Northwoods News

Northwoods News
News, pictures and fun stuff from the north woods of Wisconsin,,,
Our family adventure at the
Forest Lake Country Store
continues into 2017!
As this letter is written the store is in a seasonal closure.   This is the time of year we do deep cleaning and upgrades inside the store.  We plot and plan what menu changes we need, what equipment can be changed, upgraded or moved and more.  And we also spend time with our family.
There is also time to reflect.  We find time to be thankful for what we have in the north woods of Wisconsin.  
The scenery is beautiful.  We miss any opportunity to enjoy the summer.  The store requires every minute of our time and attention.  We do make up for it this time of the year.  Fall lasted months.  Color took forever to come, but then lasted for a couple weeks.  The leaves are long gone, the ferns are matted on the ground and the woods have the dark greys and browns and blacks with interruptions of the bright red of sumac.  Then there are exclamation points of different greens of the pines, balsams and spruce trees.  Snow has been here and gone so many times we have lost count.  Right now, we have less than an inch on the ground!  We know it will come.  It is a matter of when and how much.  Enough of a weather report.
We are also thankful for the time we can spend with our family.  Five daughters, three grandchildren and a Holiday Season of too much to eat.  So many occasions to gather and share stories, laughter and companionship.
We are thankful for the friends that we have made in the north woods.  There is genuine caring for people in a small community that is easy to see.  It is there, somewhere, in a big metropolis.  But is a small town the true love for each other is reassuring and cannot hide in the bustle found in a bigger community.
We are thankful for the chance to build a small business surrounded with all the beauty of the north woods and the genuine care of our friends and customers.  Recently the grocery store closed.  A sign of the times?  Hard to tell.  It is difficult up here. If you only see the area in July it is easy to think it is that busy all year.  Every business fights a battle of not enough staff, highly seasonal business spikes, and the curve balls that mother nature pitches.  We are fortunate and thankful to have established a modestly successful business.  Like all the successful businesses we work hard in the three months of summer to put away enough cash to make it thru the year.  We play defense on our cash from September thru May!  We are thankful for the business we receive, from all our customers, when they visit the Country Store.  It helps us survive this unusual business climate.
Last, we are thankful for the Christmas Season.  The birth of our Lord offers us hope, a renewal in our Faith, and a sharing of this Faith with family and friends.  We are thankful for this chance at everlasting life.
If you enjoy this newsletter feel free to share this with your like-minded family and friends!  Or better yet, use the button below to have them sign up for their own copy!
New Products at the Forest Lake Country Store
Local history and lore,,,
Logging was the primary driver of the north woods economy before tourism.
These businesses needed transportation to bring workers and supplies in and move products out. The railroad was the life line for every town and logging operation.
This book, written by local author Don Williams, chronicles the towns serviced by rails systems before roads were prevalent.
Stop and get your copy when we reopen,,,
Events in the North Woods
2017 Ride with Leinie
New date, more fun,,,  Still at the Forest Lake Country Store
The date for 2017 Ride with Leinie is June 24th!
We will be joined by Dick Leinenkugel, president of the Jacob Leinenkugel Brewng Company.  Dick will lead the 12 mile ride and serve as our Master of Ceremony.
We will still have two great ride options; 38 Miles and 12 miles.followed by our famous brat lunch.  This year we have partnered with Trig’s Smokehouse to serve their award winning bratwurst.
   You can register on line at
Please remember early on-line registration is rewarded with the dapper Ride with Leinie Tee shirt.
Raffle prizes include Two Trek Bicycles, (donated by Steve Bablitch) and a stand up paddle board.
Please gets these dates on your calendar for summer of 2017!!!
 3 Bear Dog Sled Races
February 4th and 5th, 2017
Downtown Land O’ Lakes
30 plus years of Dog Sledding excitement!
Listen to the dogs as they get harnessed up for the race.  Barking, tugging, and ready to roll for their turn at the starting gate.  When they are turned loose, they are silent and FAST!!!
Family fun all weekend long.  Food is available on site.
Adults take turns on the Bark-O-Lounger!
Kids enjoy the Mutt Races
Click on the Dog Sled picture for more information,,,
Neat things for Fun and Education,,,
Land O’ Lakes Arts
Contact LOLA for information about events, volunteering or donation opportunities:
Ph 715 547 3950
LOLA Events
December 4th Cooking Class
Chef Jesse Bortolotti presents foods of northern Italy
December 9th Prep and Freeze for the Christmas season
Chef Arlene Coco
December 15th Leather Bracelets
Wendy Powalisz presents hand crafted ideas
Reservations and payment generally required in advance.  Contact LOLA for more information!!
Look for LOLA on Facebook and their logo above is a hot link to their web site.  The class list is huge and updated continually!
Land O' Lakes Library
Land O’ Lakes Library
Serving kids from 6 to 96,,,
Questions on our services, please call us:
Ph 715 547 6006
Land O’ Lakes Library Events
December 8 Cyber Security & Online Awareness 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Join us for a presentation by Vilas County Deputy Chief and internet security expert Patrick Schmidt on Thursday, December 8th at 1:00 pm in the Community Room at the Land O’ Lakes Library. Topics to be discussed are: Online security, Social network security, Privacy issues and safely surfing the web. Learn how to protect yourself online, bring any questions or concerns.
Other Library News:
No December Movie, our regular Movie Afternoons will restart in January.
We will be closed on Monday, December 26th for the Christmas Holiday.  We wish all our patrons, supporters and friends a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Please note that the Friends of Land O Lakes Library Inc is a registered charity with the Amazon Smile Program.  Amazon donates 0.5% of purchases to the Friends when orders are placed at  Simply go to, log into your existing Amazon account and select Friends of Land O Lakes Library Inc as the donation recipient.  All funds raised benefit the Land O Lakes Library.
And finally, there is good news for the library!!  In February, 2017, the interior of the Land O Lakes Library will be painted and new carpeting will be installed.  To accomplish this project the library will need to close for a period of time.  Julie has put together an explanation of the process and what arrangements have been made to accommodate the needs of library patrons during the renovations.  Stop in to see the schedule.
Headwaters Food Pantry
6516 Olympic 76 Road
Land O’ Lakes WI 54540
Serving families in Conover, Phelps and Land O’ Lakes Wisconsi.  First and third Wednesday of each month.
PH 715 547 3153
Food Pantry Wish List
Christmas is  hard time of year at the Headwaters Food Pantry.  The holiday season always brings more people thru than any time of the year.
All donations are appreciated and help people in the local communities of Phelps, Conover and Land O’ Lakes.
This is a 501C3 corporation making donations tax deductible!  Each dollar stays very close to home!
Cash donations are always used to purchase food items.  Donations of dry goods are also appreciated.  Most desirable is paper towels/toilet paper, soaps for personal hygiene as well as laundry and dish soap are always welcome as well.
Thank you in advance for any assistance you can offer to help the local community.
The Best of the Christmas Season to you and yours,
From your Headwaters Food Pantry Volunteers
Boulder Junction
Chamber of Commerce
Events around Boulder Junction
December 28th  4 PM to 6:30 PM
Between the Holidays Celebration
Located at the Boulder Junction Winter Park on Old highway K
Bonfires, skating, and sledding,,
S’mores, Hot Chocolate, and Hot Dogs
Sleigh rides and Caroling!
Two Moons Dog Sled Demos at 5 and5:30 PM
Fireworks at 6 PM
Check the Boulder Junction Chamber web site for more information
Chamber of Commerce
Ph 715-545-3800

 Events around Phelps
December 11 from 11 am – 3 pm at the Phelps School
School is located at 4451 Old School Road  Phelps, WI
Shop Close to Home in Phelps!
Our Vendors are Your Neighbors with Unique Craft Items and Stocking Stuffers
Enjoy Lunch served by the Phelps Women’s Club
For More Info or to become a Vendor – Call 715-545-3800
More fun events in the north country
Discover Wisconsin visited Conover, Phelps and of course Land O’ Lakes,,,
They heard about the cool winter fun in the north woods, came up to look around and “discovered” the stories were true!
They filmed a segment on the great winter opportunities they found.  Before the segment airs on TV, there is a Premier Viewing up north.

Fit this into your schedule and be one of the first to see this show,,,

February 18th at Conover Community Park

So you say there is nothing to do in winter???

Plan now to head to the Conover Community Park and enjoy a full day of activities sure to cure your cabin fever.  All proceeds are split between Conover, Phelps and Land O’ Lakes Fire/EMS Services!
Look for Recliner Races, Ice Bowling, and Snow Sculpting or Snowshoe Baseball.
And for those who prefer a more serene activity, grab a hot cocoa and a toasty S’mores and climb aboard for a Horse Drawn Sleigh Ride through the scenic north woods.
Kids will enjoy the Dogsled Dash and taking aim in Youth Archery. Funactivities planned for children also include downhill sledding, ice skating, face painting, snowboarding demo and more, with prizes for one and all.
Bonfires and indoor warming areas will chase the chill away.
The Blizzard Blast Bazaar features artisans and exhibitors demonstrating their trade. Held in the Conover Community Center, you will find homemade candies, handcrafted soaps, handmade jewelry and much more.
Activities kick off at 10:00 AM and continue until dusk. There is no admission fee to the park. Snacks, sandwiches, chili and beverages are available to warm your tummy all day long.
One of the biggest winter events in the north woods.  All proceeds are split with Conover, Phelps and Land O’ Lakes Fire/EMS Services!  For more information please call 715 547 8120
Other ways to stay in touch,,,
While the lifestyle in the north woods can be idyllic, information is starting to move at “big city” speed.  We have turned to Facebook more often for new product introduction and noteworthy news.  Click the icon below to “be a fan” of the Forest Lake Country Store Facebook page!

Leave a comment