A time for reflection – then plowing ahead:
It was a bit of an emotional week to say the least. I posted last week’s column right on the heels of Rosh Hashanah, and this week’s comes on those of Yom Kippur. For many of us that alone is cause to reflect. Then of course it was 9-11 -- this guy I’m working with on a deal wouldn't sign the papers Wednesday because of the date (and since the offer expired Friday the 13th, he felt pinched in a “superstition bind”). Then I ran into Jim Welte (and his daughter) at temple Saturday, and Jim told me he’s been laid off by this very Patch, and so that tore me apart as he’s the reason I chose to go here, and not anyplace else, with this column. (Jim encouraged me to continue here for the next three months since my audience is apparently still good; I wouldn’t know – I just write.)
But today’s a new day. And I don’t dwell much in the past anymore. Oh don’t get me wrong - I used to quite a bit. Loved dwelling there. Wallowed in it. But I’ve come to realize that it’s such a waste of time for my personality. Besides: no amount of prayers can ever change it. You need to press ahead, shake off the superstitions and ghosts, put on your armor, and head towards the sunlight. Which is why I have particularly enjoyed the General Plan work over the past two years – it’s so forward looking. And frankly that’s why I love Rosh Hashanah & Yom Kippur – a new year, a fresh start, green-field ahead.
So, this brings me to the most important thing coming up this week: the Council’s final review (and hopefully approval) of the MV2040 General Plan. Jim McCann, our thoughtful City Manager, tells us this is probably the most important thing any of us will do as Council members. Our (maybe only?) public hearings are set for Monday (730 PM at City Hall) and then on September 30. We’ve had about 50 meetings leading up to these two sessions. Thank you all for your support. Read all about it here: Two years in the making, the MV2040 General Plan - come and get it!
Small Town Character: You know I’m stuck on this topic simply because despite the significant change many have seen in Mill Valley, we all still appreciate its small town character. As two readers commented last week (in different ways, but on the same theme): we just need to remember to look for it. “We get tied up in our hectic schedules and just forget to stop and look now and then.” I agree. Small town character is waiting to be found. Did you see the mailbox filled with dog treats? What about the water offered by one resident adjacent to a trailhead? How about the fact you can call your Fire and Police Chiefs, or Mayor – on their cell phones? Ribbon Cuttings, parades, book sales, steps, lanes and paths. Fruit, vegetable and lemonade stands. Just Find It!
Fall Arts Festival: The 57th Annual Mill Valley Fall Arts Festival is next weekend (September 21 and 22) and will showcase over 140 fine artists from all across the country as well as live music, children’s entertainment and good beer. The juried works include prints, jewelry, paintings, woodwork, photography and sculpture. The festival is rated one of the top 10 fine arts and crafts shows in the Northwest. Join us for this beloved Mill Valley tradition.
Street Rehabilitation Plan Update: I have this revolving door of questions & complaints about ongoing infrastructure repairs around town; they never end. Well, we’re actually pleased to announce the completion of the East Blithedale rehab project, which began on June 24. Now we can get to work on Miller Ave. (a 3-year project), only to return to Blithedale for its final rehab work in a few years (knowing it’s going to take a beating while Miller’s undergoing surgery). Miller Ave. work will begin next spring – so get ready. But Miller’s going to be great as that arterial needs new paving, grading, and drainage, multiple safety enhancements, new bike lanes, smooth sidewalks, real crosswalks, upgraded transit stops, better parking, cleaner travel lanes, and enhancements to the street's functionality in general as a shopping and gathering destination spot.
City of Mill Valley Organization Chart: I really like our new online Org Chart. I hope you do too: Check Us Out. Scroll down to our 7 department heads – these folks are just great resources, and deserve a HOORAY!
Shout out for David & Elaine Freed: I ran into David & Elaine a few times this summer and learned they just celebrated 50 years of marriage. Now that’s an accomplishment; that’s worth dwelling on. Congratulations to you both!
Monday Night Madness: Bogart or Berman?
· A Night at the Movies: The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948) -- 730 PM at the Library.
· A Night in the Chambers: City Council Meeting (2013) -- 730 PM at City Hall.
· World Literature Book Club - The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa (7 pm at the Library)
· Chamber Ribbon Cutting (430 PM at Guide Boat Inc. at Mill Valley Lumber): Join me for a good-ole' fashioned Ribbon Cutting sponsored by the MV Chamber at this very historical location.
· MVMS Back-to-School Night (630 to 830 at MVMS): Parents only please. Also remember that with over 1000 students, parking is always a challenge. Please consider walking if that’s an option, or parking and walking from the Community Center parking lot.
· Playwriting Workshop (7 pm at the Library): Learn how to outline and structure your own ten-minute play. After writing the play at home, you will have it read aloud in class and benefit from constructive group critique. Click here for more information: Workshop.
· SASM Board Meeting: 7 pm at “The Plant” – I’ll be there!
· Friends Book Sale (9 to 430 PM at the Library): Come support the The Friends of the Library (who by the way have donated about $1.5 million to date).
· City Councilmember's Table on the Plaza (10 AM at the Depot). Join my good friend and colleague, Ken Wachtel, along with the candidates running for Council this fall.
· GET READY (10 AM at the Community Center): GET READY is a free 90 minute class (sponsored by the Mill Valley and Southern Marin Fire Departments) that teaches you how to prepare your home and family for all types of emergencies.
· Beyond the Book Bash (7 pm at the Library): A fantastic evening of entertainment, food, libations and music. MC Josh Healey will host the evening along with acclaimed guests including New York Times best-selling author Mac Barnett, Sundance Fellow Playwright Chinaka Hodge, author Glen David Gold, and singer/songwriter James Nash to share their talents and celebrate the Library. Buy Tickets!
· FURTHUR: Red Rocks Amphitheater (7 pm).
Thanks, as always, for reading. Full steam ahead.