Wisconsin Life #512: “Engines of Change”

January 5, 2018


Wisconsin Life host Angela Fitzgerald gets an up-close and personal look at the Milwaukee Fire Historical Society’s Fire Museum. Fitzgerald explores the artifacts found within the museum including a 1927 firetruck and a Cadillac ambulance. She talks with Milwaukee Fire Historical Society President Warren Skonieczny about the museum that once functioned as an active firehouse.

Fitzgerald also introduces us to a new set of stories including a Milwaukee high school basketball player named Marcell Dinsmore. Dinsmore was born with a birth defect that stunted the development of his hands. Despite some early struggles with his basketball career, Dinsmore went on to become a major impact player on his high school basketball team.

Then it’s off to the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest where we meet Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Biologist Laine Stowell. Stowell’s mission of restoring the elk population to the Wisconsin wilderness has become a labor of love. Through radio telemetry, Stowell tracks the different herds of elk and monitors their progress. Thanks to Stowell’s efforts, Wisconsin’s elk population has experienced substantial growth in the past 20 years.

Next, we head to Madison to visit textile designer Marianne Fairbanks and chemist Trisha Andrew. The UW-Madison pair created a method to weave fabric into solar cells to harness the sun’s energy. The pair’s inventive approach using textiles to solving the increased demand for energy could lead to exciting new technologies for harnessing energy.

Finally, we share a story of a music group helping kids from all over Madison find their own rhythm and beat using drums. Black Star Drumline was founded by local musician Joey B. Banks. He passes along the knowledge he learned performing in a drumline to local kids. The organization has performed all over the state and is the official drumline of the Milwaukee Bucks.


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