On August 6th, South Cumminsville residents celebrated the renovation of the Wayne Playfield on Beekman Street. The renovations include two rehabbed baseball fields, including bleachers, a scoreboard, and a homerun fence, an extended football field, and painted playground equipment.
These renovations were made possible through the volunteer efforts of 400 Procter & Gamble employees and the Cincinnati Reds Community Fund. The South Cumminsville Community Council worked with the Cincinnati Recreation Department to make the park improvements as part of the council’s plan to revitalize the Beekman Street corridor.
“We are thrilled to welcome the Reds Community Fund and Procter and Gamble to South Cumminsville,” said South Cumminsville Community Council President Marilyn Evans. “This project will help us achieve one of the objectives in our community plan—to improve our existing green space and to make our park more user friendly.”
The South Cumminsville Community Council is working to accomplish a 5-year community plan to improve living conditions in the neighborhood and to attract businesses to the area. In 2013, the South Cumminsville conducted a walkability study for the Beekman Street corridor. The South Cumminsville Action Team has worked with the City to implement street-calming measures to improve the area for pedestrians. Other aspects of the plan include attracting job-training opportunities and businesses to the area, creating home ownership opportunities, and creating buffer zones between heavy industry and residential areas.
“This project is right on time,” said Evans. “We are getting a new bathroom facility in the park, an expanded football field, and now the Reds and P&G are helping us get a premier baseball field. The additional landscaping along Beekman will make our park one of the best in the city, and it will go a long way to promote the community’s vision for the Beekman corridor.”
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The South Cumminsville Action Team is a group of concerned residents and their partners working together to make South Cumminsville stronger, safer, healthier, and more economically and environmentally sustainable.Community leaders and partners are developing solutions and taking action. Two early priorities of the team’s work include:
- Ensure safety of children walking and biking to/from Wayne Playfield by slowing down traffic on Beekman between Elmore and Dreman.
- Provide safe crossings for children, seniors and people with disabilities to cross at main intersections and destinations.
In support of these goals, the Action Team has accomplished a lot in the last year:
- Tree removed and sidewalk replaced on Beekman Street at Garfield Apartments. This sidewalk is now wheelchair accessible.
- Sidewalk between Mr. Gene’s and Fey’s Market – tall weeds have been cut and trees trimmed back. (Includes city-owned and private property.)
- Llewellyn Avenue Street sign has been replaced at Dreman Ave.
- Pedestrian signal at the corner of Dreman Ave and Beekman St. was updated to increase the amount of time to cross and includes a count-down signal.
- ODOT has agreed to keep Prang Street open. The traffic will be restricted to right hand turns from Prang to Elmore and right hand turns from Elmore to Prang.
- Signage on Llewellyn at corner of Elmore – “No trucks over 4 wheels”.
- Permanent lane striping with two lanes each direction on Beekman was completed.
- South Cumminsville was awarded funding from the Cincinnati Recreation Commission that will pay for improvements facilities Wayne Playfield, construction on restroom begins this fall.
- South Cumminsville was selected from several communities for the Cincinnati Reds Community Makeover. More than 400 volunteers from P&G, the Cincinnati Zoo, and the Reds will participate in a day-long blitz on major upgrades at Millvale Recreation Center and Wayne Field on August 6th.
- Two local corner stores (Beekman Market and Fey’s) engaged to participate in Center for Closing the Health Gap’s Health Corner Store program
- Pedestrian signal at Beekman and Dreman upgraded
- New playground signage at Wayne Playfield completed
The South Cumminsville Action Team meets every fourth Thursday of the month at 6:00 pm. Meetings are held in WIN’s Community Room at 1814 Dreman Avenue in South Cumminsville. For more information or to learn how you can get involved, contact Rigel Behrens at email@example.com or call (513)541-4109 x.102
The little blue “Doll House” on Llewellyn Avenue has a new owner! Ken Oster purchased the WIN-renovated home in February and is excited to be a homeowner and a resident of South Cumminsville. The one-bedroom/one-bathroom home has an open floorplan that is perfect for Ken’s needs. The flexibility of the floor plan and the affordability of the purchase plan are a wonderful “fit,” meeting both Ken’s physical and financial needs. Ken has already become a familiar sight in the neighborhood, walking or riding his bike. Ha has also been working with the South Cumminsville gardeners, helping to beautify his neighborhood.
As a member of one of WIN’s first Boards, Sister Annette Muckerheide developed a deep appreciation for WIN’s mission and was committed to returning as a volunteer upon retirement. She now tirelessly volunteers at Working In Neighborhoods, working on WIN’s Quarterly Newsletter, in addition to helping neighborhood children in the afterschool tutoring program among other tasks.
Annette Muckerheide, SC, is a graduate of the College of Mount St. Joseph, has a Masters’ degree in Biology from Drake University, and a Ph.D. in Immunology and Microbiology from the University of Cincinnati. She began her teaching career in high schools in Albuquerque, NM, Cleveland, OH, and Kettering, OH. After 34 years of research and teaching at the College of Mount St. Joseph, where she also chaired the Biology Department for many of those years, she retired as a Professor Emerita. She has for many years been interested in the connection between science and spirituality, and enjoys diversions such as bicycling, gardening, hiking, and art.
WIN deeply appreciates Sister Annette’s wonderful work. We are so lucky to have her!
Sally Duffy, SC, President and Executive Director, SC Ministry Foundation
Friends, supporters, partners and vendors gathered in a festive atmosphere at Paul Brown Stadium to celebrate 35 years and move WIN into the next 35 years of fulfilling its missionto empower people through communtiy building, home ownership, and economic learning. Over 300 guests mingled and enjoyed refreshments as the Walnut Hills HS Jazz Combo provided music. A silent auction, raffle and “split-the-pot” were available throughout the evening. Emcee Rob Williams of FOX 19 led the program of events, featuring welcoming remarks by Ed Diller of Taft, Stettinius & Hollister and Sister Barbara Busch, highlighting the recognition of WIN’s 35 Partners.
Longstanding corporate partners for 20 years or more were represented by Johnna Reeder of Duke Energy. Ronald Faris of Ocwen Financial Corporation spoke for the newer corporate partners of under 20 years. Speaking for WIN’s government partners was Douglas Garver of the State of Ohio. Sister Sally Duffy addressed the assembly for the nonprofits and nonprofit funders, thanking WIN for “witnessing to justice, community engagement, shared membership, solidarity, stewardship, servant leadership, and the common good.”
Mr. Faris noted that “Our 10-year partnership has been a true success…by partnering with WIN and its dedicated team of housing counselors, we are able to offer innovative and highly effective solutions to keep families in their homes and stabilize the community. The work performed by this organization and other community-based groups around the country play a vital role in addressing the housing crisis and helping homeowners in distress.”
The atmosphere of convivial celebration continued as Kevin Crowley entertained all skillfully leading the the Heads or Tails split-the-pot and the Live Auction.
Major Sponsors of WIN’s 35th Anniversary
Sisters of Charity
Huntington National Bank
Third Federal Savings & Loan
Taft, Stettinius & Hollister, LLC
Ocwen Financial Corp.
Fifth Third Bank
SC Ministry Foundation