Donors needed to boost summer blood supply

July 28, 2011 6:44 p.m. | Blood donations drop off in summer months, but the demand remains just as strong.

The BloodCenter of Wisconsin will hold a blood drive from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Pettit National Ice Center, 500 S. 84th St., West Allis.

Donations will help children and adults who are seriously injured, undergoing surgery or being treated for cancer and other illnesses. By donating just one unit of blood and one hour of their time, donors have the potential to save up to three lives.

Anyone who is 16 years old is eligible to donate with parental consent and donors under the age of 18 years old are asked to visit to view specific height and weight requirements.

The entire process takes about an hour and all blood types are needed. Donors should bring a photo ID. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 1-877-BE-A-HERO.

Tosa residents oppose Waukesha water plan

July 27, 2011 9:26 p.m. | Wauwatosa - Keep Waukesha wastewater out of Underwood Creek, several Wauwatosa residents told state Department of Natural Resources officials at a hearing Wednesday at Hart Park.

They urged the DNR to require the City of Waukesha to discharge its wastewater directly into Lake Michigan, rather than the creek, if the city is given permission to buy lake water in the future.

Waukesha is asking Wisconsin and each of the other seven Great Lakes states to approve its request for lake water so that it can abandon deep wells delivering radium-contaminated water from saturated sandstone. A 2008 Great Lakes protection compact would require Waukesha to return most of the water to Lake Michigan in the form of treated wastewater.

In its application, Waukesha said its preferred discharge location is Underwood Creek at Krueger Park in Brookfield, immediately south of Blue Mound Road, because of its proximity to Waukesha. The creek is a tributary of the Menomonee River, so the city's wastewater would flow downstream to the harbor and out to the lake.

Two discharge options discussed in the application - a pipeline to the Root River or a pipeline to the lakeshore - would cost more and would have more construction-related environmental impacts than the shorter pipeline to Underwood Creek, the city's application said.

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Mt. Tosa neighborhood plan changes gain panel backing

July 27, 2011 11:24 a.m. | Assisted-living apartments could serve Wauwatosa's aging population on the west side of town, said members of the city's Community Development Committee who supported a change in the Mount Tosa neighborhood plan Tuesday.

Helmut Toldt, developer of the neighborhood at 113th Street and Walnut Road, has requested an amendment to his developer's agreement with the city. With the condominium market stagnant, he has proposed building a 67-unit assisted-living and memory-care facility at the site where a 40-unit condominium building had been approved.

Condos would still be part of the larger neighborhood plan, just on a different lot. The new plan has the condos replacing a 51-unit apartment building, Toldt said in a letter to Mayor Jill Didier.

The assisted-living building could be built and start bringing in taxes sooner than condos, Toldt said.

The existing plans call for 100 apartments and 40 condos spread among three lots, and would have a total value of $16.7 million. The proposed amendment would change plans for the same three lots to 60 apartments, 40 condos and 67 assisted-living units, creating a value of $18.3 million.

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Fundraising to begin for Forest Exploration Center

July 27, 2011 10:44 a.m. | The state has budgeted $145,000 in seed money for the Forest Exploration Center, 67 acres of urban woodland on the County Grounds to be used for educating the public about the role forests play in their lives.

However, the money comes with certain conditions, said Tom Gaertner, member of the center board.

A full-time executive director must be hired by July, 2012. The state Department of Natural Resources owns the property, but it was mandated that a nonprofit organization operate the facility. A part-time director has worked remotely from Ohio, but his contract is nearly up and the board is mounting a candidate search.

The DNR must approve a written management plan and the center must at minimum be able to match the seed money. So far, the center has raised $130,000, Gaertner said.

That means the board will embark on a fundraising campaign seeking dollars from the community, major donors and sponsors. It also will look for opportunities to get grant money.

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Couple surprised by armed robbers in home

July 27, 2011 10:10 a.m. | Two men robbed a home in the 500 block of 98th Street at gunpoint Saturday night.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A 23-year-old man and his girlfriend were hanging out in his upstairs bedroom while his three roommates threw a party downstairs. After the roommates left about 11:45 p.m., the girlfriend decided to move her vehicle into the driveway, so she started down the stairs. She said she was met by two men with t-shirts covering most of their faces, one carrying a gun.

One of the men headed upstairs, where he told the man, "Give me everything, this is a robbery." The robber was carrying a gym bag and called the resident by his nickname. The man handed over $2,000 to $3,000, watches and jewelry, a videogame system and games, cell phone, keys and more.

At one point, the woman was thrown to the ground in the hallway and ordered not to talk.

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Sex offender arrested for removing tracking bracelet

July 27, 2011 10:04 a.m. | A two-time sex offender was arrested for violating probation after he removed his monitoring ankle bracelet Monday.

According to the Wauwatosa Police Department:

Police were alerted by a tampering alarm that Tristan Harris, 26, had removed his GPS-enabled bracelet at 11:32 a.m. Monday. When officers arrived at his Wauwatosa home in the 2200 block of 73rd Street, Harris lifted his pant leg and the bracelet fell off.

Removing the device takes substantial force and likely tools, said a monitoring specialist with the Wisconsin Department of Correction.

Police say Harris told them he didn't like wearing the bracelet and had been pulling on it for a year to remove it. He was sentenced in 2009 to wear it for his lifetime, so law enforcement officers can track his location.

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Man makes threats to neighbor kids' lives

July 27, 2011 2:12 a.m. | A 60-year-old Wauwatosa man was arrested for disorderly conduct after he threatened the lives of his neighbor's children Friday evening.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A mother went outside to tell her 10-year-old daughter and 6-year-old son, who were playing in the 12200 block of West Dearbourn Avenue, that it was time to come in about 7:50 p.m. July 22. She didn't find them immediately, so she started to yell out for them to come home.

Meanwhile, the man came out of his apartment and asked what the mother was doing. When she replied that she was looking for her kids, he had a scary message for her: "You better watch your kids. You better watch them, they might not come home tonight. You might want to check by the train tracks later on. I cut them from neck to groin."

The mother started to panic and called 911. Although the children returned before officers arrived, the mother was worked up and sobbing. She said her neighbor had threatened her kids in the past.

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Man accused of driving into gas station, fifth OWI

July 27, 2011 2:08 a.m. | A 42-year-old Milwaukee man is facing a felony charge of fifth-offense drunken driving after he drove into a Wauwatosa gas station Friday evening.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

Drivers at Highway 45 and Mayfair Road called in a reckless driver who had hit the curb in several spots and whose vehicle had smoke coming from it at 6:13 p.m. As Brett Lieungh drove his Mercury Grand Marquis past Congress Street, he reportedly came close to hitting a pedestrian.

When his car pulled into the gas station at 11131 W. Hampton Ave., it struck the building. The damage looked cosmetic and the impact was minimal.

When officers confronted Lieungh, he couldn't stand up or walk. He required a wheelchair to enter Wisconsin Heart Hospital for a blood test.

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City won't create small-business specialist post just yet

July 27, 2011 2:02 a.m. | A small business specialist position has been put on the shelf until the city's 2012 budget picture becomes clearer.

The Employee Relations Committee on Tuesday voted to put the request to create the position on file, which means that no action will be taken at this time but it could be brought up again.

With the city facing a $2.3 million budget shortfall next year and a shortfall of $8 million over five years, there has been concern among some committee members about adding staff. The Budget Committee will start meeting to consider funding requests in September.

Proposed compensation includes a $51,000 to $71,000 salary plus benefits.

The draft job description calls for the holder of the post to provide small business development assistance, coordinate retail and commercial attraction and retention efforts, provide administrative support to boards and commissions, collect and analyze demographic and economic data, assist in implementing redevelopment plans, make presentations to business and community groups, and prepare economic development grant applications.

Badger CrossFit gym opens near 62nd and State

July 27, 2011 1:46 a.m. | Badger CrossFit gym will open Saturday, taking advantage of the growing residential population coming to Wauwatosa's State Street district.

The gym will operate at 1169 62nd St., across the street from The Reserve apartments on State Street. The Enclave apartments broke ground earlier this summer on 62nd Street and the proposed master plan for the Village calls for additional housing units in the area.

The grand opening will include group workouts by owners/trainers Tyler Sullivan and Marc Boff at 1 and 2 p.m., to demonstrate the CrossFit method of "functional fitness." For information, visit

"We perform movements which closely mimic the natural movements we do in everyday life, like squatting every time we get up off a chair or dead-lifting every time we pick something up off the ground," Sullivan said in a news release. "These movements use multiple muscle groups together to help keep you mobile and strong during all stages of your life."

The CrossFit philosophy touts 10 areas that people of all fitness levels should focus on: cardiovascular and respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, speed, coordination, agility, balance and accuracy.

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Fire chief wants residency rules eased

July 26, 2011 11:10 a.m. | Scott Erke has been promoted from deputy chief to assistant fire chief.

Erke steps into the position vacated by Michael Anton, who retired earlier this month. Since it's likely a second assistant chief position will open up in the next six months, Wauwatosa Fire Chief Rob Ugaste is doing some staff planning.

Tonight, he'll ask the Employee Relations Committee to consider removing the residency requirement for deputy chiefs, which are the third tier of leadership within the department.

A healthy fire department promotes from within, typically from the rank below, Ugaste said. If another assistant chief retires, that position will be filled by a deputy chief.

Taking into account a restructuring that would eliminate one deputy chief position, there should be one deputy chief vacancy to fill in the not too distant future.

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Wauwatosa considers allowing food carts in Hart Park

July 26, 2011 10:57 a.m. | A game of Frisbee, biking along a trail and playing tennis can really work up an appetite, and at least one Wauwatosa food vendor is interested in satisfying the hunger of Hart Park visitors.

China East restaurant, located at 68th and State streets, is interested in setting up a food cart or kiosk inside the park. Tosa has no specific ordinances governing the operation of such an endeavor on park property so the issue was turned over to the Parks and Forestry Board last week.

Commissioners said they don't believe a small food cart would take too much away from efforts to get park users to patronize neighboring Village businesses, and it would give park users a snack option when the stadium concession stand isn't open. The concession stand is operated by the high school booster clubs as a way to raise money.

It's easy to imagine one cart leading to interest in bringing wagons and food trucks to the park, Commissioner Steve Berg said.

"I'm not saying that's good or bad," he said. "We have to determine limits and whether they would pay a percentage of sales or a rental fee (to the city)."

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Plan for working with higher-than-expected Hart Park playground costs in works

July 25, 2011 5:02 p.m. | Bids for the Hart Park playground project came in higher than anticipated, but city staff members believe part of the project can move forward this year by shifting around some capital improvement dollars and borrowing some money.

The Parks and Forestry Board held a meeting Friday to review the bids that had come in the prior day.

"The bids came in substantially over the latest estimates," said Bill Porter, city public works director.

City staff expected the project to cost $1.2 million, plus a 15 percent contingency, for a total cost of $1.4 million. However, the low bid for the entire project came in at more than $1.6 million.

Porter said he could only guess that asking for bids during the busy summer/fall construction season and an uptick in the economy led to the higher project costs.

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Man arrested for stealing minivan from service shop

July 25, 2011 11:48 a.m. | A Milwaukee man who allegedly took a minivan from the service bay at a Wauwatosa automotive center Thursday is facing a felony vehicle theft charge.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

Jermaine Russell, 35, approached a technician at Kapusta Brothers & Sons, 6005 W. Vliet St., to ask what was wrong with the Ford Windstar about 9:45 a.m. The vehicle was parked in front of the service bay, where it was to undergo an engine test. It was unlocked with the keys in the ignition.

Russell got into the van, and an employee ordered him to get out. Instead, Russell told the employee off and drove away. He left a girl's bicycle at the auto shop.

Russell was stopped in the minivan at 60th Street and North Avenue. Milwaukee police had been looking for him for a theft that had occurred in their city earlier that morning. He was wearing a shirt taken in the theft and had a bag with metal-cutting snips and a screwdriver in his possession.

Man charged with vandalism in East Tosa

July 22, 2011 5:08 p.m. | A 61-year-old Wauwatosa man is facing vandalism charges after he allegedly broke the window of a commercial building in East Tosa early Wednesday morning.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A neighbor heard loud banging noises followed by glass breaking in the 6300 block of West North Avenue at 1:53 a.m.

When officers arrived they saw Villa Johnson at the door. He had cuts on his arms and there was blood on the broken glass. He told officers his grandmother lived in the building but could not provide her name or contact information.

Johnson lives in East Tosa, where there have been several businesses broken into since early July. He was intoxicated and said he last recalled gambling and drinking bourbon at Potawatomi Casino. He further told police that he's a diabetic and is not supposed to drink alcohol.

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Senior Center director eyes fundraising to make up for lost revenue

July 22, 2011 1:12 p.m. | A decrease in federal grant funds has the Hart Park Senior Center director looking for ways to make up the gap.

The city received 16.5 percent fewer Community Development Block Grant funds than anticipated for 2011. That cut was spread among applicants, including the senior center.

Merry Noel Johnson, senior center director, requested $124,500, but the final allocation came in $20,500 less. This is especially difficult as the grant dollars count as the group's largest source of revenue.

As the funding has been steadily decreasing since its high of $170,000, Johnson anticipates next year bringing even less block grant money to Tosa. It's possible that the funding will be eliminated completely at some point in the future, she added.

Noel asked the Parks and Forestry Board on Tuesday for permission to start fundraising for money to fill the gap.

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We stumped you last week, but there's still a chance this week to identify our mystery photo

July 20, 2011 12:34 p.m. | How well do you know Wauwatosa? Take a look at this week's mystery photo, tell us where it was taken, and you could win a pair of movie passes to Marcus Theaters.

We stumped you last week with this picture, which is of a decorative tile found on a building in the 1500 block of Underwood Avenue.

Check WauwatosaNOW for a new photo to identify each week. You can also find a link to the contest from our News page.

Go to mystery photo.

Contracts have more city workers paying into insurance

July 20, 2011 12:06 p.m. | Members of three city employee unions will see changes to their health insurance benefits that will have them paying toward premiums and deductibles.

The changes come following the passage of the state's budget bills, even though Wauwatosa doesn't participate in the state health insurance program.

The city had reached agreements with the dispatcher, clerical and public works unions that called for an increase in health care insurance premium contributions from 3 percent to 10 percent, for an annual savings of $162,000, City Administrator James Archambo said. However, those contracts weren't ratified by the Common Council.

Now that the budget-repair bill limits bargaining to wages for all non-police and -fire unions, city officials are ready to make changes to benefits that could help narrow the $2.3 million budget gap anticipated for 2012.

In addition to increases in health insurance premiums for three groups of active employees, the Common Council on Tuesday approved requiring nonprotective city workers who were hired between Sept. 1, 1991 and before Jan. 1, 2008 to pay 5 percent toward their premiums in retirement and the city to offer only one health plan beginning next year.

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Public hearing to be held on Waukesha water proposal

July 20, 2011 10:58 a.m. | Now that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has determined the city of Waukesha's application for Great Lakes water is complete, a public hearing has been scheduled for July 27 in Wauwatosa, city staff told the Parks and Forestry Board on Tuesday.

The application concludes Lake Michigan is the only reasonable long-term water supply for Waukesha. Waukesha's plans call for the used water to be treated and piped to the Wauwatosa border. From there, water would get dumped into Underwood Creek in Wauwatosa, where it would ultimately travel back to Lake Michigan.

Although determined complete by the DNR, state environment officials must approve the plan before it can move forward for consideration by the governors of all Great Lakes states as required by the Great Lakes Compact.

The DNR will hold public hearings at the Muellner Building in Tosa's Hart Park, as well as in Waukesha and Sturtevant, as part of a review on the environmental, public health, sustainability, reliability and financial impacts of tapping into Great Lakes water.

All hearings will include an open house with displays, handouts and DNR staff available to answer questions starting at 5:30 p.m. A presentation and question-and-answer period will begin at 6 p.m. The formal public hearing will be conducted at the conclusion of the question-and-answer period.

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Walmart grocery store agreement OK'd

July 20, 2011 10:54 a.m. | The Common Council unanimously approved a developer's agreement Tuesday that will allow Walmart to open a neighborhood market in the former Jewel-Osco building at 124th Street and Capitol Drive.

The agreement states that Walmart must keep its grocery offerings within 38,500 square feet of space and is prohibited from expanding its store into the remaining 25,000 square feet, City Attorney Alan Kesner said during an interview. That other square footage will be split into up to three other retail spaces.

The document also lists types of businesses the city will not allow to go into the additional retail spaces - including cigarette shops, coin-op laundries and secondhand stores.

Another clause prohibits RVs and campers from parking overnight there, a practice that is allowed at some Walmart stores around the country, Kesner said.

When the store opens it will be a 24-hour grocery store with a pharmacy inside. It will be significantly smaller in size than the traditional Walmart general merchandise or Super Walmart stores.

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Mom arrested after baby in stroller found in busy street

July 20, 2011 10:38 a.m. | A 31-year-old mom from Wauwatosa was arrested on allegations of child neglect after she left her daughter in a stroller in one of the city's busiest streets last week.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A driver had to slam on the brakes at 99th Street and North Avenue when she saw a stroller with a baby in it in the middle of North Avenue at 1:16 p.m. July 12. She saw a woman on the sidewalk as she called 911.

When police arrived, the mother was pushing the stroller down the sidewalk, walking with a male friend. She said she had left the stroller next to the curb while she looked for her cell phone in the grass.

Officers noticed she was staggering and recalled a contact with her about a month earlier during which she also seemed impaired. At the time, the baby's grandmother said the mother and her son used drugs.

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Wauwatosa West, East lose in first round

July 19, 2011 11:24 p.m. | The 2011 baseball season came to an end for Wauwatosa West and Wauwatosa East in the WIAA Regional finals on Tuesday night, but each team bowed out in a different matter.

An improved sixth-seeded Tosa West team (12-14) dropped a 4-2 decision to Woodland Conference Blue Division Champion and third-seeded New Berlin West, 4-2, at New Berlin West.

Meanwhile, seventh-seeded Tosa East (9-22) dropped 12-2 decision to second-seeded Marquette at MATC. The Hilltoppers have won 10 of their last 11 games and are one of the hottest teams in the tournament.

The Vikings scored twice in the first and twice in the third and then the Trojans scored twice in the fifth to cut the lead to 4-2, but that was all the scoring either team managed the rest of the way.

Josh Kundinger and Travis Hudson singled in the fifth to start Tosa West’s rally, putting runners on the corners. Kyle Heideman then scored Kundinger on a ground out and Hudson scored on a hit by Travis Heyer.

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50 curb ramps may be added along school routes

July 19, 2011 3:12 p.m. | The city's Public Works Department plans to use grant money to help pay for the installation of more than 50 curb ramps so children who ride their bicycles to school will find safer routes come fall.

The low project bid came in at a little more than $170,000 and a Safe Routes to School grant will cover about $145,000 of that. Funds in the city's safety enhancements account will cover the gap.

The smooth slope will allow easy passage from sidewalk to street for kids on bicycles, parents pushing strollers, people using wheelchairs and others who find stepping on or off a curb difficult, city engineering staff have said.

Before construction can start, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation must approve the plans. That review is not expected to be finished before the Common Council goes on break Aug. 2 for the remainder of the month. The Board of Public Works on Monday approved the contract contingent on DOT approval so work could be accomplished before school starts. The Common Council is expected to follow suit tonight.

Wauwatosa West, East playoffs begin tonight

July 19, 2011 2:48 p.m. | Wauwatosa West and Wauwatosa East begin their playoffs tonight in the New Berlin West Regional/Sectional.

Tosa West (12-13) will play at host school New Berlin West at 5 p.m. today. The Vikings (22-6) won the Blue Division of the Woodland Conference for the fifth straight season this year.

Tosa West lost, 16-1, last Thursday to the Vikings.

Tosa East (9-20) will travel to MATC to face Greater Metro Conference foe Marquette (21-9), the recent GMC Tournament Champ, at 5:30 p.m.

The Hilltoppers beat Tosa East twice (10-0, 7-5), having to rally in the last inning in their last meeting.

State Supreme Court issues ruling: Tosa loses tax dispute

July 19, 2011 1:48 p.m. | Wauwatosa taxpayers will be required to refund a portion of Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare's multimillion-dollar property taxes, with interest, following a Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling issued Tuesday against the city.

The court issued its opinion in the case of Covenant Healthcare v. the City of Wauwatosa, a case that municipalities around the state have been following as precedent-setting.

At question was whether the outpatient health care facility at 201 N. Mayfair Road should be tax-exempt. The Supreme Court ruled yes, saying "it is used primarily for the purpose of supporting the tax-exempt St. Joseph's Hospital in Milwaukee," City Attorney Alan Kesner stated in a memo to Common Council members.

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare, formerly Covenant, has paid property taxes on the buildings at the site since 2003. Each year they file two cases, one disputing the assessed value, saying it's overpriced, and another looking for tax exemption. This case only takes into account the exemption.

Outpatient centers - rather new in concept when Wheaton Franciscan proposed building the one in Wauwatosa - are popping up around the state and country as another way to treat patients and make money, Kesner said.

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Mayfair now featuring butterflies

July 19, 2011 10:50 a.m. | Department stores, specialty retailers a food court … and butterflies?

Mayfair has added a special butterfly exhibit to the mall's center court for the next three weeks.

Visitors can get close to hundreds of butterflies while learning about them from an educational guide for $1 during regular mall hours through Aug. 6. Kids will have the opportunity to take part in butterfly-themed arts and crafts projects.

Butterfly boxes will be sold for $8, allowing families can observe the process of a caterpillar turning into a butterfly at home over 15 to 25 days.

Tosans form shopping, dining wish list

July 19, 2011 10:48 a.m. | A Trader Joe's grocery store, IKEA furniture and a Super Walmart top the list of businesses Wauwatosa residents would like see open their doors here, according to an online survey conducted by the city's economic development department.

The answers show residents want a mix of specific chain businesses and opportunities for small businesses to move in.

Some of the well-known companies on Tosa residents' wish list include: Michaels or Jo-Ann craft stores, Costco wholesale warehouse, Woodman's grocery store and Nordstrom department store and its off-price version Nordstrom Rack. As for dining options, respondents called for an Outback Steakhouse, California Pizza Kitchen and Dunkin Donuts.

Others didn't have a certain provider in mind, but they would sure like to see a tea house, hot dog eatery, Indian restaurant and a stone-fired pizza establishment with entertainment for children and adults.

Some of the recommendations smacked of nostalgia, such as a variety store similar to Drew's, which operated for years in the Village.

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Chili cook-off, run/walk come to North Ave. on Saturday

July 19, 2011 10:28 a.m. | The temperature isn't the only thing bringing the heat. This weekend, Tosa residents can burn some energy in a new charity run and taste some spicy chili during East Tosa's Chili'n on the Avenue.

The Chili Charity Run/Walk is a new addition for the event's second year. The 3-mile run/walk will raise money for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Eastern Wisconsin, which is located in Wauwatosa.

The run steps off at 8 a.m. Saturday. Registration will be accepted at a tent between 69th and 70th streets the morning of the run. The registration fee is $20 per person or $60 for a family of four or more.

A marketplace, featuring foods from local businesses and children's activities, will be located between 68th and 71st streets and will open at 9 a.m. Live music by Semi-Twang, Greg Koch and Meaghan Owens starts at 11 a.m.

The Chili Cook Off - with more than 15 cooks competing for bragging rights - is the centerpiece of the street party. Contestants will prepare their chili recipes on site, and attendees can sample chili and salsa for $1.

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Tosa School Board to discuss teacher evaluation

July 18, 2011 2:10 p.m. | The Wauwatosa School Board tonight will discuss a number of topics, including a new teacher evaluation model and an update on middle- and high-school scheduling.

The board also will vote on membership in the Wisconsin Association of School Boards and the district's contract for services and personnel with Cooperative Educational Service Agency No. 1 for 2011-12.

The meeting starts at 7 p.m. at the Fisher Building, 12121 W. North Ave. For a full agenda and background materials, click here.

New Berlin West's 11-run first crushes Tosa West

July 14, 2011 8:09 p.m. | New Berlin West (13-3, 20-6) scored 11 runs in the first inning and coasted to a 16-1 victory over Wauwatosa West at Breitlow Field on Thursday night.

Zach Scholz and Darrin Sowinski drove in nine runs from the 1-2 spots in the order.

Scholz had four hits, including a double, three runs scored and four RBIs. Sowinski had three hits, including a double and a homer, scored three times and drove in five runs. Austin Brzeski also homered for the Vikings.

Austin Fritz pitched a 5-inning complete game win, allowing two hits and four walks and fanned one hit. Tyler Gross and Jake Boudreaux each singled for the Trojans, who are now 8-9 and 12-14.

Matt Gillis and Austin Jones combined to allow one run in the final three innings.

Late rally falls short as Red Raiders lose, 8-4, to Pius

July 14, 2011 1:59 p.m. | Wauwatosa East rallied for four runs in the final two innings, but fell to Pius XI, 8-4, at Breitlow Field in a late morning game on Thursday.

The loss dropped the Red Raiders record to 9-20 and the Popes improved to 18-10.

Pius scored single runs in the second and third innings and then put the game away with six runs in the fourth inning.

Justin Pogodzinski had a 3-run double in the fourth inning to blow the game open. Sophomore Connor Senger allowed 8 hits, 5 walks and he fanned 3 batters for the win.

Riley Roe's RBI double and Kyle Dobbe's RBI single got Tosa East on the board in the sixth, cutting the lead to 8-2. The Red Raiders loaded the bases with no outs off Senger before Sam Matel came in and allowed an RBI single to Collin Trautschold and a sacrifice fly to add two more runs.

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Community Development Block Grant funds decrease

July 13, 2011 11:06 a.m. | The federal government is sending fewer Community Development Block Grant dollars Wauwatosa's way this year.

City planner Jennifer Ferguson used the $1.3 million funding level for 2010 when she worked with a block grant committee last fall to allocate grant dollars for 2011. She has now learned that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has cut Wauwatosa's fund by 16.5 percent or more than $200,000.

Knowing funding levels could change, the block grant committee had directed Ferguson to apply any reductions equitably among programs and services. She did that with a few exceptions, she told the city's Budget and Finance Committee on Tuesday.

Engineer declines funds

Namely, City Engineer Bill Wehrley declined additional dollars for sanitary sewer improvements in areas serving low- to-moderate income people. Public Works has sufficient funding to cover the projects that can be accomplished this year and a decision still needs to be made on how to handle inspections and maintenance to sewer laterals on private property before setting aside money.

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Aldermen split on proposal to add business specialist

July 13, 2011 10:40 a.m. | With any increase in property tax revenues relying solely on new development, Wauwatosa needs to bring in projects to fill city coffers.

Hiring a small business specialist could provide more manpower to land developments and help retain and grow successful businesses that already call Wauwatosa home, city staff said Tuesday.

The Employee Relations Committee was asked to support creating a business specialist position primarily to assist small businesses. Adding the position would free up Economic Development Director Paulette Enders to concentrate on bigger projects and more long-term issues, she said.

Enders gave an example of work she was handling but would likely become the responsibility of the specialist. An existing small business that wants to expand is having difficulty with building acquisition. The same business also finds banks reluctant to provide a loan, so she is helping the owner find financial assistance.

"They are an established business that wants to grow," she said. "Someone like that needs even more care."

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A bar in a liquor store? Wauwatosa outlet seeks license change

July 13, 2011 8:21 a.m. | A Wauwatosa liquor store wants to open a lounge to boost sales, but city officials worry a change in liquor license would take away any city control over the business's operation.

Tosa Wine & Spirits, 11747 W. North Ave., has applied to open a small bar area that shop owners are calling "a lounge" with couches and a few tables that would provide seating for fewer than 10 people, a bar and television. People could order craft beers and socialize with friends from the neighborhood, owner Amandip Singh said.

Shortly after Tosa Wine & Spirits received permission to sell liquor, Tobacco Outlet across the street and a nearby Walgreens got licenses to sell packaged spirits. The competition has kept sales down, so a new strategy is needed to differentiate the liquor store, Singh said.

Singh pointed to Vino 100 in the Village - which sells wine by the glass and in bottles to take home - as an operation he would like to emulate, but Mayor Jill Didier said "there's not even a close comparison."

To only sell alcohol packaged to consume off premise, an establishment obtains a Class A license, but serving alcohol on site would require a change to a Class B license, Deputy City Clerk Susan Van Hoven told the Plan Commission on Monday night.

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How well do you know Wauwatosa? Identify our mystery photo and you could win movie passes

July 12, 2011 1:43 p.m. | How well do you know Wauwatosa? Take a look at this week's mystery photo, tell us where it was taken, and you could win a pair of movie passes to Marcus Theaters.

We stumped you last week with this picture, which was of a structure found atop the Technology Innovation Center on Innovation Drive.

Check WauwatosaNOW for a new photo to identify each week. You can also find a link to the contest from our News page.

Go to mystery photo.

Lancers sweep Red Raiders

July 08, 2011 8:28 p.m. | Brookfield Central defeated Wauwatosa East in a doubleheader on Friday evening and finished the regular season with a 11-9 record in the Greater Metro Conference and 16-9 overall.

Central finished the regular season with a 6-game winning streak and 7 wins out of the last 8 games. Tosa East finished with a 3-17 record and a 7-18 overall mark. They have lost 3 in a row and 4 of their last 5 games.

The first game today was suspended a few weeks ago because of rain and picked up with one out and the bases loaded in the top of the fourth and Central leading 6-3. After a strikeout for the second out, Connor Shipman cleared the bases with a double and put the game out of reach at 9-3 and eventually topped out at 14-3.

Danny Barwick had a single, two walks, a triple and a double, scored twice and drove in two runs. Ryan Hinz had a double and a single, two walks and three RBIs.

Josh Ells pitched the final three innings allowing five hits, one walk and three strikeouts. Kyle Dobbe and Jake Lake each singled twice for the Red Raiders.

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North Avenue welcome sign moving west a block

July 08, 2011 2:44 p.m. | People entering Tosa's east side will once again see a welcome sign surrounded by cheerful flowers and landscaping thanks to the Wauwatosa Beautification Committee.

A Welcome to Wauwatosa sign at 60th Street and North Avenue was destroyed in late December after a truck driver got distracted and his vehicle crashed. It's the second time the sign has been destroyed, and this time the committee has decided to move the sign to a space provided on a dentist's office property at 61st Street.

The sign that will now be at 61st and North used to be at 122nd Street and Bluemound Road, and had been taken down because of road construction there, Vice President Marge Donegan said.

"A new sign will be fabricated and paid for by the Wauwatosa Beautification Committee for the Bluemound location after road improvement is completed," she said.

The committee already has purchased 11 signs - at a total cost of about $27,500 - and donated them to the city. Nine still exist.

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Sarah Pease funeral to be held at East on Saturday

July 07, 2011 4:04 p.m. | A visitation for Sarah Pease, the Wauwatosa East High School student who inspired the "Sarah Strong" campaign at the school earlier this year, will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday at Becker Ritter Funeral Home, 14075 W. North Ave.

Sarah died July 3 after a seven-month battle with leukemia. A day later, members of the East band wore "Sarah Strong" T-shirts in her honor in Wauwatosa's Fourth of July parade.

A funeral service for Sarah will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in the auditorium at East, 7500 W. Milwaukee Ave. A reception will follow from noon to 2 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations to be made to the Sarah Strong Scholarship Fund at Wauwatosa East.

Assistant fire chief retires after 32 years

July 06, 2011 11:44 a.m. | Assistant Fire Chief Mike Anton will retire Friday after more than 32 years serving the city.

As the longest-serving member of the Wauwatosa Fire Department, he has worked under four chiefs, moved up in the ranks from firefighter to command staff, watched the city grow and firefighting change.

He intended to become a teacher, but a school counselor discouraged that pursuit. Reading a book written by a New York City firefighter inspired his choice.

"That was it. That was what I wanted to do," Anton said. "The whole idea of being a firefighter was just a thrill a minute."

Donald Bloedorn helmed the department when Anton joined.

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Highlands Cafe, Indian grocery given green light to expand

July 06, 2011 10:52 a.m. | Two Wauwatosa businesses got the Common Council's OK to expand on Tuesday.

The Highlands Café will expand into the adjoining vacant storefront at 60th and Vliet streets, allowing seating for 52 people indoors and 20 outdoors.

Meanwhile, Indian Grocery and Spices, 10633 W. North Ave., won approval to relocate and expand into the vacant three-story North Brook Executive Center, 10701 W. North Ave., across the street.

Owner Dinesh Sanghavi cited a growing Indian population in the Milwaukee area as a reason behind the store's need for more space. He will bring plans for exterior building renovations to the city's commercial Design Review Board on Thursday.

East Tosa master plan adopted

July 06, 2011 10:48 a.m. | After nearly three years of intensive talk about the future of North Avenue in East Tosa, a master plan to guide development was adopted unanimously Tuesday by the Common Council.

Adoption means the city is generally supportive of the ideas provided for improving traffic flow and pedestrian safety, creating public gathering spaces and marketing the district to attract businesses that serve the surrounding neighborhood. It doesn't allocate any of the $5.2 million the plan calls for spending over 15 years to make the improvements between 76th and 60th streets.

Those discussions likely will come as part of the 2012 budget deliberations and those for future budgets.

Two weeks ago, numerous East Tosa residents and business leaders urged the council to back the plan during a public hearing.

Timing not right to decide mayor's pay, aldermen say

July 06, 2011 10:44 a.m. | A move to boost mayoral pay to $30,000 a year after the next election was narrowly defeated, 7-6, by the Common Council on Tuesday, but that doesn't mean the idea of a raise has been put to rest.

In fact, the aldermen were generally in support of a salary increase for a position that hasn't seen a raise since 1984. However, the debate focused more on the timing of the decision and whether other issues such as the size of the council and whether a mayor and city administrator are both needed should be resolved first.

The mayoral post currently has a $22,500 salary.

Alderman Bobby Pantuso said he contemplates running for mayor in the future - though not for the next term - and the ability to receive a decent salary for the work would play into that decision. He called the existing pay, and even the proposed $30,000, "ridiculous."

However, he counted among the council members who voted against the motion because he wanted know where the additional $7,500 needed to fund the raise would come from.

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City foresees staff cuts

July 06, 2011 10:22 a.m. | Alderman Peter Donegan called a projected $8 million budget deficit over the next five years the "most startling" report he's received from City Administrator James Archambo.

Two weeks after Archambo and Finance Director John Ruggini presented the outlook and possible cost-cutting strategies, the Common Council got the opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback.

Donegan said he wants Wauwatosa employees to be the "best compensated" in the area, but that likely will mean there has to be fewer of them. He challenged administrators to not only bring the council ideas for cutting costs but also for increasing productivity so the same duties can be accomplished by fewer workers.

"We have to manage our way there," he said.

Archambo said past strategies - like maintaining a system of rolling vacancies - helped get the city through a short-term budget gap, but that positions will have to be eliminated to achieve long-term savings.

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Talk of downsizing council stirs debate

July 06, 2011 10:14 a.m. | The Common Council didn't consider reducing its number Tuesday, but the matter likely will be up for discussion in coming weeks.

Alderman Dennis McBride has suggested cutting the council by half so each aldermanic district has one representative. He said he believes there would be cost savings and increased efficiencies in having a smaller governing body.

This is not a new debate, but with a projected budget deficit of $8 million over the next five years all possible areas for cutting costs should be considered, McBride has said.

Jason Wilke let it be known that he sees a decrease in the number of council members as reduced representation for Wauwatosa residents.

"We have individual strengths and bring a lot to the council," he said.

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Drunken driving arrest follows fight, crash

July 06, 2011 12:46 a.m. | A 25-year-old mother from Milwaukee was arrested for driving drunk with two children in the car and causing injury to another driver on Wauwatosa Avenue on Monday night.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

The woman had been a passenger in a car that her boyfriend was driving. They got into an argument and he pulled over the Chevrolet Monte Carlo - which has a license plate that reads "ENRAGE" - at 87th Street and Watertown Plank Road and walked away.

The woman got behind the wheel and drove off. After awhile she decided to look for him and said she wasn't paying attention to traffic when she crashed the Monte Carlo into a Pontiac Grand Prix in the 2600 block of Wauwatosa Avenue at 8:04 p.m.

She had her kids, ages 7 and 4, in the car, and she smelled of alcohol. Drunken driving with children younger than 16 in the car is a felony. Her blood-alcohol content was 0.12.

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High-speed motorcycle crash sends driver to hospital

July 06, 2011 12:42 a.m. | A motorcyclist driving faster than 125 mph fled from Menomonee Falls police and crashed after exiting Highway 45 at Capitol Drive in Wauwatosa on Friday morning.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

The motorcyclist, a 23-year-old Milwaukee man, struck the curb along the exit ramp, crossed over Capitol Drive and struck the median barrier at 1:36 a.m. Friday. He ran off toward Penzey's Spices but was quickly apprehended.

He was taken to Froedtert Hospital for treatment of his injuries.

He was cited for not having insurance or registration, driving with a suspended license, causing property damage in a hit-and-run accident and failing to maintain control of his vehicle. He was wanted on a warrant in Wauwatosa for driving with a suspended license.

Civil War group buys flag, flagpole for cemetery

July 06, 2011 12:36 a.m. | Representatives from The Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War gave an American flag and money to buy a flagpole for Oak Hill Cemetery to the city Tuesday.

The group is charged with caring for the graves of Civil Wars veterans, and the donation helps to accomplish this, Mayor Jill Didier said.

The small cemetery at 114th Street and Capitol Drive is home to two Civil War veterans: Private Johann Bahler of Company I, Wisconsin Infantry, and Levi Halsted, surgeon with the 7th Wisconsin Light Artillery, said Dean Collins, chaplain for the Sons. Halsted also is known as the Wauwatosa pioneer who built the Little Red Store, the community's first railroad station and post office, in 1854.

For the past 15 years, the Col. C.K. Pier Badger Camp One and Auxiliary have helped maintain Oak Hill Cemetery. Prior to work sessions, a flag is raised and the Pledge of Allegiance recited. But they have had to use a makeshift flagpole fashioned from plumbing pipes.

The group has provided nearly $1,800 to buy and install an aluminum flagpole.

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July 4 photo galleries now online

July 05, 2011 1:56 p.m. | NOW photographers were out and about in the community this weekend and we've just published a number of photo galleries featuring all the red, white and blue fun from this year's Independence Day festivities in the suburbs.

Follow the links below to check out each community's July 4 celebrations:

Elm Grove Revolutionary War re-enactors

Menomonee Falls

New Berlin

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Windy weather knocking down North Ave. flags

July 02, 2011 3:20 p.m. | Windy days and rain have knocked down some of the American flags hanging along North Avenue.

Richard Bachman, the man who raised the money to purchase the flags, said he's found a few downed flags. But he assumes people have taken a few home.

If flags are found, Bachman asks people to call the Wauwatosa Public Works Department at (414) 479-8933 or drop them off at the Police Department, 1700 N. 116 St.

Park and Ride users urged to keep valuables hidden

July 02, 2011 2:49 p.m. | Leaving the car at a Park and Ride and hopping the Freeway Flyer down to Summerfest should save time and money. However, returning to find a broken window and missing belongings doesn't make for a hassle-free experience.

Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke warns people to leave items such as Global Positioning Systems, iPads, MP3 players and purses at home or at least hide them out of plain sight.

Each day, people board buses at the Park and Ride at Watertown Plank Road near Highway 45 to go to work. But the ridership increases exponentially during Summerfest and so do the number of vehicle break-ins.

Lock doors and hide away valuables, said Fran McLaughlin, Sheriff's Office spokeswoman. Put items in the trunk prior to arriving at the lot in case criminals are casing the area.

She recalled a driver who left a brand new microwave still in the box that was stolen, but she also points out that big-ticket items aren't the only targets. Loose change in cupholders can attract thieves.

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Community Watch

» Donors needed to boost summer blood supply 7/28

» Tosa residents oppose Waukesha water plan 7/27

» Mt. Tosa neighborhood plan changes gain panel backing 7/27

» Fundraising to begin for Forest Exploration Center 7/27

» Couple surprised by armed robbers in home 7/27

» Sex offender arrested for removing tracking bracelet 7/27

» Man makes threats to neighbor kids' lives 7/27

» Man accused of driving into gas station, fifth OWI 7/27

» City won't create small-business specialist post just yet 7/27

» Badger CrossFit gym opens near 62nd and State 7/27

» Fire chief wants residency rules eased 7/26

» Wauwatosa considers allowing food carts in Hart Park 7/26

» Plan for working with higher-than-expected Hart Park playground costs in works 7/25

» Man arrested for stealing minivan from service shop 7/25

» Man charged with vandalism in East Tosa 7/22

» Senior Center director eyes fundraising to make up for lost revenue 7/22

» We stumped you last week, but there's still a chance this week to identify our mystery photo 7/20

» Contracts have more city workers paying into insurance 7/20

» Public hearing to be held on Waukesha water proposal 7/20

» Walmart grocery store agreement OK'd 7/20

» Mom arrested after baby in stroller found in busy street 7/20

» Wauwatosa West, East lose in first round 7/19

» 50 curb ramps may be added along school routes 7/19

» Wauwatosa West, East playoffs begin tonight 7/19

» State Supreme Court issues ruling: Tosa loses tax dispute 7/19

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Best Summer Ever


We've made it easy for you to get out and go this summer. From hitting the trails for a bike ride or walk, to where to find beer gardens in the area, to the best places to swim in Waukesha County to the best summer drinks and summer reads, check out our 2016 summer guide.



Hidden Tosa


"Hidden Tosa" is a semi-regular feature where our Wauwatosa reporter explores the closed down and closed off parts of Wauwatosa.