Fotos from the Past
Researched by Michael J. Caylor, Jr.
The holiday weekend has come and gone, and we now have a Labor Day Princess. Melanie Lange, 14, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Lange, received her crown Sunday night during the annual dance at the Union Hall. The runner up, Debbie Zahn, 17, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Zahn, was named Miss Merrill. Weather on Monday provided ideal conditions for the parade and the marching competition at the fairgrounds after. The Imperials, a band from Milwaukee, repeated their first place performance during the drum and bugles pageant. The Glengarry Highlanders got top honors during the parade, as did the Merrill VFW for their marching ability. Law enforcement reported a quiet weekend with only a few minor accidents of note. Thousands of cars rolled through town both on Friday and Monday.
Looking for something to do this weekend? Some ideas from the paper include Dick’s Riverside Club where you can get half a chicken pan fried for $1.50 including salad bar. Kentucky Fried Chicken has an anniversary sale going where, if you bring in a coupon from the paper, you will get .81 off a bucket of chicken. The Lincoln County Community Theatre presents “The Impossible Years” this weekend at the high school; admission is $1.25. Over at Club 64 the steak special is T-bone for $1.95. You can also get a chicken dinner for $1.50 or shrimp for $1.95 which includes potato, salad bar and beverage. Buckets of chicken to go start at $2.95. At Club Modern your “Guide to Good Eating” has a weekday special of sirloin for two for $5.95 which includes salad bar.
The sun is shining a little brighter today, and Mrs. Michael Caylor is reported to be doing well after the birth of a son yesterday at Holy Cross Hospital. The child, no doubt wrapped in swaddling clothes, may end up writing a weekly column in the paper, said the presiding physician Dr. Ali Karabee.
The City is moving forward with plans to add onto the wastewater treatment plant, but are not making any promises that the project will be completed by December of next year, as the DNR is requiring. Currently, the plant removes about 25% of the BOD and 45% of the suspended solids in wastewater; however, the addition will see the removal of 90% of the BOD and 95% of the solids before it is discharged back into the Wisconsin River. Mayor Ralph Voigt told Council members that the $1.3 million dollar plant will require them to raise the water rates but not in the near future. A presidential order suspended such increases for now.
The Merrill Area Public Schools (MAPS) Board of Education and the teachers union have agreed to the majority of the concerns for the next contract. Strand Wedul, Assistant Principal at Merrill High School (MHS), said the two sides are just ironing out minor language before the measure is ratified. Wedul said both bargaining groups were watching other districts settle their contract before they agreed on their own terms. Wedul noted that if they ended up in arbitration, the arbitrator would likely just base their decision off of a similar contract in a nearby district, leading the two sides to settle quickly. Under the financial terms of the contract, a wage increase of 11.5% will come the first year, along with a 9.8% increase in 1982. The base salary of a starting teacher is $12,500. ($36,388 in today’s money.)
One teacher at MHS has a strong suspicion that computer use may continue to expand not only in the classroom but as a part of our daily lives, as well. John Gravelle teaches one of two classes taught each semester that deals with the devices, of which Merrill now owns ten. Gravelle tells how, like it or not, computers actually control our banking and even telephone calls. Recently, teachers Bob Casper, Terry Chula, and Louise Schotz took a class at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point to learn about the new “micro-computer” the school bought with grant money. The new computer, which includes a printer, cost $27,000.
The Merrill Labor Day celebration is hemorrhaging money, and one organizer worries whether the show will go on. Ron Kautz reported that low turnout at dances and the grandstand show left the event at a deficit again, and Kautz worries if things will continue next year. Only 300 people made the late grandstand show, and most were from out of the area. Shelley Herdt, daughter of David and Darlene Herdt, was crowned the Labor Day Queen. The runner up, Miss Labor, was Miss Jacqueline Jaeger, daughter of Arthur and Joreen Jaeger; both girls are 14. One sticky issue was that the Merrill High School Marching Jays went behind the horses during the parade. Kautz said some members of the band were late getting into formation because they chose to march early with the City Band, causing their place in line to be pushed back several times.
Mayor Richard Holt cast the tie breaking vote to hire Karyn Lafky as the city’s Park and Rec Director. The Council split 4-4 on the measure, with Alderman Gilbert Sabatke hospitalized and unable to vote. Holt and future mayors may be seen making more tie breaking votes, as the Council also voted to begin the process of eliminating one of the nine aldermanic districts in order to line up with the County’s new supervisory districts.
The Merrill Bluejay football team is off to a slow start, with a 21-6 loss to Eau Claire North Friday. A fumble recovery in the end zone by Steve Drew led to a safety for the only score in the entire second half of the contest for the local boys. Adam Christenson led Merrill in rushing with 71 yards on 19 carries. The Jays will return to the Valley conference on Friday, taking on Wisconsin Rapids.