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The latest business news in Northeastern Wisconsin
Northeastern Wisconsin

Northeastern Wisconsin

Serving Brown, Calumet, Door, Fond du Lac, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Marinette, Oconto,
Outagamie, Shawano, Sheboygan, and Winnebago counties.


Selected headlines — 9/14 edition of The Business News

Wedding dances delayed

Many event venues have taken a big hit because of virus

by Amanda Lauer

When Jim and Carrie Tryba hosted their first wedding at Simply Country Barn in Freedom on May 23, 2015, they never imagined what 2020 would look like for the wedding business. The couple has a background in the dairy industry. Jim milked cows for 52 years in Junction City before they decided to sell the cows and eventually the farm and move to Freedom, an area Jim had admired since he was young. Carrie had a floral and decorating company. When they toured the barn on the property at N3504 County Road E, they saw the potential of refurbishing the 100-plus-year-old structure into a space to host weddings. Wedding ceremonies can be performed both outside in the garden area or in the barn. The upper portion of the barn, where the majority of the events are held, houses a chapel on one end, a bar in the center space, and a large dining room on the other end. They have a preferred list of caterers, DJs and cake makers. Between those resources and Carrie’s talent with flowers, both silk and fresh, they consider themselves a one-stop shop for weddings. Read More

Cotter ‘thought about people first’

Funeral business that WWII veteran started still helping others today

by Nancy Barthel

“There’s very rarely a day that goes by that I don’t think about my dad,” said Mike Cotter, who along with his son Matt Cotter are owners of Cotter Funeral Home of De Pere, Denmark and Wrightstown. They are the second- and third-generation owners of the business established by World War II veteran James “Jim” Cotter in 1962. The business was a family affair from the beginning, when the Cotter kids would mow the lawn and cut the hedges, but Mike knows exactly why, as an adult, he decided to join his father in the business. “I remember a family, years ago, that they only had so much money, and the family was looking at a certain casket,” Mike said. His father told them, “ ‘The casket is only one piece of this puzzle.’ ” He recommended they not spend so much on the casket, but instead have a nice funeral luncheon because that’s when they would spend time with family and friends. Read More

People who make a difference

Kramer Rock’s been involved in some of area’s significant efforts

by Nancy Barthel

Kramer Rock has been a busy guy ever since signing the papers on Dec. 29, 2019, selling Temployment Inc., the business he founded in October 1984, to Staffworks Group, a regional staffing solutions firm based in Detroit that had eyed Green Bay as strategic to its growing operation. Now, he’s in the midst of selling the office building he built in 1987 at 336 S. Jefferson St. in downtown Green Bay and Rock finds himself sorting through file cabinets and cupboards, finding mementos and memorabilia that tell the story of a successful business, a lifetime of friendships and decades of volunteerism in the Green Bay community. “I’m such a packrat... As you can tell, I’m a softee,” Rock said. Read More

Growth strategies

Boats, Bistro help others enjoy the Fox

by Amanda Lauer

To say that Christine Williams, who co- owns Fox River Tours and River Tyme Bistro with Candice Mortara, is a fan of the Fox River may be an understatement. She’s dedi- cated her volunteer time and her career to promoting the river since she moved to the Fox Valley with her husband and children in 2003. “I was doing my masters at the University of Dayton.,” she said. “After my husband retired from the Air Force, we knew we were moving here. I had an infrastructure project to do, and I reached out to Friends of the Fox and the Fox River Navigational System Authority and hooked in with them before we moved.” “Friends of the Fox asked me to join the board. I was on the board and got acclimated to the river and all the river projects. Then, I started the Fox Wisconsin Heritage Parkway which was a spinoff nonprofit from The Friends of The Fox. I ran that for about 10 years.” Read More


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