“Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition” is looking for “super obese” contestants for Season 4 of the TV reality show and will be in Wisconsin next week. Producers are about to embark on a 13-city tour to find participants. Best bet for the “Makeover” curious is a stop near Milwaukee: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 6, Planet Fitness, 6529 S. 27th St., Franklin, Wis.
The show features specialist Chris Powell, who works with “super obese” people for a 365-day period of transformation that includes shedding hundreds of pounds and offering tips on nutrition and exercise.
Minnesota boasts Duluth, International Falls and Minneapolis as its heavyweights. Green Bay, Wis., and Fargo, N.D., also are in the tournament. All of the aforementioned cities had healthy first-round leads as of Tuesday afternoon. Voting for the opening round ended at 3 a.m. today.
Smokey Bear warned against wildfires, but he never said anything about theft.
Wisconsin Crime Stoppers is offering a $1,000 reward to find Smokey Bear — or at least a 6-foot-tall reflective aluminum sign of the iconic “Only you can prevent wildfires” bruin.
The bear-nappers stole the sign in the Town of Caledonia in Columbia County (north of Madison) during the past two to three weeks. The landowner and the local emergency fire warden are hoping to get this valuable public information sign back in service.
Anyone with information on the missing sign is asked to contact the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office at (608) 742-4166, Crime Stoppers at (800) 293-8477 or their local Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources conservation warden. Callers are eligible for a reward for up to $1,000 for leading to the recovery of the stolen sign along with prosecution of the thief.
When a roundup of rain or snowfall totals is listed after a Northland storm, it’s rare to see a number from Superior.
It’s because we hate Superior, right? No. We love our sister by the unsalted sea.
The National Weather Service relies on volunteer weather spotters for most of its snowfall reports from around the Northland. There are some spotters in Superior, but they happen not to be available to send reports for the early morning rain and snow roundups.
The new blanket of snow we were forecast to receive overnight should set up some great conditions for Saturday’s free candlelight ski on the Afterhours Trail in Northwestern Wisconsin’s Brule Rive State Forest.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources reports that the event, held from 5-9 p.m., will include a bonfire, hot apple cider, a gas grill for cooking and a warming shelter — and two miles of candle-lit ski trails, of course.
The Afterhours Trail is located off U.S. Highway 2 just west of Brule, or about 30 miles east of Superior.
Whether you hit the trails in Brule or get outdoors at some other spot in the Northland, this weekend should feel like a heat wave after our recent cold weather. Highs on Saturday are forecast to reach the teens — above zero — and on Sunday we may see highs in the mid- to upper 20s.
How about Chequamegon (SHA-wah-mah-gahn)-Nicolet National Forest?
The State Cartographer’s Office is here to help.
It has released a new online map called Pronounce Wisconsin that allows users to click on a place name and hear how it is pronounced. More than 1,700 Wisconsin places are on the map, according to our connections at the Associated Press.
Pronounce Wisconsin was created jointly by the cartographer’s office as well as Wisconsin Radio Network reporter Jackie Johnson. She created MissPronouncer.com more than six years ago that lists hard-to-pronounce names of places, elected officials, parks and other Wisconsin-specific phenomena.
The new map allows users to run a computer mouse over a place name to hear how it sounds.
Motorists in West Virginia have the highest likelihood of slamming into a deer of drivers in any of the 50 states, according to State Farm Insurance Co.
State Farm reported Tuesday that, according to an analysis of its claims, West Virginia drivers have a 1-in-40 chance of hitting a deer within the next year. It’s the sixth straight year West Virginia has topped the list.
Pick your poison, Hawaii. Residents there are the least likely to hit a deer, about 1 in 6,801, or about the same as being hit by lightning.
Minnesota drivers have the eighth-highest likelihood of striking a deer on the road, about 1 in 79.7 (down from sixth place last year). Wisconsin is just ahead, in seventh place, at 1 in 78.7.
South Dakota moved from third to second on the list at 1 in 68; Iowa (1 in 71.9) drops from second to third; and Michigan (1 in 72.4) is a close fourth, jumping one position from fifth. Pennsylvania (1 in 76) drops one spot to fifth.
And in a poll released by deer, deer on roads still are more likely to be hit by a motor vehicle than deer that are not on roads.
Our buddy Mike Simonson of Wisconsin Public Radio recently marveled at the beauty of the fall colors in northern Wisconsin. But he came back from his trek to Ashland and Sawyer counties with a warning: The vibrant reds and oranges won’t last much longer.
Take advantage now because droughts in some areas gave way to a less-exciting brown.
“They’re in full bloom and they’re falling; all different colors, from green to blood red, oranges,” Greg Haberman, owner of the Wannigan Resort in Winter, Wis., told Simonson.
Colors are peaking in Hayward, too.
“I thought it would be not as good because of the dry, but I think they’re probably just as pretty as they were,” Marietta Higgins, who owns Nelson Lake Lodge, told Simonson. “We’ve got the real brilliant reds and the pinky reds; it’s beautiful.”
Send fall color photos to email@example.com and we’ll add them to a photo gallery on duluthnewstribune.com.