Rebecca Mariscal joined the Hudson Star Observer as a reporter in 2016. She graduated from the University of St. Thomas with a degree in communication and journalism.
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Hudson and the St. Croix River Valley will have a new team to rally around when the St. Croix River Hounds make their home in the new development planned for the old St. Croix Meadows dog track. In searching for the right name, the ownership team reached out to the Hudson community, asking for ideas and recommendations. The response was overwhelming. Hundreds of emails were sent with thousands of suggestions for team names. "The excitement level from everyone that emailed us over the last couple months has been amazing," a news release stated.
With about 10 times its previous space, the new WinField Innovation Center will continue its agricultural research and development work in a new facility in the River Falls Sterling Ponds Corporate Park. The research done by WinField is designed to provide farmers with better ways to grow food sustainably. "We make our business by helping farmers grow more with less," said Chris Policinski, President and CEO of Land O'Lakes, WinField's parent company. This new facility will help WinField United achieve that.
Natural colors will welcome visitors who traverse along the Wisconsin side of the St. Croix Crossing Loop Trail, thanks to Wisconsin Garden Club Federation President Peggy Grubbs. After learning about the Loop Trail a year ago, Grubbs selected the trail as the garden federation's annual president's project. As a New Richmond native, Grubbs was thrilled to see the focus of the group on this corner of the state. "This is a perfect opportunity to bring those dollars and projects to St. Croix County and Western Wisconsin," Grubbs said.
Spots are filling up for the River Valley Charities "Spread Your Wings" golf fundraiser to be held Monday, Sept. 25 at Troy Burne Golf Club. The shotgun start is at 12:30 p.m., with a dinner for golfers and others who register at 6 p.m. All proceeds from the event goes to backpack programs in the St. Croix River valley area including Hudson, River Falls and New Richmond. Dinner will feature live music and silent and live auctions, with several items donated from the community including items from the Green Bay Packers.
Sean Lybert served almost 12 years in the U.S. Army, with two tours to Iraq, and now he's working to serve veterans like him here in the region. Lybert joined Rep. Sean Duffy's Hudson office as a veterans outreach specialist, a position made possible through the Wounded Warrior fellowship project.
With its fourth year, organizers of the Spread Your Wings golf fundraiser decided to aim higher. Last year the event raised $5,000. This year, their goal is even larger — $30,000. "We're going big or going home," said Nancy Martel, one of the organizers.
Forced into marriages and slavery, taken as prizes of war, many women in the Middle East have experienced brutal treatment at the hands of ISIS. A New Richmond couple is doing what they can to help them heal. Carl and Julie Gaede founded Tutapona, a trauma counseling organization, in 2008 in Uganda after hearing about the atrocities occurring there during the war. "We just really felt like we needed to get involved and do something," Carl said.
RIVER FALLS — With a disinfecting swipe and a quick two seconds to implant, Sam Bengtson had access to his computer, cell phone, credit card and more — all in the palm of his left hand. Then he put his other hand on the table, jokingly ready to do it all again. Bengtson, the lead developer of a microchip project at Three Square Market, had no reservations about joining about 50 other employees in volunteering to have a radio-frequency identification chip implanted. "I can understand how it can be scary," Bengtson said. "But it is very simple and very secure."
Spanning 100 years of history, Hudson resident Kristina Boucher's first book was a puzzle of many pieces. "I just tried to piece the puzzle together," she said. The book "Lost Farms of the St. Croix Valley" is an agriculture study of farmers on both sides of the river that spans from 1860 to 1960. It was born out of curiosity. A fan of photography, Boucher would spend afternoons driving around back country roads, taking photos of the old barns. She found a beauty to them, and wanted to know the story behind them. "I wondered why they were abandoned," she said.
On one of the first hot days of the year, Andrew and Margo Hanson-Pierre sat on the deck overlooking their farm, listening to the birds chirp. "The soundtrack's amazing," Andrew said. The Hannon-Pierres rent the land for their Clover Bee organic produce farm near River Falls, and share the acreage with two other farms. They're not the only ones in the area. The two can rattle off a list of others just up and down the road, not to mention those in the wider region. "In these 10 miles, you can come up with a whole dinner," Margo said. She wishes people would.