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Greendale schools closed Monday

Jan. 03, 2014 5:48 p.m. | The Greendale School District announced that all public schools will be closed Monday due to dangerously low temperatures in the forecast, Communications Director Kitty Goyette said in an email.

Greendale is just one of several school districts across the Milwaukee area that has chosen to cancel class on Monday because of concerns regarding a wind chill warning issued by the National Weather Service.

According to www.weather.com, the expected high on Monday will be approximately 13 degrees below zero.

"We're getting the word out now," Goyette said, in regards to notifying parents.

Steady Franklin golfers claim Southeast Conference title

May 23, 2016 8:34 p.m. | It was not a day to go for broke on a difficult and challenging course for the Franklin boys golf team at the Southeast Conference 18-hole finale at Meadowbrook on May 19.

No, this was a day to stay on target, work the game plan and just secure the conference title the team had worked so hard to earn over the course of the regular season.

And oh yes, be good sports along the way.

The Sabers did just that, putting a definitive capper on their first league title since 2013 with a winning 331 total, well head of Racine Horlick (343).

Furthermore, Franklin was also awarded the league's Sportsmanship Award, something that coach Brandon Johnsen was as proud of as the title itself.

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Grease fire damages oven at Franklin bakery

May 20, 2016 7:44 a.m. | A grease fire in an oven at Baptista's Bakery in Franklin caused "minimal" damage to the oven, according to a news release from the Franklin Police Department.

Police and fire personnel responded to a report of a fire at about 1:21 a.m. Friday, May 20, at the bakery, in the 4600 block of West Oakwood Park Drive.

The fire department extinguished a small grease fire in one of the bakery's ovens. The building was evacuated, and there were no injuries.

Five places to go to let your dog off the leash this summer

May 19, 2016 5:32 p.m. | Taking your dog out for a walk can be fun and good exercise for owner and canine alike.

But dogs on a leash are restrained in such a way that it limits their exercise. It keeps them from really being able to stretch their legs and get some speed, as they like to do when they are unharnessed. The Milwaukee County Parks website encourages such behavior in dogs (as well as humans).

"Calling all dogs! Enjoy the Dog Exercise Areas (DEAs) in the parks — where you and your human can run free," the county parks website reads. "Play Frisbee with your human, explore nature, and socialize with the big dogs or visit one of the Dog Exercise Areas with spaces fenced especially for small dogs."

The website claims it's "so much more fun than going for a walk around the block."

Why not find out for yourself? There are a number of places within the county that allow you to let your dog off leash and have some fun together.

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Reptile Day returns June 12 at Wehr Nature Center

May 19, 2016 3:01 p.m. | Those who visit Wehr Nature Center June 12 from 1-4 p.m. will have the chance to meet some reptiles and amphibians up close, according to a news release May 19.

From 1:30 to 2:45 p.m. those in attendance can participate in nature hikes to search for turtles, frogs, and snakes at the Wehr Nature Center, 9701 W. College Avenue in Franklin.

Many different species will be on display including the common snapping turtle, blue-spotted salamander, and timber rattlesnake which are all native t Wisconsin. In addition, a few exotic species will also be there including the Amazon tree boa, ball python, and spiny-tailed lizard.

Oak Creek stuns Whitnall, 12-2, in battle of softball powers

May 19, 2016 12:21 a.m. | Known as a pitcher's game for many years, the batters are starting to catch up in Wisconsin girls' fastpitch softball.

And the 18-6 Southeast Conference leading Oak Creek Knights are embracing that concept with gusto.

They have scored in double digits 12 times this season and did so again on Wednesday in stunning fashion, pounding 16 hits to run-rule fourth-ranked in state D2 polls Whitnall, 12-2, in what was supposed to be an intriguing nonconference southside showdown at Oak Creek East Middle School.

"Everyone is just crushing the ball," said Oak Creek coach Jeff Trask. "We start getting a few hits and it saps the energy  out of the opposing team. Hitting is just contagious on our team. We just need a couple of kids to put it together and off we go."

The player the Knights fed off of today was pitcher Becca Oleniczak. She gave up a two-run homer to her opposing number, Falcons' hurler Alex Cimler, in the top of the first, but then got Oak Creek back into the game with a solo home run of her own in the bottom of the frame.

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Crash closes portion of Highway 100 in Hales Corners May 18

May 18, 2016 1:30 p.m. | A crash on northbound Highway 100 in Hales Corners has blocked all lanes in one direction according to a release from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation State Traffic Operations Center.

Highway 100 northbound is closed at Edgerton Avenue due to the incident. The I-43 westbound off ramp to Highway 100 northbound is also closed.

The crash occurred at 11:50 a.m. May 18 with an estimated duration of over two hours.

The Milwaukee County Sheriff is handling the incident.

UPDATE:The crash has been cleared and all lanes are open.

Oak Creek approves $13 million financing help for Ikea store

May 18, 2016 10:35 a.m. | The Oak Creek Common Council has approved a proposal for $13 million in city financing help for Wisconsin's first Ikea store.

The council voted 5-1 Tuesday night to approve the development agreement.

The only opponent was Ald. Mark Verhalen, who said the expense "was a little bit more than the city can handle at this time."

Supporters said the financing proposal was helping to draw a world-renowned retailer, generating both property tax revenue and jobs. They also said the plan minimized the risk to the city by reducing its upfront costs.

Ikea will obtain the city cash through annual refunds of the $50 million store's property taxes for up to 20 years, said Doug Seymour, community development director, and Gerald Peterson, city administrator.

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Franklin girls soccer team finishes second at Kiel tournament

May 17, 2016 10:48 p.m. | Just in time for the stretch run, the Franklin girls soccer team is finding its legs.

The Sabers turned in a 4-1 record last week, including two wins in the Kiel Tournament on May 14 before falling to an unbeaten Oostburg side, 3-1, in the final.

Coach Casey Roche is pleased with the direction the Sabers are headed in.

"We didn't put our best game together in the finals, and it was obvious," he said. "However ... to finish as the tournament runner-up is a positive accomplishment in itself."

Franklin downed Mayville, 4-3, in overtime penalty kicks to open the tournament and then overpowered Sheboygan Christian, 5-2, in the semifinals before falling to Oostburg.

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Why did IKEA choose Oak Creek? Location

May 17, 2016 7:55 p.m. | Oak Creek — With the announcement of retail giant IKEA opening their first Wisconsin store in Oak Creek, many wondered why the company chose that location, especially with IKEA stores situated in northern Illinois.

Joseph Roth, an expansion public affairs representative for IKEA, said the retailer had been looking to open a store in Wisconsin, specifically the Milwaukee area, on and off for about 10 years.

Roth described the Schaumburg (Illinois) store, the closest one to Wisconsin, as "very busy." He said one reason they were looking at the Milwaukee area was to help relieve some of the pressure on that store, saying that already more than 200,000 shoppers from Wisconsin visit the northern Illinois stores as well as a store in Bloomington, Minnesota. That's not counting area residents who shop online for IKEA products.

"We were willing to wait until we found the right spot," Roth said.

Off the interstate

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Oak Creek to honor veterans May 30

May 17, 2016 3:27 p.m. | Oak Creek is honoring all fallen military veterans with a ceremony at 9 a.m. May 30.

Held at Forest Hill Memorial Park Cemetery, the program will take place on the east side of the cemetery, located at 15th Avenue and Forest Hill Avenue in Oak Creek.

Initial Reaction Podcast: A chat with award-winning sportscaster Dennis Krause

May 17, 2016 11:45 a.m. | JR and JP chat with one of JP's colleagues - the highly decorated Dennis Krause of Time Warner Cable Sports Channel - to talk about the Milwaukee sports market, the evolving sports business, the appetite for Packers content and more. Would Dennis give Giannis the max deal, and is the window closing on the Green Bay Packers? In other news, can Wily Peralta be saved and will Nigel Hayes return to Wisconsin? 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.

Oak Creek's Marwin Evans signs with Green Bay Packers

May 14, 2016 8:28 a.m. | When it comes to assessing football talent, let's just say that we the staff of Now Newspapers are well-meaning but sometimes flawed.

Guess where we put recent Green Bay Packers free-agent signee and big-time overachiever Marwin Evans on our 2010 All-Suburban team?

Honorable mention.

Oops!

So let's just say that we missed the mark and be done with it with the strong and fast 5-11, 211-pound safety out of Utah State and Oak Creek, who officially signed with the Packers on May 9.

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Help clean up Hales Corners May 14

May 13, 2016 11:21 a.m. | Hales Corners — The friends of Hales Corners Park and Pool are holding their annual community cleanup event May 14 to from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Hales Corners Pool House.

Volunteers are asked to bring gloves, brooms, and rakes to 5675 S. New Berlin Road. Refreshments and lunch will be provided.

Know Your Muslim Neighbors event being held at Hales Corners Library May 14

May 12, 2016 12:43 p.m. | Hales Corners — A "Know Your Muslim Neighbors" event is being held at the Hales Corners Library from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. May 14 sponsored by Masjid Al-Huda mosque and Mohammad Imran, owner of Prime Printing in Hales Corners.

The event at 5885 S. 116th Street hopes to cover topics relating to what Muslims believe and practice, if Islam is really a religion of peace, who Muhammad is, and how Muslims contribute to society. A keynote speech will be given at noon.

Free books, brochures, and snacks will be available, according to a flyer for the event.

"This program is timely in that we are all bombarded on a daily basis from the media about Muslims and Islam," said village trustee Don Schwartz.

Schwartz said Imran is "one of the best people I have ever known in my life," saying he sponsored various community functions and "is a valuable community stakeholder."

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Hard-hitting Oak Creek softball team charges into SEC lead

May 10, 2016 9:34 p.m. | Oak Creek girls softball coach Jeff Trask is an understandably superstitious fellow.

His team is smashing the ball all over the diamond, they've had two recent successful high-level road trips over which they've combined to turn in a solid 4-2 record and early last week they beat both Kenosha Bradford and Kenosha Indian Trail in a pair of pivotal Southeast Conference games to shoot themselves two games ahead in the loss column with only five games to go.

Only Trask doesn't want to talk about the league lead yet or the corresponding chance at a conference title.

He's keeping his message to his team simple, and it all revolves around the word "Focus."

"I know we have that lead in the loss column," he said, "but that's not discussed. I've seen how teams in this conference have beaten each other up. and I know it could happen to us if we're not careful."

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