August 30, 2016
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In this file photo from April, parents picking up children from KTEC-West, 5710 32nd Ave., line both sides of 58th Street, narrowing the two-way street to one through lane. ( KENOSHA NEWS FILE PHOTO BY KEVIN POIRIER )

KTEC-West traffic woes to persist


There is still no solution to traffic issues that could paralyze the McKinley neighborhood this school year.

City and school officials have balked at a $300,000 remedy recommended in a traffic study and instead will better mark restricted areas and up police presence.

Increased traffic and limited parking space near Kenosha School of Technology Enhanced Curriculum-West, 5710 32nd Ave., have pitted parents who drive their children to school against frustrated area residents, many of whom accuse parents of violating traffic laws and even parking in their driveways.

Cynthia Gonzalez holds her newborn son Emiliano Robert Allen with her mother Rosalina Baron standing beside them. Gonzalez was the first baby born at Aurora Medical Center 17 years ago, and gave birth to her son there on Sunday. ( KENOSHA NEWS PHOTO BY GRAHAM KILMER )

Oh baby, baby!


In February 1999, Cynthia Gonzalez was the first baby delivered in Aurora Medical Center’s new birthing center in Kenosha.

Now, 17 years later, her first child was delivered by the same doctor, surrounded by much of the same staff.

Emiliano Robert Allen was born at 1:41 p.m. Sunday, weighing 8 pounds, 3 ounces.

Police released this photograph of a vehicle of interest seen in the area where Bernard Reavers was fatally shot about 8:30 a.m. Aug. 21. ( Image courtesy Kenosha Police Department )

UPDATE: Murder victim was father, friend to all


This article has been revised since its original posting.

A Kenosha man may have been killed because he interrupted an armed robbery when he went to a neighbor’s apartment to loan her a vacuum.

Bernard Reavers died Saturday, six days after he was shot in the head while inside the upstairs apartment in his two-unit building at 6727 24th Ave. Aug. 21.

Downtown Kenosha, as seen from the air in 2014. ( KENOSHA NEWS FILE PHOTO BY KEVIN POIRIER )

Pair of business owners seek to dissolve Lakeshore BID


Two downtown-area business owners have gone to work at trying to dissolve the Kenosha Lakeshore Business Improvement District.

Jim Matzur, owner of the Boathouse Pub and Eatery, 4917 Seventh Ave., and Robert Greskoviak, who owns Villa D’Carlo, 5140 Sixh Ave., are contacting property owners in the BID area to gauge opinions as to whether a collection of signatures for dissolution will bear fruit.

Both of the restaurants are at the north end of the taxing district, with the Boathouse barely falling inside the boundary. The restaurant owners say they have little in common with downtown merchants when it comes to promotion efforts and marketing spending.

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Conservatives reap most political donations


One person’s single donation accounted for 83 percent of the money donated here to political candidates and political action committees.

In early October, Richard Uihlein, using a Pleasant Prairie ZIP code, gave $1 million to Keep the Promise, a PAC supporting Texas Sen. Ted Cruz’s now-defunct bid for president. Other residents of the village donated $53,755.

More money came from Pleasant Prairie than any other Kenosha County ZIP code. Even without his massive donation, with Pleasant Prairie residents donated more than $13,000 above the next highest-contributing ZIP code, accounting for 27 percent of the campaign donations in the county.

Shannon Delacy performs during the Paws for the Cause fundraising event for Kenosha Forgotten Friends at the Yacht Club on Sunday. ( KENOSHA NEWS PHOTO BY SEAN KRAJACIC )

Finding funds for furry friends


A fundraising event for abused and abandoned animals also aimed to raise awareness of those who care for them.

On Sunday, hundreds of supporters of Kenosha Forgotten Friends, a local non-profit, no-kill shelter and rescue organization, attended the third annual Paws for the Cause, which featured nearly 60 items for silent auction and raffle, including a two-bedroom luxury condominium on the Las Vegas strip.

The fundraiser, which took place at the Kenosha Yacht Club and was coordinated by Shelley Nudi in memory of her rescued beagle Quinn, brought in more than $30,000 last year.

UW-Parkside student Colleen Steenhagen works on a commissioned metal sculpture for the university. ( KENOSHA NEWS PHOTO BY SEAN KRAJACIC )

Snapshot: Never too late to learn


Colleen Steenhagen, 57, is owner of Down the Rabbit Hole — formerly a downtown shop, now a booth at HarborMarket — and an exhibiting artist at Lemon Street Gallery.

Steenhagen returned to school at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in 2014, working toward a degree in art with an interdisciplinary concentration in 2-D and 3-D.

In the spring she was commissioned to create a metal sculpture for the university, which Steenhagen has named "Blossom." The metal sculpture is slated to be unveiled to the public this fall.

Mark Amborn and his 11-year-old daughter Lorelai, of Kenosha, play Pokemon Go Saturday evening in Library Park. ( KENOSHA NEWS PHOTO BY KEVIN POIRIER )

Pokemon craze shows no signs of abating


Local Pokemon Go players have logged hundreds of hours crisscrossing Kenosha County this summer in the hopes of becoming “the very best” Pokemon master.

Players of all ages can be spotted from morning till night catching Pokemon at hot spots including Lake Andrea, North Pier, Simmons Island and Navy Park. Less obvious: those scouring cemeteries, churches and grocery stores for the cute “pocket monsters.”

The game, created by Niantic Inc., a San Francisco-based spinoff of Google parent Alphabet Inc., has become an unexpected sensation across the globe — and throughout southeastern Wisconsin.

Kenosha friends, from left, Brian Rummelhart, David Riley, Adam Opolka (from Antioch), Carl Carlson and Adam Gagliardi finish the Ride Across Wisconsin together on Simmons Island. ( KENOSHA NEWS PHOTO BY KEVIN POIRIER )

From shore to shore


Eight hours, 58 minutes.

That’s how long it took the first 23 bicyclists to cover the 175 miles from downtown Dubuque to the lakefront at Simmons Island.

Rolling over the finish line at 3:25 p.m. Saturday, the cyclists were part of a pack of 830 participating in Ride Across Across Wisconsin that began at sunrise, 6:23 a.m., today.

Ed and Denise Gillmore post at OakVue Farm, which on Saturday was designated as the first local historic landmark by the Bristol Historical Society. ( PHOTO BY CHRISTINE VERSTRAETE )

A birthday surprise


BRISTOL — Wisconsin was still wilderness and hadn’t even been declared a state when Bristol resident Ed Gillmore’s ancestor purchased land in 1845 for what would become known as OakVue Farm.

Now 171 years and seven generations later, the farm on Highway Q in Bristol was named Saturday as a historic landmark by the Bristol Historical Society. It was part of a surprise celebration for Gillmore’s 70th birthday, which took place Tuesday.

The longtime local resident, former dairy farmer, 10-year Bristol firefighter and former Village Board member couldn’t get over the honor or the barn full of surprise guests on Saturday.

The pulled pork samples from AMI-Q'n from Union Grove are enjoyed by the Grill Games audience Saturday at HarborPark. ( KENOSHA NEWS PHOTO BY BILL SIEL )

BBQ beats rain at Grill Games


The early morning rain Saturday created a bit of a bog for barbecue competitors, but the soggy ground didn’t deter Grill Games teams from producing some of the tastiest dishes ever to come off the coals.

This was the sixth year of the Kansas City Barbecue Society competition here, which drew teams from the region and from as far away as Indiana and Michigan.

Proceeds from the event benefited the youth scholarship foundations of the Kenosha Area Chamber of Commerce and the Kenosha YMCA.

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Political contributions: Breaking down the data


Money matters in politics, and Kenosha County residents are part of the process, donating $1.2 million to federal candidates and political action committees since the start of the current two-year election cycle.

Major Republican donor Richard Uihlein, who owns Uline, a Pleasant Prairie-based packaging and shipping supplies distributor, skewed the data for Kenosha County with a massive $1 million donation to a political action committee backing Texas Sen. Ted Cruz’s presidential bid.

Fueled by that donation, PACs received the overwhelming majority — nearly 90 percent — of the money that came from Kenosha County. The remaining 10 percent went to individual candidates, many of whom have since bowed out of the presidential race.

Kenosha Human Development Services ( KENOSHA NEWS GRAPHICS )

Kenosha County faces acute shortage of foster homes


The number of children who need foster homes is increasing, but the number of licensed foster homes is not, and that’s a problem.

This May, there were 287 children in foster care in Kenosha County, up 10 percent over May 2015.

To make matters worse for agencies that help children, the number of foster homes is plummeting. Angela Martin, director of residential care at Kenosha Human Development Services, said her organization normally has 40 foster homes available, but now they’re down to 14.

n this May 6, 2015 file photo, a computer-based practice ACT English test is displayed on a computer monito. Central and Wilmot high school composite test results dropped a bit in 2016, mirroring the state's overall slump as more students were pushed to taken it than had in the past. ( ap photo )

Central, Wilmot ACT scores drop a bit


Both Central and Wilmot Union high schools saw a decrease in their average ACT score of 2.3 points, a predicted drop as a result of the new state requirement to test all high school seniors.

“As other districts, we too, saw a decrease in scores for this graduating class due to the requirement for all students to take the ACT college readiness test,” said Gail Netzer Jensen, director of curriculum at Central High School.

Jensen and Wilmot Superintendent Dan Kopp said the districts have just begun to analyze the test data, released earlier this week.

Andrew Obregon appears in court in July with his attorneys Carl Johnson and Kristyne Watson, not pictured. Some 200 county residents will get questionnaires next week as jury selection process for the Danial Obregon murder trial begins. ( KEVIN POIRIER )

Obregon murder trial gearing up


Next week, 200 Kenosha County residents will get a letter in the mail.

The letter — a multi-page questionnaire — is the first step in the process of picking a jury for the high-profile trial of former fugitive Andrew Obregon.

His trial is slated to begin Sept. 26.

Sister Margaret Held, in recent picture at left and from her time teaching in Kenosha at right, was one of two nuns slain in Mississippi this week. ( Associated Press and Kenosha News file photo )

UPDATED: Nun slain in Mississippi taught in Kenosha


About a month ago, former St. Joseph High School teacher Sister Margaret Held ran into an old friend and co-worker at a School Sisters of St. Francis event in Milwaukee.

“We had the nicest talk,” said retired Kenosha County Circuit Judge Barbara Kluka, who taught with Held at in the social studies department St. Joseph in the 1970s before Kluka left to go to law school and Held to nursing school. Held taught at St. Joseph from 1972 to 1976.

“We talked about our lives now. She told me how busy she was and how much she loved Mississippi. She just felt so fulfilled and so happy with what she was doing. She exuded happiness, she really did.”

Andy Bilski is the general manager of the Kenosha Yacht Club's Lake House Bar&Grill. ( BRIAN PASSINO )

Yacht Club restaurant launches anew


It took a few months, but the restaurant at the Kenosha Yacht Club is again open.

Different management and a different menu are not the only changes. A modified agreement with the KYC makes the restaurant management company more of a partner and less of a tenant.

The previous restaurant, Breakwater Bar & Grille, closed its doors in October and did not dispute the revocation of its liquor license.

Somers firefighters tried to resuscitate dogs from a house fire at 7716 38th St. Thursday, August 25, 2016. ( BRIAN PASSINO )

Somers fire severely damages home


SOMERS – Fire killed two dogs and displaced residents of a home in the village Thursday night.

Firefighters who arrived at the scene saw smoke pouring from a second story window as they arrived to fight the blaze at the split level home at 7716 38th St., according to Somers Fire Chief Carson Wilkinson.

One resident was inside the home at the time of the 3:45 p.m. fire and was not injured, he said. The resident called in the fire.

Unified ACT scores echo state drop

ACT test results in Kenosha Unified School District mirror the slight drop in 2016 standardized test results statewide.

Local and state educators, as well as ACT Inc., agree the drop was likely at least in part the result of more students taking the test, as officials pushed for 100 percent participation this year.

Based on decreases seen in 19 other states the first year they adopted 100 percent participation mandates, ACT predicted Wisconsin scores would drop. They did, as the statewide average composite scores dipped for 2016 by 1.6 points, dropping from last year’s 22.1 average score to 20.5 this year.

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Paris wants court to block requested annexation


The town of Paris has filed an injunction request to bar the city of Kenosha from acting on any petition for annexation from residents in Paris or the village of Somers.

The motion filed Thursday in Kenosha County Circuit Court comes just days after Paris property owners petitioned to annex into the city of Kenosha, a move that could upend the controversial Paris-Somers agreement.

Paris Chairman Virgil Gentz declined to comment, saying that he did not yet know the particulars.

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