Tag Archives: parks

Councilmember Jack Hastings June Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my monthly newsletters! I am honored to serve you as your Surprise District 5 Councilman. One of my goals is to provide you with important city updates and information. I am always available to speak with you at jack.hastings@surpriseaz.gov, or by calling 623-222-1325. Please also follow me on Facebook at facebook.com/councilmemberhastings. To receive my newsletters by email each month, please sign up on my website, d5.surpriseaz.gov, and click the “Notify Me” link.

New Surprise Police Chief

The City of Surprise welcomes our new Police Chief, Benny Pina, who has served as the Peoria Deputy Police Chief since 2014. Pina previously served 25 years with the Phoenix Police Department. Congratulations, Benny Pina, and welcome to the City of Surprise!

Gaines Park Dedication

A baseball with a Floyd Gaines Park symbol.A dedication ceremony was held on Saturday, May 15, to celebrate the completion of Floyd Gaines Park. The park, located at 16001 N. Nash St., in the City’s Original Town Site, includes a lighted youth ball field, netting, fencing, restrooms, and a lighted and paved parking lot. Floyd Gaines was a pioneer in our community and an avid champion of its youth and parks and recreation services.

City Pools Open!

Surprise Aquatic Center and Hollyhock Community Pool are now open for limited-capacity swim lessons and open swim. Open swim fees for residents are $2 for youth (6 months-17 years) and $3 for adults; the non-resident fee is $5 per swimmer. Children 10 years and younger must be accompanied by a guardian 16 years or older. For more information, please contact the Parks & Recreation office at 623.222.2000 or visit surpriseaz.gov/aquatics.

Surprise Aquatic Center pool

Surprise Rotary Club

The Surprise Rotary Club donated a new tree at Dick McComb Park near the splash pad. Our contractors planted the tree on April 29 in honor of Arbor Day. As a thank you, the city presented a plaque to the Rotary Club.

Surprise City Council presents a plaque to the Surprise Rotary Club.

Phased Re-opening at the Senior Center

The City of Surprise is re-opening programs at the Senior Center in a phased approach, with limited front desk access and exercise classes available now. The Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St., is a hub for connection and activities for those age 50+ and adults with disabilities.

The Senior Center meal program has also returned to in-person sit-down meals. Call 623.222.1500 two days in advance to reserve your spot. A home-delivered meal option is available through Banner Olive Branch if you cannot participate in the in-person program. To see if you qualify, please call 602.264.4357.

Veterans’ Services

The Vetlink Foundation is offering a monthly Coffee for Vets event on the last Saturday of every month from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the City of Surprise AZ TechCelerator located at 12425 W. Bell Rd. Come enjoy free coffee and bagels and build connections with other veterans. Each event will have a guest speaker who will discuss a veteran-related topic. RSVP by calling 623.303.4355.

New! “Council Conversations” Show

Please take a moment to watch my latest “Council Conversations” episode for an update on summer programming and special events. I interviewed Sports & Tourism Director Kendra Pettis and Interim Parks & Recreation Director Paul Frie about the fun summer programs and special events happening here in Surprise. You can find the video on my website at d5.surpriseaz.gov.

Council Conversations Show June 2021

Retail Survey Results

The 2021 Surprise Retail Survey Results are in! Did your retailer/restaurant make the list? The city uses the survey data to identify our retail strengths and opportunities to bring additional amenities closer to home. Select survey insights are listed below, and the full results are available at surpriseaz.gov/retailsurvey.

2021 Surprise Retail Survey results summary

National Day of Prayer

I was humbled to have the opportunity to pray for our city at the National Day of Prayer on May 6. Dozens of worshipers joined as we gathered outside the Surprise Public Safety complex.

Councilmember Hastings gives prayer on a stage set up in front of the Surprise public safety building.

Surprise Water Update

Surprise Water Resource Management logoYou may have heard talk in the news media recently about the Colorado River and a potential shortage declaration. The Western United States, including Arizona and the Phoenix metropolitan area, has been experiencing a drought for more than 20 years, with an official drought declaration in June 1999. Drought is a normal occurrence in the southwest desert. However, as the drought in the Colorado River Basin continues to extend, the Lower Basin states of Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Nevada along with Mexico may face reductions in their Colorado River water deliveries through a “Tier 1” declaration by the Bureau of Reclamation.

What does this mean for Surprise water customers? A Tier 1 shortage declaration will not affect Surprise’s water allocation or its deliveries to customers. Although there will be no immediate impact on municipal water supplies, Surprise remains committed to water resource management and water conservation measures. Shortage on the Colorado River does not mean shortage for Surprise’s customers at the tap. Being efficient with water has been part of our long-term water management strategy, and our water conservation program provides resources to assist customers.

Furthermore, Surprise is not directly delivering its Colorado River allocation. Instead, we use our Central Arizona Project (CAP) water allocation to recharge the aquifer, storing water for future groundwater pumping. As always, water users must follow water-efficient practices to protect our precious resources. Find out more information about drought and how it affects Surprise water customers on our Drought Resiliency and Preparedness website: surpriseaz.gov/droughtmgmt.

You may be wondering how you can save water. Here are some water-saving tips:

  • Visit Surprise’s water conservation page surpriseaz.gov/waterconservation for water-saving guides, tips, and advice.
  • Surprise customers can track their water use through a WaterSmart portal and use real-time tracking to establish a water use baseline and set leak alerts. Customers can access the WaterSmart portal through the “pay my bill” option on Surprise’s Utility Billing website surpriseaz.gov/waterbill.
    WaterSmart logo

Meet and Greet

Councilmember Hastings meeting thumbnailPlease join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on June 12, at 9 a.m. at Chef Peter’s Bistro, 17300 N. Sun Village Pkwy. I look forward to discussing the latest city issues and answering any questions you might have. You can also subscribe to my Notify Me mailing list on my city webpage at d5.surpriseaz.gov so that you never miss any important District 5 news.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled Council meeting is June 15 at 6 p.m. in the City of Surprise Council Chambers, located at 16000 N. Civic Center Dr. City Council meetings are open to in-person attendance or you may tune in on surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or on Cox channel 11 to watch the meetings live. Instructions for virtual public comment will be available on the meeting agendas at surpriseaz.gov/agendas.

Councilmember Jack Hastings January Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my monthly newsletters. I am thankful and honored to serve you as your District 5 Representative. I look forward to the opportunity to provide you with city updates, and I am always available to speak with you at jack.hastings@surpriseaz.gov, or by calling 623-222-1325. Please also follow me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/councilmemberhastings.

2020 Wrap Up

There is no denying that 2020 has been a challenging year, but we still have many things to celebrate. The City of Surprise has seen many positive accomplishments this year. Below is a list of just a few of the great things that happened in our community this year:


  • Abrazo Hospital
  • Costco Wholesale
  • Fire Station 304
  • Waddell Road
  • Litchfield Road
  • Drop-off Recycling Program

Broke Ground:

  • Amazon Delivery Station
  • Fire Station 308
  • Public Safety and Evidence Facility
  • Greenway Road

City Center Development

Surprise City Center is continuing to develop and bring exciting opportunities to Surprise. The “Quarter at Surprise” retail marketing plan, located in the area of Bell Road and Bullard Avenue is now available. This 78-acre site plan lays the groundwork for a vibrant entertainment, retail, restaurant, grocery, and fitness destination! Additionally, a Marriott Springhill Suites has been approved for the northwest corner of Civic Center Drive and Elm Street. Keep an eye on our City Center webpage for current updates.

The Planning and Zoning Commission approved the site plan for the Town at Surprise Center project at their December 17 meeting. Town at Surprise Center is a gated rental townhome community on 5.4 acres located along Bell Road near Civic Center Drive. Site improvements will include 114 units, ranging from 1,200-1,367 square feet, paving, sidewalks, a pool, and landscaping. The final plat for this project is anticipated to go to Council on February 2, 2021.

New Park Coming Soon!

Surprise has continued to see growth in housing permits and retail sales collections. As a result, the City Council voted at the December 15 meeting to fund several parks-related projects. Included in this funding is the design for a new eight-acre park at Greenway Road and Parkview Place that will begin construction by the end of June 2021! This project will provide more programmable and rental field space. Additionally, Gaines Youth Baseball Field will be completed ahead of the original timeline thanks to additional funding, and Council also voted to establish a $3 million budget for enhancements to the Surprise Community Park. Enhancements could include adding a restroom, improving dog park drainage, and exploring new lighting. A final project list will be determined following design and submittal of actual costs. Keep an eye on the City’s website for updated information. All of these projects will advance the goals of the City’s Parks and Recreation Master Plan.

Recycling Update

Recycle Wise in Surprise logo.Please tune in for a recycling update at the January 19 Council Regular Session. Regular sessions typically begin at 6 p.m. Please check the agenda for specific times. To watch live on Surprise TV visit www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, or the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise. Cox channel 11 and Century Link channel 8513 also carry the meetings live.

Surprise Small Business Relief Grant

The Surprise Small Business Relief Grant program provided grants to qualifying local businesses to help with rent, utilities, payroll expenses, and other operating costs. Through the program, 79 local businesses were supported, and 483 jobs were retained! This program was funded in two phases, using CARES Act money, to help local businesses that have been impacted by the current health crisis. While the funds for this program have been fully utilized, the City’s Economic Development Team is always here to help support local businesses. For more information on resources available, please visit the COVID-19 Business Resources page on our website.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Celebration & Service

The City of Surprise Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Celebration and Service is being held virtually on January 16. Please tune in at 9 a.m. to Surprise TV or the City of Surprise social media channels for a virtual program featuring a variety of local musicians, performers, and speakers. Community service projects are also being scheduled throughout the day, but advanced registration is required due to COVID-19 gathering limitations. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact larry.garcia@surpriseaz.gov or call 623.222.1522.

COVID-19 Update

Vaccinations for health care workers and residents of long term care facilities, has begun. Distribution to these groups could take several months to accomplish and will likely be followed by distribution to essential workers such as police, critical infrastructure workers, and teachers. The general population could receive the vaccine sometime in the spring of 2021. The vaccine distribution is prioritized by the US Centers for Disease Control. For more information on how the vaccine distribution was prioritized, please visit the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/recommendations-process.html.

A new drive-thru COVID-19 testing location has opened in Surprise at St. Clare of Assisi, located at 17111 W. Bell Road. To schedule an appointment, you can visit https://embrywomenshealth.com/testing-blitz/

Covid-19 Testing Locations (AZ Department of Health Services) – https://www.azdhs.gov/preparedness/epidemiology-disease-control/infectious-disease-epidemiology/index.php#novel-coronavirus-testing

Maricopa County has free temporary isolation housing available for individuals who are unable to isolate with a bedroom or bathroom that nobody else can use or are high-risk individuals who live with infected family or roommates. To find out additional information, or to see if you are eligible, call 2-1-1 and dial 6 for COVID-19 assistance, or visit https://www.maricopa.gov/5565/COVID-19-Positive.

Community Resources

St. Mary’s Food Bank now has a home delivery option. Maricopa County residents that are unable to travel to a local food bank may be eligible for this program. For more information, call 602-242-3663, or visit St. Mary’s Food Bank – Covid Relief Home Delivery Sign-Up.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on January 9 at 9 a.m. at Chef Peter’s Bistro, 17300 N Sun Village Pkwy. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues and answering any questions you might have.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled Council meetings are January 5 and 19 at 6 p.m. Please note that Council meetings have been closed to in-person participation. Please tune in on www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or on Cox channel 11 and Century Link channel 8513 to watch the meetings live. Instructions for virtual public comment will be available on the meeting agendas at www.surpriseaz.gov/agendas.