THE START of a new year is the time to plan for the future and make a few resolutions. At the top of my list are to focus on the future instead of the past and to finish reading James Joyce's "Ulysses."
Note, I said to finish reading it; I didn't say anything about understanding it.
I then thought about the possibility of a collective resolution. For example, if the residents of Brooklyn Park could make a resolution for the community, what would it be? The range of possibilities seemed immense.
I decided to ask elected officials and community activists the question.
Their responses varied but centered on common themes of overcoming challenges and taking advantage of opportunities.
Sen. Philip C. Jimeno, a District 31 Democrat, said he would continue revitalization efforts.
"The renovation of the Southview Shopping Center is at the top of my list. We've made some progress, and the confidence of private citizens along with private money will produce award-winning efforts," he said.
William Badger, president of the Anne Arundel County Economic Development Corp. and a resident of Brooklyn Park for 12 years, said he believes the town is up and coming.
"I would like for new families to move in," he said. "And the residents are very interested in quality retail on our main street- Ritchie Highway."
"Continued revitalization of Brooklyn Park neighborhoods and a continued reduction in crime," are the wishes of Del. John R. Leopold, a District 31 Republican.
County Council member Pamela G. Beidle, a Democrat, said her resolutions are to "do all the things that would help to beautify the community; have incentives for redevelopment, to redevelop the [Southview] shopping center. "
"We have a beautiful new arts center right next to an empty corridor," she said.
The Chesapeake Center for the Creative Arts is sure to be a success because its executive director, Wayne Shipley, has resolved to "provide the community with as diverse an offering in the arts that our imaginations will allow."
Virginia Eidinger, president of the Brooklyn Heights Improvement Association, said her wish for the New Year was: "I want everyone to be an active member of the association, to pay dues, get involved and get united. This community could be united as one if there was an active participant on every street."
Frances Jones, president of the Arundel Improvement Association, wants to see the county complete the Church Street redesign project, which has been criticized as being different from what residents expected. "That is the biggest problem in the community today. It's not what we asked for, and I hope it is corrected before weather gets too bad."
Arlene Hodges, president of the Olde Brooklyn Park Improvement Association, has resolved to "get the word out that Brooklyn Park is the hidden jewel in Anne Arundel County's crown. We have so much here."
That's quite a list of resolutions, but can they really come true? Check back here next December.