Mayor Paul Soglin

Madison Mayor Paul Soglin is hosting the Mayor's Neighborhood Roundtable at Monona Terrace on Saturday. 

PHOTO BY ABIGAIL BECKER

Mayor Paul Soglin is inviting residents to attend his Neighborhood Roundtable event on Saturday, which will feature workshops and discussions on timely issues including violence and trauma, racial equity and housing.

Soglin and Natalie Erdman, the city’s director of Planning, Community and Economic Development, will open the roundtable, which begins at 9 a.m. at Monona Terrace.

Roughly 300 people have registered for the free event, and registration continues online at go.madison.com/roundtable.

In-person registration at the event begins at 8 a.m.

“I started the roundtable and conference events back in 1996 as a way to help neighborhood leaders and others learn how to access their elected officials, build leadership skills and forge stronger relationships with other like-minded supporters of neighborhoods,” Soglin said in a statement.

“Today, we have over 120 neighborhood groups that represent residents and other stakeholders in their quest to make their city even a better place to live, play and do business,” he said.

After the opening, participants can select from eight workshops that will conclude by noon.

The roundtable will offer three in-depth, 105-minute workshops, and six additional, 45-minute workshops, all featuring specialist presenters, plus break time for socializing.

The in-depth workshops, all running from 10:15 a.m. to noon, are:

  • A city update — violence, trauma, resilience and actions.
  • Using racial equity tools and open data in neighborhood decision-making.
  • Housing trends, challenges and solutions.

The shorter, 45-minute “community conversations,” beginning at 10:15 or 11:15 a.m., are:

  • Making Madison a more walkable, bikeable and transit-oriented community.
  • Building communities through parks.
  • Working effectively with City Council members, city staff and Neighborhood Resource Teams.
  • Be inspired by neighborhood creativity.
  • Art plus social practice: a catalyst for uniting and changing.

The latter workshops are about encouraging the use of local artists to increase engagement in communities, said city arts program administrator Karin Wolf. The workshops will have opportunities for residents to share information that may be turned to poetry, to create bouquets that can be left for others as acts of kindness, and to discuss strategies for their own neighborhoods.

“Wherever you live, this is a wonderful time to network and meet with people who are leaders in their neighborhoods,” city neighborhood planner Jule Stroik said.

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Dean Mosiman covers Madison city government for the Wisconsin State Journal.