Throw a Block Party
Getting all your neighbors together for an afternoon or evening has some nice advantages: You'll be able to develop more than a nodding acquaintance with the folks you're sharing air with, and you can begin to cultivate a little of the small town atmosphere missing in many subdivisions across the country. This has the potential for making life more pleasant for everyone. Knowing that someone you like and respect is watching to make sure your home isn't vandalized while you're away for the weekend can be a big stress reducer. The more neighbors you know, the more likely you are to find a few you wouldn't mind inviting over for lunch or poker night, too.
If you can get a couple of neighbors interested, planning a block party doesn't have to be that big an undertaking for any one of you. If your teenage son has a garage band, you've already lined up the entertainment. Add some folding chairs, portable tables and husbands who love to grill for a crowd and you've made a great start.
This is a bit simplistic, but things like picking a location, sending out invitations, performing follow up, arranging for food and designating a cleanup detail follow pretty organically once you start strategizing. If the idea gets some traction with the neighbors, you'll have plenty of volunteers and more creative ideas than you know what to do with.
Late spring is a great time for a block party. The weather is finally starting to show promise, so just being outdoors is a treat. Oh, and if the idea really takes off, consider making arrangements with your police department to reroute traffic around your location for a few hours. That way, there'll be less worry about the kids and pets.