April 2021
Volunteer Appreciation - Thank You!!
April is Volunteer Appreciation Month and we want to send a special thank you to all who volunteer with the City of Valparaiso! Thank you to everyone who has volunteered at local blood drives, food drives, spread mulch in our parks, assembled playground equipment, planted and pruned trees, helped out at events and more! Valparaiso's giving spirit is reflected every day in our community and we appreciate all the volunteers who take time to give back.
Website Upgrades at Valpo.us
The City has upgraded its website at valpo.us to make it more user-friendly, putting City information at your fingertips. The new website includes useful tools right on the homepage, including a "Watch City Meetings" button where you can view city meetings in real time or view an archived recording after the meeting. A "Voice a Concern" button invites the community to report areas that need attention - from potholes to a noisy water meter. Additionally, you can easily find our calendar of events and recent news. Have feedback? Contact us.
Introducing Mayor's Youth Council
The City of Valparaiso is introducing a Mayor's Youth Council, designed to encourage youth to interact with city government, build leadership skills and enhance civic engagement. This is a nonpolitical, educational council where youth will be introduced to the many areas of service within city government. Students entering their junior year of high school during the 2021-2022 school year are invited to apply to serve on the Council, which will be sworn in by the Valparaiso City Council on August 23, 2021. For more information and an application packet, visit our website or contact us. Watch Mayor Murphy introduce the Youth Council in this quick video.
Valpo Parks' Active Kids Day April 18
Active Kids Day, hosted by Valpo Parks, is taking place Sunday, April 18 from 12 - 3 p.m. at Central Park Plaza. Come join the fun at the interactive kids zone for special demonstrations where children can experience something new. Check out over 25 vendor booths of local Porter County organizations looking to help keep your kids active and healthy throughout the year. Discovery Day Camps will be having fun on the south lawn with an obstacle course, relay races, games and more! Thank you to the sponsors making this event possible, Associated Pediatricians, Extra Mile Fitness Company and Growing Kids Learning Center. Tune in to this recent Fireside Chat to learn more about what's happening at Valpo Parks.
Home Team Valpo Spring Clean Up May 15
Home Team Valpo, the new nonprofit organization created to assist qualifying homeowners in maintaining their homes, has announced a Spring Clean Up Day for May 15. Home Team Valpo is recruiting group and individual volunteers to help homeowners with yard work and outdoor maintenance projects - both skilled and unskilled volunteers are welcome. Additionally, homeowners seeking help with yard work and outdoor projects are invited to complete an application for assistance. Sign up to volunteer or for home assistance by visiting the Home Team Valpo website.
Hilltop Art Coming Soon to City Hall
The City has teamed up with Hilltop Neighborhood House to bring some colorful, local art to City Hall. Mayor Murphy visited the KR3 students at Hilltop to read The World Needs Who You Were Made To Be by Joanna Gaines. This book about celebrating differences and creativity is the inspiration behind the artwork that the students are creating. Stay tuned for updates on when you can visit City Hall to check out their amazing work!
2021 City Government Academy Underway
The Valparaiso City Government Academy began on April 14 with 28 participants ready to learn more about how local government works. Throughout the program, they will gain a better understanding of how the City operates, meet government leaders and department heads, understand how citizens can become more engaged in public decision-making and serve as role models for the community. Interested in participating in the future? Contact us.
Reminder - Neighborhood Grant Applications Available Now
The City of Valparaiso is now accepting applications for its annual Neighborhood Improvement Grant program. Introduced in 2018, the grants give residents an opportunity to have direct input and influence into the improvement of their own neighborhoods. Grants are available for qualified neighborhood-based projects, in increments up to $15,000 per neighborhood with a July 31 deadline to apply. New this year, multiple neighborhoods may join together to submit one application for up to $30,000. Visit our website for more information on the grant guidelines and watch this 25-minute webinar for an overview of the program and how to submit a successful application.
Neighborhood Watch
A group of neighbors from the Courtyards at Pepper Creek volunteered to do tree pruning, guided by Valpo's Certified Arborist Matt McBain. Valparaiso is a Tree City USA for its attention to the city's urban forest.
Will Park in the College Hill neighborhood has a new entrance sign. Look for more improvements at Will Park coming soon!
New Song Fellowship teamed up with the College Hill Neighborhood Association and Hilltop House to offer a neighborhood Easter Egg Hunt at Will Park. This collaboration was a big hit for neighborhood families!
Have a neighborhood story you want to share? Contact us to be featured next month!
COVID-19 Resources
The City of Valparaiso is looking forward to better days ahead with the release of the COVID-19 vaccine. We continue to support the efforts of the State and Porter County Health Department (PCHD) as they work to distribute vaccines to Hoosiers. Some resources and links that may be of interest include: