Best of The Gazette, Sept. 9: An anniversary, a horse and basketball great


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 look at of some of The Gazette's best content from the last week or so:


Arkansas man travels by horse through Janesville in journey around America

Tye Sturgeon, 20, has been riding almost every day since he set out March 15 from Arkansas with the goal of traveling through every continental state. He is trying to raise $30,000 for a group that helps children who have faced adversity achieve their cowboy-themed dreams. With 800 to 1,000 miles behind him, he knows there's plenty of road ahead.

One simple act can dramatically help children, pediatrician says

Dipesh Navsaria appears playful in his bow tie and boyish grin. But the Madison pediatrician is serious about the prescription he gives to parents of preschool children. “Read to them every day,” he advises. When taken seriously, he believes the simple act can dramatically improve the outcome of their lives.


Parker great Mistie Bass ready for WNBA Finals

Parker High School alumna Mistie Bass is arguably the greatest girls basketball player in Wisconsin high school history. But not until now has she had a chance to win a professional championship. The WNBA finals run through Wednesday, Sept. 17, and Bass is playing for the Phoenix Mercury. “It doesn't get much bigger than this,” she says.

Jesse Collins: Delavan-Darien's dual threat

Jesse Collins is more than ready for the challenge of attending the United States Coast Guard Academy. Need proof? The Delavan-Darien senior delivers it every Friday night. The 6-foot, 190-pound Collins is the reigning Southern Lakes Player of the Year in football and has the Comets off to a 3-0 start this season. Yet he still isn't satisfied. “I'm probably too hard on myself sometimes and I get down, but that's why I have such great coaches and teammates to pick me up,” he said.


Our Views: Two moves could boost business in Janesville's downtown

Last week, Janesville's alcohol licensing advisory committee made to calculated moves: It recommended that the city council grant a liquor license so a pair of Janesville residents can open Whiskey Ranch Bar and Grill in the former Quotes building, and it also agreed to let tavern and restaurant owners decide whether to allow dogs in outside seating areas. Neither decision was simple, but both could be big for downtown, The Gazette Editorial Board writes.

Our Views: Milton wise to use caution concerning Bill Watson, SWAG plan

No one should blame the Milton City Council for voting last week not to invest time and resources into examining Bill Watson's development plans at Interstate 90/39 and County M, The Gazette Editorial Board writes. Yes, the interchange would be great for Milton. But it bears repeating: Officials must weigh whether the potential for jobs and tax revenue overrides the possibility that someday Watson will say, “Well, I tried, but now we must mine gravel to pay off the interchange costs.”


Joan Neeno: Good food, prices make Skip's worth a visit

Skip's Friendly Village is a real-deal Sconnie bar in the best sense of the word, restaurant reviewer Joan Neeno writes. The inside is old, dark and decorated with photos of anglers. The burgers are top-notch. The service is kind of relaxed, but in a place such as Skip's, that's what you get. It might not be attentive, but it is indeed friendly.

JPAC marks 10 years as cultural hub in Janesville

Tony Bennett is the wrong answer when asked which production opened the Janesville Performing Arts Center in September 2004. The correct answer is “Janesville in Stages,” a production that showcased local arts groups that officially opened the $4.3 million center—and outdrew Bennett—one night earlier. Ten years later, the 88-year-old Bennett is still touring and Janesville is still moving through stages. Here's a look back at a decade of JPAC.


John W. Eyster: Father's fight against heroin hits home

A heroin epidemic has been sweeping the nation, and small Wisconsin towns are no exception, community blogger John W. Eyster writes. One story in particular, about a northwestern-Wisconsin father's fight to save his son from the drug, hit home for Eyster.

Glen Loyd Videos: Everywhere, the young

Bill Stoke's writing is reminiscent of Mark Twain. And there is a lot of sparkle in the 82-year-old's eyes. In Glen Loyd's latest video, the last of a series featuring Stokes, the author reads a passage from "The River is Us" focusing on nature's youth.