Brad Williams

Brad Williams

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from U-W-La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area.  Brad writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse.  He's been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.  

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Monday - January 9, 2017 11:14 pm

Health dept. offering radon test kits for $10

Almost 40 percent of La Crosse County homes are at risk.

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La Crosse Dem. Jill Billings talks about some of its plans.

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Friday - January 6, 2017 4:32 pm

Backlog? What backlog? Courts were busy in 1976

In January of 1976, La Crosse District Attorney Ed Nix complained that the county courts were being clogged with too many cases waiting to be resolved.  But a committee of the county bar association studied the complaint, and found the backlog only existed in traffic court, where about one thousand cases were pending.  There was a minority report suggesting that Nix was partly right, that there were about 200 lingering criminal cases in Branch 2 when he became D-A the previous year, but those had been cleared up. 
 
Local government watchers could keep an eye on La Crosse City Hall without having to leave their homes.  U-W-L began broadcasting TV coverage of La Crosse city council meetings live on Teleprompter cable channel 4, adding visuals to the existing public radio broadcasts of the twice-monthly meetings.  Those council sessions would often last until midnight or later. 
 
And Reader's Digest magazine was getting credit for helping Americans...digest.  An article in the magazine touting the health benefits of bran cereal apparently led the sales of bran products to double nationwide in less than two years.  Before that magazine report, the only popular variety of bran cereal in stores was raisin bran.  Now that was a scoop...or maybe two scoops, 41 years ago, 1976.
 

Friday - January 6, 2017 10:32 am

Salvation Army ends longstanding no drink policy

Policy in place for decades pulled after discussions with police, hospitals

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Thursday - January 5, 2017 8:55 am

Expanding the festgrounds, 16 years ago.

In September of 2001, Oktoberfest organizers were speaking publicly about plans to enlarge the southside festgrounds.  Those plans included a cultural arts building, and extending the festival area east of the main gate on 2nd Street.  Those planned changes didn't happen. 

The expansion was introduced the same week that parade marshals for the 2001 fest were announced.  Retired UW-L football coach Roger Harring was the Maple Leaf parade marshal, while the Torchlight Parade was led by Western Tech instructor Ken Wing.

Even though the Bobcats basketball team had gone out of business that year, the La Crosse Center still wanted a new basketball floor to replace the original one used since the Center opened in 1980.

 

 

 

Wednesday - January 4, 2017 4:26 pm

A jail break foiled...55 years ago.

Three prisoners in the Monroe County jail were caught hiding saw blades which they used to try cutting through a door to a fire escape.  The men didn't actually make it out of the jail.  The leader of the plot was a cook accused of 1st degree murder in the killing of his boss, a restaurant owner. 
 
La Crosse was opening its new parking ramp to customers.  The Market Square ramp only had a couple of levels, but the 380 stalls provided more than twice the parking spaces available on the old surface lot. 
 
The Packers had just shut out the Giants, 37-0, on New Year's Eve to win their first NFL championship in 17 years, and their first under Coach Vince Lombardi.  At the movies, you could see 'Pocketful of Miracles' with Bette Davis, and the Western comedy 'The Second Time Around' starring Debbie Reynolds and Andy Griffith. 

Fifty-five years ago, 1962, Yesterday in La Crosse.
 


 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday - January 3, 2017 9:04 pm

Two theaters under one roof? A new idea in 1972.

In January of 1972, the Marcus Theater group, which owned the Rivoli, was planning to build a twin-screen theater on Ward Avenue between the Pizza Hut and the New Villa restaurant.  The Cinema Theaters would be completed by June.  Not long after that, another twin theater would open on King Street downtown.  The Cinema has several more screens at its Ward Avenue building now...and the New Villa was torn down years ago to make way for theater parking.
 
President Richard Nixon was getting ready to run for a second term.  Nixon told Dan Rather of CBS that he would announce his plans by mid-January, but hinted that he would run again with Spiro Agnew staying on as his vice-president.  The president led the list of most admired men in a Gallup poll at the end of 1971.  Billy Graham came in second, followed by Ted Kennedy.  Also in the top 10...Ralph Nader, the Pope, and Bob Hope.
 
Fans of TV game shows had plenty of choices on daytime TV early in '72.  Those shows included The Dating Game, The Newlywed Game, Password, Jeopardy, Hollywood Squares, Let's Make a Deal, and The Who, What. or Where Game.  Forty-five years ago, Yesterday in La Crosse.
 

The county had zero traffic deaths in all of 2016.

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Thursday - December 29, 2016 9:02 am

Yesterday 12/28/16

Yesterday 12/28/16
 
 
Rotary Lights gets an extension...10 years ago, Yesterday in La Crosse.
 
By 2006, the Rotary Lights display in Riverside Park had become a holiday tradition for just over a decade. That year, the La Crosse Park Board voted to add five years to the Rotary's lease on the park at Christmas-time. The vote happened during the summer, shortly before Riverfest. Among the headline performers at the festival in '06 would be the bands Caroline's Spine and Better Than Ezra.
 
There was talk at City Hall of turning the Naval Reserve site on Green Bay Street into a La Crosse city park. That was described as a last resort by Alderman Tom Sweeney. The Navy had moved out, but the building was still there. The old training facility was torn down eventually, and the lot is still empty today.
 
Late in 2006, Joe Gow was preparing to come to La Crosse, to succeed Doug Hastad as chancellor of U-W-L. Hastad left La Crosse to run Carroll College in Waukesha. Gow was hired away from his job as interim president of Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln.
 
NBC had just begun showing Sunday Night Football that fall, and also aired the high school football drama 'Friday Night Lights.' And ABC had a new hit with 'Ugly Betty.' Ten years ago, 2006, Yesterday in La Crosse.