Local Features

In addition to the local news, WXPR Public Radio also likes to find stories that are outside the general news cycle... Listen below to stories about history, people, culture, art, and the environment in the Northwoods that go a little deeper than a traditional news story allows us to do. Here are all of the series we include in this podcast: Curious North, We Live Up Here, A Northwoods Moment in History, Field Notes, and Wildlife Matters.

These features are also available as a podcast by searching "WXPR Local Features" wherever you get your podcasts.

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR

A unique art exhibit has been the focus at ArtStart Rhinelander since May. Layers by artist Phillip Faulkner is on display through Saturday, August 10th.

The exhibit combines appropriated imagery with original work and the artist behind it says he's open to any and all interpretations you might have of it.

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




Federal Bureau of Investigation / Wikimedia Commons

You've heard of John Dillinger and the famous shootout at Bohemia Lodge in Manitowish Waters, but have you ever heard of Evelyn Frechette?

That's the topic of this week's A Northwoods Moment in History with Gary Entz.

Evelyn Frechette grew up in the Northwoods of Wisconsin and gained a measure of fame in the 1930s.  Her celebrity did not come from being a film actress or anything of that sort.  Rather, Evelyn Frechette became famous and drew crowds for national speaking tours because of her association with gangsters.

Most snowshoes in the United States are probably in storage right now, gathering dust and waiting for temperatures to drop. In the town of Lake Tomahawk in the Northwoods of Wisconsin though, they're getting a lot of use this summer.

Snowshoe baseball is exactly what it sounds like. It's a game of baseball played on snowshoes, though it more closely resembles a bizarre game of softball.

Grantus4504/Wikimedia Commons

Springtime woodpecker worries are the focus of this week’s Wildlife Matters, as the Masked Biologist tackles another Curious North question from one of our listeners.

I get questions or concerns pretty frequently about woodpeckers hurting or killing trees, so when I saw this Curious North question, I thought I would try to address Jane Trotter’s concerns. She asks “A Hairy Woodpecker is busily working on a Hemlock tree right outside our bedroom window. The Hemlock appears to be alive and well....so far. Will Hairy’s morning percussions hurt the tree?”

Michigan Technological University

Climate Change can be overwhelming to think about.

Author Nancy Langston has been researching Lake Superior for over a decade now though and she says local stories of people taking action give her hope.

Larry Lapachin continues our We Live Up Here series with the story.


Gary Entz / WXPR Public Radio

This week's A Northwoods Moment in History comes from a Curious North question.

Bob Nussbaum from Rhinelander asks: Why, and when, did the famous smokestacks of Rhinelander Paper, get shortened, so that the word "Glassine," the description of the butcher paper that changed the world, lost its "G"?

To answer Bob's question, here's Gary Entz.

Pens and Photo by Scott Bowe

In this month's installment of Field Notes Scott Bowe of Kemp Station discusses bird’s-eye wood, some of the most beautiful material a woodworker can use.

When I say “figure in wood” you may not be familiar with the phrase.  But if I say bird’s-eye maple, an image of beautiful swirls pops into your mind.  There are many other types of wood figure such as curly, tiger stripe, fiddleback, and quilted, but I would like to focus on bird’s-eye today.

Photo by Warren Lynn. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

In this week’s Wildlife Matters, the Masked Biologist tackles one of WXPR’s Curious North questions.

Emily DiGiorgio from Ironwood, MI, asks: How can we help accommodate wildlife in our backyards without disturbing our home aesthetic?

To answer Emily's question, here's the Masked Biologist.

Jim Skibo / WXPR Public Radio

We continue our We Live Up Here series this week with a story of a family-owned fishing lure manufacturer in Antigo that uses squirrel tail hair on their famous Mepps spinners.

Jim Skibo has the story.

Wikimedia Commons

Donald Karr of Rhinelander was a true war hero, but his heroism during World War II didn’t prevent an awkward homecoming when he returned to Wisconsin in 1944.

Gary Entz has this story for this week's A Northwoods Moment in History.


Local public radio gives your friends and neighbors an opportunity to contribute to something truly special, and you—the listener—are an important component that makes radio work.

This week the Masked Biologist takes a step away from wildlife to talk about the magic of radio and the spoken word on Wildlife Matters.

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR Public Radio

AUGUST 19, 2019 IMPORTANT UPDATE: The Oneida County Health Department does not recommend drinking from the Crescent Spring because the test for PFAS came back as positive. More information can be found in a report here from WXPR's Mackenzie Martin.

8tracks.com/markymark25 / Wikimedia Commons

During the summer of 1958, Rock and Roll pioneers Buddy Holly and the Crickets toured the Upper Midwest as part of the Summer Dance Party tour. The tour passed through Wausau and ended in Rhinelander.

Gary Entz has the story for this week's A Northwoods Moment in History.

Wisconsin Historical Society, Image ID: 42850, wisconsinhistory.org

This week's A Northwoods Moment in History comes from a question to our Curious North series.

Patty Fitzpatrick from Rhinelander recently asked: Is it true that there was a POW camp in Rhinelander during World War II?"

To answer Patty's question, here's Gary Entz for this week's A Northwoods Moment in History.