NMCA Newsletter (08/14)


School Starts Soon!

August 19 is the first day of school here in Greenville.  For a copy of the calendar of important dates, holidays, etc. for the 2014-15 school year just click here.  And watch out for walkers and bikers on your morning and afternoon commutes.  Be safe!

Welcome to NMCA’s newest Business Member

Needle Tree LogoThe Needle Tree, established in 1992, offers its patrons the finest in knitting and needlepoint supplies.  The shop specializes in hand-painted needlepoint canvases and high-end yarns.  Their Craftsman –style bungalow is located on the corner of Church Street and Tindal Avenue.  The owners, Jan Ryan and her daughter KT Ryan (a North Main resident and NMCA member) like to have fun and do their best to make sure those around them have fun.  If you want a laugh, go to their “Meet the Staff” page at their website and learn about Homer, Lola, Houdini and Hou Done It (aka Butler).  You couldn’t ask for a friendlier or furrier staff!  They are open TUES – FRI: 10AM-5PM SAT 10AM-3PM.  You can also reach them at 864.235.6060 or kt@theneedletree.com

Call for Nominations – 2015 NMCA Board

This is the first call for nominations for the 2015 NMCA Board of Directors.  All officers must reside within the geographical boundaries of the NMCA for the entire period they hold office, Jan. 1 – Dec. 31, 2015.  All officers must be 18 years or older.  The President and Vice President may serve 2 consecutive terms and may then run for any office other than the one currently held.  The Treasurer, Recording Secretary and Membership Secretary will be able to succeed her or himself as elected by the members.   Any member may nominate someone for office.  The nomination must be submitted no later than November 1.  You may email the nomination to pgilreath@aol.com or mail to PO Box 571, Greenville, SC  29602.  The person nominated must agree to serve if elected and a brief statement of their qualifications and past contributions would be helpful.  Election ballots will be emailed or mailed to all members in late November.

 City Council Meeting Update on Infill Ordinance

NMCA President Bob Bainbridge attended the Council second hearing on the Infill Ordinance and was recognized for the work he did on the infill committee.  Another member spoke in general favor of the ordinance, except for the fact that the tree portion is very weak.    Mr. Dey, chairman of the Greenville Homebuilders Association, spoke in favor, though he said he knew that it was not what everyone wanted.  Council members all made comments.   Most, including Mayor White, were aware that not everything had been addressed.  Council Member Jill Littlejohn said they were doing something similar for Special Emphasis Neighborhoods (low income areas).  Mayor White noted the need for something to control massing, so new houses didn’t loom over existing houses with only a 5 foot setback.  There was discussion about revisiting the ordinance in 6- 9 months, but there was no commitment.  The ordinance passed unanimously.

North Main Road Diet Meeting

There was a great turnout for the road diet meeting Tuesday night.  Since it was first discussed in 2007, speeding, accidents and fatalities have increased.  The number of citations have almost doubled this year compared to last year, mostly speeding.  The purpose of this plan is primarily to make it safer.  First of all…this is NOT a sidewalk project.  Currently there are no funds, plus since it’s a SCDOT maintained road, they have to agree to any changes.  The existing four 10-foot lanes will be reduced to two 11-foot lanes.  They will stripe a wider median for left turns and stripe a 4 foot bike lane each direction.  There will be an additional 2-foot auxiliary lane between the bike land and curb for use for trash and debris  pickup, parking for parties, etc. (which needs to be coordindated with the City), etc.  It will also give more room for sidewalks in the future.  Some benefits cited included: 1) When making a left turn off a side road, you will only have to cross one lane, plus you will have better sight distance. 2) Crosswalks for those walking or biking will also be safer with fewer lanes to cross.  Striping will also be done for crosswalks.

  • Studies have shown there are approximately 6500 vehicles per day on North Main which is below capacity for what it was designed for.  The rating of road will not change (still B+ and A to F scale).  Before restriping is done, they will repair the roads as much as possible.  There are no funds at present to completely repave. (It’s one of the things on the list for the sales tax referendum).  Another issue to be addressed in the future is the lack of sidewalks from Hillcrest to Avondale – the most dangerous section of North Main. There will be no change to the dogwoods in the medians.  This is considered a priority by the city and the residents.  The plan is to finalize designs throughout August, get bids in October and they anticipate completion by the holidays.
  • There were many comments from the audience which we will try to summarize here:
  • One of the main issues brought up by both those in favor and against was the process.  Many were upset that this project seems to be set without any meetings to ask for public input.  There was no referendum or chance to comment before it was a ‘done deal’.  Staff responded that the project went through the capital improvement projects process.  (Ed. This has been a continuing complaint of many residents and goes back to transparency in government…something that needs to be improved in Greenville.)
  • Most of the audience was in favor (especially those who live ON North Main).  They are hoping for slower traffic and like having the auxiliary shoulder.
  • Those opposed to the project brought up the continued comparison by city to the success of E. North Street re-striping, noting that E. North Street is not like North Main.  The police representative indicated there is less police presence on E. North St now (even in school zones) because there is less speeding and they have found that traffic has increased and the fear that drivers would use secondary residential roads to avoid it have been unfounded.
  • It was mentioned that the bike lane being only 4 feet wide is not wide enough and only symbolic, and many would still use Summit, so why even do the striping for bike lanes.  There needs to be very obvious striping and signage to indicate the purposes of the lanes.
  • One resident asked about stop signs or red lights. Staff responded that they have to follow guidelines and there is not enough volume to warrant them for traffic calming.  The red light at Hillcrest was installed because of the lack of visibility of traffic coming up both hills.  In spite of this, this area still has the most accidents as people come flying over the hill.  One suggestion by a resident which seemed favorably received by staff was the possibility of traffic circles at East and West Avondale intersections with Main.
  • The truck traffic and height of trucks was an issue.  Thru truck traffic is banned but they are allowed to come into work areas (the infill projects are why we are seeing more in the last year or so).  As for truck height and trees, with the one lane more centered, this will reduce the trucks hitting either dogwoods or the trees on the outside of the road.
  • One resident complained that the police don’t do enough to enforce laws for bicyclists; thus, the bike lanes will not solve the problem entirely.  It was suggested that cameras placed in strategic locations along North Main could help solve the speeding problem.

The group then dispersed to view the diagrams on display.  A typical diagram is shown below.



Stone Avenue Development Update

Some members have asked what ever happened with the development on the corner of North Main and Stone Avenue.  According to Amy Doyle, the East Park sewer work is on schedule as planned.  The improvements to the East Park sewer area will accommodate all future development including the new proposed hotel at North Main and Elford, North Main @Stone; the “Baby Bilo” and Green Plaza. The plan for North Main at Stone is moving along.  The architect and developer are working on construction drawings and proceeding on time.  They will likely submit permits mid-September as planned.  They plan to break ground in October.  They will announce the retail tenants which she assures us we will be very happy with.  They are also planning on buying additional property nearby for development.  More to come.


Property Crime Data Available Online

Just a reminder…there is a wealth of information at the Greenville Police Department Website.  You can access RAIDS online, a free public crime map developed by BAIR Analytics. The data is supplied by the Greenville Police Department. Using a web site, citizens can easily search for information on auto breakings, auto thefts and burglaries.  Citizens or neighborhood watch groups can search for crimes within a particular radius of a certain location. Data is updated every 72 hours.  Just click on the link above and enter your address and city.  You can select which data you want and a range of dates.  Zoom in and you can see which type crime it is based on the icon (i.e. house, car, etc.)  Click on the icon and you’ll see the street name, the date and time and what type of crime has been committed near you.  You can also search for sexual predators in your neighborhood and find where those published offenders live.

Want to report animal abuse?  An email address has been setup for the public to contact animal control about any issue of concern. This email address does not replace calling the dispatch center for service; instead it adds another means of communication. For incidents requiring immediate attention, please continue to call 864-271-5333. The email address is animalcontrol@greenvillesc.gov.

Want to register with the Police Emergency Alert System?  To aid in situations where public safety may be threatened in a particular area, the Police Department utilizes a map-based computer program to quickly disseminate information to residents within an identified geographic area.  Residents are encouraged to login to the Emergency Notification Portal at https://greenvillepd.onthealert.com and enter their information confidentially. (Ed. Note:  Please be aware that if you do register, you may receive calls in the middle of the night.  That was the case with the most recent storm on August 9/10.  Residents received calls at midnight about flooding, road closures, etc.)


Neighborhood Watch Information

In the last couple of weeks we’ve sent out information on a number of break-ins and thefts. We summarize here for those who missed them:  *Break–ins on W. Mountainview and Montclair.  At Mountainview, a window at the back of the house was forced open and valuables were stolen. The responding officer felt this was a more professional criminal as they wore gloves & did not ransack the home but took their time and only took what was truly valuable.  *Window broken on car in neighborhood driveway.  * A neighbor witnessed what is assumed to be the thieves around 11am on the 31st. She noticed a woman walking down the driveway with a brown bag.  She was picked up by a man in a black 4 door sedan with Florida plates.

On another note :  We have received  questions about people going through trash and taking whole bags of trash.  Fearing identity theft , residents have asked what could be done…possibly putting their trash cans in the edge of their yard or driveway.  After checking with Courtney Palmer, she informs us that “Solid Waste stated that all receptacles must be on the City’s right of way in order for them to pick up the trash and recycle.” She advises people to “keep calling and having officers respond. The officers should at least be able to approach the woman and find out who she is (do a Field Interview) and that way she will hopefully get the message that she is being watched when she is in the N Main neighborhood.” And don’t put anything with important info in your trash. (One neighbor suggested NEVER put ANYTHING with your name or address in trash or recycling, even empty prescription bottles.  They keep a box (or 2) near the door and all items with personal information, including junk mail, go there until there is a paper shredding event.)

(Ed. The city usually has a shredding event in September.  We’ll let you know as soon as we learn the date.)

This just reinforces the need for all of us to be our own “neighborhood watch” group and keep an eye on the property of neighbors, especially those who are out of town.

 Reminder – ACS Free Cat Neuter/Spay for 29609 Zip code 

kittenNO STRINGS ATTACHED!  FREE means FREE for residents in the 29609 zip code who need to have their pet cats and kittens spayed or neutered.  Thanks to a targeted grant from PetSmart Charities, Greenville County Animal Care on Furman Hall Road in Cherrydale is offering FREE spays and neuters for pet cats and kittens for residents in the 29609 zip code through 2015.   This was done because of the staggering number of cats surrendered to the shelter or found stray there. Residents of the 29609 zip code should contact (864) 467-SPAY to make appointments to have their cats or kittens spayed or neutered at no charge.  You will need to bring in proof that you reside in the 29609 zip code.

The Greenville Humane Societyis running a special on adoptions.  Adult dogs are $49, puppies are $95, adult cats are $20 and kittens are $49.  All animals are neutered and up to date on shots, etc.  (Prices subject to change.)

 Classroom Programs on Animal Care

There is little that is more rewarding than to speak with students about responsible care for and kindness to animals.  This does more than just help animals; it teaches compassion to all. Students learn responsibility that will help them in all areas of their lives.  Did you know that both the Humane Society and Animal Care Services offer speakers on a variety of topics, tailored to the age range and class size?  Just contact them for more information:  ACS – Community Relations Coordinator at 864-467-3986 or email petpr@greenvillecounty.org.

For the Humane Society – To set up a classroom presentation, a service learning opportunity, or a shelter tour, contact Paula Church or call 242-3626.

Fall Yard Sale at the Soda Shop

Giving you an advance notice that this year’s yard sale at the Northgate Soda Shop will be held Saturday, October 25.  So as you start fall cleaning, don’t forget to save items for the sale.  Space is free.  More details to come.

Pet CPR Class a Success

Pet CPR1For those not able to attend, we had a very successful pet first aid/CPR class last month.  Over 20 residents received valuable information from Dr. Cynthia Wheat about what to do in pet CPR2emergencies.   The ‘demonstration dog’ was VERY cooperative.  If there is interest we will have another class in the future.  We are also considering another Human CPR class, possibly on a Saturday for those who have long weekday work schedules.  We have had one request.  If anyone else is interested, please email pgilreath@aol.com.


Volunteers Needed for Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels of Greenville needs volunteers. It takes one hour just one time per month to make a difference for our neighbors. They host volunteer orientation every Thursday morning at M on W9:30 a.m. at their Oregon Street office or you can email jaccetta@mowgvl.org for more information!  They need volunteers not only to pick up and deliver meals, but also to sort and package.  Click here to see our open routes as of Thursday, July 17th! Call 864.233.6565 if you are interested in adopting one of them.

 Weather Tidbits

According to climate data, the average maximum temperature for Greenville in August is 87°F, the average low is 67.7°F and the average precipitation is 4.21”.  We obviously have already passed that mark last week.  I recorded almost 5 inches at my house.  The record maximum temperature for the period 1962-2006 was 103°F on August 22, 1983.  The record minimum was 52°F on August 29, 1968.  Record high rainfall was in 1995 with 17.37” with minimum precipitation of 0.79” in 1999.  The highest daily rainfall for this area was a reported 11.50 inches on July 12, 1949 at Caesars Head.    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/ncdc.html ball field

Not only did the rain cause havoc all over town, it also caused damage to the North Main Rotary Park.  In the attached photo you can see how high the water was by the debris on the ball field fence.  Thanks to JoAnne Conner, Park Committee Chair, for checking it out and sending us the photo.  The storm also blew the manhole cover off the drain on the hill by Ashley, washed dirt onto the ball field, and washed gravel into the rain garden.


August Yard and Garden Update

Have you noticed that ever so slight feel of fall in the air?  Even though it’s been cooler lately, summer is not over yet!  But some plants are already starting to lose that bright green hue and looking a little duller in color.  Your fescue lawn may a little thin (after all, it’s a cool season grass).  Annuals are starting to fade.  The record-setting rain on the 9th really beat down a lot of plants and washed mulch which means more work before fall. What should you be paying attention to now?

tomato crackingIf you have vegetables, you may see splitting and/or rain check (cracks around the stem end) due to the recent rainfall.  Another problem that was caused by the excess moisture but may not show up untilBER later is blossom end rot…seen on both tomatoes and peppers.

This is a good month to apply a complete fertilizer to warm season lawns (centipede, zoysia, Bermuda, St. Augustine).  It’s also a great time to aerate cool season lawns such as fescue.

goldfinchSummer perennials and annuals are starting to fade, but don’t be too quick to remove those seed heads.  I’ve had goldfinches on my Echinacea, eating the seed from fading blooms and seed heads.  I’ve also heard of goldfinches dining on the seed of spent flowers on native salvia.  This is an important source of food for birds in the fall and winter.

If you plan to plant trees or shrubs, start planning now.  Late fall and winter are the best times to plant.  If you found you put a shrub in the wrong spot, fall and winter is the best time to move it.  For large shrubs, consider slowly root pruning starting in October to reduce transplant shock when it’s moved.

You’re also probably seeing more butterflies in your garden lately.  Of the three butterfly periods each year, late summer to fall is the most active.  That’s why it’s important to plan and have some late blooming butterflybutterfly attracting plants in your garden.

And don’t forget to mark your calendar now for the Upstate Native Plant Society Plant Sale on October 25.  Start planning where to plant those new plants!


 Monthly Trivia

In Maine the lobster is legendary; in Texas, it’s oil.  But did you know that the biggest export from New York is diamonds?  Can you guess what the biggest export in South Carolina is?  No, it’s not an agricultural product as many might think.  Not too surprising, it’s automobile parts.  For a list of the major exports from each state go to this website.

Flash From the Past

 Do you recognize these photos….where they were taken and the approximate date?

old photo1old photo2 



City Council Formal Meeting and Work Session schedules can be found at http://www.greenvillesc.gov/city_government/meet.asp

The Hughes Main Library has numerous programs for adults and children.  Check out their August Calendar.

Don’t forget about a great local resource for family activities.  Macaroni Kid lists all kinds of local activities for kids and families.

The city also has a website listing Family Things to Do and See.  According to this website, The Carillon, located at RiverPlace, has 25 bells floating within a simple structure of three painted steel columns, the tallest of which is 54 feet. At the foot of the tower is a continuously flowing water feature. The open structure of the bell tower preserves the direct view through the RiverPlace courtyard to the river and to the city beyond.  Check the website for the hours the carillon chimes.

For other events in this area bookmark Go-greenevents  for a listing of various events with registration, etc., handled online to save needless waste of paper.  

There’s lots to do in August and September through Greenville County Parks and Rec.  Check out their website for a list of activities.

August – The Swamp Rabbit Café and Grocery will host music and movement classes, called The Learning Groove, for families on Fridays this August. Parents and their young children are invited to the class on August 15, 22, and 29 from 11:00-11:45 am. Cost is $15 per family per class. Sign up at www.swamprabbitcafe.com or in the café.  The Swamp Rabbit Café and Grocery is located at 205 Cedar Lane Road in Greenville.  For more information about The Learning Groove, contact Amber Galea at 864-326-7510.

The Swamp Rabbit Café and Grocery now offers online ordering through Square Pick-up. Café orders placed online can be picked up in the store 15 minutes later. To view the menu of items available for order, visit https://squareup.com/market/swamp-rabbit-cafe-and-grocery. You can even order from your phone with the app Square Order!

CT Check out upcoming events at the Community Tap.  The Community Tap now has a private event room in their new space at 217 Wade Hampton Blvd. The space seats up to 30 or holds up to 40 people reception style. Email anna@thecommunitytap.com for more information on rental!  Check out their food truck and event calendar here.

August 15 – Karaoke with BJ the DJ from 8 pm – 1 am.  Northgate Soda Shop. Food served until 9 pm.

August 15-17The Really Good, Really Big, Really Cheap Book Sale.  McAlister Square.  Friday, August 15 Preview Party 5:30-8:00, $35 person/$60 couple, RSVP Required.  Saturday, August 16, Book Sale 8:30-4:00 – Free Entry, 7:30-8:30 $10 Early Bird Entry.  Sunday, August 17 Clearance Bag Sale 1:00-4:00 – Free entry, fill a bag for $10.  Benefits the Greenville Literacy Society. (They accept donations of books all year)

August 16Trains Day. 10am – 4pm at the Hughes Library, meeting room C.  See working model trains and drive one yourself. See HO scale model trains running on a large 16’x34′ layout featuring many scenes typical of the Upstate. Take a turn driving Thomas the Tank Engine on a smaller layout. Call 527-9258 for more information.

August 23 – Pints for Pups. The Greenville Growler Station is hosting Pints for Pups to raise money for the Greenville Humane Society. Fifteen percent of all proceeds from beer and food sales will go to the GHS. Thoroughfare Food Truck will be serving food and dogs are welcome to the event. The Barkery Bistro will also be serving up their Bowser Beer, beer for dogs.

August 24 – Papa John’s presents the Third Annual 2013 Mutt Strut, benefiting the Greenville Humane Society! The Mutt Strut is a 2 mile Run/Walk (with or without your dog) at Greenville Tech. This 2-mile race mutt strutwill lead competitors along the beautiful Swamp Rabbit Trail and through Greenville Tech’s campus, ending in their expanded ‘Mutt Market’— featuring live entertainment, vendors, and exciting new attractions! One hundred percent of the proceeds benefit the Greenville Humane Society.

August 27Hammers & Alesat Quest Brewing Co.  55 Airview Dr.  Greenville.  6:00 PM to 9:00 PM Tickets help raise funds for The Greenville Tool Library which will loan out tools to its members for projects at home, in community gardens or at non-profits. Building upon the energy of the community garden movement, we hope to inspire and equip community projects across Greenville.  A program sponsored by Slow Food Upstate.  Visit their website for more August events.

August 28 – 31The 2014 UCI Para-Cycling World Championships.   The event features the individual time trial and road race disciplines for men, women and teams at the Millennium Campus along Carolina Point Parkway. Join 450 of the world’s best athletes, along with over 200 coaches and support staff from more than 45 countries. Male and female athletes compete in categories related to defined disabilities, such as

  • amputation/limb loss
  • blindness/visual impairment
  • spinal cord injury/wheelchair-users
  • cerebral palsy/brain injury/stroke.

Sept 6 – Greenville Parks and Rec will be offering Introduction to Tae Kwon Do this fall at the Bobby Pearse Center.  It will be an 8-week class for teens and adults ages 14 and older.  It will be on Saturday mornings from 9-10:30am starting September 6th.  All of the details are on-line at http://play.greenvillesc.gov.   Also, Yoga at Bobby Pearse will begin new classes this fall. A new instructor is being sought as current teacher, Brooke Klienfelter, is taking a sabbatical. We hope to see her back next summer!

For those interested in playing or learning Pickle Ball, there are pick-up games each Wednesday evening at the Sears Shelter at McPherson Park. They start at 4:30 and run till 9pm-ish. Come and watch or play. Some equipment is available. Don’t know what pickle ball is? Check out this website.

Greenville Humane Society 2014 Yappy Hour Series continues, presented by Camp Bow Wow.  6-8pm.  Every 2nd Thursday of the month from April to October. For $8 you and your friends can unwind with cold brews and live music from local artists. Your dog can run off leash in our canine courtyard and take a dip in the “doggie” pools.  Dogs must come on leash and be friendly, spayed/neutered, over 6 months of age, healthy & up to date on vaccinations.  For more details or in case of inclement weather: Consult their Facebook page orwww.greenvillehumane.com.

Downtown Line Dance. 6:15 – 8pm. Offered every Tuesday from 6:15 to 8 pm. at Sears Rec Center in McPherson Park. Dances are taught in a fun and easy way with great music – Hip Hop, R&B, Rock &line dancing Roll, Latin, Country, Shag, Swing.  No partner or dance knowledge required. Two left feet are fine. Bring your friends and have some fun. Cost – $4 for Greenville city residents, $5 for others. Telephone: 864-467-4326.

For other community events, check the Greenville City calendar

Or, the Greenville Convention and Visitors Bureau

Program Instructors Needed

The City of Greenville Parks and Recreation Department is seeking instructors to offer fun and exciting recreational and educational classes to our community. Our department offers a wide variety of recreational programs to citizens of all ages. These programs take place in city parks, community centers and other locations.   For a full listing of programs visit  http://www.greenvillesc.gov/ParksRec/RecPrograms.aspx

Fall 2014 Program Schedule at Community Centers

  • To view the fall program calendar for the Sears Recreation Center, go to the Parks and Rec website  You will be able to view program information and pay directly online.

   ….Or pick up a program brochure at your local community center.

 Community Center Rental

Both the Bobby Pearse Center and the Sears Shelter are available for rent.  For information about renting the Bobby Pearse Center, email Jonathan Jones or call 467-4331.

Planning a special event like a wedding reception, birthday, anniversary or family reunion? Why not have your events at the Sears Recreation Center? It is conveniently located in McPherson Park at the corner of North Main Street and E. Park Avenue (100 E. Park Avenue).

Some of the Community Center features are:

  • Kitchen
  • Restrooms
  • Handicapped accessible
  • Piano & Sound System
  • Banquet tables & chairs
  • Plenty of parking

Contact Jan Cox at 864-467-4326 or jbcox@greenvillesc.gov for more information and availability.

The use of trade names or advertisements in this publication does not constitute endorsement or discrimination by the North Main Community Association.

NMCA Newsletter (08/14)
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