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Folks head to State St. for annual Maxwell Street Days

Folks head to State St. for annual Maxwell Street Days

An annual sidewalk sale in downtown Madison returned this week.

Maxwell Street Days on State Street in Madison opened Friday morning and will take place through Sunday. Multiple retailers on State Street bring goods to the street with tables, tents and racks ooffering deals. 

The Greater State Street Business Association and Madison's Central Business Improvement District said the Maxwell Street Days was brought to State Street in Madison in 1975, borrowing from the outdoor market idea on Maxwell Street in Chicago.

Event-goers can peruse a multitude of clothing, jewelry, gifts, artwork, sporting goods, books and more from retailers and food from eateries along the span of State Street. A list of participating shops is available through the Madison BID website at visitdowntownmadison.com.

Trash collection suspended Friday, returns Monday

Trash collection suspended Friday, returns Monday

There will be no refuse or recycling collection in the city of Madison on Friday due to the Independence Day holiday, officials said.

Residents who have their refuse and recycling collected on Fridays will have their material collected on Monday, according to a notice from the city Streets Division. Residents in Monday’s trash collection district will also have their material collected on the Monday.

Madison Recycling Coordinator George Dreckmann said that residents should have their material out for pickup by 7 a.m.

Dreckmann also said the holiday may cause large item service to run a day late next week.

Madison's yard waste drop off sites will also be closed on Friday. They will reopen Saturday and Sunday from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., officials said.

More information about waste services is available online at www.cityofmadison.com/streets or by phone at 246-4532 (east) or 266-4681 (west).

Motorcycle parade to cause brief traffic delays Saturday

Motorcycle parade to cause brief traffic delays Saturday

A motorcycle parade traveling more than seven miles Saturday will affect multiple Madison roadways, officials said. 

The Gold Wing Motorcycle Grand Parade will start at Warner Park and end at the Alliant Energy Center, the city of Madison said. The Gold Wing Road Riders Association is a social organization for owners and riders of Honda Gold Wing/Valkyrie motorcycles. The group is holding its 36th annual Wing Ding convention in Madison this week at the Alliant Energy Center. 

Madison police will close streets along the route from about 8:30 to 9 a.m. to accommodate the cyclists and cross-traffic will not be allowed, organizers said.

The scheduled motorcycle route will have bikers travel:

Madison Parks regional beaches open for Memorial Day weekend

Looking to do some swimming or hanging out on the beach this holiday weekend? Madison Park Regional beaches will be open for those looking to enjoy the lakes over Memorial weekend. Lifeguard services are scheduled for this weekend, but are subject to change due to cool or rainy weather.

Regional beaches open June 13:

Fire could close state office building 8 weeks or more

Fire could close state office building 8 weeks or more

The GEF-1 state office building will be closed for an extended period of time after a fire on the building?s fourth floor caused damage Friday morning, according to a Department of Administration release.

When crews responded to the GEF-1 building on East Washington Avenue around 2 a.m. Friday they found melted ceiling tiles and a small area of flames, officials said.

The building has been closed since the fire, but officials said it will continue to be closed for eight weeks or longer.

According to the release, crews continue to inspect the structural and mechanical systems and focus on clean-up and making any needed repairs.

Officials said they will have a better estimate of damages and the amount of time the building will be closed after engineers finalize their evaluations on the damage done to floors, ceilings and other structures and systems in the building.

City asks residents to help save the ash trees

City asks residents to help save the ash trees

At the end of March, the city's Parks Division launched an Adopt-A-Park-Tree Program intended to help save trees endangered by one of Madison's newest residents -- the emerald ash borer. The small, invasive green-colored beetles were first discovered in Madison last November. Originating from Asia, the insect's larvae feed on the inner bark of ash trees and have already killed millions of trees in other parts of Wisconsin and across the country.

"It is an invasive insect and 30 percent of the trees in our streetscape and the parks are ash," said Laura Whitmore, spokeswoman for the city of Madison Parks Division.

MWU: Madison's water meets, exceeds federal, state standards

MWU: Madison's water meets, exceeds federal, state standards

Madison Water Utility officials said water quality and safety tests performed in 2013 show that Madison's water met or exceeded federal and state standards.

MWU officials released their annual Water Quality Report Monday as part of Safe Drinking Water Week, a national effort to draw attention to people who ensure cities' water is safe to drink.

"This report provides an opportunity for our customers to learn more about the water they use every day," MWU water quality manager Joe Grande said in a release.

Grande said MWU crews go above and beyond federal and state requirements when it comes to testing.

"We're doing a lot of tests, not just to meet the regulations, but to better understand our water," he said. "We take water quality seriously. We're thinking about our customers when we are planning our testing programs, and we're trying to provide the highest quality water possible."