Author Archives: merlehayadmin

COVID-19 impacts on MHNA events

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing MHNA to adjust its events calendar this spring. Shortly after our newsletter went to press in late-March, guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) were changed to discourage gatherings of more than 10 people. We also learned after our newsletter went to press that the Northwest Community Center has canceled all meetings indefinitely.

The MHNA board plans to host a conference call in the next week to figure out how to proceed with our meeting and events schedule in the midst of the public health emergency. We will make announcements as soon as possible.

Additionally, MHNA has been informed by the Des Moines Public Works Department that the annual Spring Cleanup to Reduce Urban Blight (SCRUB) scheduled for April 18 at Hoover High School has been canceled. Visit the city’s website for more information on how COVID-19 is affecting the SCRUB calendar:

Visit for the latest city updates and information on how city services are impacted.

Please check MHNA’s website and Facebook page for updates. And remember, please follow CDC guidelines, practice social-distancing, stay at home to every extent possible, and wash your hands. We look forward to seeing all of you soon!

MHNA’s next quarterly meeting is on April 16

Please mark your calendars for MHNA’s next quarterly meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 16 at the Northwest Community Center, 5110 Franklin Ave.

We have extended an invitation to Carl Voss, who was recently elected as an at-large City Council member. We’ll confirm meeting details as we get closer to April 16.

After April, our other quarterly meetings will be held on July 16 and October 15. Please plan ahead and make sure you invite your neighbors!

Mayor Frank Cownie to join MHNA on January 16

Des Moines Mayor Frank Cownie will be our guest speaker when the Merle Hay Neighborhood Association hosts its annual meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 16 at the Northwest Community Center, 5110 Franklin Ave. Please join us to hear updates from Mayor Cownie and ask a few questions.

We’ll also have the president’s annual report, neighborhood news, public safety updates, and perhaps most importantly – refreshments. 🙂

The meeting will conclude with officer and board elections. If you would like to run for a seat, please send an email to and we will connect you with our nominating committee. Dues must be current to run for a seat as an officer or board member.

Looking ahead, we encourage everyone to mark your calendars for MHNA’s 2020 quarterly meetings on April 16, July 16, and October 15. The April and July meetings will begin at 6:30 p.m., and the October meeting and annual supper will begin at 6 p.m. All meetings will be held at the Northwest Community Center.

Please join us and spread the word among your neighbors. Everyone is welcome! The more people who get involved, the more we can accomplish. It’s our neighborhood. Let’s work together to make it better.

2020 MHNA Meeting Dates

The New Year is right around the corner, so please think ahead and make MHNA a part of your regular schedule!

MHNA meets on the third Thursday in January, April, July, and October. Unless otherwise noted, the meetings start at 6:30 p.m. and are held at the Northwest Community Center, 5110 Franklin Ave.

The 2020 meetings will be held on January 16, April 16, July 16, and October 15. Please mark your calendars and help spread the word!

Renew your dues, or join MHNA for the first time!

It’s not too early to renew your MHNA dues for 2020, or join us for the first time! Please support the only organization that is solely dedicated to improving quality of life in the Merle Hay neighborhood.

So what does MHNA do? The short answer is: A little bit of everything. Think of us as the neighborhood’s eyes and ears. We work with the mayor and city council, police, the parks department, public works, engineering, county officials, and the school system. We work on civic issues big and small to help make the Merle Hay neighborhood a better place to live, work, and play.

MHNA membership is open to anyone who lives or owns a business within MHNA’s boundaries. Annual dues are payable at the annual meeting in January, or can be mailed to the association at: P.O. Box 31036, Des Moines, IA 50310.

Members may take part in MHNA decision-making on planning, development, zoning, infrastructure, streets and parks, beautification, and other community service and education projects, and social events. Associate memberships are available to those outside MHNA’s boundaries, though associate members may not vote on MHNA business.

Membership rates are as follows:

  • $10 for a church, school, or other non-profit
  • $15 for an individual
  • $30 for a couple
  • $30 for a business

Please join us and invite your neighbors to do the same!