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TOWN OF GILMAN--The next generation of plumbers in the Bigaouette family is establishing a rural business. Barry Bigaouette has worked with his father, Ed, in plumbing most of his life. But they've been based in the family's home town of Stillwater, Minn., and, now that his dad is about to retire, the son decided to set out on his own where he presently lives. His new Pierce Plumbing, Inc., in the Town of Gilman got underway early this year, he said Wednesday.
Like an overgrown game of musical chairs, several Pierce County government offices are switching places inside various county buildings. If all the remodeling and moving can be equated to the music in that game, it seemed to be stopping last week. And at least three offices are settling into new homes. Both the Pierce County Fair office and the Aging and Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC) have vacated their adjacent spaces on the street level of the county office building in Ellsworth, which will eventually be occupied by Information Technology Services (IT).
A lot of shoe leather has been worn out by the Travelin' Shoes Gospel Choir as they've made their concert rounds over the past three years. But the focus of the 73-member choir isn't on what covers the soles of their feet. It's on helping to fill the stomachs of those in need and nourishing audiences' souls. The Pepin-based choir will return to Ellsworth for the third year Sunday, March 22, to perform in concert at St. Francis Catholic Church at 7 p.m., after a spaghetti dinner is served at 5 p.m.
The Ellsworth School District is in comparatively good condition when it comes to debt, the local school board was told Monday. Board members heard from Lisa Voisin of Robert W. Baird, district financial advisors, about the possible refinancing of a portion of the district's debt. No formal board action was taken. Voisin explained the difference between two funds in the school budget. Fund 38 reflects debt paid within a revenue limit, taking into account such factors as enrollment and state aid.
A mixed interest in the open enrollment program last month was reported by area schools. Two of four school districts (Ellsworth and Spring Valley) had more overall activity than last year at this time, while two others (Elmwood and Plum City) had less activity. Officials from the four districts told the numbers of students from elsewhere who've applied to enter their districts for the 2009-10 term beginning this fall, as well as how many from their districts look to leave. Officials remind the figures are preliminary and will likely change by fall.
No matter what the sky condition, the staff at Freier's Electric and Heating in East Ellsworth is following the sun. The business, which has geared up over the past decade to offer solar energy options for its customers, has begun to realize that goal, owner Scott Freier said Thursday.
The 652nd Engineer Company based at the Army Reserve Center in Ellsworth got ready for what could be a year's deployment in Iraq Sunday, a second mission there for the unit. The Reservists were told to return with honor. The bridge-building unit left the center and were headed to Fort McCoy before they were expected to attach to the 401st from Oklahoma. The last time members of the company here were deployed was in 2003, with four of them later killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Around Christmastime in 2007, Caleb Taplin and his older stepbrother, Donny Brunner, discussed starting a business. They considered various enterprises, said Taplin, an Ellsworth High School senior whose favorite classes at EHS are in business and accounting.
EL PASO--For the past century-and-a-half, the Town of El Paso has served people who made East Central Pierce County their home. Although El Paso was never incorporated, its most populated area numbered as high as 500 in the past, according to information from the El Paso Community Club. Club members plan to mark the town's sesquicentennial with a kickoff event at the local government center at 2 p.m.
SPRING VALLEY -- She's been the Wolves Idol and a Starquest star, and now Riley Bowman could be called the "Cross Country Crooner." Bowman was chosen to sing the National Anthem for the American Birkebeiner cross country ski race in Northern Wisconsin this past weekend.