The response from Co-op Owners living in the Willy West area has been overwhelming and, surprisingly, non-owners have been equally as supportive, even offering to join now in preparation for the store’s planned opening in October 2010. We have already contacted several community centers in the area and we are looking forward to offering the same sponsorship and support opportunities that we regularly provide on Madison’s near eastside.

We have received many good questions, and we appreciate the opportunity to share more information about the project. The Communications department is managing the posting of updated information and scheduling of events. Cooperative Services will also be scheduling information and education outreach for westside businesses; if you are interested in scheduling one of these events for your business, please give Lynn a call at at 608-237-1217.
We have added, and will continue to add, more information to the website, including:

  • A project update blog from our project manager
  • The Second Site Advisory Committee (SSAC) recommendation (June 2009)
  • A floor plan of the store when all is finalized
  • Information about upcoming Willy West-related events

Additional information will be posted in the Owner Resources Area inside the entrance of the current store to keep Owners up-to-date on progress of the store’s opening.

Bond Pledge Drive
The Bond Pledge Drive was already off to a good start in early March; the actual kick-off for Bond sales began the day the lease was signed by both the Willy Street Co-op Board President George Hofheimer and Aaron Anding, representing Anding Realty Inc., owners of the property. We are expecting to raise $600,000 by the end of May, 60 days after lease signing.

Information is posted on our website (www.willystreet.coop) and instore. For the current total of Bonds sold, see the colorful Pitchfork Scale in the store and on our website.

To ask questions, request materials, or purchase a Bond, email bonds@willystreet.coop or call Director of Cooperative Services Lynn Olson at 608-237-1217.

It is my pleasure to thank the many people who have worked so hard over the last three years to bring us to this point. To our staff, from identifying cost-saving efficiencies to toiling over pre-planning, their contributions have been essential to this project. The SSAC (Second Site Advisory Committee) assistance—poring over 30 potential sites, guided by a long list of requirements and considerations shaped by Owner input—was priceless.
And to the Board, past and present, who maintained their vision through thick and thin, bravely pushing forward and supporting our mission and directives, my sincere thanks to one and all.

Zero Green Waste
Continuously looking for ways to deepen our shade of green, right now I consider us to be at the “asparagus” level. Green waste from the production facility will be transported to Community GroundWorks at Troy Gardens on Madison’s northside for composting in their vermiculture project beginning in May.

Annual Meeting and Party
Lace up your dancing shoes and save the date for the Annual Meeting and Party, July 8th, at the site of La Fete de Marquette!

Taste of Willy Street
GWABA’s (Greater Williamson Area Business Association) annual fundraiser—Taste of Willy Street—is an event not to miss this year! Scheduled the same day as the Eastside Farmers’ Market OPENING day at the new location at Wil-Mar Neighborhood Center, 953 Jenifer Street; May 11th, 2010... should be an exciting day!