September 2, 2021
Administration: We're A Bronze Member with WI Clean Cities!
Community Development: The Sun Prairie Downtown Business Improvement District (BID) is pleased to announce that the date of the fourth annual Downtown Fall Beer Taste - Downtown Sun Prairie’s Oktoberfest event, is set for Saturday September 18 from 1- 4 p.m.
Parks, Recreation and Forestry: Hurry and don't miss out! WPRA Discount Tickets are still on sale through Friday, September 3rd!
Public Safety: Welcome Harrison Buchholz as the Sun Prairie Police Department's newest dispatcher!
Public Works: The City will host an electronics collection event on September 11, 2021. Resource Solutions Corp. will be located in the parking lot at the Sun Prairie Family Aquatic Center, 920 Linnerud Drive, from 8:30AM until Noon to collect items.
Sun Prairie Media Center: The Sun Prairie Media Center is pleased to announce that virtually all programming seen on KSUN now features closed captions for the hearing impaired.
Sun Prairie Public Library: The library will be closed on Monday, September 6th for Labor Day. The drive-thru book drops will remain open.
We're A Bronze Member - WI Clean Cities!
City staff across departments have been discussing the value in conducting a fleet assessment, which would support in the identification and prioritization of reducing operational costs, emissions, and associated negative externalities of typical fleet activities, which are necessary for the provision of critical services to the community. Staff explored cost-effective options to better understand alternatives to internal combustion engine (ICE) powered vehicles. Technology advancements, fuel price volatility, and the introduction of a variety of alternative fuel vehicles (electric vehicle, plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, hybrid vehicle, bio diesel fuel blends, renewable diesel fuel blends, etc.), and prudent planning activities for fleet operations, maintenance, and turnover are key drivers for completing a fleet assessment. To that effect, based on internal conversations and recommendations or actions from peer cities/jurisdictions (City of Madison, City of Milwaukee, City of Racine, Ozaukee County), staff scheduled a meeting with WI Clean Cities to learn more about member services.
City staff met with the Director of WI Clean Cities to learn more about membership benefits, and the ability to conduct a fleet assessment should the city decide to become a bronze-level member (and we did!). Based on the information provided, and the ability for WI Clean Cities to conduct a fleet assessment on the city’s behalf, it was determined that membership would provide a great deal of strategic value for an annual membership cost. We're proud to be a Bronze Member of WI Clean Cities!
The fleet assessment would include reviewing fleet inventory data, vehicle-specific information, building infrastructure retrofit considerations including EV charging, identification of potential grants and cost-share partnerships, ability to utilize cost calculators for side-by-side comparison of different vehicle technologies and economics, and the provision of a written report that would present recommendations and calculations to city staff.
City staff will consider engagement with the soon to be formed Sustainability Committee for feedback and guidance, while considering what future planning activities would need to be completed to position the City's fleet to capitalize on new technologies while considering cost and emissions trade-offs. Due to the comprehensive nature of this planning, it is being considered to establish an alternative fuels infrastructure steering committee, as cross-functional (fleet, public works, municipal utility, staff and community education/training) collaboration will be required to transition to new fleet vehicles and associated fueling/maintenance/use.
We're Almost There!
We Want To Hear It!
The Sun Prairie Building Inspection Division has integrated a new online software called OpenGov Citizen Services. This software allows all permit and commercial plan review customers to apply for permits and commercial plan reviews, schedule inspections, receive real-time feedback on their applications, and track the status of their permit and inspection requests through a single online digital portal.
The service offers the capability for internal communication as well as customer communication within one system. Users will also have the ability to pay fees at any time using OpenGov’s secure payment site. This new system will be a time saver eliminating many extra-unneeded steps and processes. OpenGov has already proven its efficiency and effectiveness before its integration into Building Inspection functions. The City Clerk’s office has been using it for processing licenses for dogs, entertainment, alcohol, and more. In addition to the permit application process being changed, reporting a concern to the City has also been updated.
Residents needing to report a concern will now enter their submissions through the OpenGov portal. Concerns submitted will go directly to the necessary department instead of residents having to choose the department and then needing to fill out information for the specific department their reporting to. This was recognized as a barrier when submitting multiple concerns.
“The overall goal of integrating this software is to make the lives of residents and City staff easier,” said Brian Flannery, Building Inspection Division Director. “We are doing this by eliminating a significant amount of steps when applying for a permit and reporting issues.”
Services will be rolled out in a phased approach.
The first step, which was implemented on Monday, August 23, transitioned the current legacy software system. Since migration of the software has started, staff will continue the process of both creating new applications in the system as well as linking existing applications to applicants.
For more information and guidance on how to use OpenGov services, please visit https://cityofsunprairie.com/1445/OpenGov.
Sun Prairie BID Presents 4th annual Fall Beer Taste event – Downtown Sun Prairie’s Oktoberfest!
The Sun Prairie Downtown Business Improvement District (BID) is pleased to announce that the date of the fourth annual Downtown Fall Beer Taste - Downtown Sun Prairie’s Oktoberfest event, is set for Saturday September 18 from 1- 4 p.m.
The event includes 25 Downtown Sun Prairie businesses. Participating businesses will be pouring 3oz. samples of up to two flavors of a fall beer, ale, or cider, and are encouraged to provide light snacks to event attendees.
As event attendees travel from one participating business to another, Oktoberfest-style musical entertainment will also be throughout Downtown Sun Prairie. The musical entertainment line-up includes a variety of music from Ed Ford and the Steve Meisner Band.
Tickets for the event should be purchased online on Eventbrite at https://fallbeertaste2021.eventbrite.com. Standard event tickets are $30.00; designated driver tickets are available for $10.00. Designated drivers will receive appetizers and exclusive participant deals, but they will not be permitted to taste the beer served.
Event check-in is required, and will be at the Bank of Sun Prairie’s Downtown Sun Prairie location at 228 E. Main Street. Check-in timeframe is from 12:30-3:00 p.m. At check-in, event attendees will have their ID’s checked to ensure that they are 21 years of age or older, receive a 5oz. Fall Beer Taste sampling glass, an event wristband, and an event brochure. Designated drivers will receive a 16oz. Downtown Sun Prairie styrene cup.
General Beer Distributors is this year’s Fall Beer Taste distributor. General Beer Distributors has a wide variety of local beers from breweries including, but not limited to, Ale Asylum, Lakefront Brewery Inc., Capital Brewery, Karben4 Brewing, Revolution Brewing, and many more. Please visit https://www.genbev.com/beer/ for more information.
The Fall Beer Taste event is sponsored in part by the Bank of Sun Prairie and Eddie’s Alehouse & Eatery.
The intent of the Fall Beer Taste is to bring awareness to the variety of unique retail shops, specialty services businesses, and restaurants and bars that are located in Downtown Sun Prairie, and encourage event participants to visit Downtown Sun Prairie again soon.
Follow us on Facebook at Downtown Sun Prairie for information about events and updates! www.facebook.com/downtownsunprairie
Downtown Sun Prairie… we’re having fun down here!
Parks, Recreation and Forestry
SPPRF office is now open: Monday – Friday 8:00am-4:30pm and available by phone at (608) 837-3449 Monday-Friday 8:00am-4:30pm, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by appointment as needed.
In accordance with the Public Health Madison and Dane County (PHMDC) recent Face Covering Emergency Order, we will require everyone age 2 and older to wear a mask or face covering for all indoor programming and rentals, inside the Family Aquatic Center bathhouse, and when visiting the Parks, Recreation and Forestry office for in person services until the current order expires on September 16, 2021. For the most up to date Dane County COVID-19 information visit publichealthmdc.com and specific Parks, Recreation and Forestry mitigation plan visit rec.cityofsunprairie.com
Fall Fun Guide is now available! Register today for fall programs!
Register at rec.cityofsunprairie.com
Watch your child’s independence and confidence soar, as our Discover TOTS explore and discover the benefits of a more structured dance class. Following directions, waiting for our turn, and collectively problem solving will encourage emotional and social development. Live singing, musical play, and sensory props will have these little ones moving and grooving with their friends and eager to return to class each week! Parent/guardian must participate with child.
What is Pickleball? Pickleball is a low impact paddle sport played on a badminton-sized court with a slightly modified tennis net, a large ping pong like paddle and a plastic whiffle ball. Created for all ages and skill levels, the simple rules of the game make it easy for beginners to learn. But don't be fooled, it can develop into a quick fast-paced, competitive game for experienced players. These lessons are for players who are new to the game or who want to brush up on their skills.
Are you interested in running your first 5K? Join Jamie Adcock, Madison’s Running Diva Mom, for this 8 week program with 7 training sessions for a gentle introduction to running. Jamie’s program slowly and painlessly prepares your mind and body to run a 5K race in a supportive community environment. We’ll start off alternating between walking and running small distances, and slowly build up endurance over the course of eight weeks, so you’re ready to run 5 kilometers - or 30 minutes non-stop. This full training program also includes injury prevention and stretching tips. The group will run a celebratory 5K at the last class on November 3.
Thank Goodness It’s Thursday – TGIT afterschool early release program
Put on your lab coat and safety glasses because we are going to dive into the wonderful world of science! We will be mixing up some concoctions, discover chemical reactions and explore what science is all about!
This is a parent/child program.
**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
Coffee for Champions
Thank you to everyone who stopped by Coffee for Champions to support Special Olympics Wisconsin at Dunkin Donuts on the 20th!
Welcome Our New Dispatcher!
Harrison Buchholz is the Sun Prairie Police Department’s newest dispatcher. He is a graduate of UW-Madison with a B.S. in Social Welfare. He worked previously in the auto insurance industry as an injury adjuster and has been a certified caregiver for over 15 years. He has always sought to teach and help others in his career and is eager to serve the community in which he lives. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with friends and family, writing, reading, fussing over his two cats and looking for reasons not to mow the yard.
Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over
During the national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign, law enforcement agencies across Wisconsin will boost patrols to watch out for impaired drivers.
Alcohol contributes to more than a quarter of all Wisconsin traffic fatalities. The goal of the stepped-up law enforcement effort is not just to arrest impaired drivers. The mission is to enhance public safety and prevent needless tragedies by discouraging people from making the dangerous and irresponsible decision to get behind the wheel while intoxicated.
Electronic Recycling Event at Family Aquatic Center
The City will host an electronics collection event on September 11, 2021. Resource Solutions Corp. will be located in the parking lot at the Sun Prairie Family Aquatic Center, 920 Linnerud Drive, from 8:30AM until Noon to collect items.
There is a charge for collection of some items. Batteries must be removed prior to the recycling event.
Items accepted free for recycling:
CPU towers, laptops, telephones, cords/wire, projectors, audio equipment, record/tape/CD players, tablets, routers, chargers, cell phones, satellite boxes, gaming systems, Christmas lights & most small electronics.
Items with recycling fees:
Microwaves & Grills -- $15 each
Computer Monitors / 29" and Under TV's / Mini-Fridges / Small Window A/C Units / Dehumidifiers -- $20 each
Large Appliances / Exercise Equipment -- $25 each
Full Size Refrigerator & Freezers -- $35 each
30" to 49" TV's -- $40 each
50" + / Wood Console / Projection TV's -- $60 each
The following collection sites are also available:
Best Buy, Madison East (608-242-0701)
Goodwill, Sun Prairie (608-318-5560)
Resource Solutions (608-244-5451)
Dane County Clean Sweep (608-243-0368)
File 13 E-Waste Solutions (608-221-1313)
These companies may offer curbside pickups for additional fees.
- Greg Dustin, Public Works Supervisor, (608) 837-3050, email@example.com
- Ben John, Public Works Operations Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org
City-wide Brush Collection the Week of September 7th
The next City-wide brush collection will begin on Tuesday, September 7th. Residents must set brush curbside by 7 a.m. on the first day of the collection week. Further information on the brush collection can be found on the Public Works website.
Residents are reminded of the following important guidelines regarding brush pickup:
- Brush must be stacked neatly at the curb, piled no more than 4 feet high, with cut ends facing the curb.
- Leave branches in long segments, as long as 1 person can handle. Do not cut into small segments.
- Brush should not be piled in a manner that affects motorist visibility, and should also be kept away from trees, signs, parked cars, mailboxes, fire hydrants, and utility poles.
- Do not put brush in bags, boxes, or trash containers - staff will not pick it up. Keep brush in back of curb.
- Materials greater than 8 inches in diameter must be cut into manageable pieces, and kept separate from brush. Logs and branches 4 inches or more in diameter must be trimmed of all small branches. Materials less than 1 inch in diameter must be tied together in 4 foot bundles, not exceeding 50 pounds.
- Staff will not collect brush that is cut or trimmed by contractors. Contractors hired by property owners are responsible for removing the material. Collections are for brush and tree trimmings from a typical residential clean-up, not entire tree removals.
- Do not mix yard waste in with your brush pile, neither will be collected.
- Keep brush free of wire, tape, or inorganic materials. The use of string or twine is acceptable.
The City Recycle Center continues to be open:
Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:00am to 6:00pm.
Saturday from 8:30am to 4pm.
Please see the Recycle Center website for drop-off rules and procedures.
- The next curbside yard waste collection (leaves, grass, etc.) will be the week of November 8th.
All collection rules and guidelines remain in effect for curbside services. Check the City’s Refuse & Recycle page for program rules to be sure what you are setting to the curb is in compliance with the rules.
- Greg Dustin, Public Works Supervisor, (608) 837-3050, email@example.com
- Ben John, Public Works Operations Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org
Report Your Concern!
The Pedestrian Safety Task Force has been busy meeting and planning on how to improve pedestrian safety in the community and make it a #SafeSunPraire. It is important to find ways to inform the public and en gage them in the work being accomplished. Click the link in this post to be directed to the Pedestrian Safety Task Force Hub Site.
The Hub Site serves as an overview tool featuring information regarding the task force, Vision Zero, data, hazard reporting tools, and more.
Sun Prairie Media Center
KSUN PROGRAMMING NOW CLOSED-CAPTIONED
The Sun Prairie Media Center is pleased to announce that virtually all programming seen on KSUN now features closed captions for the hearing impaired. These closed captions can be activated by selecting “menu” and then “setup” on Charter Spectrum cable boxes or by selecting “menu” and then “settings” on TDS cable boxes. Captions for individual programs or live streams are easily activated by selecting the “CC” button while watching on sunprairiemediacenter.com. Users of Roku or Apple TV devices should follow their device’s instructions for activating closed captioning.
The introduction of closed captioning brings an end to the Media Center’s use of “open captioning,” which are subtitles that are always on the screen and can’t be turned on or off by the viewer. The Media Center has been using “open captioning” since early 2018.
“The implementation of closed captioning has been a long time coming,” said Sun Prairie Media Center Jeff Robbins. “While we could have implemented closed captioning sooner, it made financial and organizational sense to wait until our broadcast automaton partner TelVue came out with their captioning solution, which has been in development for several years.”
Open captioning was instituted on KSUN over three years ago in order to make programming more readily accessible to hearing-impaired residents. The practice also ensured that KSUN was compliant with ADA guidelines. “Although there seem to be many interpretations and opinions surrounding captioning requirements, particularly for non-profit stations like KSUN,” said Robbins, “we felt the best and most inclusive solution was to get captioning started any way we could.”
However, not everyone was a fan of the captions. “Some viewers and even some of our member producers did not care for the fact that the captions were always on the screen,” continued Robbins. “Those who didn’t need them felt they were intrusive, even though we felt they were relatively small on the screen.”
A realistic closed-caption solution presented itself this summer when TelVue announced their “Smart Caption” service. The service does not require additional staff, but uses speech-to-text Artificial Intelligence to generate captions. Live city meetings have live captions, while other programming is captioned following production with a click of a button, ensuring captions are generated before broadcast on KSUN or being made available to watch on demand at sunprairiemediacenter.com.
The only negative aspect of the captioning, perhaps not surprisingly, is the additional cost. “While we feel this closed caption system was worth the wait and is a necessary implementation, it is not cheap,” said Robbins. “We are paying to caption programs by the minute and given the hundreds of hours of city meetings and other programing we produce each year, the costs to the Media Center will be significant.”
To that end, Robbins said the Media Center was seeking business sponsors of its closed captioning. Sponsors would be recognized on-air during captioned programming – which now is basically all programming -- and via other marketing. Interested sponsors should call the Media Center at 608-837-4193 or e-mail director Jeff Robbins at email@example.com.
Robbins also is asking for viewer feedback on the captions: “We can add Sun Prairie-specific names and locations to the caption’s vocabulary, ensuring that ‘Linnerud’ for example, comes up as ‘Linnerud,’ and we’ve already added hundreds of items. But if someone notices something that isn’t generated accurately, please let us know! Of course we want the captions to be as accurate and as beneficial to the viewer as possible."
KIDS-4 Registration Open – Calling All Middle School Students!
KIDS-4, the one-of-a-kind media production/media literacy experience unique to Sun Prairie, is almost full for the 2021-2022 crew year. However, middle school students are needed for the program’s special “Thursday Night Live” sessions!
“Thursday Night Live” is unique, even within the already-special KIDS-4 program. During the weekly “TNL” sessions, students who are typically in 7th and 8th grade meet in the early evening to plan and prepare a program that airs LIVE on KIDS-4 Thursdays at 6:30 PM!
“’TNL’ is a long-standing tradition at KIDS-4,” said KIDS-4 Production Manager Rachel Packard. “Although our other KIDS-4 ‘crews’ are loads of fun for our students, there is something especially exciting about coming in and pulling together a live show from scratch. Plus, while other KIDS-4 projects tend to be worked on over a period of a few weeks, students who participate in ‘TNL’ get the satisfaction every week of completing a project!”
“’TNL’ consists of whatever the participants bring to it,” continued Packard. “There can be short comedy sketches, interviews, monologues, really anything the students want to do.”
As with all KIDS-4 crews, students should expect to be collaborate in all aspects of the weekly ‘TNL’ production, from sound, lighting, directing, cameras, in addition to bringing creative ideas and being on-camera.
Registration for KIDS-4 is open right now at kids4.tv and is expected to close on September 17.
-KIDS-4 Registration Information: https://www.kids4.tv/kids-4-signup-info/
-Contact Sun Prairie Media Center with questions at: 837-4193 or Rachel at firstname.lastname@example.org
-Program Fee = $125 for Members and $150 for Non-members. Price includes a t-shirt, crew poster and USB drive complete with child’s produced work. Scholarships available for those who qualify.
PLAY TRIVIA-PALOOZA OCTOBER 9 ON 103.5 FM THE SUN COMMUNITY RADIO
Think you know your stuff? Now’s the time to prove it.
To celebrate the sixth anniversary of 103.5 FM The Sun Community Radio, the Friends of the Sun Prairie Media Center are hosting the second annual Trivia-Palooza trivia contest!
What is Trivia-Palooza? It is a live, on-air, ten-hour trivia contest happening live on 103.5 FM The Sun Community Radio from 9 AM-7 PM on Saturday, October 9. Interested participants can also play along on the Media Center app, on tunein.com, or at sunprairiemediacenter.com.
Registration to play Trivia-Palooza is now open! You can sign up to play for free at sunprairiemediacenter.com/trivia. You must be registered to play and you must be 21 to register. But you will want to play.
Each hour of the contest will have a theme to its questions, a different special guest, and each hour will have special prizes awarded to the person who correctly answers the most questions.
Questions about the questions? E-mail the Friends of the Sun Prairie Media Center at email@example.com.
In addition, the Friends of the Sun Prairie Media Center are actively looking for new members to help with its mission of raising awareness and funds for the Media Center. The Friends of the Media Center are also still taking prize donations for Trivia-Palooza. All inquiries and offers should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Sun Prairie Public Library
The library will be closed on Monday, September 6th for Labor Day. The drive-thru book drops will remain open.
Children’s & Teen Services
Help us celebrate Library Card Sign-up Month by keeping your Library Champion sign displayed in your yard through the month of September. You never know where or when your librarian might stop by your sign!
Meanwhile in Youth Services:
We’re busy planning and preparing for a fall full of fun programs for you and your family. There will be Small Fry Storytime Online, Storytime Online, Pop-up Outdoor Family Storytimes, Family Adventure Days, Outdoor Family Fun, 3rd-5th Book Club and more! Click here for details. And don’t forget about our Teen programs! Teen Book Club, Tween Book Club, Teen Creativity Club, and Teen Gaming. Click here for details.
Thursday, September 9 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Please join us for a live virtual performance by celebrated singer, songwriter, and guitarist, Ricardo Parra! Ricardo's passion for music started with his mother (a singer and guitarist herself) who instilled in him a great love for the art form. Subsequently, this devotion has led him to perform throughout North and South America at numerous venues, including the National Institute of Fine Arts of Mexico, the Houston Museum of Fine Arts, as well as a multitude of libraries and universities. To view, watch on Facebook Live at 6:30pm. We will be able to leave the video up in our Facebook page after the event. This Live Concert Series event is generously funded by the Friends of Sun Prairie Public Library.
Tuesday, September 21 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Join us in welcoming Wisconsin author Vivian Probst! Come and virtually meet this award-winning author. Pay attention to the interior world of your dreams - it may change your life. Learn how Vivian Probst's dream journeys helped her solve problems and write a compelling five-book mystery series (The Woman Who Forgot Who She Was)! This program will be held via Zoom. Please register here, and Zoom information will be emailed to you.)
Wednesday, September 22 from 6:30-7:30pm
Say hello to fall and start thinking comfort foods - comfort foods with a twist that is! Join us for a virtual cooking demonstration with local chef, Huma Siddiqui. She'll be sharing her favorite Pakistani chicken pot pie recipe made with tasty ingredients, including carrots, celery, green peas, red peppers, jalapenos, and tandoori masala. All participants will be emailed a copy of the recipe prior to the program. This program will be held via Zoom. To receive the Zoom log in information, please register here.
Saturday, September 25 from 2-3pm
Are you a big coffee lover? Would you like to learn more about the history and chemistry of coffee, as well as where some of the best coffee in the world comes from? Then join us for a virtual live and interactive tour through a Costa Rican coffee plantation! Take a virtual walk around the farm with Alejandro Cano, a Certified Naturalist Tour Guide with 20+ years of experience and founder of Enjoy Virtual Tours Costa Rica. This program will be held via Zoom. To receive the Zoom log in information, please register here.