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Volunteer to Remake Clifton Middle School's Library Sept 22

HISD’s Clifton Middle School’s library is turning a new page, and volunteers are needed to help create a well-functioning library, something the school’s been lacking for some time.

A Community Service Day, 9a.m. - noon Saturday, September 22, is calling on volunteers to help new Principal Georgina Castilleia create a proper library for the school’s students during the first phase of this project.

Volunteers can help paint, clean and move the library for this important effort, designed to improve the learning environment for Clifton’s students.

Clifton Middle School Community Service Day

9 a.m. - Noon, Saturday, Sept. 22, 2018

Clifton Middle School, 6001 Golden Forest Drive, Houston, TX 77092

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We'll Miss You, Donald Perkins, Super Neighborhood Angel

Gratitude from the Super Neighborhood Alliance for the great Donald Perkins, Chief of Staff, City of Houston District K, who passed too soon on August 15, 2018. Donald was instrumental in forming Super Neighborhoods throughout Houston. His honesty, drive, and good-natured hard work and friendship will be sorely missed. The following is an SNA letter to friends and family of Donald Perkins.

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Please accept our heartfelt condolences on the untimely passing of Donald Perkins, a tremendous loss for the City of Houston, District K and the Super Neighborhood Alliance.

We express sincere appreciation from the Super Neighborhood Councils and the Super Neighborhood Alliance of Houston for his many contributions as a key participant, guiding, directing, and developing Super Neighborhood Councils, their communities, and their leaders. Donald’s endeavors in community planning and in District K formed the cornerstone of this organization, breathing vitality and courage into it.

As we approach the 20th anniversary of the Super Neighborhood Program initiated by Mayor Brown, we acknowledge Donald’s contribution of nurturing and organizing that surely came from his heart. Donald was the visionary executor of the mission and he performed it masterfully. We celebrate these achievements and know Houston and District K are the great places they are today because of his influences.

God speed to Donald - we will miss him. 

Regards,

Michael Huffmaster,  Chair, Super Neighborhood Alliance

cc: Mayor Sylvester Turner, District K CM Martha Castex-Tatum

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$2.5 Billion Flood Risk Reduction Bond Election is August 25, 2018

White Oak Bayou Watershed

Harris County Commissioners Court has called a $2.5 billion Flood Risk Reduction bond election for August 25, 2018, for the Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD). Registered voters in Harris County can vote to fund flood risk reduction projects throughout the county.

> 2018 Bond Proposed Project List as of July 11, 2018 (PDF)

An interactive map shows the approximate locations of more than 150 potential projects being considered for bond funding. According to HCFCD, these potential projects have been identified to provide flood risk reduction benefits in the watersheds in which the projects are located.

Potential projects indicated on the interactive map represent projects that would meet the goal of the bond election to both assist with recovery after previous flooding events and to make our county more resilient for the future.

On the interactive map, type in an address of interest (home or business) to find your watershed and learn about proposed projects for that area.

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SN 12 to Host HISD Trustee Runoff Candidates Himsl & Santos Nov. 29

 Gretchen Himsl, HISD Dist. 1 Trustee Candidate

Gretchen Himsl, HISD Dist. 1 Trustee Candidate

Facing a runoff on December 9, the top-two vote getters in the recent HISD District 1 Trustee election will be the featured guests at the Super Neighborhood 12 Council Meeting, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, November 29, 2017, at Candlelight Community Center, 1520 Candlelight Lane.

HISD Trustee Dist. 1 Candidates Gretchen Himsl and Elizabeth Santos will discuss their approach to public education and take questions from the audience.

 Elizabeth Santos, HISD Dist. 1 Trustee Candidate

Elizabeth Santos, HISD Dist. 1 Trustee Candidate

With HISD trustees serving four-year terms, the upcoming District 1 runoff could impact the lives of the community's students for years to come. HISD runs 287 public schools with nearly 29,000 employees serving 216,000 students. About 100 different languages are spoken among the HISD student body.

Don't miss this opportunity to hear from HISD trustee candidates Himsl and Santos about their plans for one of the nation's largest public school systems.

For more about Elizabeth Santos, visit http://www.santos4hisd.com. For more about Gretchen Himsl, visit http://www.gretchenforhisd.com.

To find out where to vote in the December 9 HISD runoff election, visit http://www.harrisvotes.org.

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Loads of Family Fun to Celebrate a Worthy Cause: Festival of Abilities Oct. 28

Celebrate Halloween weekend at fun-filled event for all ages and abilities, 3-7 p.m. Sunday, October 28, 2017, at Oak Forest Park, 2010 Judiway. 

Proceeds benefit the future Playground for All Abilities being planned for Oak Forest Park. Once funded, it will be the first city playground in the central northwest area community that is accessible and inclusive of kids with disabilities.

Festival at a Glance

  • Adaptive sports and an obstacle course
  • Petting zoo, pick-your-own pumpkin patch and trick or treating
  • SIRE therapeutic horses
  • Costume contest with prizes
  • Gymnastics, tennis drills, taekwondo demos, soccer and games
  • Appearance by Dynamo Diesel
  • Art tile painting fundraiser, raffle and auction
  • International food court with BB's Café, El Pollo Loco, Hartz Krispy Chicken on Pinemont, King's BierHaus, Peli Peli Kitchen, & The Union Kitchen
  • King’s BierHaus Craft Biergarten (21+ with valid ID) including Back Pew, Brash, Great Heights, Eureka Heights, Karbach, Saint Arnold, Shiner Beers, Southern Star and Spindle Tap

Special performances by Fly Dance Company, Cookie Joe’s Dance Company, and The River Performance Troupe

Master of Ceremonies – Scott Arthur, Texas Radio Hall of Famer

Cookie Joe's Dance Company, inclusive of dancers with special needs, will perform a "She's Like Wind" tribute dedicated to Cookie’s childhood friend, fellow Waltrip High School graduate, and dance classmate Patrick "Buddy" Swayze and his mother, her mentor Patsy Swayze.

Festival packages and event wristbands

Check out the festival packages and donate online at http://houstonparksboard.org/events/festival_of_abilities_2017/ 

$10 in advance | $15 at the event (Under 2-free). Credit cards, cash or check made payable to Houston Parks Board, a 501(c)3 -- note "Festival of Abilities."

For more about this Halloween celebration, contact Elyssa Horvath, chair, Friends of Oak Forest Park, at FriendsofOakForestPark@yahoo.com. Or call 832-771-8030. 

Visit http://houstonparksboard.org/projects/oak_forest_park/

Like https://www.facebook.com/FriendsofOakForestPark/

 

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Magnum Manor Volunteer Captures Success at Wainwright Elementary

Just down the street from Jessi Heiner's Magnum Manor home is a public school named after "Skinny" Wainwright, a veteran of both World Wars who survived mistreatment in Japanese prison camps with his soldiers before being awarded a Congressional Medal of Honor and promoted to four-star general. Skinny, known to get down in the foxholes with his troops, would have appreciated seeing Heiner and other community members digging deep to help motivated teachers and staff at his namesake school give youngsters a fighting chance at a good education. 

As Magnum Manor Civic Club President, Heiner wondered about the education provided at Wainwright Elementary, an HISD math and sciences magnet school just a couple of blocks from Magnum Road. The nearby school, Heiner says, had come up during civic meetings. She decided that personal experience was the only way to find out just what Wainwright Elementary was all about. 

So, she spent several days this year visiting Wainwright, its students, staff, principal and parents.

Popping in, often unannounced, Heiner and her cameras captured a school working vigorously to engage students from all walks of life. The result is a video Heiner shot that should be compelling to anyone who believes public schools and their surrounding communities have the potential to vastly improve lives.

"Needless to say, I fell in love with the campus, the kiddos, the teachers, the principal and admin team," says Heiner. 

Heiner, who is not a parent, also ginned up a bucket list of ways SN 12 residents can help the school. Volunteers, whether parents or not, can help Wainwright Elementary continue its mission to become a valuable asset to the community, Heiner says.

"Wainwright Elementary School is always looking for volunteers from the community to help out," explains Heiner. "If you would like to volunteer, please register with the Volunteer in Public Schools program by visiting www.houstonisd.org/vips."

There are many ways to help:

  1. SDMC (Shared Decision-Making Committee): Wainwright is looking for 1-2 community members to be part of this committee that brings community members, parents and staff together to help determine the path for the school.
  2. Reading MENtor Program: Wainwright is looking for gentlemen in the community to adopt a classroom and come read with the students once a month.
  3. Assist Teachers: Teachers often need help with classroom projects and preparing materials for activities. They would love to have community volunteers help them out.
  4. Habitat and Outdoor Classroom: Wainwright has a large habitat that is currently not in use, but with much potential and an asset that could become an outdoor classroom as part of the school's STEM program. The school will be looking for volunteers to help clean up and plan out projects for this interesting space. And anyone connected with local landscaping companies that would be interested in bidding to regularly maintain this space, please let the school know.

In fact, a small clean-up event is planned for the Wainwright habitat. From 9-11 a.m. Saturday, November 4, volunteers will gather at Wainwright to do some basic cleaning and organization of the habitat area. During the event, plans will be made for upcoming projects designed to celebrate Earth day in April 2018.

For school updates, follow Wainwright Elementary on Facebook and Twitter, where volunteer opportunities will also be posted.

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Harris County Judge Ed Emmett to Speak Aug. 1 at Grace Church

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett will be the featured speaker during a special event hosted by the Garden Oaks, Candlelight Plaza and Candlelight Oaks civic clubs at 7 p.m. Tuesday, August 1, at Grace Church, 3754 N. Shepherd (at 38th Street).

Elected in 2007, Judge Emmett manages the nation's third largest county. He also is director of Harris County's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HCOHSEM), chairman of the Harris County Juvenile Board and chairman of the Conference of Urban Counties Policy Committee. 

In addition to his numerous duties leading Harris County, Judge Emmett takes particular interest in transportation and energy issues. 

He was named Transportation Person of the Year by Transportation Clubs International, and was recognized as one of the Top 20 Logistics Professionals by Logistics Forum.

A member of the Texas House of Representatives from 1979 to 1987, Judge Emmett was chairman of the Committee on Energy and a member of the Transportation Committee. He also represented Texas on national committees overseeing energy and transportation policy. Emmett served under President George H. W. Bush in 1989 as a commissioner for the Interstate Commerce Commission. 

For more background on Judge Emmett, visit the latest Garden Oaks Gazette here.

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SN 12 Clean-Up Project with Scarborough High is May 20

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Scarborough High school students will be earning community service hours when they volunteer to help clean up Mangum Road in Super Neighborhood 12 from 9 a.m. - noon, Saturday, May 20, 2017. 

Sponsored by My Brother's Keeper (City of Houston Health Department), Super Neighborhood 12, Scarborough High School, White Oak Baptist Church and MytiBurger (which is graciously providing breakfast), student volunteers will join Super Neighborhood 12 residents to clean up trash, remove weeds and clear shrubs, edges and curbs. Volunteers will meet at the White Oak Baptist Church parking lot, 3615 Mangum Rd., Houston, 77092.

We hope this event will lead to more clean-up efforts throughout Super Neighborhood 12. Come out and help improve your community this Saturday, May 20!

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Pennies for Our Playground Launch Party

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The Pennies for Our Playground Launch Party 3-6 p.m. Sunday, Feb 19., 3508 Oak Forest Dr. 

All proceeds benefit the future Playground for All Abilities at Oak Forest Park. Admission is $5/family in advance | $10 at the door.

Come and join a fun afternoon of family activities:

  • My House Fitness challenge course (all levels welcome)
  • ReadyFlipGo gymnastics
  • Masterful Mommy crafts
  • Art tile painting fundraiser with Mr. Roy
  • Idea Lab Kids projects
  • ReCoop Designs salvaged wood decorating
  • DJ by Retrograde Events
  • Local business promotions and more!

Event info: http://houstonparksboard.org/blog/pennies-for-playground/  

REGISTRATION/CONTACT INFO
Email Elyssa Horvath at FriendsofOakForestPark@yahoo.com to register in advance for the event through 2/18, sponsor or host a vendor tent.

For tax deductible donations $15+, including signing up for Idea Lab Kids, go to “Donation-other” at the bottom and note your selections in the comments:

http://houstonparksboard.org/projects/oak_forest_park/

Or by check (note Oak Forest Park) mailed to: Houston Parks Board, 300 N. Post Oak Ln., Houston, TX 77024

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Halloween Celebration Oct. 29: Festival of Abilities to Benefit Oak Forest Park

Celebrate Halloween weekend with fitness, art, dance, music and fun for all at the Festival of Abilities, 3-7 p.m. Saturday, October 29, 2016, at Oak Forest Park, 2100 Judiway Street.

The festival will benefit plans to build an accessible, inclusive playground for all abilities at Oak Forest Park. 

Festival goers of all ages and abilities can enjoy a bevy of fun activities, including:

  • Stroll & Roll costume parade;
  • Arts Alive! “Halloween Happening” expressive arts program;
  • petting zoo;
  • fitness for all;
  • arts and crafts;
  • pick-your-own pumpkin patch;
  • Disney-trained caricature artist Tom Rye;
  • games, music, trick or treating;
  • craft beer garden and wine tasting (21+ with valid ID), festival food and refreshments

Fly Dance Company -- "the Gentlemen of Hip-Hop" -- will perform at 5:30 p.m. The River Performance Troupe will open the live show.

Enjoy scrimmages with the TIRR Memorial Hermann Hotwheels -- defending national champion wheelchair basketball team, 2015 junior champs -- and TIRR Texans wheelchair rugby.

Cheer on the Fireballs power soccer team, plus participants in a Monster Dash adaptive obstacle course, hosted by HPARD Adaptive Sports & Recreation.

Bayou City Play will feature its “loose parts” adventure play area.

The community can become part of the legacy at Oak Forest Park with the Mad Potter painted art tile project fundraiser, where a $100 donation will get a "buy one, get one" tile through October 29 (future paint days TBA including pre-purchased tiles).

Guests of Honor will included Houston Mayor Pro Tem Ellen Cohen, Council Member District C, and Michelle Colvard, the park project’s ADA advisor; a former Ms. Wheelchair America and Texas; as well as the former Executive Director for the Mayor’s Office of People with Disabilities, Ms. Colvard was a driving force in building the Vale-Asche Foundation Playground Without Limits at Memorial Park and has been a lifelong advocate for people with disabilities.

All net proceeds will benefit the Oak Forest Park Revitalization - More Than1Way 2Play campaign. A $10/person donation is suggested (ages 2+) with cash, checks payable to Houston Parks Board (note "Oak Forest Park"), credit cards, or online donations at http://houstonparksboard.org/projects/oak_forest_park/ (select donation: "other amount"). All donations to Houston Parks Board are tax-deductible.

You can "Like" the Oak Forest project at https://www.facebook.com/FriendsofOakForestPark/

Interested in volunteering? Sign up with the Leather Apron Foundation, which is coordinating festival volunteers in two-hour shifts, at http://bit.ly/OFPark2016

For more information on the Festival of Abilities, contact Elyssa Horvath, event coordinator FriendsofOakForestPark@yahoo.com, or call/text 832-771-8030.

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Houston Bike Plan Heads to Council for August Vote; Plan Envisions 1,789 Miles of Bikeways

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Houston Bike Plan Heads to Council for August Vote; Plan Envisions 1,789 Miles of Bikeways

It's time to contact your City Council Members if you'd like Houston to become a more bike-friendly city.

One year and 4,000 online survey responses later – coupled with dozens of public meetings and community events – the Houston Bike Plan is bringing a vision to a Houston City Council vote in August that could make a car-driven city the gold standard for bicycling metropolises.

Council Members reviewed the plan in June that calls for 1,789 miles of bikeways across Houston with more off-road trails, high-comfort bike lanes to make riders feel safer, and connections so riders can get to where they need to go.

While ambitious – the total plan is a 20-year vision with a $500 million price tag – planners believe it can be partially implemented through grants and existing dedicated city funding of up to $5 million per year. In fact, planners believe adding close to 800 miles of bikeways is doable within the next decade. Beyond that, creative funding will be required, such as seeking donors or a possible referendum to give voters the opportunity to weigh in.

Nearly 700 miles of proposed bikeways would be separated from automobile traffic creating what are called “high-comfort” lanes. Numerous surveys indicate people want to bike but they just don’t feel safe, or comfortable, doing so on city streets.

ADDING CONNECTIONS TO MORE DESTINATIONS: JOBS, PARKS, SCHOOLS

If the plan comes to fruition, it would connect more Houstonians with more destinations via bicycle to job centers, parks, schools and entertainment venues.

The idea is that adding connections between existing bikeways would encourage more bicycling. Currently, Houston has a hodgepodge network of bike lanes and trails making it challenging to bike east and west. Several neighborhoods in Near Northwest Houston don’t connect with trails or bike lanes. 

The city has taken significant strides to improve bicycling in the past few years, earning Houston a bronze-level Bicycle Friendly Community award from the League of American Bicyclists in 2013.

CONTACT CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS TO ADVOCATE FOR BIKE PATHS IN YOUR AREA

For Houstonians who want more opportunities for safer bicycling -- along with more transportation choices -- now is the time to contact your city council member. Council members representing Near Northwest Houston and Super Neighborhood 12 include Brenda Stardig for District A, Ellen Cohen, District C, and all five at-large council members, Mike Knox (Pos. 1), David Robinson (Pos. 2), Michael Kubosh (Pos. 3), Amanda Edwards (Pos. 4) and Jack Christie (Pos. 5).

Review an executive summary of the plan and an interactive map of trails and bike lanes here. You can advocate for specific trails and bike paths in your area.

The Houston Bike Plan is supported by 4,000 public comments, 97 percent of which were positive, according to Bike Houston, the city’s only non-profit bicycle advocacy group, one that played a key role in community outreach for the plan.

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