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This just in blog, by Dan Plutchak, editor

As the presidential candidates crisscrossed Wisconsin this past week ahead of Tuesday’s presidential primary, they’ve pitched all the things they would do as president.

But, as you head to the polls to vote, remember any president can do very little without the cooperation of Congress.

It’s the role of the House and Senate to pass legislation. The president’s only duty is to either approve the law with his or her signature, or reject it by veto.

When Donald Trump says he’ll force Mexico to pay for a wall between our two counties, or when Ted Cruz says he’ll step up policing in Muslim neighborhoods, it’s unclear what sort of legislation Congress could consider, making those campaign promises little more than talking points.

No matter who you vote for Tuesday, their proposals won’t go very far unless voters also pick a majority in the House of Representatives and at least 60 agreeable senators.

Lykeminded blog, by Jim Lyke

Don’t mess with Bessie.

That message comes through loud and clear from certain locals whenever Janesville’s iconic cow gets adorned with anything from high heels to pink spots to Mexican headwear.

So I imagine a segment of the population is none too pleased about the recent announcement that Bessie is transitioning from a Guernsey to a Holstein.

Apparently cows, unlike leopards, can change their spots.

WHITEWATER -- High school’s biggest social event for juniors and seniors often takes the biggest chunk out of their -- or their parents’ --  wallets. 

(Scroll to bottom for directions, dates, hours)

Proms hold memories, but their expenses add up quickly: tickets, dinner, flowers, hairstyles, manicures. And the big-ticket items, like a new suit or a dress, can easily cost $200.

Not everyone can afford to spend that kind of money.

JANESVILLE -- There is little disagreement among the seven candidates for Janesville City Council on the most vexing issues facing the city, and many of the candidates agree on solutions.

But on several important issues, candidates differ sharply on the approach they would take if elected.

JANESVILLE -- Increased communication and improved transparency have been the overriding theme of this spring’s campaign for Janesville School Board.

Candidates returned to the issue time and again during a candidate forum March 16, 2016 at the Janesville Educational Services Center moderated by Laura Boettcher of the Janesville League of Women Voters and co-sponsored by the Janesville Area Council Parent Teacher Association.

Thursday, 10 March 2016 16:30

When the circus stayed in Janesville

JANESVILLE MESSENGER -- One late April evening in 1874, two men walking along the banks of the Rock River in Janesville near the Monterey Dam noticed a 6-foot-long mud-colored, stationary mass jutting up from the water’s surface.

One of the men got into a rowboat and drew near to the object. When he hit it with an oar, the mass lifted a scaly head out of the water, small eyes flashing. It snapped its long, toothy jaws a couple of times before it disappeared into the river.

MESSENGER -- A lifelong reader, Ethel Himmel now shares her love of books with fellow mystery buffs through monthly meetings of the Mystery Book Club she began at the Milton Public Library.

Since 2002, participants have pored over more than 145 mysteries ranging from popular favorites like Stieg Larsson’s “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” to classics like Agatha Christie’s “Death on the Nile,” and authors that have included Michael Crichton, Dan Brown and Tony Hillerman.

The former deputy director of the La Crosse Public Library, Himmel is a semiretired library consultant at Himmel and Wilson, a firm she founded more than 20 years ago with her husband, Bill Wilson, who is a former Wisconsin state librarian.

Friday, 26 February 2016 09:50

Chordhawks carry on a passion for singing

BELOIT -- Even though John Kalkirtz has been a member of the Rock Valley Chapter of the Badger Chordhawks Chorus for more than 20 years, he still considers himself the "new kid on the block."

Kalkirtz of Beloit said he enjoys being involved with the chorus and sharing his love for barbershop singing with others.

Wednesday, 24 February 2016 16:26

Photos: Chordhawks Chorus evolves with the times

BELOIT -- Even though John Kalkirtz has been a member of the Rock Valley Chapter of the Badger Chordhawks Chorus for more than 20 years, he still considers himself the "new kid on the block." The group performs at several events throughout the year.

"We're starting to get a merger of a lot of styles of a cappella singing. We're in the process of having some of our younger guys doing some beat boxing, because that's a cappella." STORY

JANESVILLE MESSENGER -- For Tim Owens, going out in the community and helping others breaks up the monotony of a regular school day.

Owens, 15, of Edgerton, is a sophomore at Milton Edgerton Clinton Alternative School in Milton. The school offers a community service class in which students visit different locations throughout the week to work on projects. The students may perform tasks at The Gathering Place community center, Doug’s Tree Moving, the Humane Society of Southern Wisconsin or Rock Haven nursing home. The students also may work with elementary school students during their gym classes, perform seasonal work or host blood drives as part of the community service class.

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