Town Council makes presentations, receives festival update

Kate Pezzulli,
The Prosper Press
During the Sept. 22 Prosper Town Council meeting, proclamations were made declaring October as Fire Prevention Month and Oct. 6 as National Night Out. Shown from left to right are Mayor Ray Smith, Council Member Craig Andres, Council Member Jeff Hodges, Council Member Marcus Ray, Fire Chief Stuart Blasingame, Police Chief Doug Kowalski, Officer Erica Fairchild, Council Member Curry Vogelsang, Corporal Jeff Hoover, Detective Sergeant Paul Boothe, Chaplain Isaac Varela and Council Member Meigs Miller.

The Sept. 22 Prosper Town Council meeting started with an announcement by Council Member Marcus Ray that the town donated 102 pints of blood during a blood drive that was held in conjunction with its Sept. 11 remembrance ceremony.

That number exceeded the goal by 22 pints.

A pair of presentations followed.

The first was a presentation and proclamation to both the Prosper Police and Fire departments declaring Oct. 6, 2020 as National Night Out.

“National Night Out provides a unique opportunity for the town of Prosper to join forces with thousands of other communities across the country to bring police departments and fire departments and neighborhoods together,” Mayor Ray Smith said.

According to the town’s website, Prosper Police will drive through neighborhoods during the event to heighten awareness of crime prevention and strengthen community spirit.

Residents are encouraged to gather in their front yards or driveways and show support with banners or sidewalk chalk.

According to Smith, this year the police department will celebrate National Night Out in conjunction with the grand opening and ribbon cutting for its new station at 801 Safety Way.

“This is a fitting tribute to ... the safety and security of our community,” Smith said, adding that after the ceremony, Prosper Police will take part in National Night Out by holding “police parades” through local neighborhoods.

Additional information about local National Night Out festivities is available on the town’s website at prospertx.gov/residents/police/national-night-out/.

Next was a presentation and proclamation to members of Prosper Fire Rescue declaring October as Fire Prevention Month.

“Prosper Fire Rescue is dedicating to providing fire safety and prevention programs in local schools, churches and daycares,” Smith said.

The department has chosen car safety, internet safety, pool safety and additional fire safety as its theme this year.

Smith said town residents are encouraged to add red light bulbs to their front porch and landscape lighting in honor of Fire Prevention Month.

After the presentations, the council moved to the consent agenda, which contained three items including the execution of a service agreement and a written notice of appeal to the Development Services department.

All three items were approved and the council moved on to the regular agenda. There were four items, three of which needed votes, as well as an update about the town’s Christmas Festival.

Item 6 concerned rezoning 10-plus acres from downtown commercial to multi-family development at the northeast corner of Fifth Street and the BNSF railroad.

Planning Manager Alex Glushko gave the presentation that described a new apartment complex to be built on the site.

Glushko said the proposed apartment complex would consist of four, four-story buildings, two of which would be located on either side of McKinley Street. They would be comprised of about 300 units.

After some discussion by the council about parking spaces and power lines that would need to be buried, Item 6 was approved.

Items 7 and 8 were considered together in a presentation that was also given by Glushko.

They concerned the building of a wireless communication tower at the town’s public works facility, as well as the subsequent lease agreement.

There was some discussion about the lease and the building site, however both items were eventually approved.

Last on the agenda was an update on the upcoming Christmas Festival, slated for Dec. 5 in downtown Prosper.

The presentation for this item was given by Director of Parks and Recreation Dudley Raymond.

Because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, there will be some changes to the festival this year to ensure that everyone stays safe during the celebration.

Dudley said the stage performance brings in a lot of people, but they are going to need to find a way to keep that safe as people tend to crowd around the stage.

They will be encouraging everyone to social distance and wear face masks as well as have sanitizer available.

He also discussed how Santa’s Workshop will function this year, explaining that there will be a piece of Plexiglas between Santa and the kids.

“It’s not ideal,” Raymond said, “but it’s what they’re doing in some areas.”

The town will work with the event’s vendors to make sure that it is as safe as possible while still enjoyable.

Some activities such as cookie decorating will need to be canceled because there is not a feasible way to make it safe.

Discussions about the Christmas festival will continue to develop as it gets closer, and additional updates to the council are expected in October.

Photo caption

Picture of both the fire department and police departments receiving their proclamations at the 9-22 council meeting. Pictured from left to right: Mayor Ray Smith, Councilmember Craig Andres, Councilmember Jeff Hodges, Councilmember Marcus Ray, Fire Chief Stuart Blasingame, Police Chief Doug Kowalski, Officer Erica Fairchild, Councilmember Curry Vogelsang, Corporal Jeff Hoover, Detective Sergeant Paul Boothe, Chaplain Isaac Varela, Councilmember Meigs Miller