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Police discover loaded weapon on drunken driver

Dec. 28, 2012 1:54 p.m. | Menomonee Falls police officers investigating a report of a car in the ditch found a driver who was loaded in more ways than one.

According to police:

The driver of a 1996 Ford truck left the roadway on the north side of Lisbon Road and drove about 70 feet before entering a deep ditch about 1,500 feet east of Graysland Drive East at about 11:30 a.m. Dec. 20. The truck damaged a fence during the accident and the driver had minor injuries.

Officers noticed an odor of intoxicants coming from the driver, a 52-year-old Menomonee Falls man. When questioned, the driver readily admitted drinking rum and Cokes that morning at home before driving his vehicle. He failed field sobriety tests and was arrested for drunken driving. His blood alcohol content was 0.13.

During a vehicle search police also discovered the driver had a loaded .44 magnum revolver in his truck.

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New York manufacturer to acquire Magnetek for $188.9 million

4:43 p.m. | Magnetek Inc. of Menomonee Falls is being acquired by a New York-based manufacturer of material handling products for $188.9 million.

Columbus McKinnon Corp. said the deal will help it add Magnetek's digital controls to improve the safety of the cranes and hoists it sells.

The $50 per share purchase price represents a 55% premium from Magnetek's closing stock price last week.

Columbus McKinnon makes cranes and hoists as well as actuators and rigging tools. It has annual sales of $579.6 million.

Magnetek, which employs 340 people, designs and produces digital power and motion control systems used in material handling, elevators and the mining industry.

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Manchester was a giant in world of Menomonee Falls athletics

2:23 p.m. | A quiet man, whose few words were important.

A direct man, who commanded attention without drawing too much attention to himself.

A stern-looking man, who could be surprisingly deadpan funny.

A man of faith, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, teacher, coach and administrator during two great transition periods in Menomonee Falls athletic history, long-time Merton-area resident Edward ("Eddie") L. Manchester Sr. passed away on July 2 at the age of 83 after a long illness.

"He was a huge influence on my life and career," said retired Falls High School Principal Richard P. Woosencraft . "... He was an old school football coach and a very positive Christian guy. He was a football coach, but he was also a guy who opened a lot of doors to girls athletics and did a lot of things for the district."

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Six-run fourth lifts Menomonee Falls to semifinal win over Pewaukee

1:33 p.m. | Menomonee Falls pitching coach Dave Weber made it easy and simple for the Indian players collected at the mound during the very shaky fourth inning in their 8-3 WIAA state semifinal victory over Pewaukee on July 24 at Kapco Park.

The Pirates had scored three times, courtesy of three uncharacteristic Falls errors in the frame and had shot ahead, 3-2.

In Weber's eyes, it was time for everyone to calm down.

"You run into these innings sometimes," said Weber. "I just told the guys to stop trying so hard. Just relax, be yourselves and support one another."

The Indians, including Weber's son, ace pitcher Ty, did just that. Ty Weber struck out the final two batters of the inning to minimize the damage and end the threat.

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Falls baseball team routs Franklin for state championship

9:15 a.m. | “We didn’t come here to finish second.”

That was the assertion of Menomonee Falls junior ace and co-captain Ty Weber after he led the Indians baseball team to a victory in the WIAA state semifinal at Kapco Park in Mequon the afternoon of July 24, mere hours before an 11-0 win in the state-championship battle against Franklin.

The Indians are familiar with the concept of second place. Old Falls High in 1968 took silver, as did Falls North in 1977, in addition to new Falls High in 2001 and again in 2004. Weber’s Dad, Falls legend Dave Weber, had coached the 2001 team and was an assistant to Pat Hansen in 2004.

And Ty, having been a much tinier version of his current 6-4 self during the 2001 and 2004 campaigns, bore witness as one Falls powerhouse after another was stymied either at state or in the sectionals, the frustration growing with each tough loss.

So young Mr. Ty, so much more mature than a junior in high school should be, was absolutely delighted to be a cog when the wheel finally turned around later that same evening.

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District names new Rockfield Elementary principal

July 23, 2015 2:03 p.m. | The Germantown School District has named Dana Croatt as the new principal at Rockfield Elementary School.

The school board approved the contract for Croatt following a closed session discussion on July 15. Croatt, along with other finalists for the position, was also interviewed earlier this month by a panel of 20 individuals, including board members, directors, principals, Rockfield teachers and support staff, and parents.

The interview process, conducted on July 8, included a tour of the campus by two Rockfield students, a presentation by each finalist to the panel, interview questions and a writing prompt related to the Summit process and future of the Germantown Way, according to information provided by Human Resources Director Cynthia Coley.

Croatt replaces former Rockfield principal Adrienne Schneider, who resigned from the position. She holds her doctorate degree in K-12 Leadership, as well as a master's degree in elementary education and bachelor's degree in intellectual disabilities. Croatt's experience includes eight years in the teaching field as a high school resource teacher, inclusion specialist and resource/inclusion specialist. She served as a K-8 principal for five years before accepting an elementary principal position in the Greenfield School District, which she held for the past two years.

Inaugural mud run raises $4K for Germantown teacher grants

July 23, 2015 9:43 a.m. | The Germantown Community Scholarship Fund (GCSF) raised nearly $4,000 for its teacher grant program during its inaugural Mini Run June 28 at Germantown High School. The run through the muddy obstacle course attracted 304 participants.

More than 100 community and student volunteers worked to help get this event off and running, along with the support of local Germantown businesses and Germantown High School.

"More than 20 community businesses, service organizations and individuals came together to assist in the planning, development, creation and implementation of this event," added Deb Stresing, president of the GCSF board. "We have a great community here in Germantown helping make fundraisers such as this one a success."

For more information and a list of event sponsors visit All proceeds from the Mini Run for Funds help support Germantown teachers through the GCSF Teacher Grant program. Since 2004, the GCSF board has awarded 22 teacher grants totaling $11,000.

Germantown resident wins MS scholarship

July 23, 2015 9:13 a.m. | The National Multiple Sclerosis Society-Wisconsin Chapter has announced that Lauren Zylka from Germantown has been awarded a $1,000 Rabbits Unlimited, Ltd. Scholarship.

Zylka, a student at Viterbo University, will use the scholarship for her continuing studies in nursing.

Zylka's scholarship is one of more than 800 new and renewal scholarships nationwide, 37 of which were awarded in Wisconsin.

The MS Society's annual scholarship program helps students affected by multiple sclerosis pursue a college or technical school education. It is open to individuals who have MS or have a parent with MS, and who will be attending an accredited postsecondary school for any year of undergraduate study in working toward their first undergraduate degree.

Applications are evaluated on financial need, academic record, leadership and volunteer activities; a statement of educational and career goals; and letters of recommendation. Applicants are also asked to provide a personal statement describing the impact MS has had on their lives.

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The Suburban 16 Power Rankings: Watt, Niebrugge, and others on the next level

July 22, 2015 11:30 a.m. | (Editor's note: After a late addition putting Anthony Pettis in the top 15, the "Suburban 15" was expanded to the "Suburban 16")

The meteoric rise just continues.

Pewaukee graduate J.J. Watt, once a scholarship tight end at Central Michigan and then a walk-on at the University of Wisconsin, was voted the No. 1 player in the National Football League by the league's players in a poll conducted by the NFL Network.

Higher than Aaron Rodgers (No. 2) and Tom Brady (No. 3). Higher than anyone could have imagined even when he became the 11th overall selection in the 2011 NFL Draft. Even with his second career NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award last year, it's still staggering to think that when the players in the NFL consider who the league's best player is, they turn to Watt.

Sure, all rankings have to be taken with a grain of salt, but especially with the accomplishments of Watt and Jordan Niebrugge, a Homestead graduate who shot an amateur-record round of 67 at the British Open and then tied for sixth in the tourney, there have been some exciting accomplishments racked up by local products. Considering athletes who competed in high school in the Now Newspapers or Lake Country Publications coverage area (and remain active), here's my Suburban 16, where I attempt to rank players based on exposure, impact and post-prep accomplishments.

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Initial Reaction Podcast: A dumb-sports-fan's guide to the Bucks arena financing situation

July 21, 2015 2:05 p.m. | JP tries his best to explain the machinations behind the state senate voting in favor of a Bucks arena financing plan, plus a lot more from a big week of Wisconsin sports (Favre! Niebrugge!). Also, JP shares his impressions from the WFCA All-Star football game.

Familiar face to lead Germantown parks department

July 21, 2015 1:11 p.m. | Germantown —The man who started it all will soon reprise his role as director of the Village of Germantown's Park and Recreation Department.

Following a closed session discussion on July 20, the village board unanimously voted to appoint Mark Schroeder as the village's park and recreation director – a role that is not entirely new to him.

"He actually started our park and recreation department back in 1984," Village Administrator David Schornack said.

Schroeder held that title from March 1984 through July 2001, Schornack said, before moving on to serve as director of the New Berlin Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department, a position he held until recently.

According to the Germantown Park and Recreation Department's history, the position of recreation director started in 1971 as a part-time role held by the Germantown High School athletic director before the village hired its first full-time recreation director in 1980. That title was later changed to park and recreation director in 1984, with the Park and Recreation Department functioning as a one-person operation until 1994.

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Battle-tested Menomonee Falls confident heading into state tourney

July 21, 2015 11:48 a.m. | Down 3-2 to Whitefish Bay late in the regional final on July 17?

No problem.

Homestead rallied to tie the score in the second and then brought its best hitter to the plate in the seventh in a one-run game with two-men on in the sectional semifinal July 20?

No worries.

Grafton erased a 1-0 deficit to take a 2-1 lead in the sixth of the sectional final at Cahill Park in Whitefish Bay later that same day?

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Wine added to Falls Fest lineup

July 21, 2015 10:18 a.m. | Menomonee Falls residents will see some changes at the 23rd annual Falls Fest this weekend.

Susan Steliga, one of the organizers of the event, said, "Probably the biggest change, one that people have been asking for, is that we will be serving wine."

Falls Fest patrons will be able to enjoy five selections of wine provided by LoDuca Brothers.

And wine isn't the only special beverage that will be available this year. Jess's Place, named in honor of 28-year Menomonee Falls High School football coach Jim Jeskewitz, has been expanded this year and will have a beer garden featuring specialty beers such as Lake Front Riverwest Stein, Leine Summer Shandy, and Horny Goat.

While enjoying their beer, visitors to Jess's Place will also be able to listen to musicians such as Eric Darnell, On Point, and Dueling Pianos at the new Champions Stage.

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Menomonee Falls' DeCloux crowned Waukesha County's Fairest of the Fair

July 20, 2015 9:48 p.m. | The Fairest of the Fair of Waukesha County goes to Danielle DeCloux of Menomonee Falls.

DeCloux won the annual Fairest of the Fair competition at the county fair on July 15. The sophomore at UW Oshkosh beat out Talia Spiegelberg of Oconomowoc and Sarah Stock of Mukwonago. DeCloux was first runner-up at last year's competition but said she didn't think she would win this year and "didn't expect this at all."

"I was just really excited," DeCloux said. "Over half my life has been dedicated to the fair, and I'm excited to be a part of something that has been part of my life for over a decade. Wow, I can't believe this actually happened. I never actually thought about it happening, so when it happened I was just like wow."

DeCloux said she wasn't as nervous as last year, and that it was easier the second time around. She also said she was relaxed through the whole process and didn't even think she would win.

"It was nervous excitement," she said. "I wasn't as nervous as I was last year, that's for sure. I didn't feel anxious or nauseous or anything like that; it was nervous energy. I felt like I needed to get up and dance."

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Germantown's Anderson leaves boys golf program in a better place

July 20, 2015 8:58 p.m. | Of course, there was much ado and commotion following the recent surprise resignation of Germantown boys basketball coach Steve Showalter.

After all, the high-profile hoops program he built was made to draw attention.

But someone else in the Warhawk coaching strata recently took his leave, and one would think that the announcement of veteran boys golf coach Gary Anderson, who like Showalter was on his job for 15 years, would pass with some hearty handshakes, a few sincere "thank yous" and not really much more than that.

But when I put Anderson's announcement on Twitter on the night of May 26, something interesting happened, because by my Twitter standards, that little note congratulating him on his efforts took on the air of a speeding train, and it shows no sign of slowing down.

It's clear the man will be missed more than anyone could imagine.

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Menomonee Falls baseball team turns to Gile again, survives regional test

July 20, 2015 8:28 p.m. | It's now a fact: Menomonee Falls sophomore shortstop Nick Gile loves the tense moments with all the pressure attached to them.

A week after recording two clutch saves in the Indian baseball team's run to the Greater Metro Conference tourney title, Gile was at it again July 17 in Falls' intense WIAA regional final struggle with red-hot Whitefish Bay.

In relief of Indian ace Ty Weber, Gile got Falls out of a bases-loaded jam in a 3-3 tie in the sixth and then dropped a soft liner just in front of the Blue Duke rightfielder to drive in Zach Kornburger with what proved to be the winning run in a 4-3 decision.

Just for good measure, Gile then went out and earned the win by ending all of Bay's hopes with a three-up, three-down seventh, only the second such inning for either side on the warm and muggy night at Trenary.

"For sure, it's the playoffs," Gile said. "We're not going to take anyone lightly. I was expecting Ty (Weber) to go a long way (in the game), but when you're called on, you've got to come through.

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