Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Pacolet Milliken donates Oakdale Neighborhood land to Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville

Additional properties in Hartsville’s historic Oakdale Neighborhood will now be used to develop the community’s ongoing revitalization following an announcement this morning by Pacolet Milliken Enterprises, Inc. The company will donate 24 acres of land in Oakdale to the Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Piratesville Splash Pad contest

The City of Hartsville is hosting a contest to name the pirate ship slide at the Piratesville Splash Pad, opening this summer at the Byerly Park Recreation Complex. The child which sends in the winning submission will receive a season pass for the Splash Pad.
Full details are found on the entry form below, which can be picked up at the Coach T.B. Thomas Sports Center, 701 W. Washington St., or printed out.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Centennial Park vigil planned for fire victims

A candlelight vigil is planned in downtown Hartsville for Friday, April 26 at 8:30 p.m., to memorialize the four children who died in a house fire just outside of Hartsville on April 24.

Mayor Mel Pennington extended the City of Hartsville’s condolences to the family members impacted by the tragedy, adding that he is proud of the efforts of Hartsville firemen and all first responders in doing everything they could to save the children. Pennington invited all members of the Hartsville community to participate in the vigil.

“This community has been tested these last three years. We have proven time and time again that even in the most adverse conditions, we pull together in love, support, and we persevere when all hope seems lost,” he said. “We have the power, and the compassion, and the resolve to heal -- I hope that my fellow Hartsville residents will join me as we begin that journey again tomorrow night. Please keep these children and this family in your prayers.”

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Hartsville residents invited to bring unwanted prescription medications to Police Department's Drug Take-Back Day

The Hartsville Police Department will be participating in the Drug Enforcement Administration’s National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day this Saturday, April 27 at Rite Aid, found at 844 S. Fifth St.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., those interested are invited to bring any expired or unused prescription drugs or over-the-counter drugs for safe disposal. Police officers will be on site to collect the medications. The service is free and anonymous, with no questions asked. The Drug Enforcement Administration began organizing Take-Back Days to reduce the potential for prescription drug abuse and to raise awareness of the hazards created by either throwing medicine away or flushing it down the toilet. Old medicines which remain in storage are often misused or abused, sometimes by family members or friends of the intended user, and can result in overdoses and accidental poisonings.

So far, thousands of community partners and law enforcement agencies, including the Hartsville Police Department, have taken more than 2 million pounds, or more than 1,000 tons, of medication out of circulation nationwide.

Friday, April 19, 2013

A Moment with the Manager: City of Hartsville master plan public input session

By Natalie M. Zeigler
City Manager

Among the many reasons city government work can be very exciting is the influence it has on the way we see the community around us.

We see the people, businesses, schools and infrastructure which exist here now, of course, but we also see many possibilities: opportunities for attracting new industries and organizations, or potential for new services, projects and beautification efforts. This way of looking at Hartsville leads to efforts like the Duke Center for Innovation in Hartsville, the project led by the Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville which will help create new homegrown businesses here. The same point of view led us to develop the Piratesville Splash Pad at Byerly Park which will open this summer, a water play area providing another fun, local activity for children and families.

Of course, we in the City of Hartsville government are not the only ones who see potential directions for our community. Many of our residents also have ideas of what could be done to improve Hartsville, even if it has never been done before. On Monday, we are inviting the public to a meeting where they may share their ideas on economic development, civic planning, services and more, a time for anyone interested to truly take part in the planning of our city.

The public input session for the City of Hartsville's new master plan will take place at 6 p.m. Monday, April 22 at Mt. Calvary AME Church, 1106 S. Sixth St. Planning documents for our city's growth and evolution already exist, of course, including the "Hartsville 2020" plan created several years ago by the Hartsville Planning Commission. The new master plan, however, will go deeper than ever before in answering the question of what specific steps would develop and expand on the Hartsville community in ways which would benefit us all.

The Boudreaux Group of Columbia, which has been selected to create the master plan, has begun a yearlong process of gathering information from the public and from specific stakeholders like our local industries, schools and civic groups. At a later public meeting, they will share their findings and ideas so they can take in more input. When all work is done, they will provide a plan combining all input and research with professional design work, something which will inform the projects of the Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville and the City of Hartsville for many years to come.

For many reasons, our city is a great place to live and work -- industry, education, recreation and culture -- but we only came to this point after a long history of always aiming higher and always planning what could come next. Join us this Monday if you would like, and help write the next chapter Hartsville's story.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Public input session planned for City of Hartsville master plan

Anyone who lives, works or otherwise has an interest in the future of the City of Hartsville is invited to share their ideas at a public meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, April 22 at Mt. Calvary AME Church, 1106 S. Sixth St. in Hartsville.

The meeting, which will feature discussion of a wide variety of topics including economic development, civic planning, beautification, city services and more, is intended to support efforts to develop a new master plan for Hartsville.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Oakdale Neighborhood Renaissance to get a boost

The Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville and Pacolet Milliken Enterprises, represented by Vice President of Real Estate John Montgomery, will host a public presentation at 10 a.m., Monday April 29 at Twitty United Methodist Church in Hartsville to share news about a development that will give a boost to the Oakdale Neighborhood Renaissance.

Built in 1900 for employees of the Hartsville Cotton Mill and first known as “Mill Village,” the Oakdale Neighborhood has experienced significant decline in recent decades.

Efforts to revitalize the neighborhood began in 2004, shortly after the South Carolina Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics was built on the original Cotton Mill site.

In 2011, Oakdale residents and other members of the Hartsville community formed the Oakdale Community Development Project Team and developed a successful proposal for a Phase II grant from the Community Development Block Grant Program. The $500,000 award was announced in December 2011 and is being used to improve, among other things, lighting, security and sidewalks in the neighborhood. Other improvement initiatives undertaken by the neighborhood association since 2011 have included neighborhood clean-up projects and a crime watch program.

Last month, the Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville began a 12-month project to expand and update “Hartsville 2020 Vision” and create a visual framework for the continued development of the city. Funded by the Byerly Foundation, this master planning project is intended to help synthesize existing research and planning documents with new data, citizen opinions and professional design expertise to offer a coherent vision, strategy and action steps to guide development in Hartsville for the next 20 years.

The Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville, a nonprofit public benefit corporation that comprises a cross-section of institutional and community partners, exists to further local community improvement projects.

Great American Cleanup coming April 20

The City of Hartsville will be participating in the Great American Cleanup, the largest beautification and community improvement program in the nation, this Saturday, April 20, from 8 a.m. to noon, and beginning in Pride Park, found at 630 S. Sixth St.

The nationwide program, sponsored by Keep America Beautiful, counted more than 4 million volunteers cleaning up 20,000 communities during the 2012 event, cleaning up parks and other public areas, renovating playgrounds and more.

In Hartsville, volunteers will move through assigned neighborhoods and focus on roadside litter cleanup. The event is free for volunteers, who may register at Pride Park from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. The cleanup begins at 8:30 a.m. and will run through noon, after which lunch will be served at the park. Participants receive lunch, a free T-shirt, and will also have available safety vests, gloves, and bags. Equipment will need to be turned back in at the park at noon.

For more information, contact Brenda Kelley at (843) 383-3009.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Thursdays on College concerts kick off with Patrick Davis

The Thursdays on College concert series will return for the first of two spring concerts on Thursday, April 11, with a performance by Patrick Davis, sponsored by Carolina Pines Regional Medical Center. The City of Hartsville and Hartsville Downtown Development Association are presenting the series of downtown street concerts.

The South Carolina native will be touring in his home state after developing a wildly successful career as an acoustic/country/folk rock performer and songwriter in Nashville, Tenn. He has written songs for such acts as Lady Antebellum, Darius Rucker, Jewel, Jason Michael Carroll and more. Davis’ latest album, “The Cuts Volume 1” features his performance of songs which topped the charts when recorded by other artists, such as “Love I’ve Found in You” from the Lady Antebellum album “Own the Night,” “So Sweet” from Casey James’ debut album and “Where I’m From,” originally released as Jason Michael Carroll as a single.

The concert begins at 6:30 p.m. on the block of East College Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets, and will run for about two hours. Food will be available for purchase from the Yummy Wagon, and drinks will be for sale from Vintage Wine Boutique. Child care is available through The Play Zone, located at the concert site at 125 N. Fifth St., and which may be contacted at 843.332.7513. During the concert, Leadership Hartsville will host a raffle to raise funds for Tales on the Town, the project which will place sculptures of red foxes throughout downtown Hartsville.

Thursdays on College concerts will continue on May 9 at 6:30 p.m., with a performance by Josh Roberts and The Hinges, a Columbia, S.C.-based Americana/indie/rock group.

A Moment with the Manager - New City Hall

By Natalie M. Zeigler
City Manager

Adaptive reuse, or developing uses for historic buildings other than their original purpose, has been key to downtown Hartsville’s vitality.

The iconic J.L. Coker Company Building, a strikingly beautiful retail building dating to 1909, remains important as the location of Hilex Poly and the YMCA. The Arcade Hotel, a symbol of Hartsville’s prosperity a century ago in 1913, is still a sign of strength as the home of SPC Credit Union.

Adaptive reuse allows us to maintain and preserve some of what made our city unique in the past while we meet the needs of today. The city government took on an important piece of this process when it decided to transform the former Bank of Hartsville/Bank of America building into Hartsville’s new City Hall. Located at 100 E. Carolina Ave., this 110-year-old building is a very visible pieces of downtown. It could have been a persistent vacancy, however, because modern banking requires space for a Drive-Thru, which this building does not have.

After decades of operation, our former City Hall closed for the last time yesterday. Neither the old nor the new location will be open today as we move into our new home. The new City Hall opens next Monday, April 8, and will include our Finance Department, Administrative Services, City Manager’s Office, and Special Projects/Planning. Our new, much-improved City Council chamber has also been built at the site, with more space and audio/visual capability. The first regular Council meeting in the new space comes next week on Tuesday, April 9 at 6 p.m. We are also inviting the public to a reception to show off the new building the day of the May 14 meeting at 5 p.m.

The building’s history as a bank has been particularly useful for our Finance Department. The teller counters in the main lobby have been renovated and will now serve as the place for city utility customers to make walk-in payments with our employees. The lack of a Drive-Thru location has been resolved by an excellent partnership with SPC Credit Union, which now accepts Drive-Thru utility bill payments for the City at its location in the old Arcade Hotel, 204 N. Fifth St. These remain just a couple of ways for customers to handle those bills, since they are also accepted by mail, online or by automatic bank draft.

Our city is changing and growing all the time, a process necessary for us to remain a strong community now and in the future. As we evolve, we should always consider how to use the resources given to us by Hartsville’s past, like the building which has become City Hall. I hope our residents can come by to see their new facility.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Recycler of the Month - March 2013

Sheila Ousley is the City of Hartsville’s Recycler of the Month for March.

Ousley said she has long felt that recycling provides a great value by reusing material rather than sending it to a landfill.

"I have been doing it for as long as the City has made it available," she said.

The Recycler of the Month award provided Ousley with a $25 gift card to Bizzell's, found at 137 E. Carolina Ave. in Hartsville, as well as a real-estate-style sign announcing the award.

The award program is part of an effort to promote the recycling partnership of Sonoco and the City of Hartsville. Next month, the City will choose another winner. To learn more about City of Hartsville pick-up schedules and what recyclable materials are accepted, or to request a recycling roll cart, call Environmental Services at 843.383.3019.