Meeting with Doug Knight, Parks and Recreation

Friends of the Valdese Rec members and Valdese Lakeside Park donors were invited to meet with Director Doug Knight to go over the strategy for building amenities at Valdese Lakeside Park and ask any other questions.

The information from Growing Amenities Money was covered in detail. This lists the FVR fundraising goal and grants that will be applied for to build the greenway and a few amenities.

FVR will kick off the next fundraising round at the Waldensian Festival. They will be selling beer as a fundraiser and have materials available about the organization and VLP. FVR member help will be needed to man the booth. We hope to do park tours on Saturday of the festival.

Other discussion:

Insurance for the park – The park is covered the same as all town property – parks, Old Rock School, Rec, Town Hall. The insurance rate did not increase with the addition of VLP land. The park is explore at your own risk. North Carolina negligence laws follow the doctrine of contributory negligence, which bars recovery by the plaintiff if he or she is partially at fault.

Maintenance at the park – Currently covered by FVR – grass cutting and trail clearing. Once a real greenway path is constructed, maintenance will be a lot less – FVR can continue to handle that. If a mountain bike trails are constructed – a bike club will help with that. If a disc golf course is constructed – a disc golf club will maintain. If restrooms are added, a town employee would handle that on rounds – just like checking other parks. It is hard to talk about maintenance when we do not know what will be at the park and when.

Possibly setting up trust for dying people. Still checking into. As a 501c3, people can donate at any time and can donate in the name of someone else. Donations can be made to the general fund or to VLP fund.

Should we place a trash can at the park now? Need to look into animal proof. FVR members would collect the trash.

Could we clear the tree stands and make picnic tables from the wood? In the fall, we will have a big park cleanup to dismantle those stands, clear metal, etc.

How can folks in the community help and what can Eagle Scout projects be? Some of the problem is making sure we do not violate the terms of the Clean Water Grant – to make sure we do not build to close to the water or endangered plants/animal habitats. The next concern is not building a structure that would be where a future amenity would be based on the park plan. Doug will look into the general picnic area to see what can be done.

Can FVR hold a fundraising event at the park? Yes.

Could there be camping at VLP? Tent? RV? Need to check with clean water grant officials. Other concern is town’s ability to man the camp ground. Would WPC want to use their 5 acres that connects to the park (off Laurel Street) to manage camping? The lot touches VLP on 2 sides.

On a side note – would FVR be interested in fundraising for a redo of the basketball court floor at the community center? Still in the works.

Board Members: Beth Heile, Roy Sweezy, Don Brittain, Mark Rostan, Elaine Applegate, Gavin Smith
FVR Members and Donors: Pat Zimmerman, Joyce Brittain
Guests: Brenda Shuping, Renee Gavel, Doug Knight

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