RIP Halloween House

Morning update: Monday, Sept. 12

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RIP Halloween House

Good morning, Madison!

I don’t know about you but this weekend’s rain has put me in an eerie fall mood. Summer is dead, long live summer (even though it might heat up again later this week, I digress).

Madison has always had an affinity for the spooky and kooky, and nothing illustrated that more so than the beloved Halloween house on the 1000 block of East Gorham Street. If you've never seen it, picture headstones, skeletons, gargoyles, and a giant spider crawling up the side of a house, spinning its webs and scaring passersby year round.

There was always something so comforting about the Halloween house to me. It's been a declaration of individuality in a neighborhood where new and identical apartments pop up every year, a space for creativity, and, most of all, just kind of creepy.

But like all good things, the era of East Gorham's Halloween house has come to an end. The house is now for sale and gone are (most of) the Halloween decorations. (Read more about it in Tone Madison.)

All that remains on the outside is a banner of flags with Jack Skellington’s face that reads: "Every Day is Halloween."

— Hayley

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🏥 The UW Health nurses' strike might end before it begins.

🚨 Get ready to slow down on Old Sauk Road.

  • As part of the city's Vision Zero initiative, the speed limit on a portion of Old Sauk Road — from Westfield Road to the Beltline — is now reduced from 35 mph to 30 mph.
  • What is Vision Zero? The initiative is a data-driven strategy aimed at eliminating traffic deaths and severe injuries on city streets by 2035.

👮‍♂️ The detective vying for Dane County Sheriff has been put on administrative leave.

  • Detective Anthony Hamilton was placed on administrative leave and escorted out of the Sheriff’s Department building Thursday, Channel 3000 reports. Hamilton asserts he was put on leave "for sharing confidential information."
  • If you'll recall: Hamilton is challenging Sheriff Kalvin Barrett for the top post in the Dane County Sheriff's office.
  • Shortly before being put on leave, Hamilton filed a civil lawsuit against Barrett, which an attorney representing Dane County called meritless.  

🏫 Anti-Semitic chalking was found around campus on the first day of classes.

  • Last week, multiple sidewalk chalkings appeared around the UW-Madison campus targeting Jewish student groups labeling them as “racist,” “genocidal,” and “having blood on their hands.”
  • In a statement, Vice Chancellor Lori Reesor and Deputy Vice Chancellor and Chief Diversity Officer LaVar Charleston condemned the incident but noted the chalk messages didn't violate any campus policy. The administrators recognized the messages as free speech, which the university supports even when it is "difficult and uncomfortable at times."
  • The bigger picture: This incident continues a trend of anti-Semitism on the UW-Madison campus. In March, a swastika was found etched into a dorm bathroom stall. In the same month, a student was met with anti-Semitic slurs on Langdon Street, and another individual was harassed for "looking Jewish."

🐢 Some good news: After three years, this turtle is going home.

  • Over the weekend, the Dane County Humane Society released a Blanding’s turtle back into the wild after it spent three years in rehab for burn injuries.
  • In 2019, the turtle was brought into DCHS with severe injuries suffered in a controlled prairie burn. DCHS’s Wildlife Center teamed up with UW-Madison veterinarians to provide medical care and treatments. The turtle was returned to her native habitat in Milton Saturday.

📚 Your lunchtime read: Work in progress.

  • Via Isthmus: "Throughout his eight years at Madison East High School, Kennedy Adeetuk taught English in a wing that he politely describes as “antiquated.” His classroom was separated from the others by thin folding partitions that did little to manage distractions and volume. [...]

    When Madison voters in 2020 approved a referendum to pay for needed school improvements, the installation of real walls was one of the top requests for the English department at East. Construction started this spring, with Adeetuk and the other English teachers having to work around wall removal and ceiling tile work during the last week of classes."
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