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New Menard's set to open

Feb. 26, 2009 2:30 p.m. | The new Menard's store in Waukesha will open March 17 at Kossow Road and W. Blue Mound Rd. (Hwy. JJ). Read more in Shop Talk.

Waukesha Foundry laying off 45

Feb. 26, 2009 12:42 p.m. | Waukesha Foundry said it plans to lay off 45 employees for about a month beginning March 13 as it suspends some manufacturing operations. The company warned that the duration of the layoffs is uncertain. Click here to read more.

In the Sonic debate, south siders prevailed

Feb. 26, 2009 12:08 p.m. | Residents on the south side of W. Sunset Drive were given some satisfaction last night as the Plan Commission denied a request to build a Sonic Drive-in at the Shoppes of Fox River. Read more in Waukesha FYI.

Shanty is home for Brewers baseball fans

Feb. 26, 2009 7:48 a.m. | In a sea of 20 or so tents outside the north side of Miller Park, the shanty put together by Eric Smith, Jim Wall, Rigo Reyes and somebody called Trav the roofer is pretty impressive.

It stands about 10 feet high and is about 10 feet wide. It has a frame made of 2X4s and its walls are high-grade cardboard. It won't withstand an ice storm, but it will do for now.

Since about 1 a.m. Thursday morning, it's been home for these baseball fans from Waukesha.

"We want opening day tickets," Wall said. "We were going to come Wednesday and set up, but we decided to do it last night."

The Milwaukee Brewers' Arctic Tailgate party begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, but Wall and his pals wanted to be extra sure they had a shot at the home opener on Friday, April 10, against the Chicago Cubs.

» Read Full Article

One Sonic approved, one shot down in Waukesha

Feb. 25, 2009 11:06 p.m. | The Plan Commission approved a new Sonic Drive-in on the east side of Waukesha late Wednesday and voted down a proposal for a second Sonic in a new shopping center under construction on the southwest side.

The rejected proposal was for the Shoppes at Fox River on W. Sunset Drive.

Nearby residents expressed concern the restaurant would bring to the area undesirable amounts about traffic, trash and drag racing on the Sunset Drive. The Sonic was situated in a way that exiting vehicles would shine headlights into the windows of nearby homes.

Commissioners cited increased traffic and disruption to neighborhoods as reasons for voting down the proposal. They suggested the restaurant be relocated at another site within the shopping center, one that's away from Sunset Drive.

The approved Sonic is on E. Moreland Blvd., near Springdale Road.

'Is this the year you kill somebody?'

Feb. 25, 2009 5:54 p.m. | With his neck in a brace, Martin A. Roberts stood before Waukesha County Court Commissioner Laura Florian Lau.

“You are one of the most dangerous people walking around... Is this going to be the year you kill somebody?” she asked. “I don’t know what it’s going to take to get through to you.”

Read more in Wasted in Wisconsin.

Chili fund-raiser for Food Pantry

Feb. 25, 2009 3:43 p.m. | Just in from Michael Jonas, associate director of the Food Pantry of Waukesha County:

Come and vote for your choice of the best local chili, listen to great live music, buy a chance in a raffle and make a difference in your community by attending this food drive and fund-raiser for the Food Pantry.

Read more in Waukesha FYI.

Rogers Memorial adds to United Way challenge grant

Feb. 25, 2009 3:24 p.m. | Rogers Memorial Hospital will donate an extra $4,000 to the United Way in Waukesha County to help fix a shortfall in the United Way's annual fund drive that could result in program funding cuts.

Rogers Memorial Hospital is the second corporation to step up to a challenge issued by Quad/Graphics' The Windhover Foundation to come to nonprofits' aid.

United Way in Waukesha County said a projected $475,000 revenue shortfall following its annual campaign would require across-the-board funding cuts of 8% to 10% to participating programs.

The Windhover Foundation pledged to donate $275,000 with a challenge to the community to raise the remaining $200,000.

ProHealth Care said it would donate $100,000, and the United Way has received a total of $3,000 from county residents. Rogers Memorial Hospital will donate $4,000 above the contributions its employees pledged during the fall campaign.

» Read Full Article

Local artists sought for Shoppes

Feb. 25, 2009 10:59 a.m. | Opus North Corporation is seeking local artists for a public art project, which will be incorporated in the new Shoppes at Fox River retail development on Sunset Drive. Read more in Waukesha FYI.

Curious lights in Waukesha County sky might have been comet

Feb. 25, 2009 10:42 a.m. | Strange lights caught the attention of residents watching the sky over Waukesha County last night, prompting deputies from the sheriff's department to check out what might be happening.

What did they see?

"Nothing," said sheriff's Capt. Karen Ruff.

"Our UFO" is how Ruff described what might initially play through the minds of onlookers until further investigation revealed what might have actually occurred.

"I'm being told by other sources that there's a possibility that there's a comet that went through the sky last night," Ruff said this morning, citing a report on WTMJ-AM (620), which also received calls from listeners about what they were seeing.

» Read Full Article

Shedding more light on Carroll U

Feb. 23, 2009 4:41 p.m. | A couple of aldermen are asking the city to increase the wattage of street lights near Carroll University for the safety of students. Read more in Waukesha FYI.

Museum opens American Family Farm traveling exhibit

Feb. 21, 2009 12:01 p.m. | The Waukesha County Historical Society and Museum is opening a traveling exhibit today on early farm life in the Upper Midwest. The exhibit, "Growing Season, An American Farm Family at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century," includes talks and demonstrations on gardening and food preparation. Click here for an online photo gallery of preparations for the exhibit.

Scam alert

Feb. 21, 2009 11:50 a.m. | The Waukesha County Chamber of Commerce is warning its members about a scam making the rounds. Read more in Waukesha FYI.

Laurel Walker: Parents can fight 'sexting' stupidity

Feb. 21, 2009 11:01 a.m. | Is there a difference between a stupid teen trick - passing around a girl's naked picture she'd earlier provided her now-ex-boyfriend - and child molestation? Laurel Walker weighs in on the Waukesha School District's "sexting" incidents in her Saturday column. Give your opinion in an online forum.

First Wisconsin town with 2 Sonics

Feb. 21, 2009 9:34 a.m. | The Plan Commission on Wednesday will look at plans for two Sonic Drive-ins. Read more in Waukesha FYI

Girls BB plays for cancer awareness

Feb. 19, 2009 2:43 p.m. | Tonight, South and West girls basketball teams will play each other at South in a game that will be a fundraiser for breast cancer awareness. Read more in Waukesha FYI.

Slippery snow brought trafic mess

Feb. 19, 2009 2:28 p.m. | It's sunny and steets are mostly clear. But when the snow hit yesterday, roadways turned into skating rinks. Read more in Waukesha FYI.

Woman arrested in stabbing of ex-husband

Feb. 18, 2009 11:00 a.m. | Waukesha - Waukesha police arrested a 48-year-old woman last night after she allegedly stabbed her ex-husband, Capt. Mark Stigler said today.

The man was taken to Waukesha Memorial Hospital were he was treated for his injuries.

Police were called to the 100 block of Garfield Ave. at 10:48 p.m. and found the woman intoxicated and the man lying in a pool of blood. Officers had removed the man from the residence earlier but he later came back. He went into the bedroom where he found the woman in bed with another man, Stigler said.

The man became angry and an altercation ensued. In an attempt to get the victim out of her life, she stabbed him, Stigler said.

Police are recommending the woman be charged with second degree reckless injury and bail jumping.

UW-Waukesha, military academy to announce partnership

Feb. 17, 2009 3:12 p.m. | The University of Wisconsin-Waukesha and St. John's Northwestern Military Academy will announce a partnership tomorrow in which the college will provide academy graduates with academic courses that assist them in gaining entry into military academies or ROTC programs.

The goal of the program is to help students meet the high academic standards required for admission to West Point, Annapolis or the three other service academies, said Jay Smith, an academy vice president.

Academies regularly accept applicants who complete college preparation programs. This would be the first such program in the Upper Midwest, Smith said.

The university will provide instruction in foreign language, math and science. Students will be taught physical fitness and leadership development at Northwestern. The program might begin as early as the fall, and up to 30 students are projected to enroll in the program, Smith said.

Student housing would be available at Northwestern, which has about 320 students and annually graduates about 60 cadets.

Waukesha parents warned about illicit photos on students' cell phones

Feb. 17, 2009 2:58 p.m. | Waukesha - Police and school officials are urging parents to check for naked photos on their children's cell phones after a 14-year-old girl learned that her nude photo ended up in the hands of hundreds of area high school students.

The Waukesha West High School student sent the photo to her boyfriend, but when the couple broke up, he forwarded it to other students using his cell phone, Waukesha police Capt. Mark Stigler said Tuesday. Police have talked to the core group responsible and may recommend felony possession of child pornography charges, he said. Police have recovered computers belonging to the teens to investigate whether they also sent the photos over the Internet.

"We know it's a hard stance, but how else do we deal with this?" Stigler said. "Kids are being immature and doing foolish things."

An automated phone message from the Waukesha School District went to parents Monday and Tuesday asking them to talk to their children and check the phones for illicit photos.

Police want parents to delete any inappropriate photos because the magnitude of the potential proliferation of photos is too large to investigate, Stigler said.

» Read Full Article

Woman charged in methadone death is suspect in 2nd overdose

Feb. 17, 2009 12:24 p.m. | Waukesha - A Waukesha woman charged last week with homicide in connection with a methadone overdose death is a suspect in another overdose death, according to subpoenas filed in Waukesha County Circuit Court.

Nina E. Pudil, 34, is suspected of providing methadone to Donald G. Arnold, 40, who was found dead March 31, 2007, at the Airport Lodge in the City of Pewaukee, where he lived.

If authorities tie her to Arnold's death, Pudil could face a charge of first-degree reckless homicide.

Pudil and Aaron B. Schmoller, 29, of Waukesha each were charged Friday with first-degree reckless homicide in the death of Nola K. Heinowski, 46.

Pudil is accused of selling liquid methadone to Heinowski, of Waukesha, who was found dead at her home Oct. 15.

» Read Full Article

Lake water application delayed

Feb. 17, 2009 10:40 a.m. | Mayor Larry Nelson has told me that the city's application to the DNR and the other Great Lake states to acquire Lake Michigan water won't happen as quickly as he had hoped.

Several months ago, Nelson said he had hoped the application would be ready for Common Council vote by this month or March. He's not sure when it will be ready.

Questions to the DNR about the application remain to be worked out. The city also is working on responding to a lengthy list of questions posed by Milwaukee-based environmentalists, mainly about Waukesha's plans to return the treated water to a Wauwatosa waterway.

After reading Great Lakes Blogger, one gets the feeling that getting the diversion will not be a slam dunk.

Pizza party at the drop-in shelter

» Read Full Article

ProHealth donates $100,000 to help bridge Waukesha County United Way shortfall

Feb. 16, 2009 12:55 p.m. | Waukesha - ProHealth Care will donate an extra $100,000 to the United Way in Waukesha County, taking the Quadracci family's challenge to bridge the organization's funding gap.

Last week, the Windhover Foundation, a charitable group funded by Quad/Graphics and the Quadracci family, announced it would donate $275,000 to the United Way in Waukesha County.

Joel Quadracci, president and chief executive of Quad/Graphics, urged the community to match the gift by raising the remaining money needed to maintain United Way service levels.

The United Way had projected a $475,000 shortfall in its annual fund drive, prompting its board of directors to plan for across-the-board funding cuts of 8% to 10% to participating programs.

With the Quadracci and ProHealth donations, United Way in Waukesha County needs another $100,000 in contributions by March 20 to shelve the across-the-board cuts.

» Read Full Article

2 charged in Waukesha methadone overdose death

Feb. 13, 2009 4:41 p.m. | Waukesha - Homicide charges were filed Friday against two people in a methadone overdose death in October of a 46-year-old Waukesha woman.

Nina E. Pudil, 34, of Waukesha is accused of selling liquid methadone to the victim, Nola K. Heinowski, according to a criminal complaint filed in Waukesha County Circuit Court.

Aaron B. Schmoller, 29, of Waukesha is accused of obtaining the methadone from a clinic where he was being treated and selling it to Pudil.

Heinowski was found dead in her Elizabeth St. residence Oct. 15 after authorities received an anonymous 911 call to check on her. Detectives later learned that Pudil discovered Heinowski's body and went with a man to a pay phone, where the man dialed 911, the criminal complaint says.

Pudil and Schmoller each were charged with first-degree reckless homicide. If convicted, they face up to 25 years in prison and 15 years of extended supervision. During separate court appearances, Commissioner Thomas J. Pieper ordered them held in lieu of $100,000.

» Read Full Article

Restaurateur settles charges he hired, harbored illegal immigrants

Feb. 13, 2009 2:11 p.m. | The owner of the upscale Asiana steakhouse in the village of Pewaukee has settled federal charges that he hired illegal immigrants to work at the restaurant and harbored them in a Waukesha residence.

As part of a plea deal, Rong "Ricky" Shi, 33, pleaded guilty to and was convicted of one count of hiring an unauthorized alien, a misdemeanor.

In exchange, four felony counts that Shi knowingly and unlawfully harbored illegal immigrants for financial gain were dismissed.

The plea agreement requires Shi to forfeit to the federal government his financial share of the residence in Waukesha on Melody Lane where the illegal immigrants stayed. The property is listed to Shi and three others and is assessed at $211,400, according to Waukesha County property tax records.

Shi's attorneys, Jonathan C. Smith and Steven R. Kohn, said the amount to be forfeited has not yet been determined.

» Read Full Article

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