Gooooood morning, Madison!
Welcome to Wednesday.
Here's some news you can use to get your day started: American households can order more free at-home Covid-19 tests.
Every household is eligible for a total of eight tests, so if you ordered four in January, you can still get for four more. Just like the last time, tests will be delivered by the US Postal Service and can be ordered online or by phone.
Stay healthy, friends.
🧪 The state of Covid-19 testing in MMSD schools.
- Covid-19 testing at Madison schools abruptly ended in late February when a contract expired with COVID Clinic, a third-party vendor used for on-site testing.
- As the State Journal reports, the Department of Health Services and the Madison School District can't (or won't?) say which entity was responsible for the dissolution of the contract. MMSD maintains DHS was "solely" responsible for the decision to switch testing vendors but both DHS and COVID Clinic say the district ended the testing services.
- For now, the district is pausing on-site Covid-19 testing. It's unclear when school-based testing will resume.
🏈 What's up in Wisconsin sports.
- Rodgers is sticking around, for now. Packers quarterback and MVP Aaron Rodgers confirmed Tuesday he will return to Green Bay next season. Though the QB disputed some reports of a new contract, NFL Network reports the Packers and Rodgers agreed to a four-year, $200 million agreement.
- UW men's basketball has some bright stars. Sophomore Johnny Davis was named the Big Ten player of the year. Davis wasn't the only one getting top honors, though. Head coach Greg Gard was named coach of the year.
🤓 Let the county help with your taxes.
- Dane County announced The Richard Dilley Tax Center is offering free tax preparation help for county residents. The service is available via appointment through the Dane County UW Extension Financial Education Center.
“The Richard Dilley Tax Center is here to help those who have questions about the tax process or have experienced changes that could affect their return. Making sure people file for all the credits available to them can mean a few thousand extra dollars in their pockets. The Richard Dilley Tax Center’s volunteers will guide residents through the process and make sure they don’t miss out on a potential refund.” — Joe Parisi, Dane County Executive
🧩 Piecing together the Judge Doyle Square puzzle.
- First things first: What is Judge Doyle Square? The Judge Doyle Square project has been in the works for more than a decade. The "square" itself represents a two-block area between John Nolen Drive and the Capitol.
- Minneapolis-based developer Mortenson Development is planning to take over construction rights to an 11-story, 222-unit apartment building, and parking garage, putting the last piece of the Judge Doyle Square puzzle into place.
- According to the State Journal, Mortenson has already taken over construction rights for a nine-story, 260-room hotel at the project site. If all goes to plan, construction of the hotel could begin in the coming months and the apartment later this year.
Judge Doyle Square sits on prime real estate downtown. Image via City of Madison.
🇺🇦 Wisconsin cooks for Ukraine.
- Acclaimed chef Tory Miller in collaboration with nearly a dozen local chefs are using food to raise money for Ukraine.
- Sunday March 27, L'Etoile will host (award-winning) chefs from Goodkind, Sanford, EsterEv, Birch on Pleasant, the Driftless Cafe, Amilinda, A Pig in a Fur Coat, and the Diplomat for an eight-course meal. The ticket price is $300 a person (wine included) and all proceeds will go to World Central Kitchen’s Ukraine relief efforts.
💔 Wisconsin's first female lieutenant governor has died.
- Margaret Farrow Wisconsin's first female lieutenant governor has died at 87. Former Gov. Tommy Thompson called her "the Margaret Thatcher of Wisconsin politics."
- Her public service career spanned nearly 50 years. A Republican, she was elected to the state Assembly in 1986, then to the state Senate in 1989. In 2001 she was appointed lieutenant governor and served a brief stint with then-Gov. Scott McCallum. The two lost their election for a full term in 2002.
📼 Your lunchtime read: Madison musician connects with his heritage and father by archiving Ho-Chunk recordings.
- From Wisconsin Life: "Clint Greendeer is a Madison-based musician and member of the Ho-Chunk Nation. A few years ago, his family member found an old box of cassette tapes belonging to Greendeer’s late father, Conroy Greendeer, Sr. [...] Some of the songs on the tapes date back centuries ago. Some of the tapes contain the only known recordings of these traditional Ho-Chunk songs."
🦠 Covid-19 Update
Wisconsin Vaccination Rate: 60.5%
Dane County Vaccination Rate: 78.2%
- 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: Wednesday, March 9
- Beer Bingo with Giant Jones Brewing Co. at Bierock. 6:30 p.m. Free to play.
- First Look at the Fest from the Wisconsin Film Festival. Admission includes film guide, food & drinks, and early access to trailers and ticket sales. 7 p.m. $40 advance, $50 doors.
- Hiss Golden Messenger, Alexa Rose at High Noon Saloon. Music at 8 p.m. $21 advance, $26 doors. 🟠
- Coheed and Cambria at the Sylvee. Music at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $29.50.
Wondering what 🟠 means? That symbol next to an event listing means that Tone Madison’s team of writers and editors recommends checking it out.