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23 new Madison restaurants you'll love

Each year brings with it a swath of new eateries, and with new eateries comes excitement. We love what?s fresh and untested but also untainted. Sure, some are more hyped than others (we?re looking at you, Sujeo, Cento, Rare and the Edgewater), but even the low-key taco joints and quaint caf�s offer intrigue?maybe this is the place we?ve been waiting for. Whether it?s a go-to date night spot, an equal parts convenient and tasty takeout joint on the way home from work or the perfect neighborhood bar, the following twenty-three places offer something in the way of excitement, many for more reasons than one, and we couldn?t be happier to welcome them to town.

KEY
$ <$10
$$ $10?$15
$$$ $15?$25
$$$$ $25+
(price indicates cost of a dinner entr�e)




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Food pantry looks for donations, clicks in online competition

An area food pantry is looking for community generosity or Internet clicks this holiday season.

The Verona Area Needs Network, which provides assistance to low-income families in the Verona Area School District, hopes to move to a new location next year. It has been responding to needs in the Verona and Fitchburg area for 28 years, but is now looking for some extra help.

The problem is not a flow of food, but a shortage of space. The small building on Franklin Street in Verona houses a food pantry for those who need it, but the pantry itself has new needs. Pantry coordinator Karen Fletcher has been getting donations from a high school food drive that still has two weeks to go.

"You can see pretty much the shelves are full so we don't have enough storage," Fletcher said. "I've had to take things home and put it in our sunroom just to store it."

County budget targets ‘pressing needs’

The Dane County Board of Supervisors approved an operating budget of about $530 million for 2015 and a capital budget of just under $41.7 million Monday night.

According to a county news release, board president Sharon Corrigan said the budget addresses the county’s “most pressing needs.” She cited emergency response, homelessness and “smarter” criminal justice as examples... Read More

New Century changes focus to STEM

Five years after remaking itself into a “green” charter school to ensure its survival, New Century School is once again aiming for a new niche.

That doesn’t mean it will completely turn away from environmental lessons or getting students out-of-school experiences, but its classroom concentration will move in the same direction as many others around the country – Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, or STEM. 

Site council and board of directors member Katie Smith presented the school’s charter renewal application, which includes the STEM curriculum goals, to the school board Monday night, and it got a mostly warm welcome. ... Read More

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Girls on the Run founder visits, inspires Leopold group

Girls on the Run, which just completed its sixth season, is part of a national organization founded in 1996 that aims to empower young girls while also instilling physical fitness into the lessons. ... Read More

Firefighters battle house fire in Verona

Firefighters from multiple jurisdictions battled a house fire in Verona early Monday morning.

The fire on Aspen Avenue was called in around 3:30 a.m. When firefighters arrived, they found smoke and flames shooting out of the building, according to Lt. Marc Lindquist.

Six departments were called to assist Verona Fire. Lt. Marc Lindquist said crews switched out every 20 minutes because the temperature was 5 degrees.

"That's about the air time they use on their cylinders. So what we like to do is get them out of the building, change the cylinder, recoup a little bit and then they can go back in," Lindquist said. "When one company or one team has been working for quite a while we bring them out, try to get them refreshed, try to get them some warm liquids."

Lindquist said a smoke detector alerted the family to the fire and they got out safely. He said the fire appeared to have started in the back of the house.

Fire department on track for 24-hour staffing

As construction of the city’s new $10 million fire station progresses, plans for increasing the city department’s staffing are also under way.

The settlement of a lawsuit between the Local 311 firefighters union and the city includes some provisions for adjusting the structure of the department, and budget deliberations this month are expected provide some of the funding to make those changes possible. 

Verona Fire Department chief Joe Giver said the changes are in line with what the city had hoped to do last year when it began a hiring process for the new city-run department. That process was put on hold due to a lawsuit by the full-time firefighters. But now the staffing reorganization is back on track... Read More