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Wed
12
Dec

River Ridge students immerse into computer coding


Sue Kuenster, River Ridge’s technology integrator/computer lab assistant, works through one step of the Grinch Hour of Code game with third grader Colton Crubel. (Photos by Correne Martin)

Third grade students Zoey Neeley and Kynzlie Mullins discuss the correct answer in figuring out the coding game they played.

Above is one example of how blocks can be dragged and dropped together to write computer programming commands, or code.

By Correne Martin

Computers run on their own language called code. 

As the world evolves, writing and understanding that code becomes more foundational for the masses of jobs out there—some that may not even exist yet. 

According to the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics (2013), by 2020, there will be 1.4 million computer-science-related jobs available and only 400,000 graduates with the skills to apply for those jobs. This, as River Ridge Schools’ Technology Integrator Sue Kuenster said, means a majority of employees are coming from other countries to fulfill these needs. 

“We want our youth to show interest in code,” she stated. 

Wed
12
Dec

City tax bills to decrease

By Correne Martin

The overall tax bill for Prairie du Chien taxpayers is projected to decrease, according to the 2019 city budget appropriated at a special common council meeting Tuesday night, Dec. 11. On the customary $100,000 value home, taxes are anticipated to go down by $387.53.

The primary revenue generator for the city is the property tax levy. It, in fact, generates 42 percent of the municipality’s income. The budget documents state that the city’s levy in 2019 represents a $226,243, or 9.32 percent, increase. The levy in 2018 increased 2.95 percent. 

Wed
12
Dec

Area residents discuss McGregor Lake Project


Megan McGuire of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers gives a presentation about the McGregor Lake Project in the Prairie du Chien City Hall Tuesday night.

 

By Ted Pennekamp

 

There were 26 people, including Prairie du Chien area residents, U.S. Fish and Wildlife personnel, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers personnel, and members of the Iowa and Wisconsin DNRs at a meeting Tuesday night in the Prairie du Chien City Hall to discuss the McGregor Lake Project in Pool 10 between Prairie du Chien and Marquette-McGregor.

Mon
10
Dec

Holiday Parade twinkles


Santa and Mrs. Claus brought their radiant carriage to Prairie du Chien for the community’s annual Holiday Parade Friday, Dec. 7. For more photos, see page 7. (Photos by Correne Martin)

A festive Tonya Jones, of Dental Associates in Prairie du Chien, tossed out dental floss to the youngsters along the parade route.

Joseph and Mary, aka Josh and Gracie Ferries, helped tell the real story of Christmas and the birth of baby Jesus, atop the Grace Lutheran Church float in Friday’s parade.

At the Prairie du Chien Area Chamber of Commerce’s Holiday Parade, the business community always gets into the spirit by illuminating their vehicles, floats and even the winter clothing of those walking and passing out candy. Bob’s Towing’s reindeer appeared to take flight right on Blackhawk Avenue.

The local Girl Scouts were out in full force, spreading Christmas cheer to all who dared to brave the cold as well.
Mon
10
Dec

American Idol contestant delivers message of revival from bullying in PdC


2013 American Idol contestant Jada Vance, 22, performed at Prairie du Chien High School Dec. 5, and shared a powerful message about her experiences with bullying when she was a teen. She is pictured with her guitarist Conner Fersher.

During time for questions, Lily Kregel raised her hand and told Jada she was dared to ask her to sing on stage together. Jada welcomed the teen up and the two sang a bit of a a Carrie Underwood tune. (Photos by Correne Martin)

By Correne Martin

From the American Idol stage to that in the new Prairie du Chien High School Performing Arts Center, Jada Vance rocked her style of country music for an attentive group of local students Dec. 5. The 22 year old also shared her personal and powerfully real experiences with bullying she lived through as a teenager.

Six years ago, at the age of 15, Jada tried out and sang her way into the top 45 of the illustrious American Idol competition. The Portland, Tenn.-native thrilled the audience with her blend of bluegrass, gospel and country before she was eliminated from season 12, right before the live rounds of the television show. 

Mon
10
Dec

Droppin’ of the Carp discontinued

Carp Fest still on

By Correne Martin

Most special occasions take a dedicated amount of preparation and effort. If they go off without a hitch, and are successful, it’s likely that they’re planned again and again. If it’s a public activity that evolves annually, and offers people that something different, it may continue fulfilling its capacity in the community year after year. 

Still, events come and go. Some take a hiatus for a year or two, and then return in an altered state.

Mon
10
Dec

Two new bridges would greatly improve emergency response time


This map shows the locations of two new bridges proposed for the Kickapoo River in Crawford County. (Map courtesy of the Crawford County Highway Department)

 

By Ted Pennekamp

 

In his grant application to the State of Wisconsin Division of Emergency Management, Crawford County Highway Commissioner Dennis Pelock states that two proposed bridges to span the Kickapoo River would improve response time to emergencies during floods by one to one-and-a-half hours.

Wed
05
Dec

Driftless Development to host 2019 Economic Outlook

Driftless Development Inc. (DDI) invites all area businesses and residents to attend the “2019 Economic Outlook: A Vision for Our Future” on Monday, Dec. 10. The event will take place at the historic Dousman House on the riverfront in Prairie du Chien from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., with the program starting at 5:30 p.m. The event will feature a community-wide celebration of 2018 accomplishments and an economic outlook for 2019 and beyond in the greater Crawford County region.

Wed
05
Dec

Bridgeport Fire awarded grant toward grain bin rescue equipment needs

Accessories purchase to supplement Wauzeka Fire rescue tube

By Correne Martin

The Bridgeport and Rural Prairie du Chien Fire Department is one of 160 rural emergency service agencies receiving a portion of $450,000 in grants from Compeer Financial’s corporate giving program, Fund for Rural America. The local department was awarded $2,100, with which it will purchase grain bin rescue equipment.

According to fire chief Russ Gillitzer, the department feels obtaining such equipment is for the greater good of Crawford County and its surrounding communities. The purchase should be finalized in the next week or so.

Wed
05
Dec

Band students get personal with Israeli ensemble


Sofi Tsedaka and two of her bandmates, Yonnie “Jonathan” Dror (left) and Yshai Afterman, shared a laugh as she tried to navigate the English language and find the right words in explaining the ensemble’s collaborative work. (Photos by Correne Martin)

Director Matt Lenz leads his band students through practicing “Reverberations,” in front of Sofi and the Baladis.

By Correne Martin

Prairie du Chien High School band students were fortunate to have a few moments of international interaction right in their own music room Nov. 29, during a weeklong Arts Midwest World Fest school district residency with Sofi and the Baladis, a musical ensemble from Israel. 

It was a chance for the youth to ask questions and learn from the multi-lingual professionals, who, in turn, had plenty of queries about the American music culture as well as the students’ personal experiences. 

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