Make your New Year’s resolution local.
Some people can tell you intricate details about state and national politics. Some stay abreast of international issues. They dedicate hours to gathering information and forming opinions. But ask them who is on their city council, what issues face their city, or what is happening in their town, and they are at a loss for words.
It’s true that in some communities it’s difficult to find out what’s happening locally. Not so here. In Alameda we have local media outlets that give us information about our town. We are fortunate we can watch city council, planning and school board meetings on cable channel 15 or online. Meetings are also archived on the city’s website.
If your resolution is to become more involved and aware of civic affairs, there is no need to feel intimidated while you’re getting up to speed. There are plenty of people who would be more than willing to bend your ear on any local issue. By staying tuned-in here, you can help guide the city’s future and, ultimately, won’t have to rely on others to decide whom to vote for in the next local election because you’ll have first-hand knowledge.
What goes on at city hall affects your neighborhood and your local merchants. It isn’t enough to market a shopping district, there also needs to be support to keep merchants going, especially during the first crucial years. Let’s resolve to keep our favorite local places alive and to find more favorites in the New Year.
You’ll never know what you’ll find by taking a simple stroll through Alameda’s business districts. We can enjoy local restaurants, entertainment, cultural events, and shopping without leaving town and fighting traffic. The activity, the people, the finds, and even the occasional window-shopping offer surprises that can even be romantic. Plus, taking regular strolls can be a good way to start that exercise plan you’ve resolved to start in years past. Make our business districts a walking or cycling destination.
Bring in the New Year with a touch of it all. On New Year’s Eve there’s going to be a party at the Alameda Theater! Good food and live on-stage entertainment with room to dance. Who knows … you may even meet some of your local representatives there.
Originally published in the Alameda Sun