Astronauts have not walked on the moon since 1972, but there has been plenty of talk since then about going back. In 2004, President George W. Bush wanted to have astronauts return to the lunar surface by the year 2020. Then, in 2009, President Obama got a report from a panel of space experts about future moon missions. The panel’s conclusion: fuggedaboutit. Money was the biggest obstacle. The country was in a recession, and adding $3 billion a year to the NASA budget to finance moon flights was unrealistic. What the panel did suggest was trying to send men to other objects in space before going back to our own moon. Maybe to the moons of Mars, or an asteroid.
Bud Miyamoto stepped down as the director of Downtown Mainstreet, Incorporated in La Crosse, in the fall of 2009. Miyamoto had been head of the business development group for 17 years, and announced he was taking a different job. He would be succeeded at DMI by the director of the city planning department…future mayor Tim Kabat.
A dead cat with an arrow stuck in its body was found on North 20th Street by a man mowing his lawn. Another man in the neighborhood admitted to shooting the cat with a bow and arrow, because the animal had been lurking in his yard for more than a year and had knocked over garbage cans.
A wandering bear was shot and killed after climbing into a tree in Myrick Park in the summer of 2009. It happened the same week that singer Michael Jackson died. Both of those stories were combined into one sketch in the “Heart of La Crosse” comedy show at the Pump House that fall. The skit featured a musical memorial service for the bear in the park, resembling the real-life service for Jackson. The Heart show that September was called “Swine Flu Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, or It’s 9 p.m., Do You Know Where Your Mayor Is?” The title referred both to that year’s flu epidemic, and to La Crosse’s young new mayor, Matt Harter, in 2009, yesterday in La Crosse.