Lake Effect

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Editor's note: This piece was published before the Associated Press declared Joe Biden the winner of Wisconsin. Currently, President Donald Trump's campaign is requesting a recount for the state.    

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The coronavirus pandemic is at an all-time high in Wisconsin. So far, more than 2,100 Wisconsinites have died of COVID-19 and nearly a quarter of a million Wisconsinites have tested positive for the virus.

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Election Day is here, but many Wisconsinites have already cast their votes. Because nearly two million people in Wisconsin voted early and because this is not a state where election officials can begin the count before Election Day, it’s not clear when the results will be in. 

In this unprecedented election, some may look to the U.S. Constitution for guidance in a time of political uncertainty. But the long-serving document, like many of us, wasn’t necessarily prepared for 2020 and leaves some room for interpretation.

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A final NPR Electoral Map analysis has Vice President Joe Biden going into Election Day with an edge over President Donald Trump. But Trump still has a narrow and possible path to reelection.

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As we near what many people hope will be the end of the 2020 election, there are increasing concerns about its fairness. In Wisconsin, as with other states, there have been last minute changes to voting rules that could have a major impact on how legal votes are counted.

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Despite the ongoing threat of COVID-19 in Wisconsin and across the country, a record number of people cast their ballots for the general election. According to the Wisconsin Elections Commission, more than 1.8 million people have already returned their ballots.

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Lake Effect On-Site normally is about getting out into the community and taking a deep dive into a specific area of Milwaukee. But at a time when gathering together can be dangerous, there are still ways to celebrate the many things that our community has to offer.

So, the On-Site series moved off-site to celebrate one of our favorite holidays: Halloween.

Watch the full Lake Effect Off-Site: Halloween Edition below.

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Halloween is often a time when local bands celebrate the season with costumed shows, blowout parties, and eerie music. While the realities of 2020 negate the first two, Milwaukee bands are still finding ways to put out music in spite of the pandemic. 

And as always, Matt Wild has been listening. Wild is one of the co-founders of Milwaukee Record and each month he shares a sample of what he's been listening to for the Milwaukee Music Roundup. 

Here's the latest Milwaukee Music Roundup:

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With the pandemic impacting what would have been a season of new thrilling releases, this year is a great time to revisit your favorite Halloween films. From the classics like Hocus Pocus, The Exorcist or the Scream franchise, there are plenty of movies available to stream at home.

Ryan Jay, Lake Effect's film contributor, shares some of his top movie picks to watch this Halloween:

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Cold and flu season is now upon us. That compounded with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic means it’s time to focus on our immune systems.  

Immune systems are pretty effective against many germs and viruses, but it takes time to fight them. And this year has added stress for many due to the many impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. "So, anything you can do to mitigate that stress by simple measures is going to be very helpful," says Josh Knox, a physician assistant by training and a clinical associate professor at Marquette University’s physician assistant program.

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Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, nearly every part of our lives has been impacted, including real estate developments. Here in Milwaukee, construction has continued to go forward on many projects, but some are having difficulty getting started as funding sources become more tenuous. 

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It’s a common misconception that most LGBTQ history and activism occurred on the east and west coasts. But Wisconsin has actually been a national leader with its pioneering set of legislative victories.

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Every year more than 3 million women in the U.S. are abused by their intimate partners and more than 1,200 are killed by their abusers.

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As of Tuesday, about 235,000 people had returned absentee ballots in Milwaukee County, either by voting early at the polls, mailing them in or dropping them off. That’s about four times the number returned at this time in the 2016 presidential race.

Some municipalities will count the absentee ballots at the polls. Others, like the city of Milwaukee, will count them at a central location called “central count.” The ballots then get run through vote tabulators — either at central count or at polling places.

When can we expect the unofficial results?

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As the number of fall leaves begin to dwindle on trees, they’ve found a new home on our lawns. But before you go and rake them into the street, there might be a better way to put those leaves to use.

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