logo

Highland Heights Green Task Force

Highland Heights Green Task Force - Serving the Greater Hillcrest Communities & Beyond

2015 Meeting Minutes


The campaign for 2015: "Clean Water 4 All"

View other years here:

2015 Meeting Notes

Agenda December 2, 2015: Highland Heights Green Task Force Business Meeting & Elections

Judy called the meeting to order with 11 people in attendance.

Financial Report

We are financially in good standing.

Website

  • First time views continue to add up.
  • We have 23,331 views. Please “Like” us on Facebook.

Judy went through the list of events that were held during the past year. What worked well and what didn’t, various suggestions made - such as - the FreeCycle worked well with things up on tables, the Eco-Fair while small, produced some great conversations with people who were interested in learning and sharing information. The Green Vendor Gift Fair was a success. We talked about charging a door fee next year, providing food (bake sale, coffee, soup?), and some form of music.

The Millridge Garden has been turned over to the PGT at this point with a few interested parents who will hopefully move forward keeping it and the composting program alive. Without support from the administration and staff at Millridge or help from families, the garden had become a burden.

The MHS Courtyard Project has $500 slated from the HHGTF and a $2K grant from Progressive to help see it to fruition.

We chose our Campaign theme for 2016 which will be “Land, Food and Us”. We have a tentative schedule put together for next year which looks fun and informative. The January meeting will hopefully be held at Hillcrest Hospital so we can see all of the wonderful recycling initiatives that they have in place there. Amy will update the website as dates are finalized for 2016.

Elections were held for both Officers and the Board of Directors and the results are as follows:

Officers

  • President: Judy Dearden
  • Vice President: Paul Costanzo
  • Treasurer: Roy Fash
  • Secretary: Amy Milroy

Board

  • Judy Dearden
  • Al Hess
  • Mary Ellen Dombek
  • Rick Evans
  • Mary Fash
  • Frank Popotnik
  • Marybeth Skala

As our assets grow we should consider how best to use them. Marybeth suggested creating a scholarship for an MHS student who is going on to college to study Environmental Science or the like. It was voted on and agreed to offer a $500.00 scholarship this spring. Al will check on the deadline to offer a scholarship for this year as well as looking into putting ads in the program for the “Green Tie Gala” for the HHGTF. Amy will begin creating a scholarship application as well as a blurb for the program should we buy ad space in it.



Respectfully Submitted,

Amy Milroy, Secretary


Agenda October 7th, 2015: Highland Heights Green Task Force Business Meeting

Great Lakes Issues, Presenter: Hyle White Lowry, Ohio Outreach Coordinator w/ the Alliance for the Great Lakes

Judy called the meeting to order and briefly went over our financial status – We are financially in good standing.. Our website continues to see increased traffic of new viewers which is a great thing. Our Facebook page has 88 likes – encourage people to follow us on Facebook – we only need 12 more to reach 100.

The Little Free Library in the Community Park located near the pool is being used nicely and can always use donations of children’s books.

Events

  • Great Lake Erie Boat Float –Once again weather foiled the fun at the Great Lake Erie Boat Float! Due to 5-7 foot waves, only the surfers and kiteboarders along the beach were in the water. No boats could go out into the rough water.
  • Greenwood Farm Fall Fun Fest – Despite the rain folks made it out to the Fun Fest. With the help of the wagon stopping at our remote location at the back of the property, we had more people swing by our table.
  • Eco-Fair - Twenty-two environmental groups participated and the event was well attended with people gathering much interesting information from each group. Many people wanted to know where to find out if a commercial product is safe for the environment - Check out the Environmental Working Group at: for information.

Upcoming Events

  • Holiday Gift/Green Vendor Sale - November 7th, if anyone knows a vendor who would be interested, please let Judy know. NOTE: There will not be a Wednesday evening meeting in November.
  • End of Year Business Meeting – December 2nd with election of officers.

The evening presentation by Hyle White Lowry – the Ohio Outreach Coordinator - was wonderful. She joined us to speak about the Alliance for the Great Lakes whose mission is: to conserve and restore the world's largest freshwater resource using policy, education, and local efforts, ensuring a healthy Great Lakes and clean water for generations of people and wildlife

If you were unable to attend the meeting on the 7th, the Alliance for the Great Lakes has a wonderful website that of the course covers all of the things Hyle discussed. As citizens living along the shores of the incredible resource that is Lake Erie we should all be aware of the special challenges and issues that the lake faces. The Alliance addresses these problems head-on and offers people the opportunity to help.

Visit: Great Lakes

A big HHGTF Thank You to Hyle for all of the great information and a really fun informative evening!


Agenda Septemberr 2, 2015: The 4th Annual Gazebo Potluck Dinner and 50/50 Raffle

Judy called the meeting to order and briefly went over our financial status, 2015 membership count, and our social media presence. We are financially in good standing. We have $500.00 earmarked for the Mayfield High School Living Lab project. We have exceeded our 2015 membership goal with 42 paid members. Our website continues to see increased traffic of new viewers which is a great thing. Attendance at meetings and events has been high this year – 25-50 – which is fantastic. The Highland Heights Green Task Force extends a big thank you to all of our presenters and volunteers for contributing to this success.

Judy mentioned that the Little Free Library at the Highland Heights Swimming Pool could use some donations of children’s books. They seem to be very popular there.

Events

Judy gave the group an overview of the events that the Highland Heights Green Task Force has hosted or participated in thus far this year. We have been a busy group and have had some wonderful programs in 2015. We have a few more great ones scheduled through the end of the year as well.

Upcoming Events

  • Great Lake Erie Boat Float –The HHGTF will be participating in this event that will be held on September 12th at Edgewater Park. We will be partnering with FOEC, Soil & Water, Mayfield High School Environmental Club, and North Chagrin Reservation Metropark. It is a great event to attend.
  • Greenwood Farm Fall Fun Fest – Saturday, September 19 from 1-5 at Greenwood Farm.
  • Eco-Fair - October 3rd in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Public Library. Twenty-six environmental groups are slated to participate.
  • October Meeting: Wednesday, October 7th at 7 pm at the Community Center. “Great Lakes Issues” Presenter – Hyle White Lowry, Alliance for the Great Lakes.
  • Holiday Gift/Green Vendor Sale - November 7th, if anyone knows a vendor who would be interested, please let Judy know.
  • End of Year Business Meeting – December 2nd with election of officers.

Overall a lovely evening was had by all. The weather was perfect and the food was delicious! Thank you to everyone for coming and sharing your company and your talents in the kitchen!


Agenda August 5, 2015: Highland Heights Green Task Force Meeting

Greenwood Farm: “Midsummer’s Eve Social @ the Creek”

Judy called the meeting to order and made introductions. We had guests this evening from Greenwood Farm, Friends of Euclid Creek, The City of Richmond Heights, Cuyahoga County Soil and Water District, and the Holden Arboretum. This joint meeting brought many wonderful groups together to share an informative and fun evening.

Attendance was high with approximately 50 people for the event!

Financial Report

Skipped this evening

Website

Our social media numbers keep rising the website – be sure to follow us there at Highland Heights Green as well as on Facebook.

Events

  • Freecycle/E-Waste Drive - June 21st at Highland Heights Community Park was a great success. Use of the pole barn made the rain tolerable. South Euclid Recycled Committee is sponsoring another Freecycle this Sunday, August 9th, at Bexley Park from 9 am-2 pm.
  • Great Lake Erie Boat Float –The HHGTF will be participating in this event that will be held on September 12th at Edgewater Park. We will be partnering with FOEC, Soil & Water, Mayfield High School Environmental Club, and North Chagrin Reservation Metropark. It is a great event to attend.
  • The 4th Annual Gazebo Potluck Dinner and 50/50 Raffle – will be held Wednesday, September 2nd at the Highland Heights Gazebo on Highland Road. This is a zero-waste event!
  • Eco-Fair - October 3rd in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Public Library. Twenty-six environmental groups are slated to participate.
  • Holiday Gift/Green Vendor Sale - November 7th. If anyone knows a vendor who would be interested, please let Judy know.

Our guest speaker this evening was Chad Clink – He is a Community Forester with The Holden Arboretum. He took us on a tour of the property at Greenwood Farm and discussed the many species of trees found there and the special place each plays in the environment. He stressed the importance of biodiversity when choosing trees for both our private properties and for cities during reforestation. Being sure to plant the right tree in the right place is also something to consider. When we finished our walk, we met back at the house for a PowerPoint presentation as well as light refreshments. The presentation gave us an in-depth look at the importance of trees in the urban landscape and how we can all play a part in getting the proper trees into our everyday lives. The long-term payoff for investing in the right types of trees for each location has a huge positive impact on both our economy and health. A lovely evening was had by all.


Agenda June 3, 2015: Highland Heights Green Task Force Meeting

Greenwood Farm: “Midsummer’s Eve Social @ the Creek”

Judy called the meeting to order at 7:10. We went around the room and made introductions. We were joined by two students from MHS, Alan Trester and Rotem Avisar.

Attendance was high with approximately 50 people for the event!

Financial Report

We are financially in good standing.

Membership

40 paid members which means we have met our 2015 goal!!

Website

First time views continue to add up. We discussed adding a tab to the website for people to leave messages/comments. Please “Like” us on Facebook.

Events

  • Faith United Church Spring Farmers Market – June 5th from 4-7pm
  • Pet Day at Greenwood Farm – June 6th
  • Freecycle/E-Waste Drive - June 21st at Highland Heights Community Park
  • Eco-Fair - October 3rd in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Public Library. Twenty-six environmental groups are slated to participate.
  • Holiday Gift/Green Vendor Sale - November 7th. If anyone knows a vendor who would be interested, please let Judy know.

Recent Events:

Gates Mills Environmental Education Center Spring Plant Sale – The event was great and a wonderful time was had by all. We even had a new attendee this evening because of it!

Millridge has planted peas, Indian corn, and pumpkins in the garden.

Plant sitting in the courtyard at the Mayfield High School is going well. Plants chosen to go there are not deer resistant and are safe within the courtyard walls. The MHS Living Lab Project is moving forward with the help of Progressive. This project will allow the students to use the third courtyard for scientific work and experiments.

***Reminder: There is NO meeting next month as we take our July break.

Book Reports

To begin our discussion Alan and Rotem, from the High School, presented us with the project that they have created for use in the 3rd courtyard. They have created a device that uses both science and engineering to determine the temperature, humidity, light, and moisture in the garden. Using the data that they collect from their invention they can assess what plants will grow best in which areas of the courtyard. This can also be used to program automatic watering when it is deemed necessary. Water can be provided by rain barrels and the device can run on solar power allowing for off of the grid use. Progressive is interested in this project and would like to not only help fund it but plans to use the instrument on their campus as well.

Book reports were then given by the members of the group who brought them. The following list is of the books reviewed and they should provide some interesting summer reading.

  • The Teeth of the Lion: The Story of the Beloved and Despised Dandelion by Anita Sanchez
  • No Impact Man by Colin Beaven
  • The Dorito Effect: The Surprising New Truth About Food and Flavor by Mark Schatzker
  • Our Iceberg Is Melting: Changing and Succeeding Under Any Condition by John Kotter and Holger Rathgeber
  • DIY Solar Projects by Eric Smith
  • Schnormeier Gardens: Peace, Harmony & Serenity by Scot E. Long
  • Keep your yard green and our waters clean
  • A legacy of living places
  • Various Children’s Books on the subject of water to go with our 2015 theme

Agenda May 6, 2015: Highland Heights Green Task Force Meeting - Drink Local, Drink Tap

Judy called the meeting to order. Attendance was high – and even included a class of Mayfield High School Students!

Financial Report

We are financially in good standing.

Membership

39 paid members with a 2015 goal of 40

Website

  • 18,803 first time views!!
  • Please “Like” us on Facebook

Events

  • Gates Mills Environmental Education Center Spring Plant Sale - May 15th from 10-4 on County Line Road - stop by our table.
  • Native Plant Sale – North Chagrin Nature Center – May 23rd from 10-4
  • HHGTF Green Book Club Reports – June 3rd
  • Faith United Church Spring Farmers Market – June 5th from 4-7pm
  • Pet Day at Greenwood Farm – June 6th
  • Freecycle/E-Waste Drive - June 21st at Highland Heights Community Park
  • Eco-Fair - October 3rd in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Public Library. Twenty-six environmental groups are slated to participate.
  • Holiday Gift/Green Vendor Sale - November 7th. If anyone knows a vendor who would be interested, please let Judy know.

Recent Events:

  • Hillcrest Hospital Green Task Force Earth Day – Thank you to Deb Harpp and Anna and Ron Hinkle for working the table. Judy met with the Cleveland Clinic Sustainability Officer and we have the potential of partnering for a program with CCF in 2016. A nurse from the Cole Eye Institute won the rain barrel in the raffle.
  • Judy gave a presentation to a class of preschool students at Faith United Church and the Mayfield Citizens Committee. The children planted seeds in toilet paper tube containers.
  • Alan Lorenz sent a thank you to the group for his get-well card and looks forward to seeing everyone soon – hopefully at the Freecycle on June 21st.

Mayfield High School

  • Please consider donating to Creeklife for the MHS bottle filling stations. Any amount would help. They have raised enough money to purchase the first bottle filling station and still have 5 more to go!
  • MHS is “plant sitting” for the plants in the Perkins Wildlife Center that will be displaced during construction at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. Planting took place in the courtyard and consisted of trillium and Cinnamon Ferns. Thank you to Mary and Deb.

Pumpkins and Indian Corn will be planted in the Millridge Garden at the end of May.

Drink Local, Drink Tap

This evening's presentation by spokesperson Brett Wessler included watching Erin Huber’s documentary: “Making Waves – From Cleveland to Uganda”. 783 million people lack access to safe drinking water and every 20 seconds a child under the age of 6 dies from drinking unsafe water. The mission of this organization is to provide rural communities with the tools and knowledge for water sustainability moving forward. Wells have been constructed at schools and local people are taught how to care for them and keep them working. This results in much more accountability and measurable results. The documentary was very moving and the work that Erin and her group are doing is incredibly important and very admirable.


Agenda April 1, 2015: HHGTF Food and Water Watch: Fracking - Alison Auciello - Speaker

Judy called the meeting to order at 7:10. Attendance was high - approx. 40+ people.

Judy passed a card to Alan to let him know that we are thinking of him and that he feels better soon. April program flyers for Greenwood Farm were passed around. Programs are free - donations are always appreciated.

Financial Report

We are financially in good standing.

Membership

39 paid members with a 2015 goal of 40

Upcoming Events:

  • Hillcrest Hospital Green Task Force Earth Day - April 28th from 11-2:30pm. Stop by for a chance to win a rain barrel!
  • Gates Mills Environmental Education Center Spring Plant Sale - May 15th on County Line Road - stop by our table.
  • Freecycle/E-Waste Drive - June 21st at Highland Heights Community Park
  • Eco-Fair - October 3rd in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Public Library. Twenty-six environmental groups are slated to participate.
  • Holiday Gift/Green Vendor Sale - November 7th. If anyone knows a vendor who would be interested, please let Judy know.
  • May 6th Program - Erin Huber - Drink Local, Drink Tap. We will view her documentary “Making Waves”

Millridge Garden Update

Judy met with parent volunteers. Next week she will meet with the school staff.

Mayfield High School

Please consider donating to Creeklife.com for the MHS bottle filling stations. Any amount would help. MHS is considering “plant sitting” for the plants in the Perkins Wildlife Center that will be displaced during construction at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

Speaker This Evening

  • Our speaker this evening was: Alison Auciello. Her presentation was “The State of the State of Fracking”.
  • Alison is an organizer working in Ohio. Her background is in community outreach and fundraising around environmental and consumer rights issues. Before joining Food & Water Watch, Alison worked with Ohio Citizen Action on manufacturing and landfill pollution issues, and most extensively on coal pollution issues. She has contributed to successful campaigns to stop new coal plants from being built in Ohio, advocated for the closure of the oldest and dirtiest coal plants, and worked toward an end to mountaintop removal

For more information about Fracking, from Food and Water Watch click here: Fracking Information

Alison’s contact information is:
Aaciello@fwwatch.org
513.394.62
www.foodandwaterwatch.org


Agenda March 4, 2015: HHGTF Business Meeting

Judy called the meeting to order at 7:05pm.

Financial Report

  • We are well ahead of the game for this time of year and for 2015 generally, so this is great.
  • Judy informed us that she has filed the 2014 taxes for the group.

Millridge Garden and Composting Program

  • Millridge Garden and Composting program is starting to gear up for spring.
  • udy met with the President of the PTO and she produced 9 parent volunteers to help with the composting program.
  • Judy will meet with them to explain how the composting works and to narrow down the number, because 9 folks are a few too many.

Courtyard Project

Corey Rice from MHS came to update us on the Courtyard Project. He expects the project to be tabled until the testing season is done at the high school. The opportunity to “plant-sit” some of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History plants while renovations are done there has been offered. This would be a great way to kick-start using the courtyard as a garden. This would be a 2-year commitment. It will be looked into further.

Environmental Club

  • The students in the Environmental Club have created a Creeklife.com project to fund bottle filling stations at the high school water fountains. Donations can be made on the Creeklife website here - Creeklife
  • Donating is easy and every dollar counts. All members should please consider supporting this cause.

Eco Fair

The Eco Fair is shaping up nicely. Judy has a diverse group of 25 or so organizations who will be on hand at the CCPL, Mayfield Branch (SOM Center Road). This is an exciting partnership between the HHGTF and the Cuyahoga County Library. The event will be held Saturday, October 3 from 11a-3p.

Green Vendors Holiday Gift Sale

All members should keep the Green Vendors Holiday Gift Sale in mind and let any artisans who would be interested in participating know about it. The Cleveland Flea might be a great place to find additional vendors. The event is Saturday, November 7, 2015.

Sign-up sheets were passed around for the Gates Mills Environmental Education Center

Judy let us know that she has heard from our absent member Alan Lorenz. He is feeling better, having missed many meetings while suffering from eye troubles. We wish him a speedy recovery!

Upcoming Events

  • Barb Betz Young Living Essential Oil Party March 30
  • The Board of Directors will meet March 26.
  • Spring Open House May 15
  • Green Book Club Report Meeting June 3.
  • Freecycle/E-Waste Drive will be Saturday, June 21st.
  • The City of Euclid will hold its Garden Tour July 17-19.
  • Euclid Beach Blast – August 1 starting at 4pm. This fun event will feature a sand castle building contest as well as a bonfire.

Anna asked for suggestions to help her husband who works at Hillcrest find a suitable item to raffle off at the Hillcrest Earth Day Green Fair. She is thinking a rain barrel would be perfect. Judy will look into it. The possibility of the HHGTF having a table at the event was also discussed.


Agenda February 4, 2015: “Clean Water 4 All Presentation” Presenter: Judy Dearden, President HHGTF

Meeting was called to order and attendance was very respectable considering the frightful weather. We even acquired a new Member! We went around the table and made introductions.

Financial Report

  • Judy updated us on the funds that have been received thus far and we are ahead of our budgeted income already so that is a good thing.
  • It was mentioned that tax acknowledgement emails have been sent out and that the $20 Membership Fee is not included in these acknowledgements.

Eco-Fair

Plans are going ahead for hosting an Eco-Fair at the Cuyahoga County Public Library in Mayfield Village in the fall. Judy has lined up several groups to be represented at the event. The date is Saturday, October 3rd from 11am - 3pm.

Kimble Garbage Contract

It was announced that the City Council of Highland Heights voted last Tuesday to approve the Kimble garbage contract which will not only save the city significant amounts of money, but will bring the garbage cart system to the city. This has been shown to greatly increase participation in recycling and will be an opportunity for Highland Heights to become an even more green city.

Drink Local, Drink Tap

It was proposed to spend $50 on Erin Huber’s “Drink Local, Drink Tap” documentary video. There was a unanimous vote to do this. We will view this at our May meeting. This will be a step toward creating a video library for the group.

April Speaker

Our April speaker will be Alison Auciello - a spokesperson for Food and Water Watch. She will be traveling from Cincinnati to give her presentation and has asked the HHGTF for travel funds. The amount of $75 was agreed upon and approved via a unanimous vote.

The rest of our 2015 scheduled meeting topics and activities were discussed and reviewed.

Judy sent around a list of former Members to see if any current Members who knew them could reach out to these folks to see why they have not stayed with us and invite them to return to the HHGTF.

Marilyn Wilson handed out the 2015 Calendar of Events for Greenwood Farm. She gave a brief history of the property and the vision for the use of the land and buildings going into the future.

The task list was passed around for people to sign up for committees and volunteering opportunities for various Programs and Events in the upcoming year.

Judy was our esteemed speaker this evening and gave a wonderful presentation that kept with the 2015 theme which is “Clean Water for All“. She gave us recipes and tips to help to replace commercial cleaning and personal care products in our homes with more environmentally friendly ones. This is important to think about because so often using commercial products leads to really nasty chemicals going down our drains and making their way into our watersheds. She included the very informative handout - “DIY recipes for cleaning and personal care that will help keep our waters healthy and clean”. Along with the handout she brought actual products that she uses as visual aids to pass around the room. A wealth of quality information was shared.

The evening was wrapped up with a fun drawing in which one lucky winner took home wash soap and the other a lovely calendar.

Judy mentioned that one of our Members - Barb Betz - is selling essential oils. She would be willing to have a party with the oils for sale if anyone was interested. A sign-up sheet was passed around.


Agenda Jan. 7, 2015: CREEK LIFE - "Fundraising for Outdoor Projects & Awareness", Presenter: Mark Contorno

Judy called the meeting to order at 7 pm. We went around the room and made introductions.

Financial Report

Judy gave a review of the Financial Report as we go into 2015.


Election results from the meeting in December of 2014 were announced. They are as follows:

Officers

  • Judy Dearden – Presiden
  • Rick Evans– Vice President
  • Roy Fash– Treasurer
  • Amy Milroy- Secretary

Directors

  • Frank Sever
  • Al Hess
  • Mary Fash
  • Rick Evans
  • MaryBeth Skala
  • Judy Dearden
  • Maryellen Dombek

A reminder was made that membership dues need to be paid now to keep current.

The binder containing all of the committee information for various activities throughout the year was sent around the room for people to review and sign up.

Eco Fair

  • The idea of hosting an Eco-Fair was presented. This would involve including other groups whose missions are either environmental, eco-friendly, land conservancy or the like.
  • The Cuyahoga County Library in Mayfield Village was suggested as a venue.
  • Judy will look into their interest and availability. We might benefit from the library's publicity capabilities, a drop in traffic from patrons, and an indoor space to not have to worry about the weather.
  • Greenwood Farm was also offered as a possibility. Judy will keep us posted.

Mayfield High School: "Living Lab Courtyard"

  • The Mayfield High School “Living Lab Courtyard” project was discussed.
  • Mr. Rice from the high school came to give us an update on the Environmental Club and teacher interest in the project.
  • Teachers in the Science Wing have been asked to provide “Wish Lists” as to what they would like to see done with the space.
  • Many different areas and groups within the High School could be involved in the development of the space and all students would benefit from it.
  • Judy proposed that the HHGTF donate $500 as money to help get the project rolling. Marilyn Wilson motioned that: “The HHGTF should donate money not to exceed $500 as seed money for the Living Lab Courtyard project”. There will need to be a follow-up with Progressive regarding funds they were interested in granting last year now that there is a project to fund. The Garden Club may be able to donate funds for $1000.00.

Creeklife.com Presentation

  • Finally a presentation by Mark Contorno, founder of Creeklife.com - “Fundraising for Outdoor Projects & Awareness'', was made.
  • Mark has developed a website which may be very useful for us to help raise money for such projects as the above mentioned Living Lab Courtyard project.
  • This site is much like a go fund me or a crowdfunding type of set-up.
  • Going forward his site could be used as a way for the HHGTF to get the local community involved and lend a hand in helping to fund, protect and restore the places we love.