Town Crier Articles

Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Mary Cheston
With warmer weather and the opportunity for outdoor activities, families want to know – what’s happening at the New Town community pool playground? You may have noticed that for the past year or so the playground becomes a soggy bog after heavy rain periods. This condition is affecting its use.
 
The NTRA also received $20,000 in funds from New Town Associates in 2017 for additional equipment at the playground. However, no money has yet been spent and there is no timeframe for when all the playground issues will be resolved.
 
History
To recap how we got here:
In 2016 residents successfully reversed a proposal from the developers to eliminate any further playgrounds in New Town. James City County Supervisors agreed in July 2016 to abide by the decision of the New Town Design Review Board and RAB as to whether an additional playground would be built in the Chelsea Green neighborhood as originally designed in the New Town Master Plan.
 
A workgroup of residents met throughout late 2016 to review whether another playground should be built and if not, consider upgrades that might be possible to the main playground near the pool.  This committee consulted with residents of Chelsea Green, the playground equipment company, and James City County. In March 2017 the RAB approved their recommendations not to build a playground in Chelsea Green and to add umbrellas and an additional structure to the pool playground. In particular, the playground group felt that the use of some type of shading device would protect users from the seasonal heat and rain, thus enhancing the area’s use.
 
In April 2017, the RAB Chairman met with the developer who agreed to fund a new slide, a handicapped swing, additional tables, benches, and umbrellas.  In August 2017, the RAB accepted $20,000 payment from New Town Associates for such equipment and in fulfillment of the James City County proffers regarding playgrounds.
 
Cost then became a factor, since estimates for the recommended additional equipment exceeded the funds provided by the developer. The RAB initially proposed to cover an additional $15,000 expense through a combination of the NTRA budget and a fundraising effort. In November 2017 the RAB also asked that the playground group provide a revised list of equipment to match the $20,000 funding. However, in February 2018 the playground group deferred and asked the RAB to make the final decision considering their prior recommendation for a slide and shade equipment. They further encouraged the association to take advantage of promotional sales.
 
In June 2019 the RAB asked Town Management to research the cost of a slide, handicapped swing and at least two umbrellas for the pool playground. They also recognized that the drainage at the playground had become a problem.
 
Drainage Problem  
In July 2019 New Town’s landscape contractor met with Town Management concerning the drainage problem. The location of the playground is poor with no drainage system provided for runoff from the hard surface of the pool area as well as the interior sidewalk from Roper Park. Their initial estimate of the cost to correct the issues was $18-$20,000. In October 2019, the RAB asked Town Management to obtain at least two additional cost estimates and to consult with a professional and recommend an appropriate solution to fixing the drainage problem. In December 2019, the engineering consultant, AES, had not yet completed its analysis and the RAB asked Town Management to expedite the report.  The RAB further confirmed that funds for this repair should be considered maintenance and taken from the NTRA Reserve Account and that any new playground equipment be purchased using the $20,000 from New Town Associates. AES subsequently provided its engineering analysis and Town Management is in the process of obtaining additional bids.
 
According to Tim Grueter, Senior Community Manager at Town Management, “there are few companies who do this kind of work.” Only one additional bid is available. The second construction company proposes a multi pipe drainage system to correct runoff in multiple locations, similar to a fix provided for a James City County park with a similar problem. Complicating any cost estimate is the fact that the current playground equipment is cemented in place, requiring a contractor to manually dig around the structures to install drainage pipes.
 
Go Forward Plan
Until the drainage problem is resolved, the RAB is reluctant to install any new equipment, according to RAB Chair, Chuck Stetler.
 
The bottom line - should your family expect a mud-free and shaded summer at the playground this year? Probably not.
 
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Patti Vaticano
Categories: Life in New Town
Betty Painter (Submitted by Lucy and Charlie Painter)
In April 2019, my husband, Charlie, and I lost our 20-year old cat, Sunny, known to some in         Charlotte Park as the “Cat that got away.”  He escaped when we moved in and returned five days later, much the worse for wear.  When kidney disease took him in April, we made a firm decision:  No more cats.
 
Then we met Betty.
 
Betty was a resident of Matthews-Gloucester Humane Society where she had lived for over a month.  We were not looking for a kitten but another older cat, and Betty was turning five when we found her. Her former family had been transferred with the military and were unable to take her or her brother with them.  Her brother found a forever home within the first week; but, according to the adoption counselors, Betty’s blind eye frightened off some adopters.     But not us.
Betty has ruled our house, including our two dachshunds, since May 22 of last year.  She is, in the words of our cat sitter, a “confident” cat, code word for spoiled, and happy – and home.
 
Athena and Bull (Submitted by Max Pfannebecker)
Sugar Gliders, Athena, age 7, and buddy, Bull, age 9, share their New Town home with companion, Max Pfannebecker.  Though native to Australia, Athena and Bull were bred locally by Highland Sugar Gliders in Smithfield. In the wild, gliders live in colonies of a dozen or more and even as pets their good health requires company of their own species--hence this happy two-some. 
 
While they may look like flying squirrels and can “fly” similarly; unlike squirrels, sugar gliders are marsupials, mammals whose offspring are born incompletely developed and are carried and suckled in their mother’s belly pouch until maturity. They’re very active and affectionate and like to snuggle up in hoodie pockets. Their fur is very soft like a chinchilla.
 
They eat mostly fruits and vegetables with a homemade glider food that adds other essential vitamins, minerals, and proteins. Sugar gliders, much like a dog or cat, live 12 to 15 years.
 
Lilas Chandler (Submitted by Joyce Brown Chandler)
I took this photo of my cat, Lilas, last night. She was helping me complete my online leadership training required of my employer. She was truly intent on absorbing the new knowledge.  
Bailey Stetler (Submitted by Chuck and Susan Stetler)
My name is Bailey Stetler and I am a combination beagle and Tennessee walker. I now live with my mommy and daddy on Rollison drive. Before I was rescued three years ago, I spent some time at Heritage humane society. It’s hard for me to remember my life before the Stetler’s, but I’m told I never lived in a house. Never even walked with a leash.
My mommy Susan, had lost a sweet beagle called Molly a year before...and she said she only wanted a five pound dog if she ever got another dog. That she was tired of big heavy dogs. Well, I knew I weighed more than five pounds.....more like 55 pounds!! So, I had to pour on the charm... .and
it worked... and soon I was a member of the family. What a good life I have had these past three years....lots of walks, and plenty of great food. Maybe too much. Possibly I should call Oprah or Marie Osmond?. I somehow knew that these people would love me and give me the best home a dog could ask for. I hang out a lot with my mommy because I never know when she’ll be going to the kitchen....more food for me!!! Recently my mommy had an accident on the porch when my daddy wasn’t home, and she called for me. Only, she must have hit her head because she called me Lassie. I asked her,” who is Lassie ?” Just another fun day here at the Stetler home. My daddy says that I am the perfect dog for them...I never bark, I sleep good, and I take long naps. And you can see from my picture that my favorite place is under the kitchen table looking and begging for food from my mommy. Its a wonderful life !!
 
 
If you have a furry companion who deserves a moment of New Town fame, please email bio and pic to Patti Vaticano at pastaparty54@gmail.com.
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Patti Vaticano
Categories: Life in New Town
Dogs are popular and always welcome in New Town, as they add a richness and greater dimension to our lives.  Unfortunately, dog urination is damaging community turf.
 
The Landscape Advisory Committee has developed a pilot program to address the problem and is asking dog owners to assist in its implementation. The intent is to find a solution that protects the community’s investment in landscaping while also addressing the daily needs of dogs and their owners. A total of four test sites have been identified in the neighborhoods most impacted by the problem--Chelsea Green, Savannah Square, Abbey Commons and Village Walk,  Each mulch bed will be situated on common property between curb and sidewalk, near an established dog station, and incorporating a tree, a fire hydrant, or both.  The appearance will be that of a markedly extended mulch bed clearly identified with appropriate signage. In a few weeks, you will be seeing these extended mulch beds being prepared. More specific location information will be provided, shortly, as well as a sincere appeal to dog owners to “Respect the Turf.” and use the extended mulch beds, as requested. LAC member, David Carter, will lead the project, and fellow-LAC member, Eden Glenn, will communicate to New Town residents the systematic progress being made. 
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Mike Reilly, Activities
Categories: Life in New Town
The NTRA Activities Committee has released dates and topics for 2020's Noon Talks series held quarterly at Center Street Grill (registration for March 11 Noon Talk below).
 
NASA’s Search for Life Beyond Earth
John Delano, PhD - Geochemistry and NASA Researcher
Wednesday, March 11 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
Archeological History of Our Roper Park
Joe Jones, Director, W&M Center for Archeological Research
Wednesday, May 13 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
Dream Catchers Therapeutic Riding – How it Enhances the Lives of Individuals with Physical, Emotional & Developmental Needs
Tom Miller, Retired Physician and Charlotte Park Resident
Wednesday, September 9 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
An Historical Interpreter’s Experience at Mt Vernon and Washington’s Tomb
Dave Gaydos, Historical Interpreter and Charlotte Park Resident
Wednesday, November 11 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Dave Holtgrieve, AMC
Categories: NTRA Business
The annual inspection program will soon commence during the months of March thru April with written violations being issued by May 15th.  This year, the entire community will be inspected.  As expressed at the Annual Meeting, a walk-through of the community will be conducted versus a detailed thorough inspection that cost the Association $40/home; our budget for this year was greatly reduced.  Since the Asset Maintenance Committee’s inception, the goal was to have this become an annual process with the hope to create a cultural change that folks would attend to their maintenance on a yearly basis.
 
This program is important for the appearance of the entire community as it ages and to maintain property values. (The Master Declaration of Protective Covenants and Restrictions under Section 7.2., Maintenance of Property). Maintenance items are easier and less costly if attended to timely.
 
The HOA inspector does not inspect for major structural items, integrity of mechanical or electrical systems, pests, or leaks.  The HOA inspector will look at obvious appearance items such as fading, chalking, blotching, and uneven paint; peeling paint on entry safety walk rails; mold and green fungus anywhere on the house, fence, or steps that require cleaning; removal of vegetation growing on the house or fence (more detail of items can be found on the link below). 
 
Homeowners with maintenance items that need to be addressed will be requested to complete the needed repairs by June 30. If an owner does not agree with the repair requirements, they should write to Town Management by June 1 stating the reasons why they believe certain repairs are unnecessary. Town Management will review and reevaluate the need for repairs based on the facts laid out in the Owner correspondence, and if appropriate, a meeting will be set up between the owner and the Asset Maintenance Committee to discuss the resolution.
 
Requests for time extensions will be limited.  If an owner plans to complete the repairs, but they won't be completed by June 30, then they should provide a plan and timetable for completion. Providing copies of any signed contracts as documentation is advised. Records of all inspections and related documentation throughout the inspection and compliance process will be kept by Town Management.
 
Over the past three years, the program has had positive results among our owners. We have a community that meets the high standards of a properties consistent with a "first-quality" development. 
 
For further detailed information of the process please visit the links below to get to Exterior Maintenance section of our website.
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Maxwell Pfannebecker
Categories: Life in New Town
You may have noticed a shiny new sign hanging over the vacant space between Conte's Bike Shop and the old Dudley's Bistro location on Courthouse St. The new tenant will be a combination location of Kung Fu Tea, a decade-old international startup specializing in the wildly popular bubble tea phenomenon, and TKK Chicken, a Taiwan-based veteran of the overseas fast food market dating back to 1974.
 
For owner Feiyan Lin, it will be her second Kung Fu Tea location and she hopes to repeat the success of a buzzing location in Newport News near Christopher Newport University. The interior is sleek and adorned with bright colors, vibrant music (that isn't too loud) and includes tables, chairs, and even a comfy couch for patrons to enjoy Kung Fu Tea's vast selection of potables spanning from bubble tea to milk tea to smoothies and espresso. If you've never had bubble tea (also known as pearl milk tea, boba milk tea, or simply boba) it's definitely worth a whirl. Kung Fu Tea USA describes it as "a Taiwanese drink that was invented in Taichung in the 1980's. Typically, tea is mixed with milk or fruits and topped off with chewy tapioca balls (bubbles, boba, pearls). Customers can go classic tea or slush, milk tea or punch—and more. All drinks can be customized in three steps: Topping Level, Sugar Level, and Ice Level. Toppings range from bubbles and popping bubbles to different types of beans and jellies. Bottom line: you can't go wrong and trust your baristas (also known as Kung Fu Masters) to guide you to your new favorite drink.
 
Joining Lin's lineup in this location will be the launch of her first TKK Chicken location and even though they've been overseas for over 40 years, they've only been on the domestic scene since 2018 with locations in New York and throughout the Northeast, Detroit, Oklahoma, and Texas. New Town will be the growing empire's eleventh location. The menu includes flavorful Taiwanese style fried chicken in original, crispy, and spicy crispy varieties as well as sandwiches, tenders, and a very Westernized selection of sides like seasoned fries and biscuits. Most notable, however, is one of TKK's signature dishes called Kwa Kwa Bao, a mixture of sticky rice and shiitake mushrooms stuffed into chicken skin and fried to crispy brown (and yes your author will be waiting in line to try this decadent delicacy on day one).
 
Construction is almost complete and Lin expects to be open for business sometime in March, though a firm date hasn't been set. If you would like to dream (and maybe drool a little) about TKK's deliciousness, you can get started by visiting the websites for TKK Chicken or Kung Fu Tea! 
 
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Town Crier Staff
Categories: Life in New Town
The Arbor Day 2020 Award of Excellence, presented by the Williamsburg Area Council of Garden Clubs has been awarded to the Foundation Square Landscaping Committee and its President, Jim Kavitz. The award recognizes those who have made a difference to the environment in attractive landscaping, especially the planting and preservation of trees. The award ceremony will take place on March 13th at the Community Building on North Boundary Street.
 
Job well done to all those who worked so hard to beautify our New Town community! 
 
The nomination submitted for the award is included below.
 
Nomination: The Award of Excellence - Arbor Day 2020
(submitted by James F. Kavitz, President, Board of Directors, Foundation Square Unit Owners’ Association)
 
One need look no further than the vivid red and pink vincas intermingled with sweet potato vines as their brilliantly veined leaves cascade from the retaining wall along Foundation Street, or the sea of buttery yellow daffodils blanketing the eastern parking area in the spring, or the meticulously labeled vegetables and herbs awaiting harvest by an unknown visitor in the  garden at the north end of Foundation Square to recognize that nature has had some help in creating such stunning sights, and that help is the Foundation Square Landscape Committee.  
 
This committee was established about 6 years ago and is made up of residents of Foundation Square who volunteer their time, and sometimes their money, to enhance the landscaping provided by the developer.  Foundation Square is a multi-use building in New Town with commercial businesses on the first floor, residential condos on the top three floors, and a clock tower that overlooks Legacy Hall.  The committee started with just a few residents getting together: those who have downsized and missed having a yard or garden, or those who just wanted to get their hands dirty while improving our landscape.  Over the years the committee has grown from that small handful to over ten regularly participating members today. They all love nature and the beauty of the gardens that they have established and continue to care for, and they love that the community can enjoy the fruits of their labors as well.
 
The committee members meet periodically to plan the spring and fall plantings, incorporating plants that have been donated for their use.  For example, there are currently over 2,000 daffodils planted around the building that were donated by residents and planted by the committee.  A daffodil festival is held each April.  The group has also addressed overlooked places by enhancing the ‘woodsy’-ness of the earthen strip in the parking lot between the building and adjacent Iron-Bound Gym and by masking the building’s vital outdoor infrastructure elements with trellises of flowering vines. Members also get together in work crews as necessary to plant, prune, and weed, and they take turns, even in the brutal heat of summer, to water the plants when rain hasn’t providing enough moisture. The members know full well that a garden’s work is never done, but they wouldn’t have it any other way. 
 
One of the highlights of their work is the Children’s Garden which is open to any and all children (under the supervision of an adult) in the area, not just those in Foundation Square.  In this garden, the committee members plant a variety of vegetables including carrots, peas, tomatoes, eggplants, and cucumbers to be enjoyed by the children and whoever else happens by and enjoys fresh produce.  The plantings vary and are often changed to give the children a wider exposure to what nature has to offer.  In the past, sweet corn, sunflowers, okra, and even an artichoke have been planted.  It turns out, not only have some of the children never seen some of these plants grow, but a lot of the adults have not seen how these plants grow either.  It gives committee members great joy to see a three year old open up a pea pod and eat the contents, often for the first time. 
 
The committee also plants a fall garden, sometimes with cauliflower, broccoli, kohlrabi, cabbage, garlic and collards.  Several years ago they planted ten donated fig trees, which are still going strong with their tasty bounty, and the lesser known Paw Paw, which, interestingly, was one of George Washington’s favorites has a home here as well.   The committee members enjoy sharing this bit of history with the garden’s guests.  Some of the older residents also remember a song that goes something like “Picking up Paw Paws and putting them into a basket . . .”  Additionally, near the Children’s Garden is an herb garden, which provides a wide variety of fresh herbs for everyone in the area who wants to partake of them, perhaps for enhancing a favorite savory dish.  The members, who have selected, planted, and maintained the herbs, love to share.  The herb garden with its rock pathways, reminiscent of the one by the Bruton Parish Hall, is a hit with the small children who love to help “relocate” the rocks on occasion.  Actually, the most popular feature of the “Children’s Garden” is the rocks, and young children are often seen playing there.  Benches are provided near the garden, and parents and their little ones often rest and even have a picnic there.  One of our frequent young visitors picks mint, which his mother uses to make “mint water” for him.  Another of the young visitors, about 2 or 2 ½ years old, knows the name of every herb and can identify them easily by himself.
 
Some who enjoy the surroundings are those who sit and stay a spell by the vegetable garden, as well as those who arrive a bit early for an appointment at one of the ground floor businesses to take in the pageant of colors and the entrancing fragrance, or those who, while out for an evening constitutional or a walk with the dog, pause in Sullivan Square Park to admire the splendor of the Foundation Square gardens. The grounds of Foundation Square are open to the public, and all are welcome to drop by and enjoy the flowers and the foliage. 
 
The tireless effort and consummate dedication of the Foundation Square Landscape Committee is evident; the photos provided speak for themselves. Because of all that they have accomplished and all that I know they will continue to do to enhance our community through nature’s beauty, I am pleased and excited to nominate the Foundation Square Landscape Committee for the Arbor Day 2020 Award of Excellence.
 
 
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by Maxwell Pfannebecker
Categories: General
Future Looks Muddy for Playground Improvements | Mary Cheston
 
With warmer weather and the opportunity for outdoor activities, families want to know – what’s happening at the New Town community pool playground? You may have noticed that for the past year or so the playground becomes a soggy bog after heavy rain periods. This condition is affecting its use.
 
The NTRA also received $20,000 in funds from New Town Associates in 2017 for additional equipment at the playground. However, no money has yet been spent and there is no timeframe for when all the playground issues will be resolved.
 
History
To recap how we got here: In 2016 residents successfully reversed a proposal from the developers to eliminate any further playgrounds in New Town. James City County Supervisors agreed in July 2016 to abide by the decision of the New Town Design Review Board and RAB as to whether an additional playground would be built in the Chelsea Green neighborhood as originally designed in the New Town Master Plan.
 
A workgroup of residents met throughout late 2016 to review whether another playground should be built and if not, consider upgrades that might be possible to the main playground near the pool.  This committee consulted with residents of Chelsea Green, the playground equipment company, and James City County. In March 2017 the RAB approved their recommendations not to build a playground in Chelsea Green and to add umbrellas and an additional structure to the pool playground. In particular, the playground group felt that the use of some type of shading device would protect users from the seasonal heat and rain, thus enhancing the area’s use.
 
In April 2017, the RAB Chairman met with the developer who agreed to fund a new slide, a handicapped swing, additional tables, benches, and umbrellas.  In August 2017, the RAB accepted $20,000 payment from New Town Associates for such equipment and in fulfillment of the James City County proffers regarding playgrounds.
 
Cost then became a factor, since estimates for the recommended additional equipment exceeded the funds provided by the developer. The RAB initially proposed to cover an additional $15,000 expense through a combination of the NTRA budget and a fundraising effort. In November 2017 the RAB also asked that the playground group provide a revised list of equipment to match the $20,000 funding. However, in February 2018 the playground group deferred and asked the RAB to make the final decision considering their prior recommendation for a slide and shade equipment. They further encouraged the association to take advantage of promotional sales.
 
In June 2019 the RAB asked Town Management to research the cost of a slide, handicapped swing and at least two umbrellas for the pool playground. They also recognized that the drainage at the playground had become a problem.
 
Drainage Problem  
In July 2019 New Town’s landscape contractor met with Town Management concerning the drainage problem. The location of the playground is poor with no drainage system provided for runoff from the hard surface of the pool area as well as the interior sidewalk from Roper Park. Their initial estimate of the cost to correct the issues was $18-$20,000. In October 2019, the RAB asked Town Management to obtain at least two additional cost estimates and to consult with a professional and recommend an appropriate solution to fixing the drainage problem. In December 2019, the engineering consultant, AES, had not yet completed its analysis and the RAB asked Town Management to expedite the report.  The RAB further confirmed that funds for this repair should be considered maintenance and taken from the NTRA Reserve Account and that any new playground equipment be purchased using the $20,000 from New Town Associates. AES subsequently provided its engineering analysis and Town Management is in the process of obtaining additional bids.
 
According to Tim Grueter, Senior Community Manager at Town Management, “there are few companies who do this kind of work.” Only one additional bid is available. The second construction company proposes a multi pipe drainage system to correct runoff in multiple locations, similar to a fix provided for a James City County park with a similar problem. Complicating any cost estimate is the fact that the current playground equipment is cemented in place, requiring a contractor to manually dig around the structures to install drainage pipes.
 
Go Forward Plan
Until the drainage problem is resolved, the RAB is reluctant to install any new equipment, according to RAB Chair, Chuck Stetler.
The bottom line - should your family expect a mud-free and shaded summer at the playground this year? Probably not.
 
Extended Mulch Beds to Curb Pet Damage to Turf | Patti Vaticano
 
Dogs are popular and always welcome in New Town, as they add a richness and greater dimension to our lives.  Unfortunately, dog urination is damaging community turf.
 
The Landscape Advisory Committee has developed a pilot program to address the problem and is asking dog owners to assist in its implementation. The intent is to find a solution that protects the community’s investment in landscaping while also addressing the daily needs of dogs and their owners. A total of four test sites have been identified in the neighborhoods most impacted by the problem - Chelsea Green, Savannah Square, Abbey Commons and Village Walk. Each mulch bed will be situated on common property between curb and sidewalk, near an established dog station, and incorporating a tree, a fire hydrant, or both. The appearance will be that of a markedly extended mulch bed clearly identified with appropriate signage. In a few weeks, you will be seeing these extended mulch beds being prepared. More specific location information will be provided, shortly, as well as a sincere appeal to dog owners to “Respect the Turf.” and use the extended mulch beds, as requested. LAC member, David Carter, will lead the project, and fellow-LAC member, Eden Glenn, will communicate to New Town residents the systematic progress being made. 
 
Save the Date - Activities Committee Releases 2020 Noon Talks Schedule | Mike Riley
 
The NTRA Activities Committee has released dates and topics for 2020's Noon Talks series held quarterly at Center Street Grill (registration for March 11 Noon Talk below).
 
NASA’s Search for Life Beyond Earth
John Delano, PhD - Geochemistry and NASA Researcher
Wednesday, March 11 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
Archeological History of Our Roper Park
Joe Jones, Director, W&M Center for Archeological Research
Wednesday, May 13 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
Dream Catchers Therapeutic Riding – How it Enhances the Lives of Individuals with Physical, Emotional & Developmental Needs
Tom Miller, Retired Physician and Charlotte Park Resident
Wednesday, September 9 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
An Historical Interpreter’s Experience at Mt Vernon and Washington’s Tomb
Dave Gaydos, Historical Interpreter and Charlotte Park Resident
Wednesday, November 11 @ 12:00 PM
Center Street Grill
 
Summary of 2020 Residential Maintenance Inspections | Dave Holtgrieve
 
The annual inspection program will soon commence during the months of March thru April with written violations being issued by May 15th.  This year, the entire community will be inspected.  As expressed at the Annual Meeting, a walk-through of the community will be conducted versus a detailed thorough inspection that cost the Association $40/home; our budget for this year was greatly reduced.  Since the Asset Maintenance Committee’s inception, the goal was to have this become an annual process with the hope to create a cultural change that folks would attend to their maintenance on a yearly basis.
 
This program is important for the appearance of the entire community as it ages and to maintain property values. (The Master Declaration of Protective Covenants and Restrictions under Section 7.2., Maintenance of Property). Maintenance items are easier and less costly if attended to timely.
 
The HOA inspector does not inspect for major structural items, integrity of mechanical or electrical systems, pests, or leaks.  The HOA inspector will look at obvious appearance items such as fading, chalking, blotching, and uneven paint; peeling paint on entry safety walk rails; mold and green fungus anywhere on the house, fence, or steps that require cleaning; removal of vegetation growing on the house or fence (more detail of items can be found on the link below). 
 
Homeowners with maintenance items that need to be addressed will be requested to complete the needed repairs by June 30. If an owner does not agree with the repair requirements, they should write to Town Management by June 1 stating the reasons why they believe certain repairs are unnecessary. Town Management will review and reevaluate the need for repairs based on the facts laid out in the Owner correspondence, and if appropriate, a meeting will be set up between the owner and the Asset Maintenance Committee to discuss the resolution.
 
Requests for time extensions will be limited.  If an owner plans to complete the repairs, but they won't be completed by June 30, then they should provide a plan and timetable for completion. Providing copies of any signed contracts as documentation is advised. Records of all inspections and related documentation throughout the inspection and compliance process will be kept by Town Management.
 
Over the past three years, the program has had positive results among our owners. We have a community that meets the high standards of a properties consistent with a "first-quality" development. 
 
For further detailed information of the process please visit the links below to get to Exterior Maintenance section of our website.
 
Kung Fu Tea & TKK Chicken Add 1-2 Punch to New Town's Dining Options | Max Pfannebecker
 
You may have noticed a shiny new sign hanging over the vacant space between Conte's Bike Shop and the old Dudley's Bistro location on Courthouse St. The new tenant will be a combination location of Kung Fu Tea, a decade-old international startup specializing in the wildly popular bubble tea phenomenon, and TKK Chicken, a Taiwan-based veteran of the overseas fast food market dating back to 1974.
 
For owner Feiyan Lin, it will be her second Kung Fu Tea location and she hopes to repeat the success of a buzzing location in Newport News near Christopher Newport University. The interior is sleek and adorned with bright colors, vibrant music (that isn't too loud) and includes tables, chairs, and even a comfy couch for patrons to enjoy Kung Fu Tea's vast selection of potables spanning from bubble tea to milk tea to smoothies and espresso. If you've never had bubble tea (also known as pearl milk tea, boba milk tea, or simply boba) it's definitely worth a whirl. Kung Fu Tea USA describes it as "a Taiwanese drink that was invented in Taichung in the 1980's. Typically, tea is mixed with milk or fruits and topped off with chewy tapioca balls (bubbles, boba, pearls). Customers can go classic tea or slush, milk tea or punch—and more. All drinks can be customized in three steps: Topping Level, Sugar Level, and Ice Level. Toppings range from bubbles and popping bubbles to different types of beans and jellies. Bottom line: you can't go wrong and trust your baristas (also known as Kung Fu Masters) to guide you to your new favorite drink.
 
Joining Lin's lineup in this location will be the launch of her first TKK Chicken location and even though they've been overseas for over 40 years, they've only been on the domestic scene since 2018 with locations in New York and throughout the Northeast, Detroit, Oklahoma, and Texas. New Town will be the growing empire's eleventh location. The menu includes flavorful Taiwanese style fried chicken in original, crispy, and spicy crispy varieties as well as sandwiches, tenders, and a very Westernized selection of sides like seasoned fries and biscuits. Most notable, however, is one of TKK's signature dishes called Kwa Kwa Bao, a mixture of sticky rice and shiitake mushrooms stuffed into chicken skin and fried to crispy brown (and yes your author will be waiting in line to try this decadent delicacy on day one).
 
Construction is almost complete and Lin expects to be open for business sometime in March, though a firm date hasn't been set. If you would like to dream (and maybe drool a little) about TKK's deliciousness, you can get started by visiting the websites for TKK Chicken or Kung Fu Tea! 
 
Arbor Day 2020 Award of Excellence Honors Foundation Square | Mary Cheston
 
The Arbor Day 2020 Award of Excellence, presented by the Williamsburg Area Council of Garden Clubs has been awarded to the Foundation Square Landscaping Committee and its President, Jim Kavitz. The award recognizes those who have made a difference to the environment in attractive landscaping, especially the planting and preservation of trees. The ceremony will take place on March 13th at the Community Building on North Boundary Street.
 
Job well done to all those who worked so hard to beautify our New Town community! 
 
The nomination submitted for the award is included below!
 
Nomination: The Award of Excellence - Arbor Day 2020
(submitted by James F. Kavitz, President, Board of Directors, Foundation Square Unit Owners’ Association)
 
One need look no further than the vivid red and pink vincas intermingled with sweet potato vines as their brilliantly veined leaves cascade from the retaining wall along Foundation Street, or the sea of buttery yellow daffodils blanketing the eastern parking area in the spring, or the meticulously labeled vegetables and herbs awaiting harvest by an unknown visitor in the  garden at the north end of Foundation Square to recognize that nature has had some help in creating such stunning sights, and that help is the Foundation Square Landscape Committee.  
 
This committee was established about 6 years ago and is made up of residents of Foundation Square who volunteer their time, and sometimes their money, to enhance the landscaping provided by the developer.  Foundation Square is a multi-use building in New Town with commercial businesses on the first floor, residential condos on the top three floors, and a clock tower that overlooks Legacy Hall.  The committee started with just a few residents getting together: those who have downsized and missed having a yard or garden, or those who just wanted to get their hands dirty while improving our landscape.  Over the years the committee has grown from that small handful to over ten regularly participating members today. They all love nature and the beauty of the gardens that they have established and continue to care for, and they love that the community can enjoy the fruits of their labors as well.
 
The committee members meet periodically to plan the spring and fall plantings, incorporating plants that have been donated for their use.  For example, there are currently over 2,000 daffodils planted around the building that were donated by residents and planted by the committee.  A daffodil festival is held each April.  The group has also addressed overlooked places by enhancing the ‘woodsy’-ness of the earthen strip in the parking lot between the building and adjacent Iron-Bound Gym and by masking the building’s vital outdoor infrastructure elements with trellises of flowering vines. Members also get together in work crews as necessary to plant, prune, and weed, and they take turns, even in the brutal heat of summer, to water the plants when rain hasn’t providing enough moisture. The members know full well that a garden’s work is never done, but they wouldn’t have it any other way. 
 
One of the highlights of their work is the Children’s Garden which is open to any and all children (under the supervision of an adult) in the area, not just those in Foundation Square.  In this garden, the committee members plant a variety of vegetables including carrots, peas, tomatoes, eggplants, and cucumbers to be enjoyed by the children and whoever else happens by and enjoys fresh produce.  The plantings vary and are often changed to give the children a wider exposure to what nature has to offer.  In the past, sweet corn, sunflowers, okra, and even an artichoke have been planted.  It turns out, not only have some of the children never seen some of these plants grow, but a lot of the adults have not seen how these plants grow either.  It gives committee members great joy to see a three year old open up a pea pod and eat the contents, often for the first time. 
 
The committee also plants a fall garden, sometimes with cauliflower, broccoli, kohlrabi, cabbage, garlic and collards.  Several years ago they planted ten donated fig trees, which are still going strong with their tasty bounty, and the lesser known Paw Paw, which, interestingly, was one of George Washington’s favorites has a home here as well.   The committee members enjoy sharing this bit of history with the garden’s guests.  Some of the older residents also remember a song that goes something like “Picking up Paw Paws and putting them into a basket . . .”  Additionally, near the Children’s Garden is an herb garden, which provides a wide variety of fresh herbs for everyone in the area who wants to partake of them, perhaps for enhancing a favorite savory dish.  The members, who have selected, planted, and maintained the herbs, love to share.  The herb garden with its rock pathways, reminiscent of the one by the Bruton Parish Hall, is a hit with the small children who love to help “relocate” the rocks on occasion.  Actually, the most popular feature of the “Children’s Garden” is the rocks, and young children are often seen playing there.  Benches are provided near the garden, and parents and their little ones often rest and even have a picnic there.  One of our frequent young visitors picks mint, which his mother uses to make “mint water” for him.  Another of the young visitors, about 2 or 2 ½ years old, knows the name of every herb and can identify them easily by himself.
 
Some who enjoy the surroundings are those who sit and stay a spell by the vegetable garden, as well as those who arrive a bit early for an appointment at one of the ground floor businesses to take in the pageant of colors and the entrancing fragrance, or those who, while out for an evening constitutional or a walk with the dog, pause in Sullivan Square Park to admire the splendor of the Foundation Square gardens. The grounds of Foundation Square are open to the public, and all are welcome to drop by and enjoy the flowers and the foliage. 
 
The tireless effort and consummate dedication of the Foundation Square Landscape Committee is evident; the photos provided speak for themselves. Because of all that they have accomplished and all that I know they will continue to do to enhance our community through nature’s beauty, I am pleased and excited to nominate the Foundation Square Landscape Committee for the Arbor Day 2020 Award of Excellence.
 
Message from the RAB Chair, March 2020 | Chuck Stetler
 
Welcome Spring !  One last snow fall before the daffodils show their blooms and warm weather surfaces.  So much is happening in our community in the next couple months.
 
Probably the most important event is our HOA being turned over to homeowner control on April 2, 2020 at Legacy Hall  at 6 p.m. During this meeting,  members will elect five new directors to the board.  They will serve a term of approximately seven months until the next NTRA annual meeting in December 2020.
 
Activities this month in our community include:
1. New Town Day at William and Mary Kaplan Arena on March 7th at 1 p.m. in Person room. Many residents have supported the women’s basketball games each week. This is our way to thank the women’s team for a great and exciting season.
2. Another sensational season for the Noon Time Talks continues at Center Street Grill on March 11th at noon.  If you’re interested in space, this talk enitled "NASA’s Search For Life Beyond Earth"  is definitely for you.  Reserve your “space” soon!
3. If you haven’t heard about it yet, we’re awaiting a Little Outdoor Library to be placed outside the pool area.  You’ll be able to sit at the pool and read a “new to you” book.
4. We welcome some new people to the New Town Communication family: Max Pfannebecker as new Crier Editor and Christian Kent on the website team.
5. The Finance Committee agreed to purchase an  audio/visual system for use at our NTRA meetings and parties throughout the year.
The Transition Committee has been busy reviewing NTRA documentation, including all declarations and financial reports.  The actual transition date is scheduled for April 2, 2020.
 
Our annual home inspection program will begin again for all residents commencing on March 16th. Please prepare your home exterior for your inspection.  Review your self check list.
 
Looking forward to seeing New Town hibernating residents out on our great trails enjoying spring!
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Posted on March 1, 2020 7:00 AM by June Dawkins
Categories: Life in New Town
Work on the New Town Book Clubs' Little Library is underway! Look for details on the planned April dedication in the next issue. For more info, check out the Little Library Article in the February issue of New Town Crier.
 
 
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Posted on February 1, 2020 7:00 AM by June Dawkins
Categories: Life in New Town
Recent articles have delved into the history of Roper Park and reported on why New Town’s newest neighborhood is called Shirley Park. For others living here, how many of you have wondered how your street, as well as the common areas and neighborhoods of New Town, got their names? 
 
According to Robert Casey and his son in law, Town Management President Randy Casey-Rutland, who provided the details for this article, some of the street names and locations were chosen to recognize the people who were instrumental in founding the New Town community. Casey Boulevard is a major entry.  Joe Stettinius, Larry Salzman, active managing Board Member, and John McCann all will have streets bearing their names in Shirley Park.  Stettinius was one of the founding New Town visionaries and advisors. McCann was for many years the CEO of New Town Associates, which developed New Town. Stettinius and McCann are no longer living, but Salzman continues his role in leadership, which he has done since New Town’s inception.  Sullivan Square behind Legacy Hall is named for Tim Sullivan, the 25th president of the College of William and Mary. The College is a partner in New Town Associates. There are plans for a marker in Pecan Square at the Ironbound entrance to be dedicated to Robert’s father, Carlton Coleman Casey, the father of Robert and his brothers Carleton and Lewis. The family land formed the majority of New Town.
 
Robert says other names were chosen to recognize Casey family members. Most of these are streets in Charlotte Park. Do you live on Elizabeth Davis Boulevard?  She was Robert Casey’s grandmother and Ercil was Lewis’ wife.  Lucretia Way is named for Robert’s and his brothers’ great aunt, the Olive of Olive Drive was their mother, and their great grandmother was a Rollison.
 
In naming the streets in other neighborhoods, except Village Walk and Settlers Market, where names were chosen by their builders, Helen was chosen because it is the name of more than one family member. Luanne is a cousin, but the actual spelling differs.  All potential street names must be submitted to and approved by James City County. If a name is too similar to one in existence, it needs to be modified, as was the case here.
 
Most of the other street names in New Town are female. These and the neighborhood names, like Savannah Square and Chelsea Green, and were chosen because they were of British origin in recognition of the Williamsburg area’s colonial past. So, if you live on Shannons or Lydias, Brittany, Beverly or Marthas, your street was meant to evoke a sense of history, rather than to serve as a tribute to a specific person, although there certainly were plenty of real Marthas in colonial Virginia.
And what about Victoria’s Way?  Is it a secret? No, it was named for the queen!
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