All Blog Entries by Samantha Haas

Found 87 blog entries published by Samantha Haas.

If Madison is considered the heart of Dane County, then its veins are the network of highways circulating people and goods throughout surrounding communities. Among them are I-94 and Hwy. 12/18, which branch out to another pulsing artery east of I-39/90: the village of Cottage Grove.

Having experienced a 500% growth rate since 1990, the village of Cottage Grove now has a population of nearly 7,000. Surrounded by open rolling prairies and farm fields, there is enough room for continued residential and business growth.

“Dane County is one of the fastest growing in the state,” said village Trustee Melissa Ratcliff, “And our communities all get stronger because of it.” In the five years her family has lived here, Ratcliff said she’s enjoyed

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At the turn of the 20th century, many new house styles emerged in America in opposition to the ornate, Victorian influences from Europe. Through the Arts and Crafts movement, Craftsman style homes were built to be more simplistic and to incorporate quality, natural materials like stone and wood. Frank Lloyd Wright also created the Prairie style of “organic architecture” during this time, with lower profile buildings that blended into the landscape and utilized sunlight. This movement made its way to Madison in the early 1900s, and Craftsman-progressive-prairie styles account for a third of the houses in the Sherman Avenue and Orton Park historic districts, for example.

Nearly 100 years later, Craftsman homes have edged out ranch homes for the most

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Whether you enjoy running, walking, skating, or biking, the Madison area offers countless paths to explore.

Fitchburg is one of 18 communities in Wisconsin that has been named a Bicycle Friendly Community by The League of American Bicyclists since 2012. For a map of the trails in this growing city, click here.

Fitchburg is also home to the area’s first bike roundabout, which can be accessed from the Allied-Dunn’s Marsh Community near Arrowhead Park. Here you’ll have the option to connect to five paved trails depending on which direction you take from the roundabout.

  • Badger State Trail (pass required): 40-mile trail from Fitchburg south to Illinois border

  • Capital City State Trail (pass required): 17-mile trail from Fitchburg

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The Village of Oregon is over 175 years old, but the last few years have been particularly noteworthy for the nearly 10,000 residents in this community just 10 miles south of Madison.

New building projects have been popping up all over -- from single-family homes on the south and west sides to the village’s first hotel in recent history on the east side. And downtown, several Main Street buildings have been refurbished while others have been cleared to make room for a high-demand apartment complex.

But perhaps the most memorable project has been the village’s new welcome center, located in the restored 1899 pump house beneath the “Tin Man” water tower on Janesville Street. Shortly after moving here around 2013 for the “small-town and

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The city of Verona has seen significant growth over the last few decades, but one thing that has been a constant reminder of its “Hometown USA” charm is the downtown grocery store.

Miller and Sons Supermarket has been the hub of the community for over a century, back when the population was less than 500. Now, more than 13,000 people call Verona home.

Miller's is a place where you can catch up with friends and neighbors, enjoy an old-fashioned sweet treat, support a local cause at a brat fry, and even get help taking your groceries to your vehicle.

The majority of Miller’s customers are regulars, like John and Carol McKinley, who have shopped here ever since they moved to Verona in 1974. Even if they just need to grab a couple of

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Halfway between Madison and Mount Horeb along Hwy. 18/151 is Verona, one of the fastest growing cities in Wisconsin. Verona’s population has nearly doubled in the last 20 years, hovering around 13,000 people and prompting the school, residential, and business districts in “Hometown USA” to expand.

Jason Stampfli, a 1996 Verona Area High School graduate, recalls shooting hoops in the driveway as a kid and being able to run after the basketball if it bounced into Main Street. With the increased amount of traffic that now comes through the downtown corridor, that’s no longer recommended. However, it was the familiar hometown charm and accessible location that prompted him to return two years ago to open Stampfli Mortgage, LLC on that same street.

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Tucked between Century Ave and the southeastern edge of the Pheasant Branch Conservancy in Middleton is a popular condo community called Woodcreek Village.

Built in the 1980s, these 2-4 bedroom ranch and townhouse style units, sited on approximately 18 acres, are sought after for their natural views, quiet setting, and proximity to the shopping and recreational amenities offered in Middleton and Madison.

Many of the residents here enjoy outdoor activities, so having a deck that looks out onto the woods with sunset views and quick access to the trails of the Pheasant Branch Conservancy are ideal features. The residences backing the conservancy are especially favored by their owners and prospective buyers for the sweeping views of the

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As "the only Waunakee in the world," this growing village north of Madison is known for its close-knit community, abundance of parks, and convenient location.

Take it from Ellen Schaaf, who has lived in Waunakee for 18 years and has been the executive director of the Waunakee Area Chamber of Commerce for the last 13. She grew up in Madison and started the house search after she got married and had her first child. "What was important to us was a forward-thinking, smaller community close to things, and Waunakee met that bill for us," she said. Schaaf is passionate where she lives, citing the village's small-town feel that's close to the big city.

This special "essence" of Waunakee is what called Brent Bickel to move here to start a new

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Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959) gets a lot of attention -- and deservedly so -- for the mid-century modern homes and buildings he's designed in the Madison area. But less than 8 years after he attended civil engineering classes at UW-Madison, so did another "Frank" who would also become a prominent 20th century architect in a much different style.

Perhaps best known for designing what is now the Governor's Mansion and several other Period Revival homes in Maple Bluff, Frank Morris Riley (1875-1949) helped shape the look and feel of many of Madison's premier neighborhoods, including University Heights, Nakoma, Shorewood Hills, and along Sherman Avenue and Wingra Park. He also designed the Brittingham House in the Highlands, which is now the official

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With Christmas music taking over the radio before Thanksgiving and many trees and lights up shortly thereafter, it's safe to say the holiday season is here. Many Dane County communities are already planning wintry events for the first part of December, including these listed below - with or without snow. Be sure to check out the websites for detailed schedules and associated costs.

Cambridge Classic Christmas
When: November 30-December 2
Where: Downtown Cambridge
What: Santa and Mrs. Claus come to Cambridge in time for the community Christmas tree lighting Friday evening. Saturday features horse drawn wagon rides, caroling, shopping, and crafts, and Sunday morning is breakfast with Santa.

Victorian Holiday Weekend
When: November 29-December 2
Where:

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