Eliason Realty Updates
So you bit the bullet and started your own company selling first rate widgets – out of your basement. Well, that worked for the first year, almost. But now there are boxes of widgets all over the house and orders are coming fast and furious. It’s time to make that first move. But the budget is still tight – what is your next step?
Perhaps you might want to consider contacting the Vilas County Economic Development Corporation (VCEDC) and ask about the incubators located throughout the county. An incubator? For your business needs, an incubator in Vilas County,”provide (s) a low cost solution for working space for start-up and expanding businesses.”
Exactly what is VCDEC? This is a non-profit 501 (c) 3 quasi-governmental organization that works with public, private and non-governmental units to work toward economic growth and quality job opportunities growth in Vilas County.
Their mission statement clearly defines what their goals are: “Provide innovative leadership and regional infrastructure to: improve the economic well being of businesses, communities and residents; promote creation and retention of viable businesses and quality jobs; and provide increased opportunities for education strengthening workforce development.”
This is no small undertaking and providing office, work and warehouse space via an incubator environment is only part of the services offered by VCEDC. Experienced business leaders offer new businesses a resource for expert advice in the management, staffing and growth of a new or expanding business. There are also venture capital resources available to these businesses.
There are three locations for such incubators. The first location opened in Eagle River, at 413 Pines St., and among the current tenants are: StitchIt Embroidery, A LA Carte Care, Butkowski Sales, Property Management North, CJM Solutions, LLC, Second Generation Enterprises, Inc DBA- DKA Financial and Computer Success.
The next incubator is located in Manitowish Waters, at 399 Highway 51.
Brad Zdroik, Deep Freeze Fishing, Inc.
We are the lucky ones, living here in northern Wisconsin. We are able to enjoy the beauty and the natural attributes of living in a pristine and safe environment. However, one of the drawbacks to coming to this area is the difficulty of finding a job to sustain a comfortable lifestyle.
A relatively new investment group is trying to assist the development of new companies that show a potential for creating significant job opportunities. The Northwoods Angel network was introduced in December, 2010, a part of the Wisconsin Angels Network (WAN), and there are now 23 groups affiliated with this state-wide organization.
The Northwoods Angel network is comprised of high-net worth individuals who not only provide venture capital to assist companies in their early stage of development, but also offer their high-level business expertise to these start-up companies. This group also works closely with the Vilas County Economic Development Corporation (VCEDC) to assist Vilas County-based start-up businesses and where Northwoods Angels found its new leadership.
Entrepreneurs are encouraged to seek more information about the advantages of growing their businesses by applying for investment capital through the WAN. Dick Leinenkugel, former state commerce secretary, president of Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Co., and one of the creators of the Northwoods Angels network, gave an interview to the Star Journal this past December. In this interview he advised applying entrepreneurs.“The main thing is to have a solid business plan with pro forma projections with a budget, a profit/loss plan for maybe three to five years and show that the company is fulfilling a solid need, whether it’s a business service or something they’ll produce themselves. It’s got to be based in reality.”
There is no charge to entrepreneurs and they are encouraged to apply for investment capital on the WAN website.
Set your sites on trying something new this weekend! Head over to the Conover Community Park this Saturday, February 15, and take part in a great time at the “Northwoods Blizzard Blast”. The town really goes out of its way to make sure there is something for everyone to like.
Kicking off all the fun on Friday, there is a three-day snow sculpting competition and entry fees are $25 per team.
On Saturday, from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM, there are scenic sleigh rides, an artisan bazaar, ice golf, ice bowling, a youth archery demo and fun for kids.
Then at 11:00 AM there is an X-Country Fun Run (register by 10:30 AM). Beginning at 11:00 AM until 2:00 PM, a Northwoods original – Snowshoe Baseball! From 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM there is a Kids Dogsled Dash. At 2:00 PM join in on the Snow Shovel Races, 3:00 PM the Recliner Races and at 4:00 PM, it’s the Snowshoe Shuffle.
Also at 4:00 PM it’s the Snowflake Scrabble Drawing. It all comes to a head at the Trophy Presentation at 5:00 PM. Finally, around 6 PM, the day ends with a fireworks display. Some events do have a nominal charge. What a great way to get outdoors and shake off those cabin-bound blues! For more details, visit www.blizzard-blast.com.
Land O’ Lakes
Thanks to all the hard work of area groomer drivers, snowmobile trails are in good shape despite the snow drought of the last few weeks. The few inches in the last 24 hours has helped a little. So there is no excuse to head for the border and join in the Frosty Snowmobile Club’s “Radar Run,” based at Bent’s Camp on Mamie Lake on the Cisco Chain this Saturday, February 14.
There will be a Bikini Run (that’s three weeks in a row – Northwoods women are gutsy!), food, an Ice Bar, raffles and lots of fun!
Volunteers setting up the Cruiser Tent for this weekend - picture from Cross Country Cruisers Facebook page
Another weekend of speed and spectacular beauties is on the horizon as the Cross Country Cruisers present Cruiserfest in its 16th year on the ice in Minocqua. This year the site will be at Torpy Park to ensure there is plenty of safe ice for everyone who wants to participate. February 6 and 7 are the dates for the action-packed agenda.
Beginning Friday night, on the ice in front of Torpy Park, there will be a huge heated tent, a fantastic bonfire, food, refreshments and music.
A start time of 6:00 PM is slated for the kickoff Snowmobile Parade from Stacks Bay to the Aqua Bowl. Then at 7:00 PM the sky explodes with an awesome fireworks display.
Saturday, the Cruiser Tent opens at 8:00 AM and will be serving breakfast until 11:00 AM. Beginning at 11:00 AM burgers, brats and chili along with beverages are available until 3:00 PM.
Racing activities start at 9:30 AM with registration for the radar runs and races take off at 10:30 AM. The timing of all the runs will be recorded by the St. Germain Racing Club for the 30 classes held that day. The fastest time will be awarded the $750 purse.
Then at 2:00 PM, Slo’s Pub presents the 5th Annual Bikini Races. Funds raised by these brave snowmobile racers will go to the Pink Ribbon Riders and the trail fund. Divas SnowGear is the presenting sponsor.
There is more! In addition to thrilling race heats, there is also an all-day-long swap meet, vendors and a Vintage Snowmobile Display for participants to enjoy. Ever wonder what it’s like to ride in the cab of a groomer? This is the perfect opportunity to see what the trail looks like from a new perspective.
The highlight of the snowmobile season in St. Germain is fast approaching as the 2015 St. Germain Radar Run hits the starting lines beginning this Friday, Jan. 30 and Saturday, Jan. 31. This thrilling event is presented by Discover Wisconsin and the St. Germain Radar Racers, featuring Diva SnowGear, First Place Parts and Fly Racing. This is the 13th year for this charity fundraising event.
Held on West Bay of Little St. Germain Lake, this event has come a long way from the beginning when the races consisted of snowmobiles and a radar gun. Now this two-day event sports a seven-class line up beginning with stock sleds all the way up to the Super Mod class which is a specialty class allowing for unlimited cc’s, full body, custom body and propelled by gas, nitro or turbo.
Friday afternoon, the Fly Racing Speed Runs will be held on the Thunderbird 1000’ of shaved ice or on the Twilight 600’ of groomed snow. Races start at 1:00 PM until 4:00 PM.
That evening, is Timber’s Bar and Grill, “Friday Night Under the Lights”. Weber’s Wildlife Gas Pump will sponsor a Shoot Out snowmobile ride leaving at 3:00 PM. All snowmobilers are invited to take part in Weber’s Wildlife Shoot Out drag races scheduled from 5:00-8:00 PM for $5 a run.
There will also be Radar Fun Runs open to the snowmobiling public at 5:00-8:00 PM sponsored by Straight Line Racing. A special feature at 6:00 PM will pit the 10 fastest snowmobiles in the Midwest against each other at the Snow Outlaw Drag Races.
Music will fill the air as snowmobilers shop the snowmobile vendors and warm themselves in the heated tent with food served by the Bo-Boen Snowmobile Club from 12:00 – 8:00 PM.
On Saturday, Straight Line Racing Trophy Runs will be held from 10:00 AM until 4:00 PM as well as Fun Runs. There will also be the 2015 Yamaha Demo Rides offered.
Picture from Eagle River World Championship Derby Facebook page
For 52 years Eagle River has lived up to its title as “Snowmobile Capital of the World™”, when it launched the 2015 AMSOIL Eagle River World Championship Derby Races. This past weekend the snowmobiles that lit the racing fever were celebrated as the 2015 Woody's Traction Eagle River World Championship Derby Vintage Races were held Jan. 9-11. The winner of the 2015 World Vintage Champion is Matt Goede, from New Germany, Minn. racing on a Polaris Starfire.
Starting Thursday, Jan. 15, snocross and oval racing practice begins at 8:00 AM and racing begins at 2:00 PM with the first snocross and oval racing rounds at the Derby track.
An exciting Friday begins at 9:00 AM with round two of the races. Several of the classes will have finals later at Friday Night Thunder.
Saturday, the Snocross finals will be held and at 2 PM during the AMSOIL World Championship Top 10 qualifying race. After these races, the track will have a “knock down” in preparation for Sunday’s oval finals and the Championship race that begins at 3:00 PM.
Of course, there is much more at the Derby track for spectators to enjoy. There is the fantastic indoor Derby Expo Hall where vendors show off the latest and greatest in snowmobiles, accessories and gear. It is also home to the newest addition to the Derby Expo Hall, the Derby Loft. This is an inside dining and drinking arena providing Derby attendees with a much needed accommodation that opened in time for the 50th Championship Derby.
There are also the very popular Hotseats that are enclosed, heated seating, elevated for a premier view of the racing action. They also feature in-box refreshments for the spectators.
If you are unable to attend in person, there is also a live feed of the races that is available online and presented by Woody’s.
When it comes to winter, the word is “OUTDOORS”! January 3 was the epitome for the hardiness that exemplifies typical Northwoods residents and visitors. There were two charitable fundraising events that took on the battle against cancer head on.
A new charity was the beneficiary of the plunge at Fibbers Restaurant and Resort on St. Germain Lake. The first-ever, “Tundra Plunge”, took place as 66 brave souls splashed into Big St. Germain Lake to raise money for the Vince Lombardi Cancer Foundation.
The Foundation has been raising money for research as well as providing care at the Vince Lombardi Cancer Clinics. Since its inception 45 years ago, $16 million dollars has been raised to fight this demon disease.
In true Fibbers fashion, Rob and Kay Manthei sponsored the event that was deemed at “huge success” by the Lombardi foundation.
That same day, Bonnie’s Lakeside in Three Lakes, was the new location for the, "15th Annual Polar Plunge," that had a record breaking year. A stunning $50,500 in pledges was raised for the “Angel on My Shoulder” fund.
Angel on My Shoulder provides emotional and financial support locally for families affected by cancer. Each summer, children who have had to face the wreckage of cancer in their lives find support, understanding and fun with other children at camps held to help them deal with this disease.
Discover Wisconsin and Bonnie’s Lakeside joined WRJO in sponsoring, promoting and participating in the event that has raised more than $383,000 in the past 15 years. This year 101 plungers braved temperatures in the 20s and took the icy leap into Spirit Lake in front of approximately 1,200 spectators.
What can top these icy winter events? How about the kickoff to the 52nd AMSOIL World Championship Snowmobile Derby week? Starting Jan.9 through Jan. 11 vintage snowmobile racing featuring classic sleds from the 60s and 70s will compete in the Vintage World Championship.
The snow has fallen and made the Northwoods white perfection. Christmas is at our doorstep and soon seasonal visitors will share the wonders of the Holidays up north. Whether curled up in front of a fire, gazing at Christmas tree lights, shushing on a groomed cross country ski trail or pausing on a snowmobile to let a deer cross, there are so many fabulous things to enjoy.
Many of the businesses will be closing early on Christmas Eve to enjoy the evening with family and friends. Churches throughout the area will hold Christmas services Wednesday evening and On Christmas day.
For a listing of worship services in the Minocqua, Woodruff, Arbor Vitae and Lake Tomahawk area, visit the Chamber site at: http://www.minocqua.org/minocqua-area-churches-and-worship.html.
For most of the churches in Vilas County, pick up the Wednesday issue of the Vilas County News Review. Online subscribers can visit their website at: www.vilascountynewsreview.com/lifestyle/churches-plan-holiday-services.
The Lakeland Times also has a comprehensive listing in the Dec. 23 on pages 6, 7 and 10. Details are available online for subscribers at: http://www.lakelandtimes.com/Search.asp?Keyword1=Christmas+church+services&btnsearch.x=50&btnsearch.y=13&SearchBox=1&SectionID=0&ReturnCount=20.
Shall we talk snowmobiling? You bet! Great news is that area trails are open and the recent snow has offset some of the meltdown experienced last week. However, caution is strongly urged, especially in swampy areas. Only cross the lakes where marked and stay within the markers – there needs to be a prolonged period of really cold weather to drive the ice in.
Make sure the snowmobiles are fully gassed if riding on Christmas day. Not all service stations will be open and not all have 24 hour self serve pumps. Most trails will be groomed for riding on Christmas day and it can be some of the best riding of the year!
Cross country skiers and snowshoe enthusiasts will want to prepare for heavy, wet snow conditions for this week.
Once again it looks like it's going to be a picture perfect white Christmas in the Northwoods. After a very scary meltdown, the plummeting temperatures turned the thermometer around and brought several inches of white beauty to the Northwoods. The forecast for the next 10 days looks like it will be even a whiter and a more glorious Christmas!
To add to the festivities, here are a few holiday events some of the communities are offering the public to make the season even merrier!
Eagle River: On Dec. 18, Thursday night from 5:00 - 7:00 PM, the Northwoods Chlidrens Museum invites children and their fathers to attend the free "Fun with Fathers" evening. There will be a dinner and planned activities so it is requested that reservations be made no later than the day before. Call 715-479-4623 or visit www.northwoodschildrensmuseum.com to make reservations.
Don't forget to take a break from shopping in downtown Eagle River and hop on a sleigh ride offered by the downtown businesses on Saturday, Dec. 20 from 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM.
The Sno-Eagles, weather permitting, will leave the Old Train Depot at 9:00 AM for a Christmas Eve ride. This is a superb time to snowmobile pristine trails at a very low traffic time.
Presque Isle: What child doesn't want to spend time with Santa Claus this time of year? A Children's Christmas with Santa begins with a sleigh ride at the intersection of County highways B and W at 6 PM. It's onto the Presque Isle Community Center where the Lions Club, Chamber of Commerce and Library host the children's party complete with caroling, an Advent walk and, of course, a visit by Santa! For more details call 715-686-2910 or 888-835-6508 or check out the website at: www.presqueisle.com.
Minocqua: For last minute shoppers, The Gaslight Square shops will be open until 7:00 PM on Friday, Dec.
The Christmas season is in high gear and, while the communities do a fabulous job with their special events, there are several activities that don’t require a specific time and date.
Rocking W Stables and Sleigh Rides: What is more memorable than taking the family and friends on an authentic sleigh ride in the woods? Dean Nolan, and his staff of drivers, beautiful horses and cozy warming hut, deliver everything that is magical about a sleigh ride. The ride traverses 120 wooded acres populated by deer and other wildlife. Halfway through the hour-long ride, there is a stop at a toasty roaring bonfire complete with delicious hot cocoa or other steamy drinks.
Sleigh rides began on Dec. 12 and continue until Jan. 4. You can hop on a group sleigh or reserve a private one for your group’s size. The price is $10 per person on the group sleigh ride and $100 for a private sleigh for up to 10 people. For more than 10 people, it is an additional $10 per person.
Call for reservations at 715-617-6779. Rocking W Stables is located behind Northland Pines Schools off Highway 45 north on Pleasure Island Road. You can also find them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kartway-Rocking-W-Stables/165105380344576.
Minocqua:The Holiday Model Train Show is open Dec. 13, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 26, 27, 29, 30 2014, at the old train depot in Downtown Minocqua from 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM. The display features O gauge trains, a large scale that was popular before World War II. The display reflects old fashioned Christmases of a bygone era.
Before heading out, you might want to consider throwing your ice skates in the back seat and make a visit to the rink at Torpy Park in Minocqua. There are bathrooms, picnic tables and a warming house at the rink.