Parks & Rec Minutes September 4, 2019

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Parks and Recreation Committee Minutes for 09/04/2019          – approved 10/02/2019                                                  In attendance: Steve Dell, Jim Gurr, Ruth Smith, Barry Snyder, & Laura Westerman   Absent: Jan Loveland & Bonnie Robbins


  • Community input: Someone spoke with Ruth about the parking situation at the Tennis Court Park. They suggested that lines be painted to help people know where they should park. Cars were parked in all directions which they felt made it unsafe. We agreed to recommend to the board that when they restripe the parking lot at the Community Center, they also consider striping tennis court park and any other paved township property where parking is allowed. 
  • Minutes from the 08/07/2019 meeting were approved as presented & will be published on the HT website 
  • Information from the June Helena Twp. Mtg. The parking situation at Safe Harbor was discussed and the HT Board wants P&R to consult with Burt Thompson at the Antrim Co. Road Commission concerning this. Laura and Barry agreed to represent the committee at a meeting with Burt Thompson. They will bring whatever information they get back to the committee for review. OLD BUSINESS
  • Ruth talked with Heidi Shaffer the soil erosion officer for the Antrim Conservation District. They have completed a grant request concerning erosion control at the Ball Park. Ruth will contact Heidi to clarify where we are concerning the erosion control permit process. The deed restrictions issue is on hold. If our application for the erosion control permit is approved, we will again take this issue to the Township Board for further action. 
  • Update on Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy (GTRLC)/ Helena Twp. Coy Mtn. Trail project. We are still waiting for the kiosk design / signage being done through GTRLC. Steve Dell will contact Steve Lagerquist to discuss progress toward completion of the kiosk design. 
  • Possible funding for land acquisition at Coy Mt. was discussed. Some committee members feel that the P&R Committee should start fund raising to support some of our projects. We will consult with the HT Board about us asking the Alden Volunteer group if we could come under their umbrella for fund raising for the land acquisition at Coy Mountain. AV is a 501 (c) 3 entity. 
  • Rick Teague has contacted Tamara Jorkasky at DNR concerning our Five Yr. Plan. She said no further documentation is needed at this time. It is important that the Five Yr. Plan be approved before the next grant cycle as we may want to apply for a DNR grant in 2020. We will continue to monitor the progress toward approval of the plan.
  • Capital Improvement Plan (CIP): Steve provided us with a draft site inventory form to use when evaluating each site for the CIP. We will use the time until our October meeting to give Steve input on the forms. The forms will be finalized at the October meeting.




  • Tri-fold brochures and some “high-tech” chips telling about our parks and community events. This will remain as an agenda item for October.


  • A majority of the committee agreed to present a recommendation to the HT Board that the Helena Township Forest management plan be to leave the Coy Mt. Reserve in a natural state. The exception to this will be to do needed work to maintain a safe hiking trail. Jim Gurr will put this in written form so that it can be presented to the Township Board with a recommendation that they adopt it as the Township’s Forest Management Plan for Coy Mountain Preserve.                    


  • Laura and Barry will contact Burt Thompson, Antrim Co. Road Commission, to discuss parking at Safe Harbor. They will bring their findings back to the committee for further discussion. As we inventory each park for the Capital Improvement Plan, we will be evaluating parking safety and accessibility to the park.  
  • A way to recognize work done for the Township by volunteers was discussed. The majority felt that an article in the paper would be a good way to recognize the volunteers who helped with the Coy Mt. Trail rework project and also to promote the new improved trail. This item will be discussed with Jan at the next meeting to see if she will take on this project.


  • Community money donations for the preservation/ next resurfacing of the tennis courts in Tennis Court Park. The committee sees Alden Racquet Sports Committee (ARSC) as the main entity for soliciting funds for the tennis courts. However, we will also check to see if an account that is dedicated to tennis court expenses can be maintained by the township. When soliciting representatives of ARSC will try to make it clear that donations to ARSC are being made to a 501 (c)(3) eligible entity and that ARSC is the ‘main’ fund raising unit for the tennis courts. 
  • Annual review of the P&R website. This has begun and there will be a report given at the October meeting. 

    Respectfully submitted by Ruth Smith 09/06/2019               


  1. The next monthly meeting is scheduled for: Wednesday, October 2th, 2019 at 7pm in the meeting room at the Community Bldg.