Hello Prairie Hills neighbors,
Block Captain Update
Prairie Hills Block Captains met on April 12th and were welcomed for orientation and brainstorming possible neighborhood activities.  Ideas included a “services networking” list (babysitters, lawn mowing, electricians, plumbers, etc.) and a Spring Pride Day trash clean-up.  Safety concerns were also brought up, and will be pursued by the board’s officers.  Block captains will be distributing information about upcoming activities and have been encouraged to find out what their neighbors are most interested in or concerned about.
Mark Your Calendar
Get ready to learn more about “The Cultural Divide” on Thurs. May 24, 6:30 pm, at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church (1701 McKenna).  The neighborhood association is bringing in Richard Harris, executive director of Vision Beyond Bars, and Kris Anderson, youth program director at Meadowood Community Center, to share their insights about today’s youth, especially African Americans, and how we can better communicate and co-exist in a positive way.  Watch for details.
Spring Pride Day
Spruce up your block, or join neighbors in picking up trash in public greenways on Fri. May 18, from 6-7:30 pm.  Meet on Westbrook Lane, just south of 2032, at the greenway.  We’ll head north through the greenway toward Raymond Road, picking up trash as we go.  Trash bags will be provided, but please bring your own gloves.  Snacks to follow!  Rain date is Mon. May 21, 6-7:30 pm.
Help Publicize Prairie Hills Events to Your Neighbors!
Would you be willing to deliver fliers to Prairie Hills residential areas that do not have a Block Captain?  Your only responsibility would be to drop off informational fliers.  Some areas are as small as 10 households.  Any helpers would be greatly appreciated, so that we can reach folks who have not yet joined the association.  To volunteer, please email prairiehillsna@yahoo.com.
Next Prairie Hills Board Meeting
Members of the Prairie Hills Neighborhood Association are welcome to attend board meetings if they are interested.  The next board meeting is scheduled for Thurs. May 10.  Please contact us at prairiehillsna@yahoo.com to learn the location and to let us know you are coming.
City Budget Meetings
Please join your neighbors, city staff, Mayor Soglin and alders to help develop the city’s 2013 budget.  In these challenging times, citizen involvement is more important than ever.  If you are unable to attend the May 2 session at Toki Middle School (5606 Russett Road) from 7-9 pm, please do take the online survey:  http://www.cityofmadison.com/budgetProcess/
Get Your Fresh Veggies Locally
On Wednesday afternoons, once the garden season gets going, you’ll be able to get fresh veggies, baked goods, and more at the Southwest Community Farmers Market.  To be kept in the loop about the market, like them on Facebook!  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Madison-WI-Southwest-Community-Farmers-Market/86387742218  Or, to help with promoting the market, or coordinating volunteer activities, contact Lisa at 235-8979.
4th of July at Elver Park
According to the City of Madison Parks Department, the Elver Park 4th of July fireworks display will occur on Tues. July 3rd, beginning at 9:30 pm.  This is always a biggie for our neighborhood, because it’s nearby.  Anyone interested in organizing a parade for the kiddies?  Or a picnic for fellow neighbors during the day?  If so, please contact us at prairiehillsna@yahoo.com.
Lost a Pet?  Contact the Dane County Humane Society
Did you know that the majority of pets that are lost are set free inadvertently by workmen or by children?  If you have a pet, consider having it microchipped so you can easily be found if your pet escapes from your home.  To learn more, visit www.giveshelter.org.
Fundraiser for Economic Development Kitchen
The Northside Planning Council is building the Food Enterprise and Economic Development (FEED) Kitchens to help youth and adults develop job skills that will move them toward self-sufficiency.  The Kitchens will be a place for food entrepreneurs to start businesses that make more local food available to more people, more of the year.  Would you like to help support this venture?  If so, please visit http://www.feedkitchens.org/?page_id=254 to learn about an eggroll sale fundraiser.  Order by April 22nd!
News from Water Utility
Keep up with the latest news from the City’s stormwater utility, including illegal stormwater discharge, clean-up following winter, and current projects to improve stormwater drainage by viewing their March newsletter at http://www.cityofmadison.com/engineering/stormwater/index.cfm
Column from Dane County Executive
Please visit the following website for an update from Joe Parisi, Dane County Executive:  http://www.countyofdane.com/exec/columns_from_Joe.aspx.

Tania Banak, Prairie Hills Neighborhood Association president