Do you remember when you were younger and had to go to the grocery store with your mother? In my experience, it always took what seemed like an eternity to get back in the car because my mom knew so many people and stopped to talk to all of them. As a child, it was painful to endure. As an adult, I look forward to that happening each time I’m out and about. The East Cesar Chavez neighborhood’s strong sense of community has had a significant impact on me personally. Befriending my neighbors and watching their children grow up, meeting the business owners in the area and making efforts to support them better, listening to the history of our barrio from the mouths of the true locals…that is all so intrinsically valuable.

This spring and summer consider how you can add to our community. Meet your neighbors young and old, step up and volunteer for a project, help an elderly neighbor, start a contact list for your block, keep an eye out for pesky robbers, frequent the many local businesses, visit the farmer’s market…and as you do, know that you are adding a little magic to our wonderful world on the east side.