Community Partnership of the Ozarks and sponsor Air Services Heating & Cooling hosted the 13th annual Neighborhood Organization Volunteer Awards (NOVA) ceremony, Dec. 3, 2019 at Relics Event Center to recognize and reward outstanding neighborhood volunteers who work tirelessly to improve and revitalize their communities.
A nova is a brightly shining star. CPO feels organizations and individuals who tirelessly work at making our community a better place to live should be recognized as stars. The annual NOVAs banquet allows us to reflect on the achievements and contributions made by dedicated people in our community. The NOVAs banquet is a highlight of our year and we truly enjoy the opportunity to celebrate those who may go unnoticed for all they do in and for our neighborhoods.
Greene County Presiding Commissioner Harold Bengsch presented the keynote address about what it means to be home for the holidays, which was the theme of this year’s banquet.
Reaching for the Stars Award
The 2019 Reaching for the Stars Award went to the Springfield Fire Department for Project RED Zone.
“Since April of 2017, the Springfield Fire Department has been busy checking smoke alarms, replacing batteries and installing new alarms in thousands of homes thanks to Project Red Zone, an initiative to ensure all homes in high risk areas of the city have working alarms. In addition to helping keep people safe through Project Red Zone, SFD has increased their participation in neighborhood events, activities, and meetings, providing valuable information and connections to the community. All of their efforts haven’t gone unnoticed and because of their hard work and dedication to making our neighborhoods safer, we would like to honor them as the 2019 Reaching for the Stars recipient,” said Brooke Ash, CPO’s Caring Communities program director.
The Reaching for the Stars is an annual award given to a person, organization, or partner that has had a particularly large and profound impact on the neighborhoods throughout the past year.
Fire and Life Safety Educator Heather Parker accepted the award on behalf of the department.
Individual NOVAs were awarded to:
Bissett: Vickie Grinde
Bradford Park: Marilyn Kemper
Brentwood: Cindy Cook
Delaware: Teresa Pope
Doling: Melissa Gallian (not present)
Galloway Village: Wendy Huscher
Grant Beach: Merle Goehring
Greater Parkcrest: Murielle Reed
Heart of the Westside: Anna Pageler
Meador Park: Sara Stubbins
Midtown: BJ Bilton (not present)
Oak Grove: Cindy Cooper
Phelps Grove: David and Vicky Trippe
Robberson: Ben and Lillie Beal (not present)
Rountree: Laurel Bryant
University Heights: Linda Regan (not present)
Weller: Weller Community Church, accepted by Matt and Melanie Wilke
West Central: Michelle Ciesielski and Loren Austin
Westside: Sharon Brooks
Woodland Heights: Steve Sexton.
Bass Pro Marathon Neighborhood Challenge awards
Concluding the evening were the Great Neighborhoods grants to neighborhoods and the Bass Pro Marathon cheering sections awards. Galloway Village took first place and $1,600 in the competition, with their “village people” theme. Doling and Woodland Heights tied for second and took home $1,225 each. Doling’s cheering section featured a Christmas theme, while Woodland Heights’ featured and outdoors theme.
Bradford Park and Rountree tied for third and each took home $800. Meador Park, Midtown and Westside tied for fourth and each took home $625. Oak Grove and University Heights tied for fifth and each took home $550. Robberson, Greater Parkcrest and Brentwood tied for sixth and each took home $275.
Great Neighborhoods grants
Alana Owen from the City’s Planning & Development department awarded several Great Neighborhoods grant checks:
- Bissett: $500
- Bradford Park: $750
- Brentwood: $500
- Galloway Village: $750
- Grant Beach: $500
- Greater Parkcrest: $750
- Meador Park: $750
- Phelps Grove: $500
- Robberson: $750
- University Heights: $500
- Weller: $500
- West Central: $750
- Westside: $750
- Woodland Heights: $750.
The Great Neighborhoods program encourages clean, safe, and friendly neighborhoods through activities and programs that develop relationships between neighbors and their neighborhood association. This is a voluntary program where registered neighborhoods can participate and earn points toward designation as a City of Springfield Great Neighborhood, along with grant money to be used toward a neighborhood program or activity.
Points can be earned in the three categories that define Great Neighborhoods: clean, safe, and friendly. Neighborhoods are scored and ranked based on the information in this application as well as their effort to follow the four principles of the Great Neighborhoods program:
- Residents must lead the process.
- A long term commitment is expected.
- All neighbors interested in participating must be included.
- Continual activities that engage everyone in the neighborhood.
Neighborhoods can earn up to:
- $500 – 9 points (at least 3 points in each category)
- $750 – 18 points (at least 6 points in each category)
- $1,000* – 18 points (at least 6 points in each category) * requires a $250 match.