Parks and Recreation Minutes – August 19, 2014

Minutes of the Parks and Recreation Committee Meeting – Alden Community Center
Meeting date: August 19, 2014                                                                               Approved 9-16-2014

In attendance: Jim Gurr, Ken Masck, Carolyn Nowfel, Dave Peterson, & Ruth Smith.
Absent: Mike Crawford, Steve Dell, & Jan Loveland.

  1. Community Input: none
  2. Minutes from 07/15/2014 meeting -approved as presented and will be published on the HT website.
  3. Information from June Helena Twp. Mtg.: report on file following the last page of these minutes.


  1. Protocols and procedures:  The application form and grid #1 which uses a scoring scale of 1-10 were approved for use by the HT Board 8-14-14. They understand there may be modifications made if we discover the need. The committee decided not to publish the forms on the Pk and Rec web site until we feel that we are close to the final revisions of the forms.
    5. Review our 5-year-plan – Dave has talked with Heidi Schaefer in preparation of setting up a meeting to discuss Ball Park and other parks and proper land management near the lake. Ken is waiting on a survey of Coy Mt. before moving forward. The survey has been ordered and we are waiting for its completion.
    6. Application for Recreational Passport Grant.  There is nothing new to report.
    7. Walking path request from the Friends of the District library group.  Ken will ask the District Library group to complete sections 1 & 2 of the new application. The plan is to use grid #1 to review the project during the Sept. meeting..
    8. Formation of Helena Community Fund Group. Steve, Ruth, and John McDonald met with Steve Wade and Alison Metiva of the Antrim, Benzie, GT, Kalkaska, and Leelanau Community Foundation to discuss how the Foundation is set up and how our Fund would fit in.  Jim Gurr suggested people might be more willing to send support money to a local Foundation such as one in Mancelona. Another meeting of our local group is needed to discuss moving forward.
  2. Application to GT Band for 2% funds for resurfacing the Alden Tennis Courts. We did not get the grant.
    10. Joint Pk & Rec. and USTA project to introduce GT Band Campers to tennis. Steve had further contact with Tyvin Whittaker, camp director. Tyvin said everyone loved the tennis experience but no further days were set up.
  3. Coy Mt. – nothing further to report.  We are waiting on completion of the survey. We still need to check for any deed restrictions. We also need to research whether HT made any ‘promises’ to the DNR regarding further land use during the process of obtaining the Trust Fund monies to make the last Coy Mt. land purchase.
  4.  There was further discussion of what signage would be best at the Parks and road ending.  Dave presented information  on what signs are currently posted.  He gave a hand out to committee members asking that they be prepared at the September meeting to discuss possible improvements in design, content and verbiage.




August 19th, 2014 Minutes of Parks and Recreation Committee Meeting  Continued

  1. DNR plaques at 3 parks that used DNR funds.  Ruth has found information showing that we need DNR plaques at Depot Park, The Community Center and Coy Mt.. The DNR sign we have at Coy Mt. now is a medallion and a plaque is mandated. This information will be shared with the HT Board for action at their September meeting.  Information for the online site for ordering the plaques will be shared with Joyce Looman.
  2. Coy Mt. Does the Parks and Rec. Committee want to pursue the acquisition of the “parking lot” property and / or adjoining property that is for sale at Coy Mtn.?  If so, develop an action plan and take to the Twp. Board.  This will be put forward for discussion after we have the Coy Mt. survey results.
  3. Possible restrictions at Depot Park due to Historical site designation. Dave contacted the ‘State Historical Society’(?) and was told that the only restrictions that would pertain on the property would be if the Depot building itself were to be modified.


  1. Communication referred to Pk and Rec Committee by Rick concerning Mary’s Beach/Tyler St. access. This situation was addressed at the August HT Board meeting and they will be following up concerning this letter. See notes from HT Meeting at the end of these minutes.
    17. Prioritize “future agenda items” – advanced to the September agenda.  An additional item is to be added – discussing the idea of requesting a small millage to be used for upkeep of HT Parks.
    Other Agenda Items:


 Action Items needed / Individual Assignments to be completed:

  1. To work on action steps for the Community Center to move toward the goals and objectives stated in the Five Yr. plan.
  2. May contact colleges concerning the possibility of students taking on a project to work on a site plan for the Alden Ball Park.
  3. Dave:
  1. Will talk with Heidi Shaffer about meeting with us to look over HT properties and discuss water access. He has talked with Heidi but no date has been set yet.
  2. To work on action steps for the Ball Park to move toward the goals and objectives stated in the Five Yr. plan.
  3. To contact Bert Thompson, A.C. Rd. Comm. re: proper protocol and costs for placement of signs at the access sites / Parks (?)
  4. To work with Ruth on listing what signage we have / need at public access sites / parks(?)
  5. Actions completed:
  1. Presented information on signage.. To further discuss signage at various Pk & Rec sites with Committee in September.
  2. Contacted the Michigan Historical Society (or whomever) and found out no restrictions exist at the Depot Park because of the historical site designation unless the Depot building itself is involved.


August 19th, 2014 Minutes of Parks and Recreation Committee Meeting  Continued

Action Items needed / Individual Assignments to be completed continued:



  1. 1.  To work on action steps for the Depot Park to move toward the goals and objectives stated in the Five Yr. plan.
  2. Ken:
  1. To work on action steps for steps for Coy Mountain to move toward the goals and objectives stated in the Five Yr. plan.
  2. After the survey is completed – work with Brad Gerlock to help asses issues of trail maintenance and possible trail development at Coy Mountain.Ruth:
      1.The approved July minutes are to be sent to Joyce Looman for publishing online.
    2. The August minutes are to be prepared for review by the Committee.
  3. Mike:
    Has asked for abstracts for the HT Coy Mt. and Ball Park properties and will share them with the Comm.

  4. To work on action steps for steps for Tennis Court Park to move toward the goals and objectives stated in the Five Yr. plan.
  5. To work with Dave on listing what signage we have / need at public access sites / parks(?)
  6. Actions completed:
    a. Sent June minutes to Joyce Looman for publishing online.
    b. Prepared July minutes for committee review at August meeting.
  1.  Researched how to purchase the needed DNR recognition signs for Depot Park, the Community Center, & Coy Mt. and has shared this information with the Dave & Joyce Looman.
  1.    To work on action steps for steps for Tennis Court Park to move toward the goals and objectives stated in the Five Yr. plan.
    Actions completed:
  1.   Worked with Rick to review the application and scoring grid that has been developed.

These items will continue to be carried forward until they are discussed by the Committee

  1. October – Discuss fee schedule for use of Park or pavilions or……
    2. Discuss handicap parking in Helena Township.
    3. Discuss developing a plan for a reservation system for all township parks.
    4. Discuss doing a memo to the Twp. Board about placing signs at all parks to clarify that the township owns them and who to contact if there are questions or concerns about the site. This is to be discussed after the committee has a chance to visit all the Parks and Road Access sites this Spring/Summer.
  2. Maps we use for Pks & Rec. Five Yr. Plan + are correct? – keep contact with Dan Roketenetz on this. Be sure the signs at the Lake St. and other sites give the public a clear idea of what is public and what is private land.

August 19th, 2014 Minutes of Parks and Recreation Committee Meeting  Continued

These items will continue to be carried forward until they are discussed by the Committee

  1. Work to update the Parks and Recreation pages of the Helena Township web site.
  2. Mike mentioned the AAU Sports / Recreation Complex – Morey Complex- and suggested that they may be     looking to locate a similar complex in Northern Michigan.
  3. Look into the possibility of Flo McCormick (MI Assoc. of Counties) helping with writing any Pks. And Rec.
    grants. (Mike Crawford). Determine a grant writing resource and consider a grant recommendation review committee (P&R Committee – ?) that would review grants and give input to the Township Board (Rick)
    9. Consider Keith Charters as a resource for Pk. & Rec. projects.
    10. Riparian rights / possible review by township attorney (Dave)
    11. Any new equipment (picnic tables, benches, etc.)should not be made of wood (Rick) – see Rick’s page
    12. Further discuss Alden Safe Harbor and its park status / ownership – memo to Board?
  4. Research rules and laws governing road ending lake access sites (Steve, Ruth)
  5. Deed restrictions for Helena Twp. Parks are to be reviewed. (Bring copies of deeds -Steve)

15 Check  responsibilities of the Parks & Rec. Committee outlined in the current HT Master Plan.

  1. Talk about a possible future request for a low % millage to help fund our Parks.

The next monthly meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 – 3 PM at the Helena Township Offices.

Respectfully submitted by Ruth Smith

Parks and Recreation related notes from the HT Board Meeting August 14, 2014

    1. I presented the paperwork that Pk. & Rec. approved concerning suggested projects in Township Parks. The board was appreciative of our efforts and said it was very thorough. They had no further suggestions. I also explained that the forms might change over time as we see ways to improve the process. The idea of publishing the process and forms on the website was also presented.


  • There was continued discussion of how to best handle fireworks. Sheriff Dan Bean reported that they are trying to clarify the current law. They believe that in our community fireworks would be banned from 1-8AM.   Even if the Township passes an ordinance further limiting times fireworks can be used there needs to be a plan in place for enforcement.
  • Overnight Mooring of boats. We have the ordinance and need to have a way to enforce this. Sheriff Dan Bean said officers could enforce but not as a first priority if they are needed at other locations.   The idea of a constable to enforce our local ordinances was discussed.
  • The road closed by the county – going from the park to Mary’s beach was discussed. The idea of jurisdiction came up. It was suggested that the road commission has jurisdiction. The Township has taken this problem on. Dave is going to suggest to the person who sent the email that they contact the County to state their concerns.
  • The air conditioning system is now being installed in the Community Building.
  • There has been concern expressed about blocking off some of the road ending so that cars will not go to the water and there is a safe space for pedestrians. This was brought up for Union Street, Elder Road and Franklin Street. The idea of boulders was discussed. Someone pointed out this is what they have done on the Clearwater road ending. Presented by Ruth Smith – to the best of my memory J.