NMCA Newsletter (8/10)

The Board of Directors meets the first Wednesday evening of each month at 6:30 PM at various local venues.

2011 NMCA Elections – Call for Nominations

It’s that time of year to start thinking about NMCA elections for the coming year. According to the by-laws, the annual election takes place at the late fall membership meeting, tentative scheduled this year for December 1. Officers will be elected by the members of the NMCA. All officers must reside within the geographical boundaries of the NMCA for the entire period they hold office, Jan. 1 – Dec. 31, 2011. All officers must have been a member in good standing for a minimum of 12 months prior to the election and must be 18 years or older.

The President, Vice President and Treasurer may be able to serve 2 consecutive terms and may run for any office after being out of office for at least 1 term. The Recording Secretary and Membership Secretary will be able to succeed her or himself as elected by the members.

This is a call for nominations for the 2011 NMCA Board of Directors. Any member may nominate someone for office. The nomination must be submitted in writing no later than October 1. You may email the nomination to pgilreath@aol.com or mail to PO Box 571, Greenville, SC 29602. The person nominated must agree in writing to serve if elected and a brief statement of their qualifications and past contributions would be helpful. Election ballots will be mailed out to all members prior to the December meeting.

District 1 Update

(Our thanks to City Council Members Amy Doyle, Lillian Flemming and Gaye Sprague for the following information.)

July 1 marked the new fiscal budget for the City. As you know, one of the chief jobs for City Council is to approve the annual budget. The process began in January with Council and City staff setting priorities for the upcoming year. With annual revenues down, the challenge for the budget was three-fold: limit layoffs, limit budget cuts of key services and limit fee adjustments. There were 32 positions reduced with the new reductions. To access any of the financial documents, click here.

There was no property tax increase, the 15th year of no increase, yet there will be an increase in solid waste pickup. You will see this on upcoming water bills for all services after July 1, 2010. The increase will be an additional $3 per month. This covers approximately 50% of the total cost for the solid waste services; the rest is covered by revenues from the General Fund. We know this is a tough year to see fees increased, but the city has incurred costs from the County and the City Council intends to make the Solid Waste fund more whole.

Weather the Storm…. is the city’s new ‘bury the power lines’ program for residents. The new program — to be introduced September 1 — will pay up to $1500 per home for Duke Power to bury your home’s service line. The application will be on a first come, first serve basis. The pilot program is underway with 8 homes on East Circle Drive off East North Street. (Editor: See earlier announcement on website for more information)

The Board of Zoning Appeals heard the Brookside Gardens appeal in mid July. The City had revoked the developer’s conditional use permit in the Spring this year after the developer cut down trees. The Board requested an improved landscaped plan and a limit on any further development for the land. The Brookside Gardens project was approved and is under construction.

CONGRATULATIONS, Summit Drive Elementary! Summit Drive is one of five schools in the state to win the Exemplary Writing Award! Congrats to students, parents and teachers for this top honor.

The next council meeting will be this Monday, August 9, 2010. Of interest to some of you may be the sign ordinance which the City is intending to improve. To see the agenda, click here.

The New A.J. Whittenberg Elementary School of Engineering will open August 16th. It is the first school built in the inner city area (Downtown Greenville’s west side on Academy St.) in more than 40 years and is the only elementary school of engineering in South Carolina. The PTA and community are building the playground and volunteers are needed as well as donations. The Playground build will be September 28 until October 3rd. Please go to www.ajwplayground.org for more information and to donate. This is a community school and we want community input and help to make the playground a reality.

Mailbox Questions

The association has received several questions relating to mailbox placement and design. New residents are being required to place mailboxes on the street and with continuing budget issues at the USPS, we wonder how long it will be until we are all required to do so. While in most cases, you will comply if you purchase a mailbox that comes with a statement that says “conforms to USPS regulations” or similar wording, to be sure you can always check out the USPS website for their specifications.
Note that new ‘Holiday Evergreen’ Forever Stamps will go on sale in October for 44¢. You may want to stock up since first class postage is scheduled to increase to 46¢ in January, 2011.

Kudos to Local Author

North Main resident Mindy Friddle has been named the recipient of the 2009 Willie Morris Award for Southern Fiction for her book Secret Keepers. The winning book is chosen for the quality of its prose, originality, and authenticity of setting and characters. Or in the words of the writer Willie Morris, the spirit of the novel might bring “hope for belonging, for belief in a people’s better nature, for steadfastness against all that is hollow or crass or rootless or destructive.” Mindy will receive the award at a reception in New York City in October. Congratulations, Mindy! …and a trip home for husband Mike Cubelo!

Kids Helping the Animals

The Greenville Humane Society has an ongoing need for newspapers to line cages and shred for kitty litter pans. They go through a 6 to 8 foot stack of opened newspapers EVERY DAY! As part of youth summer camp at the Bobby Pearse Center, the children were divided into 3 groups by age and asked to collect newspapers from their friends and neighbors. Then, last month, Paula Church, the Humane Society’s Community Outreach Director, brought in a puppy and talked to the group about helping their community, about what the Humane Society does and how they can be involved, and about adopting and caring for pets. She then showed them how to open up the newspapers…..removing the inserts which can be recycled with your normal paper recycles. This past week Pam Davis, director of the Bobby Pearse Center, took the winning group (5-7 year olds, group name The Tigers)that collected the most paper to the Humane Society to deliver all the papers and tour the facility to see how their efforts help the animals. There are lots of ways to help your community….and you’re never too young to start!
If other groups are interested in similar projects, contact Paula at paulac@greenvillehumane.com

Caesars Head Hawk Watch Schedule

Hawk Migration is one of nature’s most spectacular events. Each year thousands of hawks migrate south for the winter. These fascinating creatures make use of the prevailing wind currents as warm air from the valley below mixes with the cool air on the ridge of Caesars Head. The overlook provides a great opportunity to witness this annual event. It’s not unusual to see 200 to 300 hawks at one time soaring or circling in a thermal overhead. This phenomenon is referred to as “kettling” or a “kettle ” of hawks. “Typically, the hawks start coming through around the 21st of September, give or take a few days, depending on weather. If it gets cold in the northeast they will start heading out. Usually the birds start moving after the sun has warmed us up and the thermals are forming. After 9 or 10 am we start seeing migrants.” (email from Jeff Catlin, Greenville Co. Bird Club) To date, the highest single day count was over 5,200 birds. Learn about hawk migration and maybe witness part of this movement. Bring your binoculars, hat and sunscreen. Designed for ages 15 and older. Info: (864) 836-6115 Or, go to the Hawk Watch Website.

Origin of “Dog Days of Summer”

Most of us refer to the hottest, muggiest time of year as the ‘dog days of summer’. Although the timing differs based on latitude and climate, in the northern hemisphere, they usually fall between early July and early September. The Old Farmer’s Almanac actually lists the dates as July 3 through August 11, coinciding with the ancient heliacal (at sunrise) rising of the Dog Star, Sirius. The name comes from the ancient belief that Sirius was somehow responsible for the hot weather. Because Sirius was the brightest star, it was thought to add its heat to the sun, producing hot, unhealthy weather. In recent years, the phrase has also been associated with the stock market…..a slow time for the market with poorly performing stocks with little future potential are frequently known as ‘dogs’.

Irrigation System Installed at North Main Rotary Park

If you’ve been to the Park recently, you may have noticed a new irrigation system on the hill. Many of these plants were planted in the last year and with the dry weather this summer, keeping them watered and alive was becoming a major chore that took more time than many of us had. NMCA president, Jim Gilreath, along with volunteers Phyllis Gilreath and Joyce Murphy, spent one day installing a micro-jet irrigation system consisting of black poly pipe with individual spray emitters for each plant. This way, water goes directly to the root system, hopefully giving the plant a better chance to get established while conserving water. The system is run by battery powered time clocks which can be set to run as needed based on weather. Additional plants can also be added to the system in the future.

If you are considering installing irrigation for your landscape, feel free to visit the park and take a look at the system there. You can also download several brochures on landscape irrigation from Clemson University Extension.

Lightning Safety – The ’30-30 Rule’

“Lightning does not “decide” where it will strike until the stepped leader descending from the cloud is about 30 m from the ground or object that is struck. Thus, short objects in an open area can be struck by lightning even if a tall object is nearby. If lightning strikes a nearby object, shock can result either by direct contact or a side flash. If lightning strikes the ground, the high voltage gradients cause currents to flow in concentrated channels on the surface or within the soil, and can injure people nearby. The associated step voltages and surface arcs, respectively, can be deadly more than 40 m from the lightning strike point. In addition, there can be upward discharges tens of meters in length from tall objects (including people) that are located within tens of meters from the strike point.

Thunder produced by a lightning strike travels one mile (1.6 km) every five seconds. Thus, counting the number of seconds between the visible “flash” and the audible “bang” and dividing by 5, provides the distance in miles. In noisy urban areas, thunder may not be audible more than a few miles from the flash, and is rarely heard for distances of more than 10 miles (16 km) even in the quietest environments. The distance between successive lightning strikes in some thunderstorms can be as large as 5 miles (8 km) — at times even more.

Employ the “30-30 Rule” to know when to seek a safer location. The “30-30 Rule” states that when you see lightning, count the time until you hear thunder. If this time is 30 seconds or less, go immediately to a safer place. If you can’t see the lightning, just hearing the thunder means lightning is likely within striking range. After the storm has apparently dissipated or moved on, wait 30 minutes or more after hearing the last thunder before leaving the safer location.”

Weather Tidbits

The record maximum temperature for Greenville was set on August 10, 2007, when the thermometer reached 105° F. On August 29, 1986, a low temperature of 45°F was recorded at Caesar’s Head.
The average maximum temperature in Greenville for August is 87.7°F and the average minimum temperature is 68.4°F. Average precipitation for August is 4.72 “.


City Council Formal Meeting and Work Session schedules.

June 2 – August 25 – Reedy River Nighttime Concert Series, Peace Center Amphitheater,

August 13 – “Summer of Love” Benefit for the Greenville Humane Society. 8 PM at The Handlebar. Local musicians perform top hits from 1967. Tickets $10. Info: 864-232-1726.

August 17 – 7:00 pm. Native Plant Society Monthly Meeting. “The Natural and Cultural Heritage of Fire in the Southlands.” The speaker is Johnny Stowe, Heritage Preserve Manager for the SC DNR’s Heritage Trust Program. Visit the NPS articles page to read Johnny Stowe’s writings on the interesting ecosystem where he grew up in the mountains, ridges and valleys of northern Georgia, and on woods burning in South Carolina. Meeting is at Greenville Tec Administration Building, McAlister Square.

August 20 – Glory on the Gridiron: A History of College Football in South Carolina. 7:00 pm-8:30 pm. Hughes Main Library, Meeting Rooms A-B. Join museum curator Fritz Hamer and SC high school football coach John Daye as they share highlights from the storied history of college football in South Carolina. Learn about star players, coaches, team rivalries and unsung heroes from around the state. Call 527-9293. Palmetto Bean Cafe will be open until 7:30p for this event.

August 20 – Growing up Upcountry Family Night. 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm. Have you ever wondered what it was like to grow up in a time before you were born? Take a peek at Upcountry life in days gone by at this delightful Museum Family Night. With surprise special guests, fun crafts and activities-all designed to take YOU to another time and place. Free with Museum admission.

September 18-19 – . The USA Professional Cycling Championships returns to Greenville for a fifth consecutive year. The Championship weekend features the USA Cycling Professional Time Trial Championship on Saturday at CU-ICAR and the USA Cycling Professional Road Race Championship on Sunday, which starts and finishes in downtown Greenville. Bikeville will once again offer free bike valet parking at the event on Sunday.

October 2 – Fall Native Plant Sale. 9:00 – 1:00 PM. Save the date and watch for more details to come. Native Plant Society Upstate Chapter.

October 29-31. Friends of the Greenville County Library System Used Book Sale. Watch for more details.
The Friends of the Library provide financial support for such things as:
• Scholarships for library employees
• Outreach to teachers
• Library equipment
• Children’s programs

The following classes will be held at the Bobby Pearse Community Center, 904 Townes St., on the dates indicated. For additional information or to register for programs call or email Pam Davis at 864-467-4331 or pdavis@greenvillesc.gov .

Now – August 16 and (just added) September 13 – October 18 – Mondays 6:30-7:30 pm. Yoga. Instructor: Brooke Kleinfelter. Fee: $5 per class. Pre-registration NOT required. This class will be geared towards beginners, but all levels are welcomed and encouraged. The sequence of postures will be based on power vinyasa yoga, starting class with sun salutations and ending with deep relaxation. It also will include several standing and seated postures. A specific breathing technique will be taught to carry you throughout the class. This sequence of postures will combine with breath work to create results on a physical, mental and emotional level. Come flow with us. (Editor’s note: Even if you missed earlier classes, you can still come and join the fun)

August 28 – October 2 and October 16 – November 20 – Saturdays 9am – 10am. Eight Pieces of Brocade and Qigong. Fee: $30 for six week session. In this class, we will work with several basic Qigong movements, as well as learn a complete Qigong set called the Eight Pieces of Brocade. The name of this well known form refers to the eight individual movements of the set which are said to impart a quality of health of the body to be likened to fine brocade – a richly decorative fabric. The Eight Pieces of Brocade date back to the Song Dynasty (between 960 and 1279.) Register on-line at Greenville Parks and Rec.

August 17 – December 9 – Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10am-11am. Fitness Aerobics. FREE. In this class, participants will get a great cardio aerobic workout. The class will be geared to adult participants. All levels are welcome! Participants do not need to pre-register for this class. Instructor: Colleen McCullough.

September 9 – December 2 – Girls on Track. T/TH 5:15-6:30pm
September 13 – December 1 – Girls on the Run. M/W 5:15-6:30pm

This fall the Bobby Pearse Center will be hosting Girls on the Run: Preparing Girls for a Lifetime of Self-respect & Healthy Living. ‘Girls on the Run’ is an afterschool program that uses the power of running to help girls become strong, content, self-confident young women. ‘Girls on the Run’ will be for girls 8-11 yrs. old. ‘Girls on Track’ will be for girls ages 12-15 yrs. old. Fee is just $10.42 per 75 minute session (24 sessions). **Full and partial scholarships are available**
To Register: email girlsontherun@ghs.org or call 864-455-3252.

September 21 – November 18 – Homeschool Fitness Classes: Mondays and Wednesdays, 6-12 year olds at 9:45am – 10:45am; 13-18 year olds at 11am – Noon. 9-week session: 2 classes per week = $60 for one or 1st child, $50 for 2nd child, $40 for 3rd. 9-week session: 1 class per week = $35 for one or 1st child, $25 for 2nd child, $15 for 3rd.

Websites of Interest

New Downtown Greenville multi-media e-magazine featuring shows, specials, events and performers.

To subscribe to City enewsletters.

Calendar of events for the Greenville Library

Don’t forget to renew your NMCA membership. Only $10 annually. You can renew easily via PayPal or download, complete and mail the form found at the NMCA membership page. Membership runs on a calendar year from Jan 1 to Dec 31. If you are not sure if you are current in your dues for 2010, please let us check for you. Just email pgilreath@aol.com and we’ll let you know.
We need your participation!! Tell your neighbors, too. Thank you!!

NMCA Newsletter (8/10)
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