Letter from the Chair

Greetings! It’s been a tough year. I do hope you are all doing well now, and getting vaccinated as we (hopefully) near the end of this pandemic. We miss seeing you in person but going virtual has motivated us to find creative ways to connect. We have been hard at work on a number of new projects, and we’re grateful that technology gives the ability to keep putting on our programs, our monthly Third Thursdays, our Tree Workshops, last December’s Holiday Celebration, and last year’s Golden Poppy event.

Monthly Email Updates

Our communications chair Catherine Cadogan came up with the brilliant idea and took the initiative to send out monthly email updates about happenings at AH and around town. It’s a great way for us to stay in touch and keep our members informed. We’ve heard you enjoy our monthly e-news! If it’s not showing up in your inbox, please contact us and make sure we have your correct email address.

Street Lighting

We continue to inform the community and engage with the county on their plans to convert our High-Pressure Sodium streetlights to LED. We support this energy-saving move, but conversion has gone badly in other cities, so AH is urging the county and Edison to make Altadena a showcase for conversion — LEDs don’t have to be glaring, too bright, or too blue. Design for our community lighting needs to consider issues of safety, our unique foothill ecology, and the beauty of our night skies. For a full understanding of the issue (if you missed our March Third Thursday) check out the video on our YouTube channel, and listen to experts offer a clear and entertaining explanation of the issues and solutions.

New Membership Database

Board member Kathleen McDonnell is currently evaluating a new software system that will integrate the management of memberships, events, and communications. We look forward to having an efficient and user-friendly tool that will make keeping track of things easier for us and more engaging for you. The pay off will be time saved to allow our volunteer board to spend more time on great programming, events, advocacy, and making connections.

Reminder: Golden Poppy Is Coming

We look forward to seeing everyone at our virtual Golden Poppy Awards on May 23rd at 4 p.m. More details to come. Thank you to volunteers who participated in the nominations and judging for the Golden Poppy Awards: Crystal Nerone, Kathleen Swaydan, Vickie & Evan Thompson, Sandy Goodenough, Jae Rand, and Michele Zack — and board members Rob Bruce, Val Zavala and Kathleen McDonnell.

Tree Giveaway

Sponsored by So Cal Edison through our program to reduce the urban heat island effect in Altadena, our tree giveaway was a great success. We distributed 40 trees, focusing on areas in and around Altadena with minimal tree canopy. It was also one of the few times we had the opportunity to interact in person, masked of course, and we are thrilled to hear from recipients who continue to send photos of their planted trees getting established. In the run-up to the give-away, Dr. Jerrold Turney led three workshops: Picking the Right Tree for Your Space, Pruning a Tree Properly for Long-Term Health, and Planting a New Tree. Steve Hofvendahl led a 4th tree workshop on Growing Rare and Unusual Fruit Trees in Altadena. If you missed these excellent workshops, they are all available on our website and YouTube channel.

Good Things on AH Website

If you haven’t seen our website in a while, check out altadenaheritage.org where we update recent events and news, and you can also access previous newsletters, events, and our Architectural Database. Our YouTube channel is packed full of great videos including Odes to Altadena featuring Altadena writers, our Third Thursdays, Tree Workshops, last year’s Golden Poppy winners and more.

Owen Brown Gravesite

Altadena Heritage has been working for decades to preserve the hilltop gravesite of Owen Brown, son of abolitionist John Brown. Great progress has been made in acquiring the land, and now an official LA County Committee is working to preserve and maintain the gravesite, as well as developing associated educational programming. Past Altadena Heritage Chair, Michele Zack, leads the new committee of stakeholders, all committed to making sure the work started so many years ago will at last reach fruition. You can find more about this committee and how to attend the public meetings here: https://planning.lacounty.gov/agenda/obg

We want to hear from you

If you have ideas for Third Thursday events, community issues that might need our attention, or any other feedback, please reach out to us – altadenaheritage@gmail.com – we look forward to hearing from you. See you around town,
Sharon Sand