We are very excited to announce that we will begin 2017 with a subdivision meeting.
Location: Jefferson Middle School cafeteria
Date: February 9, 2017
Now we know what you're thinking. Subdivision meeting. Right in the middle of dinner. After I worked all day and I'm tired. Thanks very much but I have a date with Fuzzy's Tacos and Netflix. Well just you wait a minute! There are a lot of exciting things happening in our cozy little neighborhood and we need your help.
First and foremost, we are on the cusp of Spring. I know. It doesn't feel that way. What with all the ice storms and sub-freezing weather, but we promise it's coming. And with warmer weather just around the corner, we anticipate the joyous voices of our children running down the street to one of our local parks.
Now maybe you are new to the neighborhood, and if this is your first letter, let us be the first to welcome you. We are so glad you chose to live in one of the oldest and most prestigious communities in St. Charles. With that in mind, we are very proud of this little community and want very much for every resident to have a positive experience at our local parks. Whether you live close to Orton Park, Ipswich Park, Lyme Park, or Fleet Park, we know you want to talk about how best to improve each resident's experience. We would love your input on how best to make these common areas shine.
To be candid, we have been trying to clear some badly overgrown brush from the common grounds for some time. Invasive honeysuckle is painstaking to remove and last year we came across some very large items that had been dumped in areas that kept us from gaining access in order to clear them. Of course, with the amount of common grounds and parks available to us in our subdivision, having the monies to dispose of and clear is always challenging. So we really need your help! Please come to the meeting with some ideas on how best to maintain these precious resources, and, on the flip side, we would appreciate your eyes and ears. If you see illegal dumping, please report it to us or it puts the whole subdivision on the hook for the cost of the removal.
With that in mind (although we hesitate to mention it) we do have some delinquencies in collections of the $50 annual assessment fee. We wonder if giving clarity into what exactly this money provides for would be helpful to the many residents reading this letter. In case you were not aware, there are very nice explanations of things like the assessment on our website.
As we approach the end of the Phase One collection period, we will enter Phase Two after the due date of 2017 assessments. We sincerely appreciate your help in maintaining the beauty and integrity of our neighborhood.
We are very excited to announce that the trustees have recently begun to participate in the Nextdoor website at stcharleshills.nextdoor.com. Nextdoor is a social media website designed specifically for neighborhoods. If you have not already joined, we encourage you to participate. Many of our neighbors are able to more frequently communicate via this forum. Search for "St. Charles Hills". Registration is completely free. You will find everything from notification of local services available to community-wide events, and help locating missing pets. We noticed this past summer that many neighbors were able to connect via this venue and spread the word about garage sales and lucky leprechauns. And since you don't want to miss a change to catch one of those little green guys and get your pot of gold, hop on over to Nextdoor and connect.
And since leprechauns are a menace to some (not unlike garden gnomes), we are very excited to mention that we have invited St. Charles County Animal Control to participate in our subdivision meeting. They will be on hand to answer questions about how they handle strays and manage the adoption process for unclaimed pets. We are grateful for their time and hope you will be there to encourage them in the work they do every day to support our neighborhood.
Have you taken a walk down your street recently? You may have noticed a strange and spiney fruit on the ground. You may have even stepped on it, cried out in pain, and twisted your ankle. While you lay on the ground howling in pain and frustration (or is that just us?), you cursed the tree from which it fell. I'm sorry to report that you have encountered a member of the Hamamelidaceae family, otherwise known as the Sweetgum Maple. A number of these trees were planted at the inception of our neighborhood due to their ability to grow quickly and because of their lovely Fall foliage. However, their pesky fruit makes Fall and Winter somewhat challenging to the untrained ankle. One must decide; should I shovel the driveway or rake gumballs? Decisions, decisions! We would like to encourage all of our friends and neighbors to properly dispose of these fruits and thereby save the feet, ankles and ears (from abominable curses) of your neighbors.
This year we will host our bi-annual garage sales on May 13th and October 14th. We want to remind everyone to remove your advertisements following the end of your sale. Also of note, Hanover Manor will remove your signs from Penbrooke and Zumbehl as soon as they are noticed by the subdivision owners.
Finally, we have saved the very best announcement for last: We have an opening for a new subdivision trustee. If you love your neighbors, want to foster community, and like a good challenge, please submit your interest via the website at www.saintcharleshills.org/contacttrustees.htm. The only condition to apply is that one must be a homeowner living in the subdivision and be current on your assessment.
Because we hope to have as many residents attend the subdivision meeting as possible, a very generous neighbor has offered to provide homemade cookies and beverages. She promises they are awesome! For those who have never attended a meeting, please come and join in the fun. If you have attended before but it has been a long time, we encourage you to attend and bring your tenured experience to inform the rest of us. We would really love to hear your stories about what is happening around town and are hopeful this meeting will begin a fresh cadence of managing the care of our beloved subdivision.
Until next time, may your days be filled with sunshine, your nights be filled with moonbeams, and your heart be as full as the belly of a squirrel who robbed all the seed out of the birdfeeder.
Disclaimer: As you seek to contact us, please keep in mind that we are a small-but-mighty band of volunteers who love our community and seek to protect, maintain and promote it. We work with you and for you for the good of those who live in or own property in the St. Charles Hills Subdivision.