Natalie Jablonski

Community Features Editor

Natalie came to the station in 2013.  She moved to the Northwoods from Providence, Rhode Island where she worked at Rhode Island Public Radio.  She studied Environmental Studies at Brown University, and learned radio production at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies. 

As Community Features Editor, Natalie spends time reporting, interviewing, and working with volunteer contributors.  She also hosts All Things Considered on Friday afternoons. 

When she's not rushing to and from an interview, she enjoys cooking, eating, playing music, and skiing to survive the winter.

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Exposure in the Midwest
1:00 pm
Sun May 11, 2014

Milwaukee Public TV Program to Focus on Rhinelander

Rhinelander is set to have its moment in the spotlight on Milwaukee Public Television.

The city has been selected for an episode of the show Around The Corner, hosted by John McGivern.  It’s a weekly half hour segment on public tv that focuses on living and working in different communities around Wisconsin. 

Rhinelander Chamber of Commerce Director Dana DeMet says he hopes it will attract attention for the Rhinelander area.

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Sheriff's Second-In-Command
5:14 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

New Chief Deputy Selected for Oneida County

The Oneida County Sheriff’s office has a new chief deputy.  Sheriff Grady Hartman announced today that he has selected Lieutenant Daniel Hess to fill the position.  It has been vacant since March when former Chief Deputy John Sweeney retired.  The Chief Deputy is second in command at the Sheriff’s office, and is in charge when the sheriff is absent. 

Ice Slowly Melting
4:21 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Northwoods Fishing Season Off to Slow Start

Credit David de la Luz / https://flic.kr/p/uX3Vq

Heading into the second weekend of fishing season, conditions look slightly more favorable than they did for the opener.

Mel’s Trading Post Owner Mitch Mode says more and more lakes are opening up.    

“Well things are looking better, we’ve had some warm weather this week, we’ve had some rain.  Rain certainly helps break up the ice.  Warm weather starts to drive the water temperature up, and everything comes around water temperature.”

That temperature affects fish spawning cycles, and that affects what fish do and where they can be found. 

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Speakers and Field Trips
5:39 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Looking and Learning: Birding Festival This Weekend

Evening grosbeaks
Credit Alan Huett

A birding festival this weekend gets people out and about to Northwoods birding spots.

The North Lakeland Discovery Center in Manitowish Waters hosts the Northwoods Birding Festival this weekend.

Discovery Center Research and Monitoring Coordinator Heather Lumpkin says it aims to engage birders of all levels. 

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Tapping Trees in Merrill
4:00 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Technology Meets Mystery in Maple Sugar Season

Natalie Jablonski WXPR News

Maple syrup production in northern Wisconsin is wrapping up for the season.  For small producers a fickle weather pattern meant it wasn’t a great season in terms of syrup quantity.  But for larger producers who use more high-tech systems, it was still an above average year.  And the reasons behind these sap dynamics are still somewhat of a mystery. 

The day I visit Maple Hollow Farm near Merrill Wisconsin is muddy and cool – a typical backdrop for a process that takes place only in spring, when the sap is running. 

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Lots of water
1:00 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Flowage Levels Close to Maximum

Lots of water is passing through dams, as the Wisconsin Valley Improvement Company opens the gates of the Rainbow and Willow Flowages.
Credit Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

Wisconsin River levels are high in the Rhinelander area, thanks to rain and snow melt.  Water is being released from flowages as they near their maximum levels. 

The Wisconsin Valley Improvement Company controls most dams and water levels on the Wisconsin River.  Operations Manager Peter Hansen says the company is releasing a lot of water from the Rainbow Flowage…which is close to its maximum level.

“We have a maximum elevation that we must not allow it to go over, so we have the gates open and the water level is coming down slowly on a daily basis now.” 

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Concern Over White Pines
5:43 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Torpy Park Controversy Prompts Town Meeting

A special town hall meeting is taking place Tuesday evening in Minocqua, regarding the fate of a group of trees in Torpy Park. 

The Minocqua Lions Club wants to build a new shelter in Torpy Park, and in the process remove about a dozen white pines estimated to be over a hundred years old. 

Many locals are up in arms about the plan, and have been contacting town officials and spreading the word through social media.  They say they like the atmosphere the trees provide, and say the trees are a vestige of old growth forest in the Northwoods. 

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Facing Stiff Competition
5:40 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Mock Trial Team Heads to Nationals

The Rhinelander Mock trial team has been pulling long hours of preparation before the national tournament.
Credit Submitted photo

The Rhinelander Mock Trial team heads to Madison Wednesday to compete with high school teams from around the country.

Faculty coach Kathy Vick Martini says preparing for the national tournament is a grueling process…because the team has only five weeks to prepare its case.   

“The kids basically have to sacrifice everything else that they do for this month and a half to prepare for the national tournament, and to their credit they’ve been working very hard, and they’ve done well.” 

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Quest for Habitable Planets
4:00 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Antigo Astronomer Searches for Signs of Distant Life

Globular cluster Terzan 7 is on the other side of our galaxy.
Credit NASA / https://flic.kr/p/jXLDrB

Maggie Turnbull lives in Antigo and works as a freelance astrobiologist.  

  It’s the study of the origin and future of life in the universe.  Turnbull has gained international recognition for her work cataloging star systems that could support life, and is now working with NASA on a telescope to better look at those systems.  WXPR’s Natalie Jablonski spoke with Turnbull over the phone.  

She says the problem is that stars give out so much light, it’s hard to even see the planets that orbit them. 

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Cash taken from business
6:11 pm
Mon May 5, 2014

Minocqua Police Respond to Theft

Minocqua police are working to identify two suspects involved in a theft Monday.  Officers responded to a theft from Kurt’s Island sport shop.  The suspect or suspects are reported to have walked into the business office, opened a drawer where cash was kept, stole $1500 and walked out of the business after talking with employees.  The Minocqua Police Department is following up on several leads and is asking for anyone with information to come forward.  

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