Fabulous Fulton

Working to Improve Historic Sacramento Avenue

By Cathryn Rakich
October 2018

Anyone who has driven along Fulton Avenue, between Arden Way and Auburn Boulevard, has witnessed firsthand the good work of the Fulton Avenue Association. Most notable are the 13 landscaped mediums running down the center of the street, brimming with palms (lit up at night with little white lights), maples and valley oaks. Drivers also enjoy 36 metal light posts, each decorated with a large and elegant “F.” How about that smooth drive along the recently repaved road? All the credit goes to FAA.

“Every day, 33,000 cars drive up and down Fulton Avenue,” says FAA executive director Melina Eppler, who joined the organization in 2003. The results of FAA’s efforts have been “truly transforming,” she adds. “A huge improvement over what it used to be, which was asphalt and cars.”

Not every undertaking has been as visible or aesthetic. The first project FAA tackled in 2000 was to upgrade the mainline to the water-supply system. “Not very sexy, but extremely important from an infrastructure standpoint,” Eppler says.

FAA, formed in 1998, is a Property-Based Improvement District representing 2.3 miles of Fulton Avenue between Arden Way and the Capital City Freeway, as well as properties along major cross streets. The association’s mission is to

improve—from an economic, aesthetic and security perspective—the commercial area of Fulton Avenue. The district, which operates in five-year terms, was renewed this past July with 81 percent support by property and business owners within the district.

“Every property is assessed by the same format,” Eppler says. The assessment is based on each property owner’s square footage, plus the linear feet of street footage along Fulton. The annual budget is $432,000 under the newly approved assessment.

In addition to the landscaped mediums and light posts, FAA has installed six corner monuments—two at Arden Way and four at Marconi Avenue—with bronze plaques honoring the men for whom two streets were named: American engineer and inventor Robert Fulton, and Italian inventor and electrical engineer Guglielmo Marconi.

What does the future hold for Fulton Avenue? “The challenges we are facing with the transient and homeless population are significant,” Eppler says. “Our private security patrol and district cleanup crew (which account for 45 percent of the annual budget) have been putting in overtime the past two years addressing camping, loitering, panhandling and property crime.”

For more information on FAA, visit www.fultonavenue.com.

CRUISING ON A SATURDAY AFTERNOON

Hundreds of custom and classic vehicles will cruise Fulton Avenue—from El Camino Avenue to Marconi Way—on Saturday, Oct. 6, beginning at 3 p.m. CruiseFest 2018, hosted by the Fulton Avenue Association, is free. Proceeds from car-entry fees will benefit the California Automobile Museum.

Following the cruise will be a family-friendly street fair at 2700 Fulton Ave., with live music, food trucks and a beer garden. For more information, visit www.calautomuseum.org.

DRINK WINE, HAVE FUN, HELP ANIMALS

If you love animals, wine, beer and food, plan to attend Whiskers & Wine, on Saturday, Oct. 6, benefitting the Sacramento County Bradshaw Animal Shelter.

Beginning at 5:30 p.m., the event will feature an extensive silent auction, live auction and a “Lucky Dog” grand prize drawing. A buffet dinner, including vegan and vegetarian options, will be served by Aubergine Catering, followed by a dessert table by Miss V’s Dessert Bars.

The live auction will include an aerial tour of San Francisco Bay and lunch in Half Moon Bay, valued at $800, and a suite at a Sacramento River Cats baseball game, valued at $950.

Guests can tour the shelter and meet the animals, although no adoptions will take place. Tickets are $75 in advance and $100 at the door (must be 21 years or older to attend). For more information on purchasing tickets, becoming a sponsor, donating to the auctions or volunteering, visit team4animals.org/events1/ww2018. The shelter is located at 3839 Bradshaw Road.

‘… AND THE HEART REPLIES’ CONCERT SEASON

Bring the entire family to this season’s Sacramento Symphonic Winds concert at the new Rio Americano High School Center for the Arts. The 60-piece adult symphonic band is conducted by music and artistic director Timothy Smith.

This season, titled “… and the heart replies,” will include James Sochinski’s “The Legend of Alcobaca,” Frank Ticheli’s “Amazing Grace” and Robert Jager’s “Variations on a Theme of Robert Schumann (The Happy Farmer).”

This month’s concert will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 14. Tickets are available at the door for $15 for general admission, $10 for students and seniors, and free for children under 10. Rio Americano High School Center for the Arts is at 4540 American River Drive. For more information, visit www.sacwinds.org.

SUPERVISOR PETERS’ COMMUNITY MEETINGS

Sacramento County Supervisor Susan Peters will host two evening community meetings in Arden-Arcade and Carmichael focusing on road projects underway and planned for the unincorporated area as a result of funding provided through Senate Bill 1, which increased the gas tax. Speakers will be Mike Penrose, deputy county executive for infrastructure and public works, and Ron Vicari, county transportation director.

The Arden-Arcade meeting will be Thursday, Oct. 11, at 6 p.m. at Swanston Park Community Center, 2350 Northrop Ave. The Carmichael meeting will be Thursday, Oct. 25, at 6 p.m. at Mission Oaks Community Center, 4701 Gibbons Drive.

Cathryn Rakich can be reached at crakich@surewest.net. Submissions are due six weeks prior to the publication month.

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