Wikimedia Commons Royal Broil

The Northwoods River News is reporting an Oneida County Sheriff's Department detective who is also a Rhinelander city council member has been placed on paid administrative leave by the Sheriff's Department.

An open records request by the Northwoods River News discovered Ryan Rossling is on leave pending an investigation into an alleged "walking quorum" of council members and Mayor Chris Frederickson.

Wisconsin Historical Society, Image ID: 53541, wisconsinhistory.org

For many children, writing a letter to Santa has always been an important part of this time of the year.

Back in 1929 though, the letters reflected hardships in Rhinelander families. Gary Entz remembers those families this week as part of our continued series A Northwoods Moment in History.

Thanks to Liana Teter, Brynn Teter, and Cooper Dick for reading the letters from 1929.


A group promoting Rhinelander has asked for the public to pick the "Best of Rhinelander" in a number of topics.

Foward Rhinelander has put together a best of competition from now until voting ends on January 18.

There are 33 different categories to select, ranging from the 'best thing about Rhinelander' to the best fish fry to the best radio station. All the voting is done online at forwardrhinelander.com

Left: WXPR Public Radio Right: Greenmars/Wikimedia Commons

In July of 1975, Bruce Kotila was on the S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald and one of the crew members gave him a life jacket. Four months later on November 10th, the Fitzgerald sank in a Lake Superior storm. No one survived. Kotila, who lives in Rhinelander, says the gift is immensely meaningful to him 43 years later.

Mackenzie Martin talked to Kotila and the author of The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald about what still resonates with us about the Edmund Fitzgerald today.

Wikimedia Commons Royalbroil

The City of Rhinelander is hoping to get the funds to upgrade Stevens Street, or business Highway 17, next year from north of the downtown to the beltway. The city has applied for a Safe Drinking Water Loan from the state.

Environmental Review Specialist for the DNR, Kevin Olson, is reviewing the process. The city has asked for the money to upgrade watermains on Wabash St. between Bruner and Arbutus streets, along with replacement of mains between Frederick St. and Highway 17 on the city's north side.


The name Frederick S. Robbins might ring a bell for those in the Rhinelander area.

As part of our continued series A Northwoods Moment in History, local historian Gary Entz has the story of his life.

Frederick S. Robbins is a fairly well-known name in Rhinelander history.  He came to the city in 1886, built a sawmill in 1887, and ran the Robbins Lumber Company for many years.  Robbins lived an active and adventurous life, but what is less well-known is how tough and vigorous he really was.

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR Public Radio

A unique art exhibit has been the focus at ArtStart Rhinelander for the last few weeks.


Mackenzie Martin has this report from the opening reception in June.




Over the past two years, Karen Bondarchuk has found more dead birds than at any other time in her life. The exhibit at ArtStart Rhinelander through August 18 is called - And by the Wind Grieved - and it’s all recreations of dead birds, both sculptures and paintings.

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR Public Radio

The number of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder has been going up over the years.

Locally, there is a center in the Northwoods that aims to help children on the autism spectrum by using something called behavioral treatment… and they’ve recently expanded to Rhinelander.

Mackenzie Martin has the story.

The space located in Rhinelander’s Riverview Hall looks like a typical preschool with toys and books scattered about. There are some things that help you realize it’s a space for kids on the autism spectrum, though.

Wisconsin Historical Society, Image ID: 71650, wisconsinhistory.org

On days when the weather in northern Wisconsin is particularly bleak, we've all felt sympathy for our mail carriers. This week on A Northwoods Moment in History though, local historian Gary Entz tells us that it used to be a lot worse.


In the days leading up to the 4th of July, those around the country will be preparing by purchasing fireworks for home use. Typically this is a beloved part of the holiday, but a local wildlife rehabilitation center is warning the public to adjust the way they celebrate, or skip it altogether.

Director of Rehabilitation at Wild Instincts in Rhinelander Mark Naniot says it's not just pets that freak out during annual firework celebrations, fireworks have dangerous effects on local wildlife.

Wisconsin Historical Society, Image ID: 10715, wisconsinhistory.org

This week on A Northwoods Moment in History, local historian Gary Entz takes us back to 1931, when an air show was held in Rhinelander.

Air shows where aircraft are exhibited, air races are run, and acrobatic demonstrations take place are still staged in many venues around the world, but they used to be a common occurrence in small towns across America.  In the early days of flying, fixed base operators and aviators would use air shows to bring people out to the local airfield and drum up business for the fledgling aviation industry.

Harry Shipler / Wikimedia Commons

Every Friday, we turn back the clock on Morning Edition with local historian Gary Entz to find out what life in the Northwoods used to be like. This is part of a new initiative by WXPR to tell the history and culture of northern Wisconsin.

ArtStart Rhinelander

There’s a new type of open mic coming to the Northwoods community Wednesday, May 30th. 

The evening of performances at ArtStart in Rhinelander is called In Progress to encourage people to share things that aren’t quite done yet. The whole idea is to build a community that can support each other’s artistic endeavors as well as give constructive feedback. That being said, presenting finished or published works is also encouraged.

Castle, W.I. (William Ivor) / Wikimedia Commons

Every Friday, we turn back the clock on Morning Edition with local historian Gary Entz to find out what life in the Northwoods used to be like. This is part of a new initiative by WXPR to tell the history and culture of northern Wisconsin.

Issues of immigration, military conflicts overseas, and how we honor veterans are current topics of political debate, but this is nothing new.  Consider the case of Rhinelander resident Elwood Smith.


Celebrating Rhinelander young adults making a difference, Forward Rhinelander has selected its first-ever honorees for Top 10 Under 40 recognition.

Forward Rhinelander received more than 50 nominations highlighting the many people serving their community.

A spokesperson for the group says the move is to change perception. Forward Rhinelander's Melinda Childs says in an area with a large senior demographic, they want to show there are younger people making a difference...