The State capital of Wisconsin, Madison is the second largest city after Milwaukee with a population of more than 248,000. When the Wisconsin Territory was created in 1836, former judge James Doly proposed the 1000 acres in the Four Lakes region as the state capital and named it Madison after the fourth US President James Madison who passed away that year. Madison was incorporated as a village in 1846 and Wisconsin achieved statehood in 1848. Situated in Dane County in south central Wisconsin, it is 77 miles west of Milwaukee and 122 miles northwest of Chicago. With 120 recognized neighborhoods, the north, east and south sides identified as “Blue Collar” and the west as “White Collar” and still resembles that today. Wisconsin state government and the University of Wisconsin-Madison are the two largest employers with evolving consumer services and high-tech in health, bio-tech and advertising. Madison has been named to the Forbes Ten Best Cities list several times in the past decade and in 2015 received the Platinum Level as a Bicycle Friendly Community, only one of 5 US Cities so awarded. It has a vibrant social scene of festivals and celebrations throughout the year and is a diverse, family friendly and inclusive city.
From Nakoma Road, just west of Lake Winga and close to the University of Wisconsin, Dudgeon-Monroe provides a family environment including several schools for K-12 and parks and recreation for families including the Henry Vilas Zoo and Glenway Municipal Golf Course. Shopping, dining and cinema's provide more opportunities and it is easy to get around the area. Madison Metro does provide bus services. A mix of older craftsman style homes, newer builds and apartments are offered with a median price of $370,000, median rents are above $1,100 and incomes averaging about $90,000. The Old Fashioned Restaurant on N. Pinckney Street near the Old Market Place is great for family dining and Churchkey Bar and Grill on University Avenue is one of several spots to stop for happy hour. The Westgate Mall, also on University is a handy place for shopping in the number one rated neighborhood.
Slightly north and east of Dudgeon-Monroe and overlapping a little, Regent is on the shore of Lake Mendota. It has many great schools in neighborhood locations. Take in a hockey game at the Kohl Center. While professional sports have not taken hold, Madison has been voted the #1 College sports town in the nation. Its only a couple hours to Green Bay if you want to see the Packers play football. The Blue Moon Bar and Grill on University has great burgers and Poutine and is very popular. For a special occasion or date night consider Toby's Supper Club on S. Dutch Mill Road. The West Town Mall on W. Town Mall is close for all your shopping needs. With higher median prices at $425,000 and rents over $1,300 incomes are averaging around $66,000. Spend a Sunday at Picnic Point and take along lunch for a great outdoor experience.
South of University Avenue off US 14 lies Wexford. It is a family friendly community of schools, parks and the Crawdaddy Cove Indoor Water Park on Fourier Drive. Reasonable median home prices of $240,000, rents under $500 and incomes in the $89,000 range make this an ideal family community. Otto's Bar and Grill is a great dinner choice on Mineral Point Road with great service and ambiance. Take the kids over to State Street Brats for great burgers and brats and fries on State Street. Great fast service and very family friendly. The Waypoint Public House on W. Broadway in Monona is the new hip and trendy place to go for local, national and imported craft beers and decent food. Madison and its many neighborhoods embody the family values and security that many families hope to find in their new home. Madison has many soccer and little league clubs for kids.