I hope this message finds everyone with warm memories of Christmas 2015! Speaking of 2015, it went out with a bang for the VRA. It was an action-filled end to the year with the Christmas tree project, the door decorating contest, a special meeting and of course our progressive dinner.
Scott Lusk PresidentJoe Singler Vice PresidentSally Zelonis Secretary
Our 2016 VRA board members are as follows:
Todd Rech PresidentSara Martini Vice PresidentErika Singler TreasurerGary Angstadt Secretary
Christmas Tree Project
A big thank you to Jane Forbes and Erika Singler for coordinating the 2015 VRA Christmas Tree Project. The village looked festive! In fact, there were 77 trees spread around the village. Nearly 50 of those trees were delivered by volunteers on the snowy Saturday before Thanksgiving. Thank you to all of the volunteers who made this possible. A special thanks to David and Kathy Brown for allowing tree delivery to their 5th street location and providing a warm place to meet. Our tree event is a wonderful example of people getting together and doing something that makes our neighborhood even more special.
Door Decorating Contest
The second annual VRA Door Decorating Contest was an even bigger success this year with 19 total entrants. Sally Zelonis brought this wonderful idea from Bristol, Rhode Island, where she and her husband Mark, lived previously. The door decorating contest is a great way to get both the local businesses and residents excited for the holiday season.
1st place: Melissa Brewer N. Main Street
2nd place: Vicki Savidge Cedar Street
3rd place: Tristan and Kate Coram Pine Street
Thanks to Sally for starting this new tradition in the Village. I would also like to thank Heather Lusk, Sara Martini, Kathy Scales Brown, Erika Singler and Diane Schultz for judging the event. Judging was difficult with so many great entries.
The VRA progressive dinner took place Saturday, December 5th. The dinner proved to be another successful night of fun, food and great camaraderie. The event is a wonderful way to connect with old friends and meet new friends, as well.
Kathy Scales Brown does an absolutely wonderful job putting this special evening together. It takes a great deal of coordination and planning. Kathy makes it look so easy! Please thank Kathy for making this event such a success.
I also want to thank Phil and Sara Martini, Jonathan and Lindsay Gillman and Stewart and Suzanne Worell for inviting us into their beautiful homes.
Nearly 30 members attended the December 8th meeting. Lance Lantz, Street and Stormwater Superintendent and Gavin Merriman, Stormwater Program Manager spoke about storm water drainage in the village. Unfortunately, storm water drainage became a larger issue with the abnormal rain events last summer. I felt Lance and Gavin made a very good presentation, outlining the current status of the village storm water infrastructure. To summarize, much of the village has old infrastructure with various materials and sizes that leads to a less than optimal system. Updating this system would be an extremely large and expensive endeavor. It was encouraging to hear that a two phase plan exists to begin corrective measures. The focus of this project is to update one of the main trunks that collects much of the village storm water and runs it toward Eagle Creek. Starting at this point will assure the main trunk will be able to handle up stream pressure. Phase one of the plan is scheduled to start in 2016. Mr. Merriman did make it clear that this will not solve all of the Village issues, but it is a good first step. Funding for this type of endeavor is a challenge. If you are interested in more information, Lance and Gavin can be reached at the Street and Stormwater department at 317-873-4544, or by email: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org.
What can you do to help?
*Contact your town council representative if you have concerns about this issue. Our concerns may assist them when prioritizing funding allocations during budgeting.
*Report issues of flooding to the Stormwater department. The department tracks these events helping create an awareness of problem areas.
Mr. Lantz also discussed the potential stop light at the intersection at Oak and 1st street. He shared that a 2013 study indicated that the intersection is not functioning optimally for approximately one hour in the evening rush, but it was otherwise deemed acceptable. Lance indicated that at this time, there are no active plans to change the current stop sign to a light.
Special thanks to recently elected Town Councilor Joshua Garrett for attending the meeting. Mr. Garrett will take over as District 5 Councilor in January. District 5 encompasses much of the Village. The VRA looks forward to a great working relationship with Josh.
I look forward to 2016. My hope is that it is a healthy, happy and successful year for all. Happy New Year!
Welcome to 2016, but first we want to tell you one more story about 2015. On Saturday, December 5, forty some villagers got together for the 7th annual Holiday Progressive Dinner. Everyone brought an appetizer, dinner side dish or a dessert to the three homes that hosted the festivities.
The hosts for appetizers were Sara and Phil Martini, Bailey Court. Unfortunately, their drink namesake was not part of the festivities. We were concerned that it might impede our progress to the next home! The hosts for the dinner were Jon and Lyndsay Gilman, Poplar Street. They moved most of their furniture so we could bring in tables and chairs for everyone. This is no small feat when you have a toddler and baby in the house. Thank you, Gilmans! The desserts were hosted by Stuart and Suzanne Worrel, Ash Street. We were welcomed to all levels of their home to indulge in the delicious desserts!