Today's weather: 🥶 Cold. So cold. High: 21° Low: 3°
Good morning, Madison, and welcome to 2022!
Happy Monday, y'all. We've officially made it to the new year and I'm so excited to kick it off with all of you.
It's been nice to unplug and take a break from life's responsibilities if at least for a little while, but I can't lie and say I didn't miss this email just a little bit.
Let's dive into the news and see if I can remember how to write a newsletter.
🏫 Madison schools won't go back to in-person instruction until next week.
- Madison Metropolitan School District students are getting a couple of extra days to sleep in. MMSD officials announced they would extend the district's winter break through Jan. 5 (it was initially supposed to end today). Students will then have virtual class Thursday and Friday and in-person learning will resume Jan. 10.
- District Superintendent Carlton Jenkins cited rising COVID-19 case numbers, staffing shortages, and the timing of the holidays as reasons for the change in plans.
- The announcement of the change came after 5 p.m. on the eve of a holiday weekend, leading to the frustration of many parents.
"It has always been our preference to have students learning in-person, in the classroom. Our ultimate responsibility is to ensure our return to school buildings for in-person instruction after winter break will be done in a safe and sustainable manner." — Carlton Jenkins, Madison Metropolitan School District Superintendent
🧸 The Progress Center for Black Women is providing childcare and support for Madison families this week.
- With the sudden change to the Madison school district's schedule (see above), some families have found themselves scrambling to find childcare. Enter Sabrina Madison and the Progress Center for Black Women.
- Madison, the center's founder, is opening the space located at 30 West Mifflin Street to up to 30 children in need of space to learn and play during their extra — and unexpected — vacation days.
- If you're looking to take advantage of this opportunity, Madison365 reports the space will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and parents are asked to call ahead at 608-467-6744 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Additionally, the center is also looking for volunteers during this time, especially those with educational backgrounds.
🏈 The Wisconsin sports roundup you can use at the water cooler.
- The Badgers made their 20th consecutive bowl appearance Dec. 30 and managed a 20-13 victory over Arizona State in the Las Vegas Bowl. Running back Braelon Allen — who's just 17! — ran 159 yards and Wisconsin drained the final 9:57 off the clock with an 18-play drive.
- The Green Bay Packers clinched the No. 1 seed in the NFC for the playoffs after beating the Minnesota Vikings 37-10 Sunday.
- Giannis Antetokounmpo led the Milwaukee Bucks to a 136-113 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans Saturday night. Antetokounmpo had 35 points, 16 rebounds, and 10 assists adding another triple-double to his season and the Bucks their sixth straight win.
🗳️ Lena Taylor is out of the lieutenant governor's race and running for Milwaukee mayor.
- The state senator announced the suspension of her lieutenant governor campaign Dec. 23 and became the eighth candidate to join the race for Milwaukee mayor just a few days later.
🎄 Christmas tree collection begins today.
- The city's Streets Division will begin its first of two rounds of holiday tree recycling today. Each neighborhood will receive two collection opportunities but trees can also be dropped off at designated sites.
- According to the city, trees placed to the curb on or before Jan. 3, 2022 will likely be collected prior to Jan. 14, depending on weather conditions. Round two of pickup begins Jan. 18.
🛑 Don't go to Mickey's, they're closed for now.
- According to the bar's Instagram, two people on the Mickey's staff have tested positive for COVID-19. They hope to reopen Wednesday, Jan. 5.
📸 Feeling nostalgic? Take a look back at some of these bright moments from 2021.
- Cap Times visual journalist Ruthie Hauge put together a photo essay chronicling the highs and lows of an eventful year in Madison.
🦠 Covid-19 Resources
Wisconsin Vaccination Rate: 58.2%
Dane County Vaccination Rate: 76%
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.
📅 Events: Monday, Jan. 3
- Monona City Council Meeting. 7 p.m. Streaming option.
- Open Mic at Come Back In. Hosted by Andy Smith and Bill Roberts Combo. 8 p.m. Free.
Looking for more? Check out our weekly event roundup here.