Northwoods News

Northwoods News

The snow in Chicagoland is nothing like that which is being seen in the Northwoods of Wisconsin right now.  However the chill in the air seems to be the same.  So with a warm cup of coffee or hot chocolate, hearing about what’s happening up north is welcomed news.

December 2014 Northwoods News from the Forest Lake Country Store

We are winding down for a break in the business lull between Thanksgiving and the Christmas Holiday.  It is always bittersweet.  Our customers are like family to us, we miss the time spent with you in the store.  So many people are gone to bigger cities, warmer climes, or wherever to relax or finish your Christmas shopping.  Our end of town is not busy enough to run a business.  Closing is our option.  We will reopen the day after Christmas and take care of some in store maintenance and spend some time with our families in Antigo and Milwaukee.

The weather has truly been winter.  Cold nights and almost daily snowfall are putting a thick coat of white on the landscape.  The summer birds have departed long ago leaving us with blue jays, an occasional grey jay, chickadees and nuthatches and the ravens and crows.  The local bike trails are being used for cross country skiing and snow shoeing already.  Soon the smell of exhaust and two stroke oil will fill the air as the snowmobiler’s lace across the county.  This should be a great year for sledding with the snow on the ground already.  No doubt the groomers will be working diligently on the trails as soon as the deer season is completed.

Check the area Chamber of Commerce web sites for accurate skiing, snow shoeing and sledding conditions.

Events in the Store

January 29th  A night of Port Wines  5:30 PM

Nina Martin will join us to review the different styles of port wines.  We will learn about and taste many of the styles of port wines; Reserve, Ruby and Tawny in different ages.  Each wine will be accompanied with a taste treat that best complements’ the wines individual character.  Please stop by the store or call with your Credit Card number to reserve your seats.

Events in the North Woods

Nov. 28/29 Land O Lakes, WI SANTA WEEKEND Holiday Cheer with Santa

Friday and Saturday Reindeer Search  Friday 10am – 4pm & Saturday 10am – 2pm.  Find the hidden reindeer in participating businesses. Look for the Reindeer sign in the window and begin the search inside.  Get 10 signatures to become eligible for a $25 Land O Lakes gift certificate.

November 28 Events

11AM “A Christmas Carol,” performed by Traveling Lantern Theatre at the Land O’ Lakes Town Hall

1PM    Santa arrives at airport; horse drawn wagon ride to Santa’s Village on Hwy B. Visit with Santa and receive a gift, wagon rides through town sponsored by Headwater’s State Bank, bon fire courtesy of Land O’ Lakes Fire Department and Frontier Builders, and caroling with hot chocolate and cookies. Caroling on stage Santa’s Village across from the library at 1PM All carolers welcome!

2:30-4PM       Santa and Caroling Reindeer Parade to area businesses.  All carolers welcome! Meet at Santa’s Village across from the library at 2:30PM.

November 29 Events

8-11AM          Breakfast with Santa. Gateway Lodge Restaurant. Visit with Santa, gifts and photo opportunities.  Reservations recommended, call 715-547-3321, Gateway Lodge Restaurant.

9-Noon            Meet Santa’s Reindeer.  The genuine species in the reindeer corral out in front of Gateway Lodge. Sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce and the Gateway Lodge.

10-3PM           Christmas Craft Sale Land O’ Lakes Elementary School

10-5PM           Artistree Holiday Open House & Art Bazaar.  Held at LOLA Center for the Arts. Artist Demonstrations – Treats & Beverages – Holiday Inspired Art & Crafts, children’s book signing (3-5PM)

11-2PM           Reindeer Face Painting at LOLA

December 27th Boulder Junction Between the Holidays Celebration

Winter enthusiasts are invited to attend Boulder Junction’s Between the Holidays Celebration on Saturday, December 27, from 4:00-6:30pm, at the Winter Park.

Festivities begin at 4pm with open ice-skating, sledding, bonfire and music by Barb Boston. At 6pm prepare to be dazzled with a fireworks display sponsored by the Town of Boulder Junction.  Chili and hot cocoa will be served throughout the event.

Located just ¼ mile east of downtown Boulder Junction, on Old Highway K, Boulder Junction’s Winter Park facility hosts a regulation sized, fully lighted and maintained ice skating rink.  The warming hut and nearby-lighted shelter has electricity and countertops for appliances and serving food, group seating, and a bon fire area to warm your toes.  The park’s walking, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trail is 9/10 of a mile in length, is cleared and groomed, and is suitable for beginners, enthusiasts, and outdoor-loving families.  A sledding hill is as an added attraction for the youngsters.

The public is welcomed and encouraged to attend this special event on Saturday, December 27.  For more information, please contact the Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce at 715-385-2400.

February 8th and 9th Three Bear Dog Sled Races, Land O’ Lakes WI

The pinnacle of winter fun in Land O’ Lakes.  You can see teams of four to more than a dozen dogs with their  mushers competing in multiple classes of racing.  Located between the Town Hall and the Land O’ Lakes Elementary School, you can walk among the teams as they prepare for the races.  There are other activities including Mutt Races, Barko-Lounger races, ice skating lessons and more.  Food is available. on site.  Check the web site for complete information

February 14, 2015 Conserve School Snowshoe Race with Great Lakes Endurance.

Racers can choose either the 5K or 10K option as they race along single track trails and groomed forest roads. Information will become available at

June 13, 2015 Conserve School will be hosting the 2nd Annual Conserve School Trail Run

In conjunction with Great Lakes Endurance, there will be 5K & 21.1K options. Runners (and walkers) journey on single track trails and forest roads as they explore Conserve School’s campus. Information will become available at

News from the Northwoods

Looking for something cool???  Remember the Snowflake Family Ice Skating Rink  in Land O’ Lakes.  Located between the Town Hall and the Elementary School, the ice skating rink offers a very traditional family activity.  There is a heated changing house to slip into your skates.  There is a pile of loaner skates in the shelter if you are without.  The rink is lighted in the early evening offering a great place to enjoy time alone or with your family.

From our daughter Stephanie, some healthful advice:

It’s the day before Thanksgiving. With the work-week being shorter, taking time off, traveling, kids out of school, it can be easy to say, “I will just get back to my routine next week.” But, I am here to help you enjoy the holiday without setting yourself back!   Here are Thanksgiving survival tips:

  • Get your workout in. Just because it’s a holiday week, doesn’t mean you can’t get your workout in.   I workout on Thanksgiving because I want to burn extra calories so I can enjoy a piece of pie,,, guilt free! If you’re traveling, take your P90X3 or T25 with you, a 30 minute workout is perfect. If you want to get out and enjoy the weather, take a brisk walk or a jog.   Whatever you do, make it count!  Believe me, you will feel 100x better going about your day!
  • Stay hydrated! When we are busy or out of our normal routines, it’s easy to skip water. Get yourself a water bottle, slice some fruit and keep it with you as a reminder. Keeping your water intake up also helps you from overeating.
  • Make ONE trip to fill up your plate and be reasonable. Make sure you get some color on that plate: veggies, sweet potatoes, and salads are good choices. Sure, you need to have the things you enjoy—gravy on your mashes potatoes, dressing, pie, but don’t forget to include some healthy choices too!
  • Enjoy time with family and friends, not the food!  Remember what the holiday is about and be thankful for your health and the people you get to share it with.
  • Drink your Shakeology to keep you satisfied, energized, give your body the nutrients it needs (especially when we aren’t getting all of our usual healthy meals in) and to keep the temptations to overindulge to a minimum!

And don’t forget, I have an AMAZING challenge group starting on Monday December 1st.  It will be a 21 day session and perfect to help you stay focused after your turkey day binge and before Christmas.  The incentive to joining a group, on top of receiving motivation and a place to dump everything, good and bad—customers with new challenge packs will be competing for a huge grand prize at the end of the 21 days AND will be earning $3 per pound lost in those 21 days!!  Not local? That’s fine, we do all of our communication on Facebook and everything is 100% private.  I am always a message or a phone call away.  And husbands–I have a lot of ladies who have Shakeology on their Christmas list.  Shoot me an email at and I will help you pick out the best one for your lady.  Happy Thanksgiving!!

Volunteer Corner

Help Serve the Land O Lakes Area Community

The Land O Lakes area has a multitude of opportunities available to serve in the community.  These opportunities help set the Land O’ Lakes community apart!

THREE BEAR SLED DOG RACE is a regional race this year with more dogs, more sleds and more activities on February 6-8, 2015!  The organizational committee is seeking a Marketing/Advertising person to do promotions such as radio, TV, and social media.  It is also looking for an Activities person to expand the number and type of activities at the event to encourage more spectators.  Both needs begin as soon as possible and will involve up to 5 early evening meetings.  Also needed are Trail Prep helpers and Manning the Safety Stations on the course during the three day event.  For more information contact Pete Schindelholz, Race Organizing Chairman, 715-891-4844.

ISCCW Lake Guards is looking for folks who are interested in helping keep our lakes clean.  Board members are needed for this effort.  The board meets monthly at the Ottawa Ranger Station in Watersmeet.  Committee level participation is also available without being a board member.  Contact Diana Mehlhop, 906-358-4494 or Ken Wendt, 906-544-2607.

The TOWN of LOL Planning and Beautification Committee is looking for an individual to be the Town Walking Path Coordinator.  A designated path through town has been envisioned to inspire visitors during their visit to the area.  Contact Barb Nehring, 715-547-3525.

The LOL Chamber is looking for an OFFICE HELPER to do light computer work, brochure inventory, assisting visitors, and the like for 4 hours per week with flexible hours.  For more information contact Sandy Wait, Chamber Executive Secretary, 715-547-3432

Land O’ Lakes Library Events

Have you taken the time to check out the Land O’ Lakes Public Library web site?  The Library is one of the social centers of town.  The web site is a great way to stay in touch with the events and new items or services offered at the Library.  Here is their web site:

Land O’ Lakes Artisans (LOLA) and Artistree Events

All classes held at the LOLA Center for the Arts Sandra Hardy Brown Memorial Classroom unless noted.  Call the LOLA office for information and to register for all classes.715-547-3950

December 2nd  Silk Dyeing Workshop – Scarves 10:00 – 1:00 p.m.

Adults & Teens $40.00

Join fiber artist, Mary Burns for this introduction to Silk Dyeing.  Patterned silk & rayon scarves will be dyed with two different dyes, one for the silk and the other for rayon, creating a vibrant scarf.  These scarves when finished will have a soft drape and measures 14″ x 72″.  See below for further details, photos and suggested supplies.  All materials supplied.  Deadline for registration and payment is November 25

December 4th  Holiday Inspired – Natural Decorations  Twig Stars, Birch Gift Tags & other Holiday Décor & Tree Trimming Ideas!  10:00Noon $25.00

LOLA is pleased to have with us again….teacher, naturalist and artist, Sandy Lotto of Eagle River.  Sandy is bringing her love of the outdoors inside for this class.  Students will create twig stars, birch bark gift tags and a few other Holiday inspired surprises!  See below for details, photos and suggested supplies.

All materials supplied.  Deadline for registration and payment is November 26

December 9th  Birch Trees in Winter – Acrylic Painting

Home-Schooled Kids Art Class 12:30 – 2:30 p.m.

Children Ages 5 – 16  $10.00 each

Artist Wendy Powalisz will lead a series of classes for home-schooled children.

Using acrylic paint on canvas boards, a study will be done of birch trees in a winter landscape.

All materials supplied. Deadline for registration and payment is December 2

December 13th  Cooking Class:  Wild Game 10:00Noon


Personal Chef Lynn Richie is back to share her “wild” recipes!  Wild game that is….pheasant, duck, elk & buffalo will be on the menu with classic and innovative recipes.  Tastings will be offered.

Deadline for registration and payment is December 6

December 16th  Ornament workshop

Home-Schooled Kids Art Class 12:30 – 2:30 p.m.

Children Ages 5 – 16  $10.00 each

A variety of Holiday inspired ornaments will be made during class, including some with homemade clay and natural materials.

All materials supplied.

Deadline for registration and payment is December 9

Watercolor Wednesdays…on going each Wednesday until the end of March!

10 – 4 at the LOLA Center for the Arts  Free!

Open painting time the in the Sandra Hardy Brown Memorial Classroom.

Coming in January!

Writing Workshops with Author Brian Benson

6 Dates in January Come to one, come to all! 1:30 – 3:30 each date

Adults & Teens $25.00 each class

Ever thought about writing but not sure where to start?  Time to take your words to another level?  These two-hour workshops are guaranteed to get you writing.  Each session will feature a mix of reading, free writing and confidence building feedback.  See attached for dates and details!

Help LOLA welcome Brian Benson back to the Northwoods for these engaging workshops.  Brian has been very busy since he left the area…writing his book, Going Somewhere, doing a book tour on bike and teaching.   Most recently he has been teaching writing at Portland, Oregon’s Attic Institute and is currently at work on his second book.

Food Pantry News

“Giving Back Helps Everyone Get Ahead”

In this season of Thanksgiving, we thank the community for outstanding support of the Head3aters Food Pantry.  Your donations of products or cash allows us to assist so many families in Phelps, Conover, and Land O’ Lakes.  Cash donations are always welcome and help support buying food locally and through Feeding America.

Wish list items:  Toilet paper, dish detergent, laundry soap, paper toweling.

Cash donations can be sent to:

Headwaters Food Pantry   P.O. Box 561  Land O’ Lakes, WI 54540

People around Land O’ Lakes

December 1 is a shared birthday for Ruth Schack, Mery Lee LaChance and Dale Sharpee
December 2  Kristin Barringer and Dan Stetter share a birthday
December 3rd is the birthday for RD Akins
December 4th is a shared birthday for Bonnie Heinig and Jacki Guinn
December 6th Tricia Bresnick
celebrates her birthday
December 7th is Clyde Scott’s birthday
December 10th Bernie Draxler Laurich has her birthday
December 11th Janine Smith ,Dan Benson and Lyle Clayton share their birthday
December 12th Sharon Nye celebrates her birthday
December 13th is a shared birthday for Bonnie Clarke, Wes Geib and our daughter Stephanie Cain
December 14th is Kay MacDonald’s birthday
December 15th is Painless Pete Schindelholz’s Bday
December 16th is Mary Lomastro’s Birthday
December 17th Tom Allman and Chris Ebert celebrates their birthday
December 19th Marilyn and John Annin celebrate their anniversary and shared birthdays for Jennifer Anderson, Nick Piazza, Linda Johnson and John Al
December 21
  Karen and Bob Turnquist celebrate their anniversary and it is John Andrules birthday!
December 22nd  Deb Jablonski’s celebrates her birthday
December 24th is Matt Chayer’s birthday
December 25th Lee Cerk celebrates her birthday
December 28th is a shared birthday for  Donna Dow and Judy Stoney’s
December 29th is Megan Gwyn and Betty Scott share a birthday.  It is also the anniversary for Betty and Clyde Scott!

December 30 is Bill Welisek’s birthday

Of course we also need to remember the birth of our Lord.  December 25th is a great time to have family together, enjoy great company (and food) and swap gifts.  We also need to remember the gift we receive from Jesus.  Share the message with your family and friends.  In a recent Tuesday morning service homily at St. Alberts, Michele talked about “Our” Father, “Our” Church, and “Our” Faith.  These belong to all of us and are meant to be shared.  Eternity is a long time.  Spread the Word,,,

Kris and Mark Gostisha and girls
Forest Lake Country Store
6256 County Road B     Land O’ Lakes WI 54540     715 547 8222

Store Hours

We will be closed December 1 and will re-open on December 26th.  Store hours for the Holiday Season are as follows:
December 26th and 27th 8 AM – 8 PM
December 28th 8 AM – 2 PM
December 29th – December 30th 8 AM – 8 PM
December 31 and January 1 8 AM – 2 PM
January 2nd and 3rd 8 AM – 8 PM
January 4th 8 AM – 2 PM
Starting January 5th we resume our normal winter hours

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