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State track and field photo gallery now online

June 06, 2011 2:16 p.m. | We've just updated the photo gallery from Peter Zuzga and Todd Ponath with more action from all divisions in this year's state track and field meet in La Crosse.

Brookfield East won the boys Division 1 competition with 57 points to 39.33 for Arrowhead. Bradley Tech was tops in the girls Division 1 meet, outpacing Arrowhead, 64-40.

Go to photo gallery

Residents, officials pleased with improvements at Calhoun Road railroad crossing in Brookfield

9:08 p.m. | "Pleasantly surprised" seems to be an accurate way of describing reactions to recent improvements at a railroad crossing in Brookfield.

For months, residents and commuters have been dismayed at the condition of the southern crossing at Calhoun Road, just north of North Avenue.

City officials have been hard at work talking to Canadian Pacific Railway in order to get work done at the bumpy crossing. Residents have been hard at work making sure that their officials kept that going.

"We've been working with the railroad company and the office of the commissioner of railroads to try to get this to a resolution," city of Brookfield director of public works Tom Grisa said. "We're happy that we've come to what I consider a successful resolution."

Last week, construction was finally done on the crossing and initial reactions have given it high marks.

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Brookfield committee to study beekeeping

1:33 p.m. | There's a new buzz in Brookfield.

Not long ago the city put a stop to a movement to allow more residents to keep chickens in their backyards. Now, there are questions about beekeeping.

Much like backyard chickens, residential beekeeping is a recent trend. In 2010, the city of Milwaukee began allowing residents to keep bees, and the city of Wauwatosa passed a similar ordinance last year.

In Brookfield, Alderman Bob Reddin has made a legislative referral regarding the topic on behalf of a constituent.

"I had a constituent come to me who had wanted to do beekeeping," Reddin said.

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Brookfield East track and field synonymous with success

12:53 p.m. | When you finish the season in your sport with a state championship next to your name, it doesn't get better than that.

Brookfield East boys track and field coach Mike Steiner and his staff won their fourth state title in the last six years, and they won their fourth straight WIAA sectional championship.

The Spartans won three meet titles: their own Spartan Invitational, the Sun Prairie Invitational and the Northstar Invitational.

In the Greater Metro Conference, they were the Triple Crown Champions (the fifth time they accomplished that feat), and they won the GMC Outdoor for the seventh straight year.

"To sum it all up, we had a special year with some really special kids," Steiner said. "It takes an awful lot to achieve at the level we aspire to. The winning is nice, but to see the kids put forth the kind of effort and determination to succeed is what makes it worthwhile.

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Brookfield East baseball team drops four of five

12:39 p.m. | Following a week in which it went 6-0 to get back into the thick of the Greater Metro race, the Brookfield East baseball team saw its momentum halted.

The Spartans dropped four of five games to fall to 11-11 overall and 8-7 in conference play.

East entered this week tied with Franklin and Wauwatosa East for fifth in the Greater Metro.

Oak Creek

East had its six-game winning streak snapped June 20 with a 7-2 loss to conference leader Oak Creek.

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Brookfield Bulldogs rally for win, stay in first place

12:18 p.m. | Needing a win to stay in first place, the Brookfield Bulldogs overcame a three-run deficit to pull out a 5-4 road win over the West Bend 7-Up on June 26.

A two-run home run by Billy Bynum put West Bend up 4-1 in the fifth, but the Bulldogs rallied to tie the game with a two-run home run by Scott Booth in the sixth and a single tally in the seventh.

Mike Mierow led off the ninth with a walk, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt, stole third base and then came home on a sacrifice fly by Mike Jacobs to put the Bulldogs up 5-4.

Greg Basthemer, who pitched 41/3 innings of scoreless relief of starter Jonathan Keane, held West Bend down in the ninth to pick up his fifth win of the season.

Dan Barwick and Bill Gorman each had two hits for the Bulldogs, who, at 8-2, lead the Land O'Lakes Suburban Division by one-half game over Lannon.

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2016 Fourth of July events in the Milwaukee suburbs

11:50 a.m. | From the North Shore, to Oak Creek and Franklin, to Wauwatosa and Brookfield and West Allis and New Berlin, and all the rest of the communities within the NOW coverage area, there are plenty of Fourth of July festivities to take part in. Below is a list separated by county of events planned to celebrate Independence Day 2016. If you you know of an event you don't see listed below, email us at news@jrn.com.  

Milwaukee County

Bay View

Juy 4

Celebrate the 4th of July in Humboldt Park, 3000 S. Howell Ave. This year’s theme is joining hands for peace. No alcoholic beverages are allowed in Milwaukee County Parks without a permit. For the latest updates, visit www.city.milwaukee.gov/july4th.

9 to 10:15 a.m.: parade, starting at South Kinnickinnic Avenue and East Linus Street, proceeds to park.

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Brookfield's Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts names Lynn Sprangers new president and CEO

June 27, 2016 10:17 a.m. | For years, the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts has provided Brookfield and the surrounding region with music, art, entertainment and community.

Starting in August, the center will turn over its reins to a new leader.

The Wilson Center has announced that it has selected Lynn Sprangers as its new president and CEO. Sprangers will join the center officially Aug. 1.

Sprangers' hiring is the culmination of a four-month search after executive director Jonathan Winkle left for a new job in New Mexico in January.

Wilson Center board chair Jan Wade complimented Sprangers as having all of the skills and experiences to help guide the organization into the future.

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Long-tenured sports writer Sky Skibosh heads into retirement, sort of

June 26, 2016 10:56 p.m. | After 14 years, I am stepping down from my position as sports reporter/writer/columnist and tweet guy for Brookfield, Wauwatosa and New Berlin as of June 30.

I have been thinking about this since the end of the winter season. The main reason is my wife, Kathy, turned 65 (hopefully she won't read this) in July and is eligible for Medicare. I've been eligible for two years (I know, I look like I just turned 40).

The second reason is my kids and their spouses have given Kathy and me two new grandsons — Ayden in November and Lewis in February — to go along with Angeline, a 16-year-old Waukesha Northstar junior, and Aria, a perky 3-year old. We need more flexibility to go see them, especially Ayden, who lives in La Cresenta, California.

Favorite teams

I have been blessed with many great teams, too many to remember, since I can't remember what happened two days ago. But I want to bring up five in particular, all state champs in all three of my papers.

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Brookfield Central student charged in bomb scare at school

June 24, 2016 6:00 p.m. | The morning of May 6 brought police to Brookfield Central High School after a note was discovered in the girls' bathroom that made a bomb threat.

Nearly two months later, the individual responsible for the false threat has been charged. The student was identified on the day of he threat, but charges were not filed until Wednesday

Hannah L. Cobleigh, 18, of West Allis faces up to three years and six months for the bomb scare, a class I felony.

According to a criminal complaint, Cobleigh herself informed school staff about the note that she said she had found in the girls' bathroom at approximately 8 a.m.

The note read "On today, Friday May 6th, 2016: Brookfield Central High School will be bombed. You will not know when this is coming."

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Elmbrook names Sobocinski as new assistant superintendent for business services

June 24, 2016 12:17 p.m. | Elmbrook schools have a new leader at the helm of business services in the district.

The Elmbrook board of education named Kristin Sobocinski as the district's new assistant superintendent for business services at its meeting Tuesday.

Sobocinski comes to Elmbrook after having served as the director of business services at the Grafton School District.

Prior to that, Sobocinski worked as a marketing manager in a number of companies around the country. She earned her MBA at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and her Business Manager Certification at UW-Whitewater.

Sobocinski will replace Erik Kass, who is leaving the district after three years.

New Starbucks to anchor retail building at Sendik's Towne Centre in Brookfield

June 23, 2016 12:10 p.m. | There's nothing like grabbing your first cup of coffee in the morning.

For commuters and residents who go past the area of West Capitol Drive and North Brookfield Road, coffee may be at hand.

Brookfield Station LLC is proposing the construction of an 8,700-square-foot retail and office building on an outlot of Sendik's Towne Centre, 19115 W. Capitol Drive. The building would be located between Jake's Burgers and BMO Harris Bank.

A Starbucks is proposed for the site.

A public hearing for the site was held Tuesday, June 21, and it earned approvals from both the plan commission and common council.

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OwnersEdge gives Green Bay business owner an alternative to selling

June 22, 2016 4:33 p.m. | For five days, Steve Elias didn't even open the unsolicited acquisition offer.

Although he wanted to sell his three Green Bay businesses, Elias worried about how a new owner — particularly one looking to consolidate within the industry — might treat his 70 employees. So instead of responding to the sender, Elias remembered a presentation he had heard several years earlier and picked up the phone.

Six months later, Elias is still running his companies, but they've been sold to OwnersEdge Inc., a Brookfield-based employee stock ownership plan holding company that is looking to invest in and build companies in the Midwest.

The presentation Elias remembered was made by Lisa Reardon, president, chief executive officer and chairwoman of OwnersEdge. Reardon had talked about business owners' succession planning, and about how her company sought diversification through acquisitions of companies with leaders such as Elias who want to continue running their businesses.

"Quite honestly, nothing's really changed for me," said Elias, president of Baycom Inc., a provider of wireless voice, mobile data and video equipment to public safety and commercial clients.

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Trainer allegedly sexually assaulted client at town of Brookfield fitness center

June 22, 2016 3:00 p.m. | A 52-year-old Pewaukee man could face more than 10 years in prison if he is convicted of the two counts of sexual assault he was charged with this week.

Joseph A. Richmond was charged with one count of third-degree sexual assault and one count of fourth-degree sexual assault after a woman accused him of inappropriately touching her on two occasions after workout sessions at the fitness center, where he works as a personal trainer.

The woman told police that she was a regular at G-Form Fitness, 19700 W. Bluemound Road, town of Brookfield. A friend had recommended Richmond as a trainer.

The woman subsequently signed a contract for 10 physical therapy sessions with Richmond.

The first session took place June 6 at G-Form. After the workout, according to a criminal complaint, Richmond allegedly offered the woman a discounted massage and stretching session.

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Brookfield aldermen OK Artisan apartments, public funding

June 22, 2016 10:25 a.m. | City of Brookfield — One of the few empty lots in the heart of the Bluemound Road Corridor will soon be filled.

Wimmer Communities is on track to start work on The Artisan, a 99-unit apartment project, on an empty lot of Fountain Square on Main Street southeast of the current eastern terminus of Wisconsin Avenue.

On a split vote, 8-6, the common council on Tuesday, approved zoning requests and the allocation of tax incremental financing (TIF) funds from TIF No. 3 to make the project possible.

Funding fiasco

The most controversial portion of the approval process was predictable, with a half-dozen aldermen voting against providing public funding to assist in the development of The Artisan.

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Brookfield council reaffirms committee's denial of TIF referendum referral

June 22, 2016 12:12 a.m. | City of Brookfield — By the logic of a dozen members of the city's common council, residents will have the power to make their opinions known on tax incremental financing (TIF) districts — but not via referendums.

Twelve aldermen on Tuesday voted against a legislative referral made by aldermen Christopher Blackburn and Jerry Mellone last fall that would require all TIF requests with project costs of over $1 million to be decided by referendum vote.

A number of those officials pointed to the process of a democratic republic as empowering residents to make their voices heard if they have a problem with TIFs.

"The residents do have a say. They have a say every two years when half of this council is up for re-election," Alderman Jeff McCarthy said. "If our residents don't like the way we voted, they have an opportunity to vote us out."

The topic represented the final step of a conversation that has spanned months since Jerry Mellone and Blackburn introduced the idea last September in response to the city accelerating its use of TIFs in recent years.

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