STAR PROGRESS

The STAR Neighborhood program currently has three certified neighborhoods. Five other neighborhoods are registered in the program with the goal of achieving certification after a year of action.

Congratulations to each of the following registered or certified STAR neighborhoods! Please follow the links or scroll down to check out their efforts to date.

Who’s next? Review the potential STAR action items and learn more about the STAR Neighborhood program.

Grover Gang Neighborhood

Bronze Certified in 2020

Rejoined March 2020; Current credits: 49 points

Congratulations to the Grover Gang for becoming the first neighborhood to certify in the STAR Neighborhood program! Since joining in March 2019, they’ve completed the following actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: An email list currently exists, but the neighborhood hopes to expand it and include phone numbers.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Adam, Gitanjali, and Mia have been named as leaders of the Grover Gang neighborhood. Goals established thus far include establishing the Neighborhood Buddy Program, hosting a neighborhood block party, and educating on home energy audits.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: On 7/20/19, an informal summer fling was held for the neighborhood .

  • Host a Home Energy Audit Seminar: On 5/9/19, Scott Fischer of Ciel Power was invited to share information about home energy audits with this neighborhood.

  • Host a Neighborhood Buddy Discussion: On 9/27/19, Councilman David Cohen was invited to share ideas and discussion behind the Neighborhood Buddy program.

  • Join the Neighborhood Buddy Initiative: In April 2020, neighbors distributed flyers for the NBI, a priority action.

Great job Grover Gang! You are on a roll!

Caldwell Park Neighborhood

Bronze Certified in 2020

Rejoined May 2020; Current credits: 160 points

The active Caldwell Park neighborhood is thrilled to be certified in the STAR Neighborhood program.

So far, they’ve completed the following actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: An email and phone list is actively maintained.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Jaime, Archana, and Jenny have been named as leaders of the Caldwell Park neighborhood. Goals established thus far include developing a local green infrastructure example, establishing the Neighborhood Buddy Program, and organizing a hard-to-recycle collection.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: On 5/19/19, a neighborhood meeting was convened to learn more about the STAR Neighborhood program.

  • Demonstrate a Low-Waste Celebration: Hosts of the 9/15/19 neighborhood picnic provided washable plates, cups, and silverware, and collected food waste for one family’s chickens.

  • Neighborhood Tree Planting: At the neighbor’s request, the Watershed Institute provided a planting plan for Caldwell Park to alleviate downstream flooding. The neighborhood then voted to accept the recommendation to plant trees around the border of Caldwell Park and submitted this request to the municipality. In October 2019, four trees were planted, with the plan to plant more in the spring.

  • Join the Neighborhood Buddy Initiative: In March 2020, neighbors distributed flyers for the NBI, a priority action.

  • Hard-to-Recycle Collection: In July 2020, neighbors began a monthly collection of bottle caps, dairy cups, prescription bottles, and take-out boxes for contribution to a local plastics #5 collection.
  • Materials Collection Event Drives: In September 2020, neighbors gathered supplies to consolidate so only one person needed to drive to the MCIA hazardous waste collection.

Way to go Caldwell Park. Keep it coming!

'A' Neighborhood

Gold Certified in 2020

Rejoined June 2020; Current credits: 110 points

The A Neighborhood is our first Gold neighborhood! This active neighborhood has earned points towards achieving STAR Neighborhood status by completing the following actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: This neighborhood maintains an email list.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Eliane and Tineke have been named as leaders of this active neighborhood. So far, they’ve established goals of tackling water issues, building an anti-idling campaign, and developing a tool library.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: On 6/26/19, a summer potluck was planned for the community. Approximately 30 neighbors enjoyed conversation, delicious foods, and learned more about the STAR Neighborhood program.

  • Demonstrate a Low-Waste Celebration: Hosts of the 6/26/19 potluck graciously provided washable plates and cups for this low-waste gathering.

  • Adopt Neighborhood Storm Drains: Five neighbors — Eliane, Marci, Alan, John and Lucy — have begab clearing drains in 2019 inorder to keep their water drainage system working well. 2020 update — the drain clearing efforts continue!

  • Host a Leave-the-Leaves Workshop: On 10/19/19, neighbors invited Steve Hiltner of Friends of Herrontown Woods to demonstrate building a leaf corral.

  • Hard-to-Recycle Collection: In January 2020, neighbors began a monthly collection of used electronics, bottle caps, and dental supplies for contribution to a local school’s waste drives.

  • Attend a Green Infrastructure Seminar: In February 2020, five neighbors attended “Rain Gardens for Homeowners” hosted by the Watershed Institute.

  • Join the Neighborhood Buddy Initiative: In March 2020, neighbors distributed flyers for the NBI, backed up by an email to their group.

  • Promote Home Energy Audits: In July 2020, one neighbor distributed information to neighbors about Home Energy Audits, including why you’d do it, how to learn more, and noting their audit experience.

    Well done Walnut-Dempsey-Cuyler! We look forward to seeing what’s next!

Princeton Community Village

Joined February 2020; Current credits: 110 points

The Princeton Community Village is the first multi-family housing neighborhood to register in our program.

So far, they’ve completed the following starting actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: An email and phone list is actively maintained.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Jordan, Edith, and John are leaders of this effort. The neighborhood intends to take on recycling at PCV by implementing several outreach efforts, including flyers and posters with current recycling rules, an educational seminar with Waste Management, and the plan to distribute bags to each resident for carrying recycling to dumpsters. They will follow up by implementing a recycling competition for the community and finding ways to track the resident’s progress.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: PCV has a long history of offering neighborhood programs and events.

  • Recycling Improvements: After identifying recycling contamination as a serious problem, PCV worked with Waste Management to bring in improved signage and new lids to their dumpsters.
  • Recycling 101: In October 2020, PCV hosted a webinar, inviting Sustainable Princeton and Waste Management to share recycling information with the community.
  • Recycling Poster Contest: During the Fall of 2020, PCV hosted a recycling poster contest for students in Grades K to 12.

Congratulations PCV! We are eager to learn from your recycling efforts.

Constitution Hill Neighborhood

Joined March 2020; Current credits: 90 points

Congratulations to Constitution Hill! They have officially gone from being a Nebula Neighborhood (see below for earlier actions) to being a fully-fledged STAR Neighborhood.

Their journey has begun with the following starting actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: An email and phone list is actively maintained.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Penny and Chris are leaders of this effort. The neighborhood intends to build a reusable bag campaign, promote home energy audits, and develop a neighborhood tree inventory.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: Constitution Hill has a long history of offering neighborhood programs and events.

  • Distribute Reusable Bags: This neighborhood created custom reusable shopping bags and filled them with educational materials before distributing them to each household.

Check out the actions taken in 2018 and earlier by Constitution Hill:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: Constitution Hill maintains a robust phone and email list.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: This well-established neighborhood hosts regular holiday and summer social gatherings.

  • Create Wildlife Friendly Yards: A monarch butterfly habitat was developed on a previously mowed field.

  • Compile a Neighborhood Tree Inventory: A private contractor catalogs, trims, feeds, treats (esp. our ashes) all of our gorgeous trees as well as removes and replaces old ones each year.

  • Lead a Curbside Organic Sign Up Drive: In the past, the neighborhood led a campaign to encourage participation in Princeton’s Curbside Organics collection. (Note: This action is now retired pending further notification regarding the municipal compost program.)

Nice work Constitution Hill! We are excited to see what comes next.

Stony Brook Neighborhood

Joined April 2020; Current credits: 60 points

We are thrilled that the Stony Brook Neighborhood has joined this effort!

Their journey has begun with the following starting actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: An email and phone list is maintained.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Jill, Sandy and Kimberly are leaders of this effort. The neighborhood is currently working to provide support to its neighbors during the COVID crisis but will consider additional goals later in the year.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: This neighborhood meets regularly.

  • Join the Neighborhood Buddy Initiative: In March, neighbors distributed flyers for the NBI, a priority activity.
  • Neighborhood Tree Q & A: In October 2020, Stony Brook organized a Q & A with Princeton’s Municipal Arborist.

Great start Stony Brook Neighborhood! We can’t wait to learn about your future actions.

Witherspoon Jackson Neighborhood

Joined April 2020; Current credits: 90 points

It is our pleasure to welcome the Witherspoon Jackson Neighborhood to the STAR program!

Their journey has begun with the following starting actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: An email and phone list is maintained.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Bernadine, Yina, and Leighton are leaders of this effort. The neighborhood is currently working to provide support to its neighbors during the COVID crisis but will consider additional goals later in the year.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: This neighborhood meets regularly.

  • Join the Neighborhood Buddy Initiative: In March and April, neighbors distributed flyers for the NBI, a priority activity.
  • Perform a Stormwater Analysis: In the Fall of 2020, neighbors recruited the Watershed Institute to provide an analysis of stormwater issues and potential mitigation strategies.

Way to go Witherspoon Jackson Neighborhood. Welcome to the pack!

Harrison Park Neighborhood

Joined April 2020; Current credits: 40 points

We are delighted that the Harrison Park Neighborhood has joined this effort!

Their journey has begun with the following starting actions:

  • Develop a Neighborhood Communications Network: An email and phone list is maintained.

  • Establish Leadership and Goals: Phil and Linda are leaders of this effort. The neighborhood intends to organize around Harrison Street Park to provide input for the park’s maintenance and development. More important, they seek to develop bonds with our neighbors to provide support and community.

  • Host a Neighborhood Gathering: This neighborhood met in August in the summer of 2019 with a group of five neighbors. They discussed some ideas of looping people in to discuss the development of the park.

Good start Harrison Park Neighborhood! We a look forward to seeing your future accomplishments.

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