Whether you are a new resident or a long time neighbor, a renter or homeowner, there are plenty of ways to get involved in the Enos Park community. In fact, there are so many things happening year round that we have created teams of volunteers that oversee different areas:
This team oversees the green space in the neighborhood, including our sculpture garden, apple orchard and community gardens. The team also takes care of the planters by our gateway signs and works with the Springfield Park District to help with clean up and plantings in our two neighborhood parks.
The two vacant lots at the corner of 8th and Enos have been transformed into our neighborhood sculpture garden. Each year, we dedicate a new sculpture during our Rock the Block celebration. We’ve also added a water feature, lighting, and brick pathways. It takes a lot of work to keep the garden looking good, so we are always in need of people to help trim, plant, mow, and weed in the sculpture garden.
Each spring, we clean up our two neighborhood parks, Enos Park and Gehrmann Park. Volunteers plant flowers and grasses in planters provided by the City and at the gateway signs into Enos Park. Volunteers also keep the planters watered throughout the year.
Alley Clean Up
In the spring, summer, and fall volunteers drive all of the alleys in the neighborhood looking for large items and other fly dumping, which is reported to the city’s Housing Inspector. The Association also holds a neighborhood wide clean up in the spring and fall to clear vacant lots, alleys, and curbs. Volunteers are assigned to different sections of the neighborhood and Public Works picks up the accumulated items. This is just one example of the EPNIA’s strong working relationship with the City of Springfield; the Association provides the volunteers and manpower, and the City provides the follow up and enforcement.
The EPNIA participates in the City of Springfield’s Adopt-A-Street program and regularly picks up litter along 5th, 6th, and 7th St. If you are interested in volunteering to help clean a street, contact Michelle Ownbey at 553-4629. It takes two volunteers approximately one hour to clean a street from Carpenter to North Grand.
Safety & Security Team
Volunteers on this team take turns checking vacant properties owned by Enos Park Development. During warm weather, they often go on walks around the neighborhood to greet and interact with people. Residents are often more likely to report suspicious activity to a fellow neighbor than to law enforcement, so it’s a great way to find out about things going on and be able to proactively communicate suspicious activity to our Neighborhood Police Officer.
The fundraising team coordinates our major fundraisers of the year, which are a spring flower basket sale and fall bulb sale. The neighborhood association also sells engraved bricks year round, which are then placed in the pathways of our sculpture garden. Finally, the team helps recruit volunteers for our annual home tour and drink sale at the Edwards Place Fine Arts Fair, which both help raise money for the association’s activities.
It takes lots of people to make all this happen, so we are constantly looking at ways to better engage with others in the neighborhood. The Community Engagement team serves as the welcome wagon for new neighbors, but also tries to find ways to help long time residents become involved. One of the ways this happens is by holding social gatherings, such as Neighborhood Night In, where homeowners take turns hosting an open house the last Friday of each month so that residents can see each other’s renovations and also get to know their neighbors.
This team also serves as a liaison with the local school through the Family And Community Engagement (FACE) team at McClernand Elementary. They host a back to school cookout, assist with book fairs and other special events at the school, and try to get to know the families who have children attending McClernand.
Over the summer, the Community Engagement team works with our various community partners to plan constructive activities for neighborhood children. In 2016, we were able to launch a two day a week summer program for grade school children as well as a weekly bicycle club.
This team plans and organizes our major events for the year, such as Rock the Block, National Night Out, and the annual Historic Homes Tour.