September 9, 2011



Please feel free to contact me with any concerns or opinions you might have.

Office Phone: (608) 266-7505
Toll-free Phone: (800) 361-5487



Mailing Address:

State Capitol
P.O. Box 7882
Madison, WI 53707


Web Site:












Supporting our neighbors and being involved in our community is of the utmost importance. Some community events that might be of interest to you and your family are listed below. 



Indian Summer Festival
September 9 at 4 p.m. until September 11 at 8 p.m.
Attend this cultural event where you can enjoy crafts such as basket weaving, moccasin making, and wildlife carving, eat traditional food, and listen to live music performances. The main event of the festival is the pow wow competition, featuring dancers in full regalia competing to drum groups from across the country. You can also observe the Grand Entry at the beginning of each day that includes tribal veteran color guard groups. Indian Summer runs Friday from 4 p.m. to midnight, Saturday from noon to midnight, and Sunday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. with a special prayer ceremony that starts at 10 a.m. Admission is $12 for adults, while seniors over 60 are $10 and kids 12 and under are free. CLICK HERE for more information.

Henry Maier Festival Park (MAP)
200 N. Harbor Drive
Milwaukee, WI 53202
(414) 273-3378



Frank Mots International Kite Festival

September 10 and 11
Stop by Milwaukee's lake front this weekend to join in the annual Frank Mots International Kite Fesitval. This unique family event begins with a grand kite launch of at least 600 kites on Saturday, September 10 at noon. Kite professionals will perform over the course of the weekend. Food will also be available at the event. The kite festival will take place on September 10 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and September 11 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, please CLICK HERE.


Veterans Park (MAP)

1010 N. Lincoln Memorial Drive

Milwaukee, WI 53202


Visions and Revisions of an Urban River

September 12 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Join the Milwaukee River Greenway Coalition on Monday, September 12 for an evening with John Gurda, John Norquist, and Nik Kovac. John Gurda will lead attendees through the Milwaukee River’s earliest settlements, industries, swimming schools, and amusement parks to the darker days of degradation and pollution. Former Mayor John Norquist will share how a new urbanist vision shaped the revitalization of the riverfront with the RiverWalk District and the removal of the North Avenue Dam. Finally, Nik Kovac, 3rd District alderman, will share the river’s latest chapter, including efforts to protect and plan for 878 acres of urban wilderness called the Milwaukee River Greenway. The event takes place at the Urban Ecology Center’s Community Room. This event is free and open to the public. To view the brochure for the event, please CLICK HERE.


Urban Ecology Center (MAP)

1500 E. Park Place
Milwaukee, WI 53211
(414) 964-8505


Bay View Bash

September 17 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Bay View Bash is Milwaukee’s largest all-volunteer street festival on Kinnickinnic Avenue between Potter and Clement. Join me at this annual neighborhood festival, which will feature booths offering food and drinks, merchandise, and information about groups located in our community.
For more information about this fun, family-friendly event, please CLICK HERE.

Tomato Romp!
September 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Enjoy one of Milwaukee's messiest events of the year. Attend the annual Tomato Romp, which includes an old fashioned tomato fight and a Bloody Mary competition. Tomato Fighters must be at least 16 years old to participate. Everyone signing a waiver and donating $3 to Feeding America can get in the cage at 3 p.m. in the parking lot between Beans & Barley and Von Trier. The Best Bloody Mary competition begins at 11 a.m. and goes through 3 p.m. at the various bars in the district. For $10 you get 12 5-ounce samples. For an extra $5 you'll get beer chasers provided by Pabst. The official judging of the winner takes place at 3:30 p.m. Both Bloody Mary and Fight registration will take place in the Beans & Barley parking lot. Call (414) 224-0212 or CLICK HERE for additional information.

Global Union
September 17 and 18 from noon to 5 p.m.

Watch bands from all over the world as they take the stage at Bay View's Humboldt Park Bandshell.
This annual two-day concert will offer musical performances from noon to 5 p.m. each day and is free and open to the public. Please CLICK HERE for more information.

Humboldt Park (MAP)
3000 S. Howell Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53207
(414) 482-4270


















































































































































































Dear Friend,

This Sunday, our nation will be recognizing the 10-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. This weekend, we should all take a moment and remember where we were when we heard of the attacks. We should recall the days afterward and how the United States stood united in our resolve to not be intimidated by these acts of destruction and cowardice.


I was a student at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee then and remember hearing the news from a friend when I arrived to campus that morning. We watched in horror as the second plane hit the World Trade Center.

September 11, 2001, took too many U.S. lives and changed all others. The grief of 9/11 brought us closer together as a nation and in each of our communities. Before this tragedy, I had not been interested politics or paid much attention to how my community was affected by state and national policies. It was only afterward that I became more aware and decided to get involved. I, along with many others, committed to making a better community and ensuring our greatest days as a country remained ahead.


Chris Larson
State Senator, District 7




Remembering 9/11

There will be several events going on in our community this weekend to honor the victims and heroes of 9/11. For those looking to participate in such events, please see the information listed below.


9/11 Remembrance Memorial in Oak Creek

September 11 at 8:45 a.m.
The Oak Creek Fire Department cordially is hosting a 9/11 Remembrance Memorial, marking the 10-year anniversary of the terror attacks in New York, Pennsylvania and at the Pentagon. The Oak Creek Fire Department will also be dedicating a new monument at Fire Department Headquarters, located at 6th & Rawson.


Oak Creek Fire Department Headquarters (MAP)

7000 S. 6th Street
Oak Creek, WI 53154


Ceremony of Remembrance at St. John Lutheran Church

September 11 at 9:45 a.m.

Join members of St. John Lutheran Church and Cudahy to retell the history and remember those that were lost in the 9/11 tragedy. There will also be time set aside to remember members of the military who have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Cudahy's Mayor, Police Chief and Fire Chief will also be present to say a few words and accept thanks for their work as first responders in our community.


St. John Lutheran Church (MAP)

4850 S. Lake Drive

Cudahy, WI 53110

(414) 481-0520


Oak Creek Historical Society's Fall Festival
September 11 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
This free, fall event features a variety of history-oriented demonstrations and music, including a working blacksmith, a basket weaver, Civil War and World War II re-enactors, and dozens of artifacts. A special tribute to the victims of September 11 will take place at 11:30 a.m.

Visitors can also enter the $1 raffle for a chance to win a handmade quilt, an autographed Green Bay Packer football from the 2010 Super Bowl championship season and more. Luncheon items, baked goods and many other items will be available for sale.


Oak Creek Historical Society grounds (MAP)

3301 E. Forest Hill Avenue

Oak Creek, WI 53154


United We Stand
September 11 at 3 p.m.
Honor the victims, heroes and first responders of September 11 with the Bel Canto Chorus and the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra at this free outdoor concert. "United We Stand" includes performances of classical music, a processional march by the Milwaukee Fire Department Honor Guard, and invocations and prayers from faith leaders of the Interfaith Conference of Greater Milwaukee. The Midwest Vocal Express male a cappella chorus and the Bel Canto Boy Choirs will present a patriotic prelude beginning at 2:15 p.m.


Guests can also arrive early to make a prayer flag with free supplies provided by the Peace and International Issues Committee of the Interfaith Conference.

Audience members are encouraged to bring blankets and chairs for lawn seating. Premium tickets are also available for purchase.

Cathedral Square Park (MAP)
520 E. Wells Street
Milwaukee, WI 53202
(414) 257-8005


Homeless Veterans Benefit
September 11 at 7 p.m.
Singer-songwriter Jason Moon plays a benefit for the Homeless Veterans Initiative sponsored by Milwaukee Veterans for Peace. David Kaye opens.

The Coffee House (MAP)
631 N. 19th Street
Milwaukee, WI 53233
(414) 299-9598


September 11 Documentary Screening: Rebirth
September 11 at 7 p.m.

Marquette University will screen a documentary in the Weasler Auditorium tracking the healing of five people affected by the World Trade Center terrorist attacks. The showing of "Rebirth" is free and open to the public and features the work of field producer Danielle Beverly, visiting professional-in-residence in digital media for the J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication. Beverly will introduce the film and answer questions afterward.

Weasler Auditorium at Marquette University (MAP)
1442 W. Wisconsin Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53233



Supporting Legislation to Limit Influence of Special Interests

I am co-sponsoring legislation with Rep. Kelda Helen Roys, to ban campaign fundraising while the state budget is being considered. This legislation would prohibit elected state officials and their campaign committees from accepting contributions from January 1st of odd-numbered years through the date of enactment of the budget bill. Those individuals who want to make contributions to a campaign may still do so, after the budget has been enacted.


This bill will help to maintain the integrity of our government by removing the influence of special interest over the most important bill passed each session.


Wisconsinites value open and clean government and have continuously sought to preserve our tradition of accountability and transparency. This bill reaffirms that our budget should reflect Wisconsin's priorities and values. My colleagues and I hope this legislation will limit outside influence in the future to guarantee that our budget reflects the will of the people and not the whims of special interests and big corporations.

To view a copy of the bill, CLICK HERE.



Ensuring Public Review of Legislation

I am also co-sponsoring a bill to ensure that legislation is not rapidly pushed through the legislative process without adequate scrutiny and input from the public. This legislation would require a 21-day review period between the time a bill is introduced in either house and the time that house votes on the bill. In cases of emergency, the bill provides that the 21-day review period can be suspended if two-thirds of members vote to do so.

Although the practice of rushing legislation through has been around for years, this past spring it was brought it to a whole new level. Legislative rules were hastily broken and open meetings laws were ignored to hurriedly pass extreme legislation. Such backward actions barred the public and those representing them from effectively studying and reviewing bills in order to provide thoughtful input.


This legislation will increase public scrutiny, government accountability and transparency, which are the pillars of Wisconsin's tradition of open government.

To view a copy of the bill CLICK HERE.




St. Francis Hosts Community Festival

This past week St. Francis held their annual St. Francis Days at Vretenar Municipal Park. I was honored to have the opportunity to participate in this family-friendly event that hosts the city's largest parade each year. A huge thank you to everyone that attended St. Francis Days and to the City of St. Francis and all groups involved for putting together this great event for our community.



Laborfest a Great Reminder

I attended Milwaukee's annual Laborfest event over the holiday weekend complete with a massive Labor Day parade that started at Zeidler Union Square Park and worked its way to the Summerfest grounds, which was followed by a free festival. I would like to extend my deepest thanks to all of our neighbors for participating in this fun community event and also to those that made this event possible.


As we celebrate the contribution of Wisconsin workers, we also rededicate ourselves to investing in an economic recovery plan that brings good, family-supporting jobs to our state.



Visiting Neighborhood Meetings this Week

Thank you to all of the neighbors that took time out of their busy week to participate in events aimed at improving our community. This past Wednesday, I joined our neighbors at the Cudahy Family Library to attend a meeting on economic development in our community. I was also able to stop by the Historic Water Tower's Neighborhood Association meeting to discuss important issues to our community including adding a pedestrian and bike lane to our Hoan Bridge and obtaining an ID for voting in Wisconsin.


The thoughtful comments and questions that were presented at both meetings are greatly appreciated. Hearing your perspective on issues that will have a significant impact on our community is crucial as we continue working together through this legislative session.



Hoan Bridge Petition

The Hoan Bridge is crucial to our neighbors as it is the transit artery connecting south side residents to the rest of their community, including downtown Milwaukee and the entire interstate freeway system. Expanding access to the Hoan Bridge would be a positive step forward in cementing our city’s commitment to providing multi-modal forms of public transit, while simultaneously promoting tourism and business. Play the video below to learn more.



If you would like to sign on to the petition to request that DOT create a bicycle and pedestrian lane on the Hoan Bridge, please CLICK HERE. Feel free to encourage your family, friends and neighbors to show their support by circulating this petition throughout your community. CLICK HERE to download or print the PDF for the Petition to Bike the Hoan.


For up-to-date information about the Hoan Bridge project, please CLICK HERE to visit DOT's recently-launched Web site devoted to the project. You can also CLICK HERE to view a PDF document from DOT that outlines the Hoan Bridge rehabilitation project. This document provides additional information on the timing and scope of the project, along with contact information for the project personnel from the DOT. If you are looking for more information about the benefits of a bicycle and pedestrian lane on the Hoan Bridge feel free to visit the Bike the Hoan Web site by CLICKING HERE.


Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or thoughts you have on the Hoan Bridge project, including the proposed bicycle and pedestrian lane.




Session to Resume this Month

The 2011-2012 Legislative Session is scheduled to resume on September 13. If you are looking to stay up-to-date on the issues that are important to you, I encourage you to take advantage of the following free legislative resources:


Wisconsin Legislative Notification System - An email notification system offered by the Legislature that alerts subscribers of legislative activities relating to issues that they have identified as important. CLICK HERE for more information.

Committee Calendars - Tracks all upcoming committee meetings and public hearings. To view a copy of the calendar, please CLICK HERE.


WisconsinEye - Provides the public with unfettered access to committee meetings, public hearings, session days and other government activities, which allows the public to view legislative debate and policy-making without editing, commentary or analysis. CLICK HERE to watch videos made available by WisconsinEye.


Eye on Lobbying - Keeps track of which organizations are opposing or supporting proposed legislation. To visit this Web site offered by the Government Accountability Board, please CLICK HERE.




Intern at the Capitol

I currently have an opening for a legislative intern in my Madison office. A legislative internship is a great opportunity for students and recent graduates to learn more about the legislative process while gaining practical work experience.

With Interns from the Spring 2011 Semester

Intern responsibilities vary, but include policy research, summarizing proposed legislation, and responding to constituent inquires. All interns also assist with general office operations, including answering the phone.

Applicants must be able to work during normal business hours, and dedicate a minimum of 10 hours each week to the internship. All intern positions are unpaid.

To apply for an internship, please submit a cover letter and resume electronically to or mail them to Wisconsin State Capitol, P.O. Box 7882, Madison, WI 53707.




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