Previously, on my storytelling series on twitter.Com via @CoachBill007, I have discussed and posted Freedom of Information Act requested documents clearly showing intent on behalf of the Norwalk ReDevelopment Agency officials, as well as certain council members openly talking about campaigning to legally get certain areas of South Norwalk to be called a ‘blight,’ a ‘slum,’ and an ‘eyesore,’ which would trigger the continuation of HUD money to the city.
The system of operations to raise up the Washington Originals shifts into second gear. Coaching staff is being confirmed and a second town hall amphitheater meeting is set to take place to share the lineup of projects for the youth and families. These include establishing a chess club, outfitting all Washington Originals with jerseys and discussing the funding of basic operations.
As of now, Coach EJ, Coach Deuce, Coach Jimmy and Coach Kevin are in collaborative talks with me to facilitate the cognitive-physical programs for Ryan park. Aside from creating a theater and dance program, a chess club for the youth and families of South Norwalk is set to begin this very Fall of 2016. Last but not least, the establishment of a skateboard school that will be the sister arm of the Scalzi Originals Skateboarders in Stamford’s Scalzi Skate Park is being established.
I initially started my focus on South Norwalk. Having moved into Norwalk and looking to sign up at the local South Norwalk Community Center I was informed that there was nothing for me to sign up to and that there were no sports, arts, chess or youth programs available either. Looking around the neighborhood I realized that the area was being purposefully blighted to make way for redevelopment which would make the area look nicer, yet it would in effect extricate all the residents of South Norwalk’s Washington Village. There is a difference between redevelopment of a neighborhood… and empowerment of a neighborhood.
Having visited the Harbor Point area of Stamford, Connecticut, just 10 miles from South Norwalk, I noticed that everything was so modern and that the area needs more individual character. Just like a skatepark would compliment Harbor Point, the empowerment of the individual children, families and dirt-poor people of South Norwalk would secure the character of Norwalk as whole. As of now, the Scalzi Original Skateboarders are interested in facilitating the development of a skatepark in Harbor Point and hope to enter into productive discussions with the area’s land developer.
I believe that what I am discussing is of great importance to the kind of future the people of Norwalk (and Stamford) in Fairfield County want to have. Little things when aggregated can bring flavor and appeal to a land. For example, the large lot of land that welcomes drivers to the South Norwalk area sits adjacent to interstate 95 and the Norwalk River. It used to be the city’s garbage dump and now in a collaborative effort between City Hall’s Norwalk ReDevelopment Agency, many of City Hall’s Council members have pushed hard to welcome the creation of a retail mall at the welcome entrance to South Norwalk.
I thought, rather than a blight and eyesore as having yet another concrete slab of retail, how about we follow suit with the more affluent Fairfield County towns and create a Central Park of sorts in that lot instead? We live in a car-oriented culture and the destinations to drive to, park the car, and walk in nature are limited. The Westchester County of New York borders Connecticut’s Fairfield County. We have malls galore everywhere. These malls are struggling.
As a concerned citizen, educator and social entrepreneur focused on revitalizing South Norwalk from the inside out I invite all Norwalk residents and any media that would like to attend to the next Washington Village, Ryan Park Amphitheater Town Hall Meeting. It is scheduled for August 13th at 7 pm. I will discuss the plans for the #WashingtonOriginals, speak with parents, and take questions.
Thank You and I look forward to welcoming residents and any media that wants to attend. Your presence would be appreciated.