Pam Jahnke to speak at Rural Life Days

To recognize the hard work, dedication and stewardship of those who care for the land and pray for a fruitful, safe farming season, the Diocese of Green Bay is hosting Rural Life Days.

Bishop David L. Ricken will celebrate the March 22 Mass at 10:30 a.m. at Shawano’s Sacred Heart Catholic Parish. These events will also include a special blessing, luncheon and keynote address.

“The festivities include the blessing of soil, seeds, machinery and animals, which are all vital parts of a prosperous agricultural year,” Ricken said.


Generosity, grace lead to church renovations

Photo by Carol Wagner Deacon Mike Grzeca hopes the renovations at St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church in Cecil will be completed by Easter Sunday.

A series of generous donations and the faith of its parishioners have allowed a rural church to undergo some much-needed renovations.

St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church in Cecil is replacing its flooring, putting in new pews and giving its interior a face-lift, said Deacon Mike Grzeca. The work that began after Ash Wednesday is hoped to be completed by Easter Sunday.

Problems began many years ago with an ongoing water leak.

“We knew we needed to replace the ceiling window shaft,” Grzeca said. “We couldn’t make it stay fixed.”

Water damage had ruined the carpet, which was already threadbare. Replacing the carpeting would require taking up the pews, which got church officials and members considering the overall condition of the interior of the church about four years ago.


Earliest memories recall life on the farm

My dad died of pneumonia in 1932, leaving my mother with five children ages 6 weeks to 6 years. I was 5 years old, so I remember a few things from back on the farm where we lived those years.

My dad was only 32 when he died and laid in state in our living room. His sister sat by us kids and lifted each one of us up to see him in the coffin.

“Is he sleeping?”

“Yes,” she said. “He is sleeping.”

We had chickens on our farm. Once a rooster jumped up on my head. Dad grabbed him off and snapped his neck, and we had him for supper. Dad and my older brother would go to town and play cards, leaving Mother to check out things in the barn. She took my younger brother and me along and showed us the big bull. She said, “See, he won’t hurt you,” as she petted his head. He reached out his rough tongue and ripped her apron right off!



Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski The Shawano Lake County Park pavilion was packed Saturday night as the Shawano FFA and Shawano FFA Alumni held their fifth annual wild game feed. Proceeds benefit local high school agriculture programs, including a new greenhouse at Shawano Community High School.

Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Sonya Schoepke, of Shawano, holds out her tray for a helping of venison barbecue from Cathy Pescinski during Saturday’s wild game feed at the Shawano Lake County Park pavilion. The event gave attendees a chance to try dishes made from pheasant, goose and even raccoon.

Nothing tasted like chicken, but nobody seemed to mind.

FFA supporters packed the Shawano Lake County Park pavilion for Saturday’s fifth annual wild game feed, sponsored by the Shawano FFA and Shawano FFA Alumni. People stood in line to get a taste of bluegill, venison, goose brats, pheasant — even raccoon.

The event continues to grow, according to Steve Stomberg, one of the FFA advisers. The wild game feed is a major fundraiser for FFA projects. In addition to trying the food itself, patrons got to participate in raffles and auctions featuring items donated by community businesses.

“When you look at the people who have shown for this, the good time that they have, everybody is leaving happy,” Stomberg said. “They get a good variety of food. I’ve never heard of anyone who has left here hungry.”

Most folks scooped up the food on their first go-round, though, as some who went back for seconds were greeted by empty crock pots and warming trays.


Spring show offers peek into church basements

We are looking forward to our granddaughter Alison’s graduation from Carroll University in May. We are so proud of our dean’s list student. She will have lots of family in the audience. Ali is our first grandchild to graduate college and hopes to teach physical education and coach softball.

March at the Mielke Arts Center will be busy preparing for our delightful spring production, “Church Basement Ladies.” This popular show has been seen in northeastern Wisconsin venues in past years and is always a hit with audiences. The play is a celebration of the ladies who work in the church kitchen.

It features four distinct characters and their relationships as they organize the food and solve problems in their Minnesota church kitchen. From the experienced, elderly matriarch to the young college student learning the ropes, the show gives us a touching, funny look at their lives as we watch them handle a record-breaking church dinner.


Ice storm good excuse for ‘spring’ cleaning

I always think that winters are easier to handle if there isn’t any freezing rain. Seems this year we have seen our share of that. I am hoping the latest episode is the frosting on the cake, and these crazy weather patterns will shift toward a warmer, more stable note.

Not that it is any comfort, however much of our country has been hit by ice storms, too. I know they are more common in some areas of the country. I also know that if there is the possibility of ice in the forecast, I will not go anywhere.

A few times in the past, I had been in Shawano — and once, even Tigerton — when I came out of a meeting, only to be greeted by cars not being able to get up the smallest of knolls. That was Tigerton, many years ago, on President’s Day. I had come out of the high school, saw cars not making the hill on the street and wondered how I would get home.


Enduring love gets a little help

Contributed Photo Don and Marion Nemetz, a Shawano couple that just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary last year, will have more time together after Don’s swift action, coupled with the help of trained medical professionals, helped save Marion after she suffered a stroke before Christmas.

A Christmas miracle gave one long-time married couple another happy new year together.

Don and Marion Nemetz celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary last year. With the quick actions of Don and a strong team of medical professionals, the Shawano couple is able to add another year together to their astonishing accomplishment.

On Dec. 20, Marion was baking Christmas cookies just as she has every year of their marriage. Don, in the next room, heard a moan from the kitchen followed by a loud noise. He raced in to find his wife unresponsive, slumped over the stove with a left facial droop. He eased her into a breakfast nook area and called 911. Shawano Ambulance was on scene 6 minutes later. The rest is a blur to both of them.


Meet Tammy Huebner

Photo by Carol Wagner Tammy Huebner is a volunteer with the Wee Care Food Pack program at Zion Lutheran Church in Shawano.

Tammy Huebner is a volunteer with the Wee Care Food Pack program at Zion Lutheran Church in Shawano.

Huebner was born and raised in Appleton, graduating from Appleton East High School. She earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and has been working in surgery at ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano almost 20 years. Currently, she is taking courses for quality improvement and innovation certificate at NWTC.

Huebner and her husband, Paul, who works at TimberPro, have been married 16 years. They have three children and live in the town of Wescott.

Q What is the Wee Care program?


Young professionals work to build relationships, help community

Photo by Carol Wagner The steering committee of the Shawano Area Young Professionals is, from left, front row, Tyler Marohl, Whitnee Carlson, John Stang, Karissa Kunschke and Brad Keuschel; back row, Katie Franke, Kendra Brusewitz, Sam Senzig, Chris Matson, and Rochelle Jahnke.

The Shawano Area Young Professionals have changed since their beginning in 2013 from Leadership Shawano County. They don’t have any dues and meetings are only for the steering committee.

“There’s something for everybody,” said Tyler Marohl, SAYPro president. “We offer so much. There’s a wide range of people you meet.”

The organization is for people ages 21-39 who want to network while contributing to the community. It is also an opportunity to give back to the community, grow leadership skills, and show enthusiasm for your current profession.

Steering committee member Karissa Kunschke said the group is growing.

“We’ve brought in speakers the last couple years,” she said. “We are doing more to give back to the community.”

That includes cooking meals for Shawano Area Matthew 25 and putting out Toys for Tots boxes around the county.

“We try to keep a full schedule every month,” said Rochelle Jahnke, program coordinator.


Clintonville foundation doles out grants

Photo by Grace Kirchner Jerold Schoenike, right, presented a check for $1,000 to Steve Conradt, second from right, of the Clintonville Goodfellows as Tom Lederer and Mary Hintz look on.

The Clintonville Area Foundation presented $19,000 in grants to eight charitable organizations serving the Clintonville area at a celebration Friday at The Living Room coffee shop.

Connie Carpenter, advisory board chairperson for the foundation, said she was excited to have CESA 8 receive a grant for $1,250 to sponsor two Clintonville area teachers in the CESA 8 Career Academy Teacher Externship program. Last year, a teacher from Marion participated in the program. Lynn Aprill, of CESA 8, stated she already has several firms willing to work with the program for this summer.

The Clintonville Area Ambulance Service received $1,250 to provide supplies for a flu vaccine clinic allowing local residents access to free flu shots. Don Kimlicka, director of the Ambulance Service, said the flu clinic was a goal they had for several years.


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