The regular Almanor Recreation and Park District board meeting was held March 11, but an hour later than usual at 7 p.m. to allow time beforehand for a special public discussion on the direction of future recreation in Chester, hosted by ARPD Trails Coordinator Carlos Espana.
Afterward, it was noted that the meeting was the last day for board President Colleen Garrett, who a few weeks earlier had provided her letter of resignation.
Garrett had been with the ARPD for a number of years, and the board members were sad to see her leave, but at the same time grateful for her exhaustive dedication as president of the board. They also recognized her excellent work leading board meetings and overseeing several ARPD programs.
Anyone interested in filling the board seat vacancy, and is registered to vote in the district, should contact the ARPD office to complete an application.
New board member sworn in
County Supervisor Sherrie Thrall was tasked with swearing in Chester resident Gage Ward, who fills in for the remaining term left vacant by outgoing ARPD board member Michelle Gosney through December. He and the remaining board of directors will have to reapply for new four-year terms in July.
Treasurer Susan Espana said the ARPD “currently has cash-on-hand in the amount of $67,945,” recorded on the Cash Reconciliation Report, with no outstanding deposits or checks on hand at the time of the meeting.
“As typically happens this time of year, our expenses vary very little, but overall our revenue is down a bit in these months when we have no income from district programs” with which to build up reserves, she said.
Revenues increase substantially in May, June, July and August, she noted, when the district sees an increase in income from its recreational programs and events like the Street Rod Extravaganza, for example.
She said total revenues from programs, including a balance carried over from the past fiscal year, amounted to $24,375, but year-to-date the amount is recorded as just over $13,000, explaining that’s because the larger total represented a carry-over into this fiscal year.
Espana added that the district has $26,008 remaining for capital improvements from the grant funds account originally itemized at $40,000, generously donated from the Collins Pine Co., she said.
Other reported expenditures by the rec district included office supplies and equipment expenses, budgeted at $1,050, with about $900 spent so far year-to-date.
Recent expenditures include the purchase of coolers for sporting events or other ARPD programs, soccer equipment, and mats donated to the new judo program that’s held at the Almanor Recreation Center on Thursday evenings.
Espana reminded the board members that Plumas County holds ARPD’s funds. The rec district board is responsible for managing revenue and expenses.
Board member David Slusher shared with the other directors that he had recently been in touch with Ryan Burnett via email, who has taken over as president and organizer for the Chester Little League program.
Slusher said Burnett was amiable to a $25 per hour rate per parent volunteer recruited from Little League to help the rec district with the 33rd annual Street Rod Extravaganza car show event scheduled for Sept. 14.
Newly sworn in board member Gage Ward will be taking over as the director of the car show, and remarked that he needed at least a month advance notice that the volunteers Burnett said he would provide for the event were fully committed.
The hourly earnings for up to six volunteers would be deducted from Chester Little League rental fees paid to ARPD for the use of the baseball field in Chester Park this coming season.
The agreement between Burnett and the rec district is designed to help the Little League program save money over the increase in fees being charged per its new contract, while guaranteeing volunteers would be available for the car show.
The board approved the agreement by unanimous vote.
This season, Bennie Johnson will coordinate the spring soccer program. The registration date for players will be announced in the coming days.
ARPD secretary Heather Patchen said Johnson had informed her that she wanted to schedule a time to meet to go over the logistics of spring soccer, as this was Johnson’s first time running the event.
Drama club guest
Meghan Whalen teaches a newly created after-school drama program at Chester Elementary School. She attended the board meeting to ask members about assisting her in the upcoming production of “Alice in Wonderland,” in which she’ll be enlisting first- through sixth-graders in different roles as an opportunity for students to be involved in the arts.
Whalen explained to the board that the drama club needed help in the form of donations as well as materials to design and construct sets for the play, fabric, and a skilled seamstress or two to create costumes for the student actors. A makeup artist is also needed. In addition, there’s a need for paint supplies, including fluorescent paint, two flood lights and particularly finding a quality sound system.
“It’s a great opportunity for students to acquire a range of skills,” she said regarding the value of the drama club, “not only in stagecraft, but also in reading comprehension, memorizing, confidence building, social skills and working with different age groups.”
Board member Shane Bergmann said that setting up a sound system can be a complicated process, but he was willing to stop by the school to check out the space where the play would be performed, and try to recommend a sound system that would work well inside the gymnasium.
Slusher asked Whalen if she could provide the board with an itemized list of things she needed so the directors could possibly contact people in the community who might provide support and materials.
The play will take place either at the end of May or the beginning of June, Whalen added.
For information on how you can help with the stage production of “Alice in Wonderland,” contact Whalen at [email protected], or call her at 521-5572.
The next regular board meeting is scheduled Monday, April 8, at 7 p.m. at the ARPD building, 101 Meadowbrook Loop in Chester. Preceding the regular meeting at 6 p.m., the public is invited to attend a special meeting to offer input on the direction of future recreation in Chester.
For additional information, call 258-2562.
New Fun Run route
The 40th annual Chester Classic 4th of July Fun Run & Walk has a new route this year after a fire destroyed the Mill Bridge last year that runners used to cross over, linking Warner Valley Road to the Collins Pine Trail and through the forest and back to Collins Pine Park.
Shane Bergmann, race coordinator for the Fun Run, said the race would now start at scenic Stover Mountain Road, off Highway 36. More information will be forthcoming in the next few weeks.