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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Road Hazard
4:00 am
Sun September 29, 2013

Moose Appears in Rhinelander

The moose pictured above is not the one spotted in Rhinelander.
Credit Denali National Park and Preserve

Drivers may need to look out for more than just deer.  

A moose has been spotted in Rhinelander.  City Police officer Chad Brown says it was spotted by a resident about a week ago.  Responding to the call Brown tailed the moose in his squad car. He filmed the moose for several minutes.  Brown says a moose can do a lot of damage if it collides with a car.

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Practicing For An Emergency
5:40 pm
Fri September 27, 2013

Emergency Managers Test the Water

Rhinelander emergency managers will be testing their ability to get water to the site of a large fire. 

Saturday officials will be testing a response system called Mutual Aid Box Alarm system or MABAS. Oneida County Emergency Management Director Ken Kortenhof says fire department crews will gather at the Rhinelander Airport.

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What A Way to Travel
5:15 pm
Fri September 27, 2013

Car Meets Hot Dog

"Atta Dog Alex" peeks her head through the sunroof of the Wienermobile.
Credit Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

The Wienermobile has arrived in the Northwoods.  

The Madison-based Oscar Meyer sends a small bus shaped like a hot dog on trips around the country.  There are two so-called hot doggers in charge of the wiener-mobile…their aliases are Atta Dog Alex and Sizzlin’ Steve.  Both in their early twenties, they say their day is spent traveling and visiting different events. 

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Healthcare Burden May Fall On Counties
12:10 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

Counties Vote Against Walker's Medicaid Expansion Denial

The Wisconsin Counties Association voted this week in disapproval of the state’s rejection of extra federal funding for Medicaid.  Sarah Diedrick-Kasdorf, Senior Legislative Associate for Wisconsin Counties Association, says the vote reaffirmed a position the group has held since 2011.

“As counties, when we all have the same position, when we all talk from one voice, it really provides support for our issues.”

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An Experimental Approach
4:00 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Kovac's Universal Dream

A gravel lane leads to the Kovac Planetarium in Monaco, Wisconsin.
Credit Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

If you’ve ever felt the urge to do something other than what’s expected of you, this story is for you.  Frank Kovac worked a factory job by day, but nurtured a passion for astronomy at night.  This is the story of a cloudy night, some glow in the dark paint, and a universal dream.

Driving down Mud Creek Road in Monaco Wisconsin, you might think you’re headed to a campground.  But in fact the gravel lane leads to Frank Kovac’s hand-made planetarium.

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Asking for More Logs
6:01 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Too Little Logging For Lumber?

Local sawmills argue there aren't enough logs being harvested in northern Wisconsin.
Credit Mike Belch

Some lumber mills in northern Wisconsin say low timber harvests from the Chequamegon Nicolet National Forest are jeopardizing their businesses.  

Sue Pukall of Arbor Vitae’s Pukall Lumber says the company is sometimes forced to buy logs hauled from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, which costs about $200 extra per truckload.

“Ideally we should be able to source all the logs that we need within a 50-75 mile radius of our mill.  So when we have to go up into the UP, that’s obviously a lot further than 75 miles.”

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Investigation Still In Progress
6:41 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Missing Woman's Remains Found; Cause of Death TBD

Vilas County authorities are still waiting to determine cause of death for a woman whose remains were found in the woods last week. 55-year-old Sandra Schinke of Sayner went missing in 17 months ago in the Northern Highland Forest.  Vilas County Sheriff Joe Fath says forensic evidence helped make the positive ID.

“The teeth were intact in the jaw at the scene as part of the remains.  So we utilized a forensic anthropologist and dental records that we had obtained from Mr. Schinke when his wife went missing.”

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Water Worries
6:38 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Well Drilling Regulations Up for Committee Hearing

A proposed state Senate bill would change the approval process for commercial wells.
Credit Klimek Bros Well Drilling

A bill limiting the DNR’s power over high capacity wells is up for a hearing in a Senate committee Wednesday.  

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Public Access Controversy
6:00 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Managed Forest Exception Tabled For Now, But Still In the Works

Credit Mark Sadowski

A state lawmaker says he’ll keep working on a bill that would allow Gogebic Taconite to restrict public access to the site of a proposed iron mine.  Right now the area is open to public recreation under the managed forest program.  

After pulling the legislation from the Senate calendar, Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst says he’ll make revisions in hopes of getting the votes he needs.

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A Pesky Problem
4:00 am
Sun September 22, 2013

Mosquito Madness, Even in Autumn?

Wisconsin is home to more than 50 varieties of mosquito.
Credit E. A. Goeldi

Despite several nights of frost in the past week, some Northern Wisconsin residents are still plagued by the telltale buzz of mosquitoes.  How does a mosquito survive in cold temperatures?

Common knowledge holds that once nighttime temperatures dip into the 30s, mosquito populations drop off.  But that didn’t seem to be happening last week.  Susan Paskewitz, a mosquito expert at the University of Wisconsin Madison, says it’s possible most of the still-active mosquitoes are newly formed.

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