Volumn 14, September/October 2007

2007 Annual Meeting
The most important item in this Spotter is the announcement of the Realty Plot annual meeting, which is now held in October, as you may remember, so people can walk to the meeting if it’s a nice night, and so that more people might attend if it were not held right before the busy holidays. This year, the annual meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 17, beginning at 7 pm, in the Emerson Room of the Unitarian Society. We, again, ask people to bring a goodie or beverage to share. We hope that Steve Strichman will be available to update us on the city’s “vision” plans, especially as they impact our neighborhood. We also ask that you think about two issues that will be put out for discussion: 1) neighborhood feedback on implementation of the city’s historic ordinance and 2) options regarding sidewalk repairs/replacement in the Plot. We have also finished paying the city for the rails and gates we were “fronted” the money for, and the board would like to know if there are any projects or ideas people may want to spend money on in the future. Our neighborhood real estate expert, Brigitte Strelka, also gives us the latest information on that market front. We hope to see lots of familiar and new faces on the 17th!

Election of Officers
The RPA board is made up of nine members. Current members are Sally Quinn (president), John Widdemer (vice president), Tina Versaci (secretary), Joanne Howard (treasurer), Dean Robinson, Ben Wiles, Arend van der Veen, Clarke Darlington and Debbie Maxwell. Joanne, Ben and Debbie all have terms that are expiring this year. If you are interested in serving as a board member (this is a three-year commitment), please call Sally or email her at The board meets about once a month, skipping June, July and August, and the meetings are interesting, lively and quick! Elections are held at the annual meeting so come ready to vote!

Dues, Dues, Dues!
Dues are also payable and welcomed at the annual meeting. They are an inflation-free bargain at $25 (STILL!!) per family. Checks should be made out to “RPA” and if not delivered in person, should be sent to Joanne Howard. The money goes to support board and neighborhood projects, pays for the beverages and hard goods at Plot parties, and buys the welcome presents we all got when we moved here. If you still owe for 2007, we would be happy to take checks for past and future!! Being paid up entitles members to vote and to participate in the Plot garage sale, as well.

House and Garden Tour
Our 2007 House and Garden Tour was a rousing success, in spite of hideous weather for the third time in a row! We got excellent press from the Times-Union and sold scads of tickets in advance, which was our main goal in sales this year (as we learned our lesson two years ago when we thought most people would buy the “day of” and it rained cats and dogs and they didn’t!). We cleared $5545, after all expenses, and were able to pay off our debt to the city and refill our coffers a bit. We thank everyone who worked on the event and especially the people who graciously opened their homes and gardens. The feedback was excellent, in spite of the really raw day. Our next tour is in 2009, and we think it may be a better idea to open the homes for 3 hours on 2 days, rather than 6 hours on one. We may dodge the weather bullet on at least one (!) and it would probably be easier on homeowners and docents, not to mention providing greater flexibility for tourists. Sally Quinn has chaired the committee for the last two tours and is handing off the baton; if you would be interested in chairing or co-chairing, please contact Sally and she can provide lots of support. It would be a shame to drop the ball (to mix metaphors) on this, as people are beginning to anticipate it and it has definitely raised people’s awareness of the Plot, not to mention providing us with our greatest income.

More Fame
As you know from the flyer that went out this summer, the Times-Union ran a series of eight articles on different neighborhoods in the tri-cities. We were approached after the house tour article ran (it’s that heightened awareness again), and were asked to provide reasons why we should be considered to be in the final eight. The neighborhood sold itself and a wonderful article followed, culminating in a meet-and-greet at the Steinmetz site, complete with t-shirts and ice cream. Unfortunately, it was about 105 degrees with 100% humidity but about 35 stalwarts were there to participate. A TU glitch (as opposed to a Mother Nature glitch) also resulted in a number of papers that were supposed to go to Plot residents being delivered to boulevard residents!! Hopefully, anyone who wanted a copy of the article was able to access it online or from a friend.

Wow Website
If you have not yet accessed our new website, now’s the time to do it. Arend did a fabulous job and had it ready in time for the tour. He is a house lover and would like, at some point, to include information about each of the houses in the Plot. Go to

Spotter Info
If you would like to include an article or information in the Spotter, please contact Sally Quinn. Also, ads are welcome - $10. an issue will get you or your business in! Also, if you have family news you’d like to share, let Tina know so she can put it in “Milestones”.

Please welcome new Plotters Christopher and Tracey Osborne. Vince and Tina Versaci have moved around the corner to the Breault’s home. Dr. and Mrs. Richard Breault have moved to new digs in Niskayuna. We wish these long time Plot residents all the best in the future . . . they will be missed!