News – December 5, 2016

Dodge County Reports Six Inches In Regions First Snowfall


12/5/16 – All of Wisconsin has some fresh snow on the ground this morning, and southern areas have the most. Six inches fell Sunday at Brownsville in Dodge County — and five inches came down near Madison, Janesville, and Sinsinawa in Grant County. It was the first significant snow in many places — although central and northern Wisconsin had their second helping in recent weeks with between two and four inches. Thousands of people also saw it on their T-Vs, as about two inches fell during the Green Bay Packers’ 21-13 victory against Houston at Lambeau Field. The National Weather Service says some snow will melt today, with highs in the mid to upper 30s expected — but there’s a chance for more rain and snow this afternoon through Tuesday, and the season’s coldest temperatures are due in later this week with highs in the teens by Friday.


Dodge County Trail Bid Beats Estimate


12/5/16 – The first segment of a non-motorized trail through Dodge County that would honor local fallen veterans will cost less than originally expected.  That is according to Andrew Johnson, who is on the Friends of the Dodge County Parks’ Gold Star Memorial Trail Committee.  During a recent appearance on WBEV’s Community Comment, Johnson said the committee received seven bids for the trail’s first segment, which would connect Mayville and the Horicon Marsh Education and Visitor Center.  Johnson says the low bid came in around $550,000, which is $100,000 below estimates.  According to Johnson, engineering started within the last two months.  He says the trail would stretch from Mayville’s Tyler Park to the Horicon Marsh Visitor Center as the goal is to utilize government parking lots and restrooms that are already in place.  Johnson expects construction of the ten-foot wide paved trail will begin in early spring and says it could wrap up by August.  He says attention will then shift to the trail’s second phase, which will incorporate Horicon by either running through the city’s railroad corridor or along Highway E.  Future segments would also incorporate the City of Beaver Dam.  Johnson says the committee has less than one month to raise $50,000, which would trigger a $50,000 match from Mayville’s Bachhuber Foundation.  Information on how to donate is available on today’s homepage at


John Deere Completes Horicon Expansion Project


12/5/16 – A large expansion is complete at one of Dodge County’s largest manufacturing facilities.  On Friday, John Deere Horicon Works held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate its 388,000 square foot plant expansion, which cost roughly $46,000,000.  Ground was broken in October 2015, and production began late last month.  Factory Manager Steve Johnson says the project was undertaken to consolidate the assembly of utility vehicles from two locations to one, increasing efficiency by cutting out the need to send each vehicle to Janesville.  Johnson says the expansion will add 80 full-time jobs to Deere’s Horicon location.  He says a shortage in the labor force has made hiring in Dodge County difficult and notes Deere has turned to a program called the Joseph Project, which was started by United States Senator Ron Johnson, who was on-hand Friday.  The program is coordinated through churches who help match people who want a new start on life with a manufacturing job.  Free transportation to and from work is provided to the employees until they are on their feet and can possibly relocate to the community in which they work.  Johnson expects the hiring process will wrap up by the end of February and says there will be over 1,200 employees at the Horicon operation.


Madison Musician Survives Oakland Warehouse Fire


12/5/16 – A musician from Madison is said to be “heartbroken” after he survived Friday night’s fire at a converted warehouse where at least 33 people are confirmed dead. Joel Shanahan, who uses the stage name Golden Donna, was among those performing at a electronic music dance party before the building went up in flames late Friday night. Sheriff’s officials say only about one third of the structure was searched for victims as of Sunday afternoon. And while seven of the dead have been identified, it could take weeks to identify other victims through dental records and D-N-A. One of Shanahan’s friends, Scott Gordon of Madison, says the Madison musician had friends who remained unaccounted for as of Saturday.


Residency Motion From Dodge County Sex Offender Rejected


12/5/16 – A motion to disregard a newly-enacted state law in the case of a convicted violent sex offender was denied Friday.  In a Dodge County courtroom, Judge Brian Pfitzinger rejected Jonathan Miller’s motion to remove a stipulation that prohibits him from living within 1,500 feet of any adjoining property that houses minors.  Pfitzinger says Act 156 is not what is keeping Miller from being released from Sandridge Secure Detention Facility in Mauston, rather the Department of Human Services’ criteria.


Search Continues For Lomira Gas Station Burglar


12/5/16 – Police are looking for suspects who broke into the Lomira Shell Station early Saturday.  An employee responded to the alarm sounding and found that the front glass doors were shattered.  Cigarettes, beef jerky, and Packers clothing was taken.  Anyone with information should call the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office.


Walker Mulling State Funds For Juvenile Corrections Facility


12/5/16 – Governor Scott Walker says he’ll consider state funds to build a new juvenile corrections’ facility in Milwaukee County, but the county would have to operate it. County Executive Chris Abele says his goal is to stop sending any offenders to the Lincoln Hills boys’ school in northern Wisconsin — the target of federal investigations for alleged inmate abuses and civil rights violations. Counties get state aid to help pay their juvenile detention costs, but officials say they have little choice but to send their most troubled teen inmates to the state owned Lincoln Hills and its Copper Lake girls’ school, both near Irma in Lincoln County. Counties pay almost 300-dollars per day to house offenders at both state facilities. Abele says a detailed plan for a Milwaukee facility is still being worked on, and Walker is not sure yet how much it would cost.


Harmony Baptist Church Gets Top Prize In Holiday Parade


12/5/16 – Harmony Baptist Church took home the top prize in the Beaver Dam Holiday Parade. The winners were announced Saturday night at the Watermark after the 45-minute parade wrapped up. Second place honors went to Centro, followed by Highland 4H, the Beaver Dam Lions Club and St. Katherine Drexel rounded out the top five. Each received a handcrafted plaque made by the Beaver Dam Senior Center Woodshop and a monetary prize.


BDCH Tree Of Lights Ceremony Tonight


12/5/16 – Beaver Dam Community Hospital will host the 27th annual ‘Tree of Lights’ program tonight.  The program allows local residents to purchase a tree light in honor or in memory of a friend or loved one.  Organizers call the trees located in front of the hospital, Hillside Manor and Stone Terrace ‘symbols of loving, remembering and giving during the holiday season.’  The free program starts at 7pm in the hospital’s conference center and features a choir performance and continues with the tree lighting followed by a reception in the cafeteria.  Tree lights cost $5 apiece and proceeds fund the hospital’s Hospice and Lifeline programs.  Lifeline offers security for those living in their home by providing help with the single push of a button. Hospice supports and assists patients dealing with terminal illnesses and their families.  Tree of Lights collected over $400-thousand dollars in its first 26 years.


Tickets On Sale For BDACT Christmas Radio Play


12/5/16 – Tickets are on sale now for the Christmas radio play that the Beaver Dam Area Community Theatre is presenting in conjunction with WBEV-WXRO. This production of A Christmas Carol has been re-written for the stage from the original story by Charles Dickens. Playwright Phillip Grecian created an original “old time radio” format based on the radio show produced and performed back in the 1940s.  The new version was first performed in 2012 at KTWU-TV in Topeka, Kansas.  The show is directed by Dan Bell and produced by Diane Rabehl who have been presenting radio versions of holiday classics since 2002.  The show itself will be like an old-fashioned radio performance and will include period wardrobes worn by the cast and old time sound effects performed live on stage.  The show dates are December 15, 16 and 17 at 7pm and are $10 available at Rechek’s Food Pride or online at One of the performances will then be broadcast on both WBEV and WXRO in the days leading up to Christmas.