Get Ready for the Heart of the Park Celebration

The Martin Fontana Parks Association is once again presenting the Heart of the Park Celebration on May 18, 2019. This annual celebration brings together friends and neighbors to celebrate our two great Almaden Parks, TJ Martin & Jeffrey Fontana.

The Association has worked hard to keep these parks beautiful, accessible and fun for all of the park neighbors.

It will include arts and crafts, the traditional  Dog Parade   

a Birding Tour, Barn Owl Display, a Master gardener, and

a Raffle with valuable prizes.         

In 2010, PG&E announced its intentions to remove 140 mature shade trees from our parks. A group of park neighbors got together and formed a nonprofit, and within a year had stopped the mass cutting of the trees. We hold this annual celebration to bring our park community together to learn about the park resources, problems, to raise funds to keep the trees trimmed, and enhance the well-being of our parks.

Nowadays, MFPA concentrates on improving the parks with new projects every year. This past year we completed the Five Islands project,

bringing five new plant islands to Jeffrey Fontana Park. Working with the office of Councilmember Johnny Khamis, Michael Ogilvie, the Director of Public Art for the City’s Office of Cultural Affairs, and the Santa Clara Valley Water District, we helped to facilitate the artistic painting of all the water vaults in our two parks.

We also work with volunteers to help improve the parks. This past year we worked with an Eagle Scout who built two new picnic tables for the children’s playground at Fontana Park.

The event is designed to bring pride to our parks and help MFPA continue its work, long into the future. We hope all the neighbors who use the park will join us for the annual celebration.

The event begins at noon on May 18th with a birding tour led by Lisa Meyers in Guadalupe Oak Grove Park.   Other activities will start at 1:00pm near the dog park.  The closing event will feature a raffle from 3:00pm to 3:30pm.

Don’t miss out! May 18th from noon to 3:30pm.

Spring-like weather is upon us! Time to enjoy the flowers.

Yes, there is more rain in the forecast (that’s okay); but Spring is coming. As most park-users know, Martin Fontana Parks Association, (MFPA), has introduced many California native plants in our parks, both TJ Martin and Jeffrey Fontana. Now, and for the next two weeks, many of the most colorful native plants will be in bloom.

*Video produced by MFPA member Sunny Wagstaff

 

The flowering period of the Manzanita was earlier; but now it is the Ceanothus turn and other native plants. Walk the garden at the west end of TJ Martin Park where Fleet Street ends. Member Larry Sasscer has introduced many flowering native plants in the gardens. On Oakglen Way, take time to stop and look at the many plants in bloom at Glowing Court. In Jeffrey Fontana Park west, the Five Island Project is worth a visit; as well as the other two islands just east of there. There is one Concha Ceanothus in the largest island which is in full bloom, and its bright blue inflorescence are something to see. Further east, near the intersection of Golden Oak Way and Castello Dr by Tree 13 there are Ceanothus Ray Hartmanns, tall shrub-like Ceanothus, and they too are in full bloom. The flower color of the Ray Hartmann is a softer blue than Concha. These Ceanothus are loaded with inflorescence making it hard to see the leaves! Look just south of Tree #13, at the five Ray Hartmann Ceanothus along the peripheral fence.

Don’t forget the colorful show along the northern periphery of Fontana near McAbee Road and across the street.  There you will see more Ceanothus and soon, a Cistus display.  If you continue to Almaden Expressway, more flowering native plants will await your glance.

By the way, there were butterflies all over our parks! I believe they are the Painted Lady Butterflies,

but I am no expert. They may be drifting through the parks on their way to other places; but they seem awfully happy to stop and visit our native plants and flowers.  You will see them flutter across your field of view if you are only patient and take the time to stop and focus in one area of the park.

Patrick P. PIzzo

Our March 2019 Newsletter has arrived. Check it out!

Just click the link below for the complete newsletter:

https://saveourparktrees.files.wordpress.com/2019/04/2019-march-4-pg-newsletter.pdf

PRNS Deputy Director reveals new plan for our Parks at MFPA General Meeting

President Rod Carpenter called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm last Wednesday, Feb. 13, addressing an overflow audience of members and guests.

Parks, Recreation & Neighborhood Services Deputy Director, Justin Long, summarized some of the changes that are being made to improve the efficiency of park maintenance.  A new “Activate San Jose” plan will be the new parks’ guiding document and should be in available to the public in June for community review.  MFPA will alert our members when it is presented.

Mr. Long and Dan Greeley, our Maintenance District Supervisor, spoke about the rodent problem affecting many San Jose parks, including ours.  They outlined the action that PRNS will be taking to alleviate the problem, and then answered questions from the floor.

Outgoing President, Rod Carpenter highlighted the achievements of MFPA during his two-year tenure:

  • Completion of the native plant Five Islands Project
  • Construction of the “Surf Shack” tool shed
  • Repair of the Meridian fence at TJ Martin Park
  • The Planting of over fifty new trees in both parks
  • Completion of the “Beautility” Water Vault Painting project
  • Partnership with PRNS Adopt-a-Park Program and Santa Clara County Association of Realtors, (SCCAOR), to maintain existing projects like the Jeffrey Fontana Memorial Rose Garden

Perhaps the most significant achievement of Rod’s term was the completion of the “Right of Entry” agreement with PRNS allowing MFPA to hire qualified contractors to work in the parks on MFPA projects!

Outgoing Secretary, Rich Grialou was honored with the “President’s Award” and received a plaque in appreciation of his contributions to MFPA.

President Rod Carpenter was presented with a plaque honoring his dedication and determination to oversee the accomplishments of the last two years.

The new Board of Directors goals for the next year include:

  • Ongoing maintenance projects with PRNS Adopt-a-Park and SCCAOR
  • The annual Heart of the Park Celebration on May 18, 2019
  • Continued collaboration with PRNS and the City to improve our parks

Thank You 2019 Sponsors

2019 begins another year of advocating for our TJ Martin and Jeffrey Fontana Parks.  Your Memberships and your Sponsorships make it possible for us to complete projects, beautify our parks, and advocate at the City level for increased maintenance and attention!  We want to take this opportunity to Thank and Salute all our Members and outstanding Sponsors.

CURRENT SPONSORS OF MFPA

COAST LIVE OAK                             

($1000 – $ $4,999)

Almaden Valley Nursery

Del Grande Dealership Group

East Bay Wilds Nursery

Office of Councilman Johnny Khamis, San Jose District 10 – SAP Grant

PG&E

Santa Clara County Association of Realtors

SEQUOIA

($500 – $999)

Larry and Betty Hinman

Steve and Nicole Ricossa

SYCAMORE

  ($250 – $499)

Rod and Ellie Carpenter

John and Dolores Carr

Rich Grialou and Pat Burrow

Steve and Maureen Harrington

Maureen Ryan and Frank Leonardi

Don Phillips and Janet Morris

James and Sally Petersen

Ram and Anita Praturu

Pat and Sunny Wagstaff

Theresa and Ryan Wellman

Linda and Ron Wilson

CREPE MYRTLE

($100 – $249)

Dennis and Linda Abad

Applied Materials Foundation

Thomas and S.D. Bailey

Vance and Jacki Bishop

Malcolm and Janie Bramwell

Robert and Annie Braunstein

Ralph Brooks

David and Honey Chai

Eldon and Nancy Cherniss

Richard Clark and Stacy Whiteman

James and Judith Eldridge

Linda and Gary Exberger

Vance and Grace Garland

Ernie Hirt

Stan and Gloria Hoo

Walt and Joyce Johnson

Michelle and Dan Judd

Mike and Nancy Kalashian

Howard and Carol King

Chris LaPlante

Michael and Cynthia Lauth

Pier and Gail Maggiani

Wayne and Linda Opp

Pat and Diane Pizzo

DeAnna and Sridhar Pursai

Ronak Shah

Kelly Shepherd and Dave Gonzales

Joanne Shimoguchi

Bill and Gayle Snyder

Shirley South

Dick and Joy Stevens

Joan Takemoto

Maureen and Paul Tarkington

Danielle Vigil

Robert and Carol Von Raesfeld

Gaya Vukkadala

Richard and Vicki Wendell

Introducing our new MFPA Board of Directors for 2019

From left to right they are: 

Rosy Bowring, Director; Michelle Judd, Director; new MFPA President, Linda Wilson; Robert Braunstein, Vice President; stepping down from President to Director, Rod Carpenter; Linda Opp, Secretary; & Patricia Wagstaff, Director.

Note:  Not present for the photo was our new Treasurer, Gaya Vukkadala