I like Vallejo . . . a lot. One of the things about Vallejo that has inspired me to engage more locally, including the writing of this blog and running for Planning Commission, is the current debate over the fate of the old Sperry Mill site. I believe more than any one topic, The Sperry Mill debate, even with its divisiveness, has galvanized us a community. Really? Yes, so I believe. Prior to that our local news was filled with . . . I do not even know: Bankruptcy? Not so anymore. I have seen my neighbors at the Hub and the Artizen discussing this topic. Once a month, during the summer, we shut down the streets and dine at long table cloth covered tables, al fresco. Our local art heroes, Obtanium Works, sponsor street parades, crazy car rallies and the 2nd Friday Art Walk. More and more we are coming together as a community, not just to debate the nature of our growth but to celebrate being Vallejoans.
Currently we are heading up to the November election which will decide the fate of 3 of our council members. The topics they discuss now in campaigning, and later debate in the council chambers, are ones that will immediately affect our lives. I cannot tell you how nice it is to discuss art with the Vice Mayor over a cup of coffee, meet local candidates who thoughtfully share their points of view without disqualifying themselves from future debates, shaking hands with the City Manager at the Waterfront Weekend and yes, teasing the Mayor as he gets repeatedly doused with water at the Dunk Tank to raise money for charity. (Bob, I still owe you a whisky.)
While national politics seem to garner so much of our attention, it is the local commitment that energizes me. An acquaintance of mine has recently launched a website to share her position and opinions about Sperry Mill: www.FriendsOfVallejo.com In fairness, here is another link for an opposing view: https://www.orcem.com/vallejo_project.html No matter what side of the debate you are on I encourage you to listen to all sides before making a decision. This election, just as every other, will have a direct impact on our collective future, here in Vallejo. In the run-up between now and November I suggest that you take the opportunity to meet with your neighbors, openly discuss those issues that affect us all, then vote your conscious.
And when you are done debating, or are just tired of the long day, I suggest that you roll on down to a favorite haunt of mine: the Town House at 401 Georgia St. Each time I go in I am constantly met with smiling faces up and down the bar. Never have I enjoyed a-less-than impressive Sapphire and tonic artfully made. Always do I leave feeling like I have spent time with the tremendous diversity, which is Vallejo. This little gem of ours has proven to be an oasis to me on Fridays after a long week, on Saturdays before a long night and sometimes on Sundays when I am just out and about. At any time I am fairly greeted and properly served. I have yet to stay late, at the Townhouse, but I understand that there is some amazing music to be heard on most nights.
So to those of you looking for a more energized downtown, and those of you who already visit, stop in at the Town House for pop. You may not run in to the mayor, but perhaps a few new friends in Vallejo. If I chance to be there, I promise a lively debate on tomato farming.
Until next time,
Eat Well and Smile Often