The City of Georgetown will limit outdoor watering to two days per week starting on Monday, October 14.
Last week the Brazos River Authority, which manages the water in Lake Georgetown and Stillhouse Hollow Lake, notified the City of Georgetown that they are enacting a stage 2 drought warning for Lake Georgetown. The river authority is requesting that the City reduce water use due to persistent drought conditions and the declining level of Lake Georgetown. Lake levels throughout the region are lower than they were in the severe drought year of 2011.
Based on the request from the river authority, water utilities that rely on Lake Georgetown will enact phase 1 of their Drought Contingency Plan on October 14. Those four water utilities—City of Georgetown, City of Round Rock, Chisholm Trail SUD, and Brushy Creek MUD—will enact a two-day-per-week watering limit.
The following water use limits will go into effect on Monday, October 14 for City of Georgetown water customers.
For irrigation systems and hose-end sprinklers, landscape irrigation will be limited to a schedule based on the last digit of your address number:
Odd addresses may irrigate on
Tuesday and/or Saturday
Even addresses may irrigate on
Wednesday and/or Sunday
No sprinkler or irrigation system use is permitted on Mondays, Thursdays, or Fridays.
No irrigation Noon to 7 p.m.
Watering with a sprinkler or irrigation system is not permitted from 12 noon to 7 p.m. each day.
Watering with a hand-held hose or bucket can be done any day and at any time. Other outdoor water uses such as vehicle washing or filling a swimming pool can be done any day at any time.
Violations of the irrigation schedule may result in fines.
For assistance in programming your irrigation controller, call (512) 930-3640, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The librarian-and-driver for Georgetown’s colorful bookmobile will now have a helper, thanks to a state grant and the popularity of the little library on wheels.
The Georgetown Public Library received a special projects grant for $75,000 from the Texas State Library and Archives Commission to support the operation of the library’s bookmobile in the next fiscal year. This is the third and final year of funding from the State Library, which has funded the operation of the WOW!mobile since it started rolling through the community two years ago.
During the first two years the grant covered the salary of the community outreach librarian and equipment and books for the program. This year, because the bookmobile service has expanded so dramatically, instead of books the grant will fund a part-time assistant for the librarian.
Michele Harber, the community outreach librarian who drives the bookmobile, is pictured at a recent stop at the Mariposa apartment homes on River Bend Drive. (Click on photo for a larger version.)
The bookmobile now makes more than 70 stops per month at Georgetown’s retirement communities, assisted living and nursing facilities, Head Start, preschools, charter schools, apartment complexes, and even some neighborhoods. During the past year more than 23,000 items were checked out from the mobile library.
The Georgetown Parks Department began deconstructing the Creative Playscape at San Gabriel Park last week. The City is in the process of redesigning and rebuilding the play structure.
But before the work on the playscape started, its tight spaces served as a survival training facility for the Georgetown Fire Department. Last week, Georgetown firefighters completed a multiple-day survival training exercise in which the confined spaces and maze-like configuration of the playscape simulated a collapsed building.
In full bunker gear with boots, helmets, air tanks, and breathing masks covered in translucent wrap to simulate smoke, firefighters followed 200-feet of fire hose that snaked up stairs, over walkways, down a slide, and under confined spaces to get out.
A firefighter’s air tank holds a maximum of 30 minutes of air. If they are breathing hard, they may have less than 10 minutes. A green light on their air pack tells them they are OK. A blinking orange light means they have half of a tank. Blinking red means they have less than 10 minutes before they run out.
Battalion Chief Carl Boatright gives a briefing to a group of firefighters before they each put on their bunker gear and crawl through.
Firefighters must follow the length of hose and are trained to “read” the hose with their hands. At each hose coupling, they can feel “smooth, bump, bump, to the pump” which tells them they are heading the right direction to get back to the fire truck and out of the structure.
A firefighter navigates a loop of hose. This can be an especially tricky place to get turned around and head the wrong way.
A firefighter following the length of hose emerges from a tight spot on the playscape.
Another tight spot.
Wearing an air tank and holding an axe, each firefighter had to pull himself under a cargo net feature while on their back.
Firefighter Price Inman, having made it to the end of the hose and finishing the course, takes off his breathing mask and shares a laugh with Captain David England.
The training was conceived by the fire department after hearing of the impending disassembling of the playscape. The Georgetown Parks and Recreation Department agreed to let the fire department use the structure for training before it was taken down. The training did not damage playscape features like the art wall and murals that are being preserved and repurposed in the new design.
Tragically, firefighters in Texas have attended many funerals this year for firefighters who were lost in building collapses, explosions, and other deadly structure fires. Training may not have saved all those who were lost, but it may save some lives in a critical emergency. That is why the whole department participated in the survival training at the playscape.
Georgetown firefighters and police officers will participate in a memorial stair climb at Georgetown ISD football stadium on Wednesday, September 11. The climb is done each year as a tribute to first responders who lost their lives on September 11, 2001. Participants will climb the equivalent of 110 stories—the height of the World Trade Center towers.
The event begins at 8 a.m. with comments from Georgetown Fire Chief John Sullivan and Georgetown Assistant Police Chief Cory Tchida. An honor guard will post the colors before the climb begins. The flag posted will be the flag of heroes, which contains the names of all the first responders who died on 9/11. Battalion Chief Jeff Davis, a piper with Georgetown Fire Department Pipes and Drums, will play as the climb begins.
FDNY Rescue 4, a fire truck that responded with a crew of firefighters to the World Trade Center on 9/11, will be at the beginning of the Georgetown memorial stair climb event. FDNY Rescue 4 is currently based in Taylor.
The firefighters on the climb will be wearing firefighting gear including boots, helmets, protective pants and jackets, and air packs. Police officers will carry extra tactical gear on the climb. Participants will pause for a moment of silence at the times that each of the World Trade Center towers collapsed.
Georgetown Battalion Chief Carl Boatright, who is coordinating the event, says he expects 30 to 40 climbers to participate, including firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical technicians. Participants will climb the stairs to the top of the football stadium 16 times.
Later in the day on Wednesday, Georgetown firefighters will participate in the annual September 11 commemoration and parade in Taylor.
The Georgetown ISD Athletic Complex, where the stair climb will take place in the morning, is located behind Georgetown High School at 2211 N. Austin Avenue in Georgetown.
Georgetown’s cultural district designation was approved by the board of the Texas Commission on the Arts at their meeting on Thursday in Austin. Georgetown’s was one of five new cultural districts in cities across Texas approved by the commission.
The Georgetown cultural district includes the 40-block area of downtown included in the Downtown Historic Overlay, centered by the Williamson County Courthouse Town Square. Arts and cultural attractions in the district include the Palace Theatre, Williamson Museum, Georgetown Public Library, Grace Heritage Center, downtown art galleries, and shops with hand-crafted items. Other artistic and cultural elements in the district include the Victorian-era architecture around the Square and outdoor public art. The Georgetown Art Center is under construction in the district and will open this month.
Georgetown’s cultural district application earned 930 out of 1,000 possible points from the TCA evaluation panel. Only one other city—Houston—earned a higher score. Evaluators commented that, “Georgetown’s cultural assets are very rich and seem to be growing regularly. The city is building a great public art program, and this will be important in attracting visitors and citizens to the cultural district. The community has a reinvestment zone in place, and this is a key component for development and investment.”
Pictured in the photo taken at TCA board meeting are (left to right) Eric Lashley, Jim Bob McMillan, and Dr. Gary Gibbs. Lashley is the director of the Georgetown Public Library and staff liaison to the Georgetown Arts and Culture Board. Jim Bob McMillan is the deputy director of the Texas Commission on the Arts. Dr. Gary Gibbs is the executive director of the Texas Commission on the Arts.
The cultural district designation will allow Georgetown to apply for grants from the Texas Commission on the Arts. The designation also will be a marketing and tourism tool for Georgetown businesses, nonprofits, and local government.
The TCA has approved 24 cultural district designations in Texas cities, including the five districts approved on Thursday and 19 existing districts. For details, go to www.arts.texas.gov/initiatives/cultural-districts.
This video provides an overview of the Georgetown cultural district.[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NrpwL4IaQSA&feature=share&list=TLZ98XN3K6w7I[/youtube]
Georgetown’s tourism website and Red Poppy Festival website were named the best in the state at a recent tourism conference. The Georgetown Convention and Visitors Bureau won the awards at the annual conference of the Texas Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaus held on August 8.
RedPoppyFestival.com won for best website and VisitGeorgetown.com won for best mobile site. The Judge’s Choice pick for each site was awarded by a panel of tourism experts from across the state. Competition included tourism bureaus in cities of all sizes, including large cities with annual budgets exceeding $1 million. Both Georgetown sites were designed by City of Georgetown Webmaster Erin McDonald and Rhyme and Reason, a design firm in Atlanta. Content for the sites was provided by Georgetown Convention and Visitors Bureau staff.
Pictured left to right are City employees Erandine Lewis, Erin McDonald, Marcy Renneberg, and Cari Miller. McDonald is in public communications and Lewis, Renneberg, and Miller work for the Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The RedPoppyFestival.com and VisitGeorgetown.com sites are among the first in Texas to employ responsive design, which delivers website content optimized for any type of device, including smartphones, tablets, or computers. In recent years there has been a significant increase in mobile users online, which is a key reason for responsive design.
Over a six month period this year, McDonald and Renneberg reworked all the website coding and content, incorporating new images and design elements created by Rhyme and Reason. The new RedPoppyFestival.com and VisitGeorgetown.com sites offer a web experience for mobile devices that equals that of users on computer screens.
In addition to the Judge’s Choice awards, RedPoppyFestival.com and VisitGeorgetown.com each won People’s Choice awards in a popular vote at the conference for best website and best mobile site, respectively. The People’s Choice awards were among convention and visitors bureaus with budgets below $350,000.
The Georgetown Main Street program recently presented checks to reimburse a portion of the cost for new signs at Hummingbird Hollow and Artisans Connect. The Main Street Façade and Sign Fund is a matching grant program for commercial buildings in the historic downtown area.
Hummingbird Hollow is a boutique with gifts, women’s apparel, and accessories at 824 S. Austin Avenue (www.hummingbirdhollow.biz). Hummingbird Hollow received at $500 check for a portion of the cost of new signs. Pictured (left to right) in the photo are Marcy Urban, Cindy Harrington, Jim Wilson, Trisha Tallman, Erland Schulze, David Kellerman, Shelly Hargrove, Julie Laderach, and John Marler.
Artisans Connect Gallery at 122 E. Eighth Street features ceramic, metal, glass, and mixed media pieces as well as paintings and jewelry by Central Texas artists (www.artisansconnect.net). Artisans Connect Gallery received a $500 check for a portion of the cost of new signs. Pictured (left to right) in the photo are Marcy Urban, Julie Laderach, John Marler, Jim Wilson, Trisha Tallman, Diane Gaume, Cindy Harrington, Shelly Hargrove, and David Kellerman.
Sign matching grants are for up to $500 and façade matching grants are up to $10,000 for exterior work on a historic building.
The building facade and signs for Hummingbird Hollow are shown at left.
The storefront and signs for Artisans Connect Gallery are shown below.
Georgetown Main Street promotes historic preservation and economic development efforts in the historic downtown. Main Street is a program of the City of Georgetown Division of Downtown and Community Services.
Learn more at mainstreet.georgetown.org.
The Albertson’s has been sold.
At their regular meeting on Tuesday, the Georgetown city council voted to accept a bid for $3.55 million from M.F. Trinity Management for the former Albertson’s grocery store building. The sale should be finalized in 60 days.
The 56,331 square-foot former Albertson’s building at 610 N. Austin Avenue is at the southeast corner of Williams Drive and Interstate 35. The City purchased the building in 2008 with the intention to use it for a public safety and municipal court facility. That plan changed in 2010 and the City then put the building up for sale in a public bid process.
M.F. Trinity Management has not yet announced the use for the property. More details are expected once the sale is finalized.
The Georgetown Main Street program recently presented checks to reimburse a portion of the cost for new signs at ReImagine and Avalon Monuments. The Main Street Façade and Sign Fund is a matching grant program for commercial buildings in the historic downtown area.
ReImagine is an antique and home furnishings store at 1006 S. Austin Avenue. ReImagine received a $322 check for a portion of the cost of new signs for the business. Pictured (left to right) in the photo above are Janice Jacoby, Marcy Urban, John Marler, Janis Shields, Amneris Castillo, Jim Wilson, and Shelly Hargrove.
Avalon Monuments at 1004 S. Austin Avenue provides custom monuments, headstones, portraits, memorials, and cremation urns, as well as the etching of final death dates (www.avalonmonuments.com). Avalon Monuments received a $500 check for a portion of the cost of new signs for the business. Pictured (left to right) in the photo above are Janice Jacoby, Janis Shields, Cindy Harrington, Lois Townsend, John Marler, Larry Townsend, Jim Wilson, Marcy Urban, and Shelly Hargrove.
The Main Street Façade and Sign Fund provides reimbursement grants to business owners in the historic downtown area for a portion of improvements made to building facades and new signs.
Sign matching grants are for up to $500 and façade matching grants are up to $10,000 for exterior work on a historic building.
Main Street is a program of the City of Georgetown Division of Downtown and Community Services. Learn more at mainstreet.georgetown.org.
A team of four lifeguards – Kate Krause, Madi Smith, Aaron Duke and Hunter Boyd – represented the City of Georgetown as Team Code Red Cross at the State Lifeguard Competition held in Corpus Christi on July 24. These individuals represented the City in a fantastic showing which garnered a second overall finish, coming in only behind Kerrville. Competition was tough as the City of Georgetown faced 12 strong teams from the Woodlands, Frisco, McKinney, Cedar Park, Conroe, Schlitterbahn and Summerland.
Teams competed in four different areas: CPR, First Aid, Spinal Scenario and a group scenario.
To get to the state competition the team had to qualify by placing 1st – 3rd overall in one of the four regional competitions. Regional competitions typically have anywhere from 12-35 teams compete. The City of Georgetown Code Red Cross team came in 1st place overall at the Central Texas Lifeguard Competition held in New Braunfels on July 15 to earn their spot at the state competition.
Congratulations to these four individuals on a job well done!