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Minutes of Park and Recreation Commission, 04/27/2015

AGENDA: Park and Recreation Commission

RECEIVED 04/29/2015 8:30am
Michele R. Grande – Redding Town Clerk


Commission members: Degener, Chair; Palmer, Hunter, Jones, McClung, Valenti,

Staff: R. Blick, Katie Cieri

Mr. Degener called the meeting on April 27 2015 to order at 7:32 pm.


Motion: move that the minutes of the March 23, 2015 meeting be accepted as submitted. McClung, Palmer. Approved. Unanimous


Mr. Blick provided his monthly report for April. He highlighted the most recent information:

  • Budget vote is May 5, the capital items, turf field &RCC shelter will each be voted on separately.
  • Garden: 100% of gardeners have signed up, and the waitlist is short.
  • Field usage: the fields were opened on April 17 for three days, and then closed due to rain.
  • Topstone Fire Pit: a scout has offered to renovate the fire pit at Topstone. Mr. Blick met with him to review plans.
  • Graybeards are scheduled to do trail work in early May.
  • Topstone Beach: Lifeguards have been contacted regarding summer work. Tree work has been done at the park, more than usual due to the condition of the trees. When the new budget is approved, other Topstone improvements will be considered. Katie Cieri, Topstone Director, shared some minor lifeguard manual changes.
  • Adult softball league, this will begin April 29, 2015. Bats are provided for the teams to standardize the play.
  • Concert on the Green: letters have been sent out. Corporate donations are being sought. Additional musical events are planned for Topstone.
  • Town website revision: the design is still being worked on.
  • Computer Classes: The Tuesday night Arduino class is running for age 15 to adult age group and the Saturday Robotics is running for the 8-12 age group. Issues with software drivers on the computers have been resolved.
  • Athletic Field Maintenance: Zach Smith is helping with field maintenance for the next five weeks, and Mark Kilburn will cover the remainder of the summer and fall.

Motion: move that the Park & Recreation Commission accept the Director’s Reports as submitted. Hunter, Palmer. Approved. Unanimous.


  1. Request for party at Topstone: this is a repeat of an event last year. The request is for 80 people on June 27, 2015. Last year the event started at 5:30. Mr. Blick reported the group would like to arrive at 3 pm. He suggested a compromise, with the event beginning at 5 pm, (the time most patrons begin to leave the park), and extend the lifeguard time until 8 pm. A fee would be assessed, including the extra lifeguard time. Katie Cieri commented that the event went well last year, with no problems and believes the compromise would be a good one.
  2. Request for a high school graduation party that would include children and adults, with alcohol being available for the adults. The current P&R policy prohibits alcohol use at the park with two exceptions. The exceptions are for the Neighbor & Newcomers Lobster dinner (primarily adult attendees) and the summer music series.       Discussion followed. It was generally felt that the policy of No Alcohol should be followed.
  3. Letter regarding tennis court nets at Joel Barlow High School. The high school tennis court nets are removed during the summer months. A resident has suggested that the tennis courts should be available for use during the summer. Mr. Blick will discuss the issue with Athletic Director Mike Santangeli on a cooperative effort to provide tennis court nets for the summer months.


Mr. Blick reported that the use of RecTrack by the Heritage Center is going well.  Heritage Center and Park & Rec co-sponsored a program on Africa recently that was well attended. He is interested in co-sponsoring events of that nature to increase participation.  One of the Topstone summer events is a lunch with a swing band.

The concept of partnering with other groups is moving forward. A summer Topstone Concert is being co-sponsored by the local Temple.  A Mexican theme night is planned at Topstone that will include a mariachi band and food catered by Rancho Allegre.


Katie Cieri was introduced. She has minor changes to the staff manual. The leash ordinance has been included, and further detail on weather related conditions and safety precautions.  Changes in the boating policy for summer camp participants were reviewed, including the supervision, parental permission, etc.  State regulations now prohibit diving off the dock and that policy has been included in the manual. Maintenance tasks are now included in the manual.


Mr. Degener prepared a letter to the editor (Redding Pilot) in support of the proposal for a turf field and the vote on May 5, 2015.  He intends to have the letter signed by the P&R Commission.  After discussion, the following motion was made.

 Motion: move that the Park & Recreation Commission approve the letter to the editor of the Redding Pilot in support of the artificial turf field proposal for the Redding Community Center.  Palmer, Jones.  Approved. 5-0-1.  Mrs. Hunter abstained.

Mr. Jones reported on the meeting held to explain the Capital Expenditures. He presented a great deal of information regarding artificial turf surfaces at the meeting, including health benefits, injuries, etc. The local sports organizations are being proactive and getting the word out on how important it is to vote on May 5. A mailer, funded by a private resident, is also planned.


Motion: move to adjourn the meeting. Valenti,Palmer. Approved Unanimous.

The meeting adjourned at 8:34 pm

Submitted by Mary Maday, Recording Secretary



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