The City of Rice Lake has grown from its logging roots to become a regional retail, service, and employment center, with excellent connections to US Highway 53, post-secondary institutions, and natural amenities. To continue to improve upon the attractiveness of the City for resident, visitors, and investors, City representatives requested the assistance of West Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (WCWRPC) to facilitate a community placemaking initiative.

This project was a true local partnership overseen by the Rice Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, with financial support from the City of Rice Lake, coordination support from the Barron County Economic Development Corporation (EDC), advertising assistance from the Chronotype, and the input of various additional local stakeholders.

July 14, 2014 the initial community meeting was held with 84 participants attending this 3.5 hour workshop facilitated by WCWRPC. They were instructed in placemaking techniques, followed by site visits, group brainstorming, and full group discussion.

September 16, 2014 WCWRPC presented the workshop results. At this meeting participants further prioritized and fine-tuned the recommendations, as well as discussed resource and next steps.

Nodes (areas) Identified are:
#1. Downtown Bridge & Chamber Area
#2. Main Street (south part of downtown)
#3. Main Street (north part of downtown)
#4 Veteran’s Memorial Park
#5 UW BC/WITC Campus Area
#6 Highways “SS” & “O” Intersection
#7. Moon Lake Park
#8. Entrance Signs

The Placemaking Steering Committee consists of someone who is leading each node. The committee is:
Node 1: Kathy Wellsandt, 715.234.5117
Node 2: Cory Schnacky,
Node 3: Cory Schnacky,
Node 4: Craig Antonson, 715.236.2418
Node 5: Heinz Eller,
Node 6: Dave Armstrong, 715.637.6871
Node 7: Ryan Urban, 715.234.2121
Node 8: Cory Schnacky,
Chairman: Karen Heram, Rice Lake Chamber of Commerce, 715.234.2126