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a.MKE: Obama address, Winter Gallery Night/Day, WI Watersheds Trust and Scout Lake Beer Garden 1.17.14

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President Barack Obama is expected to announce changes today to U.S. surveillance efforts exposed by intelligence leaker Edward Snowden. Obama will share the recommendations from the Review Group on Intelligence about how NSA domestic and international phone and e-mail surveillance will be gathered and how the government can do a better job of protecting civil liberties in the context of national security. 

Today marks the start of the 26th Annual Winter Gallery Night and Day in Milwaukee. Over 50 venues throughout downtown will feature a variety of art exhibits and the 11th Annual Sculptures on Ice competition begins at 10am today at Catalano Square in the Historic Third Ward.

Southeastern Wisconsin Watersheds Trust this week awarded a total of $48,464 in small grants to 12 groups in Milwaukee County to help pay for projects aimed at curbing flows of storm water off the landscape and improving water quality in rivers and creeks. Projects range from planting trees and rain gardens to slow the flow of storm water into rivers and sewers to adding rain capture and storage systems to new buildings. More info online here.

Milwaukee County is considering a proposal to open another beer garden this summer in Greendale's Scout Lake Park on Loomis Road. If approved, the beer garden would be run by the operator of the Estabrook Park Beer Garden, and generate $80,000 for the park system in the first year.