News June 24, 2015

Motorcyclist Dead In Dodge County’s First Road Fatal Of 2015


6/24/15 – 63-year-old Richard Sorenson of rural Ripon was killed in Dodge County’s first fatal traffic crash of 2015.  The incident occurred just after 9 am yesterday in the Town of Trenton on Highway 151 at the intersection with Hemlock Road.  64-year-old Wayne Kok of rural Randolph was driving an S-U-V and was trying to change lanes on 151 to turn east onto Hemlock.  Witnesses say Sorenson had gone from the right lane to the left lane while Kok merged left.  The motorcycle struck the front quarter panel of the S-U-V, overturned, hit a curb, and entered the grassy median just south of Hemlock.  Sorenson was tossed off the motorcycle, landed about ten feet in front of his bike, and was pronounced dead at the scene.  Kok and his 62-year-old female passenger were not injured.  An unsafe lane change and failure to wear a helmet appear to have been factors in the crash, which remains under investigation.  The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office handled the matter and received assistance from the Dodge County Crash Investigation Team, Beaver Dam Police Department, Fire Department, and EMS.


Horicon Marsh Kayaker Dead After Drowning Incident


6/24/15 – A kayaker on the Rock River died following a drowning incident yesterday.  Horicon Police Lieutenant Russ Saunders says his department responded to the shoreline area at the end of Vine Street around noon and found the man with his family along the shore.  A John Deere employee who heard about the incident was performing CPR.  The 62-year-old man was transported to the Beaver Dam Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead.  The cause of death is still pending but no foul play is suspected.  The man’s name has not been released.


Ground Broken On The Watermark


6/24/15 – Ground was broken yesterday on the Watermark. The community and senior center is being built in the former Fullerton Lumber building on South Center Street. Mayor Tom Kennedy says the Watermark is for the community not just today but for the next 40 years. Kennedy says the project will make Beaver Dam a better community that will “spur downtown revitalization even further guaranteed.” Funding for the $2.1-million dollar facility came primarily through donations and grants with taxpayers picking up a shortfall of roughly $275-thousand dollars. Mayor Tom Kennedy says construction should take about five months with a formal ribbon cutting planned next spring.


BDCDC Proposes Changes To Downtown Grant Program Guidelines


6/24/15 – The Beaver Dam Community Development Committee approved multiple changes to the guidelines for the Downtown Grant Program at its meeting last night.  The goal of the program is to increase the downtown property values and draw more people to those businesses through painting a series of aesthetically-pleasing murals.  The funding for these facades would be split amongst the business owner, city funds, and TIF dollars.  The committee’s first change would allow the definition of a ‘façade’ to include any side of a building that’s facing a public right-of-way, not just the front side.  Committee Chair Robert Ballweg says the design review guidelines had a strict definition that limited the projects that could be considered a façade.  He says this opens things up for a wider array of projects.  The definition of eligible projects would be changed to include any 2-D or 3-D art attached to a façade, not just murals.  The remaining amendments deal with the project’s finances.  The committee approved reimbursing business owners one-third of the project’s cost up to $3,300 as long as the business provides receipts of those costs.  They also agreed to cap the funds at $30,000 per year for the life of the grant.  Ballweg says these changes preserved dollars for the original intent of the program which is to enhance the downtown area.  He says this will allow for a larger number of projects to be completed.  There is roughly $72,000 currently available for TIF-approved projects.  The plan is for a mural project at Interquest to begin next month.  One more project is slated for next year and 10 to 15 are in the works for 2017, but the city’s landmark commission needs to approve each one.  The committee’s changes will now go in front of the common council next month for final consideration.


Horicon Council Approve Temporary Fix For West Lake Street


6/24/15 – The Horicon City Council last night approved a temporary fix for West Lake Street. DPW officials say certain sections of the roadway are beyond fixing by simply filling potholes. The street is in the city’s five-year plan and the upgrades are expected to extend the life of the road for three to five years. General Asphalt was awarded the $9000 repair contract.



BDHS Athletic Hall Of Fame To Welcome Three New Members


6/24/15 – The Beaver Dam High School’s Athletic Hall of Fame Committee has announced its latest inductees.  Three former athletes will be part of the Class of 2015: Jim Campbell, Todd Sobrilsky, and Nick Sirota.  Campbell and Sobrilsky each graduated from BDHS in 1980, participated in multiple sports, and were members of the school’s 1979 state championship football team.  Sirota graduated in 2002 and was on the 2002 hockey team that qualified for the W-I-A-A state tournament.  Selection Committee Member Greg Steil says the committee selects three or four former student-athletes per year based on nominations made by members of the local community.  The three are set to be inducted during the school’s homecoming weekend on Friday, September 25.  According to Steil, the inductees will be involved with the pep rally, downtown parade, dinner, and reception before receiving their plaques at the football game.  44 members are already in the Beaver Dam High School’s Athletic Hall of Fame.


Summer Concert Series Continues Tonight At Swan Park


6/24/15 – The Loco Vocals are performing at 7 pm tonight as part of Beaver Dam’s weekly summer concert series at Swan Park. The vocal super-group consider themselves performing ambassadors for the Beaver Dam Area Community Theatre and all the funds they raise benefits the theater. The Loco Vocals will be playing hits of the 1970’s with selections from the Eagles, the Bee Gees, Willie Nelson, Elton John, Billy Joel, Fleetwood Mac and Eric Clapton among others.


Wisconsin’s First Hay Crop Coming In Faster Than Normal


6/24/15 – This year’s first crop of hay that’s used in feeding Wisconsin farm animals is still coming in faster than normal.  But the heavy rains of May-and-June have made the harvest a struggle at times.  New federal figures show that 85% of the state’s first hay crop has been brought in — still 6% ahead of the five-year average.  80% of the initial hay is rated good-to-excellent. And the wet conditions have resulted in more re-growth.


Hundreds Ejected From Lambeau Field During Chesney Concert


6/24/15 – Up to 300 people were ejected from Lambeau Field in Green Bay during last weekend’s Kenny Chesney-Jason Aldean concert.  That’s three times as much as any Packer home game since 2002.  Most of the ejections were for drunken behavior, harassment, and fighting.  An average Packer home game results in 25 ejections among the normal crowd of what’s now close to 80,000.  Around 53,000 attended the country music show, resulting in 25 arrests.  Chesney also performed at Lambeau in 2011 — when 15 were arrested and 60 were tossed out.