Ontario marks Fourth of July with festivities, fireworks

Ontario hosted its annual July 4 celebration last week.

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Ontario board approves contract for sewer plant 

The Ontario Village Board approved a $93,000 contract with Davy Engineering on Monday for work associated with an upgrade of the wastewater treatment plant. 

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Ontario’s cowboy church

Tor Eness, a rural Ontario country musician, and the Ontario Community Club hosted Cowboy Church on Sunday at the Ontario pavilion. The event served as a kickoff for the village’s annual July 4 celebration. 

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EXTRA

Elroy Fair results

The following are the results of the Elroy Fair, which was from June 19–23. JUNIOR DAIRY CATTLE Dairy showmanship, grades nine and above • Brandau, Cora — Blue, Best Fitted, Top Senior Dairy Showmanship, Hill-n-Valley • Quarne, Domonik — White, Orange Mills •...

Barton waives preliminary hearing, is bound over for trial

By Sarah Parker | County Line Editor Facing 20 felonies related to allegations of theft from the Wilton Village Office, former clerk/treasurer Leigha Barton waived her right to a preliminary hearing Tuesday. Leigha Barton (January booking photo) At a preliminary...

County Highway F is closed until end of September

County Highway F in the towns of Jefferson and Sheldon in Monroe County, between County Highway U and County Highway T, closed to through traffic effective Monday, June 24, to facilitate resurfacing of the highway.  Advance notice signs were posted.  No...

Man dead after town of Kickapoo tractor accident

A man died in the town of Kickapoo on Monday after his tractor rolled over on a logging road, according to the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office.  Responding personnel found that Jimmy L. Kennedy, 65, of Wind Lake, Wis., had been operating a medium-sized garden...

Village of Wilton pool to host swimming lessons in July, August

Swimming lessons will be offered at the Village of Wilton pool this summer on the following dates: • Session 1 is 10 days and runs Monday through Friday from July 9–19 • Session 2 is 10 days and runs Monday through Friday from July 29 to Aug. 9 The cost is $25...

Rural Ontario woman arrested after trespassing incident

The Vernon County Sheriff’s Office 911 Dispatch Center was notified of a trespassing incident at a residence on Hoff Valley Road in rural Ontario, in the town of Whitestown, at about 9:45 p.m. Friday, according to Vernon County Sheriff Roy Torgerson.  Stacie Lynn...

NEWS

Tomah multi-class reunion set for Sept. 6

The fourth annual multi-class reunion of 1950 through 1959 graduates from Tomah High School will be Friday, Sept. 6, at Cranberry Country Lodge, Tomah. Registration for this reunion, designed to bring back graduates over a 10-year period, will begin in the lodge at 10...

Vernon County Sheriff’s Report for June 23–30

Sunday, June 23: A deputy conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle on Highway 14 in the town of Viroqua for speeding. The driver was eventually arrested for operating while under the influence of intoxicants, operating after revocation, and possession of drug...

Ukrainian band to give free concert in Viroqua 

Submitted by Driftless Music Festival Bringing a highly popular band from the Ukraine to Vernon County is no easy task. But, after contacting the Ukraine Ministry of Culture and Information and plowing through some international red tape, the Driftless Music Festival...

Vernon County Sheriff’s Report for June 16–22

Sunday, June 16: A deputy conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle on Highway 56 in the town of Liberty because the vehicle crossed the centerline multiple times. The driver was subsequently arrested for operating while under the influence and taken to the Vernon County...

Vernon County Sheriff’s Report for June 9–15

Sunday, June 9: A citizen reported his checkbook had been stolen and someone had cashed a check for $650. The sheriff’s office investigated and identified a suspect. The suspect was coincidentally arrested for an outstanding Vernon County felony warrant in La Crosse...

Wildcat to offer music, other programs in July

Wildcat Mountain State Park in rural Ontario will host the following programs in July.  All programs are free. Vehicle admission sticker is required.  For more information, call (608) 337-4775 or email Emily.alf@wisconsin.gov.  • 7 p.m. Saturday, July 6...

Royall referendum likely slated for fall

It’s strongly likely the Royall School District will run a referendum in November to raise more money for operational expenses, Superintendent Scott Uppena told the board of education at its meeting Monday. 

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Construction continues at N-O-W

As summer ramps up, work continues on the Norwalk-Ontario-Wilton School District’s construction project, with the new track and football field tentatively due for completion in late July, Superintendent Travis Anderson told the board of education at its meeting June 13. 

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From turtles to weenies: Wilton festival takes on a new flavor

From turtles to weenies: Wilton festival takes on a new flavor

When Shakespeare penned the adage, “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other word would smell as sweet,” he obviously didn’t have Wilton in mind. But when it comes to the quaint village’s newly repackaged festival, it may be appropriate.

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Archives

Community

Ontario Public Library to give out summer reading prizes

By Rachel Conner | Ontario Public Library director Hey there, summer readers! If you are keeping track of summer reading to earn prizes at the Ontario Public Library this summer, get ready to bring your finished sheets to the library between Aug. 1–12 to collect...

Senior menus for July 15–19

Kendall, Norwalk and Wilton meal sites Call 463-7622 (Kendall), 343-3158 (Norwalk) or 487-6130 (Wilton) by noon two days before to reserve a meal. Suggested donation is $4 per meal. One-percent milk is served with each meal.  Monday, July 15: Chicken alfredo,...

Ontario Public Library to show ‘Kung Fu Panda 4’

By Rachel Conner | Ontario Public Library director Friday Movie Night: “Kung Fu Panda 4” will be shown at Ontario Public Library on Friday, July 12, at 5:30 p.m. The movie and snacks provided are free of charge, and all are welcome to attend! Don’t miss Dinosaur...

Wilton Public Library to host events

By Kelly Lupton | Wilton Public Library director The following activities are coming up at the Wilton Public Library:  • 10 a.m. Friday, July 5: Current Events Discussion Group • 12:30 p.m. Friday, July 5: Book Club for Adults with Special Needs...

On Campus

• The following local students were named to the spring-semester dean’s list at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse: Riley Gunder and Brandon Showers, both of Elroy; Danica Lee of Kendall; Adelynn Hyatt, Maggie Muehlenkamp and Evan Wang, all of Norwalk; and Garrett...

Obituaries

Franklin Dwayne Rumppe

Franklin Dwayne Rumppe, “Frank,” 83 of rural Kendall, Wis., passed away July 1, 2024. Frank was born Jan. 30, 1941, to Earl and Crystabel (Jacobus) Rumppe.  He was the last of their 10 children and the only one to be born in a hospital. His name was inspired by...

Eugene H. Degenhardt

Eugene H. Degenhardt, “Gene,” 84 of Norwalk, Wis., passed away Sunday, June 30, 2024, at his home.  Gene was born May 22, 1940, to Leonard and Margaret (Schmitz) Degenhardt in Norwalk.  After graduating from high school, Gene proudly served in the United States Army....

Richard Casper Flock

Richard Casper Flock, 82, of Sparta, Wis., formerly of Norwalk, Wis., passed away peacefully Thursday, June 27, 2024, at the Morrow Memorial Home in Sparta, WI. Rich was born July 7, 1941, to William and Elizabeth (Karl) Flock in Norwalk.   After graduating from high...

Richard (Dick) Beier

Richard (Dick) Beier, 75, passed away on June 21, 2024, at the Mayo Hospital Emergency Room after dealing with multiple health issues over the last several years. Dick was born on March 28, 1949, at the Sparta Hospital to Cecelia (O’Rourke) and Frank Beier of Wilton....

Naasson Aran Brown

Naasson Aran Brown, 63, of Ontario, Wis., was called home to be with the Creator on the 17th of June 2024, while tending to his beloved land in Ontario, Wis. Naasson left this world doing what he cherished most, farming on his hobby farm. Naasson was born September...

Opinion

Letter to the editor: Debate debacle

By Dani Sulik | Kendall Thursday’s presidential debate was painful to watch. It showcased two candidates who were well past their sell-by date. Unless the grim reaper pays a visit, it really is down to these two. Trump was a verbal volcano, spewing lies and dodging...

Your Right to Know: Redaction costs threaten police video access

By Bill Lueders The bill moved with lightning speed. It was introduced last December, passed the state Senate in January and the Assembly in February, and was signed into law by Gov. Tony Evers in March. 2023 Wisconsin Act 253 allows police and corrections officials...

Your Right to Know: Rights clash in records dispute

By Matthew DeFour The Wisconsin Supreme Court will soon hear a case involving records related to the voting rights of mentally incompetent people. No matter which side wins, the public has in some ways already lost. That’s because while the case pits the public’s...

Sports

Brookwood Athletic Notes

Contributed by Ken Clinton | Brookwood athletic director BROOKWOOD FALL SPORTS START DATES • Tuesday, Aug. 6: High school football (4 p.m.) • Monday, Aug. 19: High school/junior high cross country (8 a.m.), high school volleyball (3:30 p.m.), and junior high...

Royall succumbs to one run in sectional final

The Royall baseball team was just one run away to making a state baseball appearance close to a quarter-century in the making. With receiving a first round bye, Royall, the No. 2 seed in the WIAA Division 4 baseball bracket, hosted No. 7 seed Brookwood on May 28 in...

Brookwood athletes compete at state track

Four Brookwood students competed in the WIAA state track meet in La Crosse last weekend: Marshall Doll, 400-meter dash; Wyatt Maurhoff, high jump; Elijah Johns, 110-meter hurdles; and Cooper Powell, 3,200-meter run. Maurhoff placed fifth.  Elijah Johns competes in the...

Royall baseball wins regional

Royall’s baseball team defeated Seneca to win the regional championship on May 29. The team advanced to sectionals, defeating De Soto but falling to Eleva-Strum, just missing a trip to state. 

Track stars make strides at conference, regionals

Brookwood’s Sophie Teynor claimed the track regional championship in the girls triple jump when teams competed at Cashton on May 20. Teynor jumped 31-6.50. When Royall hosted conference, Teynor placed fifth at 29-10.25. (Tasha Mueller photo) The top four individuals...

Backtalk

It will be a seemingly endless campaign season

By KAREN PARKER County Line Publisher Emerita I would imagine if Eric Hovde has secured any demographic in his campaign for Wisconsin Senate, it would be lonely ladies over 40 swooning over his rugged, Marlboro-man-lookalike appearance. You may have noticed that a...

A vibrant press is essential to democracy

By KAREN PARKER | County Line Publisher Emerita Sadly, there was no obituary in the paper for the Vernon Focus. You likely did not know Vernon, but in his past life, you might have known him as Foxxy Shopper. In my salad days, the Foxxy Shopper was the 800-pound...

America’s bent toward fascism

By KAREN PARKER | County Line Publisher Emerita Imagine living in a country where the simple act of gathering together to lay flowers after the death of a prominent person could result in a two-week jail sentence. Worse yet, two weeks in a Russian prison possibly...

In 2024, remember that politics were ugly 100 years ago, too

By KAREN PARKER | County Line Publisher Emerita Good grief! We are barely into the new year, and I am ready to go back to 2023 or leap ahead to 2025. Are we really in for an entire year of presidential election babble? While they exerted monumental efforts to convince...

Looking back on our 40th year, 1983–2023 (part two)

By KAREN PARKER County Line Publisher Emerita Forty years is a long time. Sadly, it’s long enough for most of our area business to have gone away. It’s hard to believe now, but in 1983 Ontario had two bars, two grocery stores, three gas stations, a variety store, and...

Pictures from the Past

Ontario High School basketball, 1949–50

The 1949–50 Ontario High School basketball team sits on the Ontario Community Hall stage. Back row (left to right): Roger Budde, Donald Breidenstein, Bob Bassett, Stan White and coach Joe Ott. Front row: Dale Thomas, Bill Calhoun, Dick Olson, Bill Jantz and Bob...

Pictures from the past: Early 20th century Ontario

These undated, early 20th century images depict Ontario. Can you offer more information on the photos and what they portray? Contact the County Line at (608) 337-4232 or countyline@centurytel.net. (Photos courtesy of Aldis Strazdins)

Palen Park: Before and after

Although Ontario has diminished since the August 2018 flood and the subsequent removal of many downtown buildings, one bright spot remains. Pictured above is Palen Park in 2012. Below are photos from last August featuring the gardening skills of Ontario resident...

St. Luke’s to be placed on National Registers

Contributed by MARIE SCHAUER FINDLAY Descendant of St. Luke’s founders On Saturday, Oct. 1, St. Luke’s Church, located at 30013 Oxford Road in rural Elroy, invites everyone to join them to celebrate being officially listed on both the State and National Registers of...

School

Brookwood names artists of the month

Fernanda Garcia Barr (top), Deja Jimenez (middle) and Sophie Teynor (below) were the Brookwood High School artists of the month for April. Sophie painted an album cover using acrylic paint, Deja created original portraits of the members of the Prom Court using an iPad...

N-O-W highlights for fourth-quarter

By Travis Anderson | N-O-W Superintendent Wow, what a great year the 2023–2024 school year was thanks to all of our wonderful students, staff, and our supportive community.One thing I mentioned in my graduation speech this year was that the old saying rings true, “It...

RMS musicians perform in spring concert

The sixth grade general music group opened the Royall Middle School spring concert May 13 with playing ukuleles to Johnny Cash’s top hit “Ring of Fire.” (Tasha Mueller photo) The sixth-graders have fun throwing pieces of homework in “I’ve Lost My Homework." (Tasha...

Brookwood club hosts trap shoot

The Brookwood trap club recently hosted its trap shoot. The follow are members of the trap club. Front row (left to right): Wyatt Maurhoff, Tim DeWitt, Mason Rex, Jennafer Fennigkoh, Taylor Fennigkoh, Saleen Ford, Zaida Carpenter and Katherine McElhose. Back row:...