Updates from City of Newberry District 5

Happy Holidays everyone! I can’t believe Thanksgiving is over and Christmas is just around the corner. Where has 2022 gone? When you’re having fun and doing the things you enjoy, time flies by. It is a blessing to see another year come to an end, despite all of our ongoing challenges related to environmental concerns etc. It is still my pleasure, as your councillor, to share the information, activities and events of the past 28 months with your district 5. We continued to fulfill some celebrations and commitments, fulfilled promises, started initiatives and always made progress.

A new year is upon us, 2023. I encourage everyone to continue to be safe and aware of their surroundings. Every season brings changes and we all have our favorite season. The City of Newberry is always planning and doing things of interest to all of us. I encourage you to find out about all the different events and activities happening in the city of Newberry by going to cityofnewberry.com.

Paint the Park phase two took place on Saturday October 22, 2022 at Willow Brook Park. The West End Home and Neighborhood Watch Group was instrumental in hosting this event for the second time. It was a great event that was enjoyed by everyone who came. The audience was very excited and engaged throughout.

We were fortunate to have live entertainment throughout the event from Five on Fire which consisted of Mrs April Walker and her family. There were pumpkins of all sizes, colors and shapes that the children loved to draw. They could also paint leaves to display on a large canvas tree that would eventually be displayed in the park. Canvas painting squares was also a favorite. The children could paint freely on the squares.

Throughout the event, many locals were there to greet and share with the children. Newberry Police Department City Police Chief Kevin Goodman was our grill master for the day. Everyone enjoyed his famous grilled hamburgers and hot dogs. Pizzas were donated by the Living Hope Foundation led by Mr John Glasgow. Officer Scott and Officer Abrams were on hand to talk safety while giving the kids a chance to choose one of their favorite stuffed animals. The Newberry Fire Department was also on hand to discuss fire safety. There were also free books and clothing, as well as various items donated for attendees to choose from.

Isaiah Johnson was our special guest. He spoke to the children about making good decisions and doing the right thing, and understanding that good manners and respect are a must. Isaiah encouraged the children to do their best, aim high, and be anything they want.

Newberry Made was very helpful in supporting the event as they did all the arts and crafts with the children. This outstanding group consisted of Robert Matherson, Amy Matherson, Nancy Burkhart and Darby Samargo.

Special thanks to the City of Newberry, Mr. Matt Dewitt and Mayor Foster Senn, West End Home and Neighborhood Watch Group, Newberry City Police Department, Newberry County Sheriff’s Department, Newberry Fire Department, Earth Safe Finishes, Newberry Made, Newberry Haven, Five on Fire and all the volunteers who made this event such a special one.

I still attend meetings, ceremonies/town events, call back, answer emails/texts, walk around the neighborhood, help those in need, and respond to your needs immediately. If you have any concerns or problems please do not hesitate to contact me and as always I aim to respond within 12 to 24 hours. You can reach me at 803-321-1000 or email [email protected]

I will be attending the Advance Municipal Elected Officials Institute for my fourth and final grade. I am expected to graduate in February. This milestone will allow me to continue learning and growing as your councilor-elect. I still firmly believe that “he who does the work, learns”.

During the months of October through December, I continued to deliver food to those in need. If you or someone you know is in need of groceries, please contact me and I will do everything I can to ensure these residents are cared for in a timely manner. The boxes of groceries I deliver to the community come from the Newberry City Police Department, which are provided by Greg’s Groceries, packed by officers across the state, and brought from Newberry to Newberry by members of the Newberry Police Department. Special thanks to the City of Newberry Police Department who saw and understood the need to be a part of this community project.

For those in need of food, there are several local pantries ready to help. God Abundance for All People (GAAP) is a ministry of the O’Neal Street United Methodist Church located at 501 O’Neal Street. Living Hope Food Pantry also helps those in need of groceries which is located at 1830 Nance Street, Newberry and is open Thursdays 10am to 2pm

A newly installed Little Food Pantry Box was installed at Dr. Julian Grant Park at 1719 Vincent Street. This box was constructed by students at Newberry Career Center. Special thanks to Newberry Young Professionals Mrs Jessica Beam Shealy along with Councilman David Force for making this possible. Please come and get what you need from the box and put non-perishable food in the box for those in need if you don’t need anything.

I was able to deliver hot Thanksgiving meals to residents on Thanksgiving Day. These dinners were freshly prepared and packaged by New Vision Ministries Inc. under the direction of Pastor Adrian Pitts. Thank you so much to the pastor and his church family for giving back to those in need.

I am still seeking and asking for funding to do some updates to the Boy Scout Cabin at Willow Brook Park. According to City of Newberry Parks, Recreation Ad Tourism (PRT), Willow Brook Park is slated for updates in 2023, but in prayer I will be able to source some resources to redo the required things in the Scout Cabin. Everyone is encouraged to continue renting the cabin for special occasions. This increases the need to seek funds for necessary repairs.

The West End Home and Neighborhood Watch has applied for a Green Space Grant from TD Bank. This is another way to encourage participation and ownership in your neighborhood, from the youngest to the oldest. We are patiently waiting for the results of the scholarship and hope we will get this scholarship.

If you have recently moved to District 5 you will need to change your constituent’s registration address and if you are not registered you will need to register. You can register in person at the Voter’s Registration Office next to Piedmont Technical College on Wilson Road or go online at scytl.com.

The West End Home and Neighborhood Watch continues to meet monthly at the Scout Hut at 714 Crosson Street, Newberry. If you are interested in contributing to how we can continue to do things that are in the best interests of all community members, we encourage you to join us on the third Thursday of every month at 5:00 p.m

The following are still my concerns and things not to be overlooked. There are ongoing discussions about some of my ongoing concerns listed below:

• Food market

• Family restaurant

• More living space

• Cinema/Bowling Center

• Road conditions

• Armed force

Upcoming Events:

• Newberry City Council meets on the second Tuesday of each month at 7:00pm

• Planning for June 16 begins in January 2023.

• West End Home and Neighborhood Watch Group meetings are held at 5pm on the third Thursday of each month

• Christmas in Newberry – Enjoy High Street lights and downtown events through early January 2023.

Jackie Holmes is the District 5 representative for Newberry City Council and can be reached at [email protected]

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