20 Aug 2014
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"Running" Hyattsville

A birds eye view of a City Council debate, from a first time attendee.

"Running" Hyattsville

Recently, I got the chance to do something that I don't usually do.

I come to realize that becoming more involved in my community is important. , I can see Hyattsville really becoming a brand. So I decided to take myself to the one place where I could see who “runs” Hyattsville.

I attended a with optimism that Hyattsville would be able to show me something new. I decided that I wasn’t going to get dressed up in my professional wear but I would rather come as I was. Of course, I did not look like I was ready to speak any politics, my outfit was just a pure distraction. As a citizen of Hyattsville I wanted to see which council member would take the time to acknowledge me no matter my attire. For me this would show that they were capable of hearing issues and not focusing on “image.” It may seem a bit of out reach but one who does not judge a book by its cover is commendable, especially when it comes to politicians.

As I walked in I found blank cards to write down my questions for the candidates. I already knew that all of my questions would be arts affiliated. I walked to the second row and made myself comfortable. I gave everyone on the board a chance before I fell into my preconceived notion that “politicians will be politicians.” We can all sit and wonder how our city is run or we can go to these meetings where people debate to get seats on the city’s council.

While sitting at in the meeting I looked around and saw a handful of people that looked like they were in my age range. This made me wonder to myself, “Where are the 80’s babies?” I wanted to see more people in my age range there listening to the candidates. I listened to the council and mayoral candidates. They talked about taxes, sanitation, aging citizens and annexation. Never once did I hear anyone really focus on the arts in Hyattsville.

is being built as I type this column. There is an entire “brand” waiting to be built within the city. After the meeting I spoke with She seemed very interested in my ideas about how we could bring more of the arts to Hyattsville. I wish it was easier to speak directly to people that help run the city. I noticed during closing statements that almost everyone said that they have an “open door policy.” I don't necessarily believe that once the term is in play, everyone on the council will be available to sit and have a word.

What I will say is that , which for me means that there should be lots of work being done this term. I’m optimistic for the city, I want my fellow “80’s babies” to get more involved with the community they live in. This is our home and if there is an opportunity to give your input on how it is run, I suggest you become more involved, speak your mind, ask questions and get to know your city.

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