The Syttende Mai Royalty had a blast at the spaghetti-eating contest at North Hudson's Pepper Fest! Submitted photo
The Syttende Mai Royalty had a blast at the spaghetti-eating contest at North Hudson's Pepper Fest! Submitted photo

WOODVILLE, WI -- As stated in the three parts of this review series “Looking back at 2016,” some people are glad to see it go, for others it was a good year and are sad to see last year end. And for many it was just another year that flew by and they are wondering where it went.

Here at the Woodville Leader we will try to answer that question as we look back further at 2016 with a review of some of the many stories from the 52 weeks of the last year. This is the final part of our review “Looking back at 2016.”

Starting this week’s review recalling a story from the September 1, 2016 Woodville Leader about “Stockman’s celebrates 70 years” - Owner Merry Stockman Schoenke reflects on the history and legacy of her family's business, by Katie Chaffee. Stockman’s Farm Supply & More, just south of I-94 on Highway 128 in Wilson, doesn’t look much like a typical large retailer. Still, the name of Walmart founder Sam Walton comes up in stories about how Stockman’s came to be. That story, told by Merry Stockman Schoenke, who now owns and runs the business, encompasses more than 70 years of history.

Back in 1984, Merry was in high school, living on the family horse farm right where Stockman’s is now. She and her older sister Kris grew up in the house there.

Rex, the girls' father, was operating a store in Spring Valley. It had been named Stockman’s Variety after his father Harry had started it in 1951. When Rex took over from his father, he changed the name to Rex’s Big “V” and began harboring big dreams for his little store.

Merry remembers Rex as a consummate salesman, always staging events and promotions to boost sales. This high-energy approach, coupled with Rex’s commitment to quality products, was a recipe for success. The store prospered.

“My father never did anything in a small way,” Merry remembers. “I think in his younger years, he had visions of becoming another Sam Walton!”

We also read in that edition of the Woodville Leader in the “Queen’s Corner” that the Royalty attended many local celebrations according to Jessica Moor, Syttende Mai Queen

She along with First Princess Karissa Danielson, and Second Princess Megan Suckow attended North Hudson Pepper Fest, Pickles of the Caribbean in Boyceville, Cart Ox Days in Star Prairie, and Rutabaga in Cumberland.

Queen Jess reported, “We attended the North Hudson Pepper Fest celebration. The Tea was early morning Saturday, August 20. Many royalties attended the Tea. It was rainy and muddy under the tent, but that didn't stop us from getting knighted.

At the parade, we made the best of the time from after the Tea to the parade, playing games like rock, paper, scissors. The parade was cold and rainy, but it was fun to see all the people who were happy we came – and it didn't hurt being in front of Orange Leaf.

Later that day, we participated in the spaghetti eating contest, with our fourth person being Pepper Fest candidate Abbie Weller.”

In the October 20 edition we learned the exciting news that the “Marching Blackhawks take 1st place at State Marching Band competition,” as reported by Marla Butler, B-W Band Boosters

She informed us that on Saturday, October 15, Baldwin-Woodville’s Marching Blackhawks took the field at Perkins Stadium of UW-Whitewater in Class A.

The weekend started with a final home practice on Friday, as there was no school. They then loaded coach buses and traveled to Milton High School, where they spent the weekend. Saturday morning, they were up by 8am, and soon took the field for their final practice of the season. About 2pm, the group loaded those buses for the trip to the UW-Whitewater campus.

Class A competition began with Whitewater at 2:30pm. At 4pm our own Marching Blackhawks made their appearance with the best performance of the season.

Marching Blackhawks brought home: Best Musical Presentation, Best Visual Presentation, and for the 10th year, Best Percussion. And 1st place with a score of 79.85 was Baldwin-Woodville’s Marching Blackhawks.

This great achievement presented them with an Encore performance at 9:45pm that night. Their Encore performance again was just as great and this one had no pressure but just to make their best better.

When the Marching Blackhawks returned home on Sunday afternoon, they were greeted at the Woodville exit by the United Fire and Rescue Fire truck and ambulance. The parade began there with 2 buses and Marching Blackhawks semi-trailer and drumline trailer. It ran through Woodville, down Rose Lane into Baldwin and a short tour around Baldwin down Main Street before making to a large group waiting at Baldwin-Woodville High School. Smiles and hugs for many and a great speech by Director Adam Bassak finished the trip.

In the November 10, 2016 Woodville Leader you read about: “Annual Halloween Festival in Woodville is fun day for all.” It tried to rain a bit before the Halloween Costume Contest on Saturday, October 29, but it didn’t discourage the 450 children and their families from turning out for the 15th annual Halloween Festival at the United Fire and Rescue – Woodville Station, which by 1pm was full for the popular costume contest.

The St. Croix Volunteer League (the same group that hosts Santa’s Workshop and the annual Woodville Easter Egg Hunt) again hosted their popular Halloween Festival. The United Fire and Rescue – Woodville station was the place to be for games, activities, and face painting. There were also 400 free hotdogs, which were consumed along with chips, as well as the 250 cookies from the Spring Valley Bakery, and hundreds of glasses of lemonade that were drunk during the festival.

In addition to the face painting and games, kids could have a photo taken with the friendly Scarecrow (Suzy Helgeson), or visit with the fortuneteller (Sue Gilbertson); and many children competed in the ever-popular costume contest.

And lastly in the December 15, 2016 edition of the Woodville Leader we reported that “Woodville welcomed Santa & Mrs. Claus to the workshop for their annual visit” 

The Lions sponsored the Volunteer League event for seasonal joy with area kids. 

Santa arrived on a fire truck in Woodville for his visit to his Workshop last Saturday, December 10, 2016 where once again he and Mrs. Claus entertained approximately 350 happy children and their parents for the annual three-hour visit to town before Christmas. 

The Woodville Lions Club sponsored the St. Croix Area Volunteer League for this annual well-loved traditional holiday event at the Lions Den/Community Center in downtown Woodville that brings so much seasonal joy to the area kids. 

Santa (aka Mike Mahoney) has been coming to Woodville for longer than people in the Village of Woodville can remember, and here he was once more in 2016 with Mrs. Claus (aka Ruth Larson) to get the all-important “Letters to Santa” want lists from the good boys and girls in the community. 200 children sat on Santa’s lap for a chat and the opportunity to get a picture taken by mom or dad.

Part IV is the conclusion of this series, “Looking back at 2016,” hopefully it has rekindled some pleasant memories for you of the last year.