Good morning, Madison!
And just like that, February is basically gone. Oh how time flies when you're writing an email newsletter.
Have a good week,
🏠 Oh great, the rent’s going up again!
- Average rents in the Madison area increased nearly 8% over the last two years, the Cap Times reports.
- To make you feel (slightly) better, it’s way worse in other cities. Miami during that same period? Up more than 30%.
- Of course, these increases are the cause of a lot of stress for many Madison renters.
🪧 UW Health nurses are still pushing for union recognition.
- Hundreds of nurses and supporters showed up for a rally on the west side last week, the Wisconsin Examiner reports.
- The leadership of the health system maintains that the Act 10 legislation passed during the governorship of Scott Walker forbids them from recognizing a nurses union. The union seeking to represent the nurses — and a lawyer at the nonpartisan Legislative Council — say that’s not the case.
- Related: Act 10 at 10: Four takeaways from the Scott Walker legislation that shook Wisconsin (Journal Sentinel)
🥙 A local chef is a semifinalist for a James Beard Award.
- Daniel Bonanno, executive chef and co-owner of A Pig in a Fur Coat, was named a semifinalist for the 2022 James Beard Award category of Best Chef: Midwest last week.
- The Willy Street restaurant serves “Mediterranean comfort food in a casual fine dining atmosphere.”
- “It’s not a goal that I put on myself or my team. I just try to be me. These last couple years definitely have been hard on everybody. So, my biggest accomplishment was just reopening the restaurant this year, and trying to get back to what we used to do,” Bonanno said.
🥩 Coming soon-ish: a Texas Roadhouse on the west side.
- The new location could open “as early as next fall,” the State Journal reports. It will be near the Walmart on Watts Road.
- There’s already a Texas Roadhouse location on the east side, near East Towne Mall.
🥩 Gone but not forgotten: Smoky’s Club.
- The campus-area restaurant's last day was Saturday.
- Founded in 1953, Smoky's was a gameday favorite for many UW football fans.
🐻❄️ This local polar bear loves his pickle toy.
- From Henry Vilas Zoo, in honor of International Polar Bear Day:
🦠 Covid-19 Update
Wisconsin Vaccination Rate: 60.3%
Dane County Vaccination Rate: 78.1%
- Here's where to find a COVID-19 vaccine near you.
- Need a COVID-19 test? PHMDC has you covered.
- Do you still need your flu shot? Start here.
- Request an at-home testing kit from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.
- Where to pick up free masks from the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program
- Where to Buy N95s, KN95s, and Surgical-Style Masks in 2022 (Wirecutter)
- What to Do if You are Sick or Possibly Exposed (PHMDC)
📅 Events: Monday, Feb. 28
- Women Dancing Screening & Talk Balk at Arts + Literature Lab. Li Chiao-Ping discusses her Women Dancing project, in which she commissioned 7 esteemed choreographers to make unique solos for her. 7 p.m. Free.
- CNL Sings Sad Songs to Celebrate Sobriety from Communication. 7 p.m. Virtual. Free.
- UW Afro-Cuban Jazz Ensemble at Hamel Music Center. 7:30 p.m. Virtual option. Free.
- Cocktails with the Author: “The United States of Cocktails” at Leopold's Books Bar Caffè. Q&A with Brian Bartels, an author, bartender, and co-owner of Settle Down Tavern & Oz by Oz. 7 p.m. Free.
- Briston Maroney with Genevieve Stokes at the Majestic. Music at 8 p.m. $20 advance, $25 at door.