An early lead in baseball is everything, and getting a big early advantage in a state playoff game is almost worth the price of gold.
The Menomonee Falls baseball team pounced on Brown Deer starter Drew Worth's four consecutive walks to start the game Wednesday night in a WIAA regional semifinal contest and parlayed that advantage into a six-run first inning, never looking back in earning a 9-3 victory.
"You hate to see that, especially for the kid," said Falls coach Pat Hansen, "but that being said, we needed an inning like that to gain some confidence. ..Scoring runs like that early is the best thing we can do for ourselves."
Falcon coach Mike Donahue, who had to pull his senior ace after the four free passes, was flummoxed at the turn of events.
"That is so very unlike him," said Donahue of Worth, "because at times this year he has been dominating. He just couldn't find it (the plate)."» Read Full Article
Administrators and board members at the North Shore Fire Department are considering ways to reduce the department's looming retirement liability.
That sum, said Fire Chief Robert Whitaker, is in part the legacy of labor agreements struck before the department consolidated in the mid-1990s, as well as more recent agreements. NSFD's post employment benefit, paid to firefighters who are allowed to retire at 50 at the earliest, comprises a health insurance benefit that lasts until Medicare eligibility and payouts for accrued unused sick leave.
"Benefits go back to the start of the organization," Whitaker said at a board of directors meetings Tuesday. "It's a blend of how the benefit was administered."
At present the department spends about $900,000 on retirement benefits, about $400,000 of which is an amount the board decided last year to begin putting away to fund the benefit in the long term. Though the $400,000 does help to mitigate periods where more retirees are drawing benefits, Whitaker said, it's a far cry from the nearly $3 million Milliman estimates the department would need to sock away every year to fully fund the $30.4 million.» Read Full Article
"If you had to win only one (against Bay), it was good to win this one."
That happy shout from the Nicolet side of the throng in place at Aaron Field Tuesday night told the tale of a remarkably one-sided WIAA regional semifinal baseball battle, as Nicolet stunned its higher-seeded North Shore archrival Whitefish Bay with a fast start and never looked back in a 14-2 six-inning rout.
The Blue Dukes, who had beaten the Knights twice already this season (12-0 and 7-6), were no match for the inspired Nicolet team, which improved 14-15 and advanced to a Friday regional final at second-seeded Cedarburg (5:30 p.m.) while Bay's up-and-down season ended at 16-15
Nicolet coach Jason Grodsky pointed to sophomore second baseman Alex Braun's bullet double to the left-centerfield fence with the bases-loaded in the first. It gave the Knights a 3-0 lead and they never trailed after that.
"We talked about having a fast start," said Grodsky, "about attacking the strike zone. This was just a night where we put in place and executed everything we've been trying all season. It all came together."» Read Full Article
Recent estimates from the state Department of Public Instruction show state aid figures varying among North Shore districts.
Brown Deer School District Finance Director Emily Koczela said Brown Deer's estimated 10 percent increase in general state aid is an unexpected windfall.
Aid estimates for other North Shore districts range from Nicolet's decrease of 10.6 percent — the biggest drop among North Shore districts — to Glendale River Hill's North Shore-leading 19.77 percent increase.
The general aid numbers are in-part products of the 2013-15 biennial budget recently signed into law by Gov. Scott Walker. Precise state aid amounts aren't approved by the DPI until October.
Brown Deer — Plan Commissioners on Monday continued to tighten regulations on the incoming Walmart Supercenter at the former Lowe's location at 60th Street and Brown Deer Road, saying the retailer needs to hold to Brown Deer's standards if it wants to play nice with neighbors and attract the sought after "North Shore customer."
Notable conditions added to the Walmart development agreement by the Plan Commission, which the Village Board will consider next week, include rolling back Walmart's standard 24-hour availability to match the village ordinance of 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.; a complete prohibition on gun, weaponry and ammunition sales; requirements for additional parking lot landscaping work, a new pedestrian way connecting the store to Brown Deer Road, twice-yearly cleanings of nearby Beaver Creek, and permanent cart corrals; and a sound-retaining wall spanning the entire length of the north side of the building.
After some debate between residents, commissioners and Walmart representatives, the commission on a 5-2 vote approved a conditional use permit for a one-aisle liquor section. The liquor store permit, as well as approved permits for a garden center and grocery store, will also come before the Village Board next week.
Since the Village Board has already approved the financial agreements that compel Lowe's to pay off a good share of the village's $2.4 million investment in the site, and locks in a minimum property value for Walmart to pay taxes on, the remaining work and agreements beyond what was approved Monday will mostly consist of details, said Planning and Zoning Director Nate Piotrowski.
Marketing to the North Shore» Read Full Article
Shorewood and Milwaukee police are investigating a pair of armed robberies that occurred on North Maryland Avenue this month.
According to the Shorewood police report:
An armed robbery was reported in the 3500 block of North Maryland Avenue about 11:45 p.m. July 1.
The victim said two males, each holding a gun, approached him and took his cellphone valued at $450 and his wallet with $70 cash.
The case is under investigation and no description of the robbers was available.» Read Full Article
Nicólo Randazzo left his Sicilian town after the end of World War II and headed for Venezuela.
He'd been a barber since age 16 — he'd finished the eighth grade and chose a trade because that's what you did then, his son Tony said. Randazzo went to Venezuela for a while because he wanted to be just a little different from his brothers, who had set off for Brazil.
"He didn't want to copy them, at least that's the story," Tony Randazzo said of his father, a longtime barber in Shorewood. He died July 4 of natural causes at a Milwaukee-area hospital. He was 84.
Randazzo worked as a barber in Venezuela for a while, then headed to Milwaukee — drawn here because he had family nearby, in Springfield, Ill.
He worked at barber shops, including one run by a barber who would become his father-in-law, before opening his own place, Lakeview Barber Shop on E. Capitol Drive in Shorewood.» Read Full Article