Meeting Minutes – November 2017

PRESENT: Katrina Shaw (president), Sue Fackler, Tom Luellen (treasurer), Andy Fry, Brendan Jensen, Ardith Woertz, Carol & John Christenson, Susan Duffy, David Banks, Karen Robertson (secretary), guests Bill Riphahn, Darrell Stewart and Craig Duke.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Tom presented a written report which showed a balance of $31,135.63 and net revenue of $394.10 from the October Homes Tour.

BOSWELL PARK REPORT: Bill Riphahn and Darrell Stewart from the parks department were present at the meeting to report on plans for our neighborhood park and to take suggestions from the residents on things they would like to see done at the park. Bill gave some history of the park and the improvements that have been made there. He related that most of the goals for the park in the county’s master plan have been completed. Discussion followed laying out a list of suggestions:

  • Replace one of the baseball backstops that have disappeared
  • Fix the disintegrating sidewalks on the west side and trim the trees hanging over the sidewalk
  • Replace the trees that have died
  • Lights around the perimeter of the park for safety. Ward Meade NIA has new solar LED street lights
  • Tighten up the chain link fence that has gotten baggy in places
  • Make sure the county knows how much College Hill loves its park and how much value it adds to the neighborhood
  • Replace the grill that used to be on the east side
  • Fitness equipment possible?
  • Can the drinking fountain be repainted and maybe a dog watering station added?
  • The picnic tables need to be ADA compliant

Bill clarified that the park is part of a 100-year swap between USD 501 and the city.

Craig Duke is the new Topeka fire chief and is making the rounds of the NIA meetings to introduce himself and speak about his goals and plans for the fire department. He is pushing the department to pursue accreditation from CPSE, which involves meeting national standards on training, public education, etc. He would like to have a representative from each neighborhood to get together to create a community plan. David Banks said he is a former education person for the fire department and urged Craig to have the department go into schools more. Duke also suggested that we could include fire safety tips regularly in our publications. He mentioned the Heart Safe program which educates about CPR and defibrillators.

CHILI FEED: Kat had a chart of possible chili feed dates which don’t compete with basketball games and the group selected February 3 as the first choice and February 10th as the second choice. Kat will check with the Methodist church to see if one of those dates works. A flyer publicizing the chili feed will be distributed and it was suggested that a separate notice about recycling be included. (After the meeting, it was determined that University UMC could not host the chili feed so arrangements were made to hold it at Westminster Presbyterian on February 10.)

RECYCLING: The next recycling date is December 9 and a notice will be sent out by email and social media.

HOLIDAY DECORATIONS CONTEST: Kat and Erin Snethen and their sons will drive around on December 20 to judge houses and take photos.

JANUARY MEETING: Carol suggested moving the January meeting from the 15th to the 22nd as the 15th is the Martin Luther King celebration and some will want to be involved in that. Kat will check with the church to see if it is possible to hold our meeting on the 22nd.

With no further business, the meeting adjourned.

Annual Meeting Minutes -September 2017


September 18, 2017


Guest Speaker – Neighborhood Association president Katrina Shaw introduced Travis Tenbrink, assistant arborist with Topeka Public Works. He explained the purpose of the city’s tree program, which is to maintain the trees on public property and in the neighborhood right-of-way (between the sidewalks and the streets). That involves over 1200 miles of streets and 70-80,000 trees. There is someone on duty 24 hours a day to call if a tree or branch falls during the night.

Travis reported that there is more Dutch Elm Disease around the city this summer and also that Ash Borer Disease has been found in the city this June. He also gave some hints on caring for the mature trees found in College Hill – maintain a stable environment for the tree, provide plenty of water, don’t dig around the roots, and only trim dead wood, not green wood.

Community Officer Report – Officer Hendricks distributed a printed report of crime in the neighborhood, pointing out that the early morning hours on Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the highest crime times. Some of the neighbors present asked Officer Hendricks about recent occurrences in the area – a burglary in the 1400 block of Jewell and reports of nighttime gunfire. The officer told the audience to be sure to email him of issues when they occur so he can justify asking for extra patrols. His email address is

Treasurer’s Report – Tom Luellen handed out a detailed report which listed a balance of $30,448.13 as of September 18.

Other Business – plans for the Wall of Fame and Homes Tour are well underway. There will be a few changes this year – the Wall presentation will be later in the afternoon and there will not be food as in previous years. Volunteers are needed for that event, for the Chili Feed and other neighborhood activities, and to start a Historic Committee.

The next neighborhood Round Table will be held November 20. After refreshments the meeting was adjourned.


Meeting Minutes – July 2017



Attending: Katrina Shaw, Jenny Odermatt, Tom Luellen, Erin Snethen, Susan Duffy, John Christensen, Ardith Woertz, Andy Fry with Ava, Officer Wall.


  1. Community Officer Update by Officer Wall.

Discussion of new stop signs.

No new crime in our neighborhood. Concerns expressed by the President. She observed four children (12-16 years old) walking down the alley.  They were looking in to her car through the window.  She called out from the house, to ask what they were doing.  The youth moved along without incident.  Congratulations to Officer Wall on his baby boy.

  1. Treasurer’s Report.


  1. Grant Update.

Waiting on approvals from the City and Washburn to put markers on 17th Street in the median.  Also, waiting on a response from the City Relations Department on the paperwork needed to be reimbursed for the barricades.

  1. July 4th Report.

Very Successful.  Recommendation: continue to purchase a set of historical patriotic costumes each year.  Reimbursement needed for the barricades ($938.00) and for bills that Susan Duffy submitted that she had advanced for the event.

  1. National Night Out Update.

August 5th, at 6:00 p.m.  The neighborhood received $100 from Safe Streets.  Movie night: we will watch Muppet Movie in the park.  Donated goods will include water, hot dogs and buns from Hy-vee, side dishes from Reser’s.  Twenty-five groups requested a bus for Stuff the Bus, but only 8 are available.  Groups who had a bus last year aren’t eligible this year.  Officer Wall will be stopping by around 9:00 p.m.

  1. Annual Meeting.

Will be Monday, September 18th at 7:00 p.m in the basement of the Westminster Presbyterian Church.  Board members should bring a dessert.

Matt, an arborist for the City of Topeka will speak.  There is a tree planting program through the City, they will plant maples in the right-of-ways for free.  They can also trim trees.  Ash borers are in the area.  The adults lay larva in the tree and the larva is what damages the tree.  Trees can be treated. Several neighbors attending discussed contacting Brown=s Tree Service for treatment.

Discussed forming a committee to evaluate seeking historical status for our neighborhood.

  1. Banners on Washburn

Each banner would cost $88.00, plus the purchase of the arm sets at $224.00 each.  This may be cost prohibitive.

  1. Other business.

Possible code compliance issue on Washburn.  Need to contact Monique with Community Engagement, for the City of Topeka Neighborhood Relations.

Next meeting is the Annual Meeting.

Newsletter should be out by September 4th.

Jenny volunteered to start the Welcome Wagon again.


Meeting Minutes – January 2017

PRESENT: Katrina Shaw (President), Ardith Woertz (Vice-President), Tom Luellen (Treasurer), Brendan Jensen, Erin Snethen, Sue Fackler, Karen Robertson (Secretary)

COMMUNITY OFFICERS’ UPDATE: Officers Wall and Frederichs were present. They reported that in College Hill and throughout the city there is an increase in auto theft because people are leaving their cars running to warm them up in the cold weather. Of the 23 crimes reported in College Hill since October 1, 1/3 are vehicle burglaries. Among other arrests are one at a drug house at 16th & College and one at 15th & Plass. Brendan asked what folks can do after reporting a crime while waiting for the police to arrive. The answer was to be a good witness – gather facts without putting yourself in danger.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Tom distributed a written report showing deposits of $553.25, disbursements of $185.89, for a balance of $28,945.42. There are calendars left and it was suggested that we offer them at a reduced price at the Chili Feed. There was also discussion about collecting information for the historical register process from attendees at the Chili Feed. Sue suggested forming a separate committee to manage the process of applying for historical register status. She also suggested asking Joyce Smith to head this committee. With the board’s approval, she will contact Joyce.

HOLIDAY DECORATING CONTEST: Katrina and Erin reported that they enjoyed touring the neighborhood with their children choosing winning homes. They posted many photos of decorated houses on the College Hill Facebook page.

CHILI FEED PREPARATION: Flyers are ready to distribute advertising the February 11 event. Several board members volunteered to pass out the flyers on their street and to work at the chili feed.

RECYCLING: Discussion was held on ways to increase participation. Flyers will be passed out with the chili feed flyers. A portable collection unit was also suggested.

NEWSLETTER: Erin asked for suggestions for newsletter articles and ideas brought out included Blossoms, the neighborhood cleanup, a list of numbers to call to get something done, reminders of what to do in your house and yard each season, and a column featuring neighborhood houses like had been done in the past.

OTHER ITEMS: Brendan told the group about a new city program called SeeClickFix, which can be used to report things in the city that need action. Brendan will see those reports and can follow up to be sure they are taken care of. Katrina asked Brendan to write a newsletter article about the program.

GARAGE SALE: The neighborhood garage sale will also be publicized in the newsletter. It was suggested that Cletus Linenburger be asked to organize the garage sale since he always participates in it.

HOUSE FLAGS: Katrina reported that she is working on getting more flags with the same design as the large ones on 17th Street. They will be non-fading and will include clips for hanging.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 8:10.

Meeting Minutes – March 2017

PRESENT: Community Officers Wall and Frederichs, Katrina Shaw (President), Erin Snethen, Sue Fackler, Tom Luellen (Treasurer), Brenden Jensen, Carol Christensen, Karen Robertson (Secretary)

Community Officers’ Update – printed reports were distributed and the officers pointed out the new format for those, with more graphics. Between January 1 and March 20, the leading crime in the neighborhood was again auto thefts, mostly caused by folks leaving their cars unattended while warming up. There were two assault cases and one drug case.

Treasurer’s Report – Tom’s written report showed deposits of nearly $1400 (mostly from the chili feed), disbursements of $407 (chili feed expenses), for a balance as of March 20 of $29,962.75. The chili feed was a success, with about 77 people attending.

College Hill Clean Up – dumpsters are reserved for the clean up on April 29. Ben Alford is coordinating the clean up – others are helping but more volunteers are needed.

Blossoms – the plant sale, auction and breakfast event will be May 13. They are looking for donations of gift cards and other items for the silent auction. If neighbors have plants to donate to the sale, they can be brought to the church at 6:00 p.m. on Friday.

Sue mentioned that she would like to form a committee to investigate ordering a large College Hill sign from Hutton Monuments to place on 17th Street. Brenden reported that he still has 3 other smaller stone signs in his yard that need to be placed somewhere. Sue will gather a committee to oversee all of this.

On a similar subject, the neighborhood flag at 17th and Boswell is missing. Brenden will ask the city to fix the broken pole and a new flag will be ordered.

Garage Sale – Carol Christensen will ask her neighbor Cletus if he would be willing to be a contact person for the Garage Sale as he always participates. We will publicize thru social media and signs. The tentative date is the second weekend in June, although some discussion was held about the weekend before when the Art Fair on campus is scheduled since that draws so many to the area.

National Night Out – the date for the event is August 5. The movie last year was a big hit so we will repeat that. Katrina moved that we buy an inflatable screen with the $200 grant from Safe Streets instead of renting one each year. Brenden seconded the motion and it passed. Food for the event is usually donated; we need to be sure that will happen this year before we spend the Safe Streets money on something else. Many volunteers are needed to set up, serve food, and clean up.

Newsletter – Erin passed around a draft of the next newsletter, which will be distributed by volunteers again in late March or early April.

Recycling – about $66 was raised in the last recycling drive – an improvement over the previous one. Discussion was held about ways to encourage folks to participate more, including signs, more use of social media, emphasizing that it is a fundraiser for the neighborhood, etc.

Other business – Sue reported that Joyce Smith isn’t able to serve as chair of a historic process group; she suggested that the issue be brought up at the annual meeting and see if anyone is interested.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned. The next meeting is May 15.

Meeting Minutes – May 2017

PRESENT: Community Officer Wall, Katrina Shaw (President), Susan Duffy, Erin Snethen, Sue Fackler, Ardith Woertz, Tom Luellen (Treasurer), Brendan Jensen, Carl Broxterman, Andy Fry & daughter, Karen Robertson (Secretary)

COMMUNITY OFFICER’S REPORT: Officer Wall spoke of the recent homicide at the apartment building on 15th Street near Garfield and the Mexican Taco Shop robbery – both crimes committed by 2 males in hoodies on bicycles. Hoodies in warm summer weather may be a tip-off to someone trying to hide their identity – he reminded us to be on the lookout for that. People on bicycles have also been seen casing out the vacant house at 15th and Boswell, and squatters have been found there. Burglary reports are usually up in the summertime so residents need to keep things locked up and be aware. Officer Wall reported that both he and Officer Frederich will be on family leave for most of the summer as their wives are expecting babies in the same week!

TREASURER’S REPORT: Tom reported a balance of $29,704.96 as of May 9. This doesn’t include the results of the Blossoms event the previous weekend. He distributed a separate report for Blossoms which showed profits of at least $1573,96 from the event, and several hundred dollars worth of payments are yet to be counted. Sue Fackler commented that these receipts are up considerably from previous years.

GRANT DISCUSSION: Katrina has a proposal written for applying for a grant from the city to help cover the cost of the barricades needed for the July 4 parade. Susan reported that more barricades may be required than we thought – she offered to check on the actual cost and also to apply for the permit for our “processional.”

Katrina reported that she is also thinking of applying for a second grant for College Hill signs in the median strip on 17th Street. Susan & Sue have investigated limestone ones for about $500 each.

GARAGE SALE: The neighborhood garage sale will be June 1-4. Planning is going well. Nancy Cottrill has garage sale signs if anyone needs one. There are at least 10 small signs – Brendan will look into acquiring larger signs for 17th Street. There won’t be a newspaper ad – relying on  signs and social media.

NATIONAL NIGHT OUT: We haven’t heard yet how much money neighborhoods will get to put on the events. Reser’s and HyVee have confirmed that they will provide food.

FOURTH OF JULY: The fire trucks, large flag, etc. are all being arranged for this year’s parade.

RECYCLING: July 8 is the next recycling drive. A reminder will be included in the flyer that will be passed out about the July 3-4 events.

OTHER BUSINESS: Susan suggested a program idea for the annual neighborhood meeting in September. She thinks it would be informative to have the city arborist or someone knowledgeable speak about trees – the ash borer threat, caring for the older trees in the neighborhood, etc.

Carl asked if College Hill flags could be added along Washburn Avenue like the ones on 17th Street. Brendan will look into it.

Finally, the group was reminded that Sarah Meadows has the leftover plants from the Blossoms sale and they can be picked up on her front porch.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned. The next meeting will be July 17.

Meeting Minutes – November 2016

PRESENT: Katrina Shaw (President), Ardith Woertz (Vice-President), Tom Luellen (Treasurer), Brendan Jensen, Erin Snethen, Debbie Pomeroy, Duane Pomeroy, Carol Christensen, Sue Fackler, Karen Robertson (Secretary)

COMMUNITY OFFICER’S UPDATE: Officer Hendricks was present to give the update in place of Officer Wall and handed out a printout of the crimes in the neighborhood for the period from September 19 – November 8. The statistics showed that more than 25% of the burglaries reported were thefts from vehicles. Aggravated home burglaries increased in the southern part of the area – “aggravated” means that someone was in the home when the burglary occurred. He mentioned that it is a tough time to be in law enforcement and that Topeka has a young police force. They appreciate the support and cooperation from our neighborhood. He closed by repeating the usual holiday reminders – be sure to keep homes and vehicles locked, place packages out of sight, be aware of your surroundings, etc.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Tom Luellen reported a beginning balance as of 9/6 of $27,613.28, credits of $2,227.50, payments of $1,445.06, and an ending balance as of 11/6 of $28,743.06. In making the official changeover from previous treasurer Bev Law to Tom, he was required to get a tax I.D. number for the College Hill Neighborhood Association; he gave a copy of the form to the president.

Sue Fackler reported on the Wall of Fame event, saying that it was a good tour with good participation. It didn’t make a large amount of money but it always brings good publicity to the neighborhood. They are discussing not having the food in the park next year. A big event is being planned in 2018 for the 20th anniversary of the Wall of Fame event.

Sue also reported on the calendars with photos of neighborhood homes. She ordered 100 and has quite a few left to sell. She encouraged folks to buy them for Christmas gifts and will try to spread the word through social media.

Carol Christensen reminded the group that recycle day will be December 10 and reported that participation is down. She asked for suggestions of ways to remind neighbors to save and put out their aluminum cans, etc. This led to a discussion of how to get information distributed in the neighborhood. There is not a block person on every block who is willing to go door to door to hand out flyers, etc. The Pomeroys volunteered to help cover blocks without a block person.

HOLIDAY DECORATING CONTEST: Judging for the contest will be done on December 20 by Kat Shaw and Erin Snethen.

CHILI FEED: After reviewing the times of local college basketball games which might prevent folks from attending, it was decided that Saturday, February 11, would be the best day for the Chili Feed. Kat will check with University United Methodist Church to make sure that date works for them. Ardith asked the possibility of moving the Chili Feed to Westminster Presbyterian Church, but the stairs are an issue there. Ardith and Brendan volunteered to help with the event.

PARADES: Brendan reported that there has been discussion at the city about parade permits and the fairness of requiring the same permit fees for the small neighborhood parades as the large downtown ones. A new class of parade is being proposed which will be called “processions.” They will have more reasonable fees and a grant program to help neighborhoods with the cost of the barricades. This has not been passed yet and he will have an update for the January meeting.

JANUARY MEETING: The next meeting will be on the third Monday, January the 16th.

OTHER DISCUSSION: Sue suggested asking someone to represent Boswell Park at County Commission meetings. Kat suggested asking Andy Fry to do that: she will contact him. Susan Duffy would be another possibility. Sue also felt someone needs to work on the neighborhood markers, especially along 17th Street – the Zellers have been working on some of them

Brendan asked if another of the city bike racks is needed in the neighborhood. There is one at 17th and Washburn and several on campus. He suggested asking for one at the Catholic Campus Ministries at 17th & Jewell, or at 17th & Macvicar.


There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 7:55.

Meeting Minutes – April 2016

CHNA Minutes – April 18, 2016

  1. 12 attendees including the members of the State Historic Preservation Office who came to discuss the latest results of the Historical Survey
  2. Historical Survey results – Tim Paris and his colleague explained the results of the historical survey. College Hill has 60% historically contributing homes north of 15th street and 75% contributing homes south of 15th  This makes the neighborhood eligible to become a historic district.  One of the advantages of being a designated historical district is tax credits.  For more information contact Tim Paris with the city of Topeka at 785-368-3013.
  3. Stars and Stripes Festival – Volunteers needed
  4. Clean up day occurring on 4/23/16 with AmeriCorps
  5. Suggestion made by Susan Duffy to have Monique or Sasha from the city come to address our neighborhood regarding the recent code changes.
  6. Neighborhood Resource Expo from 9-11 am on 4/22/16 at the Expo Center
  7. Recycling – Drive moved to 7/9/16
  8. Blossoms – Scheduled on 4/30/16 from 8-11 am. Come early for the best selection
  9. Garage Sales – Scheduled for the weekend of 6/10/16
  10. National Night Out – Andy Fry suggested a movie on the lawn

Respectfully submitted by Clara Gamache

Meeting Minutes – March 2016

CHNA Minutes – March 21, 2016

  1. 13 attendees including officer Wall and Friedrichs
  2. Crime report
    1. 2 automobile break-ins
    2. Safety Tip: Report your stolen items no matter how insignificant
  3. Treasurer Report
  4. A total of 10 College Hill Plaques were purchased and are for sale at $45 each.  The neighborhood cost was $45 so there is no markup.
  5. Burger Stand would like to use the College Hill logo. A vote was made to counter offer with a coupon to be placed in the newsletter in exchange for using the logo.
  6. Update on moving the College Hill stones in place – Delores and Brenden will be working with Abby Schlingensiepen.
  7. The findings from the Historic Preservation Society will be presented at the 4/18/16 round table meeting.
  8. Central Topeka Strong Update: the Dillons follow up group conducted a survey of residents about the impact of the closing of Dillons on Huntoon. More surveys are to be completed and contact with the group can be made on Facebook or via email at
  9. Brenden provided a city update:
    1. AmeriCorps possibly coming to clean up neighborhoods within the city including College Hill. Suggestions include painting the playground equipment, cleaning up alleys, and assisting homeowners with repairs and clean up.
  10. A block captains initiative is being spearheaded by Sue Fackler
  11. Recycling update: Only $35 was raised at the last recycling drive. A discussion of ideas to bring in more money or discontinue the drive was had with Carol Christensen, the primary contact for the recycling drives.
  12. Vote to elect Clara Gamache as secretary passed.

Meeting Minutes – February 2016

CHNA Minutes – February 15, 2016

  1. 14 attendees including officer Wall and Friedrichs
  2. Crime report
    1. 3 automobile break-ins in January. All cars were unlocked.
    2. 2 license plates were stolen
      • Safety Tip: Use at least one anti-theft screw or change at least one or two screws to a flat head or phillips head to make it more difficult to remove the license plate. Thieves don’t often carry multiple types of screw drivers.
    3. Discussion of Dillon’s closing and what the city and police department plan to do with the vacant space.
  3. Treasurer’s Report
  4. Chili feed Feedback: All feedback was positive and people enjoyed the new arrangement of tables.
  5. Nel Richmond passed away.  She will be memorialized in the newsletter and a memorial will occur during the Fourth of July weekend.
  6. Newsletter: all submissions will be required by 2/24/16.
  7. College Hill Plaques: Degginger’s will be producing them at a cost of $45 each. The CHNA will not be selling to earn a profit due to the cost.
  8. Vote to make Erin Snethen president and Katrina Shaw Vice President was passed.