Call to order: 7:00 pm Pledge of Allegiance Roll Call: Porter Park Board members present: Vice President Patty Raffin, Becky Maranto and Jessie Campaniello. Also present: Porter Park Superintendent Jim Miller, Porter Park Administrator Stephanie Miller. Park Board President Rondi Wightman and Town Councilman/Park Liaison Jon Granat were absent.
Approval of Minutes: Campaniello made a motion to accept the March 15, 2011 Porter Park Board Minutes as written. Raffin seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.
Consideration of Claims: Campaniello made a motion to approve the budget expenditure report for $1,751.13 dated March 15, 2011 through April 19, 2011 as submitted. Maranto seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.
Petition and Comments from the Floor: Jodi Perrine representing Daisy Troop 30187 from Bailly School, requested the use of the East Shelter, free of charge on Thursday, June 9th, from 5pm to 7pm for a bridging ceremony with a picnic to follow. Maranto made said motion. Campaniello seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.
Gary Cutter proposed a race as part of the 4th of July festivities for 2012 which would start and end at a shelter in Hawthorne Park. Ideally he would like to have the first race this fall. Raffin said the Park Board would be receptive to the idea and encouraged Mr. Cutter to come back to a future meeting with his plans and a mapped course for the race.
Park Superintendent’s Report (Jim Miller):Community center tile floors were scrubbed and waxed.
All Porter Parks and property have been checked weekly. A new repair list has been made, especially for Porter Cove Park.
All trash barrels are dumped and grounds are cleaned as needed.
A triaxle load of screened sand has been added to the ball field and graded.
Gazebo plant beds have been cleaned and mulched. That general area has been groomed.
All Porter Parks have been mowed for the first time this spring.
State Park Little League (SPLL) President Steve Engle said their organization cannot man their own concession stand. They would like Park Board approval to hire a third party vendor who owns their own vending truck. Maranto made a motion to allow SPLL to access a third party vendor to sell refreshments out of their own vending truck during scheduled game times at Hawthorne Park during their 2011 season. Campaniello seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.
SPLL has turned in all necessary paperwork except for a schedule of games.
McDaniel’s Fire Protection System checked the community center’s domestic backflow preventer and it passed inspection.
Nineteen applications were received for the new seasonal employee position. Six applicants were interviewed and two applicants are being considered seriously.
Jim Miller requested approval to hire Nutrilawn to replace the booster pump, back flow preventer, and piping, which was stolen last fall at the Hawthorne Park ball field area. This will restore the irrigation system to the way it was, not to exceed $1,100. Maranto made said motion. Campaniello seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.
The Community Center furnace and air conditioner need to be updated. Jim Miller will do more research and bring proposals to the next meeting.
Park Administrator’s Report (Stephanie Miller):Miller gave the Park Board the minutes of the March 15, 2011 Park Board Meeting and the March 2011 income statement. Spring is busy and many parties are being planned now using the Porter Park facilities this summer.
McDonald’s sponsored a food distribution (rent free) at the Hawthorne Park Community Center on Friday, April 1, 2011 from 3pm to 5pm, helping approximately 180 families in need.
The Kiwanis has invited a Porter Park Board member to their luncheon on Friday, April 29th, at the Westchester Public Library Service Center to donate to the park department.
Yost School has requested to bring two classes of children to Hawthorne Park in May for a field trip to learn about jobs in their community and the people who do those jobs. Arrangements will be made.
Old Business: Approved Caterers List: Raffin reported the Approved Caterers List is a work in progress.
Proposed Hawthorne Park Drainage: Raffin reported the Park Board has not heard back from Matt Keiser about the proposed Hawthorne Park drainage project. Although the updated version of the project presented to the Park Board was an improvement, the plan was not voted on and approved.
Easter Egg Hunt: The Easter Egg Hunt at Hawthorne Park on April 16th at 1pm was very successful with over 200 children in attendance, even thought the day was wet and rainy. The rain stopped ten minutes before it started and the hunt went on as scheduled. Refreshments were served inside the building afterwards.
July 4th reservations for the Town: Raffin reported the park department is reserving July 1st, 3rd, and 4th for Porter’s 4th of July activities at Hawthorne Park this year. In 2012, the whole weekend before and after the 4th of July (Wednesday) is being reserved for Porter’s 4th of July activities, until a decision is made which weekend would be best to have the event. Michele Blount from the Duneland Business Initiative Group (DBIG) asked if people would jump in and help with this year’s 4th of July Festival being held on Monday, July 4th. Vince Kisala from the Lions Club said his group would like to host a turtle derby and possibly a pancake breakfast at this years 4th of July Festival.
New Business: Presentation by Joel Pisowicz: Porter resident Joel Pisowicz proposed a nine hole disc golf course at the east end of Hawthorne Park, north and east of the gazebo. There will be no cost to the park or the town. The course will be funded by donations and fundraisers. Maranto made a motion to allow Joel Pisowicz to move forward in regards to donations and fundraising for the nine hole disc golf course in Hawthorne Park. Campaniello seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried. The goal is to have the disc golf course installed and ready for play by July 4th.
Gift Donation to Porter Parks:Raffin reported the park department was given a very generous gift of $5,000 for the beautification of Porter Parks by Bud Tilden, who passed away on Feb. 26th and arranged for this donation in his will. The Park Board thanked the Tilden family and appreciates the gift.
Supporters Group of Porter Parks:Raffin reported the Park Board would like to organize a group of people who would support, be interested, and help the Porter Park Department. The Park Board would like to name this group “Bud’s Buddies” in honor of the late Bud Tilden who loved the parks in Porter, and was at one time the Park Board President. Maranto made a motion to allow Bud’s Buddies of the Porter Park Department to form and move forward with the proper paperwork. Campaniello seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.
Background Check Implementation:Raffin reported a background check form is being considered to add to the Town of Porter employee application. The Park Board is waiting to hear from Town Attorney Patrick Lyp about the results of this implementation.
Summer Park Program Employees and Class Options: The Porter Park Department will be advertising for the summer park program positions approximately five weeks before the program begins.
Maranto reported she would like to bring the cooking classes called “Let the Kiddos do the Cooking” for intermediate age (5th & 6th grade) children back this summer. Maranto requested the help of a co organizer this year and said the class held in the community center kitchens last year was very successful.
Best Buddies Pet Food Pantry Storage:Cheryl Plomann is the founder of Best Buddies Pet Pantry. Her goal is to collect donated pet food and other pet supplies, and distribute these products to low income Porter County residents who own pets. Ms. Plomann requested the use of the community center basement to store and distribute pet food and other pet supplies. Her insurance for this project is pending. Maranto made a motion to allow Ms. Plomann to utilize the basement of the community center free of charge for one month on a trial basis to store and distribute pet supplies. Campaniello seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.
Festival Document:Raffin reported the Park Department has a festival document that the Park Board plans to update and improve.
Park Board Comments: Maranto thanked the large crowd for becoming involved and attending the meeting.
Next Meeting: The next Park Board Meeting will be Tuesday, May 17, 2011 at 7pm in the Hawthorne Park Community Center.
Meeting Adjourned: A motion to adjourn the Porter Park Board Meeting at 8:23pm was made by Campaniello. Maranto seconded the motion. The vote was 3 to 0 in favor. Motion carried.