Monday, 15 December 2014 19:07

Family Deer Hunters Have a Season of Firsts

Looking back at the 2010 deer season, it was a season of firsts for one Kretz Lumber family. Beginning with a brother and sister team, Michael and Lindsay Koeppel had a season to remember. During the bow season Mike was taking advantage of parent-teacher conferences and was in his stand early in the morning with his grunt call, doe bleat and rattling antlers. Soon after daylight he started his rattling grunt sequence and had a fork buck checking things out. A little while later a 6-pointer came in but he was determined to hold out for a bigger buck. Some more grunting and rattling and an 8-pointer with attitude came in looking for a fight. Mike was surprised at how quickly and silently this deer showed up and he knew he had to take advantage of moving only when the buck looked away. Trying to calm his nerves he drew back and shot. It was a good shot and the buck made it about 40 yards. This was his first buck with a bow.

Monday, 15 December 2014 19:04

2014 Kretz Forestry Department Reflections

It’s the fall and as I sit in my deer stand I become a hunter/forester/philosopher. Reflecting on the past year we are once again fortunate. Did everything go as planned? Not anywhere close! If life was predictable it wouldn’t be anywhere near as exciting, and yes sometimes we don’t need that much excitement.

Monday, 06 October 2014 00:00

2014 Fall Forestry Festival Recap

On September 13, within the 29 acres of the Ray Kretz Industrial Forest located on the property of Kretz Lumber Company in Antigo, over 250 individuals came together to learn proper forest management techniques and celebrate the 13th Fall Forestry Festival. It’s all part of Kretz Lumber Company’s focus on teaching land owners correct forest care in order to strengthen forests and preserve the legacy of Wisconsin woodlands.

View pictures from the event here!

If you want to see Dave Marsceau, it is not very hard to find him. You see, Dave is retired and he loves spending time at his woodlot at the old home farmstead. To bump into Dave, all you have to do is get out to his property mid morning and you will find him in the woods cutting firewood, working on the sugar shack or the homestead.

Monday, 06 October 2014 00:00

I Like Big Trees Too, But ...

"One of my earliest memories is lying on my back on the ground looking up at the huge crown of an old bur oak."

The tree (Quercus macrocarpa) was growing in our back yard overlooking the Rock River in southern Wisconsin in what was the edge of the prairie. Being open grown it was not a tall tree but it had a large spreading crown made up of very stout limbs. There were two of these trees, one on either side of our yard and in the fall we would make great piles of leaves and have endless fun jumping in and rolling around in the huge piles. The trees still grow there and every time I pass by I take a look to assure myself that they are still standing there, like silent sentinels watching the river flow by.

Friday, 05 September 2014 19:00

Fall Forestry Festival - NEWS RELEASE

Contact: Troy Brown
Phone: (715) 623-5410
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Wisconsin Landowners to Converge for Fall Forestry Festival Program to educate landowners on woodlands management, celebrate good stewardship of Wisconsin lands. 

Antigo, Wis., Sept. 9, 2014 -- Hundreds of landowners will come together this Saturday in the Ray Kretz Industrial Forest, located on the property of Kretz Lumber Company in Antigo, to educate themselves on proper management of their woodlands and to celebrate good stewardship across Wisconsin and Michigan forests. It is all part of the 13th Landowner's Fall Forestry Festival hosted and sponsored by Kretz Lumber and co-sponsored by the Wisconsin Tree Farm Committee and EXPERA specialty solutions.

The festival provides community members and landowners from across the state anopportunity to unite, learn and share best practices for forest sustainability and conservancy. Festival organizers say sustainable forest management happens when educated landowners have the tools, resources and knowledge needed to effectively manage their land.

"With proper technique, planning, and dedication to forest health, we are able to educate and empower landowners on sustainable practices," stated Troy Brown, President of Kretz Lumber Company. "We believe in preserving a commitment to good stewardship of the land and proper forestry techniques. This festival is one of the tools we use to assist landowners in achieving their property goals while also educating attendees on woodlands management."

The Landowner's Fall Forestry Festival encompasses an entire day of hands-on forest activities, including exhibitions, learning stations, tours, discussions, trainings, guest speakers and a northwoods lunch. This year's legacy landowner recognitions include the Brandt and Shuman families, Palmquist's Farm, and the Peshtigo Preserve. Other highlights this year include keynote speaker Henry Schienebeck, Executive Director of the Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association, DNR stream shocking, chainsaw safety training, forest insect and disease discussions, and hayride tours of the Merry property. The festival begins at 10 a.m. and concludes at 2 p.m.

About Kretz Lumber: For over 80 years, Kretz Lumber has served as Wisconsin and Michigan's leader in professional forest consulting. Headquartered in Antigo, Wisc., the company manufacturers green and kiln dried northern hardwood lumber and veneer, and also manages privately owned timberland throughout the midwest. For more information, visit www.kretzlumber.com or call 715-623-5410.

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Tuesday, 26 August 2014 19:00

Fall Forestry Festival

Fall Forestry Festival

Forestry field day is less than three weeks away!!  The event this year is scheduled for September 13, 2014 and it is our favorite day of the year at Kretz Lumber Co., Inc.!!

On the brochure this year, you will notice that the name has changed to Fall Forestry Festival. In addition to the preparation for the seasonal change, FALL, has a new meaning to us; Forestry Assistance Landowner Legacy.

This year is exciting to put together as we have four legacy landowners that we have worked with through the years that have exciting stewardship stories to share. We thank the Brandt Family, Palmquist’s Farm, the Shuman Family, and Peshtigo Preserve for their willingness to share their experience with us.

One other slight change to note, for returning guests from other years, is that lunch will be served this year as opposed to a breakfast.

The Festival’s activities include the famous walking tour of the Ray Kretz Industrial Forest, the hayride tour of the Merry Property that is back by popular demand, a Dimension Plant tour that will consist of products produced by secondary manufacturer’s, a sawmill video tour, the popular DNR stream shocking, a forest insect and disease discussion, chainsaw safety training, and many tent displays with plenty of information.

Our schedule for the day is set. Registration is at 9AM with coffee, cookies made by local 4-H families and plenty of stories. We will kick-off the event at 10AM. Tours begin at 10:20AM as you will be able to pick any of the day’s events that are interesting to you. Lunch at your leisure is set for 11AM and concludes at 1PM. The entire event will conclude at 2PM.

Finally, I want to give a huge shout of thanks to this year’s co-sponsors, The Wisconsin Tree Farm Committee and EXPERA Specialty Solutions. Their commitment is above and beyond the call of duty. Thank you!!

We look forward to seeing everyone on this special day, rain or shine.

Tuesday, 04 February 2014 14:29

First Steps as a New Timberland Owner

When making an investment (which land is an investment) you should do your homework first. Sometimes land comes up for sale and you need to act quickly which doesn't allow that. In some cases people inherit land; what do I do with it?

Sit down with a pencil and paper and start jotting down what you know about the property and what you would like to use the property for. Things you may want to jot down, what do the property taxes cost per year and how will I pay for them? Besides hunting what do you want to use this property for; recreation, skiing, camping, relaxation etc.? What kind of trees do I have and what condition are they in? Is aesthetics important, wildlife management, timber management?

Once you have started this process the next step is to get some help, contact a forester and set up an appointment to walk the property. Bring your list of ideas and questions.

Once the forester has a good idea of your goals and the conditions of the trees they can start making recommendations. Think this conversation over and work with the foresters on developing the plan. The plan does not have to be elaborate but should cover short term and long term goals.

You should have a good idea of what the results of implementing the plan will be. Educating yourself is really the first step and getting professional help is a big part of that first step.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013 15:08

New Website Launch

Kretz Lumber is proud to announce the launch of our new website!

This past year we've been working hard behind the scenes to bring you the next iteration of the Kretz Lumber website. Here are few of the new sections and features you will find:

  • Modernized look & feel.
  • Responsive layout supporting any sized device/screen from phones to tablets to desktop computers.
  • Updated Millwork & Interior Trim Catalog. Browse all our profiles online or download as a convenient pdf.
  • New Blog section where we will be posting industry news, useful tips, announcements and more!
  • New Videos section! Tour our Sawmill, join us at trade shows and check out our tutorials! (more videos coming soon!)
  • Updated search algorithms to find what you are looking for faster!
  • New Custom Butcher Block ordering! Use our new cost calculator to order online and securely pay with your credit card via Paypal.
  • Streamlined contact options with topic specific forms on nearly every page.
  • Updated language options.

We trust you will enjoy the new and improved website. Please check back often. This is just the beginning!

We welcome your feedback! Please share your experience below.

Hard Maple has increased in popularity since the early 1990’s. What has made it a preferred choice of consumers and producer’s alike?

Prior to 1990, very few manufacturers could dry Hard Maple to the consistent white color that it is today. Dry kilns were often old and there was little if any detail paid to sticks that are used to place between lumber courses. But in the 1990’s, producers made adjustments to kilns, processes and stick design to produce a beautiful wood that was consistently white and free from drying blemishes.

At the same time European tastes in wood color was changing to lighter tones. This permeated to the United States where darker colored woods had been preferred for some time. Timing is everything and Hard Maple with the improved processes described above was primed for strong demand from changing consumer tastes.

Finally, the density and grain pattern of Hard Maple combines a fairly easy wood to machine with a grain pattern that offers variation, aesthetically. Making both suppliers and consumers pleased to manufacture products used with Hard Maple lumber and purchase those products that are beautiful in character.

So, the three reasons Hard Maple is a preferred white hardwood specie to everyone, alike, are:

  1. Consistent White Color
  2. Offers Alternative Color to Darker Hardwood Species
  3. Density and Grain Pattern are Fairly Easy to Machine and Offer Variation Aesthetically
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