The Northwest Herald: link to actual article here. This is our local paper (and local stupidity it seems too). I sent the article to the Obscure Store and reading room , who are usually are laden with Wisconsin oddities (our neighboring state - had to get a comment in). Ha.
I love reading the paper every night after work. Make a drink, turn on radio in the garage, and take a seat on the picnic table. Read.
We've had some entertaining news lately; a FORMER FISHING GUIDE TURNED vegan teacher trying to change the middle school menu (before he was suspended), a mother complaining it was too hot in the classroom for her son "Michael" and wanted air conditioning installed in every classroom in the school (which would budget out at about 7 million dollars) - which prompted other letters stating the fact that we have on average, only about 10 days a year where it is really uncomfortable in the heat. And that Michael was probably a "momma's boy". And she is an "IDIOT". Ha.
The most unbelievable was the story below. Nails in mulch installed around the playground at a day care center: (everything below is copied from the paper)
A sampling of the thousands of nails and other things found in the mulch laid in the playground of the Woodstock Early Learning center. (Kristy Ann Mann photo)
Day care center, mill sharply divided over nail-filled mulch
By JENN WIANT - firstname.lastname@example.org
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WOODSTOCK – When Melissa Norman learned that maintenance workers had found thousands of nails in the playground mulch at the Woodstock Early Learning Center, she was skeptical.
Norman, the assistant director of the child care center near Routes 47 and 120 in Woodstock, also has a 3-year-old daughter who goes to the center and plays on the playground twice a day.
“To knowingly provide this to a child care center, I just couldn’t believe it,” she said.
The mulch came from G & C Mill, a 10-year-old lumber and mulch company on Route 14 between Woodstock and Harvard.
Owner Cindy Ojeda said she had recommended a cheaper natural mulch that was not made from reprocessed wood, but the maintenance director for Woodstock Christian Life Services, which includes the Early Learning Center, chose a cedar mulch made from recycled wood that Ojeda said could include nails that would not be caught by a magnet.
“I would never have put that cedar mulch [on the playground],” Ojeda said. “But this is my customer. Who am I to tell a customer no? If you choose this product, I’m not going to say, ‘Don’t buy my mulch.’ ”
LeeAnn Atwood, spokeswoman for Woodstock Christian Life Services, said Director of Maintenance Rick Madsen had specifically asked for a mulch without nails and had not been told that the cedar mulch could contain nails. He chose cedar because it would help to keep bugs away, she said.
The Early Learning Center ordered 40 yards of cedar mulch and kept adding 20 yards at a time until it was up to 120 yards. Ojeda asked why the center did not complain until four days after the project was complete.
Atwood said the mulch originally was spread by a machine, so maintenance workers did not notice the nails right away. When a maintenance worker showed Madsen a handful of what appeared to be aluminum nails Sept. 5, he found it unusual but did not yet think it was a problem, Atwood said.
As more truckloads were dropped off during the next two days, workers collected nearly 3,000 nails, Atwood said. Madsen called Ojeda to complain the following Monday, Sept. 10.
“She was really unwilling to cooperate and help us in any way,” Atwood said.
Ojeda said it was too late to take the mulch back or give a refund: She already had spent more than $1,000 to have the mulch processed and delivered, and was out about $3,000 worth of product.
A local group that did not want its name released has offered to provide free mulch for the playground, which should open again in about a week, Atwood said. For now, a six-foot-tall pile of woodchips and nails sits in the Early Learning Center parking lot. Jim Tomasello of Tomasello’s Landscaping in Cary has offered to remove the pile for a reduced cost, but he is having trouble finding a place to take it.
“Nobody wants it,” Tomasello said. “We’ve tried giving it away, but nobody will take it because of the nails in it.”
Mulch made from reprocessed wood rarely is used unless is it colored because the dry wood holds color well, said Tomasello, whose company sells mulch. But even for recycled mulch, the number of nails that the Early Learning Center workers found seemed excessive, he said.
“I was very shocked that [G & C Mill] sold them something that was construction debris and had nails in it, and they dumped it right on the playground, knowing that kids were going to be playing in this,” Tomasello said.
Maintenance workers also found rusty hinges, rocks, pieces of aluminum cans, and chunks of plastic.
No one was hurt by the nails and other debris because the playground, which is used by about 140 children ages 4 to 12, had been closed while the mulch was being replaced, Atwood said.
Stacey Dougherty, who takes her three young children to the Early Learning Center each morning, said she was shocked to learn about the nails in the mulch on Wednesdaysept. 19.
“I was very surprised that a company would risk the safety of especially children, but people in general, for the profitability of their company,” Dougherty said.