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August 2008 Newsletter Print E-mail
Aug 25, 2008 at 05:36 AM
www.SunsetHeightsHouston.org
Sunset Heights         
August, 2008
In This Issue
Trash
Graffiti
Bikes
Restaurant Review
Yard of the Month
Crime stats
Birding
Keep Houston Green
Disaster Prepardness
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Greetings! 
Our next meeting is Thursday, August 28th from 7-8 pm at the Houston Brethren Church.  Click here for map   The topics will be 30 things you should report to 311 and City of Houston trash pickup changes.
Congratulations to our Vice President and her husband on their beautiful new baby girl!
If you would like to contribute news or stories for the newsletter then please send a note to . Feel free to forward this newsletter to your neighbors.
Trash
Trash Can
Do you need a green recycle bin?  Call 311 to get yours; you can have one or more bins for FREE! 
Recycle days for Sept 1st, 15th, and 29th.  Big trash is the 15th.  Starting in October 2008, big trash will be picked up differently!  They will alternate between picking up Junk Waste (furniture, appliances,etc) and Tree Waste (limbs, lumber, etc).  Click here to get more details on the changes.
Graffiti
Paul Luccia came to the July meeting to provide valuable information about graffiti AKA tagging in the Heights.  Paul is part of the Height's Anti-graffiti Squad which covers the area roughly bounded by I45, Durham, I10, and 610.  The squad is composed of volunteers and is funded by donations just like our civic club. The civic club made a donation to Paul after the meeting, if you want to donate too send an email to   
He also accepts donations of non-rusty latex paint and spray paint and clean, 5 gal buckets.
You may notice that the area the Anti-graffiti squad covers is cleaned up faster and fares better than some surrounding areas.  Paul does an awesome job at keeping the graffiti under control. It's a never ending battle.  As residents, the most important things we can do are report graffiiti and if we are hit we need to clean it up as soon as possible. How do we report it? #1 send an email to   with the location and a description of what has been tagged, optionally include a photo and #2 tell 311.  The Heights' Anti-graffiti squad will photograph the graffitti so it's on record with HPD's gang unit and can be compared with other images. 
How do we clean it up?  Power washing with baking soda can be effective but try a test patch first, for etching paints on glass you have to replace the glass, some fancy spray paints like silver can be very difficult to remove and are best painted over instead, a latex based paint works well on telephone poles.
The other way you can make an impact is to pull those junky flyers advertising everything from free tax prep to weight loss off of telephone poles while you are out. It is not just ugly it is also illlegal to put flyers on telephone poles. Paul did say he leaves lost dog pictures up, but takes down everything else.
Heights Bike Rally
3rd Annual Heights Bicycle Rally and Scavenger Hunt is Sunday, October 5, 2008 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Click here for more information.  This is a great way to see the area and meet neighbors.
Restaurant Review of the Month
King Biscuit has been a fixture in the Heights for many years.  From the outside you can't really tell what to expect, but it has good food so venture inside.  If you are really hungry start with fried pickles, or beer batter mushrooms, or spinach & artichoke dip before launching into a Philly Cheesteak or a Blackened Redfish. You can just grab a burger, or go out for a ribeye.  They have soup and salads. And, they have off the menu items for example recently the meatloaf was really good.  Or you can just stop by for a drink at the bar.  For more see -
August Yard of the Month
Congratulations Dee Teague and John Simmons at 1123 E. 25th.  They received August YOM!  This is the first house to be awarded YOM since the program has been restarted as a partnership between East Sunset Heights and Sunset Heights. We thank  The Backyard Gardener for their generous sponsorship of YOM. 
And thank you YOM volunteers!
Crime
The July crime stats are now available.  There were only four Burglary of Motor Vehicles reported for July, that's down so pat yourselves on the back because that is a crime which is very preventable.  Remember that the best way to avoid this crime is to never ever leave money or other valuables where they can be seen in your vehicle.  Even if you know it's just a bag with stinky gym shoes don't leave it in there, a thief may hope it's something else and break in to find out.   
  
If you see any suspicious activity at Halbert Park please call the Heights Storefront (see below) we are very concerned about an increase in possibly illegal activity involving minors and smoking at the park.  During the last two trash pickups we found an big increase in smoking related garbage and we have had multiple reports of children smoking.  Hopefully the start of school will decrease this activity but keep reporting every incident you witness, this is how HPD knows what to keep an eye on.
The Houston Heights has started crime and security meetings to be held the fourth Tuesday every month at 6:30 pm at the Height's fire house.  The fire house is at 12th and Yale.  This month the topic will be gangs.     

Please attend the "PIP" Positive Interaction Program that HPD holds every 4th Wednesday at 7:00 pm at 1602 State St.  You can ask HPD questions about crime in the area and stay informed.  There is also a Chief's Citywide PIP at 1600 State St 4th floor Tuesday September 9th @7:00 PM and Sergeant Copeland will present info about the Major Offenders Division. 
   
Height's Storefront:
910 N. Durham #D
Houston, TX 77008                                     Click here for 77008 crime stats
(713) 803-1151                                           Click here for Information on PIP
Hours: 8am-4pm (Mon-Fri)                         
Spotlight on Parks
For October's "Second Saturday at the Park" we'll be going to another park!   On October 11th we'll meet at 8AM at the West 11th Street Park for a guided tour by Thomas Kihn, member of the Houston Audobon Society and Boliver Bird Count coordinator,  to look for some of the birds migrating through the Houston area.   Email to sign up.
This is the park that many of us donated money to secure and bit our nails over its existence.  It's a story of the community and local government really coming together to keep Houston green.
Don't worry civic club volunteers will still do trash pickup and weeding and trimming at Halbert Park that month.  Just remember that the free coffee and educational and fun birdwatching will be at West 11th Street Park on October 11th.
Keep Houston Green
Here is a link to the city's environmental violation handbook.  It lists 30 of most common violations.  The city wants residents to watch for these issues and report them to 311.  Common things are:
       Clogged Storm Drain
       Clogged Drainage Ditch
       No Silt Fence at construction sites
       Overgrown Weeds
       Graffiti
       Abandoned Vehicles  
Disaster Prepardness
Check out the Ready Houston website for information on how to stay prepared for disasters.  This is valuable information as we start the hurricane season. 
Want to know what's happening in the gulf? Local TV stations have hurricane trackers.
Zip codes 77008 and 77009 are not in an evacuation area.  The map at this link below shows the evacuation areas.  Sunset Heights would not be required to leave even during a category 5 hurricane, however that doesn't mean the power won't go out.  People with health concerns who require power may still want to leave.  
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