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National Preparedness Month begins Sept. 1

National Preparedness Month begins Sept. 1

National Preparedness Month begins Saturday, the first day of September.

As Labor Day weekend brings the end of summer, ReadyWisconsin is urging Wisconsinites to discuss emergency preparation.

“Preparing for emergency events like tornadoes, flooding and winter storms requires individuals and families to be self-reliant and ready to face days without utilities such as electricity, water and phone service, access to local businesses such as gas stations and supermarkets, and other needed services,” said a Wisconsin Emergency Management press release.

People across the country are encouraged to prepare for emergencies by getting an emergency supply kit, making a plan for an emergency, and being informed about what types of emergencies could happen in your community.

School reveals student-awarded solar panels

 

Former eighth grade students from St. James School won the Lexus Eco Challenge – and new solar panels for their alma mater.  The freshly installed panels will be revealed Sunday.

The team, dubbed the ‘Ladies of Light,’ was given the challenge during their final year at St. James.  The students had to create an ecologically friendly action plan.  They chose to focus on solar panels.

The Ladies of Light researched their topic and interviewed representatives of Madison Gas & Electric, said a press release.

Solar panels cost $7,000, and the girls decided to raise the money with a letter-writing campaign and pledge cards for St. James families.  Thousands of dollars were donated, the press release said.

After winning the first half of the Lexus Eco competition in 2011, as well as the grant money involved, the team became one of 16 teams competing for the grand prize.

Backpacks and school supplies provided to Dane County children

Backpacks and school supplies provided to Dane County children

The first day of school will be a little brighter for some Madison families.

The annual Ready, Set, Go: Back to School event will take place on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event will be hosted by The Boys & Girls Club of Dane County, the Madison Metropolitan School District, Latino Chamber of Commerce, and the Latino Support Network.  It will take place at both Boys & Girls Club sites- Taft Street and the Allied Family Center, and Leopold Elementary School.

MMSD Superintendent Jane Belmore and Boys & Girls Club CEO, Michael Johnson will meet at the Allied Drive Boys & Girls Club to deliver backpacks to neighborhood families, said a press release.

“Thanks to Walgreens, Michaels, Shopko, Staples, the Fitchburg Police Department and many other community partners we are able to get our local kids off to school with a great start,” said Michael Johnson, CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Dane County.

Volunteers needed for American Red Cross remembrance event

Volunteers needed for American Red Cross remembrance event

The American Red Cross Western Chapter of Madison is calling for volunteers to help with its annual Day of Service Remembrance Event.

The event will take place on Sept. 9 from 12 to 4 p.m.  Volunteers should meet at the Badger Chapter headquarters at 4860 Sheboygan Ave.

Volunteers will help American Red Cross volunteers to canvass neighborhoods and inform residents about fire safety and precautions, said a press release.  A light lunch will be provided.

The American Red Cross is a charitable organization that provides support to victims of disasters, supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood, provides humanitarian aid, and more.

To volunteer for the Day of Service Remembrance Event, contact Rebekah Baum at (608) 232-5873.

For more information, visit www.redcross.org.

Madison Mini Marathon & 5K will cause street closures

 

The fourth annual Madison Mini Marathon & 5K presented by Meriter and Physicians Plus is set for Saturday, Aug. 18, and some roads will be closed for the event.

The half marathon and 5K start at 7 a.m. and the Kids' Run starts at approximately 10 a.m. at the University of Wisconsin Memorial Union at 800 Langdon St.

The scenic course includes all of Madison's Landmarks: Capitol Square, the Dane County Farmer's Market, State Street, Camp Randall Stadium, Kohl Center, the Arboretum, Picnic Point and the University of Wisconsin Campus.

Below is a detailed list of closures for Saturday, Aug. 18.

Summary of Closures:

Officials see increase in whooping cough cases

 

Whooping cough cases are increasing in Wisconsin, and health officials are urging people to make sure their vaccinations are up to date.

Since the start of the year, state health officials have investigated nearly 3,500 cases. That's about 11 cases for every 100,000 people.

People who don't have school-aged children may not be thinking about immunizations, but doctors said they should be.

"Everybody sees it as I saw it before I had it as an adult -- that it's a childhood disease and it doesn't happen to adults," said Maxine Dwyer, a nurse at St. Mary's Hospital in Madison, who has had two bouts with whooping cough. 

"This is the (cough) that sounds like it's coming from your toes. It's deep and it goes on and on and on to the point you feel like you may not be able to catch your next breath," Dwyer said.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, the highest instances are in Dane County.  

Enrollment days approach for 2012-13 school year

Enrollment days approach for 2012-13 school year

As the 2012-13 school year quickly approaches, it's almost time for enrollment in the Madison Metropolitan School District.

This year, families can save time at their school enrollment day by enrolling online ahead of time.

"We are excited to begin a new school year and advance learning for all of our students," Superintendent Jane Belmore said in a news release. "As the enrollment process begins, we encourage families to use our online system to save time on enrollment day."

All families must attend enrollment day at their child's school, but they can save time by first using the district's online enrollment system, available starting Monday, Aug. 6, at www.mmsd.org/enroll. The district is also offering online payment for the first time this year.