Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

For the second year in a row, City of Pasadena departments, divisions and sites were invited to compete in a Halloween lobby-decorating contest.

The judges (including yours truly) went at noontime to the various lobbies. It was a real hoot!

And the winner is: The Environmental Health Division of the Public Health Department.

One of that division's responsibilities is restaurant inspections, so the employees transformed their lobby into a restaurant called Hell's Kitchen...

...with ghoulish waitresses in blood-stained aprons (one was named Salma Nella)...

...and code violations that would make even the most seasoned restaurant inspector run for cover!

Patrons could choose a cute little fishie right out of the tank!

The restaurant inspection report for Hell’s Kitchen:

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Drive-through Flu Shots

Yep, that's me in the photo.

City of Pasadena employees work with the public every day, so it's important for us to get annual vaccinations to prevent us from contracting and/or spreading the flu to constituents and each other.

In the past, I always went up to Pasadena Public Health Department for my annual vaccination. This year, for the first time, they conducted a drive-through clinic at the City Yards for hundreds of employees.

We came through in personal cars.. vehicles...


...and some parked on Mountain Street and walked through.

Even a couple of Pasadena ARTS buses were deployed to transport groups of employees from City Hall to the Yards.

For most of us, it was a simple matter of driving through, showing our official city ID, filling out a short form and getting the shot, all without having to get out of our vehicles.

Influenza strikes one in five people, causes 200,000 hospitalizations and 36,000 deaths annually in the U.S. Are you at risk? You are if you're among any of these groups:

* pregnant women
* children from 6 months to 19 years old
* adults 50 and older
* anyone with a chronic medical condition
* anyone who lives in a nursing home or long-term care facility
* anyone who lives with or cares for someone at high risk for flu complications.

Call your health care provider to arrange for the vaccination, or plan on attending one of these clinics in November when Pasadena Public Health Department will offer low-cost vaccinations to the public.

Wednesday, Nov. 5
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Pasadena Senior Center
85 E. Holly St.

Wednesday, Nov. 12
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Villa-Parke Community Center
363 E. Villa St.

Wednesday, Nov. 19
10 a.m. to 2 p. m.
Jackie Robinson Center
1020 N. Fair Oaks Ave.

Many thanks to Joy Guihama of Pasadena Public Health Department for the photos.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Need a Job?

If you or someone you know is looking for work, the City of Pasadena always has openings in a number of areas.

You can apply online or come to the Human Resources Department at Pasadena City Hall, 100 N. Garfield Ave., Room S135. The website is updated a couple of times a month.

Here's a partial list of current openings:

Business Tax Inspector, Finance Department -- Apply by Nov. 6

MASH Program Coordinator, Planning and Development Department -- Apply by Nov. 6

Electrical Craft Helper, Pasadena Water and Power -- Apply by Nov. 13

Project Manager for Capital Improvements, Pasadena Water and Power -- Apply by Nov. 13

Environmental Health Division Manager, Public Health Department -- Apply by Nov. 20

Utilities Accountant, Finance Department -- Apply by Nov. 20

There are about 2,300 City of Pasadena positions. While turnover isn't exactly constant, people do retire or move on, so go back to the website from time to time and check it out!

Monday, October 27, 2008

My Transom Window

The current Pasadena City Hall (the third historically) was built in the late 1920s. Part of the building was gutted over time to make way for more offices as the number and type of city services grew.

Prior to the three-year seismic retrofit and historic restoration, the Public Affairs Office was in one of those parts of the building, with lots of drywall, false ceilings, 1970s-era plaid curtains, you name it. Plus the original wood accents had been ripped out.

I can't imagine who would have ever approved such a thing, but it was done. Perhaps it was a sign of the times.

When I learned that Public Affairs would move into the former location of the City Attorney's Office upon the completion of the retrofit, I was thrilled because that's one of the most historically untouched parts of the building.

I love my door with the transom window above it. Here it is from inside my office...

...and here it is from the hallway outside my office.

I promise to be a good steward.

Sincerely Yours,

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Safe and Supervised Halloween Events

If you're looking for some safe and supervised Halloween events, on Oct. 31 or leading up to it, here's a rundown of city-sponsored activities. Events are free unless otherwise noted.

Wednesday, Oct. 29, 10:15 and 11:15 a.m. – Children ages 5 to 12 will enjoy Halloween Storytime at Hastings Branch Library, 3325 E. Orange Grove Blvd. Come in costume! (626) 744-7262.

Wednesday, Oct. 29, 10:30 a.m. – Bring your preschoolers ages 3 to 5 for not-so-scary stories, treats and a craft at Allendale Branch Library, 1130 S. Marengo Ave. (626) 744-7260.

Wednesday, Oct. 29, 4 p.m. – Children ages 5 to 12 will enjoy not-too-scary “Goosebumps” movies and sweet treats at Hill Avenue Branch Library, 55 S. Hill Ave. (626) 744-7264.

Wednesday, Oct. 29, 6 to 9 p.m. – Families with children ages 2 to 13 are invited to a safe event at Pasadena Police Department, 207 N. Garfield Ave., featuring Officer McGruff the Crime-Fighting Dog, the popular film “Haunted Mansion,” treats, goody bags, costume contest, safety information and fingerprinting. (626) 744-7650.

Thursday, Oct. 30, 4 p.m. – Children over 10 years old will hear spine-tingling and hair-raising tales told by local storyteller Leslie Perry at Allendale Branch Library, 1130 S. Marengo Ave. (626) 744-7260.

Friday, Oct. 31, 2 to 4 p.m. – Enjoy Halloween at Washington Park, southeast corner of El Molino Avenue and Washington Boulevard, with pumpkin carving, face painting, costume contests, arts and crafts, music, treats and more. (626) 744-8332.

Friday, Oct. 31, 5 to 7 p.m. – Grab bags, costume contest, games and prizes are among the activities at Villa-Parke Community Center’s Halloween Festival, 363 E. Villa St. (626) 744-6523.

Friday, Oct. 31, 5 to 7:30 p.m. – A Halloween festival at Robinson Park, 1081 N. Fair Oaks Ave., will include arts and crafts, treats, face painting, food, a costume contest and more. (626) 744-7330.

Have a spook-tacularly good time!

Monday, October 20, 2008

How Green Are You?

Have you taken our online Green Training yet?

The free 15-minute program was developed for Pasadena city employees, residents, businesses, non-profit organizations and others in the community. It also links to other resources and provides a glossary, facts about the Earth and easy tips for living and working green.

Once you complete the training, pledge your commitment to a healthy, sustainable Pasadena.

The training program supports our Green City Action Plan, which outlines more than 70 initiatives the city is pursuing to become more sustainable and environmentally responsible.

This is another example of how the City of Pasadena has led the way among municipalities. For example, do you know we have an environmental planner, an environmental analyst and an environmental commission dedicated to green programs? Most cities don't have either one.

Learn more about our Green City initiatives here.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

This One's for You, Daddy

I want to thank everyone for your support and patience over the past couple of weeks while my sister and I handled all the obligatory arrangements surrounding my father's death. And now, life goes on and I'm back in the office.

I walked around the City Hall courtyard yesterday for some solace in the middle of the day and took this photo of one of the rose gardens. We never had rose gardens in the courtyard, surprisingly, until after the building reopened in summer 2007 after the three-year retrofit and restoration project.

This has always been one of my favorite photos of my father. It was 1954 and he was the executive officer on the USS Siboney. Most of the other photos I have of him in the Navy are when he was in dress uniform, but here he's in fatigues, taking a well-deserved break on this escort aircraft carrier.

I found this photo after he passed away. My mother had written "The day before you left" on the back. She must have sent it to him with a letter when he was out to sea.

And here they are later in life, about 10 years ago. After his career as a naval officer, my dad became a teacher and vice principal, and then he and my mother, also a teacher, retired and did a lot of volunteer work together.

Thanks for letting me share. Tomorrow I'll get back to the business of posting PIO- and city-related info on this blog.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Still Out, But Coming Up for Air

I rarely post anything about my personal life on this blog because its primary purpose is to explain the role of a PIO.

Allow me to make an exception.

My father, Dave Easley, passed away yesterday. He joined my mom, Alice, in Heaven and had a huge grin on his face at the very moment he left. I know they were reaching out to each other. It was a truly holy moment.

After my mom died suddenly and unexpectedly in January 2007, my dad never recovered. They had been married 60 years.

I have been coming down to San Diego just about every weekend to try to build my dad up, take him on excursions and try to keep him engaged in life.

But nobody could help him. Not his family, not his friends, not his church, not his doctors. Many, many times he said he just wanted to go be with my mom, and now they are reunited.

I am grateful for the love and support and kindness that so many have expressed to me this past week while my dad went from emergency room to ICU to Hospice. The rapid turn of events has been monumentally overwhelming.

I'll post more in the next few days. For now my sister and two brothers and I will be consumed with all the necessary details and process that must be dealt with at a time such as this.

Once again, please bear with me.