By Mary M. Sapp
Despite the many challenges of 2020, we were able to continue to make improvements to common property last year. Since 2018, when the focus was on the dock and the repair of adjacent landscaping, we’ve been concentrating on other areas in Lakeport, and that will continue next year.
At the end of last year, we installed a new hedge and a crepe myrtle to replace the hedge that was removed at the south end of Lakeport Way after it became infected with canker.
We’ve also been sprucing up the Triangle Park area. Two flowering native serviceberries were planted recently to replace the invasive and brittle Bradford Pears removed earlier, and other projects are already planned for this year, including work on the recently designated “Kids’ Garden” and planting liriope next to the RA path in Triangle Park to try to prevent dirt from washing into the parking area.
On Sunrise Valley Drive you’ll see some recent additions as well, the most obvious being the fence next to the sidewalk on both sides of the entrance to fill gaps in the existing fence. In addition, an arborvitae was planted to replace a dying tree removed next to the sidewalk, and the hill to the right of the RA path where it turns south from Sunrise Valley Drive to the pool now has native trees and plants, which were paid for by the County’s contractor who destroyed the vegetation there during the construction of the sidewalk on Sunrise Valley Drive. This spring we’ll be planting perennials at the entrance, which will end up saving money because we will no longer pay for annuals and their watering in our maintenance contract.
We will also continue our multi-year effort to tackle tree work throughout Lakeport, thanks to both professional arborists and volunteers. You can read the Landscape Projects article for more details and photos.
One other landscape enhancement I’d like to recognize is due to the generosity of Rich Shelton, who not only has cut down a number of trees in our community but has also designed (and paid for!) the new patio, low rock wall, and landscaping on common property next to his home at 1942 Lakeport Way (shown in the photo to the left). Once the weather and Covid permit, take advantage of this new Lakeport gathering area to visit with your neighbors or just relax. The Thanks to Volunteers article provides more details and ways others have donated their time and money. Please be sure to thank them.
As you may recall, this spring we are planning a major capital improvement that will further improve the appearance of our community: repaving Lakeport’s roads; repairing sidewalks, curbs, gutters, and driveway aprons; and repainting curbs, parking spaces, and speed bumps. Last year’s Reserve Study scheduled this project for 2021, and at the 2020 Annual Meeting owners approved the expenditure for it. Also, don’t forget that this year RA will conduct inspections of the exteriors and landscaping of our homes. If you know of something that needs to be fixed, now would be a good timeto have that done.
Let me close by talking about the quality of life in Lakeport. In case you haven’t heard, Money magazine named Reston #1 in the 10 Best Places to Live if You Work From Home. Check out the article to remind yourself why Reston is such a great place to “live, work, play.”
The same could be (and was) said about Lakeport. In January, the Board sent a survey to the Lakeport Community so we could better understand what was important to you. The top responses to the questions about what people liked best or talked about with friends related to our great location, including Lake Thoreau and our proximity to shopping and entertainment. Lakeport’s common area and our lovely homes were also high on the list, as were the friendly people who live here and the community spirit, supported by valued social events, which we hope to be able to resume later this year. Please read the article in this issue of Ripples that summarizes survey responses and quotations from respondents.
As reflected in that survey, we’re fortunate to have friendly neighbors, but they are also generous ones. For instance, if you’d like to attend one of the Nats games this year, one of your neighbors can make that possible. James Pan, who has season tickets, is offering Lakeport residents the opportunity to go with him to some of the games. If you are interested, email him at email@example.com. In addition, as you may recall, Gil Blankespoor offered free firewood to anyone who wanted it. And, as mentioned above, Rich Shelton created the new gathering area for all of us to enjoy. Many others have volunteered their time to make Lakeport better or offered to help with the Kids’ Garden. It’s not surprising that Lakeport was designated 2019 Community of the Year. My favorite quotation from our recent survey describes our community this way: Lakeport is “a great place to live. We also tell our friends we plan to DIE here as well!”
I hope you agree that Lakeport is special and that you are able to enjoy winter here as much as our children have been.