Welcome to the 18th edition of Neighbours helping Neighbours, a bi-weekly newsletter from the neighbourhoods team, with a focus on good news stories, important community updates and an ever growing list of support resources.

If you have ideas for resources to share or shareable stories of kindness, please send them to: neighbourhoods@waterloo.ca

P.S. Was this email forwarded to you? You can get your own!
Mary Allen Park storage box
The Mary Allen Neighbourhood Association is proud to share a new work of community public art by Luke Swinson and Alanah Jewell (pictured above). The project was completed at the end of July with help from a neighbourhood matching fund grant. The piece brings vibrancy to a storage box in Mary Allen Park and creates another way for neighbours to enjoy the space.

To see more of Luke and Alanah's art you can follow them on Instagram at @lukeswinsonart and @morning.star.designs.
Uptown Rocks!
The UpTown Waterloo BIA has launched a gratitude garden campaign to show support for uptown Waterloo businesses and front line workers and thank them for their resiliency through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Here’s how to get involved:
  1. Find a perfect rock, grab your paint and craft materials and while at home, decorate some beautiful works of art with words of encouragement and inspiration.
  2. Take a photo of your rock, share on social media and tag us @uptownwaterloo.
  3. While physically distancing and following safety precautions – bring your rock one of these participating Uptown businesses:

Later in August, the UpTown BIA will create a giant heart out of everyone’s painted rocks in Waterloo Public Square for a photo we can all share and continue to spread the love! The rocks will then be dispersed throughout public gardens around uptown.

Help spread the love in uptown Waterloo! 
Community garden shares harvest
Gardeners at the Patchwork Community Garden - EMS Site have made donations of fresh vegetables and produce to those in need in the community for the 2020 garden season. While juggling the challenges of community gardening during COVID-19, Urmila, the garden leader, connected with garden members about the idea of donations to support local organizations during these challenging times. The idea was supported by the garden and the first few donations have been well received, with the donation pictured here going to Ray of Hope.
Summer Buzz Virtual Camp
PolliNation’s Summer Buzz virtual camp will be taking place from August 17-24, 2020 via live video calls on the two Mondays, Wednesday, and Friday. Tailored towards youth in Grades 1-5, this program will combine previous Changemaking Workshops and PolliNator Crash-Course. To accompany the live sessions, all students will be sent an activity booklet that our team has created to guide them through a series of reflections, discussion questions, and interactive activities.

Stay Connected: journal + activity book
This spring the neighbourhoods team collaborated with local multi-disciplinary artist Allie Brenner to create the Stay Connected: stay at home journal + activity book. If you haven't checked it out - this journal + activity book is great for kids and adults alike. Connect with the world around you in creative ways and document your experiences. 
If you feel comfortable, share your pages on Facebook or Twitter and tag @citywaterloo and #neighbourloo.
Help us create an online hub for all things neighbourhoods!
Based on the feedback received during the development of the neighbourhood strategy, a new neighbourhood website will be developed and include:
  • Ideas to encourage neighbourliness;
  • Information on volunteering in your neighbourhood;
  • Available neighbourhood funding;
  • Online space for neighbourhood groups to connect;
  • Information about neighbourhood-based programs such as outdoor rinks, block connectors, neighbourhood and homes associations, and community gardens;
  • Easy to use toolkits for common neighbourhood projects or ideas;
  • Information about access to special event equipment for neighbourhood activities; and
  • A mapping tool to explore indoor and outdoor spaces in Waterloo

We want to hear from neighbours - please take this survey before September 11, to provide feedback on the website content and general design.
Join a coalition of local partners in the #KeepFamiliesSafe campaign and help flatten the curve of family violence.

Temporary bike lanes feedback survey
Due to the pandemic, traffic volumes on area municipality and regional roads are approximately 33 per cent lower. 

Regional staff have received requests and proposals to consider a temporary reallocation of some road space on regional roads to create temporary new facilities for active transportation, such as walking and cycling. This would allow for proper physical distancing on busy sidewalks and continue through the summer to October 2020.

Protected bike lanes are marked by traffic cones on Westmount Road, Erb Street and Bridgeport Road in Waterloo. Have you tried these new spaces? The CycleWR website has more information about upcoming activities like "Plan and Practice Your Trip to School".

Give your feedback on this project by answering the questions in the brief survey. Findings will be reported back to council in late September or early October.

If you would like to make a complaint, please use the Region of Waterloo's online complaints form or call the Region 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 519-575-4400 or TTY 519-575-4608.
Gypsy moths feasting locally
Gypsy Moths (Lymantria dispar dispar), are a forest defoliating insect found in Ontario. According to the Government of Ontario, larvae have dispersed and begun to feed on trees and shrubs. They typically feed on oak, birch, aspen, sugar maple, American beech, eastern white pine and Colorado blue spruce.

Forestry staff recommend reviewing the following resources:
At home gardening tips from the Waterloo Horticultural Society
In this edition, Waterloo Horticultural Society member Heather Kelly discusses a vegetable that comes in a wide range of shapes, sizes, and textures—squash.

Squash is divided into two kinds, winter and summer, based on harvest times. Summer squash tend to grow on bush-type plants rather than vines, but they still require plenty of space, about a metre in all directions. Pick them while they’re relatively small and tender, before they get too seedy.

Probably the most popular summer squash is zucchini. An easy-to-grow and high-yielding squash, lots of gardeners are sharing zucchini at the end of July and throughout August. After you’ve sauteéd, grilled, and baked all you can, simply shred the zucchini, squeeze out the excess water, and freeze to use in recipes in the winter.

Winter squash grows on long vines and, if you don’t have a lot of space, it’s best to train the vines up a trellis if possible. Tomato cages are a handy way to control them but they should be monitored for escape attempts. I have 3 favourite kinds of winter squash: Butternut, Delicata, and Honeynut. These can be harvested when the vines wither, around the time of the first frost. Winter squash generally has a thick, inedible rind, and it can be stored for months, getting sweeter as it gets older. A large Butternut will last all winter and into the spring. An exception is Delicata, Zucchini squash also known as Sweet Potato squash, which has a thin, edible skin, although it will still last in a cool dry spot for months. Enjoy these delicious winter squash recipes.

Stay tuned for the at home gardening tips in the next edition!
Stay tuned for the next edition of Waterloo Neighbourhoods.
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Waterloo Neighbourhoods is published throughout the year to keep residents informed about the good things happening in neighbourhoods across Waterloo. If you have any questions or comments, please call 519-747-8515 or email communications@waterloo.ca. If you’re reading Waterloo Neighbourhoods as a non-subscriber, visit our subscription page to sign up for future editions.

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