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Foresters looking for butternut trees resistant to a disease known as butternut canker need look no farther than Pierce County's stewardship demonstration forest on Ellsworth's northwest side. A crew from the state's USDA Forest Service took a sample from an apparently healthy tree there Tuesday.
The cause of a residential fire that claimed the life of an Ellsworth man early last week remains under investigation. Daniel J. O'Brien, 39, died in the blaze at 244 S. Piety St. in the village, reported to authorities around 4:15 a.m. Jan. 21. The brick two-story older residence serving as a duplex, the upstairs of which was occupied by O'Brien as a renter, was totally destroyed.
Holdovers from 2006 jobs dominate an otherwise light road project schedule planned this year in the Pierce County area by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's Eau Claire office. "We're taking a breather over there," DOT Project Development Supervisor Paul Conlin said Thursday about the relatively few major undertakings in 2007 for both Pierce and St. Croix counties. At the top of Conlin's Pierce list is continuing rehabilitation of the Hwy. 10 Bridge over the St. Croix River at Prescott.
Heather McCarthy's second time around at Ellsworth's Holiday Station Store has her taking on more responsibility. McCarthy became manager of the convenience outlet at the corner of Hwys. 10-63 and 65 Wednesday. The local resident had also worked there for a year as an associate a couple of years ago. "I'm always up to a challenge," she said during her first day on her new job. Her associate duties included operating the cash registers and accomplishing a task list, she said.
A winning ticket for a Wisconsin Lottery Powerball drawing earlier this month was sold in Ellsworth. The $20,000 Power Play ticket was sold at Speedway. Kerry Hansen of Ellsworth claimed the prize Saturday, according to information from the lottery office in Madison. Hanson couldn't be reached for comment by the Herald as of press time yesterday. "We've got a big sign in the window," Speedway Manager Kathymae Fletcher said about store personnel's enthusiasm over the winning ticket being bought there. Fletcher said the ticket was sold during the night shift Jan 12 for the drawing on Jan.
BELDENVILLE -- A runner at heart, Heather Flock has kept on the move. Since graduating from Ellsworth High School in 1994, Flock's been busy with healthy lifestyle pursuits for herself and others. The latest is Fitness Influence, an enterprise specializing in yoga, aerobics, weightlifting and personal training she's operating from her Beldenville residence. "This has been my life-long dream," she said Friday, adding, "I've always wanted my own business." The opportunity presented itself while the Ellsworth native was participating in a favorite pastime: being a triathlete, she said.
Concerns about issues being addressed by the Ellsworth School District's long-range planning committee were aired at a question-and-answer session Wednesday. School Board President Scott Helmer and Curriculum Director Leona Johnson responded to the concerns from a large audience in the high school cafetorium, many of whom expressed frustration or suspicion.
The former welfare office isn't what it used to be. It's better. Just ask Janet Huebner, who retired last week as supervisor of Pierce County's Job Center and the office now known as economic support.
The La Crosse Catholic Diocese is addressing an ever-worsening shortage of priests by developing a strategic contingency plan. The declining number of priests has long been an issue in the diocese, according to Ben Nguyen, chancellor and spokesman. In 1965, there were 310 priests, a number that had dropped to 103 by last year, Nguyen said.
Over 40 gospel singers will ring the rafters of St. Francis Catholic Church in Ellsworth next month to help fill the shelves of Pierce County's food pantry. "The Travelin' Shoes Gospel Choir" will present a 7 p.m. concert Sunday, Feb. 11, in the church, located at 231 Woodworth St. If there's bad weather, the concert would be rescheduled to the following Sunday, Feb. 18. "The food pantry is no longer funded by the county and must rely on donations and grants," Commodity Clerk Fred Finstad said Thursday about a tightened budget for Pierce County.