Historical Commission Meeting Minutes 07/06/2020

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Historical Commission minutes for July 6, 2020 – Zoom meeting

Present: Sonia Morrison, Diane Provenz, Celeste Watman, Judi Mabee, Tom Ragusa, Geoff Pigman, Lynn Geane

Guest: Charles Rosenblum

Called to order at 10:04 am

Minutes of June 4, 2020 approved with corrections

St. Paul’s – Diane thanked Charles for his generous donation of $10,000 and advised that we can now move the thermometer up !!! Vote approved to repay Lynn for the purchase of red, white and blue bunting to decorate the fencing around the church to make it and the donation thermometer more visible from the road. This will be put up on Saturday, Diane also advised she would speak to Brandy to ask Jim Crandall if he would mow the area within the fencing. It was brought to our attention that a board is missing form the steeple. Sonia will get a price to have it fixed and speak to Larry about it. A lift will be necessary. She also advised she just gave Brandy and Larry an estimate to have work done on the Harmony Hall roof.

Knox Trail Video – Tom discussed the walk held at the end of June on the Knox Trail with the Hilltown Hikers, Bonnie, Jessica, and others. He said he and Bonnie are planning to walk the Sandisfield section soon. The Hilltown Hikers have created a video of the hike with music and posted it on line.

OPT Website – Diane would prefer if a summary of each project / phase could be shown separately. Geoff has created the phases as: 1. Urgent restoration 2. Further restoration 3. Adaptation. He is working with engineer and carpenters for estimates. Sonia, Celeste and Lynne Geane are working on the website. No one grant will cover all projects, will need a spreadsheet to match fundraising goals with each available grant. Diane will post estimates of each project on the website with additional photos for each project. Tom said the contract for tree removal on church property was approved and our donation from the commission was approved,

East Otis Schoolhouse- Sonia is hoping to obtain some volunteer work- would like to put a PR piece on our local Facebook page to see who in town might be interesting in helping. Leigha Chaffee is interested in our playground project and will reach out to a local grant writer she knows who might assist us. Our engineer will will send updated drawings. Celeste and Lynn are also looking at grant opportunities and are waiting to hear from two sources. Suggested they also meet with Patricia from Rec Dept. She has information on equipment and accessibility issues etc.

Budget – Bonnie – video for a possible East Otis Historic District

New Business – Planning board asked for support for a Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Plan Grant – it would cover any type of emergency. They are hoping to expand to businesses to take part as well. Judi will send letter to Brandy to show our commissions support for the plan.

Art Work – Lynn Geane will call Karen Amonte to see if she would be generous enough to help with this project.

Complete Streets Grant – We are interested and Sonia will speak to Building Use committee. It can be used for ADA Compliance, parking lot, crosswalk etc. Diane asked Sonia to bring this up with Steve McAllister as well.

Timeline for projects/budget – Diane suggested we speak to Bonnie as far as timing and projects. Sonia noted that a lot of this depends on what is done in Boston and is out of Bonnie’s hands. Lynne advised it is easier to get grants for the church if it falls within a historic district – we need to continue to move ahead on that too.

Donations – Diane’s neighbor has a desk to donated to the schoolhouse and Michael Ernst has 2 desks as well. Barry Hawley will be giving us a tavern table from the Days Hotel and a table from the West Otis Church. We are now in possession of a chair donated by Marlyn Coffee’s estate and paperwork from Hank Wingate

Diane suggested we take a look at the Tolland Historical Society and West Stockbridge Historical Society to see what they have done

Next meeting Monday August 3, 2020 at 10 am on Zoom

Adjourned 11:08 am