Our event at Grace Court on May 12th was greeted with great weather and a diverse crowd. Mothers with babies, the lunchtime "suit and tie" crowd and others gathered around the gazebo to listen to West End Association President Eric Elliott, Alderman Wanda Merschel and Mayor Jack Cavanaugh speak about our city and the West End. Some notable faces in the crowd were WSSU Chancellor Alvin Schexnider, Downtown Development Corporation President Rence Callahan, and Alderman Joycelyn Johnson. West End resident John Hauser dressed in clothing from the mid 1800's and impressed all with his reenactment of the transfer of deeds. Over 75 people attended the celebration and enjoyed cake a with ice cream afterwards. A special thanks goes to Winston-Salem Events for supplying sound equipment, tents and help setting up tables and chairs. Also thanks to the RJ Reynolds High School Stage Band for entertaining us prior to the presentation.
One of the people who helped start the West End Association and guide it to where it is today is Ellen Yarborough. The following is a brief history of how the Association got started.
THE "BIRTH OF THE WEST END ASSOCIATION
As a way to bring together West End folks who have been talking informally (both positively - regarding the advantages of our neighborhood, with its diversity - and negatively - regarding City Recreation's dropping summer staffing of Hanes Park for schoolkid activities, the intrusion of too dense apartments and the possibility of an I-40 to US 52 link cutting through Hanes Park), Ellie Clayton and I scheduled a potluck dessert meeting at the YWCA. The Yarborough and Clayton kids put flyers around the neighborhood, and we asked Dan Ashe of the Winston-Salem Housing Foundation to speak (just so there would be some sort of "program"). I worked at the YWCA and the YW was happy to offer this site to the community. We visited and had a fellowshipping good time. Nobody was much interested in Dan Ashe's possibilities, because we were into keeping our homes and not investing. What he described, though, was somewhat related to the three-family investment in getting Zevely House started soon after, as I remember. I think that project was by Ray Troxell, Pete Smitherman and another family.
Although we knew there were some threats to the residential integrity of the neighborhood, we emphasized that our reason for gathering was not defensive, but rather to show our appreciation for what we had. The fact that not all people here (or all houses) were alike was considered a plus.
There had been yearly potlucks in Hanes Park to mark the end of the Summer Rec. worker's assignment there, with a smattering of folks participating. The meeting at the YWCA on May 21, 1969, though, the true history of the West End Association began. According to the article in the next day's edition of the Journal, about 45 people were there.
We decided to meet again and become a real organization. I believe Pete Smitherman was the first Association president, but by the time we had to fight City Hall to rezone, the president was Tom Ross. We got support for the back-zoning from residents of other parts of the city, which we needed and appreciated. Our success was encouraging to other neighborhoods, some of which later formed resident's associations, so we felt proud that we had produced "offspring" Contributed by Ellen Yarborough
MINUTES FROM THE MAY MEETING
George Bryan is collecting information regarding the YMCA decision to demolish the 3 homes they own on West End Boulevard in order to extend the incredibly beautiful parking lot for all West Ender's to enjoy. Once the data has been gathered, a group will meet to develop a strategic response. Anyone interested in helping should contact George or a board member.
The main topic of discussion was the upcoming celebration at Grace Court of the 150th Anniversary of Winston-Salem. Funds were approved for the event. Volunteers were volunteered to help with getting things set up.
Ideas were exchanged regarding the West End Fund Campaign. We plan to have a series of block parties in different parts of the West End over the next 2 months. You'll get a chance to meet new people and learn more about the Campaign. Call me at 722-9804 or send me an e-mail for more info.
Some residents of Fourth Street expressed concern over the new outside deck at the Burke Street Pub adjacent to their building. A possible increase in noise and foot traffic in the alley are some a the problems that may occur during the summer months. The deck just opened, so it's too early to gauge how bad thing might get. Hopefully all parties involved can work this out.
We got to look an artist rendering of the proposed "new" Grace Court. Some of the changes will be plantings of trees, shrubs, and the addition of the Millennium Clock.
The next meeting, will be Tuesday, June 6th 1999 at St Paul's Episcopal Church, 520 Summit from 7:00 to 8:45 Everyone is invited.
From Eric Elliott -
What a wonderful way to start the West End Community Fund Campaign! On May 12 the West End told the town about our plans to raise funds for historic district signage throughout our neighborhood and for the placement of a Victorian-style clock in Grace Court with a celebration of the 150th Birthday of the City of Winston - complete with a band playing, a history lesson re-enacted before our eyes, and good words and well wishes from the Mayor and leaders from across the community. A few folks put in some major work to make that happen and we are greatly appreciative. In case you missed the event, or the stories on TV or in the paper about it, we'll replay the Channel 12 report and TV 13 tape - about 10 minutes overall, at the next West End meeting.
The kickoff was just that - we now have to raise the funds to make our dreams come true. For that we need your help. Look elsewhere in this newsletter for information on other special events planned to learn more about the Community Fund and ask questions of us.
Who is "us", you ask? Well, folks like you who live in and or care about the West End. In looking over the newsletters you've gotten the last few months, I realize you may not know anything about the folks who have put this effort together. Actually, the ideas of neighborhood signage and park beautification go way back locally - but who are some of the current leaders in the West End? In the next few months, I want to make sure you know who your neighbors are that are leading the efforts to "share the pride" in our community at the edge of downtown.
In this transient life, it may seem to most that "place" isn't important anymore. Commerce and romance have gone virtual, and everything else seems to have gone global. But folks in the West End know "place" is very important - and value this special place when other locations they could have lived in, shopped at, done business from, beckon other conveniences. West End is a special "place". Our West End Community Fund celebrates that, and will help keep it so.
CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS APPLICATIONS
West End Historic Overlay District
Zevely House Restaurant LLC, Applicant
Van Nemen Zevely House
901 West Fourth Street
Installation of a trash/dumpster area surrounded by a 4'-0" wood picket fence in the rear, northeast corner of the lot
JoAnn Mount, Applicant
William H. Holcomb House
1238 West Fourth Street
Replacement and expansion of existing wood deck with new deck to the rear of the structure
Robert W. Ulery, Jr., Applicant
929 West Fifth Street
Installation of 4'-0" high wood picket fence along the existing stone retaining wall to the rear of the structure
The following is a list of the Certificate of Appropriateness applications for West End reviewed by the Winston-Salem Historic Commission last month (May 05, 1999). The Commission's vote on each application is shown in italics.
St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Applicant
St. Paul's Episcopal Church
520 Summit Street
Installation of 6'-0" wide wood lattice screen to conceal existing electrical junction box on south elevation of sanctuary building
Commission voted to Approve with Condition
HAVE A GREAT MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND!!