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June 6: News from around the Driftless Area
News From Around the Arrea

News from Around the Driftless Area’ is a compilation showcasing the excellent work and interesting tidbits from the community journalists sprinkled throughout our area.

VIROQUA –The Vernon County Buckle-Up Task Force announced car seat checks will be the first Wednesday of the month from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the following Viroqua locations: June 5 – Sleepy Hollow Chevrolet-Buick, 1225 North Main Street; July 3 – River Valley Auto Sales, E7341 County Y; August 7 – Sleepy Hollow Ford, 150 Fairlane Drive; September 4 – Sleepy Hollow Dodge-Ram, 1322 North Main Street; October 2 – Erlandson Office Building 318 Fairlane Drive (County BB) Call 608-637-5251 to schedule an appointment.

VIOLA –The Vernon County website will be getting a makeover. Upon a recommendation from Economic Development Coordinator Christina Dollhausen and IT director Connie McCullick, the Tourism, Promotion and Economic Development Committee voted to approve the proposal from Revize LLC. The approval to allocate Ho-Chunk grant dollars for this project came as the result of a request from the TPED Committee. By fall of 2019, the new Vernon County website will be ready to launch. It will provide streamlined access to online payment options like taxes, reserving parks, campsites, and more.

RICHLAND CENTER –The first step toward Richland Center’s new aquatic center was taken last Friday, with the groundbreaking ceremony at Krouskop Park. The ad hoc pool committee encourages the community to pledge support for this new facility  with naming rights available for businesses, families or individuals who wish to get involved with options including The Wall of Amazing Families, The Wall of Farm, The Wall of Honor and A Memory Wall… The Richland Center City Council unanimously approved an amendment to its ATV/UTV ordinance that will allow the vehicles to be used on most streets in the city. The action will prohibit the use of the vehicles on Court Street between Main and Jefferson Streets and on all streets in the city that have a speed limit in excess of 35 miles per hour.

PRAIRIE DU CHIEN –Donald Cipra, 85, Prairie du Chien, died on May 16 due to injuries sustained from being struck by a vehicle on the Highway 18 Bypass according to the Prairie du Chien Police Department. At 3:50 p.m. officers were  called to the 1200 block of East La Pointe Street. A 2011 Jeep, operated by Nathan Baker, 43, of Prairie du Chien, was westbound on LaPointe/Highway 18 when it struck Cipra on the roadway, according to the report. Officers and Tri-State Paramedics attempted lifesaving measures at the accident scene. Cipra was pronounced deceased at the scene of the accident by the Crawford County Coroner Joe Morovits…The Eastman Town Board of Supervisors honored Ron ‘Butch’ Colson for his 25 years of service as a patrolman. Butch will retire at the end of May…Regan Kramer has been crowned the 2019 Crawford County Dairy Princess, Little Miss Squirt is Lorelai Young and Little Miss Squirt Attendant is Breckyn Schlee...The Prairie du Chien Common Council approved plans for a future dog park in the city, which could be completed by fall of 2019. The city has purchased about five acres of land from the Department of Transportation, off Lockwood Street, near the Campion Boat Landing and designated it for the development of a 1.9 acre, fenced-in dog park… There will be two new exhibits on display this season at the Fort Crawford Museum in Prairie du Chien. The importance of artesian water and wells in Prairie du Chien will be explained and showcased in the hospital building. Artesian water is believed by many in this area to have medicinal benefits. The other new exhibit will give a glimpse into the tobacco and cigar industry in Prairie du Chien in the early 1900’s. Many of the artifacts and information have come from board member Bob Ziel, whose great uncle Ted Ziel, owned the Ziel Cigar Factory. This exhibit is located in the Museum of Prairie du Chien.

BOSCOBEL – The Village of Woodman will hold their Annual Dinky Days Celebration June 1 and 2. The event is a celebration of the village’s rich railroad history. Events include the Dinky Trail Bicycle Ride, which leaves the Fennimore Railroad Museum at 9 a.m. and is a ride at your own pace road trip that parallels the route of the famous Dinky Train. Arts, Crafts, Food and Carnival all begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday in the Village Park. Music by Tim Bonekamp begins at 1 p.m. There will be a youth baseball tournament at the new diamond (bring your own chair) at noon. Enjoy the model train exhibit in the Community Building, and rides on a real Dinky Train throughout the day. At 5 p.m. there will be a Railroad History Tour at the Dinky General Store along with more music and a free outdoor movie beginning at 8:30. On Sunday, plan to attend the All Church Gospel Music Worship Service at 11 a.m.  at the park followed by a potluck luncheon in the shelter at noon… Wauzeka’s Fourth Annual True Light Fun Run, in remembrance of the lives of Trinity and Lena Bartels, will be Saturday, June 8. The event includes a 5K run, 1.5 mile walk and quarter mile kids run. All proceeds go toward the upkeep of the Wauzeka Angels Community Fitness Center located at the Wauzeka-Steuben School. Registration  and start line will be at the high school football field in Wauzeka. Registration starts at 6:30 p.m. The kids run will begin at 8:30 p.m., with the run/walk happening at 9 p.m. Snacks will be provided by the Bartels and Dobson families after the event.

MUSCODA –A pointed chunk of concrete is a favorite eye-ball gauge of the Wisconsin River level at Muscoda. The concrete is in the water, a few feet downstream from the landing at the Riverside Park boat landing. Local river watchers know how to read it with no help from modern electronics. The water level allows it to be either complete exposed, completely covered, or somewhere in between with each level unofficially indicating how and if the river may be used. However, the landing is scheduled to be rebuilt this summer and some wonder if this long-time means of measurement will disappear with the oncoming rebuilding project.

FENNIMORE –Southwest Community Action Program recently celebrated the opening of Opportunity House in Dodgeville. Opportunity House is a sober living supportive home. People typically reside at  Opportunity House after they have participated in a substance use treatment program. Sobriety is a requirement for acceptance and ongoing residency at Opportunity House. The home is located just blocks away from the heart of downtown Dodgeville. Five to six women will be able to live there and there is an application and interview process. The women will pay rent, be expected to complete housework and attend their outpatient treatment obligations as well as be employed or volunteering.

PLATTEVILLE –The improvements on Business 151, including the installation of a center left-turn lane, scheduled for 2020 may be delayed. The Platteville Common Council may vote later this month to delay the project to redesign the portion west of South Water Street (Wisconsin 80/81) to add shoulders. The existing shoulders, which have been used by pedestrians and bicyclists, are planned to become the travel lanes, while a third lane is added in the middle for left turns. The grant, originally meant for only the proposed project, may be available after all to provide funding for the shoulders. If the shoulders are added to the project the cost will increase delaying the project to 2021. The project would add the center turn lane between Staley Avenue and the divided-highway section near Millennium Drive, converting the two-lane sections to three lanes, and converting the undivided four-lane sections to three lanes, using the existing travel lanes as shoulders… The Vietnam Moving Wall will be in Platteville on July 9-12. The wall will be in the parking lot to the east of the Williams Fieldhouse on the UW-Platteville campus.