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Meijer pulls plans for Franklin store

Jan. 28, 2013 4:44 p.m. | Franklin - A Meijer official today informed Mayor Tom Taylor that the company is no longer pursuing a 190,000-square-foot store at the southwest corner of Highway 100 and Loomis Road.

Taylor told NOW Newspapers that Mike Flickinger, director of real estate for Meijer, called to inform him of the decision. He noted that the decision centered on the company's difficulty in getting approval from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to build on or near the site's wetlands.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation also had some difficulty with the entrance and exit traffic flow plan of the site, though that concern reportedly had been cleared in recent months.

"Meijer is a quality store and they tried to come up to the standards that we as a city had established for architecture, landscaping and the location of the docks," Taylor said.

He noted that the potential flooding and traffic issues were problematic throughout the process.

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Oak Creek baseball team wins fourth straight GMC title

June 30, 2016 10:15 p.m. | They were the kids who came in as freshmen right after the 2012 WIAA state champions graduated, the ones who faced down all the history that four state championships and a host of conference titles brings.

But this current 10-person senior class of the Oak Creek baseball program has lived up to expectations so far. They finished off their fourth straight Greater Metro Conference champoionship with an impressive 11-1 six-inning win opver Brookfield Central Thursday night.

Now they want to take it a step further, and join the 2012 group and the three other classes that hosted the ultimate trophy at the end of the season in saying that they are worthy of being mentioned as among the best in school history.

If they do, it'll be because they continued to do the day-by-day things, the simple, mundane things. Doing those things will help make accomplishing the bigger, more difficult tasks still coming easier and more satisfying.

As of now, that's the path the Knights are on, said outfielder/pitcher and four-year letterwinner Matt Hamilton.

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20,000 pounds of cheese stolen in Oak Creek

June 30, 2016 3:06 p.m. | Oak Creek —In a cheesy caper, 20,000 pounds of cheese was stolen in a semi truck trailer June 30.

The trailer was parked at the 7900 block of 27th Street near Drexel Avenue and was left for a few hours while the driver "ran some errands," according to Captain Mike Bolender of the Oak Creek Police Department.

When the driver returned, the all white, unmarked, refrigerated semi trailer was gone. It was reported missing at 2 a.m.

The cheese was a variety of different types from U.S. Foods and is valued at a little over $46,000.

The police department are "looking at several leads" and "looking at all different angles" Bolender said. Security cameras are one such lead the police are pursuing.

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Franklin resident one of the first to use new heart monitoring device

June 30, 2016 1:45 p.m. | Franklin —Franklin resident Carol Gulczynski is one of the first patients in southeast Wisconsin to use new health technology for heart failure.

The new device, called CardioMEMS, is a pulmonary artery pressure censor device the size of a paper clip that gets implanted in patient's hearts. It's a new step toward proactive health care, meaning that doctors can help patients before they actually get sick. Instead of waiting for signs that someone is experiencing heart failure, the device catches important pressure changes in the heart that may eventually lead to the patient needing to be hospitalized.

For Gulczynski, this allowed her to cut down drastically on hospital visits. Before getting the device, she was hospitalized twice in the span of six months, but 11 months after she got the device implanted last July, she has not been admitted once.

"It's a world of difference," Gulczynski said. "I know that I am being watched every day...and they'll let me know if they're is any problem. My children, they can't get over it, it's just so great."

Before, the only way to monitor heart pressures was a right heart catheterization, an invasive screening that was neither time or cost effective. The new device is able to check fluid levels and pressures daily, and Gulczynski doesn't even have to leave her home.

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Portable toilet "blown up" in Franklin

June 30, 2016 12:53 p.m. | Franklin —A portable toilet was "blown up" near the BMX track of The Rock Sports Complex in Franklin the evening of Sunday, June 26, according to the Franklin Police Department's Facebook page.

The Franklin Police Department received several reports that night between 8 p.m. and 11:15 p.m. of "sound of shots fired" and an "explosion" in the northwest area of the city, Wyndham Hills Subdivision to the 75000 block of West Rawson Avenue.

Investigation found that a "port-a-john" was "blown up" near the BMX track.

Extra patrol has been placed in the area to deter any further damage to the area.

Franklin to celebrate 60th anniversary

June 29, 2016 4:18 p.m. | Franklin — Almost exactly 60 years ago, Franklin officials were hiding in barns, marking the beginning of Franklin's process to become a city.

In June of 1956, the city of Milwaukee filed a petition to annex Franklin, which the people of the town wanted to avoid. In an attempt to evade this fate, city officials went into hiding so that they could avoid being served papers. If the papers were not delivered within a certain span of time, then Milwaukee could not continue the process of annexation.

Franklin won the game of hide-and-seek, and soon after, officials headed off to Madison to make Franklin an incorporated city.

Now, six decades later, Franklin will celebrate its 60th anniversary during the civic celebration Fourth of July weekend.

As a part of the celebration, four of the city's former mayors, Tom Taylor, Pat Murray, Fred Klimetz, and Mark Miazga, will be riding on a float in the 4th of July Parade, and July 2 the city will have an additional fireworks show at dusk in honor of the city's anniversary.

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Referendum will be held to decide fate of Forest Park Middle School

June 29, 2016 3:15 p.m. | Franklin — The Franklin School Board has decided voters will decide the fate of Forest Park Middle School.

But whether voters will be asked if the school should be lightly or heavily modified or perhaps entirely replaced by a new building has not been decided.

Board members voted unanimously June 22 to bring the issue to a referendum, given the current problems and limitations at the middle school.

"Inefficiencies in the learning environment, security, the life span of some building systems, and planning ahead for the future educational needs of the community combined with the valuable input from the survey led to the consideration to go to a referendum," School Board President Janet Evans said.

According to a survey conducted by Community Perceptions, 62 percent of Franklin residents would support the district exploring a referendum to update Franklin Park Middle school at this time; 23 percent of residents responded no to the question, and 16 percent reported they were "undecided."

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Franklin continues to explore implications of Ballpark Commons project

June 29, 2016 2:36 p.m. | Franklin —Franklin City Council will continue to explore the feasibility of a Tax Incremental District (TID) for the area of the proposed Ballpark Commons.

The council voted Tuesday, June 28 to extend the contract with Ehlers & Associates, who conducted the preliminary TID funding feasibility study, for tax incremental financing services related to the development. The TID, if made effective, would allow the city to use additional taxes gained from the development to fund infrastructure changes the plan required.

At the meeting, Mayor Steve Olson stressed that the city has not officially approved the project or any tax changes.

"This is a first report on financial viability of the project," Olson said, explaining that they will continue to explore the many implications of the project.

The development team is continuing to adapt the project plans to meet the conditions put in place by the council for the proposal, and has completed 10 out of 40 so far, according to a report by Planning Manager Joel Dietl.

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Initial Reaction Podcast: A look ahead to US Open 2017, look back at Champions Tour event in Madison

June 29, 2016 2:00 p.m. | Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel sports columnist and golf writer Gary D'Amato stops by to chat about the next U.S. Open, to be hosted at Erin Hills Golf Course in Erin, Wisconsin. He also talks a little Bucks draft, and JP and JR focus on the selection of Thon Maker and the landing spots for former Wisconsin prep products Henry Ellenson and Diamond Stone. Plus, JP reports back from the inaugural PGA Tour Champions event, the American Family Insurance Championship, in Madison and the Kohler Grand Prix IndyCar race at Elkhart Lake. Each week, Lake Country/Now sports director JR Radcliffe and Time Warner Cable Sports Channel's JP Cadorin chat about the Wisconsin sports scene, with an emphasis on Milwaukee-area preps. Find the podcast on Stitcher and iTunes.

Franklin approves new self-storage facility on 27th street

June 29, 2016 1:49 p.m. | Franklin —The Franklin Common Council approved the drive-in storage facility proposed for 27th street, on the property that was previously Hobby Lobby, but with conditions at the meeting June 28.

Highland Development Ventures, who will own the property, will have to add additional landscaping to the site, add architecture detail on the outside storage building, and verify their hours in the resolution.

Residents of the area had expressed concerns at the plan commission meeting June 9 about the appearance of the building, along with concerns about potential noise and light pollution.

However, Alderman Kristen Wilhelm, the representative of the district where the storage facility will be located, said that the outside storage building should be able to block the sound and the extra landscaping should make the property more visually appealing.

"It (conditions to the plan) has brought the current warehousing facility up a few notches that the residents can be satisfied with," Wilhelm said.

Franklin's Chmielewski inducted into UW-Oshkosh Hall of Fame

June 28, 2016 1:52 p.m. | Simply put, recent University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh Athletic Hall of Fame inductee Kay (Mikolajczak) Chmielewski makes juggling career, marriage, motherhood and the occasional marathon and basketball tournament look so easy that the Franklin graduate can scarcely believe the multitude of honors she has earned.

"This was not on my radar at all," she said of this past spring's induction. "I was at an alumni event (last fall) talking with the sports information director when he told me to be ready, that I was going to get a call about this (the hall of fame) soon.

"And I said, 'Excuse me?'"

But she shouldn't be so incredulous.

The 6-0 Chmielewski came out out of the first golden age of Franklin girls athletics. She was the rebounding machine and all-important second threat on the late Christine Rathke-led 1999 WIAA state runner-up girls basketball team. Later that spring, she was a key long sprinter on the WIAA state runner-up girls track team coached by former Saber Athletic Director Don Kurth.

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Oak Creek baseball team passes big test, ready for GMC stretch run

June 28, 2016 1:28 p.m. | The Oak Creek baseball team has passed many tests en route to a one-game lead with just three contests left in the Greater Metro Conference race.

What it hasn't had a lot of time for is a great deal of high-level nonconference action, so the Knights made a road trip to a place where they haven't been since 2005, a place where even the legendary Tony Butler proved to be mortal.

Knight baseball coach Scott Holler could only smile at the memory.

"The last time we were at Rennicke Field (in Mequon), Tony (Butler) was playing first base, and a ground ball went through his legs, and we lost," Holler said, laughing.

The comment came shortly after the Knights put together a solid effort on Jun. 24, especially on the defensive end, in their return trip to Rennicke, with a 7-3 decision over a good Homestead team.

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2016 Fourth of July events in the Milwaukee suburbs

June 28, 2016 11:50 a.m. | From the North Shore, to Oak Creek and Franklin, to Wauwatosa and Brookfield and West Allis and New Berlin, and all of the other communities within the MyCommunity NOW coverage area, there are plenty of Fourth of July festivities to take part in. Below is a list separated by county and in alphabetical order of events planned to celebrate Independence Day 2016. If you know of an event you don't see listed below, email us at news@jrn.com.  

Milwaukee County

Bay View

Juy 4

Celebrate the 4th of July in Humboldt Park, 3000 S. Howell Ave. This year’s theme is joining hands for peace. No alcoholic beverages are allowed in Milwaukee County Parks without a permit. For the latest updates, visit www.city.milwaukee.gov/july4th.

9 to 10:15 a.m.: parade, starting at South Kinnickinnic Avenue and East Linus Street, proceeds to park.

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HCFD raises around $5,000 to donate to Operation Finally Home

June 28, 2016 11:06 a.m. | Hales Corners —The Hales Corners Fire Department "filled the bucket" with around $5,000 Friday, June 24 to donate to Operation Finally Home, an organization that builds homes for wounded veterans.

Off-duty firefighters and their families stood on the corner of Highway 100 and Grange in Hales Corners with buckets, asking drivers to donate to Operation Finally Home, who is currently working toward building a home for a veteran in Waukesha.

According to David Belman, a contractor who works with Operation Finally Home, the organization tries to get most of the materials for the house donated, but monetary donations are still needed to cover the price of additional materials and labor.

Wes Guajardo, captain at the Hales Corners Fire Department, says that "Fill the Bucket" is just one of the ways HCFD shows their support to the military.

"It allows us to help those who served, or their families, by giving them a home," Guajardo said.

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Franklin Library to once again host "Writer's Nights"

June 28, 2016 10:09 a.m. | Franklin Public Library will once again begin hosting Writer's Night the first Thursday of every month at 6:30 p.m. starting Thursday, July 7 in the Sievert Conference Room in the library, 9151 W Loomis Rd.

Writer's Night is intended to be a "pressure free" place where local writers can share their work, receive constructive criticism, learn from each other, and commiserate over the joys and sorrow of being a writer. Each meeting starts with a writing prompt, which changes with the participants' needs.

For more information about Writers' Night, contact Programming & Outreach Coordinator Caitlin Sprague at 414-425-8214 or Caitlin.Sprague@mcfls.org.

Franklin Library will host "Princess of Magic" June 28

June 27, 2016 2:59 p.m. | Franklin Public Library, 9151 W. Loomis Rd, will host Julie Sobanski, "The Princess of Magic" 11 a.m. Tuesday, June 28 as a part of their children's summer reading program.

Sobanski has performed for over a decade, and won a variety of magic performance awards. In a profession mostly filled with men, Sobanski is one of the few performing "magiciennes," or female magicians.

This event is free and open to the public. The library recommends the program for children ages three and up.

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