David and Yvonne Hartman have lived in the Valley View neighborhood of Brookfield for 33 years.
“We love this neighborhood,” Hartman said, noting he and his wife raised three children there.
But, over that time, there have been many comings and goings, and it’s hard to keep track of the new people moving in.
The Hartmans got to meet some of the newer residents June 10, when Valley View held a block party.
Although the weather was far from ideal – it rained at times and was chilly – about 50 people wandered over to a blocked-off Wildwood Drive to huddle under canopies, sample pot luck dishes, and watch as children played cornhole and tag, kicked soccer balls, threw footballs and romped on a backyard children’s playset.
“It’s nice getting everybody together,” said Leah Brant, who has lived in Valley View for seven years. “It’s nice meeting people we haven’t met yet, or people we haven’t seen in a while.”
Tori Lucy, also a mom of three, said the block party grew out of a Facebook group that was created to let neighbors learn about each other, share information on lost dogs and alert each other to suspicious activity.
“This was awesome,” Hartman said.
Like the Hartmans, Brant said she loves the neighborhood.
“It’s quiet,” said the mom of three. “We’re getting a lot of younger families, so there’s a lot of little ones for my kids to play with.”
Neighbors are planning more events to build community spirit. They held a community garage sale later in the month and there is talk of a “porch crawl,” Lucy said.
“We want to make it more of a community,” Lucy said. “I’ve had a lot of people ask if we’re going to do it (block party) again. I think we will.”
Boys in lower photo are Louis Brant, 3, at left, and Austin Farrand, 2.