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Jewish group celebrates Hannukah with social outings, parade

Jewish group celebrates Hannukah with social outings, parade

The Young Jewish Professionals of Madison will host several Hanukkah events in early December including a social event for families, an evening of wine and art and a parade of Menorahs.

"[Hanukkah] is a holiday that enriches our lives with the light of tradition," Rabbi Yona Matusof, director of the Chabad House of Madison, said in a news release. 

On Sunday, families are invited to celebrate with YJP by participating in a hands-on olive press demonstration, crafts and a game show. There will also be a bounce house at the “Chanukah Wonderland” event, to be held from noon to 4 p.m. at 422 Commerce Dr. in Madison.

Attendance is $5 at the door.

Kids to ‘Shop with a Cop’ Sunday

Kids to ‘Shop with a Cop’ Sunday

About 79 kids will get to spend the day shopping, wrapping with officers

Area families who may not have the finances for Christmas gifts will get to share in the season through a program organized by area police officers.

Dane County area police departments will pair officers with kids for the annual “Shop with a Cop” program on Sunday.

Each year, children from families in need are chosen to participate in the event. Each child receives $150 -- collected through private and corporate donations -- to buy gifts for his or her family. The shopping spree will take place at the East Side Target, organizers said.

Detective Kathy Wessel with the Dane County Sheriff’s Office said about 79 kids are participating in the event Sunday. She said the little shoppers enjoy taking part in the giving season.

“They get a kick out of shopping for their families and picking out presents for brothers, sisters, mom and dad,” Wessel said.

Lincoln School, St. Mary's partner to provide 50 families with Thanksgiving meals

Lincoln School, St. Mary's partner to provide 50 families with Thanksgiving meals

St. Mary's staff members are giving back this Thanksgiving by donating baskets that will be distributed to Lincoln School families who may otherwise not be able to celebrate a traditional holiday.

A total of 50 baskets were assembled by departments across the hospital. St. Mary's staff members purchased items that combined into baskets to provide all of the fixings for a Thanksgiving dinner. In addition to the goods in the box, a gift card is included for recipients to purchase a fresh turkey.

Historic farm offers free Halloween fun

Historic farm offers free Halloween fun

A Waunakee conservancy will offer free admission to its annual Halloween-themed event Oct. 27 from 6-8:30 p.m.

Schumacher Farm Park’s “Halloween at the Farm” will feature old-fashioned games, face painting, live music and a bonfire. The farm said the event will go on as planned regardless of weather conditions and kids are encouraged to wear costumes.

In addition to the free festivities Schumacher’s will offer hayrides in its prairie and concessions for purchase.  Hayrides cost $3 (reduced fee for kids age 4-12 is $2; childen under 3 ride free). Popcorn, cider, s’mores and cookies will be sold.

The 40-acre farmstead, which is also a Dane County Park, functions as a living museum educating farm-goers on 1920s rural life in Wisconsin.

Schumacher Farm Park is located about 12 miles north of downtown Madison in Waunakee, Wis. Halloween at the Farm is one of several annual celebration events held at Schumacher’s.

Big Brothers Big Sisters Gala features Greg Jennings, Bret Bielema, Bo Ryan


The sixth annual Big Brothers Big Sisters Gala will take place Monday at the Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor’s Club.

Five hundred guests are expected to attend and raise more than $120,000 for impoverished children in Dane County.

This year, Bret Bielema and Bo Ryan will speak at the event.  Greg Jennings, wide receiver of the Green Bay Packers, will also speak at the Gala.

"I am very excited to come to Madison as the guest speaker at the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Dane County Annual Gala in their 46th year of mentoring. Supporting Big Brothers Big Sisters at their Gala on October 1st, 2012, is very important to me because I am very much committed to making sure children are empowered to achieve success in life. One-to-one mentoring is a powerful tool in ensuring that all children have the opportunity to reach their full potential,” said Greg Jennings.

Garden Days teach about community programs

Garden Days teach about community programs


The inaugural Community Action Coalition Garden Days have begun in Madison.

The event began Friday and will continue through Sunday.  Activities will include garden tours, live music, ask a master gardener, pumpkin carving, cooking demos and more, said a press release.

Multiple locations will host events throughout the CAC Garden Days weekend.  Those locations include Glendale Elementary School, Divine Savior Food Pantry, Blackhawk School, Fitchburg Fields Food Pantry, Traux Community Gardens, Troy Gardens, Marlborough Park and Blackhawk Church Food Pantry and the Madison Children’s Museum Rooftop.

For more information about the event, visit www.cacscw.org.

Search begins for Madison's top teacher

Search begins for Madison's top teacher

Nominations are being accepted for the top teacher or professor in Madison.

Panera Bread will accept nominations until Sunday for deserving educators ranging from preschool to graduate school.

Nominations can be sent to www.panerabread.com/topteacher.  The winner of the top teacher honor will receive breakfast for their classroom, a $200 Panera gift card and $100 in office supplies.

Panera will also donate $1 to the Kids Café Program at Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin for each nomination received, said a press release.

The top teacher will be announced on Oct. 5, World Teachers' Day.  Madison bakeries and cafes will also celebrate local teachers on Oct. 5 with a free coffee for teachers from open to 11 a.m.