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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2009 8:30 pm 
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Kerry Tobin wrote:
I don't think the reason we're loosing resorts and campgrounds is necessarily due to too few customers (although in the current economy, I doubt it's helping either). A big part of the problem is the combination of ridiculous taxes and everyone's desire to own a vacation home.

It now makes more financial sense to sell the property off as cabins or develop it than run a resort or campground. That's exactly what happened to Bit-o-the-North and the big campground in town.


True, between taxes and insurance costs, I don't know how many businesses stay afloat.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2009 10:49 pm 
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I think neup99 needs to take a vacation, do a little fishing and calm down.
There is no reason to get your shorts in a bundle. :?

Kerry is right, about the resorts going out of business. I know of two of them that decided that it was more profitable and a lot less work, to sell the cabins and the main buildings as condos and go out of business. I think with waterfront property at sky high prices they just can't resist temptation. If you look at the number of resorts and campgrounds in the area now compared to 20 or 30 years ago you wonder where all the tourists are going and where they are staying. Many are going further north where there still are a lot of resorts. It used to be that Tomahawk was an important vacation destination and now that is all moving about thirty miles north mainly because of the lose of these resorts and campgrounds. This has a big impact on all the business in the Tomahawk area.

As for the city getting involved in the campground business, I have stayed in several that were run either by the local city or the county. They hire a manager to take care of checkin's and do maint. It is only a 6 month job, but is great for some-one that is retired and wants to pick up a few extra $$$.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2009 12:17 am 
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Floyd Alvin wrote:
We added several full-hook sites to our already self-contained sites at our local Elks club. We attract traveling Elks clubs from all over the state. These people spend a small fortune into our local economy each year. And not just at the lodge.


It's interesting that you bring this up. My brother became a member of KofC and they are considerable supporters of camping as a membership. We stayed in the campground with them and I think there were 250 to 300 campers with this group. Is this something that you club does as well? This may be something that would help get the availability of the campground off to a good start if one were created.

Old Scout, thanks for the tip, but my shorts are doing fine. Besides, I'm not much for fishing or vacations. Just stating my opinion. Perhaps I should have heeded Mark Twain's advice....

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2009 2:02 am 
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I missed a little bit. This post has gone way off topic. In some ways bad, but in some ways good. The original idea was to have a very small amount of tent camp sites in Bradley park and to try and think of ideas to make it work. For the purpose of me having a place to go camping where I don't have to look at my neighbors. Which would include: no cutting of virign pine, having sites on the inside of the peninsula close to the entrance of the park, having maybe five sites max, posting a sign with large fine amounts for exceding the recomended total vehicle length(and kicking said people out at all hours of the night), making it impossible for large rvs to fit, police patroling the park every night (which they already do), and on and on and on and on... Not to think of ideas of how this wouldn't work. However, all sides of the story must be heard as it is only fair. Also, I forgot to mention that an RV dump station is only a couple blocks away on the way out.

Box plant island would be awsome for camping. Is it possible to get a permit to put an outhouse on an island that low? I do believe that it has to be pumped once a year. How will that get done? I know, I will put up a volunteer sign up sheet with some buckets. Deb will you head up this project for us? A bridge to box plant island, not so awsome. It is going to cost some major dough to construct a bridge high enough for boats to go under. A lot of boaters use this route as there is a large rock bar on the north side of the island. Further more, if allowing camping west of Sara park do you plan on kicking out the fire dept. A lot goes on there for fire school. Can anybody tell me where the next closest fire school is. A lot of surronding fire departments are small, and use the training that they get at Tomahawk fire school more that you will ever know. I believe that it does save lives. Where would they put their extra equipment that is stored down there? Could the fire department be put some where else? I here there are 22 acres just north of town with someone who is delinquent on their payments to the city. Dig a pond for water, put up a building for equipment, perfecto. Who is going to pay to move the dog park? I am sure one way or another, IT WILL COST THE CITY to move that thing. In case you haven't figured it out yet, I would be opposed to putting rv camping in west of Sara park. Why not put it on county land close to Tomahawk? How many thousands of acres of county land are there south of hwy "O"? How many thousands of acres of county forest land are there in Harrison? Howmany thousands of acres of county forest land are there by hwy "T"? How many thousands of acres of county forest land are there north and south of hwy 8? If you want "social camping" I say that we clear cut a couple 40's. One for rvs and the one next door for tent's. A third 40 can be for a more rustic tent or small motor home or popup with sites that have at least a 100' feet between them and with trees. If you build it near Tomahawk, they will come to town. I really think that this should be an option.

Camping doesn't have to be a buisness. The purpose of this thread is so that I can go camping close to Tomahawk and not have to look at my neighbors tent or whatever. This is my thread I can say what the purpose was.

Whatever though, I would rather see off topic comments that I don't like vrs. no comments at all.

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Last edited by asterix on Tue May 12, 2009 1:27 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2009 1:50 pm 
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asterix,
Just looking for a little peace and quiet. I'm with ya.
You bring up a lot of good points about whether city or county land should be used for a campground. The reason I would like to see the city parcel used is because it currently adds no value to the city's tax base. I'm not sure of the exact footage, but that's 20+ acres of lakefront property that for 99 percent of the year just sits idle. I'm not keen on some of the repercussions that would likely result, but when I see the city not able to amply support funding requests from organizations like the woman's domestic abuse group, HAVEN, and Lincoln County Humane Society, it frustrates me to say the least. I couldn't imagine a better time than now for the city to explore additional possible revenue streams. Be it camping or starting a tree nursery on the property.
I'm not sure if camping or investing in a campground would be worth the cost, but I do know the Tomahawk Regional Chamber of Commerce had a study conducted about five years ago that recommended Tomahawk look at increasing the opportunity. I don't have the study before me right now, but I recall it suggesting marketing be directed toward the 100,000 or so residents in the Wausau area.
If camping on the parcel was explored, I'm not sure the dog park would need to be moved to start off with. If the campground was successful and additional space was needed in the future, I know the group who had it installed left relocation out there as an option.
I just want to add a little more info that I'm aware of about some of the very important concerns you raised.
I know when the Tomahawk Dog Park was put in the Tomahawk Fire Department had no objections. The park closes during Fire School and during the Fall Ride. I think if campgrounds were built the same could be done to allow firefighters enough space to carry out training. This would certainly be something that would be addressed in any planning.
Also on bathrooms on Box Island, I know there has been talk on putting in a pit toilet that could be drained each winter when the lake is froze over.
The bridge is something that would certainly need to be addressed. The last thing I think anyone would want to see happen is to have it cause problems on Lake Mohawksin. I certainly would not want it infringing on me getting to my favorite walleye hole. That would have to be something that would need to be worked out in the architectural planning of the foot bridge. Maybe a high-rise with a troll living underneath.lol.
Make sure to email your thoughts and concerns to the email address I mentioned for the Tomahawk Public Works Department a few posts back. Even if we don't all share the same views, we can at least show we all want to see our parks maintained for the future.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2009 11:27 pm 
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We do seem to get off an tangents some times but by exploring all the possibilites, it helps to stimulate the mind and come up with ideas worth looking into. I personally think that the SARA park idea is a good one. It would take a lot of work to get it up and running but would be worth it in the long run. It has so many possibilites, you have a boat landing close by, fishing piers could be built, the beach is just down the road, and the hiking trail leaves from the park. All of this could be a real draw. Water lines would have to be run, elect. put in, and trees planted for shade and privacy. The bridge and the island could be phase II of the project. But as the old saying goes, you have to spend money to make money. Add a small convienence store with ice, soda, snacks, etc. and you are in business.

And don't forget you have Bradley Park just a stones throw away. Add the lookout tower in the park and you have a place that would be a real draw for the city.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 8:58 am 
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Not entirely sure we need a bridge to the island. Why not truly make the island a unique experience to Tomahawk and have people either bring a canoe or rent one from the local shops (I'm sure Tomahawk Sports Center would be more than happy to keep a few on hand). Or, if the City wanted to keep it all under control they could build a small storage unit that keeps the canoe's and paddles locked up and you could pick up a key from city hall.

Let Sara Park be the "typical" camping experience and leave the island as a rustic location... I'd be more inclined to use the island that way anyway.


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 10:38 am 
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I don't think a bridge is totally necessary. I can also maybe see a vendor (or Deb, our campground host) on sight that sold bait and ice, rented out boats, fishing tackle, maybe a few sundries. Another nice piece of revenue for the city.

Instead of spending money on the bridge I would like to see two or three fishing docks both on the island and off the shore side as well.

How about tent-cabins? The have them Yosemite and they are really popular.


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 11:35 am 
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So now the city is going to be a vendor too? I'm sure the bait shops, ice cream stores, etc. are all going to be very supportive...

Please remember that the city should be attempting to SUPPORT local businesses when possible, not compete with them. When a public service is not being provided adequately, then the city can step in, etc. I think the campground is OK and I support many communities that put in fiber if the local telecoms, etc. won't do it themselves.

It should not be the goal of government to make money. That's not the foundation our country was built on.


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 4:03 pm 
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Wow, Kerry! I didn't take you for a Republican. :mrgreen: I would agree with the canoe idea over the bridge. Also, for most items, utilizing the local businesses would probably be more appropriate, but I think their would also be room for charitable support as well, such as boy scouts selling firewood.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 6:56 pm 
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Canoe to the campsites is a good idea, however what about those that might be slightly physically impaired? Not able to navigate getting in or out of either a canoe or boat.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 7:54 pm 
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I was thinking some kind of pontoon boat/ferry system would solve that problem but this might also do the trick !!!

I imagine there will be all sorts of people who don't have the ability, or the desire, to do their own rowing or motoring back and forth from the Island to the shore of main land Tomahawk.

Charge, say, a buck a head. All proceeds go to the upkeep of the SARA Park / Box Island camping enterprise.

Of course...for a nominal and required extra fee...life vests, helmets, wet suits, insurance forms, liability waivers, emergency drills, and seat belts will be provided, worn, secured, read, signed, and notarized before leaving shore!!!

(Being just a little serious for a moment....lots of great ideas have been bantered back and forth in our 'brainstorming session' on the camping topic. I hope that someone will take some of these ideas to the Planning meeting next week.)


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 12:01 am 
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You know it's like a bunch of kids planning for a kool-aid stand at the fair. Everyone has got a real cool idea. But wow, some just aren't thought out. For instance who is going to sit 7 days a week all day with a pontoon boat waiting for someone to come and need to ferry over. A buck a head for the trip ??? How would you pay the pontoon driver. He'd better have some good novels to read because I'm sure it wouldn't be that busy. Now if you put a casino with a couple hundred slot machines over on that island maybe you could support the pontoon boat. That's it, we could put a casino over there !!! Yah, then we could sell kool-aid too !!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 12:11 am 
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By the way Kmart, I do know you were being just as facetious as I. I still love ya man !!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 1:44 am 
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Catfish... Look what the 'brainstorming' has come up with!!! My pontoon service scam combined with your casino scheme...it's perfect!!! Everybody wins, everybody has fun, the town prospers. I'm a little soft on your kool-aid idea though. Tried it as a kid and it just didn't fly. But keep the ideas coming.

And, please, my good friends call me Ken :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 8:26 am 
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As campground host, appointed by Floyd. I could easily run the pontoon too. I certainly wouldn't mind, perfect opportunity for getting Christmas knitting done. Of course a campground host does need accommodations, how will someone ever get a fifth wheel over to the island. Most campground host do have a fifth wheel, which is acceptable, they need more living space, it's not just about camping for them. (That's for neup99.) ~winkie smiley face~ j/k

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 10:12 am 
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As I try and get back on topic...

Deb, I think the accommodations being suggested at Sara park are going to be more appropriate for those who are unable or unwilling to manage a canoe.

We don't put roads into the Wilderness Areas for those unable or unwilling to walk or ride horses. They are considered more remote and are left that way intentionally. How many people go to the Boundary Waters every year to canoe and camp. This could be Tomahawk's "civil" version where you can still canoe back and take a shower, then hop in your car and go have dinner somewhere if you want.

I think the Boy Scouts selling firewood would be a great idea. I have no problem with local organizations providing services either. I just don't think the city should get involved in competing with the businesses that support the city in so many ways.


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 11:10 am 
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Try as you may Kerry, we'll never stay on topic. You should know better with this rowdy lot.

I understand that roads are not put into wilderness areas for those unable to access. However there are some walk-in only sites at state forest campgrounds that do have a paved path making them wheel chair accessible. What I was saying is that if the island is developed there does need to be some sort of access other than water, not just for those that may not be physically able. By doing so I feel that it would be more likely utilized. But then again, on the Willow and the Turtle Flambeau Flowages the water only access sites are filled regularly. There is definitely more than one way to look at the situation.

The Boy Scouts or some other service organization would be a great option for firewood sales. Many state parks that don't have woodsheds on site do private contract. If a using a service group didn't work out this would be an option. The problem with using a service would it be consistent for the campers. Campers use a fair amount of wood, there would need to be someone available daily and at the same time.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 9:19 am 
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Kerry,

A vendor or operator of the campground can be one in the same. These things are usually put out to bid creating opportunity for free enterprise to do its thing. Nine out of ten times it is a local businessman that gets the bid.

But I totally agree with you that not only city government should stay out of competing with local business but so should every other level of government. (Some one needs to tell Obama this). But there are certain services and functions that free enterprise can not and should not do on their own.

And also let us not forget that protectionism is not supporting free enterprise, it hampers it and stifles competition.

Tomahawk is a great and wonderful place to live, raise a family, vacation, but it is not now nor has it every been the hot bed of opportunity.

Government, when they have the resources and the where whit all to do it, should assist in creating those opportunities (jobs), but they should not fill them.


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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 12:07 am 
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The original suggestion of having a small convienence store was intended as looking at basic neccessities such as Ice for their coolers, grabbing a cold drink or a snack without having to pack up the car or camper and drive around town looking for a store. I don't think they would want to carry bait, groceries, and get a beer and liquor license. It wasn't meant for them to carry everything to stock the camper for the week. I can't remember ever staying in a camp ground that didn't have something on that order, including city or county owned campgrounds.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 1:01 am 
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If you don't have the desire to row or motor across to the island then I think you should be out of luck. There are perfectly good handicap accessible sites in sara park right now.
Getting a fifth wheeler to the island is easy, do it in the winter, or keep it on the main land. In the winter the city hauls rock with a dump truck from that landing across to bradly park.
Instead of a shop we could put up some of those handie dandie Tomahawk maps that have gas stations and bait shops on them. Why compete with current buisnesses on this.
For wood, if the boy scouts got a truck load of wood trucked in I think it would be really easy to recoup their costs at $3.00 a bundle. People have self serve stations all over the place for fire wood. Yes some people will cheat, but a lot of people won't.
Is anybody here going to the meeting. If nobody goes the city will never know our ideas. I would also like to see the idea brought up about camping on county lands. I know, not a city issue but maybe they could influence the county.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 1:14 am 
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I can just see someone firing up a 30 foot motor home to run to Charlie's for a bag of ice. There is competition and then there is taking care of your customers, which is what the campers would be. Not much different than a motel having an ice or soda machine. :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 1:23 am 
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It should really start out smaill. I mean, we need to have a trial period and evaluations. People might ruin the trees and the island may erode. People will be dumping their wastes on the road out of Sara park. What about all the trouble makers that this will attract?

This sound so familier, its, almost like I'v heard this before.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 1:29 am 
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Deb Richardson wrote:
Should the city of Tomahawk again consider camping at Bradley Park? In my opinion, NO, for the environmental impact. Today's campers, for the most part, aren't tents, small pop-ups, or small travel trailers. The big rigs cause damage to needed undergrowth, increase noise pollution, to name a few. Many campers feel that electricity is a necessity, would the city want to spend the money for that improvement, along with the improvements needed to once again make campsites at the park? Budgets are tight, would the revenue from camping meet the expenses, probably not. If the sites would be improved without electricity the campers coming in would bring generators, further causing harm to the delicate environment. There would need to be monitoring of the campsites to keep safe and friendly, another expense to the city most likely not recoverable.

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 Post subject: Re: Bradly park camping
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 6:26 am 
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Tie to Tomahawk: Called it home for many years.
I think a campstore is a thing of the past at most campgrounds. At least those that are not private. I've yet to see one at any of the state forest or park campgrouds. One at a county campground. People are willing to fire up those 30 foot motor homes to go for supplies. That is part of my beef with these types of units. Lots of noise and commotion for a bag of ice.

asterix, you mention county lands. I have posted just the same. Otter Lake is a beautiful site and could be a popular spot other than for those looking for a party, if managed properly. (A campground host that is on site all summer. The state and national camping hosts are volunteers, most county are paid.) I believe there are county lands on the north end of Somo Lake that could be developed for rustic sites. Rustic, meaning pit toilets, no electricity, sites big enough for a small travel trailer.

I think there are endless possibilities for more development for tourism in all of Lincoln county. All positive things that would not create a negative impact on the environment. Just enough to not become a Minocqua.

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