The Chippewa Valley Airshow will be without one of its biggest acts for their 2013 installment, scheduled for September 7-8. The US Navy Blue Angels announced Monday night that, due to budget uncertainties and its impact on military participation for upcoming shows they, will not be participating in any shows for the remainder of the 2013 season. Many are disappointed in this decision, among them Matt Hill who is the Scout Executive for the Chippewa Valley Council of the Boy Scouts. “We would like to thank our entire Airshow Committee for all the hard work they had already put in to make this year’s show a success,” replied Hill. The future of the Chippewa Valley airshow currently remains up in the air with the Executive Committee planning to meet and come to a final decision on April 30.
Good news for those Wisconsinites who have an affinity for the arts and bathroom fixtures: the head of The Kohler Co., Herbert Kohler, happens to be a well-noted supporter of the arts. The Kohler Co. is based in eastern Wisconsin and has formed a fantastic reputation for selling kitchen and toilet fixtures throughout the years – to the tune of $3 billion. But also, the lavatory giant’s Kohler Foundation has given countless grants to art programs around that state, and that has landed them on a recent Top 10 Most Generous Families list in Town & Country magazine.
The concept of riding a pedal pub (or party bike, pedal crawler, cycle pub, beer bike, or bierbike, if you prefer) about town has been around for a while now. These pedal powered vehicles can hold up to twelve people, plus one driver doing all of the steering and stopping. Pedal pubs are popular in Germany and other European countries, but remain less popular here in the States due to strict open container laws.
In order to increase the success of the pedal pub business, Republican State Representative Jeff Stone has introduced a bill that would allow Wisconsin municipalities to make the decision as to whether it is legal or not to drink while riding a pedal pub. This bill was introduced after a Milwaukee pedal pub company called Pedal Tavern began having legal issues over patrons drinking while riding. Owner Derek Collins argued that his pedal pub business has “drawn 50,000 riders over the last three years that have spent money on hotels, restaurants and other Milwaukee attractions.” To anyone worried about the driver drinking, the bill has an answer for that as well; the drivers would be required to keep their alcohol blood content at .02 or below at all times.
There have been rumblings for some time now about a return of the Chippewa Valley’s own Shouting Matches. That time has come.
The blues-rock project, which involves Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon, Megafaun's Phil Cook and Laarks/Peter Wolf Crier’s Brian Moen, has existed only in fleeting one-off shows and a mysterious EP that has floated around the area (and the Internet) have a new record coming out on April 16 called GROWNASS MAN.
We don’t know much about the album, except that it was recorded over the last year in Vernon’s Fall Creek studio and that it’s being released on the Middle West label – which we assume is connected to the local management company of the same name that manages all of Vernon’s various projects.
The Shouting Matches have also announced a few shows outside the Chippewa Valley, including one at Coachella Music Festival in California on April 12 and 19.
While the band’s handful of performances over the years have consisted of Vernon and Moen, the latest version of the act is going back to its roots – original (though short-lived) member Phil Cook has rejoined the project. All three have a distinct musical history together from now-defunct local acts DeYarmond Edison and Amateur Love.
The band’s last appearance was a wild, raucous show in 2010 at Volume One’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Kickball Classic. Check out a video from that show below and check back for more information on GROWNASS MAN as it’s available. Once released, The Local Store will have it on both CD and vinyl.
UPDATED (4-8-13): The record is available now to stream on NPR Music's website. GROWNASS MAN isn't quite as raucous as the band's previous efforts, with a little more blues-y, less rock-y vibe, even verging at times on a Nashville country sound. AND! You can get it on iTunes as of April 9.
The Pinehurst Project is currently in their planning stage. As many of you are aware, the proposed changes to Pinehurst Park (on Eau Claire's North side) include rebuilding, reconstructing, and reinventing the former ski hill to create a site where residents of the Chippewa Valley can have fun and stay active in winter via tubing, alpine skiing, snowboarding. The organizers of the project have created a short survey they would like you and your friends and family to fill out. Your feedback will help them work with the City of Eau Claire as they continue planning for this project.
Link to survey: https://cvtc.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_6rLYXYyUD2bqBlb
A UW-Stout graduate and Eau Claire resident was recently crowned Ms. Wheelchair Wisconsin 2013. Amber Gilberg, 31, competed in and won the third-annual pageant on March 16. Gilbert is a freelance graphic designer with a bachelor of fine arts degree from UW-Stout who runs her own business, Beautifully Different. In addition to working, Gilberg is a member of Barrier Busters and Wagner’s Wheels bowling league and also enjoys drawing, dancing, and good Mexican food.
Gilberg’s selection as Ms. Wheelchair Wisconsin 2013 came after a personal interview, a public platform speech delivered by each contestant, and audience questions fielded by specific contestants. Her particular platform concerns establishing more readily available and accessible public transportation for people with disabilities, a quest that resonates deeply with people within her community. As Ms. Wheelchair Wisconsin 2013, Gilberg will take her platform around the state and will continue to be an advocate for people with disabilities.
The next phase for Gilberg is the national Ms. Wheelchair America pageant, scheduled to be held in Houston in 2014. She’s still trying to raise enough money to get there; for inquiries about how you can help or to hear her speak, contact Gilberg at email@example.com.
The results from Tuesday’s spring election are in, and Eau Claire has some brand-spanking-new elected officials, including four fresh-faced City Councilpersons and three novice school board members.
Out of a field of 10 candidates, five were victorious in the race for at-large Eau Claire City Council seats: Michael Moua Xiong, Catherine Emmanuelle, David Strobel, Eric Larsen, and Monica Lewis. Only one – Emmanuelle – is an incumbent, and even she has only served on the council since September, when she was appointed to an open seat. Another incumbent, Mark Olson, placed sixth by a few dozen votes and lost his post. The other also-rans were Steven Judd, Michael Turner, Eric Getten, and Luke Hoppe. (Three incumbents – Jackie Pavelski, Larry Balow, and Thomas Vue – didn’t run for re-election.)
Meanwhile, three newcomers came out on top in the Eau Claire school board race: Richard Spindler, Chue Xiong, and Christine Hambuch-Boyle. Former school board member Mike Bollinger fell about 250 votes short of winning a return. In addition, incumbent Bob Janke came in fifth and lost his seat. (Two other incumbents – Ken Faanes and Brent Wogahn – didn’t run again.)
For a full rundown on Eau Claire County election results, check out the Eau Claire County website (click on the link that says “April 2, 2013 Spring Election”) or tallies from the Leader-Telegram, WEAU-TV, and WQOW-TV.