By Ross Cohen, REAP Food Group
Family Food Fest - Sunday, May 21 11am-2pm at Lincoln Elementary School, is a free community-based event put on by REAP Food Group that brings together students, parents, and community members to explore Farm to School! At Family Food Fest, kids will have the opportunity to partake in fun farm to school games, delicious local food samples, creative art projects, garden exploration, and physical activity challenges! Families will be able to meet local farmers, taste locally-grown produce, engage with community groups, and experience student dance performances. Activities will be fun, educational, and free for all ages.
We currently have 30 local businesses and organizations signed up as exhibitors who will be facilitating children-focused activities. Some activities include; making smoothies with a bike-powered blender, planting herbs and flowers that can be brought home, cooking demonstrations and many art projects. In addition, there will be a few food carts there selling affordable food and the first 200 attendents get a voucher for a free meal.
This free festival would be a great opportunity for Lake Edge Neighborhood children and residents to come engage in healthy, outdoor fun while growing their understanding of sustainable agriculture and farm to school practices.
Please contact Ross Cohen firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Family Food Fest will be held rain or shine.
By David Benforado, Madison Gas and Electric Company
As we announced in October of last year, Jeff Keebler succeeded Gary Wolter as President and CEO on March 1, 2017. Gary continues to serve as Chairman. Jeff has been with MGE since 1995 and has served in various leadership positions across the company. To help introduce him to the community during this planned transition, we have a number of online updates, including a Q&A with him at https://www.energy2030together.com. Jeff was instrumental in developing our Energy 2030 framework and is committed to MGE remaining a trusted energy partner in our community. He talks in the Q&A about a number of things beyond energy. We also have a new video with him at https://www.mge.com/Energy2030. You might see Jeff out and about in the community. If you do, say hello!
Since the introduction of our Energy 2030 framework, we've been working on a number of initiatives, including a proposal for a major wind farm:
Thank you for your time and interest in these matters. Please stay engaged in our energy future. We look forward to sharing updates with you periodically and through stories on our Energy 2030 website,
David J Benforado is the Community Services Manager at MGE - a proud sponsor of LENA!
by Paula Tiffany, Movin' Out, Inc.
Movin’ Out, Inc. is looking for homeowner’s in the Lake Edge neighborhood who have a family member with a disability and are in need of home repair or accessibility improvements. Movin’ Out Inc. is an agency committed to helping people with disabilities with housing. The ability to provide this assistance was made possible because of a generous gift from a family in the Lake Edge Neighborhood. In addition to having a family member with a permanent disability, families must also be below 80% county median income. If interested, please contact Movin’ Out for further details at 251-4446 ext. 7.
Paula Tiffany is the Housing Counselor at Movin' Out, Inc. located at 902 Royster Oaks Drive, Suite 105 - a proud sponsor of LENA!
Rutabaga Paddlesports is excited to open a kayak and stand-up paddleboard rental concession at the Olbrich Beach House this summer. We look forward to expanding our rental program to east-side Madison neighborhoods and to be able to offer additional instructional programs at this new location.
Weather permitting, we will be open 7 days a week beginning approximately May 20. Hours will be Mon-Fri from 10am to 8pm; Sat, Sun and holidays from 10am to 6pm. We will offer hourly rentals of sit-on-top single and 2-person kayaks, fishing kayaks and stand-up paddleboards (SUP). In addition to kayak and SUP rentals, we will sell snacks such as pretzels, ice cream, and non-alcoholic beverages, as well as small paddling accessories such as water bottles, glasses straps and sunscreen. We will also expand the opportunity for community members to store their personal canoes, kayaks or SUPs near the water with the addition of rack space for rent. Our most popular adult classes are also coming to Olbrich. Join us for a recreational kayak or stand-up paddleboard class, or for our full moon SUP community paddles. We hope in the future to offer additional youth programming at this location.
Rutabaga is all about creating communities where people can gather and learn to love the outdoors, particularly on the water. We are happy to help create such a community, and look forward to helping more people enjoy the lakes we all love and cherish.
For more information about rentals see: www.rutabaga.com/rentals
To learn more about classes see: learn.rutabaga.com
We look forward to seeing you this summer!
Nancy Saulsbury is the Director of Outdoor Programs and Amelia Musser is the Program Coordinator at Rutabaga Paddlesports located at 220 W Broadway - a proud sponsor of LENA!
By Sue Carr, Monona Grove Nursery School
Preschoolers are a bundle of energy and curious about all kinds of things. While they are exploring and playing it is important to provide some activities that aid in the development of the muscles needed to eventually have a comfortable pencil grip. In preschool, these activities can be fun and creative, while still building important muscles. Here are some of our favorites.
We use all kinds of tongs, tweezers, connected chop sticks, and pipettes to pinch, which strengthens the muscles in the thumb and forefinger. For the youngest kids, there are big, easy tongs that can be used to pick up pompoms or cotton balls. For older kids, tweezers can be used to pick of small things like beads or noodles. Think of the old game Operation! We also use pipettes to water color paint or to simply move water from one container to another. All preschoolers love that! The squeezing of the pipette and learning how it works strengthens the same muscles.
Play Doh and Clay:
We expose our kids to some form of playdoh, slime, or clay almost every day. The actions of rolling, pinching, pushing, stretching and kneading not only offer some sensory activities to stimulate the brain or calm the mood, but also builds the muscles in the wrists, hands and fingers. The strengthening of these muscles is key to being able to comfortable hold crayons, markers and pencils for future writing. Some of our favorite play doh add-ons are Potato Head pieces, birthday Candles, rolling pins and cookie cutters, and ice cream scoops. But anything that is washable can be played with at the playdoh table!
MGNS Play Doh Recipe
2 tsp. Cream of tartar 1-cup water
1-cup flour 1TBS.oil
½ cup salt food coloring
Put cream of tartar, flour and salt in pan on stove. Add water oil and coloring. Mix well. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until dough forms a ball.
Cool and kneed. Store the play dough in an air tight container in refrigerator.
On a bigger scale, working on vertical services usually engages more of the larger muscles- strengthening the shoulder, arm and core muscles of the body. We use chalkboard, dry erase boards, easels, and vertical lego walls to create spaces for kids to stand and work vertically. Other ideas would be to tape paper to the wall to allow the kids to draw or paint. Magnet games on the refrigerator, or using washable glass markers on a patio door or a large window are also fun activities. Using a big surface will usually engage the kids to use both hands and practice some of that all important crossing of the midline as well.
Easy Fine Motor Activities:
There are lots of other activities that all parents do that can be used or tweaked to specifically engage fine motor muscles. Stringing beads is an easy one. We use a piece of tape on the end of the yarn to create a hard end to string through and grab, and we sometimes use uncooked noodles (penne or wagon wheels) to string. If yarn is too hard, try using a pipe cleaner for easy stringing. Finger painting is also a great way to use those muscles, especially when you challenge your kiddos to use one or two fingers at time, or make small fingerprints. And simply putting a hole in a container, and having something for your little one work to push through the hole will really exercise those muscles. Pompoms work well, cotton balls, Cheerios.
In the end, all preschool age kids should be exploring and growing at their own rate and with their own choices. But if they are interested, you can easily provide activities that are fun and calming as well as muscle strengthening. Bonus!
Sue Carr is the Director at Monona Grove Nursery School located at 4200 Buckeye Road - a proud sponsor of LENA!
Articles are written and submitted by members of the Lake Edge Neighborhood Association, residents, business owners, community members, and elected officials in the Lake Edge neighborhood or vicinity.