Self-Care :: It’s All About You!

Self-care is a vital foundation of your health. Learn about the programs, agencies, businesses and groups in Marathon County that offer ways in which you can improve your knowledge of your mental and physical health to promote self-care. (Click title to read full article…)

The Childcare Crisis :: Marathon County’s Collaborative Approach to Tackling Local Challenges

Over the past few years, Marathon County lost more than half of its regulated childcare providers. With the current demand for childcare for outweighing the supply, community partners are coming together in search of a creative solution. Discover how the $75,000 Dream Up! Grant is a game changer in developing a strategic plan to address ongoing childcare challenges facing the county. (Click title to read full article…)

Library’s Homebound Program Celebrates 50th Anniversary

The Marathon County Public Library’s homebound outreach program, which provides home delivery option to library patrons who can’t access materials in any other way, is celebrating its 50th anniversary. Discover how this program, run by volunteers, helps ensure all Marathon County residents have equal and open access to information. (Click title to read full article…).

May is Foster Care Awareness Month :: Honoring Marathon County Foster Families

In recognition of Foster Care Awareness Month, we’d like to honor the foster families who provide care for many children in Marathon County and highlight the need for additional foster families. Whether its serving as a foster parent, respite provider, or community volunteer, learn about ways you can help support children and families in Marathon County. (Click title to read article…)

Connecting Marathon County :: An Update on Broadband Efforts

For many of us, the internet plays an important role in our daily lives. The increase in remote work, online learning, and telehealth services with the onset of the pandemic underscored the need for broadband expansion not only in Marathon County, but across the United States. Learn about the history of broadband expansion in Marathon County and the ongoing efforts of the Broadband Task Force. (Click title to read article…)

Outdoor Story Times Are Coming To A Library Near You!

Beginning this Spring, several Marathon County Public Library locations will once again host story times for families to enjoy…only outside! Check out the article to learn more about story time locations, what you should bring with you if you plan to attend, and where you can find the most up-to-date story time schedule. (Click title to read article…)

What’s Your Internet Speed? :: Marathon County Broadband Task Force Partners on Speed Testing Initiative to Help Illustrate Need for Broadband Expansion

The Marathon County Broadband Task Force is looking to county residents and businesses to report their internet speeds through a free speed testing initiative. The data collected will help accurately illustrate the unserved or underserved areas in Marathon County. Read the article for information on how to complete the speed test and how you can help support these efforts. (Click title to read full story…)

Getting to Know Andy Sims :: Assistant Director of Operations for the Wausau & Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department

Get to know Andy Sims, the new Assistant Director of Operations for the Wausau & Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department. Learn about Andy’s favorite parts of the job, what he enjoys doing in his free time, and why he’s so passionate about the amenities we have here in Marathon County. (Click title to read full story….)

Breaking Down Barriers :: Hiring Individuals with Disabilities Makes Good Business Sense

With an unemployment rate near a record low, employers across Marathon County are struggling to recruit and retain workers for their businesses. Discover how expanding your hiring practices to include individuals with disabilities can positively impact your business and help you fill open positions. Plus, learn about local resources available to support you in the move towards a more inclusive work environment. (Click title to read full story…)

The 2022 Budget :: Maintaining Services While Investing in Our People, Our Infrastructure, and Opportunities for Innovation

The most important decision the County Board makes each year is approving the County Budget which identifies our priorities and provides direction on the work to be completed in the next year. Take a look as Administrator Leonhard previews the proposed 2022 County Budget and how this funding plan will help make Marathon County a preferred place to live, work, visit, and do business. (Click title to read article….)

Mental Illness Awareness Week – October 3-9, 2021 :: Join the Conversation and Help End the Stigma

Millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition. Each year during the first week of October, people from across the county join together to raise awareness of mental health illness, fight discrimination and provide support during Mental Illness Awareness Week. Join the conversation and let’s help end the stigma around mental health in our community.

Learn more about the mental and behavioral resources available to you and your family right here in Marathon County through North Central Health Care. (Click title for details).

Big Things, Little Things :: No Such Thing As Zero Waste

Over the past few months Wausau residents and visitors alike have watched the deconstruction and demolition of the Wausau mall. Not only was there angst about the demise of this city center landmark, but also what some thought was a waste of resources. Find out how much of the mall was recycled and how much actually ended up in a landfill. (Click title for details).

WI-Valley-Fair-midway

153rd Annual Wisconsin Valley Fair Returns to Marathon Park (Aug. 3–8, 2021)

Come see this year’s musical acts in the grandstands, take in a rodeo and demolition derby, try out some of our new food vendors, participate in the new Riding Class as part of the Draft Horse Show, and much more!

There’s still time to get involved in the 2021 Fair, too! Bring in items to be judged against other members of the public ranging from Poultry and Rabbits to Vegetables and Photography. Enter the apple-pie baking contest or the Fairest of the Fair’s coloring contest. (Click the title for details…)

Laurie Miskimins

Meet Laurie Miskimins :: Marathon County’s New Conservation, Planning & Zoning Director

We welcome Laurie Miskimins as our new Director of the Conservation, Planning & Zoning (CPZ) Department in Marathon County. She joins us from Colorado with over 10 years of experience in planning, policy development, and project delivery in federal land settings. (And she’s been to 160 of the 422 National Parks!)

Learn about some of the great work her CPZ team is doing throughout the County, and get to know more about Laurie in the full article…  (Click the title for details.)

Treetop_Explorers

Activities & Ideas for Celebrating National Park & Recreation Month This July (Plus a preview of August Outdoor Happenings You Won’t Want to Miss!)

In Marathon County, we encourage you to celebrate Park and Recreation Month this July by visiting one of our City or County Parks. Then take our July social media challenge and share how parks and recreation in your community has impacted your life with the hashtag: #OurParkAndRecStory

Check out our online Spring & Summer Recreation Guide, which is jam-packed with outdoor activities and programming that your local park and recreation professionals have planned for you to enjoy in Marathon County.

Plus, get a bonus sneak peek at some August events like a Dog-Gone Pool Party, Movie in the Park & Family Pajama Party, Marathon County Park 100+1 Anniversary Event. View all this and more in the full article… (Click the title for details.)

NCCAP_MCDEVCO_logos

$1 Million Grant Assistance Available for Rural Small Businesses Affected by COVID-19 & for Rural Residents in Need of Mortgage/Rental Assistance

Marathon County has been awarded a $1 million Community Development Block Grant in partnership with North Central Community Action Program (NCCAP) and MCDEVCO (Marathon County Development Corporation).

The purposes of the grant are to provide relief due to hardships from the pandemic to support low- to moderate-income individuals with mortgage and rental assistance and small businesses severely affected by COVID-19. This grant is available to rural areas only; therefore, the grant excludes the City of Wausau from eligibility. (Click the title for details…)

MCPL-reading_nooks

Recently Re-opened Public Library in Wausau Has a New Look!

All Marathon County Public Library (MCPL) locations returned to pre-pandemic operating hours on June 1, 2021. A closure that lasted more than 1 year gave the library a chance to make some changes at its Wausau Headquarters.

If you haven’t been back to the library yet, check out some pictures of updates you can look forward to at MCPL Wausau, including new, modern furniture; comfy, private study nooks; an updated Teen Zone with charging stations; a beautiful repurposed Rotunda, first-floor computers; and more! (Click the title for details…)

Save the Dates :: Central Wisconsin Book Festival Is Coming Sept. 17-26, 2021

The 5th annual Central Wisconsin Book Festival will include up to 30 events spread across Wausau, Stevens Point, and Wisconsin Rapids, along with various virtual events. Children’s authors, non-fiction, poetry, and, of course, fiction will all be part of the 10-day lineup. Read on to see some of the authors and poets already scheduled to attend. (Click the title for details…)

Judy _Burrows

Community Health Improvement Director Judy Burrows to Retire After 29 Years of Service to the County :: Leaving the County a Better Place to Live, Work, Visit, & Do Business

After 29 years, Judy Burrows is retiring from the Marathon County Health Department. She’s been a key leader in Wisconsin for Smoke-Free Air legislation and has led many statewide tobacco prevention and control efforts and coalitions.

Judy founded the Chronic Disease Prevention Team (now called the Community Health Improvement Team) at the Marathon County Health Department, and was the Public Information Officer in front of the camera throughout the COVID-19 response.

On behalf of the State of Wisconsin, Governor Tony Evers, Senator Jerry Petrowski, and Representative Patrick Snyder issued Judy a legislative citation recognizing her 29-year career in public service. Congratulations to Judy on this well-deserved distinction!

Read the full article to learn more about Judy’s amazing career serving Marathon County. (Click the title for details.)

CWA-Your_Journey_Begins_Here

Central Wisconsin Airport (CWA) to Resume 11 Flights Daily to Detroit, Minneapolis, & Chicago :: Plus, New Evening Flights

Beginning in June 2021, the Central Wisconsin Airport will resume pre-pandemic flight volumes, with more planes leaving Central Wisconsin than there have been in over a year!

Through the summer, Delta Airlines will be offering 6 flights departing Mosinee to Detroit and Minneapolis;
American Airlines is flying 3 times daily to Chicago; and United Airlines is flying twice daily to Chicago. That’s 11 flights daily departing CWA!

Read on to learn more about our local airport’s recent state-of-the-art renovations, low fares right now, and current safety protocols for flying safely. Central Wisconsin Airport… Your journey begins here. (Click the title for the full story…)

Crops_and_Shops_MCDEVCO

MCDEVCO Proudly Announces 10+ Local Entrepreneurial Business Launches, Upcoming “Crops & Shops Marketplace” Events, & More

After 4 months of weekly classes, 35 (volunteer) professional business class instructors, and one-on-one mentoring, 18 entrepreneurs are on their way to launching — or already have launched — their businesses right here in Marathon County with the help of MCDEVCO.  

Learn about their “dolphin tank” experience, upcoming programming for future assistance, and their “Crops & Shops Marketplace” events that feature food trucks and children’s crafts and are open to the public to purchase items that are ag-related (CROPS) or from a small business located throughout Marathon County (SHOPS).  

(Click the title to read more…)

Supervisor_Allan_Opall

From the Classroom to the Parks System to the Government Board Room — Marathon County Supervisor Allen Opall Leads & Serves His Community

After working for a decade as a teacher and then serving as a Park Manager for Wausau and Marathon County for 20 years, Allen Opall got involved in Town of Rib Mountain Government.

He has close to 2 decades at the helm for the Town of Rib Mountain, and spent the last 6 years representing Rib Mountain while also serving on the Marathon County Board of Supervisors. His interest in civics and local government is matched (or perhaps exceeded) by his love for the outdoors. Get to know a bit more about Supervisor Opall in the full article… (Click the title for details.)

National_Skilled_Nursing_Care_Week

Together Through the Seasons :: National Skilled Nursing Care Week (May 9-15, 2021)

On May 9–15, 2021, we’ll celebrate National Skilled Nursing Care Week to honor the collaborative commitment of skilled nursing care facilities and their staff throughout Marathon County in providing compassionate care to their residents during this unprecedented time under a global pandemic. We thank you for your sacrifice, talent, and compassion.

Be sure to click over to the full article to get an inside (and outside!) peek of the new 96-bed skilled nursing facility being constructed at the North Central Health Care Campus in Wausau. (Click the title for details…)

Report_cover

Mental Health Awareness Month — An Opportune Time to View New Findings on Students’ Mental Health During the Pandemic

Through a grant from Security Health, area schools in Marathon County have been able to utilize the b.e.s.t. screening tool to determine how students are adjusting to school closures in terms of their mental health. This has helped school staff to create and deliver interventions to support our local students. 

In addition, the Wisconsin Institute for Public Policy and Service (WIPPS) conducted research with 160 middle and high school students from across Wisconsin (many from our rural schools) in a study entitled “The Voices of Wisconsin Student Projects: Learning, Coping, and Building Resilience During COVID-19.” Read the full article for the project’s findings regarding the impact of school closures on students’ learning and what coping skills they are employing during this difficult time. (Click the title for details.)

New Recreation Superintendent Mark Dorow to Manage City & County Recreation Facilities & Programs

Mark Dorow comes to the Wausau / Marathon County Parks, Recreation & Forestry Department with over 11 years of experience providing recreation programs, with an emphasis on aquatic programming. 

Learn about Mark’s background, his collaboration with Wausau Area Pickleball to offer pickleball classes and a tournament at the newly renovated Marathon Park pickleball courts, and more. (Click the title for details . . .)

Early_Literacy_Center_MCPL

Marathon County Public Libraries Aim for June Reopening to the Public

The Marathon County Board of Trustees set a tentative date of June 1, 2021, for all 9 MCPL locations to return to pre-pandemic hours of operation.

Get the details on what will be available (and what won’t) at that time, and read about some of the great summer programming they have lined up for their dedicated patrons — including outdoor family story times! (Click the title for details…)

An Update from the Greater Wausau Prosperity Partnership on the Wausau Center Mall Redevelopment & Rib Mountain / Granite Peak Ski Area Expansion

The demolition of the Wausau Center Mall in May 2021 creates an opportunity for new development in an 8-city-block area to revitalize the downtown economy. See project renderings and plans for the space, which include a mix of housing and retail with an open, urban landscape featuring a beer garden, 4-season public market, a winding pathway down to the river, and more. 

Read on to learn more about the economic development plans for Downtown Wausau, as well as those for Rib Mountain / Granite Peak Ski Area. (Click the title for details…)

Marathon County Health Outcomes & Health Factors

Marathon County Continues to Be a Leader in Wisconsin for Health

For the past several years, Marathon County has been ranked in the top quarter or third of the 72 counties for our health. Being among the top-ranked counties demonstrates our commitment in achieving our goal of working toward being the healthiest, safest, and most prosperous county in Wisconsin. 

See how the current health-ranking results break down in terms of our strengths — and our areas for improvment — in the full article. (Click the title for details.)

K9_Cop_magazine_cover

Expanded Marathon County Sheriff’s Office K9 Program Featured in National Magazine

What started out as a grassroots effort to raise money for 1 canine in the Marathon County Sheriff’s Office has now grown into a law enforcement K9 program made up of 4 dogs, plus a fund to support all the dogs well into the future. The level of community support for this program — which utilizes NO tax levy dollars provided by the County — has recently garnered attention in national magazines.

Read on to see why Marathon County is making national news (and see pics of our beloved K9s and ways to support the program). (Click the title for details…)

Crafts & Classes • A virtual poetry reading on April 8 with at least 10 Wisconsin poets sharing work collected in the new Wisconsin Fellowship of Poetry book “Sheltering with Poems: Community and Connection During COVID.” Click here to learn more about it. Registration is required, and a link is included on the MCPL page. • All month (or while they last) at all 9 MCPL locations, pick up a Grab and Go project to create pasta sculptures and mosaics at home. Just add some glue and you’ll be surprised with what you can create! Free of charge. Registration to pick up a kit required at all locations except Wausau. • Our monthly Little Treasures craft for adults and teens is a colorful beaded wrap bracelet that would make a nice accessory for yourself or a gift for someone else. Also free and available while they last, so call ahead to schedule a pickup at the 8 branches, please. • Two (identical) gardening classes with Extension Marathon County on April 8 and April 15 on direct sowing and transplanting. These monthly classes are a huge help if you have a garden or thinking about starting one. Registration required. • Professor Brett Barker of UWSP at Wausau is leading a virtual Civil War book club through the Marathon County Historical Society. The group’s next meeting will be April 29. Keep an eye on the MCPL events page or the MCHS calendar of events for upcoming History Chats and History Speaks programs from the Historical Society, too! • Have you watched our virtual story times recently? Take another look with your children or kids you care for. We’ve made a few improvements to our video skills to make some fun videos you can watch anytime! Here’s one example and the schedule for Tuesday story times. • Our book clubs are still meeting virtually, but we have an eye on the summer and we’re hoping we can get together safely outdoors for some literary gatherings. Building Improvements Over the past year, while MCPL Wausau was first closed to the public and later open solely for computer use, we’ve taken advantage of the time to make some changes and improvements to the library. First up was new carpet and windows throughout the building. But the current renovations are a bit more substantial… When patrons are once again able browse through our shelves, they’ll find we changed floors for some of the collections. Also, a majority of the 30-plus public computers will be moved to the first floor so patrons who just need to check email or their social media accounts or print documents can do so quickly and efficiently. Use of the remaining computers on the second floor will be limited to reference purposes such as research or the writing of reports, as well as job applications and creating resumes. Another change that will likely be immediately noticeable is new furniture! We’re replacing tables and chairs and adding new workstations on both the first and second floor where patrons can easily plug in their own devices and tap into wi-fi for their own needs. New furniture also is in the works for our MCPL branch locations, too. Hours & Accessibility May Be Expanding… All MCPL locations will continue with limited operations through at least mid-April, when the Board of Trustees will make another determination whether to expand hours of operation at the 9 locations and/or expand in-person access to our libraries. MCPL’s administration continues to work closely with the Marathon County Health Department on the timing of expanded hours of operation and service. We look forward to a return of normal, but we always want to make sure all MCPL locations function in the safest way possible for our patrons and staff. We also look forward to the day when the public can see all the great things we’ve been doing to update our libraries, and we think you’ll like what you see — when you’re able to safely see it! Thank you for continuing to support your local libraries!

April Activities (& Changes Happening Inside) at Marathon County Public Libraries (MCPL)

Read on for an update on MCPL’s April classes and crafts (like virtual poetry readings and bracelet kits), and learn a bit about some of the renovations taking place to give the libraries a fresh new look. For example, pictured above is one of the new workstations at the MCPL-Wausau Headquarters that offers a place to charge devices as you work.(Click the title for details…)

Community Corner Clubhouse — Celebrating 25 Years!

If you are looking in Marathon County for a resource that has uniquely helped reshape lives, look no further than North Central Health Care’s Community Corner Clubhouse. The facility and its staff help adults with mental illness and AODA (alcohol and other drug addiction) issues realize their potential by providing them with a Clubhouse where they can meet friends, build self-confidence, learn valuable life skills, and discover untapped talents. 

In 2021, Wausau Mayor Katie Rosenburg officially declared April 1 “Clubhouse Day,” marking Clubhouse’s monumental 25th anniversary year serving the Wausau community. (Click the title for details . . .)

BBBS-logo

Meet Marathon County Staff Volunteering as Big Brothers/Big Sisters in Northcentral Wisconsin

In 2019, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northcentral Wisconsin was able to serve 348 children. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, that number decreased in 2020 to 237.

Tracy Vick, Nikki Burkholder, and Zachary Ruesch are 3 dedicated local government employees who volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northcentral Wisconsin. After reading their stories, consider if becoming a Big to a Little in need might be a good fit for you, too! (Click the title for details…)

Score Sheet for Mock Trial tournament

Who Was the 2021 Winner of the 37th Annual Wisconsin High School Mock Trial (Virtual) Regional Tournament?

Each year, thousands of high school students compete around the State in regional Mock Trial tournaments. This year, due to COVID, the Wausau regional competition was entirely virtual.

Mock Trial Participant Abby Trueblood provides an overview of the 2021 virtual event and lets you in on who walked away with the victory, as only 1 winning school (instead of 2) was allowed to advance to the State competition from our region this year due to the pandemic. (Click the title for details…)

Ash_tree_logs.jpg

New City/County Partnership with Urban Evolutions & Wausau School District Repurposes Removed Trees

To date, Wausau has sold 22 cords of ash logs (removed due to concerns with emerald ash borer) to Urban Evolutions, which will enable the Wausau/Marathon County Parks, Recreation, & Forestry Department to use the funds to plant more than 20 new trees. It’s a win-win!

Also, the Wausau School District was recently awarded a grant to purchase a portable sawmill. Teachers plan to develop a curriculum within the district that teaches students the basics of forest products and their utilization. Work products from the sawmill produced by the students could possibly be used by the PRF Department.

Read the full article to learn more about these exciting new partnerships. (Click the title for details…)

Jenifer_Bizotto_headshot

County Board Supervisor Jenifer Bizzotto :: Making Marathon County Home & Civic Engagement a Priority

An accomplished professional and attorney with Judicare, Jenifer Bizzotto has already immersed herself in Marathon County culture and government, though she has only lived here since 2018. 

Bizzotto ran for a position on the Marathon County Board of Supervisors in 2020, and, while she did not win the election, she was appointed by the Board to represent District 2 when former Supervisor Romey Wagner resigned after moving out of the district.

Learn why this young professional was inspired to move to Marathon County from Madison and get involved in our local politics in the full article. (Click the title for details…)

Vaccine-Registration-screen-capture

New Community-Based Vaccination Clinic Opened at Northcentral Technical College :: Ages 16+ May Now Sign Up to Receive 2-Dose Pfizer Vaccine

Marathon County began hosting a regional Community-Based Vaccination Clinic for those in Northcentral Wisconsin on April 6, 2021. 

The clinic is located at Northcentral Technical College’s Center for Business & Industry in Wausau and can vaccinate up to 400 people a day, with the capacity to grow that number to 1,000 a day as vaccine supply becomes more available from the federal government.

See how to sign up to receive your first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in the full article. (Click the title for details.)

vaccine-vial

Marathon County Slated to Open Large-Scale COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic in April

Marathon County will be 1 of 4 new sites in Wisconsin hosting a regional community vaccination clinic. Locations are planned to open sometime in April 2021, when the vaccine is more readily available.

So far, 40.1% of Marathon County residents aged 65 and over have received at least 1 dose of the vaccine.

The Marathon County Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution authorizing County officials to take actions necessary to facilitate the regional vaccination site. Marathon County Health Department staff have recommended that the site operate on the grounds of Northcentral Technical College due to its onsite infrastructure, layout, and transportation access; however, the State of Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) is evaluating the recommendation and should be able to announce a site in the near future.  

Learn more about the vaccine’s rollout and eligible populations, how to sign up to receive vaccine alerts from Marathon County on your smartphone, and more in the full article… (Click the title for details.)

gary_beastrom-award

Supervisor Gary Beastrom :: Exemplifying Dedication to Community

The man they call “Mr. Athens” (of Athens World Fair fame) recently spoke with Wisconsin Central Time NEWS to share some of his personal story, his decades as a teacher and EMT in Athens, and, more recently, his time serving on various boards throughout Marathon County. (Click the title for details…)

Marathon County Special Education - Classroom

March Is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month :: Learn How Marathon County Special Education (MCSE) Helps Students With Disabilities Transition From High School to Higher Education, Military Enlistment, or the World of Work

In Marathon County, approximately 14% of students attending high school are students with disabilities.

MCSE staff assist area students with making a smooth transition to life after high school. For the 2020–21 school year, Marathon County Special Education and ODC collaborated on writing — and then received — a grant for $10,000 to teach courses on healthy relationships and work skills.

Learn more about how MCSE helps transition its high schoolers to higher education, the military, or the world of work in the full article…(Click the title for details.)