The Village Voice

Recent Announcements

  • ZVRA Annual Picnic September 21 @ 6PM
    The annual picnic will be on September 21, 6:00PM at the residential section of Main Street.

    Please consider bringing a dish or a dessert to share.  Hot dogs, Burgers, and vegetarian options will be provided. 

    Invitations were also extended to the Zionsville Fire Department, Zionsville Police Department, the two mayoral candidates (Tim Haak & Emily Styron), and the District 4, District 5, and At Large Town Council candidates this year.  This will be a great opportunity to thank the ZPD and ZFD for serving our community, as well as a chance to meet the candidates that will be our future elected officials. 

    I also want to highlight that we are looking for volunteers to help set up at the beginning and clean up at the end.  Please e-mail: if you are interested.
    Posted Sep 8, 2019, 6:46 AM by phillip martini
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Letter from the President:

Dear Neighbors –

I hope you have had a great summer! With school back in session, it feels like fall is officially here. I’m definitely looking forward to the leaves changing color, the chillier days, and football season.

August Meeting Recap: Our August meeting included a presentation by Dr. Scott Robison, Superintendent of ZCS, along with Mike Shafer and Becky Coffman regarding the two school referendums that will be on the ballot this November. The second part of the meeting was a mayoral town hall with Tim Haak and Emily Styron. I would like to extend a big thank you to all of our guests that night for taking time out of their busy schedules to meet with our VRA members and hear our questions and concerns. We had a great turnout for the event and hopefully everyone learned something useful that evening.

Weekly E-mails: You may have noticed VRA weekly update e-mails showing up in your inbox each Sunday evening. I have started compiling a list of Village/Zionsville events each week, along with any news articles I find about the Village or Villagers, and sending it out each Sunday. If you know of any good news or event sources, please let me know. I’m always happy to find new sources of information. As a reminder, if you do not wish to receive the weekly e-mail but would still like to get the monthly Village Voice e-mail, you can change your e-mail frequency settings in the footnote the e-mails. Choose “Less Frequent” for monthly e-mails only.

Annual Picnic: Our VRA annual picnic will be on Saturday, September 21 at 6pm. In honor of this election year, we have invited Tim Haak and Emily Styron, our two mayoral candidates, along with the At Large, District 4, and District 5 Town Council candidates to the picnic. We are also looking for volunteers to come up with ideas for kid games/activities. If you are interested in coordinating the kid activities or just have an idea pass along, please e-mail me at

September VRA Meeting: Our September meeting, a town hall with the At Large, District 4, and District 5 candidates, will be at 7:30pm on September 24 at the SullivanMunce. This will be another great opportunity to get to know the candidates that will be on the ballot this November and hear about their platforms. If you have any questions for the candidates, you can e-mail them to me at You may also ask questions to the candidates at the event via index cards submitted to the moderator.

Last but certainly not least, please tell your neighbors about the VRA and invite them to join! They can either sign up through the website or attend the next meeting. There are several benefits to joining, such as meeting others in the Village community, learning about plans/events that affect the Village and participating in VRA social events.



Town Council Insights:

I had a nice lunch with our fire chief, Jamie VanGorder, a few weeks ago to hear about progress in the department and how the general mood is these days (spoiler alert: it’s good).

One interesting discussion item we had was about our Insurance Service Office (ISO). ISO is an independent company that serves insurance companies, communities, fire departments, insurance regulators and others by providing information about risk. The ISO classification system ranks departments on a scale of Class 1 to Class 10, with 1 representing the best in property fire protection and 10 indicating that the area's fire suppression program does not meet ISO's minimum criteria.

ZFD recently improved from a 4 to a 2 (effective November 1), placing them in the top 2% of fire departments in Indiana. While it is good to know that we have a top-notch fire department ready to serve our community, there is also a financial benefit to each of you with this rating. Communities with lower (better) ISO ratings have lower homeowner insurance rates because actuaries know ISO can impact how quick and how much loss can be mitigated through the work of those first responders. You may want to mention this to your insurance company to see if there are additional breaks offered with our recent improvement. We can all thank Jamie and the department for that extra cash in our pockets.

Speaking of cash, Council recently authorized automatic CPR machines for the fire department. These are machines that perform CPR on a patient in a very controlled and rhythmic way allowing first responders to concentrate on getting a patient to a hospital. An added benefit is eliminating both errors and fatigue as CPR is performed during transit.

As the Town continues to grow, so does the fire department. They are hiring for Full-Time Firefighter/EMT, Firefighter/Paramedic, so if you know anybody interested please have them either visit or get a paper application from the Zionsville Fire Department Administrative Offices at 1100 W. Oak St., Zionsville between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. EDT Monday through Friday.

Lastly, as Jamie and I finished up our lunch, I asked him if there was anything he’d like the neighbors to know. He told me that if you have an issue (smoke, fire, medical) to please call them. They are here to serve you and want to help. That echoes the same sentiment given to me by ZPD Chief Rob Knox.


At Home in the Village of Zionsville

In 1849, Polly and Elijah Cross sold a piece of property in Zionsville, to Mahala and John Bragg. John was a Civil War veteran and a member of the Grand Order of the Republic, an organization of honorably discharged veterans of the Union Army, Navy, Marine Corps who had served between April 12, 1861 and April 9, 1865. John, a Master Bricklayer, was well-qualified to make the bricks he needed for their home. But first he needed to build the kiln in which to fire the bricks. John worked hard to complete the home before the birth of their first child. Most likely he worked day and night, digging the foundation, making and stacking the bricks, pouring over plans in the day light and by lantern light.

Today, the house at 110 N 3rd St. stands as testimony to his skills. Homeowners Cyndy and Jamie Reynolds, have created a home that respects the integrity of the 186o's design. The interior walls have exposed bricks in areas that highlight John's craftmanship. It is one of the few historic houses in Zionsville with the original floor plan intact. The double-sided fireplace in the living room, the former kitchen turned office, and upstairs bedrooms are essentially as they were in the 1870's, with some modifications. Jamie and Cyndy love it's close proximity to Zionsville parks, the restaurants on Main St., the ease and sense of living in a slower-paced close-knit community. Jamie and Cyndy are sad to be moving from Zionsville and will keep close to their hearts their fond memories of life in the Village.

 Submitted by Delma Mindel

SullivanMunce Cultural Center

Press Release: SullivanMunce Cultural Center:

225 West Hawthorne Street Zionsville, IN 46077

Open Tuesday through Friday 10 am to 4 pm / Saturday 11 am to 3 pm

The SullivanMunce is hosting Walking Tours of Zionsville, through October

Join us for a fun and engaging walking tour of the charming village of Zionsville.  Be a history detective and learn about some of the colorful early businesses, residents and events of our historic town.

Registration required.  First come, first served basis. Groups will be limited to 20 persons.

Cost of tours:  $5 per person, children 10 and under free.  Free for members of SullivanMunce Cultural Center. 

Please call or email us: to register.

VRA Events

November Election Notes:

From ZCS: Support the Zionsville Facilities & Operations Referendum

Protect Class Sizes— 200 new students annually1 over the next decade require
more classroom space and teachers

• Stop overcrowded classes
• Prevent losing reading, math, science, music and PE specialty teachers & the
reduction/elimination of major curriculum such as Project Lead the Way and
AP, robotics & languages classes
Protect Property Values— Strong schools = Strong property values
• Reputation of excellent schools increase the value of homes
• When the 2010 referendum failed, Zionsville home values dropped while
neighboring home values increased2
Student Population Growth— Schools have NO ROLE in community growth
a. By state law, school districts do not have a vote on the local
Redevelopment Commission; and, therefore have no authority to
effect neighborhood development
i. The Zionsville School Board testified before the Indiana State
Legislature seeking a change in law to allow schools a vote on
Redevelopment Commissions and thus able to advocate
concerns of community growth and the effect on schools
b. Zionsville had a net 200-plus students this semester
c. Voting no will harm our students, harm our community and harm our
home values which are directly linked to the reputation of our schools

Two School Referendums Will Be on the November Ballot

Facilities Referendum
The facilities referendum will provide bonding authority to build a new elementary
school, expansion and modifications to the high school, and
modifications/improvements to all other schools
o Two elementary schools are at capacity today and the high school is
nearing capacity
o Additional classroom space will protect class sizes, eliminate the need
for semi-annual redistricting, and safeguard curriculum

Operating Referendum
The operating referendum will extend the current referendum for 8-years at the
exact same rate the present referendum provides
a. Referendum will protect class sizes from exploding
b. Funds at least 1/3 of all teachers
c. 100% of referendum dollars stay in Zionsville to fund teachers

What would have happened in 2015 if the current referendum failed?3
• Class sizes increased all grade levels, significantly (see below for example)
• 120 positions cut & major programs eliminated: specialty teachers for
reading, math, science, art, PE as well as STEM, AP, robotics, labs etc.
Remember what actually happened in 2010….4
• Cuts were harsh, impactful, and swift
o 150 positions were eliminated
o Elimination of Baccalaureate program, elementary specialized
teachers: reading, math, science, music & PE. Reduced or eliminated:
labs, AP classes, language
• Crowded classes with 40+ students
o Classes with 21 to 29 students: 249
o Classes with 30+ students: 223
o Classes with 35+ students: 45
• Home values declined at time when nearby community prices increased
o Compelling correlation between strong schools & community