This was a year of changes and growth for the Poynette area. Construction began on the new elementary school. The local True Value Hardware store closed after its owner retired. Student athletes garnered awards, annual traditions continued and voters marked ballots.

So before getting too far into 2020, let’s take a look back at some of the top local stories from the last year.

January

  • The Poynette School Board approves the first portion of initial funding, an $18.8 million bond, for the $28.3 million referendum passed by voters in 2018.
  • The Poynette-Dekorra-Lowville Fire Commission introduces a new medical director, Jennifer Bahr.
  • The Department of Transportation holds a public meeting at Poynette Village Hall to discuss upcoming road work along U.S. Highway 51, which could happen as early as 2021.
  • The Poynette Village Board approves a new Mill Street project after residents spoke out against a $26,000 sidewalk addition.

February

  • The Lake Wisconsin Lions Club hosts its annual Eskimo Open at Remi’s Thirsty Moose.
  • A Columbia County special prosecutor determines there is insufficient evidence to prosecute former Poynette police officer Sam Yanke after an interaction he had with a woman in Poynette stirred controversy.
  • The Poynette Village Board approves a master plan work order with a consultant to begin plans to improve Jamieson Park.
  • The Dekorra Town Board reviews new town hall estimates.
  • The Poynette School District adds minutes to remaining school days for the 2018-19 year to make up for lost instruction due to snow days.
  • Poynette True Value Hardware closes after Randy Schultz decides to retire after 12 years.

March

  • Poynette’s Piggly Wiggly sees a change in ownership after Bob Saftig sells the grocery store to Brandon Sosinsky.
  • Curlers from the Arlington Curling Club win the annual Kraut Spiel.
  • The Poynette Police Department welcomes new hire Nathan Wendel.

April

  • The Friends of the MacKenzie Center holds the annual Maple Syrup Fest.
  • Whispering Pines Event Center opens for business.
  • The town of Dekorra elects a new chairperson, Kyle Knuteson. Voters choose Emma Falk-Brue and Chris Crawford to serve as supervisors.
  • Judainne Stronach is newly elected to the Poynette Village Board, while Doug Avery, Jerry Burke and Diana Kaschinske retain their seats.
  • Paul Sporle takes over as the Poynette American Legion Post 271 commander.
  • Research Products breaks ground on its new 100,000 square foot distribution center.
  • The Wisconsin Department of Transportation hosts a meeting at Poynette High School regarding an upcoming project to replace the I-39/90/94 Wisconsin River bridge.

May

  • Officials participate in a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Poynette Elementary School.
  • The Poynette Police Department arrests three juveniles after a possible school shooting threat was made through social media.
  • The Poynette American Legion Post 271 hosts its annual chicken dinner on Memorial Day.
  • Prevention and Response Columbia County holds a presentation at the local fire department where officials discuss drug use and trends in the area.

June

  • The Poynette Police Department hosts its annual Bike Rodeo.
  • For the first time in program history, the Poynette prep softball team claims back-to-back WIAA Division 4 state titles after blanking Campbellsport 4-0 in the championship game at Goodman Diamond in Madison. It is the fifth state crown for the Pumas, who have advanced to state 11 times. Pitcher Casey Fountain leads the way with a one-hitter in the title game.
  • Rock Solid Heating and Air celebrates its 10th anniversary.
  • The Poynette Village Board votes in support of allowing dogs in Jamieson Park.
  • The Poynette-Dekorra Fire and EMS Department puts on its annual pancake breakfast.

July

  • The Poynette-Dekorra Fire and EMS Department receives hands-on training with UW Med Flight.
  • The Poynette Indians Home Talent baseball team hosts its Fan Appreciation Night.

August

  • The annual Arlington Firemen’s Festival draws crowds.
  • Poynette’s Blessings in a Backpack program receives a $5,000 Bayer Fund grant.
  • The yearly Fishing for Families Bass Classic in Poynette raises funds to support the Badger Childhood Cancer Network.
  • The Dekorra Town Board opts to consider new options for its new town hall after three new board members joined the group after elections.
  • Dekorra Lutheran Church celebrates its 150th anniversary.

September

  • Local officials propose completing a traffic study for the North Street and Main Street intersection due to concerns about vehicle and foot traffic near the new elementary school.
  • The yearly Safety Fest attracts visitors to the Poynette-Dekorra Fire and EMS station, where a number of emergency service organizations showcased equipment and skills.
  • The Poynette-Dekorra Fire and EMS Department receives $28,068 from the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation.
  • The Poynette Area Chamber of Commerce hosts its yearly golf outing.
  • The Arlington Lions Club donates $1,000 to the PAD Parent Club for school supplies.

October

  • The Poynette Village Board appoints Steve Mueller to fill a trustee vacancy after Doug Avery resigned in August.
  • Aprilaire of Poynette donates $4,000 to the local Blessings in a Backpack program.

November

  • St. Thomas the Apostle Church celebrates its 50th anniversary.
  • The Poynette Village Board finalizes its 2020 budget, with a 0.67 percent increase over the 2019 tax levy.
  • Poynette junior Katelyn Chadwick ties the program record with a third-place finish at the WIAA Division 3 State Cross Country Meet in Wisconsin Rapids. In her third appearance at state, Chadwick earned the bronze medal after finishing in 19 minutes, 30.2 seconds. Senior Elias Ritzke, who was also making his third state appearance, turned in the program’s second highest finish after placing 13th on the boys’ side.
  • The Poynette School District receives a score of 76.9 out of 100, an “exceeding expectations” mark, on its Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction report card.
  • The Poynette Police Department hosts its yearly Stuff the Squad event at Piggly Wiggly.

December

  • Poynette School Board members and district administrators tour the new elementary school as construction continues.
  • The Poynette Village Board approves plans to make the North/South Trail a reality.
  • The Poynette School District hosts its yearly Holiday Splash.
  • The Poynette School Board opts to pursue selling the Arlington Early Learning Center.

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