April 15, 2021

Sun Prairie Clock Tower Express Logo

Department Updates

Administration: At the April 20 Common Council Meeting, Mayor Esser will be taking another step in honoring the City's commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion by presenting a proclamation proclaiming the month of April as Fair Housing Month.  

Engineering: You know what they say; April showers bring May flowers! While the start of spring and warmer days to come is certainly exciting, it’s important not to oversee what else comes with an increase in seasonal rain – stormwater pollution. There are 6 great ways to help prevent stormwater pollution this spring. 

Human Resources: The 2021 Virtual Career Fair offers interested applicants the opportunity to virtually connect with a recruiter from the comfort of their own home. 

Parks, Recreation and Forestry: Sun Prairie Parks, Recreation & Forestry, the Sun Prairie YMCA, and the Sun Prairie Parks Friends, Inc. are teaming up to celebrate Earth and Arbor Day on Saturday, April 24 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. 

Police Department: The Sun Prairie Police Department joins the law enforcement profession to celebrate the 2021 National Public Safety Telecommunications week from Sunday, April 11 to Saturday, April 17. 

Sun Prairie Media Center: There is an upcoming Town Hall on the topic of pedestrian safety and plans the City is forming to address this. Community voice is critical! The Town Hall will take place on Monday, April 19. It is not live but it will be recorded and then broadcasted on KSUN (Charter - channel 983 and TDS - channel 13 or 1013 for HD)  as well as shared online (KSUN.TV).

Sun Prairie Public Library: Join our Black Voices Book Club! This is a monthly book club devoted to creating meaningful conversations about race by exploring works of contemporary and historical African-American authors. Discussions are led by Sun Prairie residents, Donna Mackey and Marilyn Ruffin. 


Fair Housing Proclamation 

The month of April is nationally recognized as Fair Housing Month and a time to reflect and reaffirm the city’s commitment to fair housing and equal housing opportunities for all. 

The Fair Housing Act and fair housing laws prohibit discrimination based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, and familial status and encourages fair housing opportunities for all.

Chapter 9.20 of the city’s Code of Ordinances reaffirms our commitment to assure equal opportunity to all persons to live in decent housing facilities and to prohibit discrimination in housing by any persons:

It is declared to be the policy of the city to assure equal opportunity to all persons to live in decent housing facilities regardless of age, color, family status, gender identity and/or gender expression, marital status, national origin/ancestry, race, religion, persons with disability, sex, sexual orientation, source of lawful income or victims of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking and, to that end, to prohibit discrimination in housing by any persons. This policy does not preclude an owner from taking reasonable precautions and implementing sound business practice by screening tenants. This screening may include requiring credit histories and credit checks, requiring valid state or federal identification that provides sufficient identification of a person, or review of criminal background for reasonably related offenses. This chapter shall be deemed an exercise of the police powers of the city for the protection of the health and welfare of the people of this city and as fulfillment of the legislative directive of Section 66.1011, Wisconsin Statutes. Furthermore, the provisions of Wis. Stats. §106.50 are hereby adopted by reference. It shall be unlawful for any person to violate such section.

To learn more about Fair Housing, your rights, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, visit here.

Phased Reopening 

Effective Monday, April 12, City Hall and the Westside Community Service Building will begin a phased transition of welcoming back the community for some in-person services. The first-floor lobbies of both locations will be open to the public for regular business hours Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. All other departments and staff members will still be available by phone, virtual appointments or for in-person meetings when other options are not feasible.Screenshot (2)

Public Health Madison and Dane County issued Emergency Order #15 on April 2, stating that the county has achieved a continued decrease in cases and hospitalizations. The Order, which goes into effect Wednesday, April 7, reduces restrictions around outdoor gatherings but still has guidelines in place for indoor gatherings. Although local COVID-19 cases have decreased and vaccination rates increase, the City of Sun Prairie will continue to take a careful approach in its stages of reopening. The wearing of facemasks, physical distancing, and continued use of sanitation items such as hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes are highly encouraged.

For all updated department information regarding COVID-19 and to set up appointments, visit http://www.cityofsunprairie.com/StaySafeSP.

Aldermanic Districts Survey
Aldermanic District Survey is Live

Are four alderperson districts, two alderpersons per district, still the right structure for Sun Prairie’s City Council after the tremendous population growth Sun Prairie has experienced? The task force members ask you to complete the online survey to let them know what you think.

The task force must decide whether to recommend to keep the current structure of the City Council—eight alderpersons representing two districts, with two alderpersons per district—or to increase the number of districts to make each district smaller, with fewer residents and fewer households in each district. 

The City Council might follow the task force’s recommendation or it might not—the task force is purely advisory. Here is the link to the online survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3DXKGKJ


Stormwater Pollution Preventionpollution photo

Stormwater is water that comes from precipitation and snow/ice melt. The water either soaks into exposed soil or remains on top of impervious surfaces like pavement or rooftops. Most stormwater will eventually evaporate, but often times it will flow as runoff to another location. As the water runs it picks up pollutants along its path including debris, sediment, pesticides, fertilizers, pet waste and more. This polluted stormwater can cause soil erosion, stream impairment, flooding, fish and wildlife habitat loss, and reduced groundwater levels. Although stormwater pollution cannot be eliminated completely, you can do your part in preventing it. Check out these six ways to help prevent stormwater pollution this spring.

1. Only Rain Belongs in the Drain

As you start a spring cleanup in your yard, it’s important to remember that storm drains are not garbage disposals. Substances including leaves, yard waste, and other debris should be disposed of properly, and not released into neighborhood drains. Do your part to ensure that the only thing flowing into the storm drains are rain and snow/ice melt.

2. Use Lawn Chemicals Sparingly

With the arrival of warmer weather and outdoor summer fun on the horizon, now is the time when people start getting their lawns in tip-top shape. When it comes to fertilizer, remember that a little goes a long way. While a 20-pound bag of lawn fertilizer may seem small, do note that it will typically cover up to 4,000 square-feet of space (bigger than a tennis court). When spreading the fertilizer, use it sparingly to assure the excess does not overflow into runoff when rain comes. Choosing an organic fertilizer will also be less detrimental to the environment.

3. Avoid Over-Watering Your Lawn

While fresh, green grass is the end-goal for most yards come springtime, be sure not to over-water your lawn. In addition to the risk of fertilizer flowing over and out into the streets, it’s not good to have pools of water collecting in your grass. Avoid this by scheduling times each week to water your lawn, or by turning on sprinkler timers.

4. Wash Your Car Over Grass or Gravel

If you plan to wash your car at home, find an outdoor surface such as gravel, stone or grass to wash it on. Soapy water and grime will have an easier time neutralizing if it is filtered out before it reaches our streams and creeks. Try using a non-toxic or biodegradable soap as well to allow fewer chemicals to get into the water. An even safer alternative would be heading over to your local car wash where they will have a system in place for recycling or removing wastewater.

5. Pick Up Pet Waste

Although this sounds like a given, there are still many folks who do not pick up their pet’s waste. Pick up, bag, and dispose of pet waste properly to assure that unhealthy bacteria is not flowing into local waterways.

6. Plant Low-Maintenance Grasses and Plants

When it comes time to choose either grass seeds for your lawn or decorative plants, go with a low-maintenance, native (ones that occur naturally in a region in which they evolved) option. Because native plants adapt to local environmental conditions, they require far less water and are a lot better for the environment. 

Human Resources

2021 Virtual Career FairCapture

Applicants who are interested open positions now have the opportunity to connect virtually with their recruiter and all from
 the comfort of their own home!

They can register at this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwsce2tqzsuHdxjKZxU_Xr4T3bcgO8HB1-2?fbclid=IwAR3k_cSUKjuVSeLrWn5nPv9D5-8mFNZKpmQkmXLeje_mSc7fSdy-OfihBaw

Any inquiry can be sent to Dolgar Tsering at 608-825-1174 | dtsering@cityofsunprairie.com 

Parks, Recreation and Forestry

COVID-19 Update

SPPRF office staff is available by phone at (608) 837-3449 Monday-Friday 8:00am-4:30pm, by email at rec@cityofsunprairie.com, or by appointment as needed. Our office will re-open with limited hours for in-person services starting Tuesday, May 4. Our office will be open Tuesday-Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and by appointment as needed. 

Virtual Rec Guide Cover_ April  May Opens in new window

In-person programming will resume May 1. Virtual and at-home programming options will continue throughout the summer as an alternative option for those who wish not to participate in person.

Our Summer Fun Guide will be released on April 27 with a lineup of fun and engaging programming for all ages. The guide will remain in digital format and can be found online at rec.cityofsunprairie.com 

The Family Aquatic Center will open on June 19 until August 21 this summer. A full schedule will be available in the Summer Fun Guide. Season pass sales will begin in May. The Wetmore Park Splashpad is currently under construction with an anticipated opening of July 2 or sooner. 

Park facilities remain open, and shelter reservations are currently being accepted for reservation dates of May 8 – September 25, 2021.  Those reserving City park facilities will be required to follow all guidelines and executive orders put forth by Public Health Madison and Dane County.

A full COVID-19 mitigation plan has been developed and approved by the Parks, Recreation & Forestry Commission. A copy of the plan can be requested by e-mailing rec@cityofsunpraire.com

Further communication regarding programs, services and facilities will be available on our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/sunprairierec), our website (http://rec.cityofsunprairie.com) and will be communicated via e-mail through our RecPro registration system database.


We'd love to have you on our team this summer!  Positions available for ages 14 and up. To view current job openings and to apply visit: https://www.governmentjobs.com/careers/SunPrairieWI..

Rec Hiring Flyer

Facility Rentals 

Reserve your park facility for your private event today!   Reservations are available for shelters, gazebos athletic fields and courts and accepted up to one year in advance.  Green spaces are available to rent free of charge!  For a full list of available rentals and to submit a request online visit: Facility Rental Information - Sun Prairie Parks, Recreation & Forestry (cityofsunprairie.com)

Spring Rec Guide: 

Register today for May programs!
To view the full program guide or to register visit rec.cityofsunprairie.com

Save the date...
April 27 – Summer Rec Guide Release, including IN PERSON program offerings!
May 4 – Summer Registration Opens

Upcoming classes...register today! 

Rec on the Go
April, April Showers! – Basic Kit $7
April, April Showers!– Deluxe Kit $17
Subscribe to our Rec on the Go kits! April Showers...this month we will be all about rain and water. Each kit will include making a shaving cream cloud rain, grow an ice crystal and other fun activities.

Fitness, New Session Begins April 26! – In person and virtual offerings.  
Virtual P90X – Mondays, 4/26-5/17, 5:30-6:15 pm
In Person Zumba – Tuesdays, 5/4-5/25, 6:00-6:45 pm

In Person Yoga for Beginners – Tuesdays, 5/4-5/25, 7:00-7:45 pm
In Person Walk the Prairie – Wednesdays, 5/5-5/30, 9:00-9:50 am

Be a "Safe Kid", Ages 9-14
Saturday, 5/1
9:00-11:00 AM, Course #1253832.1
Fee: Resident $85 ,Non-Resident $105

This "Safe Kids 101" training provides kids, ages 9 - 14, skills for being home alone. Basic guidelines, first aid, fire safety, family emergency, internet safety and more will be covered in the 2-hour training. All sessions cover the same material. Please note: A parent is required to stay for the first 15 minutes of class.

American Red Cross Babysitter Training Course, Ages 11-15
Saturday, 5/8
9:00-4:00 PM, Course #1253366.1 (only 2 spots left)
Fee: Resident $85 ,Non-Resident $105

This training provides kids, ages 11-15, with the information and skills necessary to provide safe and responsible care in the absence of parents/guardians. This training will also help participants develop skills in leadership, professionalism, basic care, safety, safe play and first aid. All sessions cover the same material. Please bring a sack lunch.

Let's Celebrate Earth & Arbor Day!
Think Green Earth  Arbor Day

To celebrate Earth & Arbor Day, on Saturday, April 24 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. you can sign up to help with park clean up and plant a tree. Volunteers can sign up online at www.tinyurl.com/EarthArborDaySP2021 (please indicate which park you will be volunteering at).

Any questions? Feel free to reach out to Alley Ballmer at aballmer@ymcadane.org 

**For more information or to register for these and other Recreation programs please visit the Recreation Department page at rec.cityofsunprairie.com Registration closes online one week prior to the start of class, to register after this date call 608-837-3449

Police Department

Police Service Counters Open 

Police service counters at City Hall and the Westside Community Services Building opened Monday, April 12 to walk-in traffic during regular business hours of Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. We remain dedicated to continue to serve our residents in person and virtually. 

National Public Safety Telecommunications Week (April 11 - 17)

This time is designated to honor the men and women that have dedicated their lives to public safety communication and make daily personal sacrifices for this professional commitment.

Communication professionals are hidden behind the phones and radios that are used to coordinate our emergency responses on a daily basis. These people are key components in the successes of police, fire, and emergency medical service responses. Both the public and emergency responders rely heavily on the skills, abilities, and commitment level of these professionals in order to carry out the public safety mission.

Emergency call taking and dispatching is a unique skill set that is not easily mastered. It comes with a great deal of stress and requires unconditional dedication. Communication professionals must adapt quickly and wear many hats to be successful. They must accept the emotional roller coaster that will come with each day they arrive at work. Their ability to stand steady in the face of situations they cannot control is unparalleled.

The Sun Prairie Police Department is fortunate to have a communications staff that demonstrates all of these traits. Our staff is a truly dedicated group of people that are committed to our profession, department vision, mission, and core values. The current situation with COVID-19 highlights how proud we are of our communications staff. While most people are staying home and / or teleworking, our communicators are going to work, putting the community first!

Our communicators remain focused on providing high level service to our staff as partners in our problem solving efforts. A sincere thank you goes out to each of our team members. We move forward confidently with a strong team of communicators that represent the thin gold line that is crucial in our policing efforts.

The department would like to take this time to recognize and honor the outstanding group of professionals that make up our communication center. We are very fortunate to work with each one of them as police professionals and members of our department team.

“The thin gold line represents those who are rarely seen but mostly are heard. The calm voice in the dark night. The golden glue that hold it all together.”

Ashley Gullixson

Cassie Fleischman

Jared Bruttig

   Ashley Gullixson                 Cassie Fleischman                   Chris Dauck                       Jared Bruttig 

Jeff Aurit

Nieves Rios Sanchez

Tom Engen

Nick Hagen

         Jeff Aurit                      Nieves Rios Sanchez                 Tom Engen                            Nick Hagen 

Sun Prairie Media Center

Task Force Town Hall 

On March 2, Sun Prairie City Administrator Aaron Oppenheimer announced the formation of a pedestrian safety task force. LedPSTF Town Hall Survey by Adam Schleicher, the city’s Public Works Director/City Engineer, the task force began meeting almost immediately to produce recommendations to enhance pedestrian safety throughout our community.

The Pedestrian Task Force is now preparing a town hall that will be broadcast across several platforms at 7 PM on Monday, April 19. 

Topics covered will include the vision of the task force, the speed limit change on Main Street, the importance and benefits of speed reduction and eliminating distracted driving, and a discussion centering on crosswalks and right-of-way issues. 

The task force will also be answering questions and concerns from residents. That survey, located here, is currently open and will remain open until Friday, April 16 at noon for citizen input. 

The Pedestrian Task Force will air April 19 at 7 PM on KSUN, 103.5 FM The Sun Community Radio, as well as on the Facebook pages of the City of Sun Prairie, the Sun Prairie Police Department, and the Sun Prairie Media Center.

SPMC's 2021 Summer Workshops

Media Center Summer Workshop Pic 2Have no fear . . . The Sun Prairie Media Center’s much-loved, often-imitated-but-never-duplicated summer workshops are back!

If you know of someone aged 9-15 who loves to make videos, movies, or even podcasts and wants help taking their creativity to the next level, then you need to sign up for these workshops!

These week-long workshops are designed for budding journalists, filmmakers, actors, and social media influencers who want a fun and creative way to express themselves. Participants will be introduced to media production in a fun, hands-on learning environment that is conveniently located – the Media Center is in the same building as the public library! 

Media Center Summer Workshop Pic 1These courses will inspire kids in a creative atmosphere to learn communication skills they can use for a lifetime. Nothing is impossible when you have a camera, an idea and a group of friends!

Classes will include Adventures in Movie Making, Sports Production, Reporting, Podcasting and Vlogging, and more! More information is available at kids4.tv. 

Online registration will open on May 4 and will close on June 18. But hurry – due to limited class sizes, these workshops will fill up fast! 

All workshops will meet at the Sun Prairie Media Center. Discounted rates for SPMC members are available. More information on memberships is available at sunprairiemediacenter.com.

Questions? E-mail Mara at mtrusty@cityofsunprairie.com. 

See you at the Media Center this summer!

Multicultural Fair Radio Reboot

April Multicultural Fair Radio Reboot Features Centro Hispano’s Evelyn Cruz.Multicultural Fair Radio Reboot

Tune in for the latest edition of the Multicultural Fair Radio Reboot this Saturday, April 17, on 103.5 FM The Sun Community Radio. The episode, airing at 4 PM, will feature an interview Evelyn Cruz, a Sun Prairie resident who is the Director for Program Planning & Evaluation at Centro Hispano. 

The conversation includes loads of information on the services that Centro Hispano provides not only for Sun Prairie but throughout Dane County, as well as some of Ms. Cruz’s favorite music and spoken word content. 

The interview with Evelyn Cruz, conducted by Sara Milewski, will air for the next several weeks on Saturdays at 4 PM. 

Sun Prairie Public Library Logo

Sun Prairie Public Library

Children's & Teen Services 


Join us for Storytime! Small Fry Storytime on Mondays at 10:00 in the SPPL Storytime Facebook Group or on the SPPL YouTube Channel, Storytime on Tuesdays at 10:30 in the SPPL Storytime Facebook Group or on the SPPL YouTube Channel

Teen Jackbox with Melissa

Tuesday, April 27 4-5 p.m. 

You can play Jackbox games with Melissa on Zoom on the fourth Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. Registration required. Email Melissa to register: mcarollo@sunlib.org

Among Us with Melissa

Fridays from 3:30-4:30 p.m. 

Melissa wants to learn how to play Among Us. Teach her how. Game with Melissa on Fridays at 3:30 p.m. Registration required for each session and space is limited. Email Melissa at mcarollo@sunlib.org to register. All sessions will be held on Zoom.

Third to Fifth Grade Book Club, Program Kits, and More

The Youth Services Department offers a wide variety of programs, some are virtual and some to take home and create with hands-on.  Full descriptions and more information can be found under the Kids tab on our website.

Adult Services 

Urban SUN: Black Voices Book Club

Sunday, April 25 3-4 p.m.

A monthly book club devoted to creating meaningful conversations about race by exploring works of contemporary and historical African-American authors. Discussions are led by Sun Prairie residents, Donna Mackey and Marilyn Ruffin. In celebration of National Poetry Month, Urban SUN will be discussing Maya Angelou's 1978 book of poetry “And Still I Rise”, paired with the 2018 PBS documentary "Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise." Copies of the book, and limited copies of the DVD, will be available at the library for those who register for the discussion. Please call the Information Desk at 825-0702 to pick up copies. The Urban SUN book club will meet via Zoom until further notice. Please register to attend the discussion here and Zoom details will be emailed to you.

Virtual Beginner's Chinese Calligraphy

Sunday, May 2 2-3 p.m.

Join San Francisco-based Calligraphy artist, Jojo Liu for a live online session. Jojo will teach the art of traditional Chinese Calligraphy including; how to hold a brush, write basic strokes, and write standing. This workshop will be held via Zoom. To attend the event, please register here and call 825-0702 or email sunref@sunlib.org with questions. Funding for this program generously provided by an “East Asia in Wisconsin Library Program” grant from the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Center for East Asian Studies (CEAS).

Pakistani Cooking Demo: Mom's Favorite!

Tuesday, May 4 6:30-7:30pm

A fun program just in time for Mother's Day! We're excited to welcome local chef Huma Siddiqui back for another delicious Pakistani cooking demonstration! She'll be preparing a few of her mom's favorite dishes: cholay, raita, and pasties.  This meal is comprised of garbanzo beans cooked with spices, whole cumin, tomatoes, jalapenos, onions, a yogurt side sauce, and puff pastry. The recipes will be shared with registrants prior to the program, so that participants may gather the ingredients and follow along live or prepare it at home after the event! This program will be held online via Zoom. Please register here.

Beginner's Tai Chi

Wednesday, May 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th 11-11:30 a.m.

Tai Chi is slow, mindful exercise and attention to the breath proven to be helpful for strength, alignment, flexibility, stress management, cognitive fitness, and balance of body, mind and spirit. It's practical, relaxing, and can be modified for a wide range of special needs. Take a break and learn the basics with certified master instructor, Jody Curley, M.A.  This is a four part weekly series, but you do not need to register for all four to attend. You are welcome to attend those that fit your schedule, but please note, you must register for each session individually. These sessions will be held via Zoom. To receive the Zoom log in information, please register here.

Dream Bus Bookmobile

The Dream Bus is a library on wheels! Sign-up for a library card, return materials, and get free books, movies, wi-fi and more! Visit the table outside the Dream Bus, for touch-less browsing. On-board service will not be offered. Staff will be observing social distancing and wearing masks.

Mondays, 4-6 p.m. C.H. Bird Elementary School