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Fulfilling a Personal Mission for More Bike Racks

Posted by on Jun 13, 2017 in East Side Indy, Irvington News | 0 comments

Trent Taylor wants more places to safely park his bike in Irvington. Trent had mapped where the racks are now and likely places for additional ones. He did a spreadsheet and prioritized the locations. He was determined. He contacted members of  Irvington Green Initiative, who connected him to the intrepid team on IDO’s Public Spaces Committee. Jason Koch, who’s on the committee, had an idea of where to get bike racks. He asked Jamison Hutchins, the city’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator, who could get 10 racks that promote the Knozone program for free. Knozone is an awareness campaign run through the city’s Department of Public Works, Office of Sustainability to improve our air quality. Riding bikes instead of driving cars is a great way to do that! But you’re not going to ride your bike if you don’t have a secure place to park it. Thus the bike racks. If business owners are interested in purchasing bike racks at cost (all the free ones have been installed) that can go on either private property or in the public right of way, IndyCog has a program to purchase them. IDO will coordinate the locations and get the necessary permits. And Dan Jones, an Irvington craftsman, is considering designing and fabricating custom Irvington-inspired bike racks. If you want to make a statement, that may be the way to go. Contact...

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Volunteer Irvington Showcases Opportunities

Posted by on Jun 13, 2017 in East Side Indy, Irvington News | 0 comments

By Lisa Watson On April 23, seven not-for-profit organizations with a focus on Irvington came together to hold the first Volunteer Irvington event. The goal was to showcase the volunteer opportunities that each organization has available. There was a great and steady turnout, and we all met a lot of wonderful neighbors, including those who are new to the neighborhood and lifelong residents. Thank you to the organizations that participated, volunteers who helped with the event, and neighbors who stopped by. Congratulations to Malinda Cox Baker, whose name was chosen at random for the $20 door prize. Volunteer Irvington’s next step is to work with DiscoverIrvington.com to include links to the organizations as well as the volunteer opportunities that are available. In the meantime, see the following information about the nonprofit organizations that participated and feel free to contact them for more information. The Benton House: This historic Irvington home — built in 1873 in the Second Empire architectural style — is maintained through the volunteer support of The Benton House Association, under the administration of Irvington Historic Landmarks Foundation. Volunteer opportunities include helping with the annual book sale and home tour. www.facebook.com/thebentonhouse Friends of Ellenberger Park: Master landscape architect and urban planner George Edward Kessler designed this park in 1909, with the intent to maintain the land’s mature trees and natural paths. This organization is dedicated to promoting and enhancing the park as a resource for its surrounding communities through effective advocacy, stewardship, and fund development. Volunteer opportunities include beautifying or monitoring the park or lending a hand in coordinating special events. www.facebook.com/friendsofellenbergerpark Friends of Irving Circle: This charming park on Audubon Road, with a fountain, mature trees, and a bust of Washington Irving, was once part of the Butler College campus in Irvington. These days, Friends of Irving Circle maintain the park and host summer concerts. Volunteer opportunities include park beautification and cleanup, and assisting with summer concerts and Irvington Luminaria. www.facebook.com/irvingcirclepark Historic Irvington Community Council: This organization’s mission is to have a positive, lasting impact on the quality of life in Irvington. Irvington Development Organization: IDO works for the benefit of Irvington by cultivating positive business development, promoting the unique character of our neighborhood, and enhancing the quality of life for residents and visitors. Volunteer opportunities include grant writing, communications, and staffing the IDO booth at events. www.facebook.com/irvingtondevelopment and @IrvDevOrg Irvington Garden Club: Founded in 1999 is a group of community minded, garden-loving neighbors from Irvington (and beyond). IGC is one of many clubs in the central district of The Garden Club of Indiana. The organization hosts Irvington Farms Market and Irvington Garden Tour. Members maintain the grounds of the Benton House and Kile Oak. Volunteer opportunities include beautification and garden cleanup, and helping with the farmers market and garden tour. www.facebook.com/irvingtongardenclub1999 Irvington Historical Society: Irvington is one of the few Indianapolis neighborhoods with its own history museum, to the credit of Irvington Historical Society. This organization promotes and furthers the artistic traditions, heritage, legacy, and artists — past and present — of the greater Irvington and Central Indiana community. Volunteer opportunities include helping with events and more. On Facebook at...

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June Neighbor Spotlight: School 57 Learning Garden

Posted by on Jun 13, 2017 in East Side Indy, Irvington News | 0 comments

By Cheryl Hizer George W Julian Elementary School 57, located at Ritter and Washington Street, was awarded a Learning Garden in April of this year. Installation took place on Tuesday, May 16. Students visited their new gardens by grade level immediately following installation, and with the help of The Kitchen Community educators, teachers, and family helpers, students planted crops of cilantro, beans, peas, corn, tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, and others. Students as young as kindergarten were instructed on the appropriate way to plant each seed and the best way to care for their new garden, and EVERYONE’S hands got dirty!   THE LEARNING GARDEN Starting with a staff of five in Boulder, Colorado in 2011, The Kitchen Community has installed over 300 Learning Gardens in Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Memphis, Pittsburgh, and Indianapolis. Each installation includes trained educators, three raised beds, seating, shade, art, curriculum, seeds, soil, and necessary tools for maintaining the plants. CEO Kimbal Musk “co-founded The Kitchen Community in order to create a replicable, scalable school garden solution.” Schools and community centers that receive Learning Gardens also benefit from continued support from a team of educators and replenished seeds each growing season. GIVING CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE This amazing opportunity for our community materialized due to a curious parent and plain old-fashioned teamwork. Tara Elder discovered School 57 in some of her inquiries regarding area schools for her own children. Irvington families shared their love for this hidden gem with lots of history. After some discussion with Principal Ms. Campbell (thanks to an introduction through Brandon Randall, Parent Involvement Educator) Tara and other families toured the school and were blown away by the charm of the school’s wooden floors, ample staff and resources, exquisite library, newer construction, and small class sizes. In the interest of adding project-based learning to the culture, Tara found The Learning Garden in her explorations. She took her idea to Ms. Campbell, who embraced it. They worked together with Mr. Randall to write and submit the grant in March. THEY NEED ALL OF US Now that the Learning Gardens are planted, the work has just begun! Because the students are home for summer break, they must rely on volunteers to water the three raised flower beds. Besides feeling good about helping, you can also pick your fair share of ripe produce on your day! If you haven’t already added your name, please visit the sign-up and consider filling at least one slot! If you have a talent or skill that you would be interested in sharing with middle school students in a club before or after school, please email Ms.Campbell atcampbelc@myips.org. All grades need athletic coaches. Please reach out to campbelc@myips.org if you would be able to share your coaching experience. If The Learning Garden sounds like an ideal fit for your own underserved school or community center, submit your application...

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Experience Irvington’s Gardens in June

Posted by on Jun 13, 2017 in East Side Indy, Events, Irvington News | 0 comments

By Ed Myers, President, Irvington Garden Club Throughout the past 16 years, those attending the garden club’s annual garden tours have had the opportunity to walk shaded paths, witness the flashing shadows of overhead branches on the ground and maybe, if one was nearby, sit on a garden bench. Others have felt the cooling effect of a fountain or gazed into plant-filled pond and wondered why the koi fish within have grown so big while theirs had not. Walk slowly, as you visit the eight gardens on this year’s Irvington Garden Tour, so as not to disturb a monarch butterfly, delight in the pleasing color combinations of flower pots on a patio, and stop to smell the honey perfume fragrance of a nearby rose. This year’s tour is scheduled for Sunday, June 25, 1-5 p.m.Still only $10 dollars (children under 14 are admitted free of charge), tickets for the tour may be purchased the day of the tour at the Benton House Historic Garden, 312 South Downey...

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Discover the Best of Irvington

Posted by on Jun 13, 2017 in East Side Indy, Irvington News, Neighborhoods | 0 comments

Quick reminders: In case you missed previous announcements, here are the details for two upcoming events. IRVINGTON FARMERS MARKET Sunday, the beloved Irvington Farmers Market, brought to you by Irvington Garden Club, has resumed its summer schedule of the second Sunday of the month, noon to 3 p.m. in Ellenberger Park. The next market will be July 9. DISCOVER IRVINGTON And Discover Irvington, our chance to celebrate and share all that’s wonderful about our neighborhood in warm weather, is Saturday, June 17, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., sponsored by Irvington Business Association. Mayor Joe Hogsett will attend at 11:45 a.m. to throw out the first ball for the Black Acre Dunk Tank (no, it isn’t filled with beer), which features Irvington’s celebrities and notorious characters. The merchants will have sidewalk sales, and the community’s not-for-profits will provide activities for the children. Free bicycle cabs, courtesy of Jockamo Upper Crust Pizza, Maximum Grow Gardening, and Audrey’s Place will be available to ferry attendees to the outer reaches of the neighborhood and haul all their purchases back. And you can compete in a scavenger...

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IDO Seeks Proposals for Streetscape Landscaping Maintenance

Posted by on May 24, 2017 in East Side Indy, IDO News | 0 comments

We’re in search of a professional landscaping crew that can maintain the Irvington Streetscape between Emerson and Arlington Avenues. Proposals are due June 5, 2017, and work will commence July 1, 2017. If you’re interested in bidding on the job, please read and respond to this PDF: IDO Washington Street Landscaping RFP 2017.

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May Neighbor Spotlight: Kathleen Angelone

Posted by on May 16, 2017 in Blog, East Side Indy, Featured | 0 comments

Kathleen Angelone has been abandoned in Germany, served as an attorney for Indiana Department of Revenue, volunteered all over the world, and calls Irvington home. She owns and operates Bookmamas at 9 Johnson on the south side of Washington Street. HISTORY Bookmamas originated with Kate Ayers and Amy LaCroix on the north side of Washington Street. Kate and Amy moved the store once more before settling into its current home. Kathleen bought it once they were ready to sell in October 2007. Kathleen is no stranger to the east side. Her mother graduated from Warren Central, her family helped to establish German Church at East Washington Street and German Church Road (named after this church), and the congregation is currently building their new church on land donated to them by her uncle. After touring the world and establishing herself as an attorney, Kathleen moved to Irvington to open her own law practice. Once her children entered high school, she became an attorney for the Indiana DOR. After she bought the store, she worked as a classroom assistant in IPS to give herself more time to start the bookstore. Why would she leave her legal career to buy a bookstore, especially in an age of so much digital reading? As a child, Kathleen’s mother would take her to the library but would only ever buy books for her brother, not her. When her mother was dying, she asked her why. Kathleen’s mother told her she had always read as a child and didn’t need encouragement. While this thought made perfect sense once shared, it was never something that occurred to her. Kathleen then used her inheritance to buy a bookstore. She shared, “Opportunity came along, and I did it. Then I had to figure out how to make it work.” She compared the experience to a jigsaw puzzle; she made all the pieces fit together. ABANDONED! After traveling alone in Germany for a month as a sophomore in college, Kathleen planned to meet up with a friend who was carrying her ticket to Russia. The friend left the country without her, which she would find out later. Despite her name being on their list, she was not permitted to board. After this travel-weary 19-year-old exhausted her persuasive skills to no avail, she found a spot on the floor and started crying. Thanks to two guardian angels in business suits, she could board and make it to her next leg of the trip. WHAT’S HAPPENING? Whether you want to chat about faraway countries, Kathleen’s upcoming trips, or the newest paperback, she is sure to entertain and educate you! She can be found at the Irvington Farmers Markets at Ellenberger Park this summer. She has plans to meet Stephen King this month. Kids can win prizes with this summer’s Where’s Waldo Scavenger Hunt, while supporting our local businesses. Watch for upcoming book signings and other fun events on her Facebook page! How long have you lived and/or worked in Irvington? I moved to Irvington in 1977 and haven’t left. I have owned Bookmamas since 2007. What do you do for fun? I read, go to museums, walk, swim, and spend time with friends.  Historical fiction is my favorite genre. Gone with the Wind, To Kill a Mockingbird, Crime and Punishment, Fahrenheit 451,...

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Celebrate 25 Years of Concerts in Irving Circle Park

Posted by on May 16, 2017 in Blog, Events, Irvington News | 0 comments

This summer, join Friends of Irving Circle in celebrating 25 years of summer concerts in the park. All concerts are free of charge and family friendly. Irving Circle Park, one of historic Irvington’s most treasured landmarks, is located where South Audubon Road meets East University Avenue. The bands play from 7 to 9 p.m. while neighbors serve brats, hot dogs, and popcorn. Bring cash for concessions, and folding chairs or blankets to spread out under any of the park’s many shade trees. Audio Dinner: 7-9 p.m., Saturday, June 3; folk rock, acoustic, and blues Blue Alchemy: 7-9 p.m., Saturday, July 8; rock The Roundups: 7-9 p.m.,  Saturday, August 5; vintage western swing, hillbilly/rockabilly, and honky tonk Lightweights XL: 7-9 p.m., Saturday, September 9; rock Friends of Irving Circle is a nonprofit organization established by neighborhood volunteers who care for the park and host events throughout the year. New volunteers are welcome, and many volunteer opportunities are suitable for youth. If you would like to help out, contact Sue Beecher at sue.beecher@hotmail.com. Thank you to the following sponsors who support the park and make these free summer concerts possible: Glenroy Construction, Irvington Community Council, Irvington Garden Club, Jockamo Upper Crust Pizza, Irvington Wellness Center,  The Butler Inn, TACS, Inc., Bookmamas,  Jack and Jill Antique Mall, George Thomas Florist, Kemba Credit Union, Central Ace Hardware, and Indy Parks...

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Showcase Your House on the Home Tour to Support Irvington Landmarks

Posted by on May 16, 2017 in Blog, East Side Indy, Events, Irvington News | 0 comments

The 43rd Annual Benton House Tour of Homes is on Sunday, September 17th 2017, and the Home Tour Committee is now recruiting homeowners to showcase their homes. Consider participating, even if you’re unsure about it. Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be on the tour? Benton House board member and past tour participant Lisa Watson shares her story. “My house isn’t ready. Maybe next year.” “I don’t want people riffling through my things.” “There isn’t anything special about my house.” These are all things I have heard and possibly even said about participating in the Benton House Tour of Homes. I moved to Irvington in September of 2011 and went on my first tour that month. It was quite simply amazing on a few levels. People volunteering to open their homes up to let strangers walk through?! Now, a few years later, I know that there is no such thing as a stranger in Irvington. In the spring of 2013, I was asked to be on the home tour and I just wasn’t ready. I said, “There is so much I want to do to the house first.” I had DREAMS! Redo this room, and that one, and that one too! The Home Tour Committee received the “maybe next year” that they so often hear. The following spring, I was asked again. You know what? I hadn’t done any of the things I had wanted to do, but this time, I said yes. I had a lot to do. I didn’t really have to, but I wanted to. What committing to the September date did was challenge me to get some of those wish list things done. I replaced a window with French doors and had some landscaping done. The days leading up to the event were filled with dusting, cleaning, excitement, and a little anxiety. “What if no one likes my home?,” I worried. The weather on the day of the tour was perfect. Slight breeze, warm but not too hot, humidity was low. Let’s get this thing going! Friends were in place and knew a bit about my house, if there were questions asked. And then they came. A couple hundred people walked through my home. I met so many lovely neighbors. It was so worth it. I’d do it again in a minute! Here are some of the questions (excuses) I have heard for reasons not to be on the home tour: “My house isn’t ready. Maybe next year.”or “We are in the middle of renovating, but haven’t finished the work.” Homes in transition are often exactly what people like to see. Being able to see the history evolving – sometimes down to the studs – people love seeing it all! The thing to remember is, this is a home tour, so personality and a lived-in feel is wanted; it shouldn’t feel staged. “I don’t want people riffling through my things.” They don’t; they won’t. The people on the tour are extremely respectful and appreciative of the fact that you’ve opened your home. And volunteers keep a watchful eye as they guide visitors and answer questions. “There isn’t anything special about my house.” I doubt that. Your statement is invalid! Home tour houses can be large or small; professionally decorated or DIY; filled with...

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IDO Survey Yields Great Feedback

Posted by on Apr 11, 2017 in Blog, East Side Indy, IDO News, Neighborhoods | 0 comments

IDO Survey Yields Great Feedback

We received a lot of helpful feedback in response to the survey about our newsletter. Thank you to everyone who took the time to complete it. We’ve compiled a spreadsheet containing all responses and we’re working to incorporate these ideas in future editions of the newsletter. Here are some of the survey results. Which of the items below would you like to see more of in the newsletter? 38% New business updates 20% Neighbor spotlights 18% Local business events 14% IDO updates 10% Construction updates Do you have a story, group, or event you want us to include in our newsletter? Focus on sustainability issues Benton House Downey Avenue Food Pantry New Irvington welcome sign Irvington green space and restoration Exodus Refugee Center Irvington CSA Do you have someone you would like to suggest for our neighbor spotlight? Steve Barnett Sue Beecher Dave from World of Vapor JauNae Hanger Sue Kennedy Ed Myers Jenny Skehan The Sponsel Family Heidi Unger Sara...

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