Best of The Gazette, Sept. 17, 2013: Cows, Jets and a monarch mystery
The Gazette publishes a lot of news in a week. Combine that with all the distractions a weekend brings, and that means there's a good chance you might have missed some important stories. Here's a summary of some of The Gazette's best content from the last week or so:
What will river look like?
Janesville city staff hopes the next 18 months will usher in a new era for the downtown. The city in May received a $200,000 federal grant to hire a consultant to create a plan focusing on the downtown riverfront, especially the area around the parking plaza. Some of the questions the consultant should help answer include: Is more parking needed and, if so, where should it be built? Could the city build whitewater rapids starting at the Centerway Dam so people can kayak or tube? And what can the city do to help businesses turn toward the river instead of away from it?
Tagging monarchs helps understand miracle of migration
The monarchs of North America vex scientists. The insects are the only butterflies on the planet to travel 3,000 to 4,000 miles to get out of the cold to hibernate and to return north in spring. Retired Janesville teachers Larry and Emily Scheunemann netted and tagged 50 monarch butterflies at their rural Whitewater home earlier this month in an attempt to help scientists solve that mystery.
Safety first: local officials played it cool through heat wave
While Friday night's football games required long sleeves and pants, athletic officials across Wisconsin were on high alert for the dangers brought by scorching temperatures and oppressive humidity earlier last week. “The most important thing to remember for me is that these are somebody else's sons and daughters that I'm coaching,” Janesville Craig co-cross country coach Brian Lawton said.
Janesville Jets cleared to land
Administrators for the Janesville Jets hockey team made a concerted effort starting last offseason to get the organization—including players—more involved in the community. Those efforts began to pay off last year in the form of attendance, including selling out a game for the first time. Now the team is setting its sights on another goal: Winning the Robertson Cup.
Our Views: Schulte must do better with details on initiative
The Gazette Editorial Board is mostly on board with Janesville School District Superintendent Karen Schulte's China initiative. The idea of Janesville students learning beside young people from other countries and cultures—and learning from them, as well—has considerable merit and could give local students advantages. But if the board had to fault her for one thing, it would be for a lack of communication with the school board and the public.
Editor's views: Loyal subscribers essential for Gazette's ongoing success
In our recent efforts to develop a business model to sustain The Gazette for years to come, we've relearned an important lesson, Gazette Editor Scott Angus writes. Our subscribers, our most loyal customers, are a special bunch of people who are critical to our success.
Lessons strike a chord with seniors
Janesville's Mary Kilmer knows what it's like to realize a dream. She had wanted to learn to play piano since she was a child, but she never got the chance until age 50. Now she is helping others do the same by giving free beginner piano lessons at the Janesville Senior Center. Pat Helms, 71, of Beloit said Mary is an excellent teacher. “She gives us helpful hints, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to do music lessons with her," she said. "It's always nice to be challenged no matter what age you are."
Beloit Janesville Symphony Orchestra celebrating its 60th anniversary
In an age when arts organizations struggle to survive, the Beloit Janesville Symphony has remained a musical fixture, evolving to reach new audiences and expand the interests of its traditional ticket holders. This year, the Beloit Janesville Symphony will celebrate its 60th anniversary with a Friday, Sept. 20, gala at the Beloit Country Club. The Gazette's archives offer stories big and small about the organization, including a “psychedelic” phase in the 1970s.
Gazette delivers shocking report about sexual assault in military
If life were an academic class, community blogger John W. Eyster would make Anna Marie Lux's recent column, "Veteran speaks out against sexual assault in the military," required reading. Eyster was shocked to learn about the story of Rachel Beauchene, a former service member who was raped by a fellow soldier.
Glen Loyd Video: Train lovers should check out DC Metro
Gazette blogger Glen Loyd loves riding the Metro when he visits his family in Washington, D.C. On a recent visit, he made a video of the experience for train lovers back in Wisconsin.
VIDEO: Dairy veterinarian living dream job at Rock County farm
Angela Kinney always wanted to be a vet for cats and dogs, but now she puts her hands in the air when thinking about working in a clinic. “You have to kill too many,” said Kinney, who speaks with a native Brazilian accent and is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese. Instead, she now cares for 5,000 animals as the staff veterinarian at Larson Acres dairy farm in western Rock County. Meet Kinney—and her cows—by watching this video.
PHOTOS: Milton versus Fort Atkinson football
The Milton Red Hawks lost their fourth straight game to open the season but held the visiting Fort Atkinson Blackhawks scoreless in the second half to salvage something to build on going forward. The Gazette was there to capture the action.