Mackenzie Martin

Morning Edition Host/Features Editor

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Mackenzie came to WXPR in 2016 as the Operations Director and Morning Edition Host, but moved into a full-time reporting, editing, and hosting role in April 2018. Mackenzie is passionate about reporting and editing stories that cover interesting people and places in the Northwoods as part of her We Live Up Here series. If you have any ideas for a story you think she should cover, shoot her an email:

Mackenzie graduated from Macalester College in St. Paul, MN, in 2016 with a major in media & cultural studies. She's originally from Wausau, WI. Mackenzie's work has also been heard on Minnesota Public Radio and Wisconsin Public Radio.

Holiday Acres Resort

Summer tourism in the Northwoods is ending and some of our seasonal residents are leaving the Northwoods for their permanent homes elsewhere.

At Holiday Acres Resort in Rhinelander, a dedicated group of family and friends have been coming up the last week of July every year for almost 50 years. Holiday Acres recently asked some of them to interview each other about what that tradition and the Northwoods as a whole means to them.

  • The WI Dept. of Corrections failed to notify proper authorities about a problem at Lincoln Hills for two and half years,
  • Today is Suicide Prevention Day and there is help for those that need it,
  • The Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce has a positive tourism report,
  • and scammers are back to prey on older citizens.

Mackenzie Martin

Northern Wisconsin is full of many different types of wild mushrooms in September. Some edible, some poisonous, and everything in between. How to tell the differences between them is in the details.

Mackenzie Martin went into the woods to learn more.

We’re looking for mushrooms in the forest at Kemp Natural Resources Station in Woodruff and someone just found chaga. It’s a type of mushroom that you can make tea out of. It typically grows on birch trees.

Fall is just around the corner and with it comes a variety of pumpkin themed items.

For 20 years, Three Lakes Winery has been making a wine made from pumpkin pie pumpkins and a few months ago, the rest of the country noticed.

Three Lakes Winery co-owner Mark McCain says the story of their pumpkin wine went viral over the summer.

  • Thousands of UW students moving into dorms despite high water,
  • the Star Journal is reporting that Oneida County Medical Examiner Larry Mathein was placed on paid administrative leave last Thursday,
  • Wisconsin housing inventory grows for 2nd straight month,
  • the Wisconsin congressional delegation is reacting to John McCain's death,
  • and Foxconn Technology is looking for 13,000 workers. 

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR

It’s back to school time for many children and teachers.

It’s a good time to make sure you have all of your needed school supplies, and also a good time to get rid of or donate ones you no longer need.

In Rhinelander, you can donate your old crayons or purchase crayons that have been remolded into new ones at the Hodag Farmer’s Market every Saturday.

Cassie Shefchik gets donations of crayons every year, then melts them into new shapes and colors and sells them.

ArtStart Rhinelander

Registration is still open for ArtStart Rhinelander’s 2018 School of the Arts Legacy Program to be held at Treehaven near Tomahawk.

School of the Arts will be held from September 27 – 30 and feature classes that focus on art, nature, writing, film, pottery, poetry, painting, playwriting, dance, and more.

Local author Victoria Houston will be giving the keynote address at this year’s School of the Arts.

  • Early Polling Shows Tight Races For Governor, U.S. Senate
  • Madison Drivers Warned About Additional Street Flooding
  • DNR to Investigate Ruffed Grouse Population for West Nile Virus
  • Downtown Rhinelander Parking Concerns Brought to City Committee

Mdf / Wikimedia Commons

The number of ruffed grouse in Wisconsin has declined and some are concerned West Nile virus is to blame. In response to these concerns, the Wisconsin DNR is kicking off a monitoring program this fall.

DNR upland wildlife ecologist Mark Witecha says they’re collaborating with natural resource agencies in Minnesota and Michigan, the Ruffed Grouse Society and the Wisconsin Conservation Congress, but they also need help from hunters and wildlife enthusiasts.

  • A crow in Vilas County has tested positive for West Nile virus,
  • The Wisconsin DNR and Conservation Congress hosted a public meeting to discuss CWD in Lincoln County,
  • A state of emergency has been declared in Dane County,
  • Those interested in foraging for wild mushrooms can attend a unique festival in Woodruff this weekend,
  • Notice your car isn’t covered with bugs? That might be tied to sharp drops in flying insect-eating bird populations,
  • Speaker Vos is "shocked" by Governor Walker's refusal to visit state prisons.

Crow in Vilas Co. Dies from West Nile Virus

Aug 22, 2018 Schwarzenarzisse

The Vilas County Public Health Department is reporting that a dead crow found in Vilas County on August 11 has tested positive for West Nile virus.

This is the first bird that has tested positive for West Nile virus in Vilas County this year.

It's not the first bird found with West Nile virus in the area, though. A bird found in Oneida County on July 29 also tested positive for West Nile virus.

Wisconsin Historical Society, Image ID: 31783,

This week on A Northwoods Moment in History, local historian Gary Entz tells us about a football game between Rhinelander and Green Bay in 1896.

Those interested in mushrooms and foraging can attend a unique festival starting Friday, August 24th.

The “All Things Fungi” Festival will be held at Kemp Natural Resources Station in Woodruff. The first time event is free and open to the public and will include lectures, discussions, and demonstrations. Lectures begin Friday night and continue Saturday afternoon.

Karla Ortman is the Office Manager at Kemp Natural Resources Station.

  • A federal loan will improve power transmission in Iron and Vilas counties,
  • Wisconsin River Cruises is leaving Rhinelander at the end of September,
  • and work is progressing toward a 2019 opening of a new national veterans cemetery in Cassian.

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR

Rhinelander will be saying goodbye to a beloved boat at the end of September.

The Wilderness Queen river boat with Wisconsin River Cruises has been sold. Owner Patty Zastrow says that moving to Michigan to join her husband has pushed her to sell the boat. Rather than moving somewhere local, it’s moving to southern Wisconsin.

Zastrow says they’ve had a good run.