Newsletter – April 2009

     The Crestlake Homeowners’ Association Neighborhood Watch Committee has been working diligently to develop a plan for a Neighborhood Watch program for Crestlake.
     Art Rapp authored letters, designed a map of his area and contacted his neighbors. He was gracious enough to share his work with the Neighborhood Watch Committee. The Committee was able to build on his work. Michele Guido divided Crestlake into 21 different areas (see the map below). She and Jim Brock developed informational letters for the entire neighborhood and arranged for them to be delivered to each home in Crestlake over the Easter Weekend.
     To paraphrase the letter, the Neighborhood Watch program benefits you by increasing safety for both your family and your home and encourages neighbors to get to know each other. The program needs as many people in our subdivision to participate as much as possible in order to make it effective. The program needs a Block Captain for each of the 21 areas to gather contact information for the people in their area, organize it onto a map that has been created and distribute it to their neighbors. If the Block Captain wants to organize neighborhood social activities, they can do so. Social activities increase the feeling of community and helps people get to know the other families in their neighborhood. If more than one person is interested in being a Block Captain in an area, they can arrange to share the duties. To date, Block Captains have identified for Areas 4, 8 and 15. So all we need are 18 more people to volunteer their time. Anyone interested in volunteering to be a Block Captain please come to the next Neighborhood Watch meeting on Thursday April 16th at 7 p.m. at the St. Joseph Township Building or contact Jim Brock, Michele Guido or Ginny Bolan.
     Neighborhood Watch meetings are scheduled at 7p.m. on April 16 and May 21 at the St Joseph Township Building to provide information to Crestlake residents interested in learning more about the program. Please join us if you can.

Crestlake Neighborhood Watch Map

     Elmer Nicklas requested permission from the CHOA Board of Directors to seed Hawthorne Pond North with 250 hybrid sunfish at his expense. The Board approved his request and Elmer added the fish to the pond on April 7th.
     Please remind your family members and guests that any fish caught from a Crestlake pond must be released back into the pond. Also remember that Board authorization is required before anything can be added to the ponds.

     Please be careful when spreading granular lawn fertilizer. It contains a large amount of nitrogen. This is excellent for your lawn, but when it is washed into our ponds by rainfall, the nitrogen promotes the growth of aquatic vegetation which is something we are trying to prevent.
     The street gutters and backyard drains all feed into our ponds. When fertilizer granules land on your sidewalk, driveway or gutter, please take a few minutes to sweep or blow them onto your lawn. If you have a lawn service that spreads granular fertilizer, ask them to do the same. If everyone pitches in, it will help reduce the work and expense of controlling the vegetation in our ponds.

     Spring is here and summer is coming. If you will need a babysitter, there is a list of sitters from Crestlake who are available. The list includes 15 teens and two adults. A copy of the list can be obtained by going to Information sheets are also available to ensure that the babysitter has all the information needed while parents are away from home.
     Anyone else interested in being added to the babysitter list can also find out about being added to the list at Click on the “Babysitters” button.

     With the approach of warm weather, many residents turn their attention to outdoor recreational activities. Please be aware that there are village ordinances which restrict the parking of large vehicles or watercraft in residential areas. Below are three which may affect you.
     1. Recreational vehicles and watercraft, either of which are greater than 20 feet in length, and off road vehicles shall be stored in the following manner:
     Inside a carport or garage, or
     Outside behind the face of the principal building, or
     Outside in the front yard at least five feet from the front lot line provided this is for loading and unloading operations completed within a 24 hour period.
The length of the watercraft shall not include any portion of any trailer used for transporting the watercraft.
     2. No person shall stop, stand or park a vehicle or trailer of any type on a public sidewalk, including the portion of the public sidewalk which is also used as part of the access to a private driveway.
     3. No person shall park any semitrailer, pole trailer or trailer in excess of 8,000 pounds or tandem vehicle in excess of 16,000 pounds on a street in a residential district for a period longer than is necessary for loading or unloading of such vehicles. No such trailer shall be parked overnight in a residential district.

     Pet owners should remember that village ordinances prohibit cat and dog owners from allowing their pets to run at large within the village limits. Further, no owner or person in control of a dog shall permit the dog to deposit fecal matter on any property, other than that of the owner. The fecal matter must be disposed in an area owned by the dog owner.

     St. Joseph has all its village ordinances on line. You may view the details of the ordinances by going to, click on Web Links and select Government.

     If you have information or articles that you would like included in the Crestlake Newsletter, please send the information to Mike Anderson or Ginny Bolan. If it is appropriate for the newsletter and space permits, we will add it in the next newsletter. Please be sure that the information is received before the first Thursday of the month so that there is time to evaluate suitability for the newsletter and to incorporate it into the newsletter.

     Carle Hospital is offering Safe Sitter® classes again. This is a great time to get the older kids ready for watching smaller children during summer vacation. Whether to help out at home or earn some extra money, the skills learned in the Safe Sitter® class are invaluable.
     The Safe Sitter® program was designed by a pediatrician to educate youngsters in the skills of babysitting. This medically accurate course teaches safe and nurturing child care techniques, behavior management skills, and appropriate responses to medical emergencies.
     This class is for babysitters, ages 11-14 years. Breakfast, lunch and snacks are provided. Each student receives a Safe Sitter® handbook and, upon completion of the course, will be awarded a completion card and t-shirt.
     The one-day class will be offered on April 25 and May 30, 2009. Class runs from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Reservations are necessary to attend. There is no cost for the class thanks to all the wonderful donations made by Carle employees. To register or to ask questions, contact Carle’s All About Baby Program at 383-6962 or 383-3314.

     The St. Joseph Township-Swearingen Memorial Library website has a new address. It is