Good morning, Madison!

Happy Wednesday. I hope everyone got a chance to enjoy the taste of spring weather we got yesterday because the rest of the week is about to get real cold, real quick.

On this fine Wednesday, I have a favor to ask.

We've been sending out the Madison Minutes free morning newsletter since April 2021 and we're incredibly proud of all we have accomplished in this short time. If you like us (we hope you do!) consider nominating Madison Minutes for Madison Magazine's Best of Madison awards.

I know we are an email but we think we'd fit best in the "Local News Website" category.

Round one nominations are open through the end of the month and you can vote once per day in each category per valid email address. There are tons of categories, so while you're casting your votes for Madison Minutes (heheh) don't be afraid to show some love to all of your other favorite local people, places, and things!

— Hayley


🦠 Your options for free Covid-19 tests.

⚖️ Wisconsin's top senate Democrat won't seek re-election.

"After four years in the Assembly and almost eight years in the Senate, it is time for me to make way for a new generation of progressive and pragmatic leaders from a part of the state that has produced so many." — Senate Minority Leader Janet Bewley, D-Delta

🐰 Happy Take Me Home Wednesday!

  • I made a mistake and accidentally left out our featured adoptable animal for Take Me Home Tuesday yesterday. So without further ado, meet Alabaster! This adult rabbit is a bit shy at first, but once he warms up to you, he’ll be your best friend. He is a playful rabbit. Alabaster also enjoys munching on veggies and blueberries. He’s looking for a new home where he can hop about and release his zoomies. Learn more about Alabaster here.

☎️ A 3-digit national suicide hotline will go into effect in July, thanks in part to Tammy Baldwin.

  • Early in the pandemic, Wisconsin Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin  introduced the bipartisan National Suicide Hotline Designation Act which was signed by former President Donald Trump in October 2020.
  • The legislation converts the 10-digit suicide hotline to simply 988, in hopes of making it easier for Americans to get the help they need when in crisis. The change will go into effect July 16, WPR reports.

📚 2021 was the year of the library card.

  • Madisonians took full advantage of the public library system's offerings in 2021. Throughout the year, the system issued 10,898 library cards, a 34% increase from 2020.

💉 You'll have to be vaccinated if you want to go to Liquid.

  • The campus-area bar and music venue announced last week that they would eliminate negative Covid-19 tests as a means of entry and instead, all patrons must be fully vaccinated. Boosters are encouraged, but not required.

✨ Looking for ways to celebrate the Lunar New Year?

🎸 Your lunchtime read: At home at the former Smart Studios.

  • From Tone Madison: "A new owner plans to live at the former Madison studio's East Wash building and keep its 'funky angles' intact. ... Neka Allen, a native of Kenosha, bought the two-story brick building in September and has been gradually turning it into her private residence. And since November, she's documented the ongoing renovations on Instagram."

🦠 Covid-19 Update

Source: Public Health Madison & Dane County

Wisconsin Vaccination Rate: 59.4%

Dane County Vaccination Rate: 77.2%

Resources

Here's where to find a COVID-19 vaccine near you.


📅 Events: Wednesday, Feb. 2