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Your first year of teaching is all about survival. If you make it through your first year; you can do anything. In this latest episode, I take a look back at some of the lessons I learned in my first year of teaching as well as share some quotes from my students. If you're a teacher listening to this, I hope you're able to connect with it. If you're not, I hope you gain some insight on what it is like to be an elementary school teacher. Enjoy!
A 2nd grade fraternity and sorority? Yeah, they exist in my classroom. They are a far cry from a college frat or sorority (thank the Lord for that) and they have been a great way to build community within my classroom. This is the story of how the Delta Pizza Monster Trucks and the Kappa Rainbow Unicorns came to be and how the power of Tik Tok changed my classroom this year. Enjoy!
Finding My Faith Again

Finding My Faith Again


I debated for a while on whether or not I would start talking more about faith on my podcast. While it's not something I've done a lot of on this platform, I feel as though it's time to dig a little deeper with it. I'm not here to preach a sermon or to tell you that you're going to hell if you don't get right with the Lord, but I want to offer you some advice on what to do with your faith. As men, we struggle to share our faith or to have connection with God. I hope that through this episode and future episodes to come, that I am able to provide you with different ways to improve your relationship with God and with others. Enjoy the latest episode!
In this week's episode, I discuss some of my favorite memories from baseball throughout my life and why most of them have take place off the field. I also wanted to bring to your attention a young man by the name of Ashton Strand. He's working with the Sawyer County Historical Society on a fundraising project to help save the museum (think "Back to the Future" with the "Save Our Clock Tower"). What he's doing is amazing and I hope you consider helping out. Enjoy the episode! SCHS GoFundMe:
Years ago, many families came together after the work day to share a meal together. This sit down meal provided a time where stories from the day were shared, updates on how the school day went (“We didn’t learn anything new, Mom.”), and other topics were thrown about the table while mashed potatoes were being passed. It was a time to truly get to know the people around you and your family members. Looking at current social trends, have we glossed over the fact that many people no longer sit down for meals together as a family?In this week's episode, we examine the "death of the dinner table" and what are some key elements to reviving it.
My friends, Beau and Bethany Petersen had me over at their Wisconsin Surf shop to enjoy a night of podcasting in their mobile sauna called Wisconsin Sauna. While we were slow cooking in the sauna, we discussed the Birkie, what the event means to us, and also gave you some Birkie tips! Enjoy!
There's nothing quite like Birkie Week in Hayward, WI. The town's population grows exponentially and there's a buzz that everyone can feel. It's the Super Bowl of the Northwoods. With the big week quickly approaching, I dipped back into my vault to talk about what the Birkie means to me. Enjoy!
The American Birkebeiner is less than a month away and I couldn't be more excited. The atmosphere in the northwoods area this time of year is something I wish I could bottle up and save for a rainy day. With that being said, this year will be a little bit different for me. I won't be just a spectator this year. I will be skiing in the Kortelopet ski race. Coming from a guy who didn't put on skis until this past year, I couldn't be more excited or nervous for my first event. Throughout this training process, I've learned a lot about myself and what I hope to instill into the lives of my second grade students. Enjoy the episode!
We kicked off 2022 by having our friend from the Whistle Punk, Josh Joiner, join the show. It was his first podcast and he rocked it. Josh recently moved to the area from Illinois and we wanted to hear what he loves about living in the northwoods. He also talked about his Chicago Bears, but we let it slide (just this once.) We also gave you some concerts to be on the look out for, some stand up comedy recommendations and a few tips on how to get through these long winters. Enjoy the show!
After almost three years since my solo trip out to California, this episode is dedicated to the solo traveler. Traveling with friends, family and your significant other is beautiful in its own right, but solo trips can be revolutionary as well. Here's a tale from the vault about my trip out to California and the things I learned about myself along the way. Enjoy!
Small town life isn't for everyone. The pace is often a little bit slower and the there's not much for night life besides tucking yourself into a corner booth at the local watering hole. But there's so much more to small town life than there appears. There's beauty in conversations while in line at the grocery store. There's a simplicity found in waving to your neighbors while on a walk down the street. Not every small town is Mayberry, but if one is willing to seek it out, they can find the peace they're searching for. Enjoy our latest episode.
We all had a favorite teacher growing up. For some of us, it probably doesn't take too long to recall. You remember something funny they did or the way they made you feel while you were in their classroom. We all had a teacher we didn't like as well, but let's not think of them right now. Teachers have an opportunity to make a profound impact on the lives of their students and that's just one of the reasons why I chose to go into the profession. It's a difficult position to be in, but very rewarding as well. Today's podcast is a reflection on my first year of teaching that I wrote halfway through my first year in 2019 along with some added notes now that I am in my third year of teaching. Enjoy!
Merry Malortmas! Let's preface this episode by saying that you're going to want to have a full glass before you start this one. We always enjoy getting together at the end of every year to rehash the events of the year. This year (much like last year) was a doozy and we probably had too much fun recording this one, but who cares? If you'd like to turn this episode into a drinking game, here are the rules:1.) Drink every time someone says "GOAT." 2.) Drink every time someone says "Malort." 3.) Drink every time someone mentions "guacamole beer." Best of luck and The Northern Nerd is not responsible for any injuries that may occur because of participation in this game.
Chris Wolf is one of the co-founders of the legendary Seeley Lumber Camp and is also one of my best friends. I have been meaning to sit down and record an episode with him for the longest time and the opportunity finally presented itself. Enjoy our in-depth dive into Seeley Lumber Camp and also some of our favorite (and not so favorite) Christmas traditions. If anyone wants to start the lights untangling store, we get like 3% of the cut... or something like that. Enjoy the show!
After Hours: Brovember

After Hours: Brovember


After a brief hiatus, the After Hours crew was able to sit down with a few cold beverages to discuss what we've been up to lately. A lot has happened since July when we last recorded an episode! We also discussed the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, gave out some great recommendations and gave you some not so legit promo codes to use. Also, if anyone is interested in sponsoring our backpacking trip through Europe, just hit up our AOL or MSN Messenger. Enjoy the show!
"The Show" was an iconic morning show on 92.3 WRLS in the northwoods of Wisconsin for over 20 years with my dad, Gary Hessel, and long time radio host, Dick Bender. While I was growing up, I got the wonderful opportunity to join them in the studio on multiple occasions to listen to them crack jokes while conducting "The Show." It has been a dream of mine to get these two back together for a "reunion show" and by golly, we finally made it happen.
Lucia Mauro is a Chicago filmmaker and cancer survivor and she is bringing her film "One Year Later" to the Park Center on Thursday, September 23rd. I had the pleasure of interviewing Lucia to talk about her film and other films she has made. We also discussed her travels and her favorite places to venture to in Italy! This will be her first time in the northwoods and we are so blessed to have her. Enjoy the show!
The Northwoods Humane Society is celebrating their 25th Anniversary with a 1k Dog Walk & Ice Cream Social on September 12th. I had Deanna (NHS) and Vallie from the Ovarian Cancer Symptom Awareness (OCSA) organization over at the house to talk about their wonderful organizations and how they are collaborating to put on this great event and other events in the northwoods. We had a fantastic time in the Northern Nerd studio (my kitchen) and shared many laughs along the way. Enjoy the show! For more information:https://www.northwoodshumanesociety.org
Bryce Gervais is a professional hockey player and an avid fan of the northwoods. He's played for the MSU Mankato Mavericks, Chicago Wolves (AHL), EHC Olten (SL), and most recently the Heilbronner Falken (DEL 2). In this episode, we talked about growing up in Canada, what it's like to be a professional athlete, life as a new dad, and the wonders of the northwoods. Enjoy our latest episode!
A rainy evening at fishing camp was just what we needed to get this episode recorded. I always wanted to sit down with my dad and brother to recount stories of hunting/fishing and many others throughout our time together. Enjoy our stories, endless movie quotes and laughing at our own jokes.
Comments (5)

Cassandra Anne

love the UWEC discussion- can totally relate whenever I go back to Water Street! 🤣😂

Nov 7th
Reply (1)

Riley Dougherty

love Pete!

May 7th

Dior Pulatov

What a great podcast! So true!

Apr 27th

Tyler Henke

great podcast by a great guy!

Apr 8th
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