Cranbury Recreation Commission

Minutes:  10/28/04


Attendance: Gene Buckley, Mario Fiorentini, Edith Dlugokencki, Beth Veghte, Ken Jacobs, Kerry A. Philip.


Also in attendance:  Vinny Kotowski and Steven Schwartz, Cranbury Soccer Club


The meeting was called to order at 8:00 p.m.


Review Minutes:

4/22/04 – The minutes from 4/22/04 were approved by a motion made by Mario Fiorentini and seconded by Art Wasson.  The vote was 3-0 in favor.  Motion carried.

8/26/04 – The minutes from 8/26/04 were approved by a motion made by Art Wasson and seconded by Gene Buckley.  The vote was 3-0 in favor.   Motion Carried. 


Old Business

1.      Summer Camp 2004:  No report was provided.

2.      Skate Park:  Gene stated that a meeting is scheduled for next week, the skate park manufacturers will be coming in to speak with the kids on Wednesday, November 3rd at 7:00 p.m. 

3.      Needs Assessment:  Beth stated that the needs assessment form went out in the September newsletter and approximately 50 responses were received.  Mario stated that there is no reference for baseball facilities in the assessment form.  Beth stated that this was an oversight.  Mario stated that it is known that our facilities are lacking and asked for an addendum to the assessment to include baseball.  Beth asked Mario to write something up and it will be in the next newsletter as a special addendum.

4.      Bike Path:  No report was provided.

5.      Cranbury Day:  Beth stated that Cranbury Day was a success.

6.      Millstone Field:  No report was provided.

7.      Babe Ruth Field:   Beth presented a drawing from Brown and Keener for the Babe Ruth field.  The Engineer’s are coming in on November 22nd with the design elements.   She stated that the plan calls for a pedestrian path around the park, the material of the pathway is being considered at this time.  The cost of the land is $750,000.  Mario recommended that the bathrooms be connected to the shed building instead of providing porta johns on the property.  Beth advised that we are hoping to begin construction in the spring.  Beth stated that the pavilion may not be constructed, this will be determined after the park is constructed.  The Board recommended that the line item for the pavilion remain in the capital budget.

8.      Donation to Methodist Church:  Ken stated that this has been taken care of.

9.      Senior Fellowship Exercise Class:  No report was provided. 

10. New Park Ordinances:  Beth stated that the Council approved a resolution making the Parks Board a Commission.  She handed out copies of the proposed Park rules for board review.  The rules will be posted on signs and the signs will be placed within all the parks.  The Police have advised that they don’t want to enforce anything until the ordinance is approved.  She stated that flyers must be prepared and provided to the Police Department after the ordinance passes so they know which rules are enforceable.  Beth advised that the first reading is scheduled for November 8th, the second reading is November 22nd.  Beth told Ken to consider charging a fee for using the pavilion for trash removal.


New Business

1.      Soccer:  Vinny Kotowski, Cranbury Soccer Club, stated that they have eight active teams at this time with a new team forming for girls ages 10-11 and a new team for boys in the spring.  There are approximately 112 children active in the soccer club and 65-70% are Cranbury residents.  He stated that every team has Cranbury residents except one, that team is from Monroe and Vinny stated that many girls from Cranbury play for travel teams in East Windsor because there was no placement for them here.  Field improvements being considered are lighting, irrigation and a kickboard.  Modest dues are collected from each team and this money will be put towards those purchases.  $7500 to $8000 is available at this time, they would like to purchase a kickboard with the approx. dimensions of 8’h x 27’w.  Beth asked if they have considered purchasing a kick back net.  Vinny stated that they are concerned about damage to the net and its durability.  Vinny stated that they have limited practice field space and they would like to use Heritage Park.  Beth stated that the Parks Commission is not in favor of this space being used permanently but it is open space and can be used temporarily.  Beth advised that the school board are looking to renovate one of their fields but they have expressed to Council that they have no need for temporary fields, even though the school board president previously expressed that temporary fields were needed.  Beth asked Vinny if his members had sent in their questionnaire, if not a request for a kickboard should be noted.  She stated that the questionnaire was prepared so the community can provide feedback on what is needed in town.  Beth asked Vinny to bring the questionnaire to the parents attention and request that they send it in.  Beth stated that we could discuss the kickboard or net as part of the capital budget. Vinny stated that as a non profit group and the money in their budget must be spent before it is lost, they can include the allocation of this money towards needed irrigation.  Beth said that the Township must determine the location of the water line for irrigating the soccer fields and Babe Ruth field.  City water is being considered instead of well water for the fields and the drinking fountains.     


Steve Schwartz then spoke about the Millstone Park, he stated that the combination lock for the goals is working well, only those with the combination can unlock the goals.  It is minimizing wear and tear on the field, in the spring they will relocate the goals off the center of the baseball field.  Vinny stated that they need to secure the goals because a child was injured after a goal frame fell on him.  Beth stated that park ordinance rules and new signage is being prepared advising that permits are needed to use fields.  Vinny advised that the game fields must be groomed, Beth advised that he should speak with Tom Witt.


Beth stated that she likes the fact that all but one of the teams have Cranbury residents, but because the fields are premium she is against anyone outside of Cranbury using the fields.  Vinny stated that the Monroe team does not use our fields for practice nor our indoor facilities and they affiliate with us as well as other towns.  They play five games in the fall and five in the spring.  Their team coach is the Vice President of the Cranbury Soccer Club and they have hosted tournaments and other activities in Monroe.   Beth concluded by stating that the soccer teams can use any open space for practice fields.  Beth then advised that the barrier in the new gym can be used at this time.  If the barrier is needed they should give the custodian prior notice.  Beth also stated that with the barrier up the court in the new gym can be shared between the basketball and soccer teams.  Gene stated that Thursday night may be a good day.  


2.  General Budget and Capital Budget:

Ken distributed copies of the 2005 budget and asked what expenses are considered for the capital budget.  He stated that money was raised for a bus shuttle for the summer camp in anticipation of using the pool at the Cranbury swim club three times per week.  Staff for the summer camp was decreased so money budgeted for CPR and first aid lessons were reduced in addition to the charge for the nurse.  The budget for the summer concert series was increased $1000, Beth recommended a line item for the movies in the park ($750/movie).  She noted that three movies were shown in 2004.  Ken advised that West Windsor used to show movies and then they brought in more activities to make it a larger event and the number of participants increased.  Beth recommended that an ad for the movies should be in the March and June newsletters.  Mario stated that the line item for background checks can be reduced, this is done by the baseball, football and basketball leagues.  Gene questioned why $15,000 is being set aside for a rebound wall and recommended that the kids be encouraged to use the wall by the gym.  Beth recommended that the budget for the skate park be raised to $150,000.  She advised that the Haggerty tract or the Fisher property may be considered for the skate park.  Gene stated that since the park may not be constructed for several years we may consider contacting another township (such as Washington Twp.) that has a skate park and who may be willing to accept Cranbury residents since their numbers of participants have decreased.  If this can be arranged, he recommended that we advertise the same.   Rose stated that she is concerned because the Golden Agers and Senior Fellowship have always received the same amount each year and the budget was raised for Senior Fellowship to cover the extra exercise class.  She is concerned that the Golden Agers would be opposed to do this.  Beth stated that the fee for the exercise class ($1000) will be a separate line item. 

3.      Golden Agers:  Edith stated that they took a trip to see a play in November, they also took a trip to Peddlers Village in October and discussed other activities that took place. 

4.      Senior Fellowship:  No report was provided.

5.      Part Time Recreation Director:  Job Description

Ken stated that the job description will be site supervisor, someone on site to handle problems and report back to the office.  Several people have been contacted about this position, he is hoping to get someone in time to cover the basketball team activities.    

6.      New Recreation Software:  Ken stated that he purchased a software program database management system to track financials and registrations.  The Access program was difficult to use and this program is windows based and much easier to use.  It was used to track the basketball registrations and summer camp data.  The total cost was $9200. 

7.      Fall Tennis:  Clinics/Women’s League

Ken stated that the Women’s pick up league is going very well, all five courts are being reserved.  The Kids tennis program should be over, he advised that things went very well (8 participants for 6th-8th graders).

8.      Cranbury Hoops:  High School and Youth

Beth stated that there are 20 participants for this program.  The cost is $20 per child for the whole season. 


Other Business

Ken stated that Fred asked that the playgrounds be audited by a safety inspector.  The inspector reported that there were many problems, including the newest play structure.  One playground has a retention wall which is higher than the grass (Heritage Park), photographs were taken and remedies provided.  Ken stated that he has to identify all the things that must be done and include these in the capital budget.  He advised that these were recommendations by the safety inspector, they are not binding in any way.  Ken recommended that we contact the contractor who installed the play structure and have them do the required repairs.  He stated that two sets of swings should be included in the capital budget.


Since there was no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 10:45 p.m.


The next meeting is scheduled for December 16, 2004. 


Respectfully submitted,




Kerry A. Philip

Recording Secretary