Don’t miss Richardson Heights Flag Day

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Save the date! The Richardson Heights annual Flag Day celebration is just around the corner.

Flag Day is our neighborhood’s family-friendly signature event of the year.

Where: Durham Park at Weatherred and Scottsdale
When: Saturday, June 11, from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The children’s bike, trike and wagon parade starts at 11 a.m. Come early to decorate.

Here’s what else well have on tap:

  • Music
  • Kona ice. Complimentary tickets for a shaved ice for Richardson Heights Neighborhood Association members.
  • Temporary tattoo artist and a balloon artist.
  • Hot dogs, and veggie options. Or bring a picnic.
  • Lemonade, water
  • Trolly train ride
  • Door prizes, and Heights t-shirt sales

This event is for the residents of the Richardson Heights subdivision, but it is open to anyone in our community. It’s free for members of the Richardson Heights Neighborhood Association and their families, as their membership dues pay for this event. If you are not a member we’ll have a membership table at the entrance, or you can join online. Or a $2 donation for the food per person from non-members.

See you there!
Richard
president@richardsonheights.org

 

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Help Neighbor Day is a huge success

Neighbors/Friends-

Our  Help Your Neighbor Day, Saturday, April 30, was a huge success.

Thank you to everyone who came out to volunteer.  All three of our neighbors in need felt loved and appreciated, which was the win.  These folks don’t just need their houses cleaned up, they need friendships.  It was fun to see the homeowners interacting with our teams for most of the time.

Going forward, let’s continue to reach out to the neighbors we served yesterday.  Also, I’d like to have a meeting later this summer to talk about expanding HYND, so we can reach more people.

A special thanks to our two sponsors: Ironwood Landscape and Energy Attic.

I’m thankful for friends like Tim Kahle and Ryan Amerson who believe in serving their neighbor through their businesses.

Below are some pics from the event.  Thanks again everyone!!

Scott Rhoades

Scott is a board member of the Richardson Heights Neighborhood Association.

Help Neighbor Day started three years ago in Richardson Heights. The purpose of this project is to work together as neighbors to help other neighbors who need assistance with small projects around their homes. This is an opportunity for the community to reach out to those neighbors who might not be able to complete a project on their own. The person might be older. The person might have had recent surgery or maybe the job requires more than one person. The neighborhood can help!

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2016 member meeting April 27 at Heights Elementary

At our next member meeting we have some Q&A time with members of the city council, and a special guest, Chrissy Cortez-Mathis of Texas Blackland Gardening. We will also review one of our neighborhood landscape projects which is nearing the implementation stage.

Where: Richardson Heights Elementary
101 N Floyd Rd.
When:   Wednesday, April 27, 7-8:30 p.m.

This is our annual membership drive meeting. Membership in the Richardson Heights Neighborhood Association runs from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31 Membership is only $15 for a family. You can pay at the meeting by check or cash. You can also pay online at our website: richardsonheights.org

Your membership finances our annual events, these meetings and special projects like the redesigning the landscaping for our neighborhood entryways.

If you have young children we invite you to bring them along. We are setting up an additional space with adult supervision in the school’s gym to play videos for the kids while we have the meeting.

Chrissy has been presenting gardening talks in the Dallas area since 2008. She focuses on WaterWise Gardening, creating landscapes that are ecologically sustainable & do not require additional water once established. More about Chrissy at texasblacklandgardening.com.

See you at the meeting.

Best,
Richard Dotson
President, RHNA

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Richardson Heights News – Fall/Winter 2015

The Richardson Heights Neighborhood Association newsletter is now online

Food Trucks, a Special View of Richardson, and a Neighborhood Update @ Fall Forum, Nov. 12
Join us at Fall Forum where we welcome two special guests, local commentator Rawlins Gilliland and Food Truck Park entrepreneur Michelle Chesney, to talk about innovative entrepreneurial development and being inspired by the changes in our community.

Get ready for the city bond and charter elections
We’re just a few days away from a city bond election and, for the first time in a long time, a massive referendum on amendments to the city charter.

Support Richardson Heights Elementary!
It’s really easy to show your support for Richardson Heights Elementary. Find out how.

How Durham Park Came to Be
Find out how Durham Park was created and neighborhood residents worked  together to make  it happen.

Membership goals reached
Thanks to you we reached our membership goals this year and we now have over 200 members.

Yards of the Month
Check out the yard’s of the month for 2015. Yard of the month winners are awarded a nursery gift card sponsored by Bruce Miller Nursery.

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Fall Forum 2015

foodtruckFood Trucks, a Special View of Richardson, and a Neighborhood Update @ Fall Forum

Join us at Fall Forum where we welcome two special guests to talk about innovative entrepreneurial development and being inspired by the changes in our community.

Where: Taco Joint, Heights Shopping CenterWhen: Thursday, Nov. 12,
7  to 8:30 p.m.

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Do you have a neighborhood yard sign yet?

Richardson Heights Neighborhood Association members can pick one up at the Fall forum.

Not a member yet? Check out the membership form in this newsletter.

You may have heard Rawlins Gilliland tell his personal stories on KERA 90.1 in the past. Rawlins is a gifted storyteller, humorist, and author and will weave his unique view for us a Fall Forum.

We also have a special guest, Michelle Chesney, operator of the newly opened Richardson Food Truck Park which is a few minutes drive away on Bishop Avenue.  Michelle’s going to talk about innovative redevelopment and how that can have a positive  impact on our community.

You will also hear about the results of the Bond and Charter Elections. You can also come pick up one of our new neighborhood signs to show your neighborhood pride. Come out and show your appreciation to Taco Joint for letting us use their meeting space. See you there!

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President’s Message – October, 2015

Get ready for the city bond and charter elections

By Richard Dotson
President, Richardson Heights Neighborhood Association
president@richardsonheights.org

We’re just a few days away from a city bond election and, for the first time in a long time, a massive referendum on amendments to the city charter.

Election Day: Tuesday, Nov. 3,
7 a.m. – 7 p.m.Voting locations: Richardson Heights neighborhood: RISD Professional Development Center, 701 W. Belt Line Rd.Cottonwood Heights: Dover Elementary., 700 Dover Dr.Heights Park: Richardson Heights Elem., 101 N. Floyd Rd.Bond referendum information pageCity Charter Amendment information page

I’m going to focus this president’s message on what these mean to you –basically, why you should care.

I’m not going to advise you on how to vote. That’s your decision to make. What I am going to do is encourage you to look at the information packets , and if you don’t have those, use the links in the information box to the right.

The information pages will describe what is covered in the bond packages – such as street upgrades, traffic improvements, updates to public buildings. The costs are explained, and how the debt on the bonds will be covered.  You will also get a list of all the charter amendments and a checklist that will help you in the voting booth.

So why should you care? Very simply, both of these will have long term impact on our community. The bond election has improvements that will affect our neighborhood. The charter amendments provide the guide for how our city is run.

Read on. If you don’t have the information packets, use the web links to the right. If you don’t have Internet access, there are more handouts at City Hall, 411 W. Arapaho.

Your vote really does count.

Bond election overview

If you don’t know how a bond election works, every few years the city asks its residents to approve the sale of bonds to pay for public works like street upgrades, city buildings, park improvements, and sidewalks. Our neighborhood has benefited directly from these in the past, such as the sidewalk repairs from the 2010 bond election, the bridge work on Dumont and Weatherred, and construction of Durham Park.

The city sells the bonds over a six year period in a manner that doesn’t raise taxes. Every year, the city staff proposes the list of projects that will be covered. If you look through the city’s bond information packet, you’ll see there are several projects around our community. Of course, the other projects outside of our neighborhood also have a benefit as we use other city services – like the traffic lights on the way to the grocery store.

Here’s a short list what the bond election has on the list for our neighborhood area:

Street renovation, 600-700 block of Scottsdale (there’s a typo on the city’s project map – the 700 block of Sherwood is not included in the list); Cottonwood Park playground redevelopment; Senior Center renovation on West Arapaho; Custer Road renovation between Arapaho and Campbell; improving and updating Belt Line Road lanes at Inge (just west of Central); flood prevention at Belt Line and Cottonwood Drive; adding study areas and other renovations to the Richardson Library.

These are just a few of the projects. The full six-year list of improvements cover all sections of the city. The cost totals $115 million.

City charter amendments

During the election you will also have time to vote on amendments to the City Charter. If you still have the overview the city sent, you want to keep the last page. It’s a checklist for you to keep track of how you want to vote for the various amendments. If you don’t have the checklist, you can download a copy from the information page.

Why is this important? Because there are 83 amendments to the charter. The checklist is your ticket to get through the vote quickly.

So why should you care about the City Charter election? Here are a couple of reasons to consider:

  • The city has not reviewed the charter in its entirety in nearly 30 years. A lot can change in that time: state laws, municipal funding mechanisms can evolve or become outdated. This was long overdue, and helps ensure that the city is compliant with state and national laws and follows widely adopted best practices in municipal government.
  • Clean up. When the voters successfully placed direct election of the mayor on the ballot in 2012, they did not include provisions for vacancies, nor did they consider the role of the mayor in relation to other council members (e.g., what special role do they have on the council, if any?). The amendments clear up these ambiguities, bring us in compliance with state laws and even clean up the charter grammatically.
  • Another calls for the City Council to order a comprehensive review of the charter at least once every ten years. No more elections with 83 proposed amendments.

This is your city and your charter. You have a say in how it should be amended. Study up on the documentation and fill out your checklist.

See you at the polls.

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Support Richardson Heights Elementary!

By Crystalyn Roberts

It’s really easy to show your support for Richardson Heights Elementary. All it takes is $10 a year.

That $10, in the form of your membership in the school’s Parent Teacher Association (PTA), helps fund programs and activities for the teachers and students, as well new classroom equipment. It also gets the school closer to their goal of reaching a one-to-one ratio of PTA members to students.

And you don’t have to be a parent to join.

Why is this important? The school is a core pillar of this neighborhood. Community support is vital toward helping the school grow our next generation of community members and leaders. Good schools help improve the neighborhood’s value – both real and in reputation.

Go online at http://www.joinpta.org > choose the state > Richardson ISD > Richardson Heights Elementary > use your credit card to pay the $10 membership plus a $1 handling fee. Done.

You can download a form at http://goo.gl/QXHcMN , or pick one up at the neighborhood Fall Forum. Fill out the form and drop it off, along with the $10, at Richardson Heights Elementary. Or, send a note to Crystalyn Roberts, Crystalyn.anne@gmail.com, and I’ll pick it up for you.

For more about the school’s PTA, go to http://www.rhepta.org

 

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How Durham Park Came to Be

By Andrew Laska

We have a lot of new residents and young families moving into Richardson Heights. Many of our new neighbors have never heard the story of how Durham Park came to be. Here is a much abbreviated version of what should be considered a prime example of residents working to improve their neighborhood. Durham Park stands as a testament to citizen participation. Without neighborhood vision and drive, and the City of Richardson buying into that vision, the park could never have been. There were at least two failed efforts to obtain a park in the Heights area that preceded Durham Park but space does not allow me to describe them.

The genesis for what is now Durham Park was started with a revival in the 2008/2009 timeframe. I and Barry Hand – then President of Cottonwood Heights – worked to start a plan to lobby the City of Richardson to create a full-fledged park in the Heights area. Ultimately this idea became one of the items on the 2009 Heights Plan for Excellence – A Plan for Neighborhood Revitalization. Richardson Heights, Cottonwood Heights, and Heights Park presented to the plan to the City Council and eventually all five areas were addressed.

With that the neighborhood associations helped place the concept of “parks for underserved areas” on an update for the City’s Parks and Open Space Plan. Shortly thereafter the City began to assemble the 2010 City Bond Program. With the help of then City Council members, money was allotted for a park on the Heights area. Residents of Heights voted in favor of the Bond Package registering the highest “For” vote in the City.

Later in 2012, the City was able to assemble property by voluntary purchases of several homes—some of which were for sale anyway. The Parks Department then held focus groups and public meetings. StudioOutside was hired to design the park based on public input and the end design matches closely with the neighborhoods’ desires. The park opened in June of 2013.

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Thank you! Membership goal reached

Thank You! Thank Our Membership Sponsors!

membersponsorsThanks to you we reached our membership goals this year and we now have over 200 members. We will get an exact count at Fall Forum.

We also could not have done it without our generous membership sponsors who gave gift certificates and other prizes.

We hope to do this contest next year. If you have a service or business you want to share, then contact us to be a 2016 RHNA Membership Sponsor!

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2015 yards of the month

Yards of the Month

By LR Denton
RHNA Environmental Chair

Yard of the month winners are awarded a nursery gift card sponsored by Bruce
Miller Nursery
, located at
1000 E. Beltline Rd.

YOMapril15

YOMmay15

YOMjune15

YOMjuly15

YOMaug15

YOMSept15

YOMoct15

 

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