We are at the end of 2017, another year has almost passed. We have seen so many changes occur in our world and in our Neighborhood as well. Some changes have been positive, and some have been negative. We have seen some old businesses close on Chicago Avenue, and we’ve seen some new businesses open in their place. We have a new bakery on 46th and Bloomington, too.
We’ve seen longtime business owner, Joe Minjares, who will be closing his Pepitos restaurant. Joe has been very active in our community through the years. He has been very sick of late, and we want Joe to know that we’re thinking about him.
This past November, Hale and Field School taught us in the community all about the history of our neighborhood. The young people did a lot of research about our community and educated both themselves and us, about how our neighborhoods were once segregated by design, and what it took to unify and desegregate our schools and neighborhoods.
We’ve talked about crime in our community, and how we can do something about it. FRN you have talked about forming walking groups and walking together, with the strength of unity, looking out for each other.
This November, we voted for a lot of local elected positions that have a direct impact on our community. This new year, we will have two new City Council Members: Andrea Jenkins and Jeremy Schroeder. We are looking forward to working with both of them and having them to hear our concerns for our communities and working on our behalf. They will be replacing our previous Council Members, Elizabeth Glidden, and John Quincy, who gave so much of themselves to preserve and improve our communities. To them, we give our appreciation.
FRN, we have work ahead of as we begin the New Year 2018. How do we work with our local schools to help keep our kids engaged and wanting to stay in school? What is it that we can do to assist those families who need help, in fixing their homes and properties up, when they’ve fallen into worsening disrepair? When do we start the walking groups in our neighborhoods? Who will help organize these group(s)? How do we make sure we are including all our new businesses, in our conversation about the commercial plans and hopes of our community? We need to work with McRae Park on community building, in planning activities for our young people and teenagers. We have our newsletter publication, Close to Home, and we need people to continue to write articles for the paper. We have a great production team for the newsletter, who have won several awards and recognition for being an outstanding newsletter. Let’s continue to share our enthusiasm and talents to maintain this asset.
FRN I’m up to the challenge for 2018 and I need your help to make these things happen. Please consider joining one of our committees that interest you, and making 2018 the best for FRN.
Willie Bridges, FRNNG President
If you have new neighbors, please introduce yourself and welcome them to the neighborhood. Be safe and be aware of your surroundings: always lock your car doors, garage doors, and house doors. If you have an elderly person living next door to you, check up on them periodically, to make sure that they’re OK. Practice the Golden Rule.
I wish the Best for you this coming Year 2018, FRN,