Thursday, January 28, 2010

Things to Do Around Monroe

Stop hibernating and come out to enjoy some of the area events this weekend. There are many choices for the arts in particular from a variety talent show to concerts.

~ Did you get your tickets to the Community Showcase of Talent at the Monroe Arts Center? The entertainment will be entirely homegrown on Friday and Saturday evenings, so come out and see what wonderfully talented people we have here in Cheese Country. Tickets are $10 a piece for general admission.

~ Go bowling and support high school athletics on Saturday evening. Four Seasons Bowl has a couples bowling event starting at 9 pm (check in at 8:30). All proceeds will go to the Freeport Pretzels sports programs. $40 per couple, door prizes.

~ Internationally acclaimed pianist David Gross is performing at the Freeport Masonic Lodge on Saturday afternoon starting at 3 pm. Come enjoy some wonderful music in Freeport's historic downtown. Adult tickets are $15, students are free.

~ Come listen to a variety of jazz on Sunday, also at Freeport's Masonic Lodge. There will be a concert featuring Dixieland Combo, Highland Community College Jazz Band, and Rock Valley Jazz Band. The event is sponsored by Highland Community College, and starts at 3 pm. Students are free, adults are $5.

~ Monticello has their annual Fisharee/Chickaree this Sunday. The free event is an outdoor celebration and ice fishing contest. There will be prizes for the largest fish caught, smallest fish caught and most fish caught and much more. The Lions Club also has their grilled chicken dinners available for purchase and carryout during the event. Come out and enjoy the weather that Mother Nature treats us to here in Green County.

~ On Monday, you can go out to dinner and support Relay For Life. Pizza Hut in Monroe is doing a fundraising event. Come eat at the buffet from 5 until 8, and all proceeds will go to the organization.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Property of the Week

This week's featured property is a commercial building in Monroe.

This is a great investment property with potential for whatever you need. There is over 4400 square feet of commercial space here, or you could take the 2066 square foot second floor and make it your residence with plenty of room in the 2338 square foot main floor for a business. You could also easily convert this spacious stone building into apartments. Elevator to all floors. This property is conveniently located a block off Monroe's beautiful downtown square. New furnace, new water heater and other improvements make this a good buy. Property is being sold as-is.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Business Spotlight

Being passionate supporters of both locally owned businesses and the environmental movement, we have been happy patrons of a New Glarus business for a while now. Recently, we have been hearing more and more people talk about this business, which warms our hearts.

Nikki's Diapers in New Glarus is an internet-based company turned brick and mortar store. We have had the pleasure of spending time with Nikki and her husband, and they are lovely people. They started the company from their home a number of years ago. Nikki wanted to fill the gaps for parents who were searching for quality cloth diapering items. Cloth diapering has come a long way from our grandparents' era, but you would never know it to see some of what is offered at the major national retailers. Niche businesses like Nikki's are helping make cloth diapering easier for parents of all budgets.

A few years ago, Nikki opened a retail space in New Glarus where she proudly offered not only cloth diapers and covers, but many other types of products as well. Now under the Planetwise umbrella, Nikki offers breastfeeding support items, babywearing slings and soft sided carrier, adorable soft baby shoes and legwarmers, wooden toys, reusable swim diapers, and much more. The New Glarus store has been one of our favorite places to stop in for a baby gift or supplies for our own children.

We want to congratulate Nikki because she recently opened a second brick and mortar retail location. There is now a Nikki's Diapers store in Madison as well, in Sauk Point Square on the corner of Old Sauk Rd and High Point for those of you familiar with the area. It is exciting to see a local business grow so well!

For those of you unfamiliar with Nikki's current New Glarus location, it is at 405 2nd St, just down the road from Tofflers and almost across the street from the park with the swimming pool. Hours there are limited to weekdays until 3:30, though the Madison store does have expanded hours. Otherwise, take advantage of her free shipping options and shop from home.

For those of you curious about cloth diapering, it really is easy. The environmental impact does make a big difference, in spite of what the studies commissioned by the disposable diaper companies claim. Go green and support a local business at the same time!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Things to Do Around Monroe

Wednesday means time to look ahead at what to do this weekend.

~ Future Forward! has a gathering tomorrow, Thursday, at Toffler's in New Glarus. They will reveal the results of the surveys, discuss the direction of the organization, how people can get invovled and the status of the creating of the non-profit group.

~ Monroe Theatre Guild has their annual meeting and party on Saturday. The events starts at 6 with time for socializing and membership renewals, followed by a potluck dinner at 6:30. There will be entertainment at 7, and the annual meeting begins at 7:15. The board will update members on how last year's season went, what is on tap for 2010's shows and workshops, the state of the capital campaign, and future plans for the building. This event is open to the public.

~ The Jimmy's will play at Tofflers on Saturday evening. The music starts about 8 pm.

~ Head over to SLICE for open skate times this weekend. Bring your ice skates or rent there. The open skate times are Friday from 5 to 6:45pm, Saturday 4:30 to 8, Sunday 4:30 to 6:45. It is always good to get out and move in the depths of winter!

~ Come support some of our local youth athletes this weekend. Many of the high school basketball and wrestling teams have games or matches in the area, and the YMCA has a wresting tournament too.

~ Remember the locally owned restaurants when making your plans for the weekend. We have some fabulous dining establishments locally, so visit one for a meal or two. Visit our Community Information page for a summary of area restaurants.

~ Plan ahead for your tickets to the Community Showcase of Talent at Monroe Arts Center on January 29 and 30.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Shakespeare Project

The Shakespeare on the Edge in Monroe is taking applications for this year's Shakespeare Project.

You think Shakespeare is boring??!! Then you have not experienced the Shakespeare Project! Check out Shakespeare in a way you never thought possible. Meet new friends. Be strengthened and transformed through art. With over 75% of all participants returning every year, something has to be good about this.

This is not your grandma's English class, this is fun!!!

The project this year will be held from February 4 through May 20 on
Thursdays 4-6pm at Monroe in the Primitive Soul Art Studio, just off the Square. There is also a workshop with David Daniels from American Players Theatre and a show at APT in June at no additional charge.

The value of this project is $800. Due to fund raising and generous contributions from individuals and organizations in our community, cost is only $100. Scholarships are available.

Class size is limited to 30 participants. No audition required, but youth must apply for a spot. To request more information or an application (Due by January 29th) please contact or
You can also call 608-325-5268

Monday, January 11, 2010

Future Forward reveals survey results

For months now, we have been mentioning the surveys that Future Forward! conducted throughout 2009. We hope that you took the time to fill out one, two or all seven!

The surveys are now finished, and the results are being tabulated. Filled out by current and former residents of Green County, these surveys give a nice snapshot of the strengths and weaknesses of our area.

Come to the Future Forward! meeting on January 21 to learn what the surveys show. What are the area strengths, and how can we capitalize on them? What are the weaknesses, and what can we do to improve them? Future Forward! will be discussing all of this, and looking for both member and community input on what should the role of Future Forward be in working with this information.

Everyone is welcome. This meeting is a must for all local business owners, human resources directors and government officials. The survey information can help show how we market the area to potential employees and residents. Local business can use the information to help determine wants and needs in the area.

Don't miss this meeting! Anyone who is interested in learning more can come to the free meeting at Toffler's in New Glarus on January 21. The event beings at 5 with nibbles and social time, sponsored by Dave Mosher and Associates. The informational part of the evening starts at 5:30.

We'll be there, and we hope to see there too!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

December 2009 Green County Market Report

Time for another monthly report on the Green County, Wisconsin real estate market.

Regarding the number of single family homes that sold in Green County in December of 2009:
  • 21 homes sold in December of 2009,
  • The homes were on the market for an average of 141 days,
  • The average sale price was $142,750,
  • The median sale price was $140,000,
  • The highest priced property sold was $250,000,
  • The lowest priced property sold was $49,900.
Volume-wise, this is a huge improvement from December of 2008:
  • 12 homes sold in December of 2008,
  • The homes were on the market for an average of 95 days,
  • The average sale price was $138,585,
  • The median sale price was $123,200,
  • The highest priced property sold was $264,000,
  • The lowest priced property sold was $58,425.
Historically, December is a very slow month for real estate sales, especially single family homes. I had to go back to 2005, the height of the real estate boom, to find a month where more homes sold in a December. so it is very interesting to see this many homes selling last month. Interestingly, the median home price sold in December of 2005 was $141,000, almost the same as last month too.

Coming on the heels of the November home sales holding steady, I am very heartened by the December statistics. I hope that the January sales are in this same vein.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Things to Do Around Monroe

Welcome back after the winter holiday break! Now that the festivities are over, are you looking for something to do this weekend?

~ The Young Professionals of Green County are having a Business Showcase this Thursday evening. Join them at Beast Buffet from 5:30 to 6:15 where 2009 YP of the Year Nominee, Eric Jerdee, will talk about the services his company has to offer for pets and farms. The YPs are doing a semi-formal event next week at The Dining Room at 209 Main in Monticello. Join them on Thursday evening for appetizers, drinks and conversation. $20 includes a drink and appetizers; RSVP via email, Facebook or LinkedIn by January 7.

~ Goetz Theater in Monroe is showing "Alvin and the Chipmunks 2: The Squeakquel", "Avatar", and "Sherlock Holmes" this weekend. Matinees are $6, evening shows $7.50, kids are always $5.

~ There is a gallery reception at Frehner Gallery at the Monroe Arts Center on Thursday evening from 5 until 7 pm. The new exhibit, Positive Matter, features both two and three dimensional pieces in oil, acrylic, painted steel and bronze.

~ Tofflers in New Glarus has live music this Saturday evening starting at 9 pm.

~ There is a Family Day at Oakdale Nature Center in Freeport this Sunday afternoon from 1 until 4 pm. There will be plenty of opportunities for creative nature play for the kids. Warm up with cookies and cocoa.

~ The kids get started on Saturday for the SCWA Youth League. The nine week South Central Wisconsin Archers league is a popular winter activity. Is this the first you have heard of it? There might still be a little time to enroll. Contact Al at 439-1819.

~ Saturday's weather looks to be chilly, but the mercury should top 20 on Sunday, perfect for getting out and enjoying some winter sports. The Green County cross country ski trails are open and ready for fun!

Property of the Week

This week's featured property is a split-level ranch in Monroe.

Bring the family home! This comfortable split level home located on a quiet street has all you need. 3 bedrooms, main floor laundry, living room with fireplace, family room, refinished wood floors, generous storage area, 2 car attached garage, spacious eat-in kitchen, bright rooms filled with natural lightening. The landscaped yard has plenty of room for kids, grandkids, pets or more gardens.

Introduction to Curling

The Alpine Curling Club is offering an Introduction to Curling class. This six week course begins on February 6th and runs through March 13. The class will be every Saturday evening from 6 until 8 pm. The cost will be $50 per adult, and teens over 13 can participate for free if they are accompanied by a paid adult.

Introduction to Curling will cover history, technique, etiquette and game strategy in the first two weeks. There will be four weeks of league-style play. Material (brooms and sliders) will be provided.

If you have been curious about curling, try your hand now and learn before the 2010 leagues form in the fall. Questions? Visit their website, contact Ryan Wild (558-3178) or John DiTulio (214-6110) or email Bob.