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Northeast Wisconsin's local news coverage.

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  • 10/22/18--14:09: Lottery Fever Grows
  • MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - Mega Millions fever has swept the country with the jackpot reaching a record $1.6 billion dollars. That means local convenience stores are staffing accordingly for the lottery rush.

    With no winner in Friday night's drawing, the jackpot passed the previous record when the Powerball reached $1.5 billion in January of 2016. The next drawing is Tuesday night and tickets need to be purchased before 9 PM to be eligible.

    Steve Stannard of Kornelli's says they've needed extra bodies behind the counter.

    "We carry an extra person when these things get this big," says Stannard. "They get a lot of attention."

    And while the Mega Millions has received most of the attention, he says most people are splurging and doubling up their purchase.

    "With the Powerball and Mega Millions being up so high, everybody is kind of lumping them together," explains Stannard.

    The Powerball is currently up to $620 million and its next drawing is on Wednesday.

    The excitement has even extended to lottery rookies.

    "We're getting a lot of people that normally don't buy lottery tickets at all and they're coming in and buying tickets," he explains.

    For Stannard, lottery fever has even struck home.

    "My daughter was just in here the other day and bought $100 worth of Powerball and $100 worth of Mega Millions," he says.

    Officials remind those playing to sign your ticket and check it as soon as possible to avoid missing out on any prize you may have won.


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  • 10/22/18--14:13: Big Day For Brown County
  • BROWN COUNTY, WI (WTAQ) - Friday marks the 200th birthday for Brown County, and they are celebrating in a big way.

    The Birthday Bash includes cupcakes, performances, a laser light show, and a ceremonial beer pin tapping. 

    "Titletown Brewing Company along with Copper State Brewing made a brew for us to be able to tap that day."

    Brown County Executive Troy Streckebach says the two have collaborated to create a BiCentenniAle. Entertainment is just one goal of the day.

    Neville Public Museum Executive Director Beth Lemke says there is also plenty of opportunities to learn about Brown County History.

    "We have the exhibit which looks at 50 people, 50 places, 50 artifacts, and 50 photographs. 

    Lemke says that is the "Our Brown County" exhibit.

    "This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for us to be able to celebrate our long, rich history of what made Brown County what it is today," Streckenbach said.

    The day includes free cupcakes for the first 2,000 guests, free entry into the Museum, Historic entertainment by Frank Hermans (Let Me Be Frank Productions) as General Jacob Brown.

    The Birthday Bash is scheduled to take place in the Neville Museum Parking lot from 10:00 a.m to 7:00 p.m.

    The celebration also includes birthday cake judging, food trucks, and performances by the Oneida Tribe and Kaleidoscope Dance.

    Brown County was founded on Oct. 26, 1818.

     

     

     


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    ASHWAUBENON, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - For those looking for a move, there's some new waterfront property in Ashwaubenon that's available.

    The six-story, 78-unit Manseau Flats Apartment building held a ribbon cutting ceremony on Monday to commemorate the completion of the $8 million project.

    The building is located on the Fox River, just north of the expressway.

    “We wanted something when you came over that bridge you’re going to look at and go, ‘wow that’s cool, that’s a sweet-looking building’ and I think we were able to accomplish that,” says Ryan Bedford, executive vice president of Kendal Group.

    For Bedford and his company, this is their first venture in this area.

    “This is our first project to the Green Bay Market, but we knew we needed to provide a real high-level property to prospective tenants, we wanted something nice and clean,” he says.

    Research backs the notion that there's a demand for additional apartment living opportunities in the area.

    Mary Kardoskee, Village President, says a study conducted years ago in Ashwaubenon showed the need for apartments and condos.

    “There was a pent-up demand for 600 units by 2020,” says Kardoskee.

    And action has followed, as this is the first of four total apartment projects being built in Ashwaubenon.

    Others include The Elements, a five-story high-end apartment building offering 67 units, The Bohemian Park Apartments, which will be 4 five-story buildings each offering 50 units and most recently announced an apartment building in the Titletown District, that is being developed by the Green Bay Packers.

    Kardoskee noted a positive from the building plans is that more construction jobs should exist locally.

    The other three apartments are expected to be finished in the next couple of years.

    For now, Kardoskee is excited about the first finished product and the dynamic look it provides to the area.

    “It’s an amazing entrance to Ashwaubenon from the east,” she says.

    Manseau Flats features both one-bedroom and two-bedroom units and Bedford says they are still leasing.


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    FOND DU LAC, WI (WTAQ) - The Wisconsin Lottery will be in Northeast Wisconsin today to help celebrate a record-setting jackpot.

    "We will be selling in the parking lot and we will also be playing a few games for giveaways. What can be more special than a 1.6 billion dollar jackpot?"

    The party will be in Fond du Lac at Philly's Grocery & Deli to help share in the excitement of two large life-changing opportunities.

    Jean Adler, Deputy Director of the Wisconsin Lottery says a new world record has been set with the estimated cash option at $904.9 million dollars.

    "We really do see an increase in sales and therefore the jackpot rises very quickly."

    She says while that excites many, it also distracts people from the purpose of the game.

    "Have fun with it, enjoy it, but please play responsibly. These jackpots are really incredibly high."

    She warns against people buying more tickets than they actually afford or the competitiveness that could get people into legal trouble.

    "Just have fun with it."


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Under a new proposal in Green Bay, the penalty for getting caught with pot in your home would be less severe than if you were caught in public.

    It's all part of an overall push to weaken the penalties for pot possession in the city.

    After months of debate and rewrites, Green Bay's protection and policy committee moved forward a new pot possession ordinance proposal last night.

    Green Bay Alderman Randy Scannell spoke to FOX 11...

    “The main purpose for this for me is to drive this away from a criminal court, not put felony records on people. That is totally unfair.”

    Under the current ordinance, someone caught with 25 grams of pot could be fined up to $1,000.

    Repeat offenders must be referred to the district attorney for criminal charges.

    “I'm for keeping the ordinance as is,” said John Vander Leest, a Green Bay alderman.

    Under the new proposal, someone caught in public with 28 grams, which is an ounce, could be fined up to $500.

    Someone caught in their home could be fined up to $250. Community service is also a possible substitute penalty or could be paired with a fine.

    The requirement of a criminal referral for repeat offenders would be removed in the new ordinance.

    Dawn Radford, a Green Bay resident who supports marijuana legalization, says this proposal is a step in the right direction.

    “This is shaping up to be quite a comprehensive measure, so much so that I don't think I'd be exaggerating if I said you might be crafting a model for the rest of the state.”

    But Vander Leest says the move is out of step.

    “What kind of message are we sending to our community?. I think we have a drug problem in the City of Green Bay and Brown County overall as a whole.”

    The full city council will vote on the pot penalty package proposal next Tuesday.


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    ASHWAUBENON, WI (WTAQ) - Governor Scott Walker stopped in Ashwaubenon on Tuesday to highlight the importance of small businesses and also fielded questions on whether President Trump stumping for Republicans in Mosinee on Wednesday is actually a benefit or a liability.

    Walker was speaking at Packerland Glass Products as part of his Wisconsin is Working tour.

    On the topic of the state's economy, the incumbent Republican Governor credited small business owners with expanding job opportunities in Wisconsin.

    "I just looked on Friday before heading into campaigning over the weekend and we had over 100,000 job openings on our state website," he says. "That's just one site."

    At the event, he received an official endorsement from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Wisconsin political action committee.

    "When small business needs a voice, not silent bystanders, the list of true champions for small business is too often too short," says Bill Smith, state director of NFIB in Wisconsin.

    Smith credits Governor Walker with enacting legislation that has benefited small businesses.

    "We finally have taken an important first step towards eliminating the personal property tax, [which is] a top small business priority," says Smith.

    Walker went on to highlight the role that successful small business owners have in the state economy.

    "They are the part that really fuels the economy," he claims. "They are the people that put people to work, they are the folks that help increase wages and opportunities across the state."

    And in his opinion, the current landscape that small businesses operate in is far removed from when this decade began.

    "We know that things were tough for our small businesses eight years ago," says Governor Walker. "We saw unemployment was over nine percent and we saw thousands and thousands of jobs being lost."

    Walker went on to further credit small businesses for Wisconsin's current workforce participation.

    On the topic of President Trump's visit to stump for Wisconsin Republicans in Mosinee on Wednesday, he said it definitely will create a buzz.

    "Just generating excitement and interest and attention, I think is a good thing across the state," says Governor Walker.

    But will the visit actually affect voting in the November mid-term elections? 

    "Regardless of whether President Trump or President Obama is here, in the end, the people of this state are going to cast a vote between now and November 6 about who should be the leader of the state of Wisconsin for the next four years," he explains.

    Former President Obama is scheduled to stop in Milwaukee on Friday to campaign on the behalf of Democratic candidates.

    In regards to whether President Trump's visit could actually have a negative impact for Republicans in the upcoming election, Walker says it's not that easy.

    "You don't have to agree with the President on everything in order to be able to work with him on the things that are important to people here in Wisconsin," he says.

    Walker asserted that while President Trump's administration has been controversial on some fronts, they have been overall favorable to Wisconsinites. One example he provided was achieving a goal to benefit dairy farmers in recent trade agreements.

    "A year and a half later Donald Trump delivered on that promise," says Walker. "He called me up right before the announcement of the trade deal with Canada and he said, I held out to the very end and you got what you wanted."

    Walker also mentioned the government's quick assistance in flood relief efforts across the state earlier this year.

    The President will be at the Central Wisconsin Airport in Mosinee speaking on Wednesday at 6:30 PM.


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  • 10/23/18--15:33: Danger In The Numbers
  • GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - With record lottery jackpots this week, many are putting some money on the line to have a little fun, but experts say high jackpots can also bring out the worse in compulsive gamblers.

    You can't win if you don't play, but if you play too hard, you may lose in more way than one. That's the message from the Wisconsin Council on Problem Gambling in Green Bay.

    Rose Blozinski, Executive Director says it is more common than many think.

    "It is important to know that in Wisconsin, approximately 5 to 7 percent of the population has some sort of a gambling problem."  

    Blozinski says an early red flag that some people miss is the willingness to risk more money than you did the last time you gambled.  

    They have seen many examples of people who make life-changing decisions in hopes of bettering their chances of winning.  

    She says that can lead to people making some bad decisions.  

    "Spending all my money, I may be borrowing money to gamble and it becomes a vicious cycle."  

    She adds that compulsive gambling has led to suicides and criminal activity.   

    "Don't spend more than you can afford to lose. Use the money that is extra and don't take your bill payment, don't go taking money out of your savings account."  

    Blozinski says it is more than just the risk of going broke.  

    She says compulsive gambling has led to suicides and 65 percent of compulsive gamblers commit some kind of crime to feed their gambling habit.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Local officials are hoping an initiative to improve mental health response in the 2019 Brown County budget proposal will mirror successful results from two other locations in the state.

    "Brown Counties most vulnerable are the people that need the most attention," explains Brown County Deputy Executive Jeff Flynt.

    The initiative would add a clinical social worker position that would work with the Green Bay Police.

    "Currently [the] Green Bay Police has two mental health officers that go out and respond to calls that may be related to someone having a mental health crisis," explains Flynt.

    The initiative would attempt to bring the trained clinical social worker together to assist those officers.

    "That particular individual will be paired with one of the mental health officers, who will respond to those emergencies," he says.

    Flynt says they've witnessed similar initiatives work in both Milwaukee and Madison.

    "What they have seen, and what we could see here in Brown County, is that the number of emergency detentions for people afflicted with a mental health issue goes down," he explains.

    Funds for the position would come from reallocated money within the county and one other area.

    "Also, there is some leftover grant funding from 2018 that is going to be carried over and added to that," says Flynt.

    The initiative would be implemented as a pilot program in Green Bay with future opportunities to expand.


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    OSHKOSH, WI (WTAQ) - A Winnebago County man is facing one count of aggravated battery for allegedly punching a man over a small amount of stolen cash.

    According to the complaint, 34-year-old Christopher Barry punched Steven Mallas in the face after he was accused of stealing $18 dollars from a bar. Mallas died five days later from the injuries.

    Barry's initial court appearance was Tuesday afternoon in Winnebago County Court.

    A friend of Mallas's followed him out of the Boot's Saloon early on October 7 after a claim surfaced that Mallas took $18 from the bar owner's brother, according to the complaint.

    The complaint states that as Mallas and his friend were walking down the street “Barry drove a white van up to the middle of the street, got out, walked past her, and punched Mallas in the face.”

    The complaint goes on to state “After Barry punched Mallas, Mallas fell to the ground and then Mallas pulled out his wallet and gave it to her stated that he didn’t have the money taken from the bar. (The friend) stated that she looked in the wallet and saw $4 so she took it and gave it back to the bar owner’s brother.”

    An officer noticed dried blood on Barry's fingers, but he denied being in a fight with anyone, according to the complaint.

    The complaint also states that Mallas suffered a broken jaw that had to be wired shut.

    According to the complaint, “Mallas suffered from edema into his chest area and he had bronchial pneumonia. Detective Petit reports that Dr. Kelley stated that there was also swelling and infection due to the broken jaw. Dr. Kelley stated that pending toxicology, Mallas’ death stems from the broken jaw."

    Bond was set at $50,000 cash at the initial court appearance on Tuesday for Barry. He will return to court for a preliminary hearing on Monday.


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    APPLETON, WI (WTAQ) - The Wisconsin Department of Justice announced on Tuesday that an Appleton man is being charged with human trafficking, delivering heroin, running a drug trafficking home, and reckless injury.

    Willie Allison will face up to possibly 152 years in prison as a result of those charges.

    “This deeply upsetting case is a reminder that buying sex is not a victimless crime,” commented Attorney General Brad Schimel in a press release. “State and local law enforcement, prosecutors, and victim service professionals worked hard to bring justice to the victims in this case to put this trafficker behind bars. Now the community and these survivors will be safe from this violent criminal.”

    Appleton police and fire previously responded to an area home and saved a woman that overdosed on heroin that was provided to her from Allison. According to the DOJ, he fled the scene after the woman became unconscious.

    Following the incident, he continued to sell heroin and used a website to advertise to women that would have sex for money.

    According to the DOJ, Allison would force women into prostitution by withholding food, using drugs such as heroin and cocaine, and beating them.

    He currently awaits sentencing. 


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    APPLETON, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - A report released on Tuesday showed that people's needs are not being met by the state's transportation systems.

    The report was released by Arrive Together: Transportation Access and Equity in Wisconsin, which is an organization aimed at improving local transportation systems.

    The study examined how communities can improve local transportation and to what extent they are currently providing affordable, convenient, and reliable transportation.

    The full study can be read here.

    Elizabeth Ward, the program's coordinator with the Wisconsin Sierra Club, says a lack of funding in local transportation systems is to blame.

    She says those who suffer from this include seniors, individuals with disabilities, and low income.

    "We’ve been over-investing in massive highways, especially in southeastern Wisconsin and we haven’t been investing in our local transportation," Ward told Fox 11 News. "Transportation is a huge barrier with a relatively easy solution. So we’re hoping people look at this and invest in our transit systems."

    The study also revealed that young people increasingly want to live in a transit-friendly walkable, bikeable towns and cities.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Due to railroad crossing repair starting on Monday, South Broadway Street will be closed from 9th street to Clinton Street.

    The repairs are expected to be finished by Friday, November 2nd.

    Green Bay Public Works is advising motorists to utilize Ashland Avenue, which runs parallel to South Broadway Street.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Green Bay Public Work's announced on Tuesday that Western Avenue will be closed from Thursday until Friday afternoon for pavement repairs.

    Maryhill Drive to Hudson Street will be closed and no detour signs will be posted, but drivers can utilize Fisk, West Mason, and Oneida Streets to navigate around the closure.

    Those who frequently travel the affected area should expect backups and are reminded to drive carefully. 


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  • 10/24/18--00:00: A New Way To Trick or Treat
  • KESHENA, WI (WTAQ) - One area community is offering a different kind of Trick or Treating experience after a scare last year.

    Halloween is a week away, and Keshena will offer children an extra safe Trick or Treat option this year.

    "It is almost like a door-to-door, but is a booth-to-booth Trick or Treating."  Menominee Tribal Police Interim Chief Richard Nacotee says the College of Menominee Nation will open their doors for a community-based Trick or Treat on Halloween.  Kids will dress up and get candy from trusted groups in the community.  "It is more local agencies here such as the police department, and maybe social services and others that are going to be having little booths."  After a bag of meth was found in a child's candy supply last year, parents were concerned and officers are doing a lot of educating.  "We are giving presentations and classes on safe Trick-or-Treating and what to look for and on parents checking kids candy."  Nacotee says no matter what, parents still need to check over their children's candy.  Trick or Treating door to door will still take place on Sunday the 28th.   Last year, tainted candy was reported in multiple area communities.

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    JACKSONPORT, WI (WTAQ) - A 90-year-old man died after crashing into a petroleum tanker truck in Jacksonport Tuesday afternoon.

    The crash happened around 1:30 on State Highway 57, north of Bechtel Road.

    Door County Sheriff's Department says the petroleum tanker was backing into a driveway when it was struck by a pickup truck, traveling southbound on State Highway 57.

    The driver of the pickup truck was pronounced dead at the scene, while the driver of the tanker was unharmed.

    The Door County Highway Department was called to assist with the cleanup of a small fuel spill from the crash.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A business and manufacturing center for small businesses in Green Bay has been making quite the economic impact.

    The Advance Business and Manufacturing Center incubator is the economic development arm of the Greater Green Bay Chamber.

    Their goal is to provide start-up businesses the resources they need to get off the ground.

    "The goal of the incubator is to provide a connecting place for entrepreneurs to partner resources and to assist them in their startup," says Kelly Armstrong, Vice President of Economic Development with the Greater Green Bay Chamber.

    Some of those resources are as basic as physical space for start-up businesses to operate in.

    Other resources include providing invaluable experience.

    "An incubator is supposed to be more than just physical space," she says. "There's mentoring, it's the connecting with other entrepreneurs, it's access to the resources."

    Armstrong says technical training is provided by their partners, which include the Northeast Wisconsin Technical College Small Business Initiative & Entrepreneur Resource Center, Wisconsin Small Business Development Center at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and SCORE Chapter 508.

    The component of this center that sets it apart from the rest is the manufacturing opportunities it provides.

    "That person that might be tinkering in their garage this is a perfect opportunity for them to move that manufacturing component into an actual manufacturing space," explains Armstrong.

    Most start-up businesses will utilize the center for a couple of years, but the ultimate sign of success is when they take off.

    "The idea is that they would grow and graduate out," she says. "Grow their business enough that they would then go out and get space out in the general community."

    And there have been plenty of successful businesses that have grown out of the incubator. The Greater Green Bay Chamber lists that 268 graduates have passed through the center and they have 56 current clients.

    The combined cumulative economic impact of those businesses equates to more than $87 million for the area.

    And they're still growing. Officials are reporting that the center's impact increased year-to-year more than $2 million this past year.


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    MILWAUKEE, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - The Manitowoc Sheriff's Office announced on Wednesday that both Milwaukee and Manitowoc officials will be working together to file criminal charges following the suspicious death of a 7-year-old.

    Ethan Hauschultz was found unresponsive on April 20 around 4 PM at a relative's home.

    Following an autopsy on April 23 investigators stated they were looking into the location where Hauschultz died, which is a residence in the Town of Newton.

    "When I got there Ethan did not have a heart beat and his temperature was 23 degrees. They worked on him for five hours, giving him CPR the entire time, and still couldn't get a heartbeat. There was no brain activity," Hauchultz's mother told FOX 11 days after her son's body was found.


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    MARINETTE COUNTY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Oct. 19, 2010. It's a day Diane Streckenbach will never forget.

    "I just wish someone would come forward and let us know so we can put some closure to this," said Diane Streckenbach. "Tuesday morning, I got the phone call from her boss stating they could not get a hold of her. They text her, emailed her... phone and that's not Debra. She came to work every day no matter how she felt."

    Streckenbach's daughter died eight years ago. A fire burned Debra Streckenbach's home in Stephenson to the ground. Fire officials found some of her remains inside the home.

    "They did not find all of her remains so we know it was a homicide," Diane Streckenbach said. 

    FOX 11 contacted the Marinette County Sheriff's Office about the case. In an email, Lt. Barry Degnitz said:

    The Marinette County Sheriff's Office does not really have any comment regarding the fire/death investigation of Debra Streckenbach. We have been working with the Wisconsin Department of Justice-Division of Criminal Investigation on the case from the start of the investigation. The case is still open and active.

    "I've got my feelings as to who it was. There's three people that I feel that are involved in this," Diane Streckenbach said.

    While the sadness still lingers, Diane Streckenbach knows, feelings aren't as strong as evidence or a confession.

    "We need to have somebody come forward with any kind of information that they have,"Diane Streckenbach said.

    She is determined, refuses to give up and most of all misses her daughter who she considered her best friend.

    "She always had that smile on her face," Diane Streckenbach said.

    Debra Streckenbach left behind two children. They're now 16 and 20-years-old.

    If you have information about the case, you're asked to call the sheriff's office at 715-732-7600.


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    APPLETON, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Students and staff from Appleton North High School wore orange shirts at school yesterday in support of National Unity Day.

    The day is intended for individuals to band together against bullying and to promote kindness, acceptance, and inclusion.

     

    One of the students from Appleton North High School, Stephanie Scheer, says she has been a victim of bullying in the past.

    "I felt bad about myself and how I was as a person, but I realized I can find help and get a new group of friends," Scheer told Fox 11 News.

    The hope is that the anti-bullying message will be received by her peers.

    "Bullying isn't okay and...know there are other people out there for them and others that care that wouldn't bully them," Scheer said to Fox 11 News.

    Staff members also supported the cause on Wednesday.

    "Anytime a student feels threatened or doesn't feel comfortable they should seek someone out, hopefully they have a trusted adult that they can turn to and talk to. Our guidance counsel is awesome at welcoming and listening," Jean Pynenberg, a teacher at Appleton North, told Fox 11 News.

    Students from the Appleton School District can also download the "STOPit" app, which allows individuals to anonymously report their concerns to the school.  


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - The upcoming holiday season means local food pantries are wanting to stock their shelves.

    Hopefully, the Stock the Box food drive put on by the Green Bay Area School District will be able to help that cause.

    "Stock the Box is really the community coming together to make sure people are getting what they need," Green Bay West High School student Cade Benz told Fox 11 News.

    The district is partnering with Associated Bank and the Green Bay Packers for the third consecutive year to make the food drive possible.

    "We are firm believers in giving back where we work and live. It's just so cool to be working with the students in these schools and teaching them at a young age the importance of giving back as well," Erica DeQuaine, from Associated Bank, told Fox 11 News.

    Feeding America, a non-profit organization, received over 9,000 pounds of food collected in last years drive.

    "It's really great to see all these students coming together for their community. With one in five children not having enough to eat, they may not realize that participating in this it's actually helping other students in their class," Lisa Endl, with Feeding America, told Fox 11 News. "This is really an important time of year, because when the temperature drops people are thinking can I afford to turn on the furnace, or buy groceries. So they're really faced with tough decisions and any donations that we can receive to give to the local pantries helps."

    This year's Stock the Box for Hunger food collection will be Oct. 27 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Lambeau Field parking lot at the corner of Lombardi Avenue and Ridge Road.

    The itinerary for that day includes:

    • 10 a.m. – Food collection begins, community members are invited to begin dropping off canned food in support of their chosen school

    • 11 a.m. – Autograph session with a Packers alumni and high school band pep rally

    • 12:45 p.m. – Local leaders will announce the school with the largest food collection


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