoc facilities committee's recommendations continue to be pursued. Although various board members said the district was fortunate to have had interest from all three finalists, whom they described as first-rate, those who spoke favored Kraus-Anderson (KA) to direct the facilities efforts. Representatives from three companies were interviewed during a special board meeting late last month. Read more in the print version of the Herald Feb. 13.
The obstacles to good health for 21-month-old Ava Schutz are so overwhelming that hope seems elusive. Her parents, Jared and Jessa, have been told the Cystic Fibrosis (CF) patient will continue to take the medications and therapy she's now receiving for the rest of her life. They've also been made aware the average life expectancy for such patients is between 25 and 35 years.
The old saying, "It's always darkest before the dawn," is one people who are struggling through life may be able to relate to. Daylight for strugglers from this area appears to be on the horizon with the arrival of the Assistance and Resource Center (ARC). The River Falls-based non-profit organization expanded into the territory covered by the Ellsworth School District effective the first of this year, according to Board Chairperson Lori Rodewald. The ARC provides assistance to people of all ages and from all walks of life--most anybody, Rodewald said Wednesday.
"Brain tumors fear me" has become a kind of rallying cry as six-year-old Aiden Murphy battles a tumor. He's not alone in the fight. There are his parents, Shane and Melissa, plus his sisters, MacKenzie, 15, Preslie, two, and Mia, nine months.
Four bridge overlays, eight guardrail replacements, three box culverts, an upgrade to CTH F and a return to CTH K are on the Pierce County Highway Department road project schedule this construction season. "The county board approved a $7 million bond issue for highway work," Commissioner Chad Johnson said Thursday, reminding the public they can visit www.co.pierce.wi.us/Highway/Highway_Main.html and click on "2013 Road Projects" to be updated on project progress, with road closures highlighted. The four bridge overlays are on CTH EE, 2.6 miles west of CTH D in the Town of Hartland, on CTH N
Improvement projects at four separate locations on Hwys. 63 and 35 in the Pierce County vicinity are coming this construction season. The jobs on Hwy. 63 both involve two-lane bridge replacements, according to Wendy Maves, Northwest Region Project Manager for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's Eau Claire office. The contracts for these new bridges have already been let. Read more in the print version of the Herald Jan. 23.