July 2006 Meeting Minutes

Horner Park Advisory Council
Meeting Minutes

John Lyman, vice president, called the meeting to order at 7:07 pm. John chaired the meeting in Larry Brown’s absence. Jerry Giese was secretary for this meeting.

Previous Minutes: The June 5, 2006 minutes were distributed by e-mail as well as at the meeting. Alan Mueller moved to accept the minutes. Jerry Giese seconded the motion that was then unanimously approved.

Treasurer’s Report: Elaine Taylor was not at the meeting and the Treasurer’s report was not given.

Chicago Park District Area News: Kitty Connolly Gale introduced Tom McManamon as the new Horner Park Supervisor. Tom grew up in the neighborhood and is anxious to continue the good things at Horner.

Council Business: John Lyman discussed the Executive Planning Session that took place on June 29th. He described the Strength/Weaknesses/ Opportunities/ Threats analysis; best practices review; and project lists.

The next meeting is scheduled for August 7th pending vacation schedules and needs for a meeting.

Garden Committee: Suzy Novak described the Green Corps plant donation process we are part of each year. She also described her work in the boxes and planters in Manor Park and Buffalo Park. Her primary work at Horner has been weeding.

Suzy suggested that the addition of a planter box might work in the open space now in the Manor Playlot. She also requested additional soil for the planter boxes at Manor.

The plantings in the Horner Monument have been trimmed. Adam Schwermer has helped in that process. It was reported the up lighting for the Monument has now been cleared.

Performance Committee: The concert season is in full gear. Attendance has been good with 75 to 110 folks per event. Manor Bash is coming in August and the Performance Committee will work with Tom McNanamon to coordinate CPD resources with the HPAC and donated resources.

Website: We need to improve the image management capabilities of the website. We also need volunteers for web editing and content input.

Park briefs:

Horner Park:
The water main leak has been fixed. The sidewalk has now been scheduled for repair.

The outside faucet is leaking and needs repair.

There have been several complaints about garbage left by Little League team. The trash is being left at the diamonds while the trashcans are not being used. John Lyman will contact the baseball association to impress upon the coaches the need for everyone to maintain the Park.

This year was no different than past years with many impromptu fireworks displays based at Horner Park on both July 3rd and July 4th. There seemed to be more of these unofficial and unsanctioned fireworks the ever before. Any solution must be part of comprehensive plan involving police, aldermen and the CPD. To date there has been any impetus to form a solution.

The Junior Fieldhouse comfort station is reportedly been included as an earmark at the state legislative level. We have not received verification of the funding.

John Lyman placed an estimate for cleaning and restoring the Horner Monument in the records. The estimate is within the range of the fund surplus for the monument upkeep.

Ravenswood Manor Park:

Can the streetlight that was left in the park be removed?

We need to work with CPD and RMIA to develop a plan for the grassy area north of the pergola that is worn and muddy.

A Green Deed tree was planted in manor several years ago and then died. Has that tree been replaced? Is there an obligation through the Green Deed program to replace it? What if any records are available about this project?

Last year, the landscape team recommended using a drill to puncture the clay on the east side of the Manor Playlot to aid in drainage. Although there has been a change in personnel, can we review that procedure?

What is the status of the work order for a new kiosk for the Manor Park?

Buffalo Park:

We expect to begin fundraising for the seating area to begin in September or October. Our fundraising goal is $10,000 of new money. We already have a bit more than $2,000 in the bank.Jacob Park: We have received reports of at least 1 homeless person using Jacob Park as an encampment.

Sunken Garden Park:

Jerry Giese expressed his thanks for the work and resources Kitty Connolly provided for the Ravenswood Gardens Homeowners use of the park on June 24th.

The Sunken Garden park sign has been destroyed and removed. There is only 1 post remaining.

Baseball Fields at Horner:

Work on the current project began on or about July 5th. That project included upgrading backstops, adding safer dugout areas and some grading on the fields.

The soil mix is not part of this project. Several of those attending complained about the clouds of dust coming form the fields.

There was an article in the Pioneer Press on July 5th discussing the lights situation

Julie Peterson reported that Ald. Schuter’s office had requested an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the construction of the lights. She also reported that a citizens group had filed a Freedom of Information Act request (FOIA) for documents concerning the light proposal.

We have received no updates on a follow-up public meeting.

Pete Leki could not stay for the entire meeting but left a letter to be added to our records urging HPAC to keep advocating for the park users concerning the lights.

John Lyman discussed some of the public reports about the funding and uniform problems of the Horner Park Baseball Association

Adjournment: John Lyman thanked all the people who attended and participated in the meeting. The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Jerry Giese Co-Secretary

Roster of those in attendance: John Lyman, Vice President; Jerry Giese, Co-secretary; John O’Connell, Co-secretary; Alan Mueller; Larry Hodak; Suzie Novak; Tom McNanamon, Horner Park Supervisor; Kitty Connolly Gale, Area 4 Manager; Kevin Anderson; Pete Leki; Julie Peterson; Susan Malone; Jerry Jaecks

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