Madison Wisconsin

Old Jul 20th, 2006, 10:12 AM
  #21  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Absolutely - It is UW (although some people will get that confused with U. of Washington). Your post makes me want to return badly. I haven't been back since not long after graduation (over 10 years ago). I lived there for over 7 years and truly loved it. I did get to see the Badgers beat my other team (UNC) in football last year. My family of four wore clothing from both schools (my wife also went to both). The many visiting UW fans loved it; the Heels fans thought we were crazy!!! Have fun.
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 06:56 PM
  #22  
 
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just jumping in - i absolutely agree that for a one-night in Madison the Dane and the Terrace are the places to be. More seriously, I'm an '01 alum with majors in journalism and poli. sci (I worked for the Badger-Herald, the indpt. student newspaper while in school). Happy to help if I can - e-mail me at [email protected] (but please post here letting me know if you e-mail, it's an account I don't check that often since this is a public board). good luck!
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 07:04 PM
  #23  
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Thank you so much, alyssabc! What a generous offer!

You can expect to hear from me. But I need to talk to my son first (and, of course, being a teenage boy, he's out at the moment!) to see what questions he would have. I know I have some!
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 07:34 PM
  #24  
 
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no problem!
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Old Jul 21st, 2006, 08:17 AM
  #25  
 
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A friend's son just graduated this spring and was hired by Senator Russ Feingold (D) WI as one of his press aides. I think that speaks highly of the school. I am a Feingold fan.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2006, 08:42 PM
  #26  
 
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Where are you staying Caph52?

There is a restaurant we had fun at near the University called Lombardinos.
http://www.lombardinos.com/index.html
Even though it is Italian, I would imagione you can get a beer - This IS Wisconsin!

It is amazing how many interesting and great restaurants Madison has, but I hardly ever eat out.I think I might want to try the Old Fashioned myself.

I know you will be very busy, but if you get up early Saturday morning try to get up State Street to the Capital Square and check out the farmers market. It is a sight to behold. Walk through the Capital building and see how lovely it is.

BTW - though I am a cheesehead born and bred, we were thansferred back here after "doing time" in Illinois, Tinley Park to be specific.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2006, 09:07 PM
  #27  
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Thanks, Happy! I'm hoping we'll have a chance to check out the Farmer's Market.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2006, 09:20 PM
  #28  
TheWeasel
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Lombardino's is a decent restaurant, but it's pretty far away from the main campus and all the action. I lived almost next to it, and believe me, it's quite a long walk from there to anywhere. I don't think it'd be a good place to give your son a feel for what UW's all about.

I'd stick with somewhere in the State Street area. That's where you're most likely to find students in town for the summer (or the Regent Street area). For something interesting that nobody's suggested yet, go to Nitty Gritty's. It's the place everyone goes on their birthday, so your son will most certainly get familiar with it if he decides to attend UW. The food is pretty basic, but it's the atmosphere that's interesting.

http://tinyurl.com/qksdu

Otherwise, you really can't go wrong with the Great Dane or Essen Haus. Just make sure you walk around on State Street, and maybe pop into a few bars (State Street Brats for sure). After all, one cannot go to school at Madison without spending a fair amount of time in bars.
 
Old Jul 22nd, 2006, 09:37 PM
  #29  
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Thanks, Weasel.

"After all, one cannot go to school at Madison without spending a fair amount of time in bars." Remember, I'm the mother. I don't need to hear these things. When he's three hours away, I can pretend he's in his dorm room studying!
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 11:04 AM
  #30  
 
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We've been living in Madison for 3 years now and I'm repeating a bit of what others have said, but will add a bit too.

PLEASE NOTE: The Memorial Union Terrace is technically for members only. Students, staff, alumni, guests, etc. There are some signs posted to this effect and to buy beer and/or food at the lake front stand they will likely ask for an id that attests to being a member.
In my experience, "membership" is only checked at the lake front brat stand and indoor beer [Rathskellar]. You can still buy ice cream and food at the other Mem. Union locations and hang out on the terrace all you want. I tell you this not to scare you away, please do visit there--its fantastic. But, plan ahead, either just go for dessert, plan to eat from an indoor food stand (they're so-so on quality) or maybe ask someone else to gopher for you if you're wanting beer or a brat dinner there.

Other folks have mentioned some of the resaurants in this cluster but http://www.foodfightinc.com/ is a collection of indy restaurants scattered throughout the area. You can find one on the Web site that best suits your needs. Monty's Blue Plate Diner is our fave. Beer available, and the desserts, yum.

The Great Dane has good beer, but I'm not a big fan of their food. Ditto on Mickey's Dairy Bar as a favored breakfast location (near Camp Randal--the football staduim, cash only, big portions).
On State St., Takara is our favorite japanese restaurant, Baraka has Ethiopian and we also like Tutto Pasta for Italian. State St. Brats has local delicacies like beer and fried cheese curds, and of course brats.

I hope you all have a great time. Madison is a fun place to be.
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 03:24 PM
  #31  
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Mancala, thanks very much for a very informative post!
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Old Jul 25th, 2006, 12:06 PM
  #32  
 
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I'd just like to add a bit more info to what mancala wrote.

I worked in the Rathskeller when the I.D. check was instituted (oh, about 25 years ago or so). It was originally started because that area attracted quite a few street people at the time because it was an easy place to just hang out all day. Many of these people would often drink too much (beer is pretty inexpensive there) and would cause all kinds of trouble for patrons and employees. Believe me, it got scary more than once and I was pretty accustomed to the weirdness.

Anyway, we started checking for university affiliation as a way to control the problem of drunken non-members. For people legitimately visiting the university, we would issue guest passes at the bar. You would need to show some sort of identification (typically a driver's license) and state what your business was on campus. We often got parents visiting campus with their children as you are doing. This is a perfectly acceptable reason to be using the Union.

Things may have changed since then but I don't think you'll have any problem getting a guest pass.
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Old Jul 27th, 2006, 04:27 PM
  #33  
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Thanks, janeygirl. That's good to know.
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Old Jul 27th, 2006, 05:58 PM
  #34  
 
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I'm a Badger, also an '01 alum. I majored in English with a business certificate. Great all-around school. Really, you couldn't go with a better choice. Serious academics and great area to learn more about being a well-rounded, thoughtful, creative, playful person. The other poster was right about the town being dead-serious about sports and politics, though I managed to never go to a UW sporting event. There's more to life there than football- you can row, learn to sail, learn astronomy with visits to the observatory (I saw Saturn!!!!) and so, so much more. Amazing place.

I'd suggest just walking up State Street at 8pm and seeing what restaurant strikes your fancy. I was fond of this Turkish restaurant near the start of State street near the campus. Forget what all these places were called! There was a great Indian place near the capital, but that may have been demolished b/c of the performing arts center that was rennovated up there. There were also two Himalayan/ Nepalese places I'll never forget. Modest places, but WONDERFUL food.

Enjoy, and savor your weekend there.

email if you want specific questions answered- my husband grew up in Madison and I spent 2 years of college there.

Lynne: [email protected]
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Old Jul 27th, 2006, 07:47 PM
  #35  
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Thanks so much for your suggestions, Lynn.

If we have questions when we get back, I just might take you up on your very kind offer!
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Old Jul 27th, 2006, 08:22 PM
  #36  
 
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The UW campus area got hit with flash floods today. The water has receded but some apartments got hit pretty hard so you may find piles of saturated belongings along the curb. Shouldn't hinder your plans. Do make a point of going to the Memorial Union Terrace! No campus tour would be complete without it.
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Old Jul 27th, 2006, 08:33 PM
  #37  
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Thanks for the heads up, mdwest! The weather is supposed to be brutal here in Chicagoland this weekend. Can we expect the same there?
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Old Jul 27th, 2006, 08:55 PM
  #38  
 
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Yup. Hot and humid.
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Old Jul 30th, 2006, 02:46 PM
  #39  
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Just wanted to thank all of you once again. And give a brief report on our trip to Madison.

First of all, neither the town nor the school disappointed! We looked at five schools last week. He liked some of the others much better than he'd expected. But UW Madison is definitely his first choice! I think he's a little nervous about the size. But it offers so much of what he wants from a school.

As for the rest of the details...We stayed at the Baymont Inn and Suites. While it was a little farther out than we would've liked, we were very happy with it. By far the best of the three places we stayed last week. The room was comfy and we loved the pool area. We were also quite happy with the price, $72 for the three of us. My only complaints were pretty minor. 1)The room could have been cooler but it was a very hot weekend. 2) I had a minor run-in with the "breakfast lady" because my son put mini-bagels in the toaster! Not smart, I know! But they really don't taste good if they're not toasted. They should either have a toaster oven or no mini-bagels!

Friday evening we drove in and, after a quick drive through the campus, were lucky enough to find a parking spot on a street fairly close to the capitol. As we walked up and down State Street, I realized I'd forgotten to get addresses for some of the restaurants that had been recommended!

We did eventually find the Old Fashioned. Unfortunately, there was a 45 minute wait. So we decided to try The Great Dane. There was a 30 minute wait there. It was hot, we were tired and both places were on the noisy side, so we decided we just weren't up for a wait. We walked across the street from Great Dane and ate at a place called Madison's. While it wasn't anything spectacular, it filled the bill that night! It wasn't crowded (although it was quite a bit busier when we left than when we got there) and the food, service and beer were all good! We'd had fairly heavy German lunches in Milwaukee. So we just split an appetizer and each ordered a sandwich.

After breakfast and check-out Saturday morning, we headed in and parked at a parking garage just off of State Street. We walked up and checked out the Farmer's Market. It's amazing! But it was so hot and crowded! So we got a bag of cheese curds and headed back down State Street to check out some of the shops. (The cheese curds were great, BTW. They squeaked quite loudly! I've heard that means they were fresh!)

We had our 100 minute campus tour at noon, when the heat index was 100 degrees! I'm so glad we took it. It was so informative! But I'd never want to do it again. At least not when it's that hot! By the time is was over, I was exhausted and felt as though I could drink all of Lake Mendota!

Before heading out of town, we walked back over to State Street to hit a couple more stores and find some place for lunch. We wound up at Husnu's (I think. I'm having a little trouble reading the receipt!), a Turkish restaurant. We really enjoyed it! By the time we ate it was around 2:30. So it wasn't crowded. The atmosphere was very serene, the service was great and so was the food. And the lunch specials were quite reasonably priced.

All in all, we really enjoyed our mini-trip to Madison. And there's still so much there we'd like to see!

Guess this wasn't such a "brief report" after all. Sorry about that!

alyssabc, you will definitely be hearing from me! We have questions but need some time to recover from this past week to get our thoughts together a bit. I'll post back on here to let you know when I've e-mailed you. Thanks again!



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Old Jul 30th, 2006, 03:38 PM
  #40  
 
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Husnus (or whatever!) -- YES! That was the place. Great food.

Glad you had a wonderful time and I'm thrilled that your son has given it first-choice ranking. It IS a great school.

Don't worry too much about the size. There are lots of niches to join and every student finds his or hers at Madison.
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