Ponderosa skate park - coming soon!
Get ready to strap on those helmets and knee pads! The Ponderosa Park skate park will break ground on Tuesday, Dec. 8, at 2:30 p.m. and open this spring. The planned 10,000-square-foot skate park will feature a bowl, four rails, four ramps and a designated area for youth skaters and one for teens and adults. The skate park is designed with resident input and will be constructed to fit in among the existing trees. This will be Anaheim's third skate park, with the other two at Brookhurst Park and adjacent to the Boys & Girls Clubs in downtown Anaheim. The Ponderosa Park skate park represents phase I of Ponderosa Park's extensive renovation. Phase II will be a new community center, while phase III will see renovations to the park areas. It's an exciting time in the history of parks in Anaheim! To learn more about Anaheim parks, please visit Anaheim.net/parks.

Bookmobile inspires imagination 
Work out at Anaheim's newest fitness station
Be prepared: know your neighbors
Did you know Anaheim's Bookmobile serves more than 42,000 residents each year? The colorful, 35-foot natural gas bus is filled with 6,500 books in English and Spanish and makes stops at 18 schools and neighborhoods each week.  The books and DVDs are rotated with current titles to offer variety. And, best of all, it's free.  But the Bookmobile is more than books. Students can receive homework support materials, magazines and career information. Anaheim's Bookmobile is the last remaining mobile library unit  in all of Orange County, and is a welcome friend to thousands of residents. By offering books and other materials, the Bookmobile gives residents the gift of imagination. Learn more about Anaheim Library locations and programs by visiting Anaheim.net/library.
Anaheim's Downtown Community Center recently opened a new, outdoor fitness station area. Eleven different pieces of equipment, each designed to use your own body weight for cardio, upper and lower body workouts, are available for anyone to use.   In planning the fitness station, city staff met with senior center members to get their recommendations to meet their needs. Shade canopies cover the equipment and a concrete floor offers secure footing. The equipment, available during parks hours  of 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. with lights during evening hours, is accessible, and several pieces are designed for wheelchair use. Click here to stay updated on future park projects and amenities.

Preparation is the key to managing through any emergency. We all know we should stock up on supplies, make sure flashlights have fresh batteries and fix window and roof leaks. But one of the most important parts of any emergency plan is to know your neighbors. Our neighbors are our eyes and ears when we're not at home, and they're the first to respond when we're in need. The city of Anaheim encourages residents to make plans with neighbors now, in advance of El Niņo conditions anticipated this winter. Meet with your neighbors to discuss how you can respond effectively to the needs of the neighborhood during a time of crisis. Visit Anaheim.net/hineighbor for more information and for ideas for strengthening the social connections where you live. 

Video spotlight:   ARTIC lights
Craft brewers seeing fruits of labor
Holiday light exchange
As we enter the season of lights, ARTIC is delivering a colorful array for all to enjoy, and not just for the season, but as a year-round feature. Multi-colored designs in any combination are virtually endless. The 1,700 lighting fixtures can be programmed to illuminate and match seasonal or daily occurrences. For example, ARTIC will be lit in orange when the Ducks are hosting, or in red when the Angels are playing at home. On July 4, ARTIC was lit in red, white and blue to celebrate Independence Day, and was recently shining in the same colors in support of our friends in Paris. The intricate lighting system is similar to that on the Empire State Building, and acts as a beacon to those traveling in and through Anaheim. We hope you continue to enjoy the light shows.

In less than two years, Anaheim has become the top city in Orange County for the popular craft and microbrewery industry. Since announcing the Brew City concept in early 2014, Anaheim has permitted seven locations, with five more slated to open by year's end or in 2016. Craft brewers are among the first to take advantage of the city's Regulatory Relief initiative, introduced in 2011. By cutting red tape and streamlining the permitting process, businesses can open more quickly and smoothly, and that is good for the economy, as well as saving time and costs for business owners. Breweries must continue to comply with existing zoning requirements, but the regulatory relief offered in Anaheim has laid the foundation for their success. To learn more about Anaheim's business-friendly approach, please click here.

Here's a way to "brighten" up your holidays: Anaheim Public Utilities is offering customers the chance to switch out those old incandescent holiday lights for new ones! The replacements are Energy Star certified,cool to the touch, typically have a 10-plus year average lifespan, and their shatter-resistant plastic bulbs are safe for use in your home near pets or children, inside or out. Just bring one old strand of lights and exchange it for one new strand at one of the locations below before Friday, Dec.18. Just bring your old strand of lights in to either the Anaheim Central Library or the Canyon Hills Library, and don't forget your Anaheim Public Utilities bill or valid driver's license with your Anaheim address. Limit one per household, while supplies last. For more details on locations and pick-up times, click here

Anaheim Jobs helping residents get back to work
An improving economy in Anaheim and the region has helped boost employment among Anaheim residents to its highest level since the recent recession. In October, nearly 164,000 residents were employed, according to the California Employment Development Department. The city's October unemployment rate was 5.5%, down from 6.6% a year earlier. Anaheim has come a long way since 2010, when the effects of the Great Recession were still being felt and unemployment among residents was 12.2%. Employment has been boosted by a regional economic expansion with growth in construction, healthcare, professional and other jobs. Here in Anaheim, more than $2 billion in business investment is playing out. In the Platinum Triangle, homes, offices, shops, restaurants and a hotel are planned or being built. At the same time, the Anaheim Resort is seeing the expansion of Disneyland park, the Anaheim Convention Center and new hotels. Visit AnaheimJobs.com to learn more. 


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