June Message and Meeting info

The June 2010 meeting will be held on the 21st at 6:45pm at the Fitness and Wellness Center.

The Agenda includes a presentation from a representative from the City if Norfolk Schools. We will also be giving away a door prize – $25 gift certificate to the Pancake House.

Here is President Jim English’s message for June, 2010:

By Jim English

Dear Neighbors,

The June meeting will mark the last meeting of the first half of the civic league year until we resume our schedule again in September. Summer is just around the corner and schools will be out and hopefully we will all enjoy some vacation time. Over the summer, please continue to enjoy the Norfolk Fitness and Wellness Center. There are over 7000 members now and if you are not a member, please consider joining. We are fortunate to have the opportunity to take advantage of this facility in our own back yard. Also, we hope to be distributing Flags on the Fourth- thanks to the efforts of our Treasurer Ray Duron. The flags come to us courtesy of Senator Ralph Northam and Delegate Paula Miller. We need your help on this endeavor as well, so please contact Ray if you would like to help distribute flags on the 4th. Ray, thanks for coordinating this effort. I know you will once again do an outstanding job for this patriotic event, as we will see all of our streets impressively lined with American flags.

I wish to thank Barbara Ross for her continued dedicated service as our newsletter editor. She continues to do an excellent job preparing the newsletter each month. She has done this for us for the past six years. This takes a significant amount of time to complete and Barbara’s newsletters are informative and always on time. Barbara, we thank you for your service and look forward to your newsletters again in the fall. Enjoy your two months of newsletter free time. Also, a special thanks to Joan Griffey and Ray Duron for keeping the records of our meetings and ensuring that our finances are in order. Joan, also thank you for your great efforts as Chair of the Beautification Committee. Joan is now also the Secretary of the Norfolk Federation of Civic Leagues. Your tenacity does pay off and we will soon be seeing the flower planters on the streets in the business district. Also, many thanks are in order to Sue Classick, our Vice President who is in charge of organizing the delivery of our newsletters each month with our many newsletter carriers. Thanks also to these dedicated carriers for their time in delivering our newsletters to you. This also is no small task. Finally a special thanks to Martin Thomas Jr. for his service as Vice President, providing us needed guidance at our Executive Committee meetings and for keeping our website up to date. Martin is also the Webmaster for WardsCornerNow and an active participant in the leadership of that newly formed group. Thanks also to you, our members, for your continued support by attending our meetings each month and working to improve our neighborhood. Thank you all!

For those of you attending our last civic league meeting where City Manager Regina Williams spoke to us, I want you to think about what you heard in her very informative session about the budget and budget process. Were you happy and satisfied with her words to us about the city’s efforts to improve Wards Corner? If you were, so be it. If you were not and did not like what you heard or thought it was a repeat of what has been said time and time again, please let our new Councilman know that you are not satisfied with the attention being given to Wards Corner. I was especially happy to see our newly elected Ward One Councilman Andy Protogyrou in attendance to hear what Ms. Williams said. I was also happy to see newly elected Councilman Tommie Smigiel in attendance. They both were introduced and had the opportunity to say a few words. I know that Andy Protogyrou is already hard at work for us on improving Wards Corner. He and Tommy Smigiel will be sworn in on July 1st as our new councilmen. We wish them the best as they begin their work for us. Remember, the power is in the group and only with all of us speaking out and demanding improvements for our area will that action happen. I know I will continue pushing for improvements for Wards Corner, but we need to do this together. I know we will see some improvement in the area over the summer. A. J. Gators is expected to open sometime in late summer. That hopefully will be the beginning of many new improvements in the business district.

Your job over the summer is to think about what improvements you would like to see in our individual and collective neighborhoods. Please let any member of the Executive Committee know what these improvements should be. Do you want improved lighting at the Northshore playground? Do you want more enforcement of cars parking on lawns? Do you see areas of city infrastructure (streets, curbs and gutters, etc.) in our neighborhood that need addressing? Is crime a problem that needs to be addressed more aggressively? Think about what improvements you would really like to see in the entire Wards Corner area. When we meet in September, we will hopefully have a list of these needs that we can share with you. Over the summer, rest assured that the dedication and commitment of the membership of Wards Corner Now, the Task Force, Business Association and area Civic Leagues (including and especially ours) will continue the push with our city elected officials and senior city management staff to move ahead for making the Wards Corner area great once again. We will not be taking the summer off, but will continue our important work.

Finally, please have a safe, relaxing and enjoyable summer. We hope to see you again in the fall at our September meeting.