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GT softball team earns state berth by blanking Homestead, 3-0

June 07, 2012 9:15 p.m. | Germantown senior catcher Kelsey Smith did not want to endure what she and the rest of the team went through last season, when archrival Homestead stunned the then North Shore champion Warhawks in the WIAA sectional final.

And Smith and the Warhawks didn't let it happen again, as after another North Shore championship and another regular season sweep of the Highlanders, they took care of business and earned their first WIAA state tournament berth in 15 years with a 3-0 sectional final victory over Homestead at Kennedy Middle School Thursday night.

"This is the best moment," said Smith, whose sacrifice fly in the sixth inning added a critical insurance run. "It's the best way to play last home game on this field."

"This game was everything, because I remember all the crying that went on after the (sectional) game last year. All those tears we cried went into this year's effort. We learned important lessons."

With the win, the Warhawks (21-4 overall) earned a WIAA state quarterfinal slot at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, June 14 at Goodman Diamond in Madison, against defending state champion Stevens Point (22-5), which was a 3-0 winner over Beaver Dam today. It is Germantown's third overall trip to state.

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Maple Dale-Indian Hill readies budget for next month's annual meeting

June 06, 2012 9:32 p.m. | Maple Dale-Indian Hill school officials met Wednesday and discussed the district's proposed 2012-13 budget of about $9.3 million.

The district will be entering the fourth year of a 10-year referendum cycle that infuses $800,000 of additional taxpayer money - beyond the state-mandated levy limits - into Maple Dale-Indian Hill's general operating budget.

While the district has been able to store away some of that money in the fund balance reserves, the amount is less than the annual $400,000 that had been earmarked. Business Administrator Gary Swalve has attributed the decline in fund balance contributions to a drop in recent years in state aid.

Swalve will present a draft version of the 2012-13 budget at Maple Dale-Indian Hill's annual meeting, set for 7 p.m. July 11 at Maple Dale School, 8377 N. Port Washington Road.

Maple Dale-Indian Hill encompasses portions of Bayside, Fox Point, Glendale and River Hills. Residents within the district's boundaries will have an opportunity to vote on a proposed property tax levy at the meeting.

Man found in Whitefish Bay fire identified

June 06, 2012 6:04 p.m. | A man who died in a fire Wednesday in his Whitefish Bay condominium was identified by the Milwaukee County medical examiner's office as 43-year-old- Timothy A. Alloway.

Alloway was pronounced dead at the scene of the fire, which occurred in a condo building at 303 E. Henry Clay St., according to North Shore Fire Chief Robert Whitaker.

An autopsy has been scheduled, a medical examiner's official said.

Whitaker said the fire was reported at 7:11 a.m., and occurred on the third floor of the building.

The victim was found in his condo, Whitaker said.

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Homestead's Niebrugge has four shot lead in state golf

June 05, 2012 5:34 p.m. | Homestead senior Jordan Niebrugge has apparently made up for years of disappointment by going into the clubhouse at the WIAA state golf championship at University Ridge in Verona on Tuesday with a record-tieing 36-hole score of 136.

According to the WIAA website, Niebrugge shot a six-under par 66 today and his overall score is currently four shots clear of Stoughton's Henry Klongland (140) and has tied the individual state meet record held by former Highlander state champion Andy Hansen, who originally set the mark back in 2006.

Niebrugge is looking to become the first Homestead individual champion since Hansen.

As of 5:50 p.m., there were still many golfers left to finish.

Looking for your local polling place?

June 05, 2012 9:10 a.m. | If you would like to cast a vote today in Wisconsin's election and are not sure where your local polling place is, check out the Wisconsin Voter Public Access Page.

There you will find your local polling place, a sample ballot, list of elected officials and more.

Polls are open today until 8 p.m.

Wisconsin Voter Public Access Page

Miss Cupcake targets July opening in Shorewood

June 05, 2012 8:00 a.m. | Ashley Weber's nearly five-year-old baking business will open its first brick-and-mortar storefront -- her longtime dream -- around July 1 in Shorewood. 

Miss Cupcake Boutique Bakery is taking shape at 3801 N. Oakland Ave., the former Last Drop coffee and sandwich shop. Besides its namesake cupcakes, the bakery will have pies, brownies, cookies, confections and bulk old-fashioned candies, among other items, Weber said. And customers will find vegan, gluten-free and sugar-free options. 

Pies will be available in standard 9-inch and individual sizes, and branch out into rustic galettes and quiches as well.

Weber's business started taking off after she baked for the influx of visitors for Harley-Davidson's 105th anniversary bash in 2008, working out of the kitchen of Mimma's on Brady St. Now that Miss Cupcake will have its own storefront, the shop's decor will be inspired by vintage Hollywood glamour, Weber said. 

The bakery will have a few seats inside and outside, and have coffee and other beverages, such as hot vanilla milk, or apple cider in the fall.

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Whitefish Bay officials looking at 10-year capital improvement plan

June 04, 2012 11:14 p.m. | Whitefish Bay officials are reviewing a 10-year capital improvement plan - an important lynchpin toward the road to addressing upgrades in the sanitary sewer system that resulted in flooding nearly two years ago during torrential rainfall.

Tentatively, the village is planning to borrow about $100 million in the years ahead to fund improvements to the sanitary sewer system, as well as water utility infrastructure and streets.

The village has contracted with financial advisory firm Ehlers and Associates to hash over financial options for the impending work. Company representative Mike Harrigan reviewed some of the details at a Village Board meeting Monday night.

One of the most scrutinized aspects of this week's discussion focused on funding options. Village officials are grappling with implementing a storm water utility fee - a figure that would be determined based on a variety of factors, including the square footage of a property.

Over time, Herrigan said property tax payers could incur an increase of $1.42 per $1,000 of assessed value to fund the improvements without a storm water utility. With a current rate of 81 cents per $1,000 of assessed value, this would increase the amount to $2.23 per $1,000 of assessed value. The figure only represents the municipal portion of a village taxpayer's bill and only takes into account the money earmarked for funding improvements.

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GT beats Nicolet to advance to sectional softball final versus Homestead

June 04, 2012 9:56 p.m. | Once more, with feeling.

That'll be the case Thursday night at 7 p.m. back at the Kennedy Middle School Fields, when the North Shore Conference Germantown softball team will host archrival Homestead in a WIAA sectional final, with a berth in the state tournament on the line.

The Warhawks advanced to the sectional final behind Amanda Witzlib's 13 strikeouts and Addy Green's two-run home run with a 3-1 sectional semifinal decision Monday night over another North shore rival Nicolet.

The sectional final will be a replay of last season. The scenario will be exactly the same too, as last year, the Warhawks beat the Highlanders twice during the regular season only to have Homestead edge them in the sectional final.

And once again, Germantown has edged Homestead in two thrillers this season en route to an unbeaten North Shore Conference campaign. Germantown will enter with a record of 21-4, while the Highlanders will come in at 19-5. The Highlanders advanced with a 6-3 victory Monday night against Brookfield Central.

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River Hills chooses town of Saukville clerk as new village manager

June 04, 2012 9:47 p.m. | Christopher Lear, the town clerk at the town of Saukville, is the new village manager/clerk treasurer for River Hills.

Although most of Lear's background has been in the city/village management area, he took on elections and other clerk duties when hired by the town of Saukville in 2006. Before that he was the village manager/clerk in Germantown.

Lear also did accounting in Saukville. His resume includes the village administrator/clerk position at the village of Saukville and several positions in Galesburg and the Zion Park District in Illinois.

River Hills sought a replacement for its former manager Tom Tollaksen, who resigned in late January, and for its clerk who left for another position in December.

Village President Robert Brunner said Lear will earn $80,000 a year and start on June 25.

Polls change for some Brown Deer voters for Tuesday's recall election

June 04, 2012 8:56 p.m. | Registered voters living on the south side of West Pierner Place and the west side of North 67th Street to roughly West Cloverleaf Drive will vote at the Brown Deer Library, not Trinity Community Church on Tuesday.

Brown Deer Village Manager Russell Van Gompel told the Village Board on Monday night that the geographical information system used to map out the new wards after the redistricting due to the 2010 census mapped from the centerline of those streets. The result was the two areas were assigned to the library for voting rather than the church.

Van Gompel said village staff noticed the error before the last two elections and went into the state registration system and manually corrected the error. However, it was not caught until this afternoon. The poll books were already printed meaning those voters must go to the library to vote in this election.

Van Gompel did not know the exact number of voters who could be impacted by the switch but there are 20 to 25 homes along the streets.

The library is located at 5600 W. Bradley Road.

Lexmond becomes new Shorewood schools superintendent

June 04, 2012 12:14 p.m. | Martin Lexmond has been chosen by the School Board to become Shorewood School District's new superintendent.

The board sat in closed session multiple times over the last two weeks, deliberating between Lexmond - currently superintendent of the Kohler Public School District - and current Lake Bluff Elementary Principal Kirk Juffer, weighing the candidates against the criteria gleaned from multiple community input sessions.

"We looked at that information and how well Martin fit with that," School Board member Colin Plese said. "We considered community feedback, and our own feedback."

Lexmond will succeed current Superintendent Blane McCann, who has been with the district for nine years and will soon become superintendent of Westside Community School District in Omaha, Neb.

"It is truly humbling to have an opportunity to serve the Shorewood community. Shorewood is known and respected for its commitment to student excellence," Lexmond said in a district news release. "I am excited to lead a team with such an enthusiasm for the education of its children."

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