Newstastic Tuesdays: Nature

Hey there friends! Nice to see you again this lovely Tuesday, and thanks so much for stopping by!

I wanted to treat myself by taking a minute to blog about some news. I’m going hyper-local this week to the Door County/Green Bay area. If you have no interest in the following articles, read on, because I plan reflecting on, you guessed it, nature.

The News

+First, S/O to my reporter-gal Samantha Hernandez (follow her on Twitter @svhernandez) for her multiple months of work on a fascinating mystery focused on a missing person from 50+ years ago. Her investigative saga was made into two stories, both of which are being eaten up by the residents of Northern Door County. Read it. It’s awesome.

Part I: The mystery of John Kodanko

Part 2: The search for John Kodanko

+Second, here is my evaluation of how we millennials are fighting for the good jobs.

READ: Wisconsin faces bringing millennials into the workforce

+Third, we Wisconsinites can drink. Is this embarrassing or “part of the culture?” What do you think?

READ: Drunkest city in US? Wisconsin cities make up most of Top 20

Now, let’s talk about nature.

Yesterday, I had an awesome day at work. Right away in the morning, I jumped in the car and traveled nearly two hours from my home in Green Bay to conduct an interview in Sister Bay. The Door County Advocate’s resident photographer Tina Gohr and I finished our main task and then found ourselves “working” in a newly blooming cherry orchard in Fish Creek (that is pronounced Fish Crick for you non-locals).

Under the premise that we needed to get a shot of the trees to illustrate the beginning of blossom season (which is worth the trip to the peninsula for you tourists), we spent a good half hour walking through loveliness that is a cherry orchard in full bloom. We ended up finding an old tractor and antique truck, both of which were positioned in front of a big red barn.

It was quintessential Wisconsin. I was in an outdoor enthusiast’s heaven.

alyssa at lautenbach 1

Tina got a “glam” shot of me being awkward in a too-pretty location.

Walking through the trees, having a good time, seeking out bees to photograph and simultaneously avoiding and just enjoying the Earth was liberating after such a long winter.

Later in the afternoon, I tromped out into an alfalfa field near the lakeshore. Wearing my muck boots, in the company of other agricultural peoples, I felt a connection to home. For the rest of the day I thought of only my family and the farm. Wondering if Dad’s hay looked this good, if the corn is all planted, when can I go home and help him… I ended up sending him a text with a photo of the alfalfa in it.

Being outside on a sunny spring day reignited a dying coal of a love of the outdoors. I realized I need to be outside more, and you should too! I mean, it’s nice out! GO EXPLORE! I’m already planning a kayaking excursion, a primitive camping trip and new running routes to local parks.

What are your favorite things to do outside? I want to find new adventure-related hobbies! Help me out!

Cheers to Spring,

Alyssa B.

Blogging for SPJ


Twitter is turning 10!

Happy Wednesday!

A few weeks ago, members of the Society of Professional Journalists were offered the happy opportunity to blog about Twitter, as the social giant is almost 10 years old.

I pitched an idea and was invited to write a guest piece. (OMG! My first guest blog on a nationally recognized website!)

Through my work in Door County, I realized how important local journalists are to the community. We go to a lot of meetings, we make a lot of connections and we report hyper-local news. I found that Twitter has become one of my allies in informing, through the use of notifications. This is what I wrote about.

Please take a look at the blog post on SPJ’s ‘Net Worked’ here: 

Do me a favor and turn on notifications for my Twitter profile @alyssabloechl. I tweet about news and other interesting things.

-Alyssa B.

How People React to Sad News


The Door County Dive Team spent most of Friday March 11 pulling a car from the freezing waters of Northern Door County, WI. (Alyssa Bloechl photo)


I write the news for a living. A lot of that time is spent in long governmental meetings, reading through large documents and covering fundraisers. Sometimes, you have to cover something outside of the normal.

On Friday, I spent about six hours covering local authorities extracting a car from freezing cold water. We learned the car has been there, presumably, since mid-November 2015, and it took special circumstances for the vehicle to be noticed.

At the end of the day, as medical examiners arrived, about a dozen spectators and myself realized it was not an abandoned car pushed off the dock. We had expected the worst, but there had been a hope throughout the day that no one was in the car.

I met a number of local Door County residents who wanted to come and see what was going on. They filtered in and out during the day. Some were there before me, stayed through lunch and left shortly before authorities. I also met travelers and visitors who showed deep concern for the unfolding events.

Hearing the reason why emergency vehicles and law authorities were on the scene for over 24-hours brought individuals to automatically say, “I hope no one is in the car.”

What we knew from the pieces of information the Door County Sheriff’s Department told us during the day, people continued to comment they were hoping for the best outcome. It would not surprise me if a few of those people sent up a few silent prayers as the water trickled out of the car as it was pulled up from the depths.

I found that people who learn about tragic events in their backyards and neighborhoods care deeply for those involved. They openly wonder if the family of the hurt knows what is happening. They bring coffee for the hard working officers, emergency responders and divers. (This really did happen on Friday.) They do what little they can to help make this a better reality.

There is a sadness, anger or fear for the “bad” stuff we read in the news. There is also an innate goodness that comes out of people when they know of something terrible happening. We need to remember that.

My hope is that with the story I wrote on Friday and this blog post, we can reach more people to say a prayer, think a good thought or take a good action to ease the suffering of those who are directly affected by this and other sad news events.

To the family of Earnest H. Moore: I am so sorry for your loss. Please know that many in Door County have been thinking and praying for him, you and yours. God bless.

-Alyssa B.

To read my official coverage of this event, click here.

NewsTastic TuesDays: 3rd Edition



OK, tirade on flexing your muscles of a democratic society over.

Time for the news, of the interesting and engaging. Enjoy!


Instagram now allows you to seamlessly switch accounts. (Instagram)

Social: Instagram now lets you switch between multiple accounts Verge)

Praise the stars above, because Instagram just got better. I’ve been hoping they would add a “switch account” feature for like two years. I manage a few accounts, and logging out and logging back into a different one is a pain. Also, that logging out business would disconnect from sharing sites–UGH!

Now their switch feature is even more accessible than Twitter’s! Amazing what coding can do.

Journalism: Free Press photo helps define Flint tragedy for nation Free Press/USA TODAY NETWORK)

A photo journalist, Regina H. Boone, had one of her photos of a young child in Flint, Mich. suffering from the water tragedy featured on TIME Magazine.

I am so amazed at the work so many journalists do when tragedy strikes and news happens. Ms. Boone went above and beyond to get these photos, which truly illustrate a fate no one would want to see their families face.

Politics: Rising Stars: 18 members of America’s next political generation

I ran across this huge story of interviews with American high school students who are working hard to become politically active and to make change. It inspired me to think about what I’m an advocate for. Due to reading about how informed these kids are, I also signed up for a Politico newsletter to update me on the latest political news. Information is key!

Sports: NFL bans players with domestic violence convictions from scouting combine TODAY Sports)

This is probably for the best.

My work: No decision yet on Decoy’s future County Advocate/USA TODAY NETWORK)

This is a saga of a dog who was seized by Door County on the basis of mistreatment. The dog, Decoy, has been with the local Humane Society for over a month, and the issue has gone to court. It’s an interesting series of events, which has yet to come to a conclusion.


Thank you for checking out these links, I hope you were informed. What have you read this week?


NewsTastic TuesDays: 2nd Edition


Here is the second edition of NewsTastic Tuesday!

Loads of things have been happening in the world of news, and I think some of it would be of interest to you! A lot of these links are pretty hyper-local to Northeast Wisconsin, but they are all pretty neat reads even if you don’t grace this part of the U.S.

What interesting news pieces have you read this week? Share them please!

paczki day


Food: Pączki Day is great day to be Polish (Green Bay Press-Gazette/USA TODAY NETWORK)

I thought I’d start off with something sweet this week, and if you’re Polish or Catholic, this just might make your Fat Tuesday a little sweeter!

I’m getting my pączkis from one of the awesome bakeries in Green Bay, where will you get yours?

Sports: Packers fans featured in Super Bowl ad (Green Bay Press-Gazette/USA TODAY NETWORK)

Being that the Green and Gold were not featured in the big Super Bow 50, I did not watch much of the game. I did however see one of the NFL ads before the game, and it is my favorite thing this week. (Spoiler Alert: I really like Seal, so this was just the best.) You can read the article if you like, but I would rather have you watch the video it talks about!

Weird: Beezow Doo-doo Zopittybop-bop-bop arrested for biting police officer, throwing rocks at deputy (TMJ4-Milwaukee)

That guy with the crazy name was arrested again, and had once been arrested in Wisconsin. This was shared with me by another journalist, because ‘dat headline.

Written by me: Choices in Childbirth: Midwives (Door County Advocate/USA TODAY NETWORK)

I wrote a three part series about childbirth options in Door County, basically I wrote about doulas, the local hospital’s birthing center and finally midwives. I made videos, learned a lot and had a lot of fun. I wrote them a while ago, but I finally finished my midwife story with a video!

Journalism: Truth is, this wouldn’t ever happen to a male sportscaster. (via AJ+/UPWORTHY)

This female sports caster, Mel McLaughlin, kept her cool when a cricketer literally flirted with her on the air. The athlete’s behavior is unacceptable, and he was fined.