Nancy McFarlane: Last weekend I attended two meet and greets hosted by good friends who live off of Wade Ave. On the evening of Friday, August 12, Neighborhood Leader Bill Padgett hosted an incredibly well-attended event for me at his home on Dixie Trail. Bill has an amazing home and beautiful patio and yard, perfect for entertaining the 200+ neighborhood and CAC leaders from across the city who attended the meet and greet. After speaking with dozens of guests, a consistent message rang true – citizens love their city and all of the wonderful amenities and features like parks, greenways, public art, clean drinking water, active public spaces, transit services and infrastructure, and more! If we are to continue to attract and retain a high quality, educated workforce, we must continue to provide services and amenities that make Raleigh such an attractive place to live and work.
On Saturday I started the day in SE Raleigh at the Southgate Community Day held at the Sgt. Courtney T. Johnson Community Center. There I met residents from the Southgate neighborhood who attended to celebrate unity, pride, and learn more about the resources available to them. I was joined by representatives from the Raleigh Parks and Recreation Department, Commissioner James West, Councilman Eugene Weeks and many others.
Later Saturday afternoon I spoke at a Share our Shoes (SOS) Mania Event in Moore Square. Save our Shoes is a critical organization that distributes shoes to children of local financially challenged families. There I met with SOS volunteers, staff, and event participants, and learned more about the challenges and needs of families in Raleigh.
I began Sunday with a morning interview with News 14 Carolina. Then, I attended a service at Martin Street Baptist Church. Dr. Earl C. Johnson shared an inspiring and thoughtful sermon. Following the service, I headed to Cat Banjo in Cameron Village and attended a fundraiser for local shelter animals.
Later that afternoon I attended a fabulous meet and greet at the home of Donna Bailey in University Park! University Park is a extremely active neighborhood located between Cameron Village and Meredith College. University Park residents have a strong grasp on how our city can accommodate new growth without compromosing the quality of life and sense of place of existing communities. Aside from new growth, residents were also interested in discussing transit, drinking water, and education issues facing Raleigh and the surrounding region. I look forward to working with University Park in the future and appreciate UP residents’ guidance on critical issues facing our city!
I ended my action-packed weekend at the Boylan Heights block party where I reconnected with good friends and made new ones! Boylan Heights is a fantastic neighborhood and, like University Park, maintains a strong sense of community.