Earth Day programs focus on Monarch butterflies

The Georgetown Public Library along with the Southwestern University Environmental Studies Program and Smith Library Center are co-sponsoring a group of Earth Day events at the Georgetown library, 402 W. Eighth St.

The library will also host two stand-alone discussions on Barbara Kingsolver’s novel “Flight Behavior.” Southwestern University Economics Professor Emily Northrop and Georgetown Assistant Library Director Sally Miculek will lead a book discussion Tuesday, April 17. The second book discussion Monday, April 23, at 7 p.m. will be led by Smith Library Center Director Carol Fonken and Georgetown Fine Arts Librarian Dana Hendrix.

On Monday, April 30, at 7 p.m. David Wolfe, director of conservation strategies at the Environmental Defense Fund, will present “Monarch Butterflies: Threats and What You Can Do to Help.” Northrop will also present a talk on Tuesday, May 8, at 7 p.m. titled “Reducing CO2 Pollution for Monarchs and Humans.”

For more information, visit library.georgetown.org/flight-behavior.

 

Williams Drive Study projects considered for federal funding

The Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization will host a public meeting Tuesday, April 10, to seek public input on its Regional Arterials Plan and its 2019-22 Transportation Improvement Program, which includes a recommendation for $1.38 million of federal funding for access management improvements on Williams Drive in 2019.

The meeting will be from 4-7 p.m. in the Georgetown Public Library, 402 W. Eighth St.

The projects proposed for federal funding came from the Williams Drive Study adopted by City Council in 2017.

Since the plan’s adoption, the City completed an update to the City’s traffic signal coordination system as well as installed flashing yellow arrows along Williams Drive, from I-35 to Jim Hogg Road to alleviate turning conflicts and improve light wait times.

Work will commence this summer on the Rivery Boulevard extension project and expected to be completed by mid-2019, creating additional connectivity to Northwest Boulevard and eventually over I-35. Recommendations resulting from the Williams Drive Study have been incorporated into the design of Rivery Boulevard. Following the completion of Rivery Boulevard in mid-2019, the City will begin constructing the Northwest Boulevard Bridge, which will provide a parallel route to Williams Drive from Austin Avenue to Lakeway Drive.

The City has begun work to incorporate the land use findings from the Centers Area of the Williams Drive Study as part of the update to the City’s Comprehensive Plan update, which will include additional outreach opportunities.

Visit campotexas.org for more information and to take the online survey. Comments can also be emailed to comments@campotexas.org. These opportunities will be available until Friday, May 11.

Arts and Culture Board seeks mural proposals

The City of Georgetown’s Arts and Culture Board has issued a call for artist proposals for a 21-by-15-foot mural to be located on the building at 215 W. Eighth St. The mural will be on the side of the building that faces Rock Street.

The goal of the mural is to provide public art that represents the City’s vision of “honoring the past and innovating the future.”

The call for art includes a $3,000 award for the artist and up to $1,500 in material reimbursements. Proposals are due by 5 p.m. on April 6. Artists may submit up to two proposals.

The artist will be selected by the Georgetown Arts and Culture Board and the building owner.

For more information about the project, including submittal requirements, go to arts.georgetown.org/call-to-artists-mural-project.

Georgetown Parks and Recreation summer camp registration begins March 26

Georgetown Parks and Recreation will offer a variety of summer camps for area students from June 4-Aug. 10. Resident registration will begin Monday, March 26, and nonresident registration begins Tuesday, March 27.

Age requirements, pricing, and schedules vary for each program. Summer camps are not licensed child care programs. All fees listed are charged per week. Students must have completed Kindergarten to register.

Participants can select from:

  • Art Camp: Ages 5-12; June 25-29, July 9-13, July 16-20, and July 23-27; $175 resident/$220 nonresident
  • Adventure Camp: Ages vary from 11-17 based on program; Weekly sessions offered from June 4-Aug. 1; Rates vary based on program
  • Brandy Perryman Basketball Shooting Camp: Ages 7-16; June 11-14; $225 resident/$280 nonresident
  • Camp Goodwater: Ages 5-12; Weekly sessions offered from June 4-Aug. 10; $140 resident/$175 nonresident
  • Circle of Friends (Adaptive Camp): Ages 13-23; June 18-21, June 25-28, July 9-12 and July 16-19; GISD students only; $135 resident/$170 nonresident
  • Georgetown Leadership Challenge: Ages 14-16; June 25-28; $200 resident/$250 nonresident
  • Hoop Dance Camp: Ages 7-18; July 9-13 and Aug. 6-10; $100 resident/$125 nonresident
  • Junior Fire Academy: Ages 12-14; June 4-8 and June 18-22; $100 resident/$125 nonresident
  • Junior Tennis Academy: Ages 11-18; Weekly sessions offered from June 4-Aug. 10; $100 resident/$125 nonresident
  • Kid City: Ages 5-11; Weekly sessions offered from July 9-Aug. 3; $10 resident/$15 nonresident; Georgetown ISD students only. Child must qualify for free or reduced lunch program within GISD.
  • Lego Robotics and Engineering Camp: Ages 5-14; June 11-15 (morning), June 18-22 (morning), Aug. 13-17 (morning or afternoon); $185 resident/$230 nonresident
  • Let’s Make Friends (Adaptive Camp): Ages 5-12; June 18-21, June 25-28, July 9-12 and July 16-19; GISD students only; $135 resident/$170 nonresident
  • Little Tennis Camp: Ages 5-7: Weekly sessions offered from June 4-Aug. 10; $70 resident/$90 nonresident
  • Sporties for Shorties Camp: Ages 5-10; June 4-8, June 25-29, July 23-27 and July 30-Aug. 3; $115 resident/$145 nonresident
  • Tennis Camp: Ages 7-12; Weekly sessions offered from June 4-Aug. 10; $140 resident/$175 nonresident
  • Volleyball Skills Camp: Ages 7-15; June 18-22 and July 16-20; $100 resident/$125 nonresident

Registration is available online or in person at any of the following locations: Georgetown Parks and Recreation Administration Office, 1101 N. College St.; Georgetown Recreation Center, 1003 N. Austin Ave.; and the Georgetown Tennis Center, 400 Serenada Dr. For more information, visit parks.georgetown.org/camp or call 512-930-3596.

 

Parks and Recreation hosts Eggstravaganza on March 24

The Georgetown Parks and Recreation Department hosts the annual Eggstravaganza Easter egg hunt at San Gabriel Park on March 24.

Children are grouped by age to hunt for candy and toy-filled eggs, including a grand prize golden egg for each age division. Age divisions are age 2 and younger, ages 3-5, and ages 6-8. Egg hunts for age 2 and younger will begin at 9 a.m., ages 3-5 at 9:15 a.m. and ages 6-8 at 9:30 a.m.

The event will also include children’s games and activities, as well as a visit from the Easter Bunny.

The egg hunts will take place across from the Georgetown Livestock Show Barn, and parking is available along Lower Park Road and at the show barn.

For more information, call 512-930-8459 or visit parks.georgetown.org/eggstravaganza.

University Avenue open, utility work completed

Updated, March 3: University Avenue has been re-opened at College and Walnut Streets. The utility work has been completed.

A one-block section of University Avenue will be closed Saturday, March 3, from 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. for water utility repairs across University.

Eastbound traffic on University Avenue will be detoured at College Street and westbound traffic at Walnut Street.

All truck traffic is encouraged to use Austin Avenue and Inner Loop as a detour during that time.

Breakfast Bites: The Underground Creative Community

The next Breakfast Bites meeting on March 7 will feature Cody Miles, president of Brandcave and Ashore, and Rob Redick, president of Daminfine Inc. and Double Wide Decor, on the topic of The Underground Creative Community. The informal meeting starts at 8 a.m. in the Friends Room at the Georgetown Public Library, 402 W. Eighth St. The talk will start at 8:30 a.m. Coffee and light breakfast snacks will be provided. Breakfast Bites is a quarterly meeting of the Georgetown Main Street Program.

Miles and Redick will discuss the often undiscovered creative entrepreneurs in Georgetown, as well as answer questions about what brought them to Georgetown and specifically downtown, what inspires them to create, and what the community can do to encourage more creative small businesses.

Miles is a software entrepreneur and startup enthusiast. He has worked as creative director at one of Dallas’ fastest growing PR firms and marketing director for a national mortgage company. Today, Miles leads Brandcave, a creative agency helping technology companies improve user experience and new customer acquisition. Its clients range from neighborhood pop-ups to Fortune 500 companies.

Redick started making furniture as a hobby in the mid-1990s. In 2000, he started making custom commercial pieces and moved into full-time commercial interiors in 2002. He and his family moved to Georgetown in 2008 and his business operations moved here in 2010. Daminfine Inc. and Double Wide Decor have done the interiors of more than 400 grocery stores, libraries, taco shops, blind stores, state fairs, state buildings, hospitals, coffee shops, and offices.

At the March 7 meeting there will be updates from City staff on:

• Art Center and Public Library events
• Convention and Visitors Bureau updates
• Downtown sales tax trends
• City Hall campus project update
• Historic and Architectural Review Commission end-of-year update
• Planning Department end-of-year update

Also, learn about updates from downtown partner organizations and find out about new businesses in the downtown district that have opened or are under construction.

If you plan to attend, please RSVP by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 6, to Kim McAuliffe, downtown development manager for the City of Georgetown, at (512) 930-2027 or at kim.mcauliffe@georgetown.org.

Flood study public hearing on March 1

A public hearing on the draft results of the Flood Protection Planning Study will be held Thursday, March 1, at 6 p.m. at the Georgetown Municipal Complex, 300-1 Industrial Ave., Georgetown, Texas, 78626. This is the final public meeting for the study.

The goal of the study is to identify areas of flooding and develop mitigation strategies such as drainage maintenance and potential future drainage projects. During the meeting, the consulting engineer Doucet and Chan will present general results of the study and answer questions about the results as well as potential mitigation measures.

The study is a partnership between the cities of Georgetown, Leander and Liberty Hill, as well as Williamson County and the Texas Water Development Board.

For more information, contact Wesley Wright, systems engineering director for the City of Georgetown, at (512) 931-7672 or at Wesley.Wright@georgetown.org.

To see a copy of the draft flood study results, visit files.georgetown.org/flood-protection-planning-study.

Georgetown named as finalist in Bloomberg Philanthropies’ 2018 Mayors Challenge

Georgetown is one of 35 Champion Cities selected this week as finalists in the 2018 U.S. Mayors Challenge, a nationwide competition that encourages city leaders to develop innovative ideas that confront challenges facing their cities. Georgetown was selected as a finalist amongst more than 320 applications.

The City now advances to the six-month “Test, Learn, and Adapt” phase of the competition. Cities will refine their ideas during this process with up to $100,000, as well as personalized support from innovation experts, to test and begin building support for their urban innovations and submit a new application in August 2018. In October, four cities will receive $1 million awards and one will receive a grand prize of $5 million to bring their ideas to life.

“We received hundreds of bold and creative ideas from cities around the country in response to the 2018 Mayors Challenge, and these 35 really stood out for their potential to improve people’s lives. The next six months are a great opportunity for the cities to test their ideas and make them even more innovative and effective,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and three-term Mayor of New York City.

The 35 Champion Cities performed the best against four key criteria, including vision, potential for impact, implementation plan, and potential to spread to other cities. A prestigious selection committee co-chaired by former Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and former Xerox Chairman and CEO Ursula Burns and comprising distinguished policy experts, artists, academics, business executives and social innovation leaders assessed the applications.

Georgetown’s innovative idea involves developing the “virtual power plant.” While Georgetown is the first and largest city in Texas to secure 100 percent of its purchased power from renewable sources, there are cost uncertainty and reliability concerns related to transporting that energy over long distances. The City of Georgetown hopes to be able to lease rooftop space on residential and commercial properties to install solar panels that will generate enough energy to offset the need to purchase power from outside sources in this completely renewable energy-powered city.

“The City executed purchased power agreements to cover Georgetown’s energy usage with 100 percent renewable energy, making Georgetown one of the largest city-owned utilities to do so,” Georgetown Mayor Dale Ross said. “The media coverage that followed this announcement was seen by more than two billion people. I welcome this opportunity to blaze the next renewable energy trail.”

For more information, please visit bloomberg.org.

Candidates file for City Council election in May

The candidate filing period for the City Council District 1 and 5 elections in Georgetown on May 5 ended today at 5 p.m. Incumbent Anna Eby and Mary Calixtro have filed for District 1, and Kevin Pitts has filed to run in District 5. Incumbent Ty Gipson announced he would not seek re-election in the District 5 race.

To see maps of council districts, go to maps.georgetown.org/council-district-maps.

Georgetown City Council members serve three-year terms representing one of seven single-member districts.

The last day to register to vote in the May election is April 5.

Early in-person voting is April 23 through May 1. In the Early Voting period, voters may cast ballots at any Early Voting location in Williamson County.

On Election Day on May 5, voters may cast ballots at any vote center location in Williamson County. Polling places, dates, and times will be listed at wilco.org/elections.

For details about the city election, contact Shelley Nowling, city secretary for the City of Georgetown, at Shelley.Nowling@georgetown.org or (512) 930-3652.