What do flowers, nesting robins, and fire hydrant flushing all have in common? They’re all signs of spring in Canal Winchester.
The village water department’s annual hydrant flushing program begins on April 1 and lasts all month. Department staffers will open hydrants throughout Canal Winchester from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. in order to flush sediments from mainline pipes, verify operation, and maintain firefighting capabilities.
"Our hydrant flushing program is an integral part of our ongoing effort to deliver the safest and highest-quality water possible," said Joe Taylor, water department manager for Canal Winchester.
"This process is very important to our water system and we appreciate the cooperation of our residents while we perform this necessary flushing."
During or immediately after hydrant flushing, tap water may come out with sediment causing discoloration. Although a slight discoloration may last for a few hours, it does not affect the taste or quality of the water. This discoloration only affects the appearance of the water and poses no health threat.
The water department is asking residents to avoid running tap water, operating a washing machine or dishwasher if a hydrant is being flushed on their street until the process is complete. If discolored water is encountered, shut the water off and wait several minutes. Then check clarity by running cold water for a few minutes to allow new water to flow into pipes. If the water is still discolored, wait a few minutes and check again. In some cases, it may be a few hours before the water is completely clear.
Avoid washing laundry during scheduled flushing hours. After area hydrants have been flushed, wait until water runs clear from the tap, then begin with a load of dark laundry before doing lights or whites. If water pressure or volume seems low, check faucet screens for trapped particles.
For further information, contact the water department at 837-5623.
During Canal Winchester Village Council’s March 17 meeting, KIDSConnect Project Manager Michaela Taylor said the after school endeavor serves as a link between parents, schools, the community, and students in grades six through eight who are not reaching their full potential.
More than two dozen students spend three hours a day, four days a week focusing on homework assignments, service learning projects, team building, and reflective journals. They complete six service projects throughout the school term and this year are working on multi-cultural awareness; music inquiry; character building; alcohol, tobacco, and other drug awareness; and nutrition and fitness.
Community and family showcases are held three times a year for the students in the Canal Winchester, Hamilton, Groveport, and Whitehall school districts and provide students an opportunity to present their work and develop presentation skills.
"This year, we had a Make-a-Difference Day, held a clothes drive, and created holiday cards for Children’s Hospital and nursing homes," said Taylor. "Participants worked with Urban Forester Dick Miller during their environmental project. The kids really learned a lot. Select KIDSConnect students are partnered with a mentor on team building, promoting self awareness, skill sets, and career exploration and we have fifth graders working with high school students."
Canal Winchester KIDSConnect is funded by the United Way, Office of Criminal Justice Services, the school district, and the village.
According to Taylor, more than half of the 2006-07 participants improved their social skills by 35 percent, 73 percent increased at least one letter grade in a core subject, 54 percent increased school attendance, and 84 percent of students enrolled in KIDSConnect for more than 18 weeks who had prior disciplinary actions decreased infractions.
"It’s amazing you can get as much done as you do with what you receive," said Councilman Bruce Jarvis.
Councilman John Bender added, "What we give is a very small amount compared to the cost of what it would be later (if a participant became a school drop-out).