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Halcyon Neighborhood Association E-News 12/3/10

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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 EditorÕs introductory comments express her personal viewpoint.

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

2. HNA Year-End Fundraising Appeal

3. Potluck Hosts Sought for 2011

4. More Flyer Distributors Needed for 2011

5. Free Monthly Tai Chi Practice in the Park, Sunday, December 26, 11 a.m.

6. Crime Watch Updates: Garage Burglary, Car Break-ins, Laptop ÒSnatch and GrabÓ at Mokka, Burglary Prevention Tips, Crime Reduction Links

7. Neighborhood Watch Tips from Karl Reeh: Light the Night!

8. December Events at Whole Foods Market

9. Ed Roberts Campus Now Open!

10. Yellow Emperor Community Acupuncture Clinic Featured in Chronicle Article

11. Link on How to Recycle Batteries

12. Wheeler Street Neighbor Passes on Information on Reopening the Parkway Theatre

13 Halcyon Neighborhood AssociationÕs Guiding Principles

14. Request for Old-Style Blue Recycle Containers


EditorÕs Introductory Note:


Thanks to Berkeley Project and neighborhood volunteers, who made our big work party in November such a success; we weeded and mulched Halcyon Commons and weeded nearby planted features on Prince, Halcyon, and Webster, plus removed graffiti in the larger neighborhood. Generous donations from Whole Foods Market and Mokka CafŽ kept us all well fueled. Photos are posted at HNAÕs Facebook group page! A number of neighbors also took advantage of the opportunity to get their fire extinguishers recharged or to purchase new ones. This was a popular service, so weÕll plan on doing it again next spring to encourage more neighbors to get prepared in this way. Thank you to Prince Street neighbor Kay Trimberger for taking the lead on this!


Our final event of the year is this SundayÕs HNA Planning Meeting for 2011 (see item 1); the Steering Committee is open to anyone whoÕs willing to pitch in to move neighborhood projects forward in the spirit of HNAÕs Guiding Principles (published here in item 13 and always available at the HNA website). WeÕd very much welcome having some more of you join us!


Keep in mind that our ongoing work to make this a safer and more convivial neighborhood depends on each one of us pitching in during the course of the year. Thank you to neighbor Mary Stoker for responding to last monthÕs fundraising appeal. It would be great if more of you could join her this month (see item 2)!


The next E-News will be coming out the week of January 3, so email your news before then. Meanwhile, happy holidays to all!


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



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


What: Meeting of HNA Steering Committee (Crime Watch and Disaster Prep members especially welcome!)

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: HNAÕs 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 weÕll 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 youÕre 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 if youÕre able to lend a hand. Even if you canÕt make the meeting, you can help out by joining the Steering Committee listserv. We welcome your participation!


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2. HNA Year-End Fundraising Appeal


HNA doesnÕt 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 on our HNA website at


No contribution is too small (or too large!). Our neighborhood associationÕs 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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3. Potluck Hosts Sought for 2011


EditorÕs note: HNA Potluck Coordinator Tory Finn submitted the following message.


HNAÕs January Post-Holiday ÒProgressive PotluckÓ is one of my favorite neighborhood events; next year itÕs on Sunday, January 23. In the Progressive Potluck we ÒprogressÓ from house to house for each course; itÕs a great way to meet our neighbors and enjoy the community we so value in the Halcyon neighborhood.


If you havenÕt hosted before, please consider being a host for one course; itÕs a great — and easy — way to participate in the community. We need to identify a total of THREE or possibly FOUR hosts (Appetizers, Salad, and Main Course; traditionally, Dessert is at John and MichelleÕs house unless someone else is eager for the opportunity). Hosts usually provide paper plates, cups, napkins, etc., and one dish for the course they host, but other people can help with those resources if needed (and your neighbors will be bringing dishes to share based on letter assignments to be posted prior to the event).


Please contact me if youÕre interested in hosting one of the courses on January 23 — even if youÕre not sure whether you can or if you want more info. Also let me know if youÕd like to be on the list as a potential potluck host for one of our quarterly potlucks later in the year. Thank you, and I look forward to seeing you all on January 23!


Tory Finn

c. 510-230-8143; 510-230-8143  


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4. More Flyer Distributors Needed for 2011


EditorÕs note: The neighborhood volunteers who agree to drop off HNA flyers four to six times during the course of the year make it possible for us to highlight important events, share disaster preparedness information, and reach out to new neighbors and those who donÕt have email. Our flyer distribution network allows us to reach over 860 households, but only takes each volunteer 20 or 30 minutes to do a designated stretch. Some of our distributors need to take a break after several years of service, so we have a few gaps that need coverage. This is a great way to give back to the neighborhood with a relatively small commitment of time. Please email if youÕd be willing to take on a stretch for 2011 (or if youÕd be willing to act as an alternate when a regular distributor is out of town), and IÕll pass your contact information on to our Flyer Distribution Coordinator, Jay Migliaccio. This is also a good time to say thank you to the entire team, including Jay Migliaccio, Dawn Rubin, Mark Foy, and Nancy Carleton, as well as all the distributors!


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5. Free Monthly Tai Chi Practice in the Park, Sunday, December 26, 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;


EditorÕs 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 Updates: Garage Burglary, Car Break-ins, Laptop ÒSnatch and GrabÓ at Mokka, Burglary Prevention Tips, Crime Reduction Links


EditorÕs note: A Wheeler Street neighbor reported the following:


ÒWe had a burglary into our garage sometime between Monday night Nov. 15 at 9 p.m. and Saturday morning Nov. 20 at 11 a.m. They did not break into our house, but instead into our detached garage.  They were able to pry off the lock latch from the side of the garage (attached with screws into the wood framing); because they took off the entire piece opposite the padlock, they did not need to break off the padlock we had on there. And they closed this big garage door back up after leaving, so since we donÕt go into the garage that much during the week, weÕre not exactly sure when this occurred. Normally we have our car parked in front of the garage door (so the door wouldnÕt open), but right now weÕre working on some landscaping, and have the car on the street rather than in the driveway. We have now placed two latching locks inside the garage, so that eliminates another way for someone on the outside to break things and get in. And weÕre watching out for other security items where it could be relatively easy for the screws to be just pulled out of old wood. They took one bike and some power tools.Ó


EditorÕs note: While I didnÕt receive formal reports on these incidents, I saw evidence of a car break-in on Fulton at the corner of Prince, as well as a notice posted on Prince and Woolsey related to a Thanksgiving weekend car break-in on the 2100 block of Prince. So another reminder: DonÕt leave valuables visible in your car, and please report suspicious behavior when someone seems to be casing cars or property — day or night!


EditorÕs note: A laptop computer Òsnatch and grabÓ took place at Mokka CafŽ took place on November 11 (information forwarded from the Bateman list, and then from Marcy McGaugh, Bateman Neighborhood Watch Coordinator).


ÒThere was a strong-arm robbery in Mokka this afternoon. A man came in and grabbed a womanÕs laptop from her as she was using it. He then ran to a waiting pickup truck, which sped off.Ó


ÒPerpetrator is an African-American male in his 20s who was wearing a gray hoodie and gray pants. He was working in concert with another individual, not described. The truck used in the crime was a navy blue Chevy S10, small, with an open bed and a lumber rack. There was something in the bed that caught a witnessesÕ attention, but they werenÕt able to say for sure what it was. This crime is characterized by the police not as a strong arm, but as a Ôsnatch and grab.Õ It wasnÕt clear whether anyone was actually using the computer at the time it was snatched, but according to the officer who described the crime, the laptop was Ôout.ÕÓ


EditorÕs note: Update and home-security tips from Officer Phillips of Area 3:



During the month of October, Area 3 was hit pretty hard with robberies and burglaries. We had a total of 11 robberies and 25 burglaries between Beats 4, 5, 10, 11, 12. Of the 11 robberies, 9 of them were pedestrian robberies and the other 2 were commercial robberies. (Four of the robberies have been closed out by arrests). As for the burglaries, there were 20 residential burglaries and 5 commercial burglaries. About half of the residential burglaries could have been prevented, as the suspects gained entry into the homes via unlocked doors and windows. (The burglaries and robberies were widespread throughout Area 3 and not focused in any specific neighborhood.) As you all know, most burglaries can be prevented by taking a few simple steps to properly secure your home.



¥ Exterior doors should be strong enough to withstand excessive force.

¥ All exterior doors should be secured with a deadbolt lock that has a minimum one-inch throw.

¥ All strike plates and frames for exterior doors should be anchored to the home's main construction.

¥ All exterior doors should fit snugly against the frame and all frames should be free of warping, cracks, and other signs of wear and tear.

¥ The main entrance door should have a door wide-angle (180 degree) viewer/peephole.

¥ Sliding glass doors and windows should be secure against forcing the locks or from being lifted completely out of the frame.

¥ High-risk windows (basement, garage, ground-level, partially or totally secluded, latched, etc.) should be secured sufficiently enough to discourage or impede possible intrusion.

¥ Double-hung windows should be secured with pins or extra locks to discourage prying.

¥ Trees and shrubs should be trimmed to allow visibility along the perimeter (particularly entries) of the house.

¥ Timers (both interior and exterior) should be installed to activate lights in your absence

¥ All entrances (doors and windows) to your home should be well lit at night.

¥ Your address should be posted on your house and be clearly visible from the street both night and day.

**Always remember to report suspicious activity and suspicious persons to the police immediately.


Berkeley Police Non-Emergency: 510-981-5900

Berkeley Police Emergency # for cell phones: 510-981-5911



Community Services Bureau – Officer Phillips # 90


EditorÕs note: ItÕs natural that by passing on crime-watch reports, the focus tends to be on the bad news concerning burglaries, car break-ins, and so on. So itÕs good from time to time to step back and hear some of the good news, which includes a reduction in most categories of crime over the last five years, as referenced at the two links below.

ÒThe year-to-date crime report, which is usually a quarterly report, updated the Council on the progress of the Police Department under new police chief Michael Meehan. Overall, crime has decreased significantly over the last five years, with a notable decrease in the eleven months that Meehan has been chief. The report cited new programs and policies such as Crime Analysis and Response Strategies (CARS) and a focus on crime as causes of the impressive crime reduction.Ó

ÒThe data — made public last Thursday — showed a decrease in the number of major crime incidents between 2009 and 2010 for the first nine months of each year, marking at least the sixth year in a row such a decrease has occurred, according to crime reports issued by the department. . . . The number of violent crime incidents decreased by 17 percent between 2009 and 2010 for the nine-month period, while property crime decreased by 7 percent. The reductions include decreases in the numbers of homicides, rapes, robberies, aggravated assaults, larceny and auto thefts. Burglary was the only listed crime to increase, by 6 percent.Ó


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7. Neighborhood Watch Tips from Karl Reeh: Light the Night!


EditorÕs note: Le Conte Neighborhood Association President Karl Reeh posted the following suggestions regarding adding more light to our neighborhoods at night.


Lighting the Way to a Brighter, Safer Neighborhood


1. Illuminate: Porch Lights (front, side & rear), House Numbers, Flood Lights: Driveway? Motion Activated? Indoor lights on timers.


2. Become a ÒTorch BearerÓ: Get Bright LED Flashlight. Use IT! (When walking, it signals to others that youÕre paying attention!) [LED Flashlight Breakthrough in price! Buy for your family & neighborhood groups. OHS is currently selling a 4-pak of 9 LED Flashlights for $4.99. (Previously $6.99 for one.) Requires 3 AAA batteries. Pocket/purse size, water resistant, no profit to me!]


3. Indoors: Store a working flashlight in EVERY room. Install automatic backup lights in bathrooms and bedrooms. Try to ALWAYS have a flashlight with you, for keys, DARK theaters, and FACES!


4. Indoor/Outdoor: Garden beds (SOLAR, Low-wattage LED lights). Leave a light on in one or more rooms visible from the street. Upstairs bedroom; Vacant room; back/side yards.


5. Examples of extra lighting on our block: Outlined entry archway with clear lights; String of holiday white lights through front bushes; Orange LED lights up a tall bamboo pole. Make yours even more interesting!


6. Bonus: To help balance the additional energy you will be using with any of these additional lights, I will suggest a way to save energy in the use of your refrigerator: Lighting: Check to see if you have an Òappliance bulb*Ó 40 watts? Replace it with a 15 watt bulb (same size, cheaper, longer lasting). Less heat, enough light.* Appliance bulb required ONLY for oven & freezer, not refrigerator. Heat/Cold range: Oven 600 degrees/Freezer-30 (Fridge 35 degrees)


Cheers, Karl Reeh


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8. December Events at Whole Foods Market


EditorÕs note: The following announcement was submitted by Jim Hallock of Whole Foods Market. This is a good time to thank Whole Foods Market for supporting our HNA work parties and special events in the park over the past year with generous donations of food and beverages. We very much appreciate it! ItÕs also a good time to point out progress made as a result of our meetings every few months to resolve issues of mutual concern. In particular, weÕre thrilled that at long last that thereÕs a stop sign at the exit from the parking lot on Webster, which we hope will contribute to pedestrian safety, as well as a ÒNo SmokingÓ sign along the Webster Street frontage. We also appreciate the progress Whole Foods has made in addressing noise and lighting concerns and look forward to continuing to work in the coming year to facilitate communication and resolve issues as they arise.



We continue to celebrate the holiday season through December. Last year our customers donated $9,978 and 3,379 pounds of food to the Alameda County Food Bank, making Whole Foods Market in Berkeley one of the largest collection centers. WeÕre working on breaking records this year, with a food donation drive on Sunday, December 19. Kids who donate food will get a treat from Santa. WeÕll also be offering free tastes of our holiday meals on the weekends of the 11th-12th and 18th-19th. We also celebrate Hannukah starting the 2nd, Islamic New Year the 7th, the Solstice on the 21st, Christmas the 25th, Kwaanza the 26th and New YearÕs the 31st. However and whatever you celebrate, we hope you make the most of it. Thank you for including us in your holiday plans, and please have a safe and wonderful season of celebration!


Holiday Tasting Fair

11 a.m. – 3 p.m., December 11-12, November 18-19

Come take a taste of our ÒFoodie Favorites,Ó our delicious approach to holiday dinner side dishes, two weekends in December.


Come see Santa and donate food!

Sunday, December 19: Party 11a.m. - 3 p.m.; Santa, Noon – 2 p.m.

Kids! Santa will be arriving here from noon to 2 p.m. on Sunday, December 19th! Come sit on his lap and tell him your wishes and have your free portrait taken. Bring an item of food for donation, and get a treat from Santa. While youÕre here, you and your parents can taste free samples from our holiday dinner menu and listen to live music and carolers.


Special hours: Please note our special hours during the holidays:

Thursday, December 23, 8 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Friday, Christmas Eve, 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Closed Christmas Day so our Team Members can celebrate with their friends and families.

New YearÕs Eve, 12/31, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.

New YearÕs Day, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.                                              


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9. Ed Roberts Campus Now Open!


EditorÕs note: The Ed Roberts Campus is open at last, along with BORP!


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10. Yellow Emperor Community Acupuncture Clinic Featured in Chronicle Article


EditorÕs note: The Yellow Emperor Community Acupuncture Clinic on Shattuck between Prince and Woolsey was featured in this San Francisco Chronicle article on businesses with sliding-scale pricing.


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11. Link on How to Recycle Batteries


EditorÕs note: Along with the article, the comments section contains some good tips on recycling or properly disposing of problematic items.


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12. Wheeler Street Neighbor Passes on Information on Reopening the Parkway Theatre


EditorÕs note: Since one of our neighbors, Ros Harder, is involved in this effort, IÕm passing on this information even though it relates to a business outside our immediate neighborhood.


Dear Friends and Neighbors:


If you ever went to the Parkway ÒSpeakeasyÓ Theater in Oakland you know how special a place it was.  So IÕm sending this far and wide to help bring this iconic venue back into being.


Whether youÕre local and want to enjoy pizza and beer in a movie theater furnished with couches, a potential investor in a promising business, or a general supporter of alternatives to mainstream monoculture, please consider supporting this project.


J Moses Caeser is a friend as well as a successful entrepreneur. Check out his bio and the project info at




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13. Halcyon Neighborhood AssociationÕs Guiding Principles


HNA is a community group dedicated to stewardship of the Halcyon Neighborhood in South Berkeley (bounded by Telegraph, Ashby, Adeline, and Woolsey). We encourage positive, proactive, partnership-oriented approaches to improving the well-being of our neighborhood, with an emphasis on the following goals:


     * Community building (such as regular potlucks, special events in the park, mutual support among neighbors, and multiblock yard sales);

      * Ongoing care of Halcyon Commons (a park conceived of and created by the neighbors who founded HNA) under the nonprofit umbrella provided by Berkeley Partners for Parks and in partnership with the City of Berkeley;

     * Continued greening and care of the neighborhood (planting trees, cleaning litter off streets, graffiti removal, and helping maintain public landscaped features);

     * Strengthening neighborhood watch (crime watch, community safety walks, emergency preparedness, and disaster supply cache);

     * Networking with the larger Berkeley community (nearby neighborhood groups, neighborhood businesses, City staff, and elected officials);

     * Sharing information and empowering residents to become proactive in addressing neighborhood needs and in expressing individual viewpoints regarding civic affairs (spreading news through meetings, flyers, and the HNA E-News, and providing contact information).


To fulfill these goals, HNA provides a sanctuary from partisan politics so that neighbors with diverse viewpoints feel welcome to participate. Thus, HNA only takes stands on larger issues when there is near-unanimity among neighbors. By focusing on immediate local concerns, we find we can have a greater impact and get better results from the time we invest.


Guided by these principles, HNA invites neighbors who are willing to work together in a spirit of partnership to participate at whatever level makes sense for them. Opportunities for serving on our volunteer Steering Committee and project-oriented committees are available to neighbors who are willing to roll up their sleeves and work together in a nonpartisan spirit. Neighbors are invited to step forward into leadership positions defined by the work they do in accordance with HNAÕs primary goals and guiding principles.


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14. Request for Old-Style Blue Recycle Containers


EditorÕs note: If you still have an old-style blue recycle container that you arenÕt using but havenÕt yet gotten rid of, HNA could use a few more. They are very useful for our work parties when weÕre gathering weeds or distributing mulch. Either drop the container off on the side of the driveway to the left of the house at 3044 Halcyon Court (across from the park) or email and one of us will pick it up to add to our work party supplies. Please donate containers that are in good condition only (i.e., no cracks). Thank you!


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