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North La Crosse

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  • September 23, 2022 10:00 AM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    A New Vision for the Park

    There are several options for how Copeland Park could be used that came out of planning efforts that began by the City of La Crosse in March of 2022. ISG was challenged to repurpose the park, which was built in 1876 using designs from landscape architect John Nolen (of Madison fame). Over the 140+ years, the park has transitioned from its original large community lawn, extensive planting beds, and tennis courts.

    The park plan's new purpose: 

    • Set a vision to guide long-term development and improvements for the park.
    • Ensure the park's features and amenities reflect the needs and wants of the community.
    • Help ensure long-term financial and ecological sustainability of the park.

    On August 16 a review of the plan emerged.

    The prior public input process pinpointed its use as open space, recreational resource, a neighborhood park, and a destination. 

    Common Themes: 

    • The Park is an important community resource and gathering space that is in need of overall updates and enhancements. 
    • Logger Field is an unique amenity and regional destination. Any future plans should support its continued use.
    • Improve infrastructure and amenities to support large community/regional events in the Park. 
    • Create pedestrian and programmatic connections to the river front.
    • Diversify Park amenities to support all-age, all-ability, and all-season use.
    • Improve lighting, Park circulation, and other infrastructure to support user safety and deter unwanted behaviors such as vandalism, bathroom break-ins, and drug use.
    • Remove and replace highly used but out-of-date park amenities—including playground and restrooms—to meet current safety and sustainability standards. Remove picnic pavilion.
    • Improve trail and pedestrian connections and crossings. Particularly, address trail under Clinton Avenue overpass.
    • Remove or redesign parking and vehicle circulation along Copeland Park Drive.
    • Plan for ongoing and future flooding concerns along Copeland Park Drive. 

    Plan Recommendations

    To better support the diverse uses of the Park in coming years, primary improvements of the Master Plans should include:

    • Creating inviting and clear Park entrances and wayfinding
    • Improved site circulation and trail connections, including new sidewalks, connections between site amenities, regional trails, and ADA accessible routes 
    • A new restroom close to highly used amenities—splash pad and ball fields
    • Flexible open-space and gathering areas to support large and small-scale community events
    • Expanded play-area for all ages and abilities within the heart of the Park
    • Updated infrastructure (flexible seating, restrooms, utilities) to better support events and performances, as well as everyday use • Areas for passive recreation infrastructure (walking paths and benches) and views of nature within the Park
    • Removal of unused or out-of-date Park features
    • Expanded green-infrastructure and ecological features to support the health of the adjacent river

    Additionally, the Park’s unique features—such as the Logger’s Ball Park—are regional draws. The Park could be designed to support larger group gatherings or expansion of event activity.

    Various Use Proposals Presented

    Consultants, ISG, presented four alternatives. The options include layouts for a "light touch", River Walk, Riverside Pavilion, and Community Fair. There are plans for winter activities and flood mitigation.

    See the plan here >>

  • August 01, 2022 3:08 PM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    Photo Courtesy: UW-L

    We continue profiling the board members leading the North La Crosse Business Association.

    1) Who: Tami Plourde

    • Pearl Street Brewery - Sales/Marketing
    • On3 Print + Design - Owner
    • Sprout For Kids Foundation - President

    2)    Why do you love the Northside? What makes you Northside Proud?

    I love the people. Collectively, their love and passion for the Northside is contagious. I love the businesses. I feel like they are so roll-up-the-sleeves kinda folks. My kind of people. I feel like things are real up here.

    3) Why do you feel it’s important to be a part of the North La Crosse Business Association?

    I think peer support is paramount to a successful and thriving business community. We can’t be our own islands. And there is always great things to learn from each other. I also like the opportunity to works with our fellow businesses within the community. To give back. It always comes full circle for everyone.

    4)    Give a little detail on your background (college, high school, other fun facts)

    I graduated from UWL in 1998. I’m an English/Psychology major… which just means I’m good at talking for a living :) I’m originally from Lakeville MN but I’ve lived here longer than there. But still won’t give up my allegiance to the MN Vikings… Sorry not Sorry!

    I love this area. I live down on the river in a houseboat all year ‘round with  my partner, my kid, my dog and my cat. Doesn’t get more rustic than that!

    5)    Do you have a nickname? And if you do, how did you get it?

    I’ve always been called PLOURDE. Until I moved here. And still after 25 years… I sometimes forget to answer to Tami. Also, my internal office name is Queen of F*cking Everything… But this title doesn’t always fit on a business card ;) and how did I get it? #duh

    6) Favorite Food of All Time?

    Oh man… don’t ever ask me to try and whittle my list down to ONE! I WILL say this… LOCALLY made food is always my favorite. But I’m a foodie and will go to the ends of the earth to try something new. Ethnic Street Food is probably my biggest goal every time I travel.

    7) Do you have a useless talent we should know about?

    Theme parties… I throw them. I throw them a lot. And well what can I say… I’m starting to make a name for myself in that arena. Albeit… there aren’t that many names in that arena so…

    8)    What are your hopes for the north side?

    We face many challenges up here when it comes to floodplain, increasing crime and community need. My hope is that our community within a community never loses the mission to serve each other first, and that we will always come together with the common goal to make this area the best place for our kids, families, and businesses. #weare54603

    9) How can our NLBA members and community help make your goal for the Northside a reality?

    Join. Join. Join! We need more bodies. We need more energy. Never give up. Together… we can!

  • July 04, 2022 8:30 PM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    Get To Know Your Board Member

    Elaine Yager

    Broker/Commercial Property Manager

    Why do you love the Northside? What makes you Northside Proud?

     The people

    Why do you feel it’s important to be a part of the North La Crosse Business Association?

    I hope it encourages people to be the change they want to see, community involvement, giving back, it’s something we can all take pride in.

    Give a little detail on your background (college, high school, other fun facts)

    During Christmas, I put on my “Mrs. Claus” hat and Santa and I enjoy the season. You will find us at Rotary Lights every chance we get. Currently on the following committees/Groups:

    • City of La Crosse Planning Commission

    • City of La Crosse Community Development Committee

    • New Museum Task Force

    • Rotary East

    • (with NLBA) - HWY 53 Steering Committee.

    Do you have a nickname? And if you do, how did you get it?

    Lainey’, it was given to me by a dear friend many years ago.

    Favorite Food of All Time?

    Vanilla Ice Cream, the topping possibilities are endless.

    * Yes, ice-cream is a food

    Do you have a useless talent we should know about?

    I’m sure I have a few, none that are worthy of sharing.

  • April 06, 2022 11:36 AM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    He's the North La Crosse Business Association's (NLBA) second in command and always ready to help! P.S. he and his wife Ruth are smores MASTERS at our annual Lights Over North La Crosse (holiday lighting of Copeland Park).

    Meet Dan Kapanke, Vice President of the NLBA, chairman of our membership committee, and co-owner of the La Crosse Loggers baseball team with his wife.

    Q & A WITH Dan

    Why do you love the Northside?

    The people. Great businesses. 

    Why do you feel it's important to be a part of the North La Crosse Business Association?

    NLBA is made and missioned to make the Northside and beyond a better place to live, work and raise a family. 

    What's your background? 

    I went to grade school in a one-room, 1st-8th grade rural school. At 15 years old I began dating my future wife, Ruth. I am a graduate of UW-La Crosse.

    Any nicknames?

    No nicknames now, but as a child I was called Boone Boy after Daniel Boone.

    Favorite Food

    Angel Food Cake (with my wife's frosting)

    Do you have a useless talent we should know about?

    I love drumming up a conversation with strangers.

    What are your hopes for the Northside?

    Continued growth. More great businesses. Safer neighborhoods

    How can our NBLBA members and community help make your goal for the Northside a reality?

    Continue to carry out our mission with passion.

  • March 31, 2022 12:38 PM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    NLBA Board Recommends Security Camera Installation to Complete Uptowne Work

    A proposal to spend the remaining Uptowne money to purchasing security cameras covering most of the Caledonia Street is in the early stages of moving forward. 

    The NLBA is the fiscal agent of the funds raised for the Collective - a rebranding effort for Old Town North / Caledonia Street that slowed to a halt before the pandemic. As the fiscal agent for this group the NLBA Board has held the money awaiting a project to spend down the approximately $7800. 

    With concerning recent criminal activity on the North side, the NLBA is moving forward with purchasing cameras that tie into the police system via cellular and provide 360-degree coverage. The cameras are approximately $3000 each. 

    The Uptowne Funds will buy the first two. We are seeking members thoughts on purchasing additional cameras for the North side, starting with greater coverage near the Caledonia Street. We would expand coverage based on funds raised and police input on where coverage is needed most.

    Learn About Downtown La Crosse's 79 Cameras and How They Help

    HERE >>

  • February 04, 2022 8:11 AM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    Building off of the hard work of Nick Roush, who served as the NLBA president for six years, Kaley Jacobson took over as President at the 2022 annual meeting.

    Kaley is the General Manager of Events & Operations at Pogy's Catering and Pogreba's Restaurant.


    Where did you grow up?

    I was born in Brookfield Illinois and lived there until I was seven! We moved to Rockford Michigan for a short three years, and then ended up in Madison, Wisconsin until I went to college. 

    What path did you take to get to your current position?

    I went to school to be a doctor and ended up with a biology and communications major! I worked at Target in the pharmacy department for 16 years and decided I needed a change! Josh Pogreba, owner of Pogy's & Pogreba, was a friend and this opportunity just sort of fell into my lap! 

    What do you love about your job? 

    There are never two of the same days at my job! Each day presents itself with new challenges and opportunities! I get to work with amazing staff and clients on a daily basis! As a catering business, we have continued to grow our clientele base with continued regular clients and new clients each year and I am lucky enough to be able to develop and nurture those relationships. Pogreba Restaurant will be  celebrating our 11th year in business and that has been such a rewarding experience to be a part of that growth. Since covid we have seen a huge surge of new customers who have fallen in love with the restaurant on the north side and that has been extremely rewarding! 

    What do you look forward to with the North La Crosse Business Association?

    I have been a part of the NLBA for 7 years and every year I have seen new growth and excitement for us as an organization! I think we have done amazing things and am so excited for our new path forward! I am hopeful that we can continue to grow our member base and be able to implement our subcommittees to really help promote and support our fellow Northside businesses! 

    How can people help make that happen?

    Get involved!! That is the absolute best way to be a part of the NLBA's growth!! Join a committee, attend the meetings, and volunteer! Be an advocate for your fellow small business owner!! We always welcome new faces to the meetings and love to hear everyone's story and how we can help! 

  • February 04, 2022 8:06 AM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    The North La Crosse Business Association is seeking administrative support to help volunteers move our initiatives forward. This is a contract position, not an employee.

    Proposals are due February 14, 2022.


      We are a nonprofit, business organization that creates collaboration between business and community for the betterment of all. Our mission is carried out by our membership, community, volunteers, and by local government collaboration – making community events, future development, and our Northside businesses successful.


    • Working with volunteers and board of directors
    • Event planning
    • Marketing strategy creation & implementation (eNewsletter preparation, social media planning and creation)
    • Ability to strategize and implement a membership growth plan


    Board Agenda Preparation, Meeting Attendance & Minutes Taking

    3 hours/month

    Committee Work for three-one-hour meetings a month:
    Agenda Preparation, Meeting Attendance, Minutes taking and + post-event work (some committees do not meet every month)

    5 hours/month

    Monthly Membership Meeting (first Wednesday of the Month at 8:00 a.m. at the Black River Beach Community Center): Agenda Preparation, Attendance, and an estimated two hours post work including

    3 hours/month

    NLBA Marketing Creation & Posting on at least a weekly basis

    2 hours/month

    Accounting (Weekly Transactions)

    3 hours/month

    Membership Strategy Creation and Implementation resulting in growth of membership

    2 hours/month


    Please submit your proposal no later than February 14 to .

  • February 04, 2022 7:46 AM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    The North La Crosse Business Association held its 2022 annual meeting in which the following board members were elected:

    • Scott Neumeister (1st three-year term)
    • Elaine Yager (2nd three-year term)
    • Tami Plourde (2nd three-year term)

    They join the following board members:

    • Kaley Jacobson (elected President) - Read more about Kaley >>
    • Dan Kapanke (elected Vice-President)
    • Kevin Zagrodnick (re-elected Treasurer)
    • Derek Kubicek (re-elected Secretary)
    • Derek Mueller
    • Vicki Markussen

    With the changing of the membership dues in 2021, the NLBA has more money to put towards advancing its key programs:

    • Continuing and enhancing the Lights Over North La Crosse event that puts lights into Copeland Park
    • Implementing the Highway 53 corridor improvement pan
    • Promoting the North Side of La Crosse in social media

    To assist our hard-working volunteers, the NLBA voted to fund an administrative position with a Scope of work outlined here >.

    Membership Renewal Time

    The NLBA is currently in the renewal process for the 2022 dues. If you have not paid your membership dues, please go here > and sign in.

    REMEMBER: paying by check keeps hundreds more dollars going towards our mission versus.

  • October 26, 2021 3:37 AM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    How to Connect with Students

    URGENT: An opportunity now to talk about what you do

    The School District is seeking speakers for their virtual Academic Career Planning (ACP) on December 21. Most speakers currently are not local! They want people who are relatable - who have walked a different path to get to their successful career. Contact Britta below. 

    "We have a number of different ways that businesses or groups, whether it's local nonprofits, or military or others come in and access our kids."  -- Tony DePaolo, Logan High Associate Principal

    1. Set up a table during lunchtime on what you do
      kids can stop by and ask questions about what you do, get information, build connections, and you can get your contact information to them
    2. Connect with Matt Gordy (La Crosse Promise) whose goal is to connect students to careers. Examples he can help with:
      • Lunch & Learn to talk about your profession and business
      • Job shadows
    3. Create a Club. Ex. Rotary's Interact Club (service-focused) or the Educator's Rising Club (to promote pursuing teaching). The students have time on Wednesdays and Thursdays to meet with their club, at least monthly. Required: a staff advisor + outside co-partner
    4. Program Engagement. Work with the Archicitechture, Construction and Engineering (ACE) or Health Science Academy where students learn hands-on about a career.
    5. Summer Job Openings: Call their office. They will do what they can to get the jobs in front of students.
    6. TIP: Ask a teacher - particularly one who teaches close to what you do - to connect with students. Ex. Restaurants = Family & Consumer Education teacher
    7. Smaller time-commitments or donations: Be a guest speaker in a class, partner for an event they host, donate an item for their program that provides incentives for kids to learn,  or suggest working with students in some way. Ranger Renaissance recognizes academic achievement and had a sampling of different foods one year.

      Ex. Ruth Kapanke with the Loggers goes to Northwoods Elementary to help promote reading with “getting around the bases” with prizes at each base and tickets.

    with the School District:

    Anthony DePaolo
    Associate Principal
    Logan High School

    Britta Rotering
    Supervisor of Career & Technical Education, School District of La Crosse

    Another Contact

    Matt Gordy
    Futures Center
    Logan High School

    Matt assists students find a career and complete the steps to get there -- ex. applying for school, federal aid applications (FAFSA), organize tours, etc.

    Go Beyond Name Recognition,
    Build a Future Employee with On-the-Job Students

    "One of our goals is to bring more [career certificate trainings] to our high school programs ... so students are trained at a higher level or in a specific pathway if they choose at the time they graduate .... The other piece that we're missing is work-based learning." -- Britta Rotering

    Examples of certificates offered include AutoCAD, SafeServe (food), nursing assistant, EMT.

    Rotering is new to the district after building a growing apprenticeship program elsewhere. There are more than 65 opportunities for students to work in businesses during class time. Required: one person in the business to work with the student + one on-site visit by the school.

    They currently have 10 students waiting to work in businesses who can work portions of their school day.

    “This is an opportunity to grow your own," Rotering said. “Get a student who's interested in the pathway, who's taken our courses, who's looking for a next step."

    She said ideally, the student stays in their position in your company and advances within it.”

    Rotering points to Ashley Furniture's successful model last year with 13 apprenticeships in IT, finance, human resources, engineering, international business, and more.

  • September 09, 2021 7:34 AM | Vicki Markussen (Administrator)

    Development is moving forward on part of the ten-acre site just north-east of Menards in La Crosse -- a property known as being by the former La Crosse Rubber Mills and called “Former Trane Plant 6".

    La Crosse City Planning Director Andrea Trane reported the northern-most four acres will see 146 market-rate apartments and 14 owner-occupied condos. 

    The City created a TIF District [see explanation below] to help with developing the area. 

    “We hope to begin October 4,” said Paul Borsheim, with Borton Construction at the NLBA meeting. Borton Construction is a partner in the development.

    “This brings this land into play [vacated] since 2013 and gets much needed housing on the site,” said Trane.

    Borsheim said they are researching the viability of senior housing for the southern-most portion of the land, “So far, it's looking favorable. The Northside has 22% of the population and only 3% of senior living.  Many people want to remain here. It's likely going to be a combination of types of senior-care units. We continue to look for ideas and opportunities.”

    Borsheim explained that Hagar Street is getting extended to provide north and south access to the property. 

    When asked by Jerry Swim with the Lower Northside Depot Neighborhood group about how they will communicate the information to residents around the property, Borsheim said they will hold neighborhood meetings.



    A TIF is a tax-incremental-finance district. It is one of the City's few tools to encourage development of commercial properties within set areas.  As properties improve, their tax base increases. While the pre-improvement property taxes still go into the City's general fund, the community places increased revenue due to improvements into a segregated account for a period of time (ex. 20 years). The City uses these funds to pay back infrastructure improvements (roads, sewer, parks, etc.) or other improvements in the designated district.

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To create collaboration between business and community for the betterment of all.

PO Box 402, La Crosse, WI  54602-0402


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