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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Wednesday - August 23, 2017 12:55 pm

La Crosse welcomes new paddleboat "America"

New paddlewheeler one of 5 boats coming to La Crosse this summer


The UW-L football Eagles took the NCAA Div. III championship in the fall of 1992, seven years after becoming national champions in the NAIA.  Coach Roger Harring won a "Coach of the Year" award from Chevrolet.  La Crosse took the title in the Stagg Bowl game by beating the "Presidents" of Washington and Jefferson College from Washington, Pa.  Final score, 16-12.

In pro football, the Vikings won the NFC central division in '92, finishing two games ahead of the Packers.  It was Coach Mike Holmgren's first season at Green Bay, and the season when Brett Favre began his reign as the starting QB for the Packers.

La Crosse area bands got together that August for the first tribute concert for long-time WKBH DJ Lindy Shannon.  And the piano duo of Dallas Weekley and Nancy Arganbright were presenting a concert at UW-L, while preparing to do the same program at the Kennedy Center in Washington the following month, 1992, 25 years ago, Yesterday in La Crosse.



Total solar eclipse in La Crosse area in 2099 


In 1964, local radio stations broadcast lots of high school sports.  WKTY in La Crosse was broadcasting the WIAA basketball playoffs at all four levels, from regional to state.  In those days, all the schools in Wisconsin competed in one class, with only eight teams making it to Madison.  The tournament broadcasts were sponsored by Standard Oil. 

The Beatles dominated the record charts in '64, but it took a while for Americans to get to know them.  The La Crosse Tribune ran a front-page photo of the Fab Four during the group's first visit to the U.S., but only Ringo was identified correctly. 

The Trib often featured local surveys of teenagers, to see what kind of entertainment they liked.  One poll in 1964 found that the favorite movie stars of teens were 60-year-old Cary Grant and 39-year-old Doris Day.

In the midst of Beatlemania, the Sawyer Auditorium brought Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians to town, appealing to an older audience.  The choral group's concert started at 8:30 p.m., with tickets costing $2 to $4...53 years ago, 1964, Yesterday in La Crosse.





The new plans for enlarging the La Crosse Center are getting good reviews from members of the city park board.

Center officials and project consultants briefly showed the park board the latest designs for the proposed $40-million renovation.

That design calls for a new ballroom to be built above Front St., extending the civic center into Riverside Park to take advantage of the Mississippi River view.

Rebuilding the west side of the La Crosse Center would be a "very cool thing" for the city, said Steve Carlyon. The La Crosse Parks and Rec. director also got a look at the proposed designs.

Center director Art Fahey said the new design would provide cover for loading docks, and other features to the rear of the La Crosse Center, that are out in the open now.

Center board president Brent Smith says the new construction is intended to make the riverfront a greater focus for people visiting the building.

"We think maybe has been a little underutilized in the past," Smith said.

Park board members generally approved of the designs they saw with Marvin Wanders of the board saying the renovation would highlight the center's role as the "people's gathering place."


This year, jail has seen 13 fights, almost 100 suicide threats 


Thursday - August 17, 2017 8:42 am

Mr. Burke became a Father, 42 years ago

Raymond Burke returned home to La Crosse in the summer of 1975, just after being ordained as a priest in Rome by Pope Paul VI.  Father Burke was 27 years old, and was named associate rector of St. Joseph the Workman Cathedral.  Within 20 years, Burke would become the bishop of the La Crosse Diocese, and later, the archbishop of St. Louis.  Now, he's a cardinal.

Most people didn't need to use a wood heater during that August, but Menard's on the Causeway had them on sale for $209.  A gas range at Menard's sold for $136.

At the Towne House in La Crescent, you could get ribs or fish on Friday night for only $2.50.  The John Lincoln Trio played country music at the Towne House that August, and the Minnesota Ranch Hands performed at the Red Sails Resort in what an advertisement called "Brices" Prairie.  There were no bands playing at Henry's Drive-In at 7th and King in La Crosse, now the site of Pizza Doctors.  But Henry's did sell a half-chicken dinner for $1.59.  Buy a Pepsi with your chicken, and you could keep the Looney Tunes souvenir glass.  That's all, folks...42 years ago, 1975, yesterday in La Crosse.


Startup might need $100 million and years to get flying 


In August of 1977, Medary was proceeding with a bond sale that would allow the town to operate its own sewage treatment system, just as Dayton-Hudson was getting ready to build a shopping mall off Highway 16.  The town pursued its own plant even after the proposal was turned down by the DNR, which wanted Medary to connect to the La Crosse sewer system.
Marine reservists training at Volk Field took part in a hostage rescue exercise, designed to resemble a raid in Uganda the previous year which freed the passengers on a hijacked airplane.  The exercise began at 4:30 a.m., and in less than an hour, the rescuers had killed the mock terrorists and freed the hostages.  The reservists who played the terrorists then cleaned up the mess.  
Montgomery Ward had a 'trainload sale' of new record albums...featuring releases by Peter Frampton, Heart, and Kiss.  
And 40 years ago this week, we heard about the passing of a famous performer...known as a movie star who sang in many of his films.  He was instantly recognizable just by his first name.  Comedian Groucho Marx was 86 when he died, three days after Elvis Presley, in August, 1977...yesterday in La Crosse.

Said another guy threw stolen bike into river 


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