Friday, March 27, 2020

While at home GROW A GARDEN

A new website,, aims to connect people to information, help, opportunities to help.

La Crosse County has a very good page of info and redoubt links at

La Crosse Neighborhoods are working on resources for neighbors to help neighbors. Mire coming soon.

CouleeDSA is working through thr FB page, Coulee Region Mutual Aid to connect helpers with those needing help.


Our community has a large number of food-insecure children, families, and individuals in "normal" times. We can only imagine how much more need there will be going forward, not just for food, but for meaningful opportunities to work for the good of others, get healthy exercise, and be socially active.

Please consider GROWING A GARDEN or expanding one if you are already a gardener. Is there a space in your neighborhood, like the middle of a roundabout, that could grow beans, corn, and squash this summer? Might your elderly neighbor have the space and knowledge but not the physical capability to grow a garden? Can you grow carrots, tomatoes, peppers, squash, even corn in containers? (Yes, you can.)

Planting season's here or soon will be depending on your style. Now's the time to find your space, get it ready, find some helpers if needed, and grow. This is especially a great idea if you have kids. Every kid should have a chance to learn how to grow her own food.

There are lots of books, extension websites, experts, and orgs that can help. Try square-foot gardening. Plant things in buckets, milk cartons, cardboard boxes. (Consider starting your corn seeds in toilet paper tubes so you can plant them outside in croups of three when weather gets warm.):

UPDATE: The city will prepare some good size garden plots on city property and city parks to provide more food-growing capacy plus opportunities for community engagement and healthy outdoor exercise. They are looking for volunteers to sign up to help plant and maintain (hoeing, weeding) a garden. If you are interested, please contact your neighborhood association leader. If you are not part of a neighborhood association, contact the city planning department at 608-789-7512.

Then, think about HIRING a helper, maybe securing their services in advance by offering to pay April rent or other critical expenses since payments to individuals will likely not arrive until after April rent is due.

Finally, if you live in the area bounded by Ward Ave, South Ave/MC Rd, Broadview, and the railroad tracks on the south side of La Crosse and you need pre-ordered groceries or medicine picked up and delivered because you have a health or transportation issue and can't make it yourself, please call 608-315-2693. Text or leave a clear voice message with your name and phone number. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Bad Bill Bails Bigs (again)/Gundersen Requests Assistance


Republicans and Democrats in the Senate have reached a tentative agreement on a third COVID-19 response package. The final package is a dramatic improvement from the original Republican bill, which was essentially a giant no-strings-attached corporate giveaway without any real support to workers and families affected by this crisis. 
Senate Democrats deserve a lot of credit for sticking together to make improvements to the bill, such as dramatically expanding unemployment insurance, and providing money to support our already-strained health care system. However, the bill still falls short of what people need in this moment of crisis, and the House should fight to improve it.
Your representative needs to hear from you so that they work to improve the third coronavirus response bill before voting on it. Specifically, you should ask your member of the House to:
  • Increase election security and access to voting, including financial support for states to implement vote by mail before November,
  • Add guardrails for the hundreds of billions of dollars in corporate bailouts in the bill (e.g. requiring that companies that get bailouts retain ALL of their employees and can’t waste money on executive bonuses or stock buybacks)
  • Provide universal paid sick leavenot just for some people — everyone, 
  • Improve the cash assistance provisions of the bill by making the payments recurring and available to all people, including immigrants, and
  • Support patients and health care workers by expanding federal Medicaid funding, ending surprise billing, and ensuring frontline workers have the protections they need to stay safe

More on making masks here.


Gundersen Health System is accepting donations for new and unused protection supplies. Because of the spread of COVID-19, health officials have warned that staff in busy hospitals may see a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). Gundersen says it has adequate amounts of PPE, but the health system wants to prepare for a potential surge in patients.

Items requested include:

  • Face shields
  • Digital thermometers
  • Eye protection such as safety glasses and goggles
  • Hand sanitizer that is at least 60 percent alcohol
  • Sanitizing wipes
  • Masks including both N95 and surgical masks (any level) *
  • Gloves
  • Gowns

To donate any of the above and help keep staff, patients and community as safe as possible, please contact Gundersen Medical Foundation at (608) 775-6600 or

*Note: Homemade masks are being accepted if they meet specific criteria. For directions and a pattern, please contact Gundersen Medical Foundation at (608) 775-6600 or

Mask specifications can be found here (scroll down for how-to video).

To align needs and supply of PPE, PLEASE call Gundersen Medical Foundation first. This will allow staff to track the number of masks being made and who is making them. 

Monetary donations for purchasing equipment and supporting medical research—such as the COVID-19 test our Microbiology Research Lab recently developed—also are being accepted here.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Call, txt, message, tweet today

From Indivisible:

Indivisible has the tools to connect you with our elected officials now to ensure emergency relief targets people not corporations.

FiveCalls has the tools to contact electeds about how we work through this health, social, and economic crisis. Make five calls today, tomorrow, and every day. has the tools for you to REGISTER, UPDATE YOUR VOTER REGISTRATION, and REQUEST AN ABSENTEE BALLOT. 

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Sunday night Bernie Coronavirus Livestream

Tonight at 7pm EST will be hosting a special livestream conversation on the coronavirus with & &
. Expect practical, essential solutions, hope, encouragement, and more.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Coulee Region COVID19 Mutual Aid

In the midst of the pandemic, it is heartening to see community members stepping up to help those who are most affected by COVID19. With so many people in the area already struggling to make ends meet, losing wages has a disastrous effect on many people. This need has spurred action by local groups and individuals, from United Way and La Crosse Community Foundation creating the La Crosse Area Emergency Response Fund to the Holy Trinity-Longfellow neighborhood group organizing a volunteer corp as well as numerous individual community members offering to help (donate diapers, pick up groceries, etc.) on social media.

In that spirit, a few community members have created a library of free resources to help those in need find the necessary support. You can find this mutual aid library at

If you are able to donate, free of charge, any time, services, goods, or money to those who might need it, please enter your information in the document OR email and we will enter it for you!  

If you or someone you know is need of anything, check the mutual aid library for possible resources. If what you need isn't there, please don't hesitate to email or make a post on the Coulee Region COVID 19 Mutual Aid Facebook page.   

If there are any concerns or suggestions for how to improve this document, or you need help navigating it, let us know!  

Friday, March 20, 2020

Online voter registration is back!

If you're not yet registered or if you need to update your registration, do it now at

Saturday: WI Grassroots Fest ONLINE


Please Register At


Nina Turner
She is a motivational speaker, cable news commentator and defining political icon. She is a national co-chair of the Bernie Sanders 2020 presidential campaign, a former state senator from Ohio and former professor of African American history. Turner is also a founding member of the Bernie Sanders Institute, an entity dedicated to transforming American democracy through research, education and outreach.



9:30 AM

On March 21st Visit
for More Information

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Yard Signs/Voting

The April 7 spring election has NOT been postponed as of today. As you know, there is an important election for the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Get and display a Judge Jill Karofsky Yard Sign. Complete the yard sign order form at

Signs will be delivered between March 20 and March 24.
If you haven't yet requested your ABSENTEE BALLOT for the April 7 election, please DO IT NOW!! Visit and click on VOTE ABSENTEE. You may need to upload a copy of your PROOF OF RESIDENCE when you request the ballot. 

If you need to register or update your voter registration (new address, new name), you must go to the clerk's office. Starting on Monday, March 23, you may vote absentee in person at the clerk's office. Some other places have already started "early" voting in clerks' offices. Contact your municipal clerk for info.

The Democratic Party of Wisconsin and the Democratic National Committee (which insisted that residents of IL, FL, and AZ go and vote even though health officials are pleading with people to stay home and is threatening states that postpone their primaries with loss of delegates) have sued the Wisconsin Elections Commission to expand the ability of state residents to vote online by waiving voter ID and residence proof requirements, pushing back the deadline for online registration (it ended yesterday), and expanding the time for voters to get and return ballots. 
Don't wait. Request your ballot now. When it comes, you will need to have a witness sign your envelope. Then mail it back quickly - by March 31 if possible. Read more about voting absentee here

The City of Madison Municipal Clerk notes these major reasons absentee ballots are rejected: Don't let this happen to you!
  • Voter has not signed absentee certificate envelope.
  • Voter has not had a witness sign the absentee certificate envelope
  • Witness did not write address on absentee certificate envelope (street number, street name, municipality)
  • Ballot has not been received by Election Day.
  • Voter has not registered to vote at their current address.
  • Voter has not sealed the absentee certificate envelope.
  • Voter dies before Election Day.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Tonight! Working Families Party conference call

From Working Families Party

The decisions our government will make in the next few days will impact our country for years.In this moment of crisis, it's crucial that the progressive movement comes together to make our voices heard to protect our communities & families.

That’s why I’m inviting you to join an organizing phone call tonight with Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Rep. Pramila Jayapal, the Working Families Party, and myself, Ady Barkan.

RSVP to join the call »
Together, we will discuss the federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic and learn about the ways we can all help.We will also hear an update from Bonnie Castillo, the Executive Director of National Nurses United (the largest union of nurses in the country), on how healthcare providers are responding to the pandemic. 

It’s going to take a historic movement of people working together to demand serious action from our government.

When: Wednesday, March 18th at 9:00 PM EST What: We will hear from different leaders and discuss the federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic. How to join the call: Click below to RSVP & receive details on how to join the phone call tonight
It’s critical we stick together during these challenging times.
We’re counting on our supporters to show up to the phone call tonight and show our leaders that there are thousands of Americans across the country who are ready to fight for action.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020


As a response to the Covid19 virus, the Wisconsin Election Commission is urging voters  to vote absentee in the upcoming April 7 Spring Election and Presidential Primary. Online voter registration and requests for an absentee ballot can be accomplished at

Wednesday, March 18, is the last day for online voter registration. But, you can register in the clerk's office if you do in person absentee voting. Be sure to take or have online access to a document that verifies your current address (see list here.)

Thursday, April 2, is the deadline for requesting an absentee ballot BUT it would be better to request your ballot as soon as possible to make sure there's time for the mail. You can request a mailed ballot at You may need to upload a copy of your voter ID (a WI driver's license,or other approved document). 

Absentee in person voting will be available beginning March 23 in La Crosse (and is already happening in Onalaska). Going to vote before election day will help avoid crowds. Learn more about absentee in person voting from your clerk.

Now that the coronavirus threat is making clear that the policies Bernie Sanders has been fighting for all his life are indeed necessary and affordable, people seem to be turning to ...  the guy who's fought his whole life *against* them, though if you watched the March 15 debate, you'd never know that because there was a lot of Biden pants-on-fire going on. But, you know, low information voters who just want things to go "back to normal." This is exactly why I don't like slasher movies. You can yell, "Don't go there!" as much as you like, but the clueless go there anyway. We still get a vote for the right person at least. And the Bern app.

This election is very important for the Wisconsin Supreme Court - Judge Jill Karofsky vs. the Scott Walker appointee. There is also a state referendum question on which the ACLU and others are urging a NO vote. Read more here.
At first glance, Marsy’s Law seems innocuous enough. The ACLU of Wisconsin is a strong supporter of victims’ rights, and supporters of Marsy’s Law say the Amendment is necessary to ensure equal rights for the victims of crime. 
But in reality, Marsy’s Law fails to meaningfully improve upon existing protections for victims while creating a host of new problems and simultaneously weakening the rights of the accused.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

How to be a delegate webinar and training

UPDATE: in-person trainings are canceled. All delegate selection training will be done via webinar. Please RSVP at this link to receive webinar information.

Party membership is not required though it may be an advantage at the final stage of the selection process.
"How to be a National Convention Delegate" training is already scheduled as a webinar on March 18 at 6 p.m. Please RSVP below and 48 hours before the training, you will receive the webinar link. Webinar details will be sent to RSVP'd guests 24 hours in advance RSVP HERE:

It takes 1,991 delegates to win the nomination. So far, fewer than half the states have voted. Right now, there is a 150 delegate difference between the top two candidates. In addition to the presidential candidates there are many "down ballot" elections to be decided in the spring elections. In Wisconsin, it's the Wisconsin Supreme Court, where a ten year term is at stake = the Scott Walker appointed incumbent or Jill Karofsky. The primary continues. 



Sunday, March 08, 2020

Clean Energy Toolkit - March 10

La Crosse, WI – As part of its statewide launch, the Coulee Region Sierra Club, La Crosse Mayor Tim Kabat, and Citizen Action of Wisconsin will be addressing members of the media and the public on Tuesday, March 10, at 12:30 p.m. at La Crosse City Hall Lobby, to announce the release of the “Wisconsin Clean Energy Toolkit: Developing a Clean Energy Plan for Your Community.”
Mayor Kabat will detail the progress the city of La Crosse is already making to meet its clean energy goals.  Amy Dummer of Citizen Action of Wisconsin will explain opportunities for private citizens and businesses to convert to clean energy. 
As concern over climate change and its impacts deepens, local communities across Wisconsin are eager to develop and implement clean energy plans. Often, they struggle with how to begin from a technical perspective and how to engage their communities.
A collaboration between Wisconsin Conservation Voters, Sierra Club, and RENEW Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Clean Energy Toolkit is a comprehensive guide to energy policy options in Wisconsin. The toolkit is a resource designed to help guide communities of varying sizes and with differing resources as they consider, craft, and implement clean energy policies.
Towns, villages, cities, and counties in Wisconsin are building the renewable energy economy and leading the way in confronting climate change. The Wisconsin Clean Energy Toolkit recognizes the leadership in Wisconsin communities and the opportunities to expand these efforts across the state.
The toolkit’s release on March 10 will include events in Madison, Milwaukee, Green Bay, Eau Claire, La Crosse, Racine, Waukesha, and Menomonie.

Thursday, March 05, 2020

Bernie events

UPDATE: All in-person events are CANCELED.

UPDATE: Sunday canvassing is off, BUT Saturday canvassing is ON. Hosted by Coulee DSA: 1 to 7 p.m. (Come when you can, leave when you must.)

On Sunday, March 8 (it's gonna be a beautiful day) sign up to knock doors in La Crosse between noon and 3 p.m. OR phone bank between noon and 5 p.m. at 1610 Madison.

On Thursday, March 12, head on down to the Bernie Barnstorm from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the Southside Neighborhood Center, 1300 S. 6th St. Bernie news and Bernie swag will be available.

We've heard there's a Bernie GOTV concert and party being planned for Saturday, April 4 in downtown La Crosse. More news as we get it.

Wednesday, March 04, 2020

3/28: Wis Assn of Rail Passengers

A second passenger rail line would allow more people better relatively clean travel options.

Registration for the WisARP Spring Meeting in La Crosse on March 28th is open. Register today! You can register online at

You can register by mail using the attached form.

If you live in the La Crosse area and you can't make it for the whole meeting, just come when you can at no charge. Just let me know that you will be coming. We are making the push to get the second Chicago-Twin Cities train.

Mark Weitenbeck

Union of Concerned Scientists, "Getting There Greener."

4/25: Celebrate Diversity & Resist Racism

From Greater La Crosse Area Diversity Council:

The UWL Anti-Islamophobia Working Group, Weigent-Hogan Neighborhood Association, La Crosse Interfaith Shoulder-to-Shoulder Network, and the La Crosse Public Library invite you to:

All Are Welcome: Celebrating Community Diversity and Resisting Racism
Saturday, April 25, 2020,3 p.m.Weigent Park playground (SE corner of 15th St. & Cass Ave., La Crosse)

Join community leaders, neighbors, and city officials at Weigent Park as we celebrate the official placement of “All Are Welcome” signs at all La Crosse public parks. City leaders will make brief remarks to be followed by children’s activities. Please bring your family!
Recently, residents of La Crosse have encountered elevated levels of racism and xenophobia, targeting people of color, in general, and immigrants and Muslims, in particular. In one instance, a man shouted "No Muslims allowed!" at two women of South Asian descent and their young children, while they were at the Weigent Park playground. (The story is captured in this news segment.) In response, La Crosse Parks & Rec. created new "All are Welcome" signs for all of La Crosse's public parks.

An inaugural public event is planned for these signs at Weigent Park on Saturday, April 25th at 3pm with the Mayor and others, denouncing such acts and supporting our diverse neighbors. This is part of a broader community-wide visible initiative to foster healthier multicultural communities.

We hope you can join us and help spread the word!

Greater La Crosse Area Diversity Council

Tuesday, March 03, 2020

Thursday - Women Opposed to Trump Rally

From Wis Dems:

Women of the La Crosse County Democratic Party - Your Assistance and Knowledge is Needed!

Description : On Thursday, Vice President Mike Pence, on behalf of President Trump, will hold a Women for Trump event. The administration has attacked women's rights at every turn, and now they are coming to Wisconsin to sell a fiction about Trump's numerous broken promises. From trying to go back to the old days where women could be charged more for health care insurance because of their gender, to stripping funding for women-oriented health clinics, Trump has been attacking women's rights in Wisconsin and across the country. 

Join Wisconsin women who will speak out and tell the truth about how Trump's policies and broken promises have negatively impacted them and their communities.
DPW has set up a counter event.
When: Thursday, March 5
Time: 10:30 a.m.
Where: Cameron Park

Message guidance for signs:
Trump Broke His Promises to Women
Trump Is Bad for Our Health Care
Trump Doesn't Support Women's Rights
We Can't Afford 4 More Years of Trump
Please contact Philip Shulman or the LCDP Chair (information below) if you are a woman who wishes to speak.
Philip Shulman
Director of Trump Rapid Response
Democratic Party of Wisconsin

Monday, March 02, 2020

Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity La Crosse Area is looking for low-income individuals and families to partner with us to achieve safe and stable homeownership!

All interested applicants must:

  • Complete a Homeowner Application,
  • Submit all other requested documents found in the Homeowner Application Checklist and,
  • Anyone over the age of 18 must sign a Consent Form for a Criminal Background Check.
Homeowner Application, supporting documents and signed consent criminal background checks forms are due by 5:00 pm on Friday, March 20.

Applications and documents can be returned by:

  • Mail:
    Habitat for Humanity La Crosse Area
    3181 Berlin Dr
    La Crosse, WI 54601
  • Fax: 888-823-9830 
  • Or can be dropped off to the Habitat ReStore Wednesday-Friday from 10 am to 5 pm.
Please call 608-785-2373 ext 104 with any questions.

Sunday, March 01, 2020

Thank you!

Thanks to all who tabled at and attended yesterday's Progresstival. Thank you to Jule's for coffee donation and to those who brought and donated food. Thanks to The Concordia for the hospitality. Thank you WKBT for covering our event.

Thank you to Elizabeth Ward, Executive Director, John Muir Chapter, Sierra Club. While she didn't address the whole group, she was able to talk with many of us about recent victories and upcoming events.

If you attended the Progresstival, please take a couple of minutes to give some feedback so any future events can be better and more useful in connecting and strengthening our progressive community..