Peninsula Pulse March 29 – April 5, 2024

In this issue

  • Door County League Seeks More Umpires

    The 2024 Door County Baseball League season, which is scheduled to begin May 12, now looks like it will open with shortages in the umpire pool. With retirements and relocations, the league is stretched thin on fielding eight umpires every week. Umpire-in-chief for the DCBL, Roger Van Lanen, urges anyone interested in becoming a baseball […]

  • Obituary: Marilynn Marjorie (Whitwell) Orthober

    July 6, 1941 – March 31, 2024 Marilynn Marjorie Orthober, 82, of Carlsville, passed away at home on March 31, 2024. She was born July 6, 1941, in Canada to George and Myrtle (Grimes) Whitwell. On Oct. 1, 1960, she married Gary H. Orthober in Egg Harbor at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. For […]

  • Obituary: Nancy A. Krause

    b. 1933 – April 1, 2024 Nancy “Nan” Ann Krause, 91, went to be with the Lord on Monday, April 1, 2024 after a slow decline these past years and a brief illness the past months. Nan was born Nov. 9, 1932 in Wausau, the daughter of William and Eleanor (Gehrke) Pautz. On July 9, […]

  • Obituary: Mary S. Schranz

    Sept. 28, 1958 – March 29, 2024 Mary Sue Schranz, 65, of the Town of Sturgeon Bay, was born to eternal life on Friday, March 29, 2024 after a four year battle with endometrial cancer. She was born on Sept. 28, 1958 in Crystal Lake, Illinois to Frederick and Joyce (Hendricks) Schranz. The family moved […]

  • Obituary: Leon “Lee” Curtis Sleiter

    Nov. 14, 1952 – March 29, 2024 Leon “Lee” Curtis Sleiter, 71 of Sturgeon Bay, went to his eternal home on March 29, 2024. Lee was born on November 14, 1952, to Richard and Joyce Sleiter in Ashland, WI. As a young child he moved to Sturgeon Bay where he loved to play baseball, run […]

  • Obituary: Donna Joy (Franke) Hupe

    Nov. 16, 1938 ~ March 27, 2024 Donna Joy Hupe (nee Franke) of Sister Bay, died peacefully on March 27, 2024, surrounded by her beloved family. Born on Nov. 16, 1938, Donna lived a life marked by family, community, and a variety of interests. Donna is survived by her devoted husband Ronald, with whom she […]

  • Obituary: Alan Francis Bell

    Feb. 9, 1943 – March 6, 2024 Alan F. Bell, age 81, of Madison, died on Wednesday, March 6, 2024, at St. Mary’s Care Center. He was born on Feb. 9, 1943, in Sturgeon Bay, the son of Joshua and Catherine (McCormick) Bell. Alan graduated from Gibraltar High School in Fish Creek in 1961. He […]

  • Obituary: Joseph Pongratz

    Oct. 22, 1933 – March 27, 2024 Joseph Pongratz, 90 years of Egg Harbor, passed away Wednesday morning, March 27, 2024, at Sturgeon Bay Health Services. He was born Oct. 22, 1933, in Milwaukee the son of German immigrants, Joseph and Rosina (Eckmueller) Pongratz. Joseph served his country in the U.S. Air Force. He worked […]

  • Letter to the Editor: Help Fill Our Hives By Not Mowing Until June 1

    Global warming affects the bees too. Hives in the wild are in tree crevices or shaded areas during summers, and other places that are protected from direct sun and cause less stress on bees. Winter, when trees shed their leaves allows hives to be warmed during winter. With spring arriving, ‘bee’ a sanctuary – do […]

  • Letter to the Editor: Opposed to Adding Parking at Eagle Tower

    The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is proposing a Master Plan Variance to add up to 100 parking stalls in the Eagle Tower area at Peninsula State Park. The DNR seems to feel it is responsible to accommodate the expectation of every visitor for a parking spot at any time. It is not. Parking […]

  • Letter to the Editor: Please Choose Democracy

    For me, it’s about democracy (a way of governing which depends on the will of the people). Restricting voting is not democracy. Removing rights from specific groups of people is not democracy. Redistricting our states to falsely diminish the strength of voting areas is not democracy. Legislators refusing to discuss issues that are important to […]

  • Letter to the Editor: How Will We Be Judged?

    “That the people should not only have submitted to it but upheld and supported him in his encroachments upon their rights, and his disregard of the Constitution and the laws, will equally occasion the surprise and indignation of future generations.” One would assume that this quote  is a reflection on the Trump presidency, but it […]

  • Letter to the Editor: Wait a Minute!

    Tax-exempt retirement accounts that are currently taxable. (Again, sounds good, Joel!) BUT! Yes, “but”! Roth retirement accounts are non-taxable at retirement because that money was already taxed “at the beginning.” But the money Joel et al want to exempt was never taxed. Actually it was deducted from income through the years to reduce taxable income, […]

  • Editor’s Note: ‘Peeling Back the Daytime Sky’

    The solar eclipse from a skywatcher’s perspective. Many of us are gearing up for a couple-hours-worth of cosmic cover-up on April 8, when a total solar eclipse will pass over North America. Totality will be visible in a swath across the middle of the U.S., with the path of totality entering the U.S. in Texas […]

  • The Pulse of Philanthropy: Women, Girls, and Charitable Giving

    Fifteen years ago, I found myself sitting at Door County Coffee with Jane Stevenson, Sue Todey, and the late BJ Cassidy discussing the status of women and girls in Door County. In the succeeding months, Sherry Mutchler, Barb Perloff, and Orlaine Gabert would join us as we collectively poured over statistics, looked at benchmarking data, […]

  • Season Launch Party At TAP

    Third Avenue PlayWorks (TAP) will ring in its 2024 season with a season-launch party on April 7, 5-7 pm. Guests can enjoy hors d’oeuvres and learn about this year’s lineup of shows, artists, directors and community partners at TAP.  Space is limited. Visit or call 920.743.1760 to reserve a spot.  The party will be […]

  • Dueling Piano Dinner Show

    Piano duo NEW Dueling Pianos will present a dinner show at Door County Gala on April 6, 6 pm. The hilarious, interactive dinner show is driven by audience requests and covers a plethora of musical genres. Tickets cost $70 and include a buffet meal. Guests can buy 10 tickets for the price of nine. Visit […]

  • Award Winning Mead

    Blood and Honey – a mead produced by Hatch Distilling Co.’s craft meadery and winery, Mixed Meadia – placed third in its category at the Mazer Cup Mead Competition. The annual competition attracts top-tier meaderies from around the world. Blood and Honey mead is a blend of 100% local ingredients including wildflower honey,  Montmorency tart […]

  • Taps At Sway Are Flowing Again

    The taproom at Sway Brewing + Blending has reopened after a brief winter break. A gravity cask of their dark lager – Where the Dark Wind Whirls – has been tapped and will be available along with several of their signature brews. Current taproom hours are Thursday–Saturday from 12-7 pm. Through April, Savor BBQ CO […]

  • Field Trips Double as Conservation Fundraisers

    Foundation opens registration for 10 Door County events The Natural Resources Foundation (NRF) of Wisconsin has 275 field trips planned statewide this year – including 10 that will bring conservation-minded people to Door County. The field trips, ranging from a couple of hours to all day, also serve as fundraisers for NRF and other conservation […]

  • Prep Baseball Teams Prepare for 2024 Season

    Weather permitting, Door County’s four Packerland Conference baseball teams are scheduled to take to the field next week for another season. The following season previews are in the order the teams finished last year in the conference. Eagles to Battle for Conference Title After finishing second in the Packerland last season and losing only in […]

  • Land Trust Stewards Prepare For Season Of Work

    Veteran and novice preserve stewards gathered March 15 to share their experience, their reasons for volunteering, and to learn what’s ahead for 2024.  Door County Land Trust staff discussed expectations of the volunteer position and revealed new technology that will aid the stewards in their monitoring of protected lands. Representatives of the U.S. Fish and […]

  • Crossroads Invites Potential Volunteers To Breakfast

    Habitat Healers has been an ongoing volunteer effort at Crossroads at Big Creek for many years. At 8:30 am Saturday, March 30, longtime Healers and potential volunteers can join in a breakfast (cherry-stuffed French toast courtesy of our volunteers) and discuss plans, changes and details for Habitat Healers in the 2024 season. For more information […]

  • Ridges Hosts Crane Symposium For Second Time

    Registration is now open for The Ridges Sanctuary’s Crane Symposium, April 12-14. This is the second year for the symposium, and a host of events are geared to all ages. Today, Wisconsin’s sandhill crane population is estimated at 60,000-70,000. Whooping cranes have experienced a slower recovery with only 71 accounted for in Wisconsin, two in […]

  • Wild Things: Sturgeon Bay Guide Just Misses 300K Payday

    Sturgeon Bay fishing guide and professional angler Adam Rasmussen hooked a $50,000 payday last weekend, landing second place in the Bassmaster Classic in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Fishing on Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees, Rasmussen’s three-day total on 15 largemouth bass – five were allowed daily – was 55 pounds, four ounces, nearly five pounds ahead of […]

  • Listen Up!

    Looking for something to do this weekend? Here are some ideas! Cool Bay Jazz March 31, 5-7 pm, Drömhus, 611 Jefferson St. in Sturgeon Bay Local musicians Dennis Keith Johnson, John Lewis, Tim Fox and Bill Knipfer play a cozy set. Photo from Drömhus’ Facebook page.  GET CRAFTY  Watercolor Class March 30, 1-4 pm, ARTicipation […]

  • School Leaders: Increase Special Education Funding Rate

    Door County school administrators echo the assertion by the governor and state superintendent that Wisconsin needs to better cover special-education costs. Southern Door County Schools Interim Superintendent Tony Klaubauf, Sturgeon Bay Business Manager Jacob Holtz, Gibraltar Schools Superintendent Brett Stousland and Sevastopol superintendent Kyle Luedtke all say Wisconsin needs to increase funding for special education.  […]

  • Server of the Week: Tiffany Johnson, AC Tap

    Tiffany’s smiling as the regulars unwind. They’re swapping local news and feeling mighty fine.  She’s a Green Bay native, spent some time out west. Colorado was OK, but Wisconsin’s her nest. Fantasy football, a major obsession. Don’t like the Pack? You’ll face quick ejection. Married to a rocker – he’s in the Mink River Ramblers. […]

  • Council Rezones Two Lots In Prep For Two New Developments

    The Sturgeon Bay Common Council gave final approval March 19, to a couple of rezonings, one where boat-house motor condos will be built, the other where a drive-thru coffee shop is proposed. The first rezoning – where the construction of 15 part residential/part storage condominiums has been proposed – is a vacant, triangular-shaped parcel at […]

  • Book Recommendation: “Starter Villain” by John Scalzi

    Recommended by DOMINIC FRANDRUP, Door County Library Director Charlie’s estranged uncle made millions in the parking garage business before his unexpected death. Now all Charlie has to do to inherit those millions is to attend his uncle’s wake. He’ll don his only suit and his too-small dress shoes and shake hands with the mourners – […]

  • PenArt Spotlights Past Artists-in-Residence

    Peninsula School of Art (PenArt) is celebrating participants in its residency program with a new exhibit titled Time and Space: A Survey of Artists-in-Residence. Launched in winter 2022, PenArt’s residency program gives artists time and space to immerse themselves fully into their creative practices and pursue new projects and ideas – hence the name of […]

  • Police Want to Drop ‘Antiquated’ Residency Requirement

    Sturgeon Bay Police Department is down four officers; Interim Fire Chief wouldn’t support removal of residency requirement for firefighters Sturgeon Bay’s police officers would no longer have to reside within 15 miles of any city limit under a recommendation backed Monday by the city’s Personnel Committee. Repealing that residency requirement, which is now effective six […]

  • Voting With New Maps

    When voters head to the polls in November they will vote within legislative districts that have been redrawn based upon a bipartisan agreement reached earlier this year by the Legislature and the Governor.  The changes do not impact Door County voters, who vote in District 1, as can be seen in comparative maps prepared  by […]

  • Need-to-Know Info for Your April 2 Vote

    Plus: Gallagher resigns and Jacque’s response In-person, absentee voting began Tuesday, March 19, and Election Day is Tuesday, April 2, for the local Spring Election and Presidential Preference vote. Elections are being held for the County of Door; the City of Sturgeon Bay; the towns of Baileys Harbor, Egg Harbor, Gardner, Gibraltar, Liberty Grove, Nasewaupee, […]

  • The Great Lakes Shipping Season Begins

    The Joseph L. Block, which spent winter layup in Sturgeon Bay at Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding, earned the distinction of being the first freighter to go through the Poe Lock in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, to mark the beginning of the 2024 Great Lakes shipping season. The Soo Locks – which connect Lakes Superior and Huron […]

  • Ruby’s Revival: James is Back as a Solo Artist

    Sturgeon Bay songstress Ruby James isn’t afraid of being afraid. Fear is a feeling the Americana-inspired artist embraces as she makes her return to the stage. “I’m all up for doing things that scare the s#%* out of me,” James said. That includes playing shows at big-name Door County venues after putting her solo sets […]

  • Egg Harbor Urges People To Order Trees

    The Village of Egg Harbor, with help from the Climate Change Coalition, urges people to order trees, participate in The Big Plant and help meet a goal of planting 10,000 trees this spring.  The deadline to order two-year-old trees in trays of 18 (for $54) is April 1. Tree varieties include balsam fir, red pine, […]

  • Raise A Natural-Resources Voice Through Conservation Congress

    The annual spring Conservation Congress advisory meetings allow all citizens to vote on questions involving Wisconsin’s natural resources – and it’s not just for those who hunt and fish, as Tim Eisele, writing for The Prairie Enthusiasts (, reminded people. “Natural resources belong to everyone and everyone in Wisconsin can vote on all of the […]

  • Video Available On Motus Animal-Tracking

    For months now, the Lake Michigan Bird Observatory’s Motus Tracking System antennas on properties of the Door County Land Trust, The Ridges Sanctuary and Crossroads at Big Creek have been tracking some of the smallest migratory animals along the lake. The Land Trust’s Community Conservation Coordinator, Paige Witek, hosted a program March 6 to discuss […]

  • Seed Library Program Reopened

    Door County’s Seed Library program kicked off its sixth year on Monday at all eight Door County Library branches. The Door County Seed Library is a community resource of gardening education and free vegetable, herb, and flower seeds that members can “check out” to plant at home. For a membership and Seedy Inspirations newsletter, visit […]

  • PPF Farm Group Shares Regenerative Strategies

    In front of more than 80 farmers, industry partners and community members at the nonprofit organization’s annual meeting this winter, Peninsula Pride Farms (PPF) shared information on new regenerative strategies for farms and farmland. PPF is a nonprofit organization of dairy farmers, crop farmers and corporate members committed to protecting and improving ground and surface […]

  • Open Door Pride Chair Meets With Governor

    Open Door Pride’s chair and founder, Cathy Grier, was invited to attend a reception at the governor’s residence March 21 in honor of Women’s History Month. Governor Evers and First Lady Kathy Evers have been longtime advocates of the LGBTQIA+ community. Governor Evers was the first governor to fly the pride flag at the capitol […]

  • A Celebration Of Public Health Week

    Door County Health Department will have snacks, prizes and giveaways during a Public Health Week Open House. Visitors can meet the staff members and learn more about the programs and services the department provides. The event will be Wednesday, April 3 in the first-floor office in the Door County Government Center, 421 Nebraska St., Sturgeon […]

  • Disability And Transition Resource Fair

    Parents and guardians of young people with disabilities who are finishing high school are asked to register by April 11 for the Disability and Transition Resource Fair. The event will be 1-3 pm and 4-6 pm Thursday, April 18, at We Are Hope Inc. in Cherry Valley Mall. Approximately 20 organizations, government entities and businesses […]

  • DCHS Featured Pet: Cristobal

    Meet Cristobal, a 4-year-old, 10-pound cat available for adoption at the Wisconsin Humane Society Door County Campus. This beautiful longhair mix will steal your heart and be your family’s best fur friend. He will, however, be most comfortable if he’s the only cat in the family. Like all cats at WHS, he is neutered, vaccinated […]

  • April Crafts At The Library

    This April, patrons can craft their way into spring at their local library. At the Egg Harbor Library, patrons can drop into the Maker Space to create a unique canvas book bag using a Cricut machine, a cutting and crafting tool. Children under 12 need adult assistance for this craft.  In the library’s Children’s Room, […]

  • Gallery Night, Murder-Mystery Show At Drömhus

    Sturgeon Bay eatery and event venue Drömhus will host a gallery night featuring the work of painter Sarah Jane Keiser on April 5, 6-8 pm.  A Wisconsin native, Keiser was raised in a family of woodcarvers and outdoorsmen, with both art and nature serving as central tenets of her upbringing. She now splits her time […]

  • On Exhibit

    Precious Life: Photography by Jeff Pearcy Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Door County, 10341 Water St. (Hwy 42) in Ephraim Through March This exhibit is the result of eight years photographer Jeff Pearcy spent with the Pan-African Rural Health and Social Services, documenting people in poverty. Miller Art Museum Exhibits Miller Art Museum, 107 S. 4th […]

  • Therapy dog

    Reading Types

    My partner and I are reading a book series together, and when we first started, it made me feel like I was illiterate.  I own the books, so I’m reading them first, then passing each one off to my partner when I finish it. I typically take a couple of weeks to get through a […]

  • Door County Libraries Closed April 1

    All Door County Library locations will be closed April 1 for staff training. Items due on April 1 will be extended to April 2, when normal hours will resume.

  • DNR Poetry Contest For Elementary Students

    The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is now accepting entries from third through fifth graders for its Air, Air, Everywhere poetry contest. Now in its 13th year, the annual DNR-sponsored contest is designed to raise awareness for the importance of air quality during Clean Air Month in May. The DNR encourages teachers and parents […]

  • Bestsellers for the week ended March 17.

    HARDCOVER FICTION 1. The Women, by Kristin Hannah 2. Wandering Stars, by Tommy Orange 3. North Woods, by Daniel Mason 4. Until August, by Gabriel García Márquez, Anne McLean (Transl.) 5. The Hunter, by Tana French HARDCOVER NONFICTION 1. Reading Genesis, by Marilynne Robinson 2. The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder, by […]

  • Sturgeon Bay Salutes Educators, Staff, Retirees

    Educators and staff members who are retiring this year – as well as outgoing school board member Roger Wood – were guests of honor, along with their families, at the Sturgeon Bay school board meeting March 20. Staff retirees include Todd Meikle, who has served as athletic director, coach and grade school and high school […]

  • Sevastopol Finds Teacher To Fill Carlson’s AG Spot

    Sevastopol school board on March 20 hired Ann Glowacki to take over the agriculture, greenhouse and FFA program Dale Carlson led for 32 years. Carlson is retiring this year with four decades of teaching experience in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Glowacki will come to Sevastopol after eight years as the agriculture teacher at Southern Door School […]

  • Students Advance To State From Music Fest

    Door County soloists and ensemble members advanced to the state meet from the Wisconsin School Music Association (WSMA) District Solo and Ensemble Music Festivals at Gibraltar Area School and the additional festival at Sturgeon Bay. Judges from throughout the region adjudicated the students’ performances and provided encouragement and instruction. At the Sturgeon Bay event, Southern […]

  • Southern Door Second-Semester Honor Rolls

    Middle School Grade 6 High Honors – Cameron Bouche, Evan Brey, Avery Delwiche, Jillayna Fameree, Amber Geisel, Evelynne Jeanquart, Natalie Kain, Bentley Kiehnau, Mila LeRoy, Avarie Miller, Carrera Mixa, Charli Mixa, Mayleigh Severinsen, Ashlyn Sixel, Sawyer Soukup, Gabrielle Spude. Grade 6 Honors – Roman Burns, Savannah Herbst, Logan Kaser,  Parker La Crosse, Jonah LeFevre, Ember […]

  • A Puzzle Solved

    A few months ago we started to get emails about our crossword from some unhappy puzzlers.  “It’s impossible!” one person wrote.  I thought that person was a bit hysterical and maybe just frustrated. But then more complaints trickled in. I kept making notes to myself to try it and see if it really was too […]

  • Sturgeon Bay Home Added to Historic Register

    Briefly-used exterior material gives Soper House significance The Dr. Joseph and Olivia Soper House in Sturgeon Bay was added to the State Register of Historic Places this month – laying the groundwork for a listing on the National Register of Historic Places, the house owner said. The next steps, say owners Rebecca Carlton and Tony […]

  • Author Shares How To Turn Family History Into Children’s Stories

    Looking to share your family history with the young ones in the family, or to share the stories with a broader audience? Mequon resident and children’s book author Deborah Lakritz will lead a class, “Turning Family Histories into Children’s Stories,” on Tuesday, April 2 from 10:30 am to noon at Write On, Door County. The […]

  • Birthday Girl Builds Tradition of Giving

    7-year-old gives 28 cake kits to others on her birthday Katelyn Much, a 7-year-old St. John Bosco Catholic School student, has built a birthday tradition of giving to others. On March 22, the first-grader delivered 14 cake-making kits to Help of Door County. and 14 more to St. Vincent de Paul/St. Joseph Conference, which schedules […]

  • Caring for the Caregiver

    How to know when it’s time to share the load by CYNTHIA GERMAIN [email protected]  Caregiving can be rewarding, but physically and emotionally demanding at the same time. Whether you’re taking care of an aging parent, a spouse with a chronic illness or a disabled family member, there may come a time when you need extra […]

  • Fishstock Reels In 10 Artists for 2024 Season

    While folk is the focus of the annual Fishstock concert series, genres from jazz to bluegrass to Dixieland are represented in this year’s 10-show lineup as well. Each concert begins at 7 pm at the Fishstock Concert Barn, 3127 Cty F in Fish Creek, with pre-show music starting at 5:30. General-admission tickets will be available […]

  • Anne Hills And Jeanne Kuhns Play Kick Ash

    Contemporary folk singer Anne Hills and local singer-songwriter Jeanne Kuhns will perform together at Kick Ash Coffee in Ellison Bay, April 6 at 7 pm. Accompanied with her guitar, banjo or simply a Tibetan bell, Hills puts her heart and soul into her performances. Her song Follow That Road has been a folk classic since […]

  • Railroad Bridge The Topic Of Maritime Speech

    “Bridging the Gap: The History of the Sturgeon Bay Railroad Bridge,” will be the topic of the 7 pm Thursday, April 4 Maritime Speaker Series program. Daniel Liedtke from the National Railroad Museum will speak at the program on the second floor of the Door County Maritime Museum. There’s no cost to attend, but there […]

  • In the Wake of the Baltimore Ship-Bridge Collision, a Local Captain’s Perspective

    Editor’s note: The Singapore-flagged, 948-foot container ship, the Dali, crashed into a 1.6-mile bridge in Baltimore, Maryland on March 26, at 1:28 am, causing a portion of the Francis Scott Key, four-lane suspension bridge to collapse. People plunged into the Patapsco River below.. A construction crew was fixing potholes on the bridge and eight people […]

  • Door County Easter Hoppenings

    As the days get longer and the weather gets warmer, it’s time to defrost and hop into spring. Here’s what’s happening around the county this Easter.  Easter Egg Hunts Sturgeon Bay Family Worship Center, 1715 Michigan St.March 30, 10-11:15 am Worship songs and an Easter message will accompany an egg hunt and prize giveaways.  Brussels Brussels […]