Got seeds? Black-capped chickadees happy to take ‘em

A black-capped chickadee picks a sunflower seed from a backyard feeder. (Photo by Cathy Carnes)

I’ve been watching one of our favorite birds, the black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) at our feeders. These little balls of energy always seem to lift one’s spirits with their bright colors, high energy and curiosity.

They have a distinctive black cap and bib; their body is light in color, and their wings are black with white edges. It’s easy to remember their name, as it is reflected in their chick-a-dee-dee call, which interestingly is an alarm call. The more “dees” in the call, the greater the alarm they are communicating to not only their flock mates, but to other bird species that associate with them. So hanging out with chickadees has a real, and maybe even lifesaving, benefit!


Morgan Musings: New town hall is impressive

Hello, Morgan residents! Thanks for being interested in small-town news.

I toured the new town hall during the open house on Jan. 6 and was very impressed with the new facility. The roughly 4,100-square-foot town hall features a large gathering room with tables and chairs available to seat about 100 people, with an adjacent spacious kitchen.

The kitchen has a pass-through counter to the large gathering room and features an abundance of counter space and outlets. There is also a smaller meeting room for monthly town meetings, designated office space, modern restrooms and plenty of storage. The parking area is freshly blacktopped, and the building is ADA compliant.

The new hall would be a comfortable location to host your next event, and hall rental can be arranged by contacting any town board member.



Beginner machine quilting class offered

Gillett Handiworks LLC is offering a Beginner Machine Quilting Class that will take place over four Saturdays from Feb. 17 through March 10.

Class will go from 2-4:30 p.m. each Saturday, and the cost of the class is $42.20. Call 920-855-5002 or email to ask questions or reserve a spot.

Supplies students will need are: 2.5 yards of background fabric; 7 Fat Quarters or scrap equivalent to make 57 5-inch squares; 1 yard of accent fabric; 5/8 yard of fabric for binding; 4 yards of backing fabric; batting 68 by 68; thread to match (hand-quilting thread is not recommended); rotary cutter, mat and ruler; basic sewing supplies (seam ripper, scissors, pins, etc.); and a sewing machine in good working order.

Gillett Handiworks is located next to OJ’s Midtown at 124 E. Main St., Gillett.


Chain of Hearts campaign supports families

Hospital stays can be devastating to a family’s budget. NEW Credit Union’s February Chain of Hearts campaign aims to help the families of sick or injured children.

The Chain of Hearts campaign is a statewide effort by Wisconsin’s credit unions to raise funds for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. This fundraiser for the local nonprofit hospitals of Wisconsin asks credit union staff, members, community residents and area businesses to remember the special people in their lives during the Valentine season by purchasing a link or heart. The campaign began Jan. 30 and will run until Feb. 28.

Those who donate will have their names or the names of their loved ones displayed as part of the credit union’s lobby decorations. Paper “links” bearing these names will sell for $1 each and hearts for $5, $25 or $50.


Latest Machickanee Players show is ‘Insane’

Russ Johnson and Jenni Fabry rehearse for the February opening of “Insane With Power.” (Contributed photo)

The Machickanee Players’ current production, Scott Haan’s “Insane with Power,” is scheduled for the second and third weekends in February.

Described as a family friendly comedy, the play takes place in the visitation room of a local mental health institution where all the residents believe they are super heroes, complete with various “super” powers. The laughs begin when Speed Demon “runs” around the room backward, Dim Bulb relates how his powers came into being, Kevin sees other people in the room and Mental blurts out whatever random thoughts enter her head.

The comedy will be presented Feb. 9-11 and 16-18 at the Park Avenue Playhouse, 408 Park Ave., Oconto. The cast includes Chris Bellow, Kyle Patrick, Russ Johnson, Travis Rysewyk, Jenni Fabry and Mariah Engeldinger.


Rolling lefse on historical society agenda

Paula Huff and Karl Ballestad will present a hands-on program with a Norwegian theme for Thursday’s Speaker Series event sponsored by the Oconto County Historical Society. The presentation, ”Get Rolling With Paula and Karl,” is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. in the meeting room at the Beyer Home and Carriage Museum, 917 Park Ave., Oconto.

The two presenters plan to demonstrate how to make a traditional Norwegian flatbread called lefse, which is made from potatoes, flour, butter and salt and rolled very thin to produce a tender, delicious Norwegian staple.

The lefse-making process, brought to America by Norwegian immigrants, involves rolling pins, lefse sticks, and griddles.

Individuals attending the program will have the opportunity, if they wish, to roll their own lefse and grill it or offer their support to others as they try their hand at lefse production. Samples will be available to enjoy.


Abrams theater to hold auditions for ‘Singin’ in the Rain’

Tap dancers, singers, and performers are invited to open auditions for the Abrams Spotlight Productions Inc. spring show, “Singin’ in the Rain.”

Auditions will be held 6-8 p.m. Jan. 2-3, at the Byng Community Theater, 5852 Maple Ave., Abrams.

“Singin’ in the Rain” has all the makings of a Tinseltown tabloid headline — the starlet, the leading man and a love affair that could change lives and make or break careers. The stage version includes all of the classic song and dance numbers from the film. For this reason, tap dancers are strongly encouraged to audition.

The show calls for various roles, both male and female, 13 years or older. Individuals who audition should prepare a 2-minute selection of a song to sing. The song should not be from “Singin’ in the Rain.”

A group choreography audition will take place also, so performers are encouraged to wear comfortable clothes and bring their tap shoes if they own a pair.


Gillett goes on a Holiday Wreath Hunt

The display case at the Gillett Public Library is full of prizes from area businesses to be won in the 12th annual Holiday Wreath Hunt. (Contributed photo)

This is the 12th year that a Holiday Wreath Hunt has taken place in Gillett, and this annual event is coordinated by the Gillett Public Library. It’s designed for families to have fun together during the holidays as they travel through town in search of answers to questions.

Here’s one of the questions you’ll be asked to answer: “The unique wreath at the Gillett Historical Museum is made from an old railroad sign. Gillett was a main hub years ago; several trains came through town every day, including the Polar Express! Their wreath announces the population of Gillett back in 1905 … How many lived here then?”

There are 29 Gillett businesses participating in the hunt this year, and many have donated prizes, which are on display at the library. Hard copies of the wreath hunt are available at the library, and it can also be downloaded from the library’s website. The completed hunts need to be turned into the Gillett library by Tuesday, Jan. 2.


Quilters tie for best in show

Two Shawano quilters tied for Best of Show at the Decades of Fiber Arts event held Dec. 2 in Gillett.

Mary Hoppe’s quilt, called Crazy Family, is designed from a traditional crazy quilt pattern with the focal point of each square being reproductions of favorite family photos. This 2017 brown quilt, enhanced with dozens of vintage gold pins, was longarm quilted by Diane Napier of Mountain.

Sharon Krueger’s quilt was created using the Stack and Whack method of piecing material so that the finished project has the look of a kaleidoscope. This bright quilt has appliquéd koi on it and was also longarm quilted by Napier.


Vets 4 Vets seeks veterans for Christmas 'Break-Ins'

Vets 4 Vets of Northeast Wisconsin is looking for veterans who might need their holidays brightened in the group’s annual Christmas “Break-In” program.

The holidays can be difficult, either financially or emotionally, for veterans — especially those suffering from depression, readjustment disorders or PTSD. Anyone who knows of a veteran – individual or with a family – who might be experiencing hard times and could use some help this holiday season can nominate them for the program.

A “break-in” is a planned surprise for the veteran and his or her family, usually done at their home while he or she is away. The nonprofit works with the person who nominated the veteran ahead of time to determine how to best serve each individual situation. Although the organization does its best to serve the needs of the community, not all veterans who are nominated will be selected to be a part of this year’s program.


Subscribe to RSS - Community