This is called “bath by fire…” I am the newest member of the Board of Directors for the New Town Residential Association, having been appointed to the seat vacated by Larry Burian’s resignation. Chuck Stetler, Chairman of the Board, asked me to write this November article based on my experience working with two committees, Activities and Asset Maintenance, since we moved to New Town two and a half years ago.
Community service and participation is very important—not just to me, personally, but to the long-term success of our neighborhood. We very much enjoy the location and atmosphere we’ve found here, after having had a home in the Williamsburg area for more than 20 years. The volunteer committees ensure that the quality of life we all enjoy will be maintained; even though the two committee charges (our “charters”) are vastly different. That has appealed to me, since the Activities Committee is all about the “social” aspects of New Town; providing a way to enjoy the company and camaraderie of our neighbors and friends. Together we’ve planned pool parties, Kentucky Derby celebrations, Oktoberfest, billiards, Halloween parades, the great Noon-time Talks, and several other events, all designed to bring us together as a community. It’s a lot of work and the committee needs help to maintain (and expand) those social interactions. COVID 19 has forced us to rethink the kinds of events we’ve done and I assume that in the future (when life returns to some semblance of social interaction in addition to social distancing) we will discover the “right” blend of those opportunities.
The Asset Maintenance committee charter couldn’t be more different—our charge is to annually coordinate the “inspection” of all of the “built” assets of the New Town Residential Association, including residences of our homeowners and the shared community assets (like the pool buildings, our white fences, and our green spaces), to ensure that all those remain of a quality that is representative of a first-class community and reflect positively on our neighborhoods.
As you are well-aware, many of our homes, beyond those newly constructed in Village Walk, Roper Park, and Shirley Park, are beginning to “come of age.” Karen and I live in Abbey Commons and our home was built in 2006. Unfortunately, in developments like ours, builders don’t always use top of the line, first-class materials and equipment, which means for all of us our own personal assets are beginning to need attention. We’ve just replaced one of our air conditioning units, both inside and outside. We’ve replaced the flooring in the first floor, had shingles replaced and gutter systems redone. The paint on many of our homes are beginning to show their age. I’ve noticed as I walk around New Town that even some of the brickwork is beginning to need attention. My point is that the volunteer work on the Asset Maintenance committee will become increasingly important as our homes and community assets continue to age. As our committee members reach the end of their terms, it is gratifying to see others step forward to help, but we always need more.
There are six additional committees, all staffed by volunteers, that cover most of the aspects of our community, in addition to the Board of Directors (also, all volunteers), so there are so many ways you can contribute. Those of us who are retired (and seem to have more time to give) also need the balance of younger residents, so that we benefit from all perspectives. Please think about how you might help?
I, along with all Board members, welcome your questions and comments. See you around the neighborhood!