Meeting Minutes – Dec. 12, 2018

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West End Neighborhood Association (WENA)
Meeting Minutes Wednesday, 12-12-18

Reiche Community Room

Board members present: Christian Bisimwa, Leana Good-Simpson, Ian Jacob, Steve Mortimer, Liz Parsons, Pamela Shaw, Bryan Van Dussen.

Board members absent: Barb DeSerres, Kim Sutton, Gwynne Williams

Others present: Christine McHale, Lin Parsons, Curt Sachs, Ethan Strimling, Lara Nordenson (Good Medicine), Donna Kim (Good Med), Liz Strawbridge (Good Med), Espahbad Dodd, Catherine Hyde, Matt Hyde

Note: did not have a quorum for an official meeting.

Pamela Shaw, incoming president, called the meeting to order at 6:35, and introduced the new board officers and members.

Secretary’s Report. The November minutes were approved as posted on the WENA website.

Treasurer’s Report  

Norway Savings $4,987
Petty Cash $30
Total Available Funds $5,017
Swim for Life $3,177
Harbor view $144
General fund $1,466
Subtotal $4,987
Petty Cash $30
Total Funds $5,017

Community Announcements:

  • Matt Hyde, Friends of the Western Promenade (see website). FOWP is a nonprofit dedicated to restoring and preserving the Western Prom. FOWP will be the primary advocate for the Western Prom, be a source for information/education, assist in creating a “Master Plan”, raise funds for maintenance/ capital improvements, and collaborate with the City on projects identified in the Master Plan. FOWP hopes to complete the master plan by mid-2019, then accept public comments. FOWP needs volunteers for committees, the board, marketing and communications, raising money, and more. Contact FOWP if interested. Also, submit “vision” ideas via the website (see historical photos on the website: skiing, toboggan run, etc.). The Western Prom greenspace is large, extending to the Valley St. dog park, basketball court, and beyond.
  • Liz Strawbridge, MD, Good Medicine Collective (aka Maine Integrative Healing). Maine Integrative Healing will open in March at 231 York St. Its aim is to offer medicine that realigns people with nature’s rhythms in the form of food, movement, connection, Rocky Coast Family Acupuncture, Maine Music Therapy, art, bodywork, functional medicine and primary care. It will be home to an LB Kitchen cafe, teaching kitchen and urban garden, a studio for Lila East End Yoga, dance, music, meditation, performance and other experiential opportunities. Other practitioners, storytellers, artists and musicians will be joining this educational and experiential collaborative venture.  
  • Winnie Lee is heading up a pasta and sauce drive at Reiche.  Until January 31, the group is seeking pasta and sauce in cans or plastic bottles, food that is easy for kids to prepare. Food donations will be collected in the 2nd floor Community Room.
  • The new SeeClickFix/FixItPortland mobile app was announced. Download it for your smartphone via the Apple or Android App Store.

Featured Speaker: Doug Hitchcox, Maine Audubon staff naturalist. Topic: Welcoming Winter Wildlife

Doug offered a very interesting talk about how the numbers and species of birds found in our area are changing. For example, the number of Eastern Bluebirds has skyrocketed, driven by climate change, more birdhouses, more fruit bearing trees. Doug described “Christmas bird counts done in “circles” from 12/14 – 1/8, when Citizen Scientists use online apps (eBird and Merlin) to report what they see. The apps walk novices through bird identification (size, color, shape, etc.). Doug noted that one thing we can all do to help is drink Birds & Beans coffee, the grounds of which are particularly good for birds. Doug also recognized the West End for being the first sector (sector = 9 square mile block of space) in Portland to complete its 5-year Maine Bird Atlas (4,000 in ME).

The meeting adjourned at 7:45.

Steve Mortimer, WENA Secretary