Juanita neighbors building momentum for local improvements

I’m certainly not a meeting junkie. But last night’s first general meeting of the new Juanita Neighborhood Association (JNA) sure got me excited. Others were, too.

About 50 residents from both north and south Juanita turned out for last night’s meeting. One attendee said this was her first neighborhood meeting in 17 years. Others were “old-timers” who had been involved in the previous neighborhood association. Some are currently active in their areas, cleaning up streets, pulling weeds, and otherwise spiffing things up. Others came to hear the latest scoop about Juanita Beach Park, recently reopen after construction.

All in all, it was 1 ½ hours chock full of information, brainstorming, questions and answers, and good old neighborhood networking. Oh, and cookies. But best of all, the majority of attendees approved a slate of projects valued at nearly $3,800 for submission to the city’s neighborhood grant funding program. I was most excited to see the interest in improving Edith Moulton Park, a tarnished jewel within the new city limits. A proposal to replace a roof on a shelter at the park and make other improvements, valued at $1,500, is the highest ticket project proposed.

Now that we’ve got the community’s support, we’ll ask the city for approval on the grants. We want to have volunteers ready to go once we have the city’s okay. Each grant project needs to be matched by volunteer hours. It was gratifying that 25 of 50 attendees last night signed up to volunteer, but even more will be needed.

Here’s the list of projects. If you’re interested in volunteering for these projects, or in helping the neighborhood association in any way (baking cookies for meetings and events, putting up signs for meetings, etc.), please contact Mary Pong Dunphy at mary.dunphy08@gmail.com.

1. Edith Moulton Park Improvements

 

Replace the damaged roof on the shelter near the grass field. Repair or replace the picnic table and stain the shelter. Power wash the entire area.

 

2. Juanita Beach Historical Sign

 

Work with Kirkland Heritage Society to display the history of the beach. Continue fund raising for additional signs.

 

3. “Life is a Beach” Community Picnic

 

This would be a community gathering at Juanita Beach Park to include family events, entertainment, and food, in the summer of 2012.

 

4. CERT/Community Emergency Response Team

 

CERTs are trained to help residents after a disaster. The grant would help defray costs for emergency response training for residents in 2012.

 

5. Communications/Operations

 

Provides funds for signs, meetings, supplies, web hosting, etc. for the Juanita Neighborhood Association.

 

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Barbara Ramey is a mother, wife, professional communicator and resident of the Juanita area of Kirkland since 1992. She serves on the board of the new Juanita Neighborhood Association and is a member of the Kirkland Park Board. The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Park Board, the City of Kirkland or the Juanita Neighborhood Association. Barbara can be reached at bramey1@comcast.net.