Jason Schulte is a reporter for the New Richmond News since February 2015. Prior to that he spent eight years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth. His duties with the News will include covering news out of Hammond and Roberts along with action from St. Croix County court system. He lives in Roberts.
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Wanting to help others is what led Elvin Kulenkamp into a second career. Kulenkamp moved to Pierce County in 1975 from Taylors Falls, Minn., where he grew up. He first started out as a farmer, but that didn't last long. "We had a scanner and you would hear the crash details, and you would sit there waiting, listening for the help to arrive," he explained.
PLUM CITY -- The Plum City School Board last month approved implementing a PreK-12 notification system to start this month. District Administrator Mark Luebker explained it's a telephone and e-mail messaging service used by schools to quickly and effectively communicate important school news to parents.
Chuck Balzer is proud to say he started Pierce County's Long-Term Support 25 years ago when he was first hired. Now, as the calendar turned to 2009, Balzer said he has seen the program change drastically. And based on that, and other factors, he announced his retirement, effective Friday. "I'm going to miss the people -- both the consumers and the clients," he said. "Working for the county and human services has been like a second family. I have nothing but great thoughts about the folks that I work with." Balzer grew up in Red Wing and graduated from UW-River Falls.
A former Prescott man was sentenced Monday in Pierce County Circuit Court to 36 months prison and four years extended supervision upon release for two counts of possession of child pornography. Michael D. Condon, Sr., 46, must also complete a sex offender evaluation and comply with all treatment. He also cannot have any contact with anyone under age 18 and have no possession of a computer or access to a computer. "He has a history of law enforcement contacts going back 19 years," explained Circuit Court Judge Robert Wing in his sentencing.
A former Maiden Rock man pled guilty Monday in Pierce County Circuit Court to vehicular homicide by use of a controlled substance. Jeffrey Carlisle, 29, St. Paul, also pled guilty to reckless driving to cause great bodily harm. He will be sentenced on those charges at 1 p.m. Monday, March 9. The charges stem from an April 2007 incident in which Carlisle was involved in a multi-vehicle accident that killed Michele A. Bevier, 42, Prescott. According to the criminal complaint, which was filed in October 2007, Carlisle was driving a 2002 Cadillac Escalade on Hwy.
A Beldenville man was charged last month in Pierce County Circuit Court with felony theft over $10,000, a Class G felony that brings a maximum penalty of $25,000 and/or 10 years prison if found guilty. Gerald A. Langer, 56, has his next scheduled court appearance at 1:45 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 15, for a pre-trial conference. According to the criminal complaint, an Ellsworth man is alleging Langer entered into a contract with him to build a barn and a lean at the victim's residence for a total of $21,850.
Robert Hines initially started his high school career by attending Spring Valley High School. "I was mostly lazy, sleeping through school, talking through study hall," he said. Even the news that he was credit deficient didn't snap him out of it. "I still didn't care," he said. The proverbial light bulb went off when Hines, who turned 18 last month, was told he would be lucky to even graduate with the Class of 2011. "I needed to change something," Hines, the son of Todd Hines and Wendy Wegerer, said. His change came when he dropped out of Spring Valley and enrolled in the Wisconsin Natio
MAIDEN ROCK -- Guests to the Maiden Rock Winery and Cidery earlier this month were welcomed to a different era -- the Medieval Era, to be exact. The business hosted a medieval feast and wassailing of the apple trees on Dec. 6 as part of Stockholm's Country Christmas. Co-owners Herdie Baisden and Carol Wiersma started Maiden Rock Apples in 2000. They added the winery and cidery portion this summer. "I wanted to get closer to the land," explained Baisden, who was in the business world before starting the apple business.
PRESCOTT -- Prescott Mayor Mike Hunter came with good news for those attending the chamber of commerce meeting Wednesday. "The city is in good financial shape," Hunter said. "I'm proud of what we're doing as a city." Hunter also talked about other city highlights during his speech. "I'm very proud of our library," he said. "Freedom Park has been a success beyond my beliefs and the schools are doing good things." Hunter also told chamber members about the city's wish list of improvements, including a multi-purpose trail along Hwy.
There is a student organization at the Ellsworth High School called Just Do Something, a group promoting volunteerism. And by them doing something, fellow students half a world away will see the results. For the last couple of months, the group has been in the process of collecting school and household supplies to send to Afghanistan. The connection is EHS teacher Ryan Casper is currently stationed there as a member of a National Guard outfit out of Duluth, Minn. This is the second "Hearts and Mind" Club Casper has organized.