Thursday, November 15, 2007

$250,000 Safe Routes to School Grant

11/15/07--The City of Bloomington received a $250,000 grant to build a sidewalk along the west side of Henderson St., from Allen St. to Hillside Dr. and the crossing to Templeton School. The grant comes from Safe Routes to School, a new program in the federal transportation bill, SAFETEA –LU. The goal of the program is to reverse the 30 year decline in the numbers of children walking to school and reintroduce opportunities for regular physical activity by improving conditions for bicycling and walking to school.

Edgewood High School in Elletsville also received a $250,000 grant. The combined value of the two grants in Monroe County equals 25% of the total awarded statewide—a showing that Justin Wykoff, Engineering Services Manager with the City of Bloomington, describes as “spectacular.”

Wykoff thanked the neighborhood association, parents, and school officials for their hard work, which contributed to the success of the Safe Routes application. The grant will supply two-thirds of the funding needed to complete the Henderson St. sidewalk project. An application is in process for a Community Development Block Grant to bring in the remaining funding.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Welcome, New Neighbors!

Bryan Park area residents welcome new blood to the neighborhood each fall and throughout the year. If you are new to Bloomington, you are probably still learning about the City services and ordnances. Here’s a little ‘cheat sheet.’

Quiet times. Sleeping hours are protected by limits on noise sources:

· 11:00 pm - 6:00 am for movable source noise (car radio, boombox, etc.)

· 9:00 pm - 7:00 am for fixed source noise (power tools or lawn mowers, etc.)

The City considers noise “excessive is if it can be heard in the public right-of-way or in another person's home.”

Parking is permitted on paved or gravel surfaces only, not in yards.

Snow removal. Property owners must clear ice and snow from sidewalks abutting their property within 24 hours. BPNA volunteers help neighbors with health problems clear their walks and avoid fines. Contact BPNA president Jan Sorby at to get on the list.

Recycling. Every two weeks the recycling truck collects:

  • Plastic containers coded #1 through #7 (it’s stamped on the bottom of the item) and clean plastic grocery bags
  • Clean dry paper, shredded and bagged paper, flattened cardboard and paper board boxes
  • Metal cans and glass containers.

Please sort recyclables into two categories: paper and everything else. To check the collection date or request a red recycling bin, call the Sanitation Department at 349.3443.

Dog don’t. You’ve probably noticed the doggy waste bags dispensed from plastic milk bottles around the neighborhood. Liz Brown gets the “good neighbor” award for putting them up, but she needs an endless supply of plastic bags. Feel free to fill the dispensers yourself or leave bags in the bin on Liz’s porch at 413 E. Davis.

Neighborhood Watch provides both an 'extra eyes and ears' approach to crime prevention and a proactive approach to improving quality of life in the neighborhood. Dick Mitchell acts as liaison to the police or other city offices, without involving you. Call him at 339-5096 or email

From BPNA Neighborhood News, October 2007

Neighborly Compassion, by Mary Lou Mitchell

Charles and Olive Scamihorn have lived on Grimes Lane since August 17, 1956, and attended the Free Methodist Church ever since. Charles is a WW II and Korean War veteran who served in the Navy in both the Pacific and Atlantic fleet, in England, Normandy, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. He and Olive were married July 28, 1946.

The last of August Charles took Olive to the beauty shop. Not feeling well, he asked a friend if she would bring Olive home. Charles drove himself home and after he got out of the car, he dropped his house key. When he bent over to pick it up, he fell – half on the sidewalk and half in the street. Unable to get up, he lay there.

Charles heard the screech of air brakes close to him. A semi driver jumped out of his truck and lifted Charles up. The driver wouldn’t leave until he had helped Charles into the house, helped him to get undressed and into bed. Charles thanked him over and over. When Charles asked what he owed him, the semi driver pointed to the cap Charles always wears—a WW II & Korean War cap with the five battle stars that he had earned. “You’ve paid already,” the driver said. “It’s a privilege to help an old soldier.”

Charles knows the man only as Roscoe, and that’s all he knows about him. Roscoe ignored all the cars honking outside the door because his semi was sitting in the street for as long as it took to help Charles, then he left.

When Charles and Olive moved here they were the youngest couple in the neighborhood. Now they are one of the oldest ones. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if more people were as compassionate as Roscoe was? What might have happened if he had not stopped?

If you have any human interest stories to share, please e-mail me at

From the BPNA Neighborhood News, published October 2007

Dancing in the Street - BPNA Block Party

Great music turns a picnic into a party. Specifically, the third annual BPNA Block Party got rocking when Craig Brenner and Friends—Craig on piano, Lori Wallace on vocals and percussion, Gordon Bonham on guitar and vocals, and Kenny Aronoff on drums— set up on the 1000 block of South Dunn amid the scent of hamburgers and potluck offerings on Friday, August 24.

About 200 people came to eat, chat, listen, and dance with their neighbors. Craig’s signature mix of jazz, blues, boogie woogie, and New Orleans R & B got adults and children alike up and moving.

Jan Sorby, president of the Bryan Park Neighborhood Association, said, “Craig Brenner and Friends’ music really makes our picnic an Event. We are very lucky to have talented giving people like Craig and all the band members who virtually donate their time to our annual picnic. It is this kind of personal contribution that makes the Bryan Park a special place to live.”

Craig Brenner added, “It was a reunion of sorts for three of us - Gordon Bonham, Kenny Aronoff and I were all in the Ragin' Texans in the late 1980's, and Kenny left when John Mellencamp's Scarecrow Tour hit the road and it took him away. Aronoff still lives in Bloomington and he jumped at the opportunity to play.”

Sorby said, “To say it was a successful community building experience would be an understatement. Our picnics bring together long-time and new residents in a positive pleasurable manner. Sharing time together at this annual event is the first step to knowing, enjoying and respecting each other’s life-style and privacy.”

Jon Lawrence, the event organizer, said, “Each year more and more people volunteer to help. It’s so wonderful to see people take ownership of the party and really of the neighborhood.”

If you missed the party, you can still hear the music. Look for upcoming dates on

From BPNA Neighborhood News, published October 2007

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Ice Cream Social

Hey Everyone,

Hey, there's free ice cream tomorrow evening. BPNA and Elm Heights didn't really "sponser" this but rather are invited to participate by eating ice cream and/or dipping ice cream.

Here's the (ha ha) scoop:
7-8 pm, Woodlawn shelter, at Bryan Park. It is sponsored by the Asset Building Coalition of Monroe County (ABCMC). They are part of the county criminal system. ABCMC does preventive work for drug and alcohol abuse.
If you would like to volunteer to scoop ice cream, e-mail: Susan Forney at or call her at 349-2587.

It's supposed to be in the 90 tomorrow, a little ice cream after dinner might be nice.

Jan Sorby

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Speed Monitoring Protects Templeton Students

Safer routes for children walking to Templeton Elementary School have topped the BPNA's agenda for years. The need was highlighted in the 2006 Neighborhood Walks with the Mayor and members of the City Council. One result of this effort is the new speed monitoring system installed in February 2007. At Grant & Hillside and at Woodlawn & Hillside, speed limit signs and monitors with built-in radar warn drivers to slow down as they approach the school crosswalks.

BPNA president Jan Sorby says, "A high-five to everyone who has worked on getting the caution signs on Hillside by Templeton for the past 7 years. It took a long time but was really well worth the work." Sorby gave special thanks to Don Porter, traffic control manager with the city of Bloomington, Justin Wycoff, of the Board of Public Works, and Mayor Mark Kruzan.

(photo source: The Herald-Times)

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Davis Street Garden Guidelines

The Davis Street Garden is located on the north side of Davis Street between Grant and Palmer. The purpose of the Garden is first to beautify the neighborhood, and second to provide an opportunity for residents of the Bryan Park Neighborhood to experience gardening. It is divided into 25 allotments of 10 feet each as follows: sunny: lots #1-5, semi shade: lots #6-10,& 25, shady: lots #11-24. The allotments are available for cultivation on a first come first served basis to members of the Bryan Park Neighborhood Association, who help with communal gardening maintenance tasks, and who comply with the guidelines below. The allotments may be kept for a period of 3 calendar years. At the end of this time the allotment will be made available to the next neighbor on the list. At such time the gardener may re-enter their name on the wait list. A gardener may also choose to surrender their allotment ahead of schedule, or allow it to lapse into circulation due to non-maintenance. Requests for use should be made to the Garden Coordinator.

Guidelines for Maintenance
  1. The Davis Street Garden Guidelines may be further restricted by the guidelines specified in the City of Bloomington Unified Development Ordinance.
  2. A gardener may cultivate any plant that can be legally cultivated in the state of Indiana, and that has not been defined as an invasive species, or otherwise restricted by the UDO. A list of restricted plants may be found at chapter 20.05.058, Exhibit LA-B: Invasive Species, Species with Poor Characteristics, and Noxious or Detrimental Plants, at:
  3. Allotments must be kept mulched and weeded, and otherwise attractively maintained.
  4. The effect of overspray, or any other form of weed and insect suppression must be restricted to the gardener's allotment only.
  5. It is the responsibility of the gardener to bring her/his own water for irrigation.
  6. Plants may not create shade in other allotments, or obstruct sight lines needed by traffic or pedestrians. Plants in allotments 1-4 may not exceed 48".
  7. Gardeners under the age of 15 must be supervised by a parent, or guardian.
  8. Please bring suggestions for improvement, questions, and concerns about use to the Garden Coordinator (Ria Collee, 336-2512, or or BPNA President (Mary Miller,

rev. Jan. 27, 2010

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Garden Plots Now Available to Members

So many plants, too little garden space?

BPNA members can solve this perennial gardener’s dilemma by signing up for a free plot in the Davis Street Garden. The garden consists of 25 plots of land, each 10 feet square, along the north side of Davis St. between Grant and Palmer.

Sunny, shady and in-between plots are available. Contact Ria Collee, the Garden Coordinator, at 336-2512 or mcollee@ Last year volunteers applied a heavy layer of mulch to suppress the former overgrowth and give our community gardeners rich soil and a clean start. What you do with your plot is up to you, within Guidelines designed to benefit all users.