Morningside Neighborhood Association Meeting

31 May 2011

By Cindy Ulshafer from the Statesman Journal

In the renovated Painters Hall in the Pringle Creek Community on May 12, the 35th annual meeting of the Morningside Neighborhood Association was buzzing with lively discussions.

Chairwoman Pamela Schmidling called the meeting to order and introduced the speakers. Angie Hedrick from Salem’s police department urged everyone

to check out —”the most up-to-date report” pinpointing Salem’s crime locations, according to Cpl. Jeff Wiedemann of the city’s Crime Prevention Unit.

He responded to neighbors Lee and Randy Lloyd’s concerns of speeding on Commercial Street. Jeanne Spaziani described a hazardous street corner near her home. “I drive by there all the time,” said Wiedemann, and said he’d watch for offending evidence. Knowing your neighbors is the best crime deterrent, he added, and Hedrick put in an early pitch for the Neighborhood Watch program.

City Councilor Brad Nanke, a volunteer in that position for 11 years, talked about the city’s revenues, improvements and goals. One neighbor asked if there is a plan for handling heavier traffic after Trader Joe’s opens, and Nanke said he’d invite a city traffic engineer to the next association meeting. Talking about a “big nasty earthquake” that could be due in this area, Roger Stevenson of Community Emergency Response Team was pleased that a third of the people in the audience have a two-week emergency preparedness kit. When assembling a kit, he said, think of it as “just a long camping trip in your front yard.”

Jeff Kresner of the Red Cross suggested that each family have one contact person outside of the area. Text messages transmit easier than cell phone calls during a disaster. Like other guest speakers, he said there are volunteer positions open. Salem’s mayor Anna Peterson praised the work of the association, saying, “You’re well represented. The city is only as strong as an individual.” She said that already two years ago the city budget was being adjusted so now there’s less “jostling for those very few resources.”

Before closing, Schmidling asked if there were two neighbors willing to fill out the association board, and Mike Mitchell and Tony Sorem volunteered. She also lauded Pringle Creek for offering gardening space for neighborhood use. Several college-age people attended, seeking ways to be involved, reassuring the rest of us that our neighborhood will be in good hands in future years. 

Cindy Ulshafer is a freelance writer covering events in South Salem. Contact her at at least two to four weeks before your event if you’d like it to be considered for coverage.