January 17, 2019

Sun Prairie Clock Tower Express Logo

Department Updates

City Clerk's Office: The City of Sun Prairie will not be having a February Spring Primary. Learn about how you can become a poll worker today!

City Engineering: Learn more about the 2019 streets that will be under construction. Apply to create a Storm Drain Mural today!

Economic Development: Jimmy will make his prognostication on Saturday, February 2! Don't miss a special appearance or the many Groundhog Day Specials!

Finance Department: At least the first installment of your property tax bill must be paid to the City of Sun Prairie by January 31, 2019. Learn more about payment options and how to make yours today.

Human Resources Department: The City of Sun Prairie is accepting applications for Police Officers at this time. Learn more about other job opportunities.

Parks & Recreation Department: We will be switching registration systems, learn how to migrate your account and about upcoming events including Ballroom Dancing and Future Leaders of Sun Prairie: Teen Leadership Workshop.

Police Department: Join us in welcoming Officer L. Broesch and celebrating Officer G. Nichols who was recently honored by Target. See photos from National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day.

Public Works Department: Reminders on Collection Carts, Snow Emergencies and Holiday Tree Collections. The Recycle Center will be closed on Monday, January 21.

Sun Prairie Media Center: We're offering more coverage of City meetings than ever and will also be covering Groundhog Day Downtown live and on 103.5 FM. Did you miss the Mayor's State of the City? Stream it on demand today!

Sun Prairie Public Library: There are a variety of upcoming events including a model train show and a presentation on Black Male Suffrage in Wisconsin. What happens when you invite a T-Rex to a tea party? Find out at the special storytime tea party. The Library will be closed on Monday, January 21.

City Clerk

February Spring Primary Information

THERE WILL NOT BE A FEBRUARY SPRING PRIMARY FOR THE CITY OF SUN PRAIRIE. All four alderpersons, the mayor, and the municipal judge up for re-election in the City of Sun Prairie have submitted nomination papers. There are no challengers to these offices, which does not require a primary on February 19, 2019. The next election in the City of Sun Prairie will be April 2, 2019.

Interested in Being a Poll Worker?

The City of Sun Prairie is looking for individuals to serve as election officials for the 2020-21 election cycle. There will be four elections held in 2020; including a very large presidential election.

The primary goal is to involve residents in the voting process as election officials and to bring awareness and understanding of the importance of voting and the voting process. The City is rapidly growing, making the position of election official that much more important.

During a General Election in our municipality, over 200 election officials are needed to staff our polling facilities for the day.

You can learn firsthand the voting process by being an election official! This experience also inspires residents to register, vote regularly, and be involved in their community. The City will train and compensate you for your time.


You can sign up to be an election official by:

Visiting Election Official

Emailing Voting and we can email you an application

Stopping in at 300 E Main Street to receive an application

Back to the top

City Engineering

2019 Capital Improvement Plan Streets

City Engineering has finalized the streets that will be under reconstruction or rehabilitation in 2019 under the City's Capital Improvement Plan. Stay tuned for more information to come!

Allen Avenue
Blaser Court
Broadway Drive
Buena Vista Drive
Clara Street
Clements Avenue
Dickson Drive
Elizabeth Court
Elizabeth Lane
Ernest Avenue
Gerald Avenue
N. Pine Street
N. Walker Way
Pine Street
Roland Street
Ruby Lane
S. Thompson Road
Scheuerell Lane
Schuster Road
Steven Street
Surrey Drive
Surrey Drive
Vandenburg Street
Williamson Avenue
Roland to Clements
Steven to End
STH 19 to New Haven
Rickel to Ruby
Columbus to Musket Ridge
Allen to Frederick
Broadway to 300 feet west
Elizabeth Lane to End
Scheuerell to Earnest
Columbus to Elizabeth
Columbus to Clara
Schumann to Pine
W. Main to Buena Vista
N. Pine to Juniper
Jackson to Allen
W. Main to Buena Vista
Main to 600' south
Elizabeth to Woodview
Harvest to Derby
Lori to Blaser + 200 feet west
Plat Line to Katherine
Pilgrim to Cardinal Crest Plat
Jerico to N. Pine
W. Main to Frederick

Storm Drain Mural Application Deadline Approaching

The Madison Area Municipal Stormwater Partnership is teaming up with Dane Arts Mural Arts (DAMA) to add ten storm drain murals to the landscape in 2019. Municipalities, organizations, schools or community groups located in Dane County that are interested in having a storm drain mural painted in their community are encouraged to apply. You can view all Storm Drain Murals, featuring our very own Westside Elementary School. Learn more and apply!

Back to the top

Economic Development

Jimmy will make his prognostication on Saturday, February 2, 2019!

The City of Sun Prairie is celebrating the 71st annual Sun Prairie Groundhog Day Prognostication ceremony on Saturday, February 2, 2019 in Downtown Sun Prairie's Cannery Square. The ceremony will begin at 6:50 a.m. with the Prognostication taking place at sunrise at 7:11 a.m. Young and old alike will gather to welcome Jimmy the Groundhog to Sun Prairie and hear his Groundhog Day prediction! Join us for the fun morning filled with surprises to hear Jimmy's prediction live! Jimmy the Groundhog has an extremely high accuracy rate on his annual predictions, making him an outstanding leader in meteorological circles.

The event will kick off with the National Anthem with the Sun Prairie Police Department Color Guard, declarations from City of Sun Prairie Mayor Paul Esser, and a Gubernatorial Proclamation presented by State Representative Gary Hebl declaring it officially Groundhog Day in the State of Wisconsin. The Prognostication will be translated into Spanish and Hmong. Sign language interpreting services will be provided by Purple Communications Inc.

Radio personalities Bill Baker and Jamison Rabbitt from 103.5 FM, The Sun will emcee this year's event.

Don't miss a special appearance by the Sun Prairie 'Jimmy the Groundhog' Mascot! The 'Jimmy the Groundhog' Mascot will arrive with his Fire Department escort to the ceremony. Be sure to stick around after the ceremony to get your photo taken with the 'Jimmy the Groundhog' Mascot!

FREE pairs of sunglasses will be distributed at the event, courtesy of New Perspective Senior Living.

Do not forget to bring your Groundhog Day notes or Valentine's Day love letters to Prairie Flowers & Gifts – host to the Sun Prairie Post Office station immediately after the ceremony - to receive a commemorative postmark from the post office on your outgoing mail in honor of Groundhog Day! You can bring an already stamped item, or purchase a Groundhog Day Prognostication postcard at the station beginning at 7:00 a.m. This tradition has included a unique cancellation stamp for each year since 1951!

The Sun Prairie Star is hosting a Groundhog Day coloring contest, with entries due February 5. Coloring entries can be picked up and turned in at The Star's office at 804 Liberty Boulevard, Suite 201.

The annual Groundhog Ball, presented by the Sun Prairie Knights of Columbus, will take place on Saturday, February 2 at the The Round Table, located at 1611 N Bristol Street in Sun Prairie. The Ball will be held from 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. The Carl Laake band will be performing at this year's Groundhog Ball. The cost is $7.00 and all proceeds benefit Sun Prairie Youth Baseball and Softball (formerly Sun Prairie Little League). Tickets are available at the door or by contacting James Kueffer in advance, at 608-201-1376. A cash bar will be open to attendees 21 years of age or older. Event attire is casual. This event has been taking place for over thirty years!

The City of Sun Prairie would like to recognize and thank Wilderness Walk Zoo and Recreation Park, just outside of Hayward, Wisconsin. Wilderness Walk Zoo and Recreation Park is the official handler for this year's groundhog.

Businesses and organizations throughout the City of Sun Prairie will be offering many Groundhog Day Specials for the hardy crowd the morning of the Prognostication, as well as before and after the event. Find out more on the Downtown Sun Prairie Facebook event page.

The official Prognostication will be posted on Facebook and at Visit Sun Prairie

Back to the top

Finance Department

At least the first installment of your property tax bill must be paid to the City of Sun Prairie by January 31, 2019. The first installment includes one-half of your property taxes and 100% of any special charges or assessments.

Tax payments paid in the first installment OR in full can be made in person at City Hall at 300 East Main Street on the 2nd floor during Business Hours. You can also mail your payment to:

City of Sun Prairie Treasurer
300 East Main Street
Sun Prairie, WI 53590

Payments can be dropped off after hours at one of our 24 hour Drop Boxes at the following locations:

City Hall Lobby (Main Street Entrance)
Westside Community Services Building (2598 West Main Street)

For questions about Property Taxes, please call (608) 825-1192 or review our FAQ.

Back to the top

Human Resources Department

The City of Sun Prairie is accepting applications for Police Officers at this time. Learn more about the minimum qualifications and the recruitment process.

View and browse all job openings, including full time, part time, seasonal and LTE positions, visit the city website. Please direct all questions and correspondence to Human Resources at (608) 825-1174 to ensure the most prompt response.

Back to the top

Parks & Recreation Department

New Registration System Information

After careful consideration, the Sun Prairie Parks & Recreation Department has decided to switch registration systems, starting with Summer 2019 registrations. If you have registered online with us previously using our current system, Activenet, you will need to create a new account with our new system, RecPro.

From now until March 4, 2019, the Parks & Recreation Department will be migrating Activenet accounts to the new system for users. To request your account be migrated by the Parks & Recreation Department, please fill out the online form.

After March 4th, users will need to create their own account. If you have any questions about the transition, please contact the Parks and Recreation Department at (608) 837-3449

Coming Soon!

Beginning Ballroom Dance

Wednesdays 1/23 - 2/20
7:30 p.m. to 8:15 p.m.
$45 R/$68 NR**
**Fee is per person

Let's get ready to Rumba (and more)! Impress your friends and relatives with your dancing skills at your next social occasion. In these classes you will learn a variety of slow and fast dances that will make you feel confident on any dance floor!

Session 1 will focus on General Ballroom (Waltz, Foxtrot, Rumba, Hustle and Swing)

Snow Day

Friday 1/25 $12 R/$18 NR
Ages 2-3* 9 a.m. to 9:45 a.m
Ages 4-5 10 a.m to 10:35 a.m
*Parent/guardian or caregiver must participate with ages 2 to 3

Join us as we celebrate the snow! Bring your mittens and join in on the snow-themed crafts, activities, songs and more! Dress for the indoors, as all activities will be held inside (no freezing your nose or toes!).

Pampered Chef Tween Cooking Series: After School Snacks

Saturday 1/26
9:30 a.m to 11:30 a.m
$70 R/$90 NR*
*fee includes all cooking supplies and equipment

Budding master chefs will learn, create, cook and taste in this hands-on program. Each session will be customized with a different theme and lesson. Participants will even be taking home a special product to help recreate the recipes at home.


The after school snack attack is real!! We will be making delicious and healthy after school snacks. We will be covering toasting and healthy grab-and-go options.

NOTE: Food allergy alternatives are not available for this program.

Future Leaders of Sun Prairie: Teen Leadership Workshop

Saturday, 2/23
9:00 a.m to 3:00 p.m.
$52 R/$72 NR

This active and engaging leadership program will inspire and motivate teens to become leaders within the community. The program focuses on building character, college/career readiness and community service. Through interactive activities and exercises, teens will gain greater control over their loves and learn how to recognize and harness the power of their own leadership skills. Discussion and learning topics include: Happiness and gratitude, self-confidence, professionalism, communication, commitment and goal-setting.

**For more information or to register for these and other Recreation programs please visit the Recreation Department.

Back to the top

Police Department

Officer G. Nichols Honored by Target

Officer Gary Nichols was honored by leaders of our local Target store with multiple messages of thanks for his hard work on several recent investigations he conducted on their behalf, resulting in criminal charges. For over 22 years, Officer Nichols has served our city with distinction and continuously upholds our department mission: "We will build relationships and solve problems". We value our positive partnerships with area businesses and appreciate this recognition of a job well done.

Officer Nichols with Target Employees holding a frame

Celebrating National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day

Big thanks to the students and staff of the Prairie Phoenix Academy, who went out of their way to make National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day extra special for us!

Photo of PPA staff and students with police officers

Join Us in Welcoming Our New Officer

The Sun Prairie Police Department is proud to welcome Officer Loni Broesch to our patrol staff. Loni has a degree from Upper Iowa University and has worked for the U.S. Attorney's office for the past nine years. She began the Police Academy on Monday, January 14. We are excited to have her on board!

Officer Loni Broesch with Elene Hilby (right) and Chief Pat Anhalt (left).

Back to the top

Public Works

Please Keep Carts Out of the Street During Snow Season

Winter is approaching! This is a reminder that it is a violation of City Ordinance to put collection carts in the street or block the gutter. Proper cart placement is especially critical during the winter months. Keeping the street and gutters free of carts helps us plow close to the curb, helps eliminate damage, helps water run through the gutters as snow melts, and lessens the amount of shoveling necessary by the resident. In the winter you may need to shovel a portion of your terrace to appropriately place your carts. If you place your carts at the end of your driveway, make sure they are far enough back so they are not blocking the curb line or gutter. The collection truck can reach 4 to 5 feet behind the curb to collect your cart. Proper placement is the first step in ensuring your cart is collected.

Snow Emergencies

Snow emergencies are generally declared when 3 or more inches of snow fall. Snow emergencies will be posted on the city website, Facebook, Twitter as well as forwarded to local media outlets. Snow emergencies mean there is no parking on any city streets while the emergency is in effect.

Holiday Tree Collections

The second round of Holiday tree collections starts the week of January 21. Collections will begin Monday at 7:00 a.m., please have your holiday tree out properly by that time to ensure collection. Trees should be free and clear of snow, ornaments, lights, wire, etc and have the cut end facing the street. View full details.

Recycle Center Closed

Recycle Center will be closed in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, January 21.

Back to the top

Sun Prairie Media Center

More city meeting coverage than ever now on KSUN

The Sun Prairie Media Center is happy to announce that effective immediately, it is increasing the number of city meetings that it is covering on its main TV channel KSUN.

KSUN has been providing live coverage of the following meetings for years: Common Council, Committee of the Whole, Finance Committee, Personnel Committee, Plan Commission, Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee, and Public Works Committee.

Starting immediately, the Media Center is adding the following meetings to its broadcast schedule: Business Improvement District, Library Board, Transit Commission, Tourism Commission, Parks Recreation and Forestry Commission, Historical Library and Museum Board, Police and Fire Commission, and Sun Prairie Utilities Commission.

"This expansion of meeting coverage came from discussions we've had with City Administrator Aaron Oppenheimer and Mayor Paul Esser," said Jeff Robbins, director of the Sun Prairie Media Center. "This directive says a lot about the importance to the City of informing its citizens and the priority that City leaders put on transparent government. This also speaks to the importance of having an active community media center that can provide this coverage, and I want to thank the City for its support and staff – especially Marc Borland – for taking on these added assignments."

Whenever possible, the meetings will be presented live on KSUN and streaming. The meetings will also be available to view on demand typically within 24 hours.

KSUN and KIDS-4 are available to view on Spectrum cable channels 983 and 984, on TDS TV on channels 13/1013 and 14/1014, on Roku, Apple TV, and on line.

Baker, Rabbitt to Anchor Groundhog Day Coverage Live Downtown & on 103.5 FM

Picture of Jimmy the Groundhog on Groundhog’s DayThe City of Sun Prairie is celebrating the 71st annual Sun Prairie Groundhog Day Prognostication ceremony on Saturday, February 2, 2019 at Downtown Sun Prairie's Cannery Square. The ceremony will begin at 6:50 a.m. with the Prognostication taking place at sunrise, scheduled to hit at 7:11 a.m.

Bill Baker and Jamison Rabbitt, program hosts on KSUN and 103.5 FM, will MC the coverage both live downtown on 103.5 FM for those unable to make it in person.In addition, the SPMC will have intrepid KIDS-4 reporters on hand to conduct interviews and capture Jimmy's arrival and prognostication.

So, come downtown or tune in to 103.5 FM early on the morning of Saturday, February 2, then watch KIDS-4 and kids4.tv for the video replay! Happy Groundhog's Day!

State of the City on KSUN

Mayor Esser presenting at State of the CitySun Prairie Mayor Paul Esser has had a busy start to 2019 as he has prepared and presented his annual "State of the City" address all over town, from the library, to the Colonial Club, to the Optimists' Club.

During the presentation, the mayor discusses a variety of topics from the July 10 explosion to new hires at the city to reviewing recent changes in housing, transportation, and economic development.

The Sun Prairie Media Center was on hand to record one of the Mayor's "State of the City" presentations and is broadcasting the program several times over the coming weeks. The program can also be streamed on demand.

In addition, on Friday, January 18, the mayor will be interviewed on KSUN's "Talk of the Town" program with Don Hooser and Chris Mertes to look back on a memorable 2018 and to look forward to a busy 2019.

Back to the top

Sun Prairie Public Library

Sun Prairie Public Library Logo

The Library will be closed Monday, January 21 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

The Drive-through book drop will remain open for returns.

Love Trains? We've Got a Model Train Show for All Ages!

The Southern Wisconsin Sandhouse Crew Modular Model Railroad Club will have a model train display at the library for two days and be on hand to answer questions and talk trains all day. 

Saturday, January 19 9:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.
Sunday, January 20 1:30-4:30 p.m
Library Community Room


Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. and Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. Storytime is geared for children ages approx. 2.5 to 5; all ages are welcome to attend! We encourage caregivers to hold children under 3 in their laps while everyone enjoys the fun! Storytimes are 30 minutes long and filled with books, songs, fingerplays, action rhymes, puppets, dramatics, simple crafts, and more – a variety every week! Each week is a new theme.

Storytime starts the week of January 29; Registration recommended, but not required. Please register for the time that you attend most oftenRegistration begins Tuesday, January 22. Registration guarantees that children have nametags waiting for them in Storytime.

Tea with T-Rex!

What happens when you invite T-Rex to a tea party? Let's find out! A special storytime tea party with a unique visitor! All ages are welcome! A parent or other responsible adult must accompany child and participate in the program. No registration required. 

Saturday, January 26 10:30 a.m.
Library Community Room

Monday Night Movie Special Featuring Crazy Rich Asians (Rated PG-13)

Our Monday Night Special is the 2018 blockbuster film based on the book by Kevin Kwan. Refreshments on the house!

Monday, January 28 5:30 p.m. (Run time 120 minutes)
Library Community Room

Black Male Suffrage in Wisconsin

Christy Clark-Pujara, Department of Afro-American Studies at UW-Madison, follows the course of black male suffrage in the founding decades of Wisconsin. 

Wednesday, January 30 6:30 p.m.
Library Community Room

Back to the top