LIMA — As a city and neighborhood leader, Rebecca Kreher wants her neighbors to join her in solving problems.
Neighbors working with neighbors investing in the area where they live is a good way to build a neighborhood people want, she said.
The Riverside North Neighborhood Association held a block party Sunday at the Bradfield Community Center for neighbors to come together for food, fun and talk about problems facing their neighborhood, Kreher said.
“The idea is to just get in front of residents and find out what issues are relevant or important with them and see how we can partner with the residents and get some solutions to them,” Kreher said.
The Riverside North Neighborhood sits between Jameson Avenue and Elizabeth Street, North Shore Drive to West Market Street.
Kreher, who not only is president of the association but the 4th Ward City councilwoman, said community policing officer Justin Wireman was on hand to meet residents and the Lima Fire Department brought a firetruck for residents to see. There also was a cookout with hot dogs served up.
“It’s an excuse to come together and spend time together and enjoy being neighbors,” she said.
Kreher said some of the biggest issues she hears about are crime, people speeding, and vacant houses. She said such events gives her a chance to hear what’s on the minds of her neighbors and people she represents on the council.
“I’m willing to hear whatever part of the conversation people bring to the table and talk about how our neighborhood association can solve that with them. Not for them, but with them,” Kreher said.
Wireman said he spoke to several people who expressed concerns about drugs and speeding in neighborhoods.
“It helps me because the community actually gets to see me in street clothes and they get to know me face to face, shake hands and eat a hot dog or two together. They get to see me other than in a uniform or inside the cop car,” Wireman said.
Jasmine Funches attended the block party with her son and her younger siblings, who are young children. She said she knew they would like seeing a police car with its overhead lights on as well as a firetruck.
“I knew they would be into the firetrucks and activities,” she said.
Reach Greg Sowinski at 567-242-0464 or on Twitter @Lima_Sowinski.