Neighbors helping Neighbors

by Wyndy Bonesteel

After reading the April 2020 edition of the Haw Creek Community Association newsletter, Hawthorne Villages resident Linda Kooiker had an idea. The front page of the newsletter addressed places in the Asheville area that were providing food support due to the hardships that came along with Covid-19. To Linda, this became a call to action to love her neighbors- her immediate neighbors in the Spruce Hill Apartments- and to bring her community together for a common good.

In mid-April, Linda spearheaded a movement in her Hawthorne Villages community and fellow villagers eagerly joined in. Linda contacted Karyn Solomon, the property manager at Spruce Hill Apartments, and offered to fill a pantry with necessities for residents who might be in need. And every Tuesday since then, the Hawthorne Villages residents have filled the backs of a couple of cars and delivered the goods to the Spruce Hill management office.

Since schools were providing breakfast and lunch to school aged children, Linda was concerned about other needs that might be outstanding. Since SNAP doesn’t cover items like paper goods or even diapers, those items are often included in the deliveries. And while canned goods and other non-perishables are weekly additions, Linda and her crew also deliver fresh fruits, vegetables, and even fresh meats. Karyn and her super assistant Emma sort and organize the donations and have created an eye pleasing grocery set up in a small IOx10 room for residents to come in and shop.

*** With the pandemic still causing havoc, Linda and her neighbors decided to do a little more. They organized and provided complete Thanksgiving meals to 15 families in Spruce Hill Apartments.

According to Linda, it’s all very informal. It’s just neighbors helping neighbors.

‘Downtown’ Haw Creek Footbridge

Among the issues your community association is working to address is pedestrian safety, especially where Beverly Rd meets New Haw Creek Rd at PennyCup and Creekside Taphouse. Vehicle parking in the large parking lot off Beverly Rd forces patrons to walk within the roadway where Beverly Rd crosses Haw Creek.

A safer solution is a pedestrian bridge across the creek between the parking lot and businesses. Already in place is a steel structure maintained by AT&T that could serve as a foundation support for the pedestrian bridge.

The Haw Creek Asso. is working with stakeholders–business owners, the City, and AT&T–to build a foot bridge and remedy this pedestrian safety hazard. There are issues to overcome such as flood plain questions, funding, and liability matters. That said, your community association is committed to finding a solution that makes Haw Creek’s “downtown” safer for all residents.

COMMUNITY CALL FOR HAW CREEK AND ITS AREA – Nov 21

Community members have expressed interest in increasing recreational opportunities in the area, we are meeting to discuss building a bicycle pump track in Haw Creek Park.

This message is your invitation to attend this important community meeting, in order to find out more about this proposal, ask questions and participate in the discussion,

Please join us:

November 21st at 11 AM

We will meet at the pavilion of Haw Creek Park, 40 Avon Rd.

Rain or shine.

Social distancing measures will be applied.

We hope you can join us. For any inquiries beforehand you can call Ofri at 917-566 5238

Example of a pump track: