Researched by Michael J. Caylor Jr.
Holy Cross Hospital was a busy place yesterday with a line forming down the hallway. The good news it the line was not sick people but rather community members seeking to get their blood pressures checked as part of the hospital’s open house. Numerous areas of the hospital were open to the public according to Sister Mary Charles, Administrator of Holy Cross. Members of the hospital staff explained complex equipment to visitors as pictures of other areas of the hospital were on display in the cafeteria.
omorrow during an afternoon tea the facility will recognize 23 staff members for their years of service. Meanwhile across the street, the Merrill Medical Group broke ground on their new clinic which will be built on O’Day Street across from the hospital. Dr. Thomas Simerson, Mayor Ralph Voigt, Drs. Michael Mikkelson and Earling Ravn are pictured along with Pharmacist Gary Schulze. The new clinic, which can house up to eight doctors with plenty of room to expand, will be open by September.
Students at Merrill Junior High School will now get more freedom as school administrators have decided to open the campus for ninth graders. According to principal James Boettcher the new policy went into effect on Monday allowing students to leave campus during lunch as long as they have a school issued pass which is obtainable with a written parental permission slip. Students and school administrators have been in negotiations over the open campus policy this past school year. Talks started after 36 students staged a walkout to demonstrate against the closed campus rule which was set in 1974. Boettcher noted the agreement with the students include a 16-point guideline system to make students more aware of the need to be accountable for their actions both in the neighborhood around the school but also in the business community while on out leave.
In area briefs: A committee has formed to collect donations for equipping and furnishing the new addition at Pine Crest Nursing Home. The local VFW Schmidtt-Manecke-Donner Post handed over the first donation of $1,000 to help the cause. Clifford Sabatke, Grace Schmitz and Harriet Woller from the post are pictured with Mike Berry, Pine Crest administrator. The Optimist Club is holding an auction this Saturday at the fairgrounds. Val Chilsen chairs the event, he is pictured with Dale Plamann who conceived the fundraiser. Marlene Stoelting has been named Sweet Adeline of the Year during the group’s banquet on Monday. Officers of the club are Darlene Plautz, president, Marilyn Johnson, vice president, Gloria Bondioli, treasurer, Nancy Weckwerth, recording secretary, and corresponding secretary Nancy English. The first ladies’ day luncheon will be held at the Merrill Golf Course on May 18. For reservations call Mrs. H.M. Michler or Mrs. Herbert Guenzel.
The Lincoln County Solid Waste Committee has approved raising the tipping fees at the transfer station to $55 per ton. The price increase was inevitable as costs to ship waste to the temporary landfill at Wisconsin Rapids are far above initial estimates. The committee has also voted to explore using the Walter Nelson property as the potential new landfill. The county was in negotiations with, and had spent $25,000 exploring the Alfred and Cleone Turner property, but the Turners have told the county their land is no longer for sale. Residents of the Knight Lake area also joined together to oppose the Turner property site. The City of Merrill Common Council also instructed City Engineer Charles Pierotti to work with the DNR to ensure the old city landfill is properly sealed. Pierotti also informed the council the bids are out and he is just waiting for the confirmation of the contractor for the East Main Street widening project. The $1.2 million dollar project is largely funded by the state and work should be begin July 1.
Thirsty? Looking to go out next Wednesday? Well, good luck finding an open tavern or grocery store that will sell you a beer. A group of license holders is banding together as part of a statewide protest over the potential change to Wisconsin’s drinking age from 19 to 21 by refusing to open or sell intoxicating beverages on May 21. License holders and their supporters will also head to Madison that day to protest on the capitol grounds. Local establishments that plan on closing include: Alanita’s, Avenue, Beacon, Clint’s Castle, Dam Bar, E&K Tap, Eagles Club, Ed & Sharon’s, Gleason Bowl, Grunds Bar, Hope & Marv’s, Hub Inn, Les & Jim’s Lincoln Lanes, Moonlight Inn, Nick’s Bar, Old Time Tavern, Pankow’s Bar, Plawmann’s Playhouse, Studio Bar, Toot’s and Jim’s, West Side, and Zanders Bar. Grocery stores who will refuse to sell are: Carl’s Foodlane, Dave’s Red Owl, Drew’s Supermarket, and John’s United Foods. Liquor stores locking up include: Carl’s Liquor, Third Street Liquor, Main Street Liquor and Park City Liquor.
The Jaycees have announced the addition of racing boats to this year’s Riverfest. The American Power Boat Association will hold its state championships in conjunction with the annual event at Ott’s Park. Expect more than 150 boats from three states to compete in 12 classes. These boats can reach up to 80 MPH while racing on the one mile course.
3’s Company Restaurant is under new ownership. Bruce, Kim, and Laurel invite you to stop in to try the new menu right after Memorial Day. The video wars are heating up again as an ad on page 27 from Mr. Movie’s, a Hudson based company, is advertising for a manager for their new store about to open in Merrill. Others looking for employees include: sewing machine operators at Fox Point, second shift production workers at SEMCO, restaurant staff for Mulligan’s Supper Club, Good Sam needs an admission specialist, Pizza Hut is seeking a manager, Krueger Floral needs an artist, Hugo’s Pizza needs help at night, a night auditor at Super 8, all shifts at Hardee’s, retail help at the Guy’s Shop, nursing assistants at Pine Crest, and it is not even summer yet but Stokely USA is taking applications for seasonal jobs at the bean factory. Apply in person at 2001 Water St.
A half page ad sponsored by the Merrill Historical Society marks the passing of a Merrill landmark, the former Lincoln County Courthouse. The building, which stood where Normal Park is, was originally built in 1882 for a cost of $5,700. It served as the courthouse from 1882 until 1903 when the courts moved to the “new” brick courthouse on East Main Street. After that the original courthouse served as the County Normal School from 1907 to 1968 when it was closed. In 1968 the Lincoln County Board voted to accept a bid of $2,175 to remove the building. An old lumberman said the building contained 2X16’s forty feet long which surely were from the original virgin pines of the area forests. All of them are now lost. The ad is part of Preservation Week, an event sponsored by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.