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CRESTWOOD CITIZENS ASSOCIATION

WASHINGTON, DC       |       ESTABLISHED 1941


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  • Fri, June 09, 2017 1:26 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Crestwood, Washington, DC December, 2006

    Association Meeting to Push PEPCO to Prevent Outages

        How many times have you had to reset your clocks this year?  If the answer provokes “outage outrage,” come to the January meeting of the Crestwood Citizens Association and meet the people who are supposed to ensure reliable electric service.  A senior PEPCO representative will attend the meeting Tuesday, January 16th at 7 pm at Grace Lutheran Church, 4300 Sixteenth Street, NW (please use the side entrance on Varnum Street).  We have also invited officials from the People’s Counsel and the Public Service Commission.

        The Association has been documenting the neighborhood’s frequent interruptions in power—in both good weather and bad—and we have already been in discussions not only with the utility, but also with the Public Service Commission, the office of the DC Attorney General and the People’s Counsel.  Now it’s time to hear what the company and the city intend to do about the situation.

        Association members have heard PEPCO promise better service in the past.  The last time the utility sent someone to an Association meeting, we were told that PEPCO was installing animal guards to protect transformers, adding fuses to lines, relocating wires, putting in automated switchers to isolate problems, and trimming overhanging trees.  They may have done all of these things — yet we still end up with arguably the most unreliable electric service in the city.  It may come down to this basic problem: Crestwood is located at the end of miles of feeder lines.  Just like old-fashioned Christmas lights, if something happens anywhere down that long line, our power goes out.  But knowing why our electric service goes down so often provides little solace to neighbors whose health depends on electric medical equipment or whose work revolves around uninterrupted Internet access.  PEPCO has already installed special meters on two houses in Crestwood to monitor outages.Now it is time for the company to develop a plan that will actually upgrade our substandard service.

        Join us January 16th and help demonstrate the deep concern of the entire Crestwood community over our electric service.  You will also be able to comment on the draft neighborhood plan outlined at the Association’s November meeting.

    January Meeting of the
    Crestwood Citizens Association
    Tuesday, January 16th at 7 pm
    Grace Lutheran Church, 4300 16th Street

    Crestwood Tree Planting Saturday, November 18

        Green Team Brings New Life to The Point.  On a beautiful autumn morning last month, Crestwood residents gave “The Point” a native make-over.  The Association’s Green Team organized the community tree planting November 18th along the green space where Shepherd Street meets 18th Street and Crestwood Drive “to beautify and to be good stewards of a prominent part of Rock Creek Park,” says Green Team leader Doug Barker.

        The Casey Trees Endowment Fund generously donated all 22 trees planted that day, plus two more that came in later.  All are native to our area—including American holly, redbud, witch hazel, black gum and American beech.  A dozen serviceberry trees will offer interest throughout the year: brilliant blossoms in the early spring, summer berries that are enjoyed by birds (and humans!), fiery fall foliage and distinctive gray winter bark.  Crestwood neighbors planted the trees alongside volunteers from area colleges and the group, Friends of Rock Creek Environment. nbsp;Also lending a hand was Rock Creek superintendent Adrienne Coleman.  Residents near The Point have agreed to water the trees when needed to help them get established. Check out all the photos online at www.crestwood-dc.org/photo-gallery/crestwood-tree-planting.

    Plan, Pack and Practice

    Those three words can help you prepare for an emergency.  Every household should have a PLAN to respond to any of a number of dangerous situations: for example, a powerful snow or ice storm, flooding, a flu epidemic, or an attack by criminals or terrorists.  Then PACK the food, water, medicines and other supplies that you might need to sustain yourself, your family and your pets for a week.  Also put such supplies in your cars and workplaces.  Finally, have your family PRACTICE your response to an emergency.   The DC Emergency Management Agency has a family preparedness guide available online at www.dcema.dc.gov– or call them at 202-727-6161.

    2006 Association Highlights

    • The Association’s bi-monthly community meetings dealt with such topics as crime, property assessments, substandard electric service, environmental initiatives for the neighborhood, and emergency preparedness.
    • We updated the Crestwood Handbook and the neighborhood’s list of recommended contractors and made them available on-line at http://www.crestwood-dc.org/.
    • At our Candidates Forum in May, four mayoral candidates (Linda Cropp, Adrian Fenty, Marie Johns, Vincent Orange) explained their visions of the future and answered questions from Crestwood residents.
    • We worked with local police after a rash of springtime burglaries—and gave official commendation to the officers whose efforts resulted in a number of arrests.
    • We raised objections to DC’s proposed Comprehensive Plan and created a draft Neighborhood Plan.
    • Association President Gale Black took part in a two-day Charrette for Rock Creek Park to facilitate a partnership between the Association and the Park.
    • The Green Team hosted a Garden Tour, participated in a Rock Creek Park clean-up, organized the planting of two dozen native trees at The Point, and laid the groundwork for a native plant demonstration project on Shepherd Street behind the Crestwood Apartments.
    • The Kids Team organized a Fourth of July Parade and Halloween Party.
    • We hosted the annual community picnic on the Sunday after Labor Day, organized a holiday wreath-making workshop, got neighbors together for a Nationals game, and arranged a neighborhood trip to Hillwood Museum.


    • Crime in Crestwood on the Increase in November

      Crime rose in Crestwood last month by a bigger percentage than in PSA 404 (which includes Crestwood) as a whole.  Full details are available at www.crestwood-dc.org/crime-police-information 

      Neighborhood Notes

    • It’s a 50-year-old Crestwood tradition!  On December 24th, gather outside the Sheridans’ house at 6 pm for caroling—plus hot apple juice, cookies and a special surprise visitor from the North Pole (so bring the kids).  The festivities end by 6:45.
    • The holidays became more festive thanks to the Association’s wreath-making workshop Saturday, December 9.  Our thanks to Susan and Dixon Butler for being our hosts.  A week later, nearly 20 Crestwood residents went on a group visit to Hillwood Museum and Gardens—which was all dressed up for the holidays during its Russian Fest.  Thanks to George and Deb Chaconas for organizing the trip.
    • After a close ANC election, the commissioner for district 4A08 will continue to be James Jones.  Initial balloting gave challenger Jeff Hildebrand a one-vote lead.  But absentee votes from beyond Crestwood precincts 47 and 48 put the incumbent over the top.
    • The City Council gave initial approval this month to DC's new Comprehensive Plan, often described as a 20-year road map for the city.  The Association had voted to ask the Council to delay action on the Plan—as had the DC Federation of Citizens Associations and other community groups.  While Council members did not heed our call, they did approve several amendments to protect neighborhoods.
    • The Association is updating its list of block contacts.  Let us know at the January meeting if you would like to serve as a vital communications link on your block.
    • A new Crestwood Directory is coming. The updating process is now underway.


  • Fri, June 09, 2017 1:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Crestwood, Washington, DC April, 2006

    Contents:

    • Crestwood Meets Mayoral Candidates May 16, 2006
    • Police and Residents Respond to Rash of Burglaries
    • Things To Do NOW!!
    • Crestwood Calendar
    • Confused about "Crestwood"?
    • Let’s Walk!
    • 16 Ways We’re Working for Crestwood
    • Emergency Preparedness Update
    • Green Team Enhances Crestwood Ecology

      Crestwood Meets Mayoral Candidates May 16th
      Meeting Also Includes Association Elections

          The May 16th meeting of the Crestwood Citizens Association will feature a forum of D.C. mayoral candidates plus the election of Association officers for 2006-2007.  Three mayoral candidates who have numerous lawn signs in the neighborhood — Council Chairman Linda Cropp, Ward Four Councilmember Adrian Fenty and former Verizon DC president Marie Johns—have agreed to appear at the forum.  Please forward questions you would like them to answer to this email address: crestwood@chused.com.  our suggestions will provide the basis for the discussion.  We also need your help in finding Association members who would like to serve as officers and board members.  Write in to nominate someone or step forward yourself.  The board is also looking for people to work with the Association’s various Teams, to attend important regional and citywide meetings, and to testify on proposals before the City Council.  Your Association is only as strong as the number of people willing to put in some work on community issues!  See you Tuesday, May 16th at 7 pm at Grace Lutheran Church.

      Police and Residents Respond to Rash of Burglaries

          An April 5th email message from Police Captain Anthony Poteat contained welcome news: "A citizen observed a suspicious subject in the area and quickly called the police, which helped us to arrest a subject who had just committed a burglary."  The message also demonstrated the effectiveness of increased vigilance by both Crestwood residents and Fourth District police.  As at least ten burglaries struck homes in Crestwood and on adjoining streets, the police stepped up patrols by uniformed and undercover officers.  Meanwhile, residents heeded alerts describing the latest incidents and encouraging them to report suspicious activity to authorities.  These alerts were distributed by police fliers, through information at the March meeting of the Crestwood Citizens Association, and via the email network run by the Association.  Nearly all of the burglaries took place during the day, while most residents were at work.  The email network provided instant communication about each incident and provided a forum for a lively discussion of how the community should respond to the crime wave [sign up at www.crestwood-dc.org].   The recommendations contained in the alerts remain good advice:

      • Look out for individuals you do not recognize who are loitering in the neighborhood, offering to do random repair work, going door-to-door for dubious reasons, or otherwise acting strangely.  Call 311 to report suspicious activity, 911 to report a crime in progress.  Have a camera handy to take a photo of suspicious people.  Be aware of suspicious vehicles parking on your street.
      • Consider never hiring workers who come door-to-door.  The Association website contains the Crestwood Service & Resource Guide, a list of contractors recommended by your neighbors.  Print copies are also available.
      • Securely lock your doors and windows.  Lock your door even if you’re just out in the yard.  Also, reinforce your doorframes, since the best deadbolt is of little use if the door can easily be kicked in.
      • Keep your drapes and shades closed when you are away.nbsp; If criminals can look into your home and see something “worth stealing,” then, chances are, they will break in.
      • Put lights and even radios on timers.
      • Always use your alarm system.

          Police officers continue to patrol Crestwood to try to catch additional suspects, if they are out there.  At the same time, the community should not be complacent about other potential threats.  As Capt. Poteat reminds us, "We still have a lot of work to do to prevent stolen vehicles, thefts from the auto and robberies, which have been an ongoing problem in the Crestwood Community for years."

      Things To Do NOW!!

          Mark on your calendar the Crestwood Citizens Association mayoral forum & election meeting – Tuesday, April 16, 7 pm, Grace Lutheran Church, 16th & Varnum.
          Let us know if you can serve.  Get active as an officer or member of the Association Board.  Contact Communications Chief Tom Chused at crestwood@chused.com.

      Challenge the mayoral candidates by mailing Tom your questions for the contenders in advance of the May 16th candidates forum.

      Crestwood Calendar

      May 6-Annual Garden Tour organized by the Association's Green Team rain date 5/20)
      May 6-"Broadway on Varnum," a neighborhood musical at Grace Lutheran Church
      May 16-Crestwood Citizens Association meeting for the election of officers and a forum of mayoral candidates, 7 pm, Grace Lutheran Church at 16th & Varnum Streets
      June 11-Tentative date for the launch of the Green Team’s Rain Garden Project at 17th & Shepherd Streets
      July 4-Independence Day Kids Parade organized by the Association's Kids Team
      July 18-Association board meeting
      Sept 10-Annual Crestwood Citizens Association picnic
      Oct 7-Tentative date for Green Team Invasive Vines Project
      Oct 28-Kids Team Halloween event
      Nov 21-Crestwood Citizens Association meeting
      Dec 9-Tentative date for Association wreath-making workshop

      Confused about "Crestwood"?

          Even though the Crestwood Citizens Association has been around since 1941, you may be confused about who we are — and aren’t.  After all, there are now two community organizations with “Crestwood” in their names.  The word itself dates back to the 1940s — when developers chose Crestwood as the name for a group of homes they were building in a new neighborhood adjoining Rock Creek Park.  Since then, the Association’s boundaries have expanded only slightly from these original Crestwood streets.  This area shares common interests.  It is small enough that, despite our large and growing membership, we can hold most Association meetings in individual homes.  Also, our borders remain in a single school district and ANC district (4A08).  Because Crestwood is such a desirable neighborhood, residents of the surrounding area — and real estate agents representing nearby homes — began appropriating the name.  D.C. records list Crestwood, Carter Barron and Rock Creek East as three discrete neighborhoods.  Yet, in recent years, some people began referring to the entire area from the park to Colorado Avenue (and beyond) as Crestwood.  This larger area contains two school zones and two ANC districts — one of which extends east of 16th Street.  Adding to the confusion was the decision by the Rock Creek East Neighborhood League to change its name to the Crestwood Neighborhood League.  Residents — and even some city leaders — have become puzzled about the existence of two organizations with nearly the same name.  The Association will continue to cooperate with all of the area’s civic groups, including the League.  We were disappointed when League leaders declined our offer to collaborate with them on a mayoral forum — choosing instead to work with 16th Street Heights.  We are proud of the work we’ve been doing on such issues as public safety, property taxes, uninterrupted electric service, the District’s Comprehensive Plan and the environment.  We schedule Association meetings about once every two months in order to encourage our members to attend ANC, PSA Police Service Area) and other public meetings.  Please take advantage of our resources and also make a pledge to get involved in your Association by running for office or joining one of our teams: the Communications Team, Green Team, Issues Team, Kids Team, Public Safety Team and Social Team.

      Let’s Walk!

          Several residents have suggested that the Association organize a kind of Walkers Club that would get neighbors exercising together now that the warmer weather is here.  Whichever kind of walker you are, you can stay fit and enjoy good company with your neighbors.  Some people want to get a group together on a regular basis to walk through the neighborhood in the evening.  We’d like to hear from you and learn what time you’d want to meet and where.  Other people are looking for weekend hikes where they can discover the various footpaths in Rock Creek Park.  Not only do these paths take us from Crestwood into the forest, many of them also provide an easy route through the park to Mt. Pleasant, Cleveland Park or Van Ness (giving us a destination where we could all eat lunch together!).  Let us know when you’d like to walk and which hikes you would like to learn — or already know and would like to lead.

      16 Ways We’re Working for Crestwood

          Here’s a partial list of what the Crestwood Citizens Association has achieved in the past year:

      1. Helped neighbors stay informed by continually updating the Association website, www.crestwood-dc.org, and by maintaining instant communication through the Crestwood Neighborhood Email List.
      2. Provided Association members with copies of the Crestwood Directory.
      3. Prepared the Crestwood Service And Resource Guide (a list of contractors recommended by neighborhood residents) and posted it online.
      4. Published the Crestwood Handbook and posted it online.
      5. Collected 30 bags of trash along Piney Branch during the April 8 Potomac Watershed Cleanup, working with Friends of Rock Creek’s Environment.
      6. Marked storm drains to help raise awareness that overflow can go directly into Rock Creek and, ultimately, the source of our drinking water.
      7. Hosted the annual September picnic.
      8. Organized a Fourth of July Kids Parade.
      9. Inaugurated an annual Garden Tour.
      10. Helped coordinate a Crestwood trip to see a Washington Nationals game.
      11. Hosted an issues forum featuring three members of the City Council.
      12. Held bi-monthly meetings on vital issues including:
        • Escalating real estate assessments
        • Crime
        • PEPCO’s response to power outages
        • Preparation of a Crestwood emergency plan
        • Dealing with contractors on home improvements
      13. Represented the neighborhood at Police Service Area meetings, ANC meetings and meetings of the D.C. Federation of Citizens Associations.
      14. Participated on the task force that is updating the city’s Comprehensive Plan.
      15. Helped facilitate the establishment of a day care center at Grace Lutheran Church.
      16. Began planning demonstration projects featuring native plants on Crestwood parkland—working with city agencies, the Casey Trees Endowment Fund, the National Park Service, and the Friends of Rock Creek's Environment.

      Emergency Preparedness Update

          Every D.C. community has been asked to develop a neighborhood plan in the event of emergencies—from floods and storms to epidemics and terrorist attacks.  The Association is working to establish a buddy system for seniors and others who may need special assistance.  We have prepared a list of residents with medical backgrounds or who own such things as generators, four-wheel drive vehicles, grills and cellular Internet access.  We continue to update our directory and keep our website/email system in operation.  We are exploring how to provide CPR and first aid training.  Still, the most important efforts are made by each individual.  The D.C. government emergency information website includes valuable information about the items you should have stored at your home (water, food, medications, surgical masks, crank-operated radio, etc.), as well as the contents of an Emergency Go Kit that you might need to take with you.  In addition, the Association is re-energizing its network of block contacts.  These neighbors have always been there to gather and disseminate information.  But they become even more important during an emergency, when telephone and Internet service could be interrupted.  Please step forward and volunteer to be a block contact.

      Green Team Enhances Crestwood Ecology

          This month's cleanup (Aoril 8) along Piney Branch was just the start of a busy season of activity for the Association's Green Team led by Doug Barker.  The second annual Crestwood Garden Tour is coming up Saturday, May 6 (with a rain date of May 20).  In addition, the Green Team is spearheading efforts to beautify "The Point" at 18th and Shepherd Streets and the city-owned property at 17th and Shepherd Streets behind the Crestwood Apartments.  That latter plot could lose its weeds and Jersey barriers and become instead a "rain garden" — a landscape of native plants that provide natural beauty as they reduce pollution.  A rain garden would filter water runoff into the ground instead of having the water flow into the storm sewer and Rock Creek.  The Green Team is also discussing efforts to add plantings to The Point and perhaps add a kiosk for community announcements.  Association board members and President Gale Black met this month with Rock Creek Superintendent Adrienne Coleman to help coordinate these projects — and discuss other ways to help Crestwood residents enjoy, experience and protect the park.  The Association officers also got an update on the plan to extend the Blagden Avenue sidewalk down to the park. Superintendent Coleman repeated her support for the effort to give families safer and easier access to parkland by installing such a path.  However, she said park authorities have been concerned about the environmental effects of putting "additional impervious surface" near the creek.  She also mentioned the challenges of building such a path, noting that the south side of Blagden adjoins a tributary to the creek and the north side is next to a steep slope.  Ms. Coleman reported that a draft environmental analysis would be finished soon.


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