Recreation Commission Meeting Minutes 09/24/2019

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Recreation Commission

September 24, 2019, Tuesday @ 6:00PM

Harmony Hall, 70 North Main Road, Otis, MA



Meeting called by & time:  Dana Pustinger, 6:15PM.

Meeting facilitated by:  Dana Pustinger.

Board Members Present: Dana Pustinger, Jen Catolane.

Board Members Absent: Bill Dyer, Kathy Carroll.

Others Present:  Patricia Richard, Program Supervisor.


  1. Introductions. None needed.
  2. Review & approval of Meeting Minutes.  Reviewed & approved 8/27/19 meeting minutes.
  3. Accounting.
    1. Town Accountant Reports.  Received today, not enough time to review prior to meeting.
    2. Rec Center Reports.  Reviewed.
    3. Update on new Town Accounting software.  No update.
  4. Rec Center.
    1. Planning Board meeting regarding Harmony Hall 9/17/18.  No update.
    2. AED Unit.  The Police Department purchase new units for this fiscal year, the old unit will be used for the Rec Center – it is currently missing replacement pads and will need to be installed in an AED box – these expenses will need to come out of Rec’s budget per Select Board.  The current budget does not have a line item for this expense therefore it will be included in the FY21 budget proposal.
    3. All Board’s update.  Reviewed.  Discussed the importance of outreach through Facebook – there were some concerns (email) from a resident about Town Beach usage – from no parking permits, non-Otis folks using the beach, etc.  It was discussed at the 8/27/19 Select Board meeting (Rec’s meeting was scheduled the same date so no one from Rec was able to attend) and BOS decided to have Rec remove Town Beach posts from Rec’s Facebook page – from opening day, opening for swimming, help wanted to the new sand were removed as requested.  Patricia noted to the Select Board/Town Manager that there are posts about the Town Beach on Facebook pages other than Rec’s in addition to Google, Berkshire Eagle, etc.  The Town Beach is listed everywhere online.  Otis Police Department will do more patrols to the Town Beach for the remaining beach season.  Patricia forwarded information from the Town of Becket – their Town Beach policy & their Beach attendant position – to Becky for review.  It was suggested by Becky to include a Beach attendant to the FY21 budget in addition to the kayak attendant.
    4. Office Hours.  Patricia explained that people have visited the office several times when we’ve needed to adjust office hours due to meetings and events – which means the office is closed (due to adhering to the budget of hours).  It was suggested to include contingency hours (again) in the FY21 budget so the office could continue to be open during business hours.  Contingency hours have been included in the budget proposal the last few years, but was denied.
  5. Staff.  No update.
  6. Programs/Project Proposals.
    1. Program Breakdown report.  Quarterly report will be available at next month’s meeting.
    2. Town Hall reservations – Jan thru June 2020.  Reviewed.
    3. Sandisfield Recreation Committee.  Discussed some possible events to collaborate with Sandisfield Rec Comm – bus trips, kid paint & sip & the obstacle challenge.  Patricia will contact Sandisfield Rec and share this info.
    4. Basket Weaving Workshop.  Open for registration, we have eight participants so far – ten is max for workshop.
    5. Bus Trip.  Discussed.  Patricia will inquire about getting updated quotes for Howe Caverns for June 2020 from the two agencies.  The trip will include the cavern tour and two addition activities.
    6. Gingerbread House Event.  Patricia explained that she contacted Larry with the Technology Committee about Rec’s digital camera & portable printer – that we are in need of replacements due to the camera not working the printer sometimes working and being extremely slow – portable printer is used specifically at Rec events so print time is important.  Larry mentioned that there’s a printer up at the Town Hall that Rec might be able to use – he will look into this possibility.  He also suggested the idea of using smartphones for photos instead of a digital camera.  This was discussed at length and Rec Comm did not feel comfortable using our own smartphones at Rec event/activities and having children’s photos on our phones.  Patricia will contact Larry and send some of examples of what equipment might work best (similar to what we were using).  Rec is requesting a digital camera to use that would work to print at Rec events.
    7. Otis Ridge.  Ordered, Patricia will be working on the vouchers.
    8. Paint & Sip.  Has been adjusted to minimum age 16.  Rec Comm discussed number of participants for this program and have limited it to 30 participants.  Coffee, tea, water & cookies will be availableThis is a non-alcoholic event.
    9. Six Flags.  Consignment tix season has closed.  Patricia will send the remaining tix along with the payment – less than ten tix were purchased through the Rec Center this season.
    10. Ski Butternut – tubing.  Ordered a batch (24) for this coming season, we have three unused from last season that they will re-issue for us to use for the 2019/2020 season.
    11. Ski Helmet Days.  Scheduled for 1/11/20 & 2/22/20, both Saturdays, 10AM-2PM.  Inventory will be ordered soon.
    12. Town Beach.
  1. Sand – replenish.
  2. Play ship.
  • Activity reported.
    1. Yoga/Ayurveda Study sessions.  There were only two registrants, cancelled.  Discussed the possibility of having a workshop in the spring.
  1. Memos.
  2. Old Business.
  3. New Business.  Patricia explained that we advertised an upcoming WSI course at Berkshire South in our monthly schedule with the hopes of getting an interested swim instructor applicant for the 2020 swim season.  Another idea was to collaborate with Berkshire South with swim lessons – either have them run their program at our Town Beach with their staff or have lessons at their facility with Rec paying a portion.  Patricia will put together some comparable of swim lessons in the area to put together a proposal to Berkshire South.
  4. Adjourn.



Meeting adjourned at: 8:17PM.

Respectfully submitted by: Patricia Richard.

Submitted to Town Clerk.