Graduation 2019 feature: Year in Review

(Provided to Lake Mills Leader for a feature in special graduation insert published in the 5/23/2019 edition of the newspaper.)

This year Lakeside Lutheran High School theme celebrated “Decades of Faithfulness,” recognizing the completion of 60 years of education.

2019 collage web
Photos of the LLHS Class of 2019 from throughout their senior year, many featured in a collage made for the Lake Mills Leader special graduation feature published on May 23, 2019. Individual photos and more can be seen and downloaded free from https://llhs.smugmug.com/School/Senior-Collage-2019/

During the summer of 2018, students kept busy. For the 16th year, the girls track team were conference champs. The boys’ team joined them at the top of the Capitol North. Danielle Schilling broke the school record in pole vault at 11’3 and Collin Schulz set the school record for high jump at 6’9 and placed first at State with a jump of 6’6.

Junior Lukas Heckmann became the 2018 WIAA D2 State Champ in golf.

Warrior baseball finished 12-6 and made an exciting comeback attempt at the regional championship. First team conference honorees included Dustin Pampel, Eric Pillard, and Alex Ryan. Warrior softball ended its season with a 10-7 overall record and saw Shannon Jones awarded 1st-team all-conference honors.

For two weeks, the Warrior Marching Band traveled to the East Coast, performing in parades in Ontario, Canada, and several U.S. cities. At the Enfield, Conn., parade they received Best Marching Band Award.

When school began in August, we had 427 students and four new faculty: Hannah Uher, Science; Nate Sievert, Math and Phy Ed; Michael Helwig, Religion; and Justin Vanderhoof, English and Geography.

Lakeside A Cappella Choir traveled to 20 area churches sharing God’s Word and also spent spring break in California singing in four churches and two schools. Warrior Band and choirs presented four concerts during the year. The band also marched in the annual Jefferson Gemutlichkeit parade and presented its annual concert in November with Federation elementary school bands.

2018 ACT results placed LLHS in the top 2% in the state. Of 85 members in the 2018 class, 73, or 86%, wrote the exam. Based on a 36-point scale, the composite score of these students was 24.2, which is above the state composite of 20.5.

Three students participated in Wisconsin’s Youth Apprenticeship program, working in farming and manufacturing. This allows them to receive hands-on learning in an occupational area at a worksite.

Lakeside Lutheran boys cross country team saw junior August Gresens earn 1st team all-conference honors. Former cross country coach and current German teacher Gerry Walta was inducted into the Wisconsin Cross Country Coaches Hall of Fame in January.

With a record of 11-1 Warrior football took conference and made the longest trek in program history, reaching Division 4 semifinals. Brevin Jegerlehner, Cam Paske, Caleb Raymond, Tyler Holzhueter, Casey Ponyicsanyi, Will DeNoyer, and Charlie Miller all received first-team honors. Casey Ponyicsanyi was named conference Offensive Player of the Year. Coach Paul Bauer was named Wisconsin State Journal/WisconsinPrepZone.com All-Area football coach of the year.

Girls golf took third in the Rock Valley Conference. Sophomore Maya Heckmann was named conference Golfer of the Year, topping it off with a trip to State.

With a record of 9-1, Warrior Volleyball took the Capitol North Conference for a sixth straight year and also won region. Ella Collins and Kaitlyn Shadoski received first-team all-conference honors.

Lakeside boys soccer ended its season with a 7-9-0 overall record.

The varsity math team took first in the highly competitive Madison LaFollette meet and first in both fall and spring Capitol Conference Math Meets.

Senior Noelle Gates won the overall medal for the World History category at the Capitol North Conference Academic Bowl—for the fourth year in a row!

Senior Abby Buxa was named a Commended Student in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program.

Our STEM Academy began this year with 19 students enrolled in Introduction to Engineering Design. LLHS is also one of the first high schools in the state to start a chapter of the Society of Women Engineers.

Boys basketball finished as conference champions with an overall record of 17-4. Jack Monis and Cameron Paske received first-team honors, and Monis was named Conference Player of the Year.

Girls basketball finished with an 11-11 overall record; Kaitlyn Shadoski of Janesville received first team honors.

In wrestling, the team went 10-4 overall and Cole Lauersdorf (182) and Austin Meyer (220) were Capitol Conference Champs.

Dance team was the WACPC Regional Champ and placed fifth in the state after competing in D3 jazz for the first time in school history.

This year, 127 students participated in Teens for Christ. The group held three “New Friends” events, where young people with special needs join with Lakeside teens in fun activities such as human bowling, karaoke, basketball, crafts, and devotion. Students also visited residents at London Lodge, Cambridge, on several Mondays after school. At Christmas, Teens held a bake sale with proceeds funding a foosball table for the ROC in Watertown. Teens hosted a school-wide “Life Day” and heard from speakers about life-related issues to youth today.

In February, students enjoyed a week of costume contests sponsored by Student Council, which also organizes Homecoming festivities and a blood drive in March.

In February, Warrior FFA celebrated National FFA Week with many ag-related contests and activities. The almost 50-strong group held its annual banquet and recognition night in early March. In addition, they joined forces with the construction class and renovated the school’s greenhouse.

The 8th annual Grand Event dinner/auction “Called to Serve” featured a WWII era military theme. Generous supporters raised over $90,000.

The forensics team took its ninth straight conference championship and received The Excellence in Speech Award for the 10th year at State WHSFA Festival in April.

Six Warriors attended the WELS National Band Festival at Wisconsin Lutheran High School, Milwaukee, from March 15-17.

In April, the drama department produced “Murder in the House of Horrors.” Almost 20 students performed while many other students participated behind the scenes.

Sixteen Class A entries earned a starred-first rating at the WSMA Solo-Ensemble District level held in February at Lakeside, qualifying them to perform at State. Overall, Lakeside had 53 solo/ensemble entries involving more than 75 students.

At the Capitol Conference Art Show at the Madison Pyle Center, eight Warrior artists displayed their work.

Warrior Times Weekly was again awarded first place by the American Scholastic Press Association, newspaper division.

On May 26, 100% of the 111 seniors are expected to graduate. Co-valedictorians are Abigail Buxa, Will DeNoyer, and Brevin Jegerlehner, and the salutatorian is Kaitlyn Shadoski.

Seven Operation Go mission trips made up of 60 students will travel around the United States this year to help with church activities and summer camps.

For the 2019-2020 school year, Kirk DeNoyer will become Executive Director, while Todd Jahns joins the school as the Activities Director and boys varsity basketball coach.

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“Warriors” awarded Turnquist Memorial scholarship

Miranda Blake, daughter of Kenneth and Tina, Watertown, and Emily Meske, daughter of Jeff and Jayne, Jefferson, were awarded the Morgan Turnquist Memorial “Warrior Scholarship” at the recent Academic Awards Night at Lakeside Lutheran High School.

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Miranda Blake of Watertown was presented the Morgan Turnquist Memorial “Warrior Scholarship” at the recent Academic Awards Night at Lakeside Lutheran High School. Pictured with Blake are Travis and Kristin Turnquist, of Madison. Emily Meske of Jefferson, not pictured, also received the award.

 

Seniors Blake and Meske were presented the $500.00 scholarship by Morgan’s brother, Travis Turnquist and his wife Kristin. Blake intends to attend Madison College to study nursing. Meske plans to study intercultural studies at Moody Bible Institute.

morgan turnquist

The “Warrior Scholarship” was established by the family of Morgan Turnquist, who would have been in the Lakeside Lutheran class of 2014, but died in 2013 after a 14-year battle with brain cancer. Her family emphasized the “warrior” qualities they saw in Morgan. The award reads in part, “Cancer was all Morgan ever knew, but she refused to let it define her. She maintained a positive attitude to the end. She rarely complained about her situation and stayed true to her family and friends and most importantly to her Lord. Morgan struggled most of her life, but never lost sight of her prize.” The scholarship is intended to reward seniors at Lakeside who exemplify this Christian faithfulness and perseverance in the face of struggle.

Badger State reps announced

Lakeside Lutheran High School has announced its 2019 Badger Boys and Girls State representatives. The boys selected to represent Lakeside Lutheran at the 78th session of Badger Boys State at Ripon College from June 8-15 are Alex Ryan, son of Jeffery and Christine, Lake Mills, and Carter Schneider, son of Scott and Laura, Jefferson. The girls representing Lakeside Lutheran at the 76th session of Badger Girls State at UW-Oshkosh from June 16-21 are Annika Bilitz, daughter of Jon and Mary, Cottage Grove, and Lauren Thiele, daughter of Dan and Teresa, Poynette.

LLHS Badger State 2019
Lakeside Lutheran has chosen its representatives for the 2019 Badger Boys and Girls State Conferences in June. The reps for the class of 2019, pictured L-R, are Annika Bilitz, Lauren Thiele, Alex Ryan, and Carter Schneider.

Annika Bilitz has participated in choir, track, Teens for Christ, and National Honor Society. Also a member of the forensics team, she has received second-team all-state honors and a gold medal at the WHSFA state meet. At Wisconsin Lutheran Chapel on the UW-Madison campus, she is a Sunday school teacher, helps with Christmas for Kids, and is active in the teen group.

Currently ranked eighth in the class in GPA, she is considering a career in business public relations or journalism. A sophomore transfer from Luther High School, Onalaska, Wis., Bilitz says, “My family moved after my first year of high school, so it was like starting over. New friends, new teachers, new city, new everything! I jumped in with both feet and embraced the move and my new circumstances. I have actually thrived in my new school and feel honored that they have chosen me to represent the school at Badger Girls State! I am excited to meet more new people and make new friends.”

Lauren Thiele, currently tied for first in class GPA, has been the Student Council class President for all three years and helps plan the annual blood drive, as well as homecoming and winter carnival. She has participated in Teens for Christ for three years (New Friends), is a member of the National Honor Society, and serves as the secretary for Lakeside’s chapter of the Society of Women Engineers. Thiele is considering a career in business or engineering.

A member at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Madison, Thiele participates in vacation Bible school, as well as the church’s sports camps and fundraising activities. At school she played volleyball for two years, has been on varsity for both basketball and track for three years, and served as a captain of the basketball team. She has attended the Lake Mills Leadership Optimist’s Club Breakfast and received second place (regional Wisconsin) for the Patriot’s Pen Essay Competition sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

“It’s an honor to be chosen from a group of high-excellence students at Lakeside. I am excited to work with new people and make a contribution to advance myself and those around me,” she says. She is also looking forward to “developing new skills in leadership and hear from many different people who have years of experience.”

Alex Ryan, a member of St. Paul, Lake Mills. volunteers at Twice is Nice Resale store, Second Harvest food bank, and with Adopt-A-Highway cleanup with National Honor Society. In addition, he ushers at his church.

At school, Ryan participates in Teens for Christ,  the student newspaper, and the school yearbook. He is the team captain for the baseball team and made first team all-conference his freshman and sophomore years. He travels to play baseball for Stiks Academy and was invited to the Prep Baseball Report Future Games representing Team Wisconsin in Indianapolis. He also played basketball for two years and has been a Lakeside representative to the Lake Mills Leadership Optimist’s Club Breakfast.

“I am looking forward to spending time with many great people and learning new things about leadership,” says Alex. “There are many guys in my class that are deserving of this honor, and I am grateful to be chosen.”

Carter Schneider is “a hard worker who puts his heart into things. I would much rather be a hands-on guy than letting someone else do it, whatever it is,” he says. “I consider myself easy to talk to, whether it’s kids my age or adults, and I don’t mind speaking in front of people.”

Schneider is a member of St. Paul, Lake Mills, where he ushers, canvasses, and serves as a VBS counselor. He works on a chicken farm and has prepared food for people at the Ronald McDonald house. At school, he is his class Vice-President of Student Council and has received academic letters all three years. He received an all-conference honorable mention for baseball last year. Also a member of the National Honor Society, he is considering a career in engineering, business, or accounting.

Commenting on what he’s most looking forward to during the Badger Boy session, he reports that he is looking forward to the opportunity to learn “more about what it’s like to be a leader.”

Badger State Government and Leadership Conferences are an opportunity for students entering their senior year of high school to put the principles of democratic government into action during a weeklong assembly. Sponsored by the Wisconsin American Legion and its Auxiliary, the goals of Badger State assemblies are to prepare young men and women of high school age for citizenship in a modern world, teach principles of democracy, instill a love of country and desire to preserve our government. Schools are encouraged to select representatives based on a combination of interest shown, leadership qualities, character, fitness, scholarship and extra-curricular activities.

Popp to attend FBI Leadership Program

William Popp, Fitchburg, has been chosen to attend the 2019 FBI National Academy Youth Leadership Program, held at the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia. The program is limited to 60 students ages 14-16 from the United States and around the world.

Popp, a freshman at Lakeside Lutheran, Lake Mills, maintains a 4.0 GPA. He volunteers at the Badger Honor Flight homecomings and has collected much-needed items for the local hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit. He also is a member of the school newspaper editorial staff, the math team, forensics, student council, and plays golf and piano. He attends Our Redeemer, Madison.

Popp FBI-YLP
Lakeside Lutheran student William Popp stands outside the Appleton police station where his successful panel interview for acceptance to 2019 FBI National Academy Youth Leadership Program took place.

Popp was one of six students interviewed in the state of Wisconsin. A panel of four law enforcement officers conducted the interview in Appleton.  His grandfather is a retired FBI agent and served as a counselor for the National Academy for one session.

“The amazing thing to think about is that my dad walked the halls of the FBI Academy many years ago, and now Will is getting the chance to do the same thing,” says Popp’s mother Sarah. “According to one of the counselors, these kids come back completely changed by the experience they have there.”

The FBI National Academy Associates’ annual Youth Leadership Program is an intense eight-day program classroom lectures on leadership, ethics, values, juvenile crime, and character strength. It also includes service projects, reports, and final exams. They will have the opportunity to take on a slightly shorter (4.5 mile) Yellow Brick Road, which is the Marine outdoor physical challenge. At the end of the week, a formal graduation service is held.

Twice Is Nice thanked for 25 years of service & support

Not only was last year the silver anniversary of operation for Twice Is Nice Retail store in Jefferson, but Good Stewards, Inc., the managing organization of the store, announced that 2018 marked another significant milestone: $5 million in support given to Lakeside Lutheran High School since 1993. Recent events celebrated these milestones.

Last October, volunteers of the Twice is Nice store and its governing board celebrated 25 years in business with a catered dinner at Lakeside Lutheran. During an after-dinner report from Good Stewards board chairman James Buelow, attendees heard that the total donated to the school was nearing the $5 million mark. Monies donated from Twice is Nice to the high school are used in several areas of the school, including general operating costs, student assistance, building fund and school “wishlist” items.

Thanks to record-breaking store receipts in November and December, news broke last month that the donation milestone had already been exceeded by year-end, while total store revenues had exceeded $7 million. “Store volunteers are always interested in hearing the numbers,” says Buelow. “Seeing the register tape totals add up is a great motivator for many of our volunteers who keep coming back week after week, month after month. The shared mission is something we hold dear.”

Twice is Nice presentation
A recent gathering at Twice is Nice Resale Store in Jefferson expressed thanks and presented volunteers with a commemorative plaque celebrating 25 years in business and $5 million in donations to Lakeside Lutheran High School. Pictured L-R: LLHS Board Chairman Brian Ertman, LLHS Principal James Grasby, Good Stewards, Inc. Chairman James Buelow and a store day manager and board treasurer Carolyn Burow.

As a token of appreciation for the years of service and support, reps from the Lakeside Board of Regents and administration recently gathered at the store to express thanks and present volunteers with a commemorative plaque for display in the store. “The Lord has blessed Lakeside Lutheran High School in many ways during its 60-year history. Twice Is Nice is one of those blessings,” says Principal James Grasby, “The dedicated Christians at the store have made it their mission to support Lakeside’s ministry. The financial support to the school has significantly underwritten the cost of quality, Christ-centered education for thousands of our teenagers.”

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The commemorative plaque made for Twice is Nice store volunteers was created in the Lakeside Lutheran Tech Ed workshop using a new laser cutter that is typical of the type of equipment funded by revenue donations from the store to the high school.

Currently run by a group of almost 125 volunteers, Twice is Nice is one of the few stores of its kind continuing as a 100% volunteer operation. An enthusiastic crew of day managers encourages anyone with questions to call or stop in the store to discuss the opportunity to volunteer. The store is open Mondays-Saturdays from 9-5 PM, located just east of the Hwy 18 exit off the Highway 26 bypass at 907 W. Racine St., Jefferson.

Lakeside Lutheran High School is a four-year high school located in Lake Mills, operated and supported by a federation of 31 area congregations affiliated with the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod and the Evangelical Lutheran Synod. For additional information about Lakeside, go to llhs.org or call 920-648-2321 and ask for Principal James Grasby.

Warrior musicians qualify for State Music Festival

Lakeside Lutheran High School is pleased to announce that 16 Class A entries earned a starred first rating at the Wisconsin State Music Association (WSMA) Solo-Ensemble District level held the week of Feb. 18-25. Starred first ratings in Class A, the highest level of music selection, qualify musicians to perform at the WSMA State Festival at UW-Whitewater Saturday, April 27.

notes_music_backgroundThree large ensembles were among those advancing to state competition: the Warrior Percussion Ensemble, Warrior Jazz Ensemble, and Lakeside Swing Choir. A piano duet by Ella Collins, Lake Mills, and Madelyn Plitzuweit, Oconomowoc, also advanced. Soloists that are moving on include Emma Berg (vocal); Abigail Buxa, Oconomowoc (piano); Ella Collins (piano); Olivia Fregien, Madison, (vocal and music theater); Sophia Griffin, Lodi (music theater); Madelyn Plitzuweit (piano); Riley Schulz, Fort Atkinson (flute and piano); Madelaine Triebold, Oconomowoc (piano); Ashley Valerio, Delafield (vocal); and Elijah Wohling, Beaver Dam (marimba).

In addition to the starred first entries, Lakeside Class A musicians were awarded six first ratings and seven seconds, for a total of 29 Class A performances. In class B, Lakeside Lutheran had 16 entries. Of those, seven earned a first place rating, eight earned a second rating, and one earned a third. Six of the eight Class C entries from Lakeside earned a first rating while two received a second.

Overall, Lakeside had 53 solo or ensemble entries that involved more than 75 students. Lakeside Lutheran High School and Luther Prep School were the 2019 sites that hosted more than 650 entries from among 11 Capitol North Conference middle and high schools.

Top LLHS News of 2018

As Lakeside Lutheran High School looks forward to the blessings a new year brings, there’s value—not to mention, enjoyment—in reviewing the year past. The LLHS good news team took a look at the 49 Warrior stories from our blog and 609 other social media posts released in calendar year 2018 and narrowed them to 10 newsbits that garnered the most attention, celebrated accomplishments, introduced a new aspect, or were a major change for your Lakeside Lutheran High School and its community. Enjoy the year in review!

April: 1st Youth Apprentice program participant

NehlsJeremy Nehls, class of 2018, was Lakeside’s first participant in the Wisconsin Youth Apprenticeship (YA) program. YA is designed for high school students who want hands-on learning at a worksite along with classroom instruction. Nehls worked at the Robert Schwandt Jr. and S.E. Schwandt Sr. Farms near Juneau. YA is part of a statewide School-to-Work initiative done under the supervision of the state’s Department of Workforce Development and serves a wide variety of career programs.

May: 1,000+ Warrior mark at Lighthouse

Lighthouse1000We broke the 1,000th-Warrior mark for visitors to the Lighthouse Youth Center of Milwaukee. This is the 12th year of a partnership that provides sophomore Warriors in Pastor Clark Schultz’s Word of God classes the opportunity to make new friends and enjoy new experiences. Pastor Jim Buske, LL class of ’93 and director at Lighthouse, visits his alma mater each year to present Warrior teens this opportunity to live their faith. On May 1, 2018, Lighthouse reported that Jacob Horta, class of 2020, was the 1,000th Lakeside Lutheran Warrior to step through the doors of under this program.

June: Two state champions in four days

With a score of 147 (+3), junior Lukas Heckmann captured the WIAA D2 golf championship on June 5. The previous day, Heckmann opened the state tournament at Madison’s University Ridge course with a 4-under-par 68 that was the best score of the day, regardless of division. He was named Capitol Conference Golfer of the Year, All-State Second-Team, Madison All-Area Player of the Year. Three days previous, sophomore Collin Schulz took the D2 boys high jump title with a jump of 6’6 at the WIAA State Track and Field Championships on Saturday, June 2, at University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Collin also smashed the school record in 2018 with a jump of 6’9 earlier in the season.

June: A Cappella sings National Anthem

A CapOn June 11, more than 500 Warrior family and friends packed the stands for the second year in a row to hear our A Cappella choir members sing the National Anthem to kick off a Brewers game, this year vs. the Chicago Cubs. Though the Brew Crew lost the battle that night, they proceeded to capture the NL Central title with a 96-67 season win-loss record (winning the tiebreaker game over the Cubs [95-68] in October).

 

June: Drama wins prize for favorite photo

Nifty FiftiesOur “Nifty Fifties” script provider, Pioneer Drama Service, ran a contest for best photo submitted on its Facebook page in spring, as voted by its Facebook page visitors. Student photographer Taylor Wolfram, class of ‘19, snapped a great action pic of a dancing Donald (Isaiah Coleman, class of 2018). Our photo took 1st place (with 450 votes) and the LLHS drama department received a $200 gift certificate good for play materials, royalties, or books!

August: Several new faculty faces

IMG_2317 InstallmentFour new full-time faculty members were installed at the start of the 2018-19 school year, the largest number at once since the 2000-01 school year. Mr. Justin Vanderhoof (second from left) teaches English and Geography and coaches football and track. Mrs. Hannah Uher teaches Science and coaches soccer and cross country. Mr. Nate Sievert teaches in the Math and Phy Ed departments and coaches basketball and track. Pictured at right, Pastor Michael Helwig teaches Word of God classes and directs Operation Go mission trips. We also welcomed back Word of God adjunct instructor Pastor Christopher Koschnitzke (leftmost in photo) for another year.

 

August: Inaugural STEM Academy year

STEM-polos-logo-cross-colorThe 2018-19 school year marked the inaugural year of our STEM Academy, a special program for students interested in taking engineering or biomedical sciences in their post-secondary education. STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, and the Academy is designed to add classes yearly as this first-year cohort ages through the school. The program is using Project Lead the Way (PLTW) curricula administered through Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE). The first class includes 19 students enrolled in “Introduction to Engineering Design” (IED), facilitated by Academy Director Andrew Willems. Next fall, the second course in the series, “Principles of Engineering,” will be available. Successful performance in the high school courses earns students college credit at participating PLTW universities.

 

November: Fourth round playoff football

footballOur Capitol North Conference champs had the longest run in football program history through the WIAA playoffs this season, reaching the fourth round of the playoffs. They defeated Beloit Turner, River Valley, and Edgerton in consecutive Friday night playoffs before losing to eventual state champion Racine St. Catherine’s in the state semifinal on November 9.

Bsuer footballSome sweet icing was added when Head Coach Paul also received accolades from the Wisconsin State Journal:

“Lakeside Lutheran entered with an experienced core and delivered on that promise, led by coach Paul Bauer,” the release read. “For his efforts, Bauer was named the Wisconsin State Journal/WisconsinPrepZone.com All-Area football coach of the year.”

 

 

November: Math team participation sets record

After a remarkable October showing when both our Varsity and JV math teams took first place at the highly-competitive Madison LaFollette meet, November saw a record number of students—117!— participate in the Fall Capitol Conference Math Meet.

math(That’s more than a quarter of our students.) The results are in and, according to math team advisor Todd Hackbarth, “God once again blessed Lakeside with incredible success!” Varsity Team #1 took first overall. Juniors Gil Haw took 1st and Trevor Geerdts placed 5th individually. JV Team #1 took first & JV Team #2 took third in Capitol North. Individually, sophomores Lydia Buxa placed 3rd and Ashley Grundman & Ella Butzine tied for 4th.

December: Greenhouse updates complete

Thanks to a team effort from the Agricultural Survey class, FFA, and the construction class, the courtyard greenhouse, mostly unused for almost 10 years,  was recently renewed and revamped. The construction class built benches from recycled benches donated by St. Coletta, Jefferson, and a fan was added too. Jefferson County AgriBusiness Club also helped pay for benches, and over $2,000 of supplies and equipment were covered by donations from the Lake Mills Rotary Club and last spring’s Grand Event bidders. An HVAC contractor helped with a furnace over Christmas break and the greenhouse is winter-ready! This will help future students learn and work with the greenhouse as part of the Ag Survey course.