Weatherford Democrat

March 28, 2013

Local yard recognition program revived


Weatherford Democrat

— In 2004, the Parks and Recreation Board assumed various duties of the Keep Weatherford Beautiful Board. The Keep Weatherford Beautiful “Recognized Yard Program” is a continuation of the Yard of the Month Program, which was administered by the former Keep Weatherford Beautiful Board.

Due to lack of interest and community nominations, the program was put on hold in 2008. However, the City of Weatherford’s Parks and Recreation Board has decided to revive the “Recognized Yard Program,” which will be organized and managed by the city’s Parks, Recreation & Special Event Department.

“There are many residents who work to make our community beautiful, and we need to recognize them for their hard work,” stated Park Board Member Greg Shaw. “In today’s busy lifestyle maintaining and beautifying a yard is even more difficult than ever, yet folks in Weatherford still take pride in their hometown and want to do their part in making it a great place to live.”

Deserving residents may nominate their selves for the award, or nominations can derive from neighbors, residents, and visitors. New in seeking nominations, the Parks Department will look to City employees within departments imbedded in the community on a daily basis such as Code Compliance, the Fire and Police Departments and Street, Electric, Water and Wastewater Crews. All nominations will be presented to the all-volunteer Parks and Recreation Board for review and selection.

Parks and Recreation Board Members will use a general criteria when choosing a “Recognized Yard,” basing the final decision on the evidence of pride the resident shows through inspirational landscaping and yard maintenance (only the portion of the yard viewed from the street is evaluated).

Criteria

The general criteria includes:

• Yard is well-groomed; attractive and pleasing to the eye (e.g., green lawn; a variety of plants such as trees, shrubs, ground cover, flowers, wildflowers; plants with a variety of heights, textures, and colors; landscape features such as fountains, large rocks in beds, etc.).

• Buildings, fences, porches and patios on the property are in good repair (i.e., minimal distraction from the landscape due to deterioration, damage or construction).

• Extra consideration may be given to properties that have invested extra effort through the use of attractive art pieces (e.g., pottery, ironwork), potted plants, birdhouses, patio or lawn furniture, windsocks, decorative mailboxes, etc.

• Yard is free of litter, junk and debris (no appliances or indoor furniture on porches or patios).

• Yard is free of junked or inoperable vehicles.

• House numbers are clearly and attractively displayed.

• Added decorations for holidays that are attractive and pleasing to the eye.

Nominations

Nominations should be submitted to the City of Weatherford Parks and Recreation Office at 119 Palo Pinto Street, Weatherford, Texas 76087; by email at pardinfo@weatherfordtx.gov; or by phone to 817-598-4124.

Submissions will also be called for on a regular basis via the Parks and Recreation Facebook page.

When submitting a nomination the following information must be provided:

• The complete address of the property nominated (include which of the five designated areas the property is located if possible).

•  A brief sentence or two stating why the nomination should be selected as “Recognized Yard.”

• A picture of the property if possible (pictures with cell phones are acceptable).

Nominations are restricted to residential properties within the city limits of Weatherford; therefore, if a nomination does not include an address, it will not be judged. Each yard will be limited to winning the award only once every three years.

Danielle Felts, director of Parks, Recreation & Special Events, is encouraged that the program will be an ongoing success.

“Due to the fact that smart phones are so prevalent, we are in hopes that it will be easy for individuals to snap a picture of a nomination with their phone and email it and the address directly to us,” she said. “By getting staff involved nominations should not be a problem at all; our employees work hard day in and day out to help make Weatherford a great place to live, work, and play, and enjoy recognizing residents who do the same.”