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.

Swearingen Likes State Budget; Senate Passes Budget

Sep 15, 2017

A Northwoods Republican says overall he's pleased with the Assembly-passed $76 billion state budget bill, saying it has good news for the north.

Republican Rob Swearingen of Rhinelander says he thinks the Northwoods got some money for key areas...

"one of the things I'm most happy about is the amount of money we're putting back into education, over $600 million dollars. High cost transportation aid is in that budget. I'm also excited there's additional money for FAB LABS as well as additional $14 million for broadband in this budget...."

Attorney General Brad Schimel announced Thursday the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation Human Trafficking Bureau agents, with the aid of local and federal law enforcement, have arrested 25 individuals in stings to arrest sex traffickers, “johns,” and child abusers in July and August 2017.

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The state's Superintendent of Public Instruction has joined a growing list of Democrats who are running for Governor.

Tony Evers stopped by the WXPR studios this week and talked with News Director Ken Krall...

This week is National Suicide Prevention Week, a week set aside to bring awareness about suicide and to help those facing a crisis. Suicide affects one in five American families.

Carrie Breitenfeldt of Antigo is a Wisconsin Chapter Board member for the American Foundation For Suicide Prevention. She also chairs an event held September 9 in Antigo called the "Out of Darkness" community walk.

Breitenfeldt says there are warning signs that a person might be thinking about taking their life..

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Thousands of motorcycles are arriving in Tomahawk and the Northwoods this weekend, as the Muscular Dystrophy Association's Fall Ride is underway.

Bri Lodel is the Executive Director for the Green Bay MDA office. The event is held in Tomahawk which has a Harley-Davidson production facility and the Milwaukee-based motorcycle firm has been a long-time MDA supporter. Lodel says the Fall Ride is the single largest fundraisers for MDA in the Northwoods. She says the money services Northwoods families that are battling a neuromuscular disease.

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Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch has put out an invitation for Northwoods businesses to attend the one-day Governor's Small Business Summit later this month in Rothschild.

Kleefisch says the day will show small business owners how to get resources like social media to help them including legal help.

The state cabinet members will be there along with Governor Scott Walker...

U.S. Forest Service

2017 is being remembered as one of the worst fire seasons in the western U.S. in recent memory.

43 Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest workers are helping to fight wildfires in western states. Chequamegon-Nicolet personnel are supporting efforts in Montana, Oregon, Nevada, California, South Dakota and Washington.

Forest spokesperson Hilary Markin says the people come from a variety of departments...

Hometown Trolley

The Forest County Board Tuesday approved giving or selling a portion of land at the fairgrounds in Crandon to Hometown Trolley to make way for the company to expand.

WJFW TV reports the company has a plan to expand, but needed the space to make it happen. After considerable discussion, the Forest County Board approved the land deal. A question arose that if the county sells part of the fairgrounds the deed states that comparable facilities needs to be found if the transaction lasts more than 20 years. A committee was formed to work on fair options.

Mike McCabe-Twitter

Earlier this week another candidate entered the race for Governor, a political outsider who will run as a Democrat.

Mike McCabe spent 15 years working for campaign and political reform with the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign. He later founded "Blue Jean Nation", a grassroots political organization designed to reform government. He announced his intention this week at the family farm in Clark county that he was running for Governor.

He says the public has to rise up and change what he calls a corrupt political system.

No injuries were reported after a gun was discharged Tuesday afternoon in the Town of Pelican.

The Oneida County Sheriff's Department reports shortly after 3:00 p.m. they were called to a residence after a man allegedly shot a firearm into a truck that was parked at a residence. The man then left the scene on an all terrain vehicle. Deputies later found the four-wheeler at a neighbors house. The suspect came out of the house and was taken into custody without incident.

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A Town of Newbold employee began a relief drive to get needed items for hurricane victims and take the supplies there.

T.J. Belunes said he would take his personal vehicle there with supplies to Texas or Florida.

Town Clerk Kim Gauthier says they've been in contact with relief agencies and details the type of donations they hope the public provides...

People heading out on Northwoods lakes and streams are likely not finding wild rice in abundance this season.

DNR wetland habitat specialist Jason Fleener says for the second year in a row, the wild rice crop is well below average...

"....last year was notably a poor season and this year is no different. In the Northwest(part of the state) in the Polk-Burnett-Washburn counties region wild rice is fairing a little bit better, but generally in the Northeast(part of the state) we're seeing some pretty poor crops this year...."