Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Sun Prairie and DeForest Team Up to Host the Dane County Manufacturing & Technology Network (City of Sun Prairie Office of Economic Development)

The City of Sun Prairie and the Village of DeForest have joined forces to create the Dane County Manufacturing and Technology Network. This effort will consist of a monthly networking meeting featuring a speaker on a topic of interest to our manufacturing employers in the region. There is no cost to attend and participate, but an RSVP is generally required.

The staff from each community that is coordinating this effort is Neil Stechschulte, Economic Develoment Coordinator from the City of Sun Prairie, and Greg Frahm, Director of Economic Development and Planning for the Village of DeForest.

"Our communities here on the east side of Dane County certainly have a lot in common in terms of target employment sectors, and it just made sense to work together on this. I'm excited to be coordinating this with Greg, and look forward to growing this initiative over the next year. Our job is to make sure this provides some real value to our participating employers here in our region" said Stechschulte. "We'll be looking for other communities to join in once we get our core group of participants really established."

On Thursday June 24th, a group of about 20 employers from Sun Prairie, DeForest and Madison gathered in DeForest to hear about a variety of financing and funding options for economic development projects. Our presenters were Kate Crowley and Lisa Van Lieshout from Baker Tilly in Madison. Kate and Lisa covered a variety of programs including low-interest financing programs, tax credits and benefits, employee training assistance, and energy efficiency programs. Any persons interested in learning more about the presentation can contact either Kate or Lisa directly at:

Kate Crowley
(608) 240-6718

Lisa Van Lieshout
(608) 240-2671

The next meeting is likely to be scheduled for late July and will be in Sun Prairie, and will be announced after the 4th of July holiday.

Additional questions regarding the Dane County Manufacturing and Technology Network can be addressed to either Neil or Greg at:

Neil Stechschulte
(608) 825-0894

Greg Frahm
(608) 846-6751

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Sun Prairie's Wind Power Happy Hour Continues to Grow (City of Sun Prairie Office of Economic Development)

Photo: Steve Sletten from PBS&J and Jerry Murphy from the New North demonstrate a proven networking technique at the June Wind Power Happy Hour.

The Wind Power Happy Hour network of companies and partners continues to grow. The City has aggressively marketed the event to regional economic development partners around the State of Wisconsin, and has agreed to rotate the event to the Fox Cities and Milwaukee in addition to the Madison area (Thrive). This is being done in conjunction with the Wisconsin Wind Works Alliance. The June meeting was held in Wrightstown, Wisconsin at the Royal St. Patrick's Golf Course clubhouse, and featured guest presentations from Alliant Energy and Oshkosh based Renewegy. It is currently anticipated that the July meeting will be held in the Milwaukee area, with speakers and location yet to be announced.

In addition, the City of Sun Prairie Office of Economic Development agreed to "co-sponsor" the Wind Energy Speaking Series at the University of Wisconsin School of Business. This series of presentations scheduled for Fridays over the next several weeks in Room 5120 of Grainger Hall at the UW-Madison campus will feature several private sector companies involved in the wind industry from either a wind farm development standpoint or from that of a supplier in the wind industry supply chain. Our last presenter was Mr. Paul Schechter from Horizon Wind, who talked about his company's involvement in the development of wind farms and how they assess specific areas for wind turbine installation. Several additional speakers are scheduled for the month of July.

According to Neil Stechschulte, Economic Development Coordinator for the City of Sun Prairie, "In a little over a year, this initiative has been tremendously successful in developing a network for a sector that is obviously ready to grow. Our job is to continue to provide value to our participants, and eventually leverage our relationships with these companies to get them to build or expand here. There is still plenty of work to do before something like this can happen. We are are doing whatever we can to better position ourselves to be of assistance to interested employers in the wind industry supply chain." The event mailing list now exceeds 460 people. A blog with relevant news stories that averages 400 visits per month has also been created:

We also maintain a presence on, to allow for individuals interested in the wind industry further opportunity to network and to share news.

Anyone interested in more information on the Wind Power Happy Hour, the Wind Energy Speaker Series, or the Wisconsin Wind Works Alliance can contact Neil Stechschulte at (608) 825-0894 or nstechschulte[at] for more information.

June 23rd Joint Chamber-City Networking Breakfast for Sun Prairie Business Park a Success

Special thanks to all the companies who attended our first jointly sponsored networking breakfast the morning of June 23rd. It is hoped that this will become a regular event for our business park employers.

The Sun Prairie Chamber of Commerce helped organize the event, and the City of Sun Prairie provided the breakfast. Our speaker was Erin Roth from the Wisconsin Petroleum Council who talked about oil supplies and explained some of the factors that impact the cost of gasoline here in Wisconsin. Finally, special thanks to Wisconsin Distributors for allowing us to use their meeting room at their facility in the Sun Prairie Business Park. The Chamber is currently surveying participants to determine what level of interest there is in additional meetings, what the best time to hold them would be, and what topics companies would like to discuss. Watch for announcements on future meetings.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

St. Mary's Sun Prairie Emergency Center serves 10,000th patient (Sun Prairie Star)

Today, the St. Mary’s Sun Prairie Emergency Center has cared for its 10,000th patient, well before its one year anniversary of opening, and well ahead of what was expected.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Sun Prairie Utilities Open House Saturday June 5th 11am to 4pm Commemorates 100 Years of Service

In recognition of 100 years of service, Sun Prairie Utilities will host an open house at the Utility office at 125 W. Main Street on Saturday, June 5th from 11 am to 4 pm.

Come for the free food, stay for the family fun! For the kids, we have bucket truck rides, a bounce house, a clown and a coloring contest.

In addition, the entire family can view demonstrations on water conservation, electric conservation and pole climbing.

Customers of Sun Prairie Utilities who attend are eligible for a 100-prize raffle.

Click here to read a great editorial from the Sun Prairie Star on the role of Sun Prairie Utiliities has had on economic development in Sun Prairie..

Click here for a copy of the event flyer.