Ken Krall

News Director

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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.

Wisconsin DNR

A master plan for nearly 3,600 acres of recreational land west of Rhinelander has been finished and the public is being asked to comment.

A public meeting on the Woodboro Lakes Wildlife Area will be held Thursday, July 23 at 6 p.m. at the Northwoods Community Elementary School in Harshaw.

DNR planner Yoyi Steele says they've been working on the draft master plan since early this year. She says the plan emphasizes management of common trees like oak and aspen and continuing with traditional recreational pursuits like hunting. But one aspect is a proposed ATV trail...

Rhinelander voters will have another chance to decide on the Premier Area Resort Tax. Governor Walker did not veto the measure placed in the recently-signed two-year budget package.

If a community is designated as a Premier Resort Tax area, a sales tax is collected to be used for infrastructure improvements only. The tax was requested because high-tourist traffic communities see greater wear on their roads and public utilities. It was estimated more than 60 percent of the revenue generated would come from visitors.

A rare, but potentially fatal disease causes officials to take action when reported.

Public Health Nurse for  Oneida County, Char Ahrens, says rabies is a concern this time of year. The viral disease is transmitted mainly from one mammal to another. While the wide majority of rabies cases are wild animal transmissions, a dog or cat bite will require the quantining of the animal to see if they develop rabies.

Ahrens says pet owners should know that animal bites lead to the animal being quarantined...

You might have a curious plant in your yard or something by your lake home which looks wierd. Several Northwoods agencies are hosting an Invasive Species ID Day at various locations.

Vilas County Invasive Species Coordinator Cathy Higley says the public can bring in anything to be examined by an invasive species specialist...

"....if you're wondering, 'what is this?', you can bring it to one of those locations. We'll help ID it and give some background information on how it can affect your property or your lake...."

The second Kwik-Trip store in Rhinelander is closer to reality.

The city council last night approved a certified survey map for 1539 North Stevens Street and 1512 Eagle Street as outlined by Mayor Dick Johns...

"...motion has been made and seconded to approve. Any further questions or comments in regards to this issue?"

It was a bit of political "Back To The Future", as former U.S. Senator and once-again-candidate Russ Feingold stopped in Rhinelander Monday.

Feingold recently announced his intent to try get his old job back. Republican Ron Johnson defeated Feingold in 2010.

The news

Monday was Republican Governor Scott Walker announcing plans to run for the Presidency. Democrat Feingold thinks Walker's efforts in Wisconsin are not usual for a candidate hoping to build on a record...

Invasive Faucet snails have been discovered in Elton Creek in Langlade county and the DNR hopes stream users help keep the critter from spreading.

DNR Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator Bob Wakeman say the Faucet snails out-compete native snails. While some people might think this is a small problem, Wakeman says the snails could mean bigger problems for other species...


A large fiberglass tank will cause some power outages Tuesday and Thursday in the Northwoods.

Wisconsin Public Service reports the tank is being shipped from Wisconsin Rapids to Saskatchewan, Canada. The shipping route winds north and will enter the WPS service area near Antigo with an arrival time at 5 p.m. Tuesday in Eagle River.

Leah Van Zile from WPS says electric crews will be going along with the very slow moving transport. They need to move power lines...

The tools to put in a cutting edge computer and production facility in more Wisconsin schools has been funded in the recently-concluded state budget.

The Joint Finance Committee included $500,000 to let qualifying school districts buy equipment for FAB LABS. Don Sidlowski is a citizen activist hoping to bring the Labs to many Northwoods schools. He says schools boards were interested in the labs, but the $50,000 capital equipment money was daunting.

A Northwoods county treasurer is reminding property taxpayers the second installment of their payments are due by the end of the month. Changes in the U.S. Post Office might have something to do with it.

Property owners are given the option to pay those taxes in two payments, but the payment must be received by the county no later than July 31.

Oneida County Treasurer Kris Ostermann says many people wait until the last minute to pay, but they have to consider the U.S. Mail isn't moving at the speed it once did...

So far no reported cases of West Nile Virus in the Northwoods.

It's  an infection spread to  people by the bite of a mosquito infected with the virus.   Mosquitoes get infected with West Nile virus by  feeding on infected birds. The first human case of West Nile happened in Wisconsin was reported in 2002.

Char Ahrens from Oneida County Public Health says while the disease has been in the Northwoods in prior years...

" far we have no reported cases of West Nile Virus activity in Oneida or surrounding counties...."

Visitors to Northwoods beaches are cautioned to be aware of the annual 'swimmers itch' you can get while splashing in the water.

Maria Skubal of  the Oneida County Health Department says its caused by a microscopic parasite that if it finds a human will attach to the skin. It causes an intense burning or itching sensation. She says avoid areas where geese, gulls or ducks frequent or marshy areas...

A 17 year old man from Cascade, Wi. was found dead in a Vilas County lake Thursday.

The Sheriff's Department says  Edward Niedzialkowski was reported missing near Rummels Road and Donlo Lane in the town of Conover Wednesday evening.  Friends and family were looking for the young man for three hours prior to calling for help.

Emergency responders were joined by Lac du Flambeau Tribal Police K9 unit and a DNR aircraft in the search.

Shortly after 9 a.m. Thursday, Niedzialkowski was located in Deer Lake.  Authorities say the cause of death is undetermined.

Rhinelander Republican Rob Swearingen went along with the majority in the Assembly late Wednesday,  sending to Governor Walker the biennial budget to consider.

 Swearingen says portions of the bill reflect the work he did as chair of a Task Force on rural schools...

School of the Arts returns to Rhinelander July 17. Each year the Northwoods chapter of the American Association of University Women hold a book sale to raise money to help pay for education.

AAUW spokesperson Joan Belongia  talks about the sale...

"....proceeds go toward area scholarships. I know we have five local people receiving scholarships. We're really for advancing equity for women and girls...."