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Planners urge business development on Chrysler site

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A new study is recommending redevelopment of the former Chrysler site as a business park and innovation center, but planners caution the project will take years to complete.

The Urban Land Institute presented its findings Friday morning during a panel discussion at the Kenosha Public Museum, calling for creation of a small-business innovation center, along with a business park and sports center.

Land planning, development and landscape design experts from the institute have been working in Kenosha for the last week, studying the site and meeting with city officials, business leaders and local residents.




Snapshot: Coast Guard chief works to keep the waters safe

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Senior Chief Joseph J. Svendsen, boatswain's mate senior chief petty officer, is the officer in charge of Coast Guard Station Kenosha.

Svendsen, an 18-year veteran, served in Florida, California, Texas and Louisiana before coming here.

Event briefs: VA center sets local open house

NORTH CHICAGO, Ill. — The Capt. James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center is hosting a town hall meeting at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Southwest Library, 7979 38th Ave.

The meeting will be an open forum for patients, their families and the community to ask Lovell FHCC leadership questions about the facility’s programs and services.

County to reconsider employee pay classifications

A pay study that proposes reclassifying position compensation for Kenosha County employees is headed back to committee.

County Board supervisors voted 10-9 to refer the study back to the Finance and Administration Committee after a lengthy discussion Tuesday night over whether the positions for legal secretaries who work for circuit court judges should have been “demoted” in pay level in the proposed wage schedule.

County to pilot caddie program this summer

A program that aims to teach local youths to be caddies will be introduced at a Kenosha County golf course this summer.

The Caddie and Leadership Academy of Southeast Wisconsin, which is modeled after an elite PGA program, will begin in June at Petrifying Springs Park Golf Course, according to Dan Drier, general manager of golf operations for the county.

‘Superheroes’ run for kids

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Superman, Batman, He-Man and a Mexican wrestler were just some of the superheros seen on the Carthage campus Saturday morning.

They, along with other runners, came out for the second annual “Every Kid Needs a Superhero” 5K run/walk for the Kenosha Boys and Girls Club.

Teens launch clothing boutique with fashion show

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Rudie Mitchell and Milena Giles have been BBFs since the fourth grade, and like many girls, enjoy shopping and discussing the latest fashions.

Now the 17-year-olds are taking their mutual interests to the next level by launching an online boutique called Dream Closet.

Interest grows in going green

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Going green was on the minds of visitors as they streamed into Gateway Technical College Saturday for the eighth annual Celebrate Earth Day.

The event featured a myriad of displays, workshops and hands-on activities, all with environmental-friendly intents.

News briefs: Burglars nab electronics, guns

Approximately $17,000 in items were taken during a burglary that occurred between 5:25 a.m. and 4 p.m. Friday at an apartment in the 4600 block of Seventh Avenue.

According to police, taken was a small safe containing cash, watches, and a iPhone. Also taken were rifles, a shotgun, a PlayStation gaming unit, numerous games, two pairs of headphones, an iPpad, a laptop computer and five bottles of cologne.

One-woman show to tackle date rape, assault

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A one-woman show aims to help educate young people about the threat of drink spiking and drug-facilitated sexual assault.

“Dissolve,” a nationally recognized, “hilarious and heartbreaking” performance, will be hosted by the University of Wisconsin-Parkside at 7 p.m. on Thursday.

Event briefs: Volunteers needed for community garden

KENOSHA — A volunteer orientation for Down to Earth Community Garden will be 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Monday in the Pike Creek Horticulture Center at Gateway Technical College, 3520 30th Ave.

Guests will learn more about the community garden and how to get involved.

Somers fire chief announces resignation

Just eight months into his employment with the Town of Somers Fire Chief Thomas Smith has turned in a notice of resignation.

“I’m choosing to follow other endeavors at this time,” the April 23 memo read in part. His stated last day will be May 8.

Proposed TIF would aid Salem industrial park

SALEM — One year to the month after Gov. Scott Walker signed a bill extending tax incremental financing power to qualifying towns, Salem has taken official steps toward creating a new financing district.

Tax Incremental District No. 1 would help finance the development of the Salem Business Park, a partnership between the town and the Kenosha Area Business Alliance. Its boundaries encompass an 81-acre tract of land a half-mile west of Highway 83, north of Highway C.

Cleanup begins at former Wilmot Grade School

WILMOT — Work to clear broken debris from the former Wilmot Grade School Building — the result of a significant amount of vandalism — began Friday.

Trevor-Wilmot School Superintendent George Steffen said Paul Davis Restoration provided a cleanup crew and will serve as a general contractor to get quotes for needed repairs.

Tool salesman charged with firing gun, obstructing police

When a phone and some money were stolen from the cab of a Cornwell Tools truck recently, police say the seller fired one shot from his gun as he chased the thieves down a residential street.

Daniel K. Blough, 33, of Pleasant Prairie, was in an alley in the 2900 block of 64th Street about noon April 17 selling tools out of the back of the truck to several customers, according to the criminal complaint, when he noticed someone in the cab of the truck. He took off after the suspect and his gun went off during the chase.

Kenosha woman charged in non-fatal shooting

A 37-year-old Kenosha woman was charged Friday with injury by negligent use of a weapon after shooting a 40-year-old man Wednesday night in a home the 1800 block of 89th Street.

Tonya Beining said the shooting was accidental, according to the police report. The 40-year-old man told officers he shot himself in the leg and then changed his story, saying the shooting occurred during an argument.

Teens charged after high-speed chase

Two teenagers have been charged in connection with a high-speed chase and crash on March 31.

Damazz S. Washington, 17, of Kenosha, and Javelle Peeples, 17, of Pleasant Prairie, were arrested after a middle-of-the-night chase stemming from an attempted traffic stop.

Judge limits DA’s scope in suitcase murder trial

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Prosecuting the former police officer accused of murdering two women and leaving their bodies in suitcases outside Lake Geneva got a bit trickier Friday, when a judge limited the information the district attorney’s office can introduce at trial.

Steven Zelich, 53, of West Allis, is charged in Kenosha County with homicide and hiding a corpse for the August 2012 killing of Jenny Gamez.

Volunteers pitch in to clean up downtown Kenosha

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Work gloves were lined up on picnic tables awaiting the roughly 60 volunteers who patrolled through downtown Kenosha Friday, picking up litter. Volunteers worked all day, splitting into a morning and an afternoon group.

Downtown Kenosha Inc. Executive Director Chris Naumann, who organized the cleanup event, was happy with the turnout.

Flaming-hot pizza bag leads police to alleged robbers

A flaming delivery bag led Kenosha police to the alleged culprits in the robbery of a pizza driver.

Three Kenosha men were charged Friday for their involvement in the strong-armed robbery in the 2000 block of 62nd Street late Wednesday night.

Terri Ward: View community food security through three lenses

Recently my colleague, Leigh Presley, Kenosha County UW-Extension Agriculture Educator, taught us about sustainable community food systems in her article, “Dissecting Kenosha County’s food system.”

She urged us to get involved by “participating in policies that influence those food systems.” What stood out was the need to consider three distinct lenses of food production and consumption: environmental, social, and economic perspectives.

Event briefs: Have breakfast with SpongeBob

KENOSHA — A pancake breakfast with SpongeBob will take place 8 a.m. to noon Sunday at the Moose Lodge, 3003 30th Ave.

Cost is $7 for adults and $4 for children under 12. Proceeds will benefit the Safe Harbor Humane Society.

Exel issues local layoff notification

PLEASANT PRAIRIE — Exel, a logistics company that leases 1 million square-feet of space at LakeView Corporate Park, this week announced 98 employees will be laid off effective June 22 as a result of a lost contract.

Exel was providing packing and other services for SC Johnson & Son out of the Pleasant Prairie facility. SCJ will transition its logistics services from Exel to American President Lines. APL is offering to employ an undisclosed number of the soon-to-be displaced Exel employees, the majority of whom live within a short driving distance to the Pleasant Prairie location.

Sharing the pain of addiction

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Tyler Lybert at 11 years of age, was exuberant, but overweight and awkward.

He thought that drinking alcohol with other kids and later using drugs would dull the pain of not fitting in. Then, it became a way of life, one that almost killed him and set off a firestorm which would leave his sister resentful, and the marriage of his parents in shambles.

Incorporation dominates Somers annual town meeting

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Compensation for the town board came up at the Somers annual town meeting Thursday but incorporation dominated the discussion.

Somers Town Attorney Jeff Davison said everything hinges on the Secretary of State issuing a village certificate officially recognizing incorporation. He said the first Village board meeting is expected to be Tuesday after the town board meeting by what he called the caretaker board. Village Board election would likely be June 9 if they get the certificate in the next 10 days.

Randall approves rezoning request

RANDALL — A request to rezone a 16.87-acre agricultural parcel adjacent to KD Park and split it into three residential properties garnered approval from both the Randall Plan Commission and Town Board Thursday.

“It is consistent with our land use plan,” town chairman Bob Stoll said.

Sen. Wanggaard seeks easier access to CBD oil

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A Republican state senator is circulating a proposal designed to help make a marijuana byproduct available to treat people with seizures a year after it was legalized but still not accessible.

The Legislature last year passed a bill allowing the use of cannabidiol oil, but no one has been able to legally access it because of red tape.

What to do with Chrysler site?

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Whatever the former Chrysler Engine Plant site morphs into years from now, don’t expect a mega mall or a huge industrial park.

It won’t also be a 109-acre residential subdivision adding to the surrounding neighborhoods’ already high population density, Mayor Keith Bosman said Thursday.

News briefs: Numerous cars vandalized

At least 25 vehicles were vandalized in a neighborhood just south of a shopping plaza in the 2200 block of 80th Street early Wednesday morning, according to the Kenosha Police Department.

Officers said a number of the vehicle’s windshields appeared to be smashed by an unknown round object. The vehicles were parked in the 2300 to 2500 blocks of 81st and 82nd streets.

Mayor says engineering costs, not Chrysler prospects, could scuttle streetcar plan

Even if plans were to materialize to extend Kenosha’s streetcar tracks westward as part of the former Chrysler site’s redevelopment, the work would be too far down the line to derail the city’s $10 million plan to add a north-south route within two years, Mayor Keith Bosman said Thursday.

“I don’t see that happening,” Bosman said. “For one thing, we have to spend the ($8 million federal) grant money by August 2016, or we lose it. The Chrysler site won’t even be cleaned up for at least three years. From what I’m hearing, it’s likely to be closer to five years.”

Snap-on earnings rise 15 percent

Snap-on Inc. Thursday attributed first quarter net earnings of $110.5 million, a 15.2 percent increase over last year, to overcoming a foreign currency exchange loss in the international market and to a strong financial performance in the tools group.

The Kenosha-based company, a global leader in the production and marketing of tools, equipment, diagnostics, repair information and systems solutions, reported earnings per share of $1.87, up from last year’s $1.62 per share.

Cancer survivor hopes to inspire 5-K participants

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After beating cancer twice in two years, Lynell Cunningham has a new outlook on life.

The Kenosha resident will provide the inspiration as the guest speaker at the 27th annual Sole Burner 5-kilometer Cancer Run-Walk Saturday at the Kenosha Public Museum. Cunningham, 55, is expected to address hundreds of participants about 30 minutes before the start of the 10 a.m. run-walk.

Harborside students stage mock crash

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As far as homework assignments go, it was quite a production.

About 650 students from Harborside Academy and Reuther High School gathered outside their shared school Thursday morning to watch a mock accident scene, with Kenosha police and firefighters turning up to deal with the two smashed cars on 10th Avenue, while students acted out the parts of the accident victims.

Kenosha man gets 5 years in prison for heroin death

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A Kenosha man who provided a friend with the heroin that killed him was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison.

Jason Fornwalt, 33, was charged with and pleaded guilty to reckless homicide in connection with his friend’s September 2013 death, even though he was not present when the man injected the heroin and died. The law allows someone who provides the drugs used to overdose to be charged with homicide.

Badger Exam opt-out movement lacks steam in Kenosha area

While hundreds of parents around Wisconsin are opting their children out of the Badger Exam, families in the Kenosha Unified School District are not tuning in to the controversy.

Students in elementary and middle school are taking the Badger Exam this spring, the first — and possibly last — time students are taking the new standardized exam that replaces the Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Examination.

Fix It: Rough stretch on Washington Road sends drivers close to centerline

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Today’s problem: Concerned reader J.L. of Kenosha contacted Fix It questioning the condition of Washington Road.

J.L wrote, “On April 5 the Kenosha News reported that the city will do a number of major street projects and then select additional work for ‘spot concrete and asphalt repairs.’ I would like to nominate one piece of roadway for such work.

Today’s event briefs: ‘Cinderella’s’ final performance Saturday night

“Cinderella (Enchanted Edition)” at Christian Life school, 10700 75th St., has its final performance tonight at 7. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets are $10 at the door — or $8 in advance from the school’s main office.

Panelists ‘holed up’ while studying Chrysler site

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Urban Land Institute experts charged with recommending uses for the former Chrysler Engine Plant site are hunkered down, deliberating information they’ve gathered since Sunday.

“They’re kind of holed up in the bunker now, going through all the information they gathered and putting together their presentation for Friday morning,” Mayor Keith Bosman said. “I understand their sessions (Wednesday and Thursday) can go until three in the morning. And they fly out Friday. So, they’re under the gun.”

News briefs: Illinois man facing burglary charges

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A North Chicago man will face charges for a series of burglaries in Kenosha County, although he is already serving time in Illinois.

Jero Odiscu, 22, of North Chicago, Ill., appeared in Kenosha County court Wednesday for a bond hearing, facing a series of charges for a burglary spree last year in Pleasant Prairie.

Assessment challenges frustrate village

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PLEASANT PRAIRIE — A village assessor is crying foul after a series of companies hired a notorious firm to help lower their tax bill.

Both Target Corp. and Team R n’ B Wisconsin LLC, which owns Famous Dave’s on Highway 50, filed claims with the village alleging excessive assessment for their 2014 tax bills.

Vandals wreck former Wilmot school

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WILMOT — Tens of thousands of dollars in damage has been done to the former Wilmot Grade School, slated to open in June as an autism clinic and day care.

"It is very unfortunate and very sad," said Farrah Sonnenberg, co-owner of Sonnenberg Consultants, which offers early childhood intervention programs to children with special needs. "Every part of the building has been touched. It is devastating."

Wilmot fetes Academic Decathlon champs

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WILMOT — Members of Wilmot High School’s Division II National Academic Decathlon Team were met with applause Wednesday upon their return to school with the championship banner from California.

Members of the team were introduced during the lunch periods and the gold banner was hung in a prominent, permanent location.

$1.5 million bond in Lake Shangri-La shooting

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An Illinois man is being held on $1.5 million bond as he awaits trial for a Salem home invasion and attempted homicide.

Justin Diedrich, 23, of Ingleside, Ill., made his first appearance in a Kenosha County courtroom Wednesday. Court Commissioner Jon Mason set his bond at $1.5 million, saying Diedrich is a danger to society given the nature of the crime of which he is accused.

Chief’s son to join the force

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Since the day he was born.

That’s when Kyle Morrissey determined he was pointed toward a career in law enforcement despite his father’s continuous pleas to pursue a profession in other industries like business or computers.

Police chief to step down

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Kenosha will have a new chief of police in 2016.

On the day his 23-year-old son was appointed as a probationary Kenosha police officer, Kenosha Police Chief John Morrissey said he will retire later this year after 26 years with the department.

Unemployment rate sinking in Kenosha

The slowly improving economy is driving Kenosha unemployment rates down as more local companies have begun to step up their hiring.

Kenosha County’s unemployment rate was 5.9 percent in March, down significantly from 7.3 percent in March 2014. In the city, the unemployment was 6.5 percent, down from last year’s 7.6 percent, according to a report released Wednesday by the Department of Workforce Development.

Snyder: Pick me! Pick me! Cable show looking for TV-worthy junk

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“American Pickers” — the History Channel series that turned your aunt’s rummage sale habit into a cable TV hit — is filming in Wisconsin starting in June.

And before they get here, they’re looking for leads from local folks on where to find the best junk. I mean “treasures.”

Event briefs: 5K run/walk to benefit American Cancer Society

KENOSHA — The American Cancer Society Sole Burner, a 5K run/walk event, begins at 10 a.m. Saturday at Kenosha Public Museum, 5500 First Ave.

Cost for early registration is $25 for adults and $15 for children 12 and under. Same-day registration is $5 more.

Mass contends fatal gunshot was fired accidentally

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Heather Adamski planned to stay with someone else the night she was killed.

She had just started a new job, bartending at Johnny Midnight's, and was happy about it. She went to the home of Amy and Joseph Hernandez when she got off work in the early morning hours of Dec. 4, 2013, and intended to spend the night.

Salem agrees to increase contribution to Sharing Center

SALEM — Residents voted to increase their town’s contribution to the Sharing Center by an additional $5,000 next year at the annual meeting of electors Tuesday night.

By a vote of 16-15, residents agreed to increase funding to the center from $10,000 they approved for this year to $15,000 in 2016.

Parkside grappling with $2 million deficit

The University of Wisconsin-Parkside knows it has to plan for some cut in state funding over the next biennium, but there’s been no word yet on exactly how much, and administrators are doing the best they can to minimize the impact on campus.

Gov. Scott Walker's budget includes a proposed $300 million cut to the UW System. Parkside officials have previously said if that cut is spread equally over the universities, as past cuts have been, Parkside would see a 13 percent cut in funding.

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    Somers fire chief announces resignation

    Just eight months into his employment with the Town of Somers Fire Chief Thomas Smith has turned in a notice of resignation.

    Proposed TIF would aid Salem industrial park

    SALEM — One year to the month after Gov. Scott Walker signed a bill extending tax incremental financing power to qualifying towns, Salem has taken official steps toward creating a new financing district.

    Cleanup begins at former Wilmot Grade School

    WILMOT — Work to clear broken debris from the former Wilmot Grade School Building — the result of a significant amount of vandalism — began Friday.

    Tool salesman charged with firing gun, obstructing police

    When a phone and some money were stolen from the cab of a Cornwell Tools truck recently, police say the seller fired one shot from his gun as he chased the thieves down a residential street.

    Kenosha woman charged in non-fatal shooting

    A 37-year-old Kenosha woman was charged Friday with injury by negligent use of a weapon after shooting a 40-year-old man Wednesday night in a home the 1800 block of 89th Street.

    Teens charged after high-speed chase

    Two teenagers have been charged in connection with a high-speed chase and crash on March 31.

    Judge limits DA’s scope in suitcase murder trial

    5

    Prosecuting the former police officer accused of murdering two women and leaving their bodies in suitcases outside Lake Geneva got a bit trickier Friday, when a judge limited the information the district attorney’s office can introduce at trial.

    Volunteers pitch in to clean up downtown Kenosha

    5

    Work gloves were lined up on picnic tables awaiting the roughly 60 volunteers who patrolled through downtown Kenosha Friday, picking up litter. Volunteers worked all day, splitting into a morning and an afternoon group.

    Flaming-hot pizza bag leads police to alleged robbers

    A flaming delivery bag led Kenosha police to the alleged culprits in the robbery of a pizza driver.

    Planners urge business development on Chrysler site

    3
    1

    A new study is recommending redevelopment of the former Chrysler site as a business park and innovation center, but planners caution the project will take years to complete.

    Terri Ward: View community food security through three lenses

    Recently my colleague, Leigh Presley, Kenosha County UW-Extension Agriculture Educator, taught us about sustainable community food systems in her article, “Dissecting Kenosha County’s food system.”

    Event briefs: Have breakfast with SpongeBob

    KENOSHA — A pancake breakfast with SpongeBob will take place 8 a.m. to noon Sunday at the Moose Lodge, 3003 30th Ave.

    Exel issues local layoff notification

    PLEASANT PRAIRIE — Exel, a logistics company that leases 1 million square-feet of space at LakeView Corporate Park, this week announced 98 employees will be laid off effective June 22 as a result of a lost contract.



    Sharing the pain of addiction

    2

    Tyler Lybert at 11 years of age, was exuberant, but overweight and awkward.

    Incorporation dominates Somers annual town meeting

    3

    Compensation for the town board came up at the Somers annual town meeting Thursday but incorporation dominated the discussion.

    Randall approves rezoning request

    RANDALL — A request to rezone a 16.87-acre agricultural parcel adjacent to KD Park and split it into three residential properties garnered approval from both the Randall Plan Commission and Town Board Thursday.

    Sen. Wanggaard seeks easier access to CBD oil

    1

    A Republican state senator is circulating a proposal designed to help make a marijuana byproduct available to treat people with seizures a year after it was legalized but still not accessible.

    What to do with Chrysler site?

    2

    Whatever the former Chrysler Engine Plant site morphs into years from now, don’t expect a mega mall or a huge industrial park.

    News briefs: Numerous cars vandalized

    At least 25 vehicles were vandalized in a neighborhood just south of a shopping plaza in the 2200 block of 80th Street early Wednesday morning, according to the Kenosha Police Department.

    Mayor says engineering costs, not Chrysler prospects, could scuttle streetcar plan

    Even if plans were to materialize to extend Kenosha’s streetcar tracks westward as part of the former Chrysler site’s redevelopment, the work would be too far down the line to derail the city’s $10 million plan to add a north-south route within two years, Mayor Keith Bosman said Thursday.

    Snap-on earnings rise 15 percent

    Snap-on Inc. Thursday attributed first quarter net earnings of $110.5 million, a 15.2 percent increase over last year, to overcoming a foreign currency exchange loss in the international market and to a strong financial performance in the tools group.

    Cancer survivor hopes to inspire 5-K participants

    1

    After beating cancer twice in two years, Lynell Cunningham has a new outlook on life.

    Harborside students stage mock crash

    3

    As far as homework assignments go, it was quite a production.

    Kenosha man gets 5 years in prison for heroin death

    1

    A Kenosha man who provided a friend with the heroin that killed him was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison.

    Badger Exam opt-out movement lacks steam in Kenosha area

    While hundreds of parents around Wisconsin are opting their children out of the Badger Exam, families in the Kenosha Unified School District are not tuning in to the controversy.

    Fix It: Rough stretch on Washington Road sends drivers close to centerline

    2

    Today’s problem: Concerned reader J.L. of Kenosha contacted Fix It questioning the condition of Washington Road.

    Today’s event briefs: ‘Cinderella’s’ final performance Saturday night

    “Cinderella (Enchanted Edition)” at Christian Life school, 10700 75th St., has its final performance tonight at 7. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.