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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Yowling cats, vandalism, and more

Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood e-Notice
                                                           April 10, 2013

                                                            LAW ENFORCEMENT ISSUE,
1 - Owners, Collect Your Free-Running Pets
2 - Vandals Hit Neighborhood:  Many Eyes Can Help Find Them
2a - Microchip Your Pet, April 21-27
3 - No Team Sports Allowed on Marlborough Park Field:  Report If You See Any
4 - How to Report Neighborhood Problems
5 - Prairie Burns Scheduled for April along Seminole Highway
(Attachments:  “1 map Dawley Conservancy.jpg” & “2 map Harlan Hills Conservancy.jpg”)
6 - Bus Hearing, Thur. April 11, 6:30 pm, Fitchburg Community Center
7 - DMNA President Bob Hague Does Litter Pick-up
8 - DMNA Council Member Burree Bowdoin Passes On

1 - Owners, Collect Your Free-Running Pets

Yowls and sharp howls woke neighbors in the middle of Tuesday night/Wednesday morning.  At first it was clear that one or more tomcats were doing the yowling, but later a coonhound was seen trotting around back yards giving voice like he might have been hot on the trail of a raccoon.  
Disturbed neighbors are talking about calling the Humane Society. City of Madison ordinances prohibit free-running pets.
If you are the owner of one of these animals, it would be a good time to rein in your cat or dog.  Or if you know the owner, please let that person know that some neighbors are getting tired of losing sleep.  
One cat is the big orange healthy-looking tom pcitured here.  The other cat is black and white with somewhat shaggy hair.  Both have been seen running loose and caterwauling in the Windflower Way/Milford Road area.  The coonhound or beagle is pale colored and muscular, definitely seen in the Milford Road area last night.                                                                                       by Mary Mullen

2a - Microchip Your Pet, April 21-27

Most of us never expect our beloved pets to be lost or stolen. The reality is that accidents do happen, and when they do, many owners are unprepared. Last year Dane County Humane Society (DCHS) received 1,047 dogs and 1,831cats brought to the shelter as strays.
According to Animal Service Officers, the two biggest reasons for losing a pet are children and workmen inadvertently letting them out of the house or yard. 71% of those dogs and only16% of the cats were returned to their owners! Many more pets could have been reunited with their owners had they been microchipped and/or tagged.
A microchip is the best way to reunite lost pets with their owners because tags can get separated from the animal. The combination of a tag and microchip give the best of both worlds by providing a visual ID and an implanted ID. Have your veterinarian check your chip yearly to make sure it remains up to date and in place.
No pet should be allowed outside its house without identification. Microchipping can be done on a walk-in basis whenever the shelter is open or by your veterinarian.
During National Pet Week, April 21-27, DCHS will be offering a $15 microchip and $5 ID tag special at the shelter on 5132 Voges Road. No appointment is necessary.
Please go to the DCHS website ( for directions and more information or call 608-838-0413.
2 - Vandals Hit Neighborhood:  Many Eyes Can Help Find Them

Vandals have hit Marlborough area community resources at least 3 times since March 29.   Targets were a Little Free Library, the community garden shed in Marlborough Park, and a bus stop sign.   Neighbors are asked to keep an eye out for the misguided person or persons who are doing damage and may strike again.
Early birds on Whenona Drive the morning of March 29 found the Little Free Library at Prairie UU Society torn off its post and lying on the ground. The library box itself was not hurt at all.  It was put back up within 2 days.
Then on April 8, sometime between 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., that same Little Free Library was vandalized again.  This time a brick had been used to shatter the plastic window.  Both the brick and the shards of the window were found underneath the LFL.
Prairie UU Society, this LFL sponsor, has reported the vandalism to police.
Probably the same day, April 8, vandals attacked the garden shed on the Marlborough Park Community Garden site. Gardener James Luscher discovered the damage and photographed it.
“When I was walking back from Boy's and Girl's Club this evening (Scrabble tournament) something about the garden shed looked 'odd' so I walked over instead of heading directly for my plot.  The rear window of the shed has been severely damaged,” he said.
He added, “I walked around the side of the shed and discovered that the bulletin board we mounted on the side has had the glazing nearly completely broken out and all of the announcements have been ripped off and thrown around the ground.”
In an e-mail, Mr. Luscher reported the vandalized shed to Micah Kloppenburg of the Community Action Commission.  Mr. Kloppenburg filed a written report to the police. CAC is the garden lessee.

That same afternoon, April 8, another resident who had some business at the Prairie UU building, found that 2 teenaged boys were lounging in the bus shelter on Crawford across from the church. They were taunting another boy who was at the bus stop on the other side.  That boy was holding up the bus stop sign.  When she returned a few minutes later, the bus stop sign was on the ground and the boy who had been holding it was gone.  This resident reported the downed sign to Madison Metro immediately.  However, it still hasn’t been put up again
While all this damage has been reported to the police, the perpetrators are unknown at this time.  We all need to be alert so they can be caught the next time they attempt to destroy our neighborhood amenities.
Read article #4 to learn how to best report vandalism.
                                                                                                            by Mary Mullen

3 -  No Team Sports Allowed on Marlborough Park Field:  Report If You See Any

Madison Parks playing fields and turf conditions have gone from bad to worse. We know that the spring rain is a welcome sign after last year’s drought, but the drought conditions did create poor turf conditions. Add to that a long winter, cabin fever – people just wanting to get outside and play, and this week’s forecast that calls for more rain and cooler temperatures is creating a perfect storm of fragile athletic field and turf conditions.
The Madison Parks athletic fields are utilized and reserved for many sporting leagues throughout the year. The leagues have paid to reserve and use these fields for their league play. If the fields are torn up now, the fields will be unsafe and the leagues will not be able to play on them because of the time it takes to repair the damage. This has a cascading effect on field scheduling for the rest of the year. Violators of the ban are being assessed for the damages caused this spring.
If you see any teams out practicing or playing on the Madison Parks athletic fields, please call the Madison Parks Manager on Duty at (608) 239-7187.
                                                                        from Laura Whitmore, Madison Parks Division

4 - How to Report Neighborhood Problems  

Ed Marshall, our new community liaison officer, suggests that a crime in progress should be reported to 911.  But if damage is done and no one is in sight, call the West Police District number, 608-243-0500.  
There are many other options for reporting if a crime is not in progress.  Several are noted here.
Citizens may call the Madison Police Department Self-Reporting Unit at 245-3662.  The hours of this unit are Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.   If doing things online is your cup of tea, fill out a  complaint form for non-emergency incidents to the Citizen Self-Reporting Unit at <file://localhost/police/sru>
Or you may pick up a paper Self-Report Form from the West District Police Station although that is very distant from our neighborhood. (The Madison part of our neighborhood is in the West District.) The West District is located at 1710 McKenna Blvd.  The West District is shown on the map at right.  The Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood is just south of the Beltline on the far east edge of the District.
We can also let Ed Marshall know about vandalism directly  by sending an e-mail to  Ed Marshall MPD <>

In addition, the City of Madison website has a “Report a Problem” web page  that has forms to report a host of problems ranging from abandoned bicycles and vehicles; dead or live animals; graffiti; and more. “Report a Problem” can be found a <file://localhost/reportaproblem>


5 - Prairie Burns Scheduled for April along Seminole Highway
(Attachments:  “1 map Dawley Conservancy.jpg” & “2 map Harlan Hills Conservancy.jpg”)
This month (April), weather permitting, the City of Fitchburg will be conducting prescribed burns at a number of park and natural areas .  Two will be in or near the Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood - one on the Dawley Conservancy south of Dunn’s Marsh and the other on the east side of Seminole Highway in Harlan Hills.

The purpose of the burns is to promote native prairie vegetation and oak regeneration.  Prescribed burns are an essential tool for restoring and maintaining prairie, oak savanna and oak woodland habitats.  These habitat types have declined dramatically throughout Wisconsin since initial European settlement in the mid 1800s.  Despite the rarity of these habitats, healthy prairies, oak savannas and woodlands support a disproportionate amount of biodiversity and  harbor many regionally rare and declining species.   
The burns will  be conducted by Adaptive Restoration Environmental Consulting, the company the City has hired to care for its prairies and conservancy areas.
Adaptive Restoration will provide up to 24 hours advance notice of the burn, and they will notify all appropriate authorities prior to the burn. Their burn crew consists of trained firefighters with all the equipment necessary to keep the fire under control.  In preparation for the burn, Adaptive Restoration will be mowing or cutting vegetation around  the areas to be burned as necessary. These temporary paths will be used to contain the fire within the park.
On the day of the burn, we ask that you avoid visiting the park until the burn is complete, so the burn crew may do their work safely and efficiently. The burn will be conducted on a day when weather conditions allow for a safe burn with minimal smoke impact on your neighborhood and local roads. However, we recommend keeping windows and doors closed to keep smoke or the smell of smoke out of your home.
For more information, please contact Fitchburg City Forester Ed Bartell at 608-270-4289 or Mike Healy, Restoration Ecologist with Adaptive Restoration 608-554-0411.
                                                                        by Ed Bartell, Fitchburg Forester
6 - Bus Hearing, Thur. April 11, 6:30 pm, Fitchburg Community Center, 5510 Lacy Rd.
This hearing was covered in the 3/29/13 issue of the Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood e-News.  Madison Metro is proposing to eliminate some of the bus #18 service in the Belmar part of the neighborhood.  Now the #18 comes into the neighborhood at Lovell Lane, turns down Allied and then east on Crescent.  Then it goes north all the way up Red Arrow Trail.  The proposed change would eliminate Allied/Crescent/Red Arrow Loop.
For more information contact Ahna Bizjak, Transportation Engineer, at 270-4262.
At its April 3 meeting, the Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood Council took a position against eliminating the loop.  This position was conveyed to Madison Metro by the DMNA Vice President David Kovach.

7 -  DMNA President Bob Hague Does Litter Pick-up
Remember back in the fall of 2011 when a big liquor store was proposed for Madison Plaza near the Mobil Station?  The neighborhood beat back that proposal. One of the points was that the neighborhood was already littered with alcohol containers from the one liquor store we have now on the Beltline Frontage Road.  
At the public hearing before the Madison Alcohol License Review Committee, we showed 2 bags of containers picked up along the frontage roads.
Recently DMNA President Bob Hague did another litter pick-up run and took a photo of the “loot.”   His comment that came along with the picture is:  “Just a reinforcement that we made the right call in opposing the liquor store. I picked these Saturday on either side of the Beltline, in about 15 minutes.”
                                                by Mary Mullen, photo by Bob Hague

8 - DMNA Council Member Burree Bowdoin Passes On

The oldest member of the Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood Council, Burree Bowdoin, in her 90s, died this past week.  She had been a member of the Council since October 2011, attending quite faithfully until she fell at her home and broke her hip late in December 2012.
Burree was active in politics, and had strong opinions candidates and about voting in elections. When voter picture IDs were required for one Wisconsin election, she did not want to be prevented from voting because of lack of a photo ID.   I helped her get one at the Motor Vehicle Department and learned a lot in the process.
She is missed.
                                                                        by Mary Mullen
This issue of the Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood e-News started out as a notice to the owners of yowling cats and a howling dog, but obviously, it grew.

Here’s the masthead, at the end rather than the beginning.  We must be flexible, right?

Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood e-News  
April 10, 2013

The DMN e-News and an occasional hard copy DMN News are published by the Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood Association (DMNA) on an “as-needed” schedule.  The Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood Association, Inc. has been working to unite neighbors to solve mutual problems and promote fellowship among neighbors since 1973.  Our neighborhood is in Madison & Fitchburg.
               President, Bob Hague,   218-1760
               News contact, Mary Mullen,  298-0843
               Website: <> (Take a look.)
               On Facebook:  Just type Dunn’s Marsh into the Facebook search box.
                                        THANKS FOR READING.

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