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Dear Neighbor,

I am honored to represent you in the state capitol. Below, you will find updates from the capitol and around western Wisconsin. Please feel free to reach out to me with your legislative and state agency concerns. 

In addition to this newsletter, you may follow me on Facebook and Twitter for regular updates.

I ask that you help share this newsletter with your friends and family. An informed community is a strong community, and I appreciate the opportunity to discuss our communities' concerns. 




- Sen. Patty Schachtner

Community Engagement is Key

The State Senate is in session this week and with a long to-do list that we need to complete for the people of Wisconsin, I am looking forward to it. I have put forth several bills this session to address issues from mental health resources to the spread of CWD in our area. As we consider some important bills this week, I will always fight for the needs of the people in Northwestern Wisconsin- and I hope you’ll continue to engage in this fight as well.

Last week, I joined Rep. Gae Magnafici in speaking at Frederic High School on the importance of community engagement in our work. I have already responded to over 9,000 constituent contacts and I hope that you will continue to engage with my office throughout the rest of this session to share your ideas, stories, and insights. I’m working to ensure that our communities are no longer left behind and your voice is important to me.


Secretary Pfaff in Western Wisconsin

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Last week, I hosted Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection Secretary Brad Pfaff for a visit to our neck of the woods!

We visited facility and staff at New Richmond High School for a tour of their Career and Technical Education areas as well as their SOAR education center. We also had the privilege of joining UW-River Falls Chancellor Dean Van Galen, Provost Dr. David Travis, and Dean Dale Gallenberg for tours of the university’s Agricultural Engineering Technology department and the Dairy Learning Center.

I’m proud of these great educational resources that Western Wisconsin has to offer. From high school to higher education, the students of our area are well served by these facilities and educators. Technical and agricultural educational programs are such important components of these institutions. I’m committed to continuing to support these efforts to benefit our students, local economy, and future workforce.

Substance Abuse Prevention Month

October is National Substance Abuse Prevention month. We can only prevent further substance abuse if we come together as a community and reduce the stigma around addiction and mental health. Over the past year, I have hosted multiple events across Northwestern Wisconsin intended to do just that.

We have been screening “Written Off,” a documentary film about one man’s battle with addiction. Matt Edwards, a Wisconsin native, became addicted to prescription opioids after a toe surgery. He went on to abuse pills and other drugs, cycling between using, quitting, withdrawal, and relapse. After Matt tragically passed away in 2010, his mother discovered that he had been keeping detailed daily journals about his life and addiction. Just as any of us would, he used his diary to complain about his job, daydream about potential romances, and simply reflect on the routines of everyday life. Sadly, his routine usually included substance abuse. His diary entries can seem bleak but others glimmer with flashes of hope for recovery and times of joy. This complex experience of living with addiction is not unique.

Through our screenings, we have had the privilege of listening to the stories of people in recovery, families that have experienced addiction, and the healthcare and law enforcement professionals that work to reduce substance abuse. These open and honest conversations help make community connections and reduce the stigma around substance abuse and addiction. Removing the stigma is a critical component to facing this issue head-on and developing comprehensive solutions for prevention and treatment. Addiction is not a moral failing, but instead often an issue of intertwined trauma, dependence, and mental health issues.

If you need help, call 2-1-1 or 833-944-4673 or text your zip code to 898211.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

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October is Breast Cancer Prevention Month and with 1 in 8 women being diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime, it’s important that we continue to spread awareness.  Lack of physical activity, poor diet, drinking alcohol, and being overweight or obese are all risk factors that may increase a person’s risk of developing breast cancer. In many cases, genetics play a role in addition to environmental factors.

While prevention is key, early detection can save a life. 62% of breast cancer cases are diagnosed at a localized stage, which has a 5 year survival rate of 99%. Early detection of localized stages is possible through monthly self-exams and regular mammograms. For women 40 years and older or those with risk factors for breast cancer, mammograms every one to two years are recommended. Adult women of all ages should conduct monthly self-exams. 40% of diagnosed breast cancers are detected by women feeling a lump, so make a pledge this month to conduct a self-exam or schedule your next mammogram!


District Events


Fall Foliage Hike- Sandrock Cliffs Trail

Sunday, October 20th; 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Sandrock Cliffs

15975 State Hwy 70

Grantsburg, WI 54840

Enjoy the fall foliage along the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway with the National Park Service and the St. Croix River Association. On this hike, you will enjoy views of large pine trees and see forest regeneration first hand. Come explore a dynamic ecosystem that you can come back to again and again.

This 3 mile round-trip, moderate difficulty hike will follow a maintained trail with a few small hills, ending with a beautiful view of the Sandrock Cliffs overlooking the St. Croix River. Please wear good walking shoes or hiking boots. Dress in layers for cool autumn weather. Meet at the Sandrock Cliffs Trailhead at Highway 70 Landing 5 miles west of Grantsburg, WI.

Questions? Call the St. Croix River Visitor Center at 715-483-2274



Ladies Night Out

Thursday, October 17th; 3 p.m. – 8 p.m

Downtown Menomonie

Menomonie, WI 54751


Celebrate fall with a fun evening out with your friends! Visit downtown Menomonie on Thursday, October 17th for the popular event: Ladies Night Out. Come dressed up as your favorite character! There will be a window decorating contest put on by participating businesses, vote and enter to win a prize!

Whether you are interested in boutiques, locally made artisan items, antiques, an independent book seller, games, visiting a spa, a unique wine bar, sports apparel, or finding the perfect meal; we have it in downtown Menomonie.

Enter to win nearly $1,000 in prizes by visiting participating locations! Prizes will be displayed in the window of Town and Country Antiques.

For more information contact Downtown Menomonie at or call us at 715-235-2666.



100 Year Celebration with Somerset American Legion Post 111

Saturday, October 12th; 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Somerset American Legion Post 111

464 County Road VV

Somerset, WI 54025


The public is invited to the American Legion’s Centennial Celebration!

Explore the Legion’s history beginning in 1919 with photos, artifacts, history boards and speakers. Free BBQ starts @ noon with Competition Grill Team “Smoking Hooves” - ALL Donations go to designated charities. Live music from 3PM - 5PM - Roger Allen Band, door prizes all day, and a bacon raffle featuring Greg’s Meats of Hampton, MN


St. Croix

Hudson Fall Craft Show

October 12th and 13th; 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.


Hudson House Grand Hotel

1616 Crest View Dr.

Hudson, WI 54016


We've added a fall colors show to this popular location - the timeless Hudson House Grand Hotel. Get ready for fall and the holiday season - enjoy free coffee, treats and a cash bar while you shop our awesome craft and vendor booths - everything from A to Z….and more. Great location in Hudson just off I-94.