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Halcyon Neighborhood Association E-News 11/4/10

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Items appearing in the HNA E-Update are deemed to be of general interest to neighbors but do not necessarily reflect the views of Halcyon Neighborhood Association (HNA), its Steering Committee, or the Editor. The Editor’s introductory comments express her personal viewpoint.

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1. HNA’s Big Berkeley Project Work Party in the Park, Saturday, November 6, 9 a.m.-2:00 p.m.

2. Disaster Prep: Get Your Fire Extinguisher Checked or Recharged, Saturday, Nov. 6, 11 a.m., Halcyon Commons (RSVP Needed by 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 5!)

3. More Local Honey from Neighborhood Bees Available!

4. Join the Halcyon Safety Walk/Neighborhood Watch Listserv & the Halcyon Disaster Prep Listserv!

5. Free Monthly Tai Chi Practice in the Park, Sunday, November 28, 11 a.m.

6. Crime Watch Tips Related to Recent Burglary Series

7. November Events at Whole Foods Market

8. HNA Planning Meeting for 2011, Sunday, December 5, 4-5:30 p.m.

9. HNA Year-End Fundraising Appeal


Editor’s Introductory Note:


Our Halcyon Halloween was a great success between the well-attended Parade around the park and the Halloween Puzzle hunt. Thanks to the neighbors who took the initiative to organize both events: Susan Snyder and David Mendenhall. And here’s to continuing the tradition next year — a great way to build community!


We have our big work party in the park (with graffiti removal in the surrounding neighborhood) this coming Saturday (see item 1). Also, if you’re interested in having your fire extinguishers checked and possibly serviced (or purchasing a new one), be sure to rsvp by Friday Nov. 5 at 1 p.m. (see item 2)!


Finally, you can see local election results at (updates Friday for races involving instant runoff voting). We just had a hard-fought Council election in District 7 in our neighborhood (current results stand at Worthington, 49.79%; Beier, 35.59%; Rosales, 14.58%). The County is still counting mail-in ballots turned in on election day as well as provisional ballots. If Worthington is still not quite at 50%, the second choices of Rosales voters will be counted Friday (statistically, it’s clear Worthington has won reelection). Thank you to all three candidates — Kriss Worthington, George Beier, and Ces Rosales — for their desire to be of service to the community; being on Council is a low-paying job that requires long hours and unceasing demands, so their willingness to serve deserves praise regardless of the election outcome. The link provided will also give you results on other local measures (Measure R won decisively, as did Measures H & I).


Here’s wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!


—Nancy Carleton, HNA Co-Chair and E-News Editor,



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1. HNA’s Big Berkeley Project Work Party in the Park, Saturday, November 6, 9 a.m.-2:00 p.m.


BIG Work Party in Halcyon Commons & Surrounds

Saturday, November 6, 9 a.m.–2 p.m. (rain or shine!)

Meet at Halcyon Commons (Halcyon Court at Prince Street)

Delicious refreshments (& water) courtesy of Whole Foods Market

Fresh coffee courtesy of Mokka Cafe (Telegraph at Dowling)


Chat with neighbors & UC student volunteers from Cal’s Berkeley Project while we weed, mulch, pick up trash, and remove graffiti in the park and surrounding neighborhood. Please bring weeding and trimming tools (with labels) if you have them (extra tools will be available if you don’t). Let’s get our precious common space ready for the winter months!


Note: If there’s a public area in the larger neighborhood where you’d especially like to see trash picked up or graffiti removed, please consider volunteering for an hour to lead a student crew out to clean it up!


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2. Disaster Prep: Get Your Fire Extinguisher Checked or Recharged, Saturday, Nov. 6, 11 a.m., Halcyon Commons (RSVP Needed by 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 5!)


Editor’s note: Neighbor Kay Trimberger with the Halcyon Disaster Preparedness List has kindly arranged for a company to come to Halcyon Commons (Halcyon at Prince) on Saturday, Nov. 6th to service your fire extinguishers. This is a great opportunity to take care of a chore many of us put off too long! (Stay after and pull a few weeds at our work party; see item e!)


Place: Halcyon Commons Park (expect some chaos: work party happening plus moving van blocking west side of street)

Time: Around 10: 45 or 11 a.m. (be there between 10:45 and 11 a.m. but be patient if there’s a brief wait)

RSVP: BEST needs a count on expected servicing/purchases; please rsvp by 1 p.m. Friday 11/5 to with the number you want checked/serviced and number you anticipate purchasing


The Best Fire Equipment Company will send a truck to Halcyon Court about 10:45 or 11 a.m. on Saturday, November 6th to check, recharge, or replace your fire extinguishers. Another Berkeley neighborhood had a good experience with Best. About half of the 50 fire extinguishers that neighbors brought were found to be in good condition, and the others were serviced or replaced at discount prices. Charges are as follows:


Each fire extinguisher recharge @ $12.95

A new 2-1/2# Amerex fire extinguisher @ $32.00 each (including sales tax)

A new 5# Amerex fire extinguisher @ $43.00 each (including sales tax)

Best accepts checks, Visa & MasterCard.


The industry recommendation is that home extinguishers be checked once per year by a professional. Typical ABC dry powder extinguishers are guaranteed for 6 years, but BEST will look for broken seals, low pressure, or other damage. There’s no charge for this service, only for replacement or recharging.


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3. Local Honey from Neighborhood Bees Available!


Editor’s note: Prince Street neighbor Doug James has another harvest of delicious local honey available.


“I just harvested some more honey from my hives on Prince Street. The bees are now ready for Winter. I am selling pint jars (~1.4 lbs) for $10 each. People interested in purchasing honey can call me at 510-849-1772 or email: I am grateful to all my neighbors who provide flowers year round in their gardens. Our local honey is sweet and fragrant. Thanks, Doug James”


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4. Join the Halcyon Safety Walk/Neighborhood Watch Listserv & the Halcyon Disaster Prep Listserv!


Editor’s note: The HNA E-News offers an edited digest of news that I hope will be of interest to neighbors, but it only comes out once a month (with occasional E-Updates in between). Of course, crimes and other news happen in the interim. The upside to an edited newsletter is it helps neighbors manage the flow of information and prevents the in-box flooding that can come on a listserv. The downside is that you don’t always receive news on a “breaking” basis, and there isn’t the give-and-take and democratic participation of a listserv. This is just a reminder that HNA does have two targeted listserv Yahoo groups — and neither one of them will flood your in-box! — one focused on crime watch (and organizing night-time safety “dog” walks), and the other focused on planning for disaster preparedness. Please email if you’d like to join either or both of these listservs (please include your address and phone along with your email; to maintain everyone’s safety, these are open only to known neighbors). On the crime-watch listserv, you’ll often hear about issues related to crime in advance of the E-News. Out of respect for all participating, the focus is limited on each of these HNA listservs to the primary focus — crime watch or disaster preparedness respectively. Added note: If an enterprising neighbor would like to set in motion a more general listserv for the Halcyon neighborhood (similar to the Le Conte Chat listserv, for example), please let us know and we can spread the word through the E-News! And Halcyon neighbors are welcome on the Le Conte Chat, as our boundaries overlap, and there are many issues in common (


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5. Free Monthly Tai Chi Practice in the Park, Sunday, November 28, 11 a.m.


Free monthly Tai Chi Chih Practice (fourth Sundays at 11 a.m.)

Halcyon Commons (Halcyon at Prince)

Facilitated by Prince Street neighbor Judith Schwartz, 510-843-2062;


Editor’s note: Judith also offers ongoing classes to teach the Tai Chi forms in her peaceful Prince Street gardens; you can contact her for more information.


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6. Crime Watch Tips Related to Recent Burglary Series


Editor’s note: The following message was forwarded from Marcy McGaugh, the Bateman Neighborhood Watch Coordinator, written by Officer Jamie Perkins.


Hello Community Members,


As you may know, there appears to be a series of residential “hot prowl” burglaries occurring on Beats 8 and 9 since early August, 2010. We believe the most recent event was on 10/4/10. Here are some similarities in the cases which lead us to believe they may be connected:


1. The vast majority of residences are two-story, single-family residences, generally the area from Derby south, between Claremont and Telegraph. Some duplexes have been hit.


2. Suspect enters through unlocked, ground floor front, side, or rear door (and in one case, a larger “doggy door”) in at least 13 of 19 incidents.


3. Suspect takes small, easily carried items such as laptops, digital cameras, cash from purses, IPODS, cell phones in 17 of 19 incidents.


4. Most incidents occur during sleeping hours. In those where we know the time (usually because a resident hears someone inside), the times are between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m. We don't know the exact time of occurrence in many of the cases because the resident wasn't awoken.


5. The suspect in one case is described as a black male, 20-40 years of age, wearing a blue hunting-type hat with earflaps, and a dark colored overcoat which extends below his knees. Two cases have suspect descriptions of an unknown race male wearing a hooded sweatshirt. One case's suspect is described as a black male in his 20s, with no further description.


6. The suspect may be on foot, on a bike, or using a car. Two bikes have been stolen during these burglaries.


7. The suspect may be carrying stolen goods in a backpack or messenger's bag, or under an overcoat.


8. The suspect always flees upon contact, or near contact with the resident.


We are devoting officers to specific activities focused on this series, in the area and at the time they seem to be most frequently occurring. Our nighttime patrol teams are aware of this series-and are working hard to bring it to a halt.


We need your help to stop this series! Please share this information with your family, friends, and neighbors in this area:


1. Lock your doors. Above all else, lock your doors. In the vast majority of these cases, the suspect enters through an unlocked door. Victims have given various reasons for leaving their doors unlocked, but it appears that simply locking the doors would stop this particular burglar. Front, side and rear doors-make sure they are all locked before you go to sleep. We see only one entry via force incident in this series, when someone pried a door. It is quite possible that the suspect is only committing burglaries if they can enter through an unlocked door.


2. Report any suspicious activity-including prowling on private property, trespassing, a person knocking on your door during the very early morning hours, or any other person who is in a place they shouldn't be, especially during those early hours. It's possible that a resident who leaves the house early may come across a person casing, coming off of private property, etc. If you see such activity, call immediately to report it, so we can get officers on scene to locate and contact and identify the individual and determine what crime, if any, has occurred. In series such as this, it is not unusual to contact a person whose conduct is suspicious, and subsequently determine they are responsible for other crimes in the series.


3. Keep records of your small electronics’ serial numbers. We need the serial numbers if they are stolen, as they allow us to connect otherwise unclaimed stolen property back to a crime, and hold those found in possession of stolen property accountable. Thieves frequently sell the property they've stolen quickly, so we need to get these into our systems as quickly as possible.


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7. Holiday Tasting Fair at Whole Foods Market


Editor’s note: The following announcement was submitted by Jim Hallock of Whole Foods Market.


Month of Thanksgiving

As dedicated foodies, November is always a special month for us. This is a time when we can give thanks for the bountiful harvest we enjoy. We are thankful that we can help others less fortunate than ourselves through donations to the Alameda County Food Bank. We celebrate our holiday of Thanksgiving with a variety of vegan, organic, alternative and traditional approaches to a meal with family and friends, remembering that every meal has a story. Join us for our tasting fairs for a sample of our “Foodie Favorite” side dishes, the weekends of November 13-14 and 20-21. Most of all, have a happy, safe and delicious holiday, however you give thanks.


Holiday Tasting Fair

11 a.m. – 3 p.m., November 13-14 & November 20-21

Come take a taste of our “Foodie Favorites”, our delicious approach to holiday dinner side dishes, Saturdays and Sundays in November. And of course, we’ll be sampling some mouth-watering turkey as well!

Special hours

To help you with your holiday shopping, we will be open extended hours:

Wednesday, November 24: 7 a.m. – 11 p.m. and Thanksgiving Day 7 a.m. – 2 p.m.

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8. HNA Planning Meeting for 2011, Sunday, December 5, 4-5:30 p.m.


What: Meeting of HNA Steering Committee

Where: 2329 Webster Street (two doors west of Whole Foods)

When: Sunday, December 5, 4-5:30 p.m. (starts and ends promptly)

Agenda: Set HNA events/dates for 2011

See also: HNA’s Guiding Principles on the Halcyon Neighborhood website


Please join us for a meeting focused on setting HNA dates for events in 2011 (including neighborhood/park cleanups, community potlucks, a likely disaster prep drill, and more). New participants welcome! The scope of what we’ll be able to take on in the coming year depends on the number of neighbors willing to help organize an event or two during the course of the year. Putting on HNA events is relatively simple if we have enough folks to help, because we already have a good information-spreading apparatus in place (between the E-News, which reaches over 430, our flyer distribution network, and the neighborhood bulletin board). Come if you’re interested in helping plan an event or two focusing on neighborhood watch (crime watch and/or disaster prep, self-defense training, etc.), cleanups, community building (potlucks, music in park, tai chi in park, etc.), and/or other neighborhood projects such as a multiblock yard sale or play dates for kids of various ages.


Our Steering Committee meets in person just a couple of times during the entire year and consults in between via a listserv group, so being part of it represents a relatively small time commitment, which nevertheless is crucial in holding the container for all we do as a neighborhood organization. Contact halcyon92@gmail.comif you’re able to lend a hand. Even if you can’t make the meeting, you can help out by joining the Steering Committee listserv. We welcome your participation!


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9. HNA Year-End Fundraising Appeal


HNA does not have a formal membership structure or require annual dues because we wanted to keep participation as broad as possible. At the same time, we incur various expenses during the course of a year, including paper for flyers, photocopying and ink cartridges, picnic supplies for events in the park, application fees for permits, and other miscellaneous costs, and at the moment our coffers are depleted. In addition, each year we raise funds to enable us to supplement the supplies in our neighborhood disaster preparedness supply shed (these items are intended to benefit the entire neighborhood in the event of disaster and include first aid, search & rescue, and communications supplies plus items for command center setup in Halcyon Commons park).


There are three ways you can respond to this appeal: (1) Make a financial contribution directly to HNA (not tax-deductible, but allows us maximum flexibility), and mail or drop off your check to HNA Treasurer Susan Hunter, 3044 Halcyon Court, Berkeley, CA 94705; (2) Make a tax-deductible financial contribution with check made out to Berkeley Partners for Parks (BPFP, our nonprofit fiscal sponsor), earmarked Halcyon Commons, and mail or drop off to HNA Treasurer Susan Hunter, 3044 Halcyon Court, Berkeley, CA 94705; or (3) Make a direct donation of any of the items listed in our Disaster Supply Cache Wish List found toward the end of the E-News.


No contribution is too small (or too large!). Our neighborhood association’s health and vitality depend on your ongoing support! And in the event of a big earthquake, some of our lives may very well depend upon it too. Please pitch in!


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