The following is a selection of brief news items from this week's edition:

Program donates produce to those in need

Gardeners with more produce than they can use may donate their fruits and vegetables to local organizations to provide fresh food for those in need.

The Jackson County Produce Exchange — A Home Grown Response to Hunger in Jackson County connects growers to county consumers who need to supplement their food supply.

Organizations and agencies accepting fresh produce include the Boys & Girls Club of Jackson County, Jackson County Health and Human Services, Friends Food Shelf and the Neighborhood Food Pantry.

The Jackson County UW-Extension office has brochures with the information about the produce exchange and the sites where donations can be dropped off.

The Boys & Girls Club, the Department of Health and Human Services and Friends Food Shelf are located in Black River Falls, and Neighborhood Food Pantry has sites throughout the county.

For more detailed information information on the exchange or for addresses of the sites, call the office at (715) 284-4257.

Artist’s work on display at Tomah gallery

 Artist Tim Latham’s work is on display at Wildes Art Gallery in Tomah.

Latham, a Black River Falls artist, often works without plans or designs. He likes to see which form the metal wants to take.

He comes from an industrial background, having worked as a mechanic, welder and in manufacturing.

He uses his background to apply industrial processes and techniques. This ensures structural integrity and preservation of his metal works. Many of Latham’s pieces can be viewed and placed in various positions. Tomah residents already may be familiar with Latham’s work. Tomah Memorial Hospital’s starfish focal point for its mission statement is a piece Latham created especially for the hospital. He created the starfish from recycled stainless steel.

Latham uses recycled materials whenever possible. Recently he created a series of works “Crude Sparta,” in which he only used recycled Sparta steel.

Latham is the gallery’s featured artist until mid-August, and his work will be on display through the end of 2012.

The Wildes Art Gallery is located at 1510 Eaton Ave. at the junction of I-94 and Highway 21 in Tomah. For more information on this or other Wisconsin artists, contact the gallery at (608) 372-7853.

Tuesday Club art contest winners are selected

The Tuesday Club of Black River Falls has selected 10 winners in its annual art contest for seventh- and eighth-grade students.

Two top winners and eight honorable mention winners were selected. The art contest is for seventh- and eighth-grade students at Black River Falls Middle School. A variety of mediums were judged, including ceramics, drawings, marker, colored pencil, batik and mixed media.

Judging was done by two local artists and Tuesday Club members Kari Hogden and Sue Michaelson, who selected the following top winners: eighth-grader Dylan Coates for his ceramic piece “Cheese Please” and Myranda Dalbec for her mixed media piece “Horse.” Each received a check for $50, and a multimedia drawing set in recognition of their artwork.

The honorable mention winners receiving certificates were Matt Bronsdon for the batik piece “Pac Man,” Taylor Dugan for the tempera piece “Joy,” Ryan Engebretson for the marker piece “Ryan,” Ciara Duffy for the mixed media piece “CatusnApple,” Kaleb Minshall for the colored pencil “2D Buildings,” Darryl Sakizzie for the mixed media piece “Cherry Blossoms,” Mickeala Stenulson for the mixed media piece “Guitar” and Tabitha Raifsnider for the ceramic piece “Green Container.”

The students received their awards at the honors awards program May 31 at the Lunda Theater. Their artwork was displayed at the Tuesday Club brunch and art show May 16. 

Tuesday Club has sponsored this art contest for many years to recognize the importance of art education in the schools and the benefits these programs have on the overall development of young people.

Lee Amborn is the art teacher, and Tuesday Club art committee members include Judy Hansen, Rhonda Holmquist and Hogden.

Free health care academy offered in Black River Falls

Western Technical College and Workforce Connections Inc. are offering a free health care academy for people interested in pursuing a career in health care.

The academy will be held weekdays Aug. 1-7 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Workforce Connections Conference Room at Western’s Black River Falls location at 24 Fillmore St.

Participants will learn the basics about health career options, medical terminology, teamwork, communication strategies, workplace math, computer skills, job search techniques and more.

Those interested in attending are required to go to a pre-academy information session on either Wednesday, July 25 or Thursday, July 26, both at 10 a.m. in the Workforce Connections Conference Room at Western’s Black River Falls location.

Although the academy is free, seating is limited and registration is required. Contact Carol Wagenson at (608) 792-3836 to register.

Basics learned in the health care academy can be applied to Western’s personal care worker certificate, which prepares students for entry-level employment opportunities in a health care setting.

BRFMU warns of identity theft scam

Black River Falls Municipal Utilities is alerting customers to be aware of a fraudulent scheme claiming to offer help with utility bill payments.

The identity theft scam — sometimes pitched as a “bailout” authorized by President Barack Obama’s administration — has been reported by utility companies and their customers in states around the nation. The fraudulent offer — which is known to be distributed by methods including e-mail, social media, phone calls or door-to-door visits — promises that a federal government program is available to help pay utility customers’ bills. In some cases, the scammers claim to represent a local utility.

Victims of the fake offer are asked to provide a social security number, credit card or banking information to enroll in the nonexistent program, after which they are provided fraudulent bank account and routing numbers to use when paying their utility bills.

When the fraudulent payments are discovered and removed, the customer is left with an unpaid bill and the risk of late charges and potential service disruptions. In the meantime, the scammers have gained personal information about the victim that could be used for the purpose of identity theft.

BRFMU is not aware of any such fraudulent activity in the community at this time but is proactively warning customers to beware of any such offers.

BRFMU encourages customers to never provide personal information that the utility company already should have.

Customers with doubts about any caller, online contact or visitor claiming to represent BRFMU should call the utility at (715) 284-9463 for verification before providing personal information.

Skyline Ladies to host Rally for the Cure

Skyline Ladies Golf Association is hosting a Rally for the Cure golf tournament Aug. 15 at Skyline Golf Court in Black River Falls.

Rally for the Cure is the largest grassroots program that includes golf, tennis and dining events created to support the promise of Susan B. Komen for the Cure and spread the message that early detection of cancer saves lives.

Each year breast cancer is the leading cause of death for women ages 35 to 54, and the disease also accounts for more than 75 percent of all cancer deaths in women 55 years of age and older.

Since 1996, Komen has received over $45 million from Rally events to support its mission. This year marks the 10th year Skyline Ladies Association has hosted this event for the fight against breast cancer.

Skyline Ladies Golf Association has expanded the event to 18 holes and invites the public to take part. The day’s activities cost $65, which includes golf, a cart, lunch, prizes and the entry fee of $20. Prizes will be awarded to the winners of the event, and each participant will receive a bag with Komen breast health information, Rally for the Cure items and a one-year subscription to select Conde Nast magazines.

Registration and fee deadline for the event is Monday, Aug. 6. Checks should be payable to Skyline Ladies Association and sent to Nancy Oldham, treasurer, Skyline Ladies Association, 1012 Golf Road, Black River Falls, WI 54615.

For further information about Skyline’s Rally event, contact Joan Ferrario at (715) 284-0033.

Former Tiger Taylor to play for Grinnell hoops

Guard Jack Taylor is leaving the UW-La Crosse basketball program to play at Grinnell College in Iowa.

Taylor, a 5-foot-10 Black River Falls graduate and former All-Tribune first-teamer, averaged 7.0 points in 13.4 minutes per game and made 39.4 percent of his three-point attempts as a freshman playing off the bench in 2011-12.

Grinnell, with its up-and-down style, averaged 112.1 points per game last season.

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