Ken Krall

News Director

Ken has been  News Director at WXPR since 2000. This is his second stint with the station, having served as Operations Manager and Morning Edition host from 1987-1995.

A 1976 graduate of UW-Stevens Point, he has served in a variety of roles in radio including sports play-by-play, sales, Program Director along with an extensive background in news. Ken has also worked as an assignment editor in a TV newsroom and as a city reporter for a local newspaper.

A passion of his is the WXPR Saturday morning polka show which he brought back to the air in 1989. He loves many styles of music, especially those that DON'T include a guitar.

A native of Antigo, he likes to birdwatch, fish and read and hopes to someday publish a book he's had in his computer for 15 years.

Ways To Connect

A polka band from Ohio is the subject of a new reality TV series debuting Saturday on the Reelz cable and satellite channel. The Chardon Polka Band is the subject of the show "Polka Kings", following the band across the nation. The band is made up of musicians not typical of a polka band. Leader Jake Kouwe comes from a punk background. The drummer was into heavy metal. But they all found a love for polka and that led them to national TV. Ken Krall talked with Jake about how he got into polka, then drummer Joe Dahlhausen...

U.S. Senate Urged To Pass CHIP Funding

Apr 9, 2015

Advocates are calling on the federal government to continue funding the Children's Health Insurance Program, or CHIP. The program is funded through Medicaid or, in Wisconsin Badgercare Plus. Money comes from both the federal and state coffers to fund the low-income health insurance program.

Funding for the program has passed the U.S. House, but has stalled in the U.S. Senate.

State Medicaid Director Kevin  Moore describes how the program works...

State Representative Mary Czaja of Irma thinks a model developed by Three Lakes could help northern school districts facing critical budget problems.

Three Lakes schools have opened a Fab Lab which is a public-private partnership as Czaja explains. It's a type of 3-D computer-based manufacturing. Czaja says the goal is to have a Fab Lab in every K-12 school in the 12th Senate District....

The DNR's Spring Fish and Wildlife Public Hearings happen Monday in all of Wisconsin's 72 counties.  One topic area  is likely to draw considerable discussion.

DNR fisheries biologist Jon Hansen says they're studying 100 lakes...many in this look at putting tighter restrictions on panfish to see if larger fish can be grown.....

"....we're interested in trying three different options for bag limits. We have an elaborate evaluation plan that we are going to evaluate over the next 10 years...".

Despite patches of snow on the ground, it is spring, and Eagle River’s Olson Memorial Library is celebrating the season on Saturday with the launch of its Seed Library. WXPR’s Emily Bright reports.


The next move will be up to legislators as Rhinelander residents Tuesday passed an advisory referendum concerning the Premier Resort Area Tax. The vote was about 2-1 in favor.

The tax would place a half-cent charge on a sale with all the proceeds designated for infrastructure repairs, mainly street repair. Eagle River has had a similar tax since 2006.

Because Rhinelander doesn't meet all the requirements up front, legislative approval is necessary.

Mayor Dick Johns says the city is prepared to move forward...

The state Natural Resources Board has implemented  a plan supporting a five year catch-and-release only walleye fishery on the Minocqua and Tomahawk chain of lakes. The plan was brought forward by Northwoods angling groups, community leaders and Chippewa tribal leaders with support from DNR as part of a plan to restore natural walleye reproduction. The Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa  agreed not to harvest these lakes during the rehabilitation plan.

Scammers are working the phones in the  Northwoods claiming to be from the IRS and wanting you to pay up or else. The Vilas County Sheriff's Department says do not give out personal information and simply hang up.

Callers claim to be from the IRS. Victims are told they owe money and it must be paid through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer. The caller ID is made to look like it is the IRS.

IRS officials say they will never make contact with citizens this way.

Voters in the Phelps, White Lake and Laona school districts all approved referendums to exceed spending limits. In the city of Rhinelander, an advisory question whether to adopt a half-of-one cent sales tax called a Premier Resort Area Tax passed by a 2-1 margin. In Tomahawk voters said no to a question about utility costs. In the town of Cassian a question about allowing ATV's on town roads passed, but in the Vilas county town of Cloverland, a similar question was rejected. A referendum question in Conover adding two supervisors passed.

Hibernation is ending for the Northwoods growing bear population, and conflicts with property owners can be avoided says a DNR spokesperson.

Wildlife damage specialist Brad Koele says the food you leave for birds and your pets also is tantalizing for bears...

"....garbage cans, grills, if anyone feeds pets outside coming to the pet food. Be aware, take a look around and reduce those attractants...."