Community Association of the Year

Small Category: Lakeport Cluster Association

Lakeport Cluster Association was named Community Association of the Year in the Small Category. They are managed by Select Community Services. This is the essay submitted with the community’s application.

By Mary Sapp, President, Lakeport Cluster Association

Lakeport Cluster in Reston, Virginia, is home to a wonderful group of community-conscious and caring people of all ages and backgrounds who enjoy its natural environment and constructed amenities and have banded together to achieve important goals. Your first impression is of mature trees shading quiet streets, a stunning vista across Lake Thoreau, and flowering bushes and plants wherever you look.  We have made this a friendly and attractive community of 82 townhomes by using our lake and landscape to create inviting gathering spots, and one of Reston’s walking paths winds through our community, encouraging residents and others to exercise, walk their dogs, admire Lake Thoreau from benches on our dock, and stop to chat.

Lakeport encourages involvement at all levels: active committees, community-enhancing projects, and civic activism via engagement with Reston Association to improve our surroundings and the broader community and with local officials on urban planning and redevelopment. When we need something, the community responds—be it shoreline restoration, an Easter Egg Hunt or welcoming Halloween firepits for trick-or-treaters, Neighborhood Watch, a movie night promoting the history of Reston, and even anonymous donations for charities and amenities that are beyond our budget.

Recently, when faced with a 130’ lakeside dock that needed replacement, dozens of residents discussed how to use our Reserve Funds and attended meetings to review the likely uses of the dock, its aesthetics, and its engineering foundation.  Cluster homeowners developed the final design, contracted the work to a builder, supervised quality control, and performed innumerable subprojects to improve the dock while staying under budget.  The result is a beautiful facility that will last.

Soon we will repave our roads and parking areas, and volunteers with experience in asphalt contracting and project management have come forward. This is not an isolated example.  We are a collection of people with a wide range of talents—technical, administrative, horticultural, etc.—and with the willingness to work hard for the common good of Lakeport via committees, other ongoing responsibilities (from maintaining Lakeport’s web page to cleaning goose poop off the dock), and ad hoc projects.

Lakeport’s Board, which meets monthly, assists owners by identifying areas needing maintenance through annual home inspections, revising standards to simplify repairs, and developing online resources (quarterly home checklists, expected home element lifespans, disaster preparedness guides, aging-in-place resources, and safety tips). The quarterly e-newsletter, regular community announcements, and timely responses to emails address other issues.

Life in Lakeport, however, is not all work.  There are many group and individual activities to have fun, meet our neighbors, and discuss topics of interest.  From our Book Club, to owners focused on supporting our local high school with scholarships, to TGIF get-togethers that rotate through homes, to outdoor parties, to a lake-beautification partnership with the art department at South Lakes High School, our residents understand the importance of “Play” in Reston’s motto:  Live, Work, Play.

Lakeport is a great place to live because of its good neighbors and beautiful scenery—truly one of the best communities in America.