Wicker Park Advisory Council Meeting Minutes

ATTENDED: Clare Rodriguez (Chicago Park District Wicker Park Supervisor), Adam Housley (WPAC President), Scott Venable (WPAC Vice-President), Richard Tilley (WPAC Treasurer), Doug Wood (WPAC Secretary), Denise Browning (Former WPAC President and WPGarden), Susan Fontana (Former WPAC President and WPGarden), Mike Payette (WPAC Security Committee Chairman), Brian Culliton (Skating Rink Interest & Culliton-Quinn Landscape Design), Joe Sawicki (Softball Teams), Leah Root (Wicker Park Committee President), Syreeta Carter (Intern at Chicago Park District from DePaul University)

  1. Secretary (Doug Wood) – February Minutes were read and approved as submitted. It was noted that during March Mike Payette would work to obtain answers to the missing information from the February Security Meeting.  The minutes will be re-read in March.
  2. Budget Report given by Richard Tilley, he noted that his computer was down, but, next month he could give a complete report.
  3. Park District Report Clare Rodriguez, Park Supervisor
    • Clare said she was working with the Chamber on the Partnership of the Farmer’s Market Permits that they had submitted.
    • Clare discussed her work on creating a viable partnership with Cirque Experience.  She hopes all goes well and that the partnership can begin with the summer camp.
    • She noted that many of the work orders have been completed.
    • All the classes are going well and are well attended.
    • She stated that all staff positions should be filled soon – 2 physical instructor positions.
    • Our Part-time attendant – Nancy – was moved from our park and replaced.
  4. PAC  Meeting – Doug Wood – The Council discussed the  2015 Park Advisory Council Conference… PACs are GOLD!

    It is a free event that you must register for to attend.  It is presented by the Chicago Park District and the Chicago Parks Foundation in collaboration with Friends of the Parks and will be held on Saturday, March 28, 2015, 8:30am- 1:30pm, Truman College, 1145 W. Wilson Ave. Larry McKeon Administrative Building FREE Parking.  All were encouraged to register.

    The WPAC was nominated for the 1st Annual Park Advisory Council of the Year Award.  All nominees were required to fill out a set of forms. One of the forms listed questions about their advisory council’s goals and activities during their tenure in the park. In order to be eligible for the award, all forms must be submitted. The council discussed a draft of this completed document and submitted corrections to Doug Wood. He was then to submit the document to Parks Foundation, the coordinator of the award.  The Advisory Council that wins the award receives $500 for its activities.  In addition, a free movie will be raffled off at the conference for the parks that are in attendance.  Doug and Clare will give a presentation how to develop good communications between the park staff, the advisory council and the community by engaging all three groups to work together to create a park that meets the needs of its patrons. They will give this one hour panel two times in the morning session with Maria Stone and a representative from Jackson Park Advisory Council.

  5. Committee Reports
    • Dog Park – Fundraiser and What’s Next – Adam Housley reported that the Dog Park Fundraiser was well attended and raised considerable funds for the dog park.  In addition, he discussed the need for upgrades in the park: the fence along Wicker Park Avenue is damaged, new asphalt needs to be installed in one location, trees need to be installed in the Parkway on Schiller adjacent to the Dog Park.  Doug Wood suggested that we request a Project Manager to work with us to address these numerous issues.
    • Softball – Joe Sawicki stated that all was going well with the paperwork and that softball would being the first weekend in May and continue to the end of August.
    • Landscape – Programming, Gardening, Big Mulch Day, Plant Sale – Doug Wood, Denise Browning, Susan Fontana and Richard Tilley discussed the success of the 8 week long Home Landscape Design Workshop.  They said that in March two workshops would be taught at Richard Tilley’s home: Seed Starting Workshop and Tool Sharpening Workshop.  In addition, the group will begin gardening on Saturdays in March.  They stated that the annual Plant Sale would take place on Mother’s Day Weekend – Saturday, Sunday, May 9 and May 10 from 10am -4pm each day.
    • Website – Tim Kolecke was not present
    • Ice Rink Committee Meeting – Doug Wood and Brian Culliton stated that there would be a community meeting to measure interest in an Ice Rink.  It will be held on Tuesday, March 10 at 7-8:30pm.  All are welcome.  The entire mailing list was notified and the DNA.INFO wrote a story about the meeting.  We have received incredible responses showing a huge support for this enhancement to our park.  At the meeting, it will be determined if there are enough people to work on this project.
    • Events – Updates – March April – Fundraising Focus – Doug Wood stated that all partnerships, permits, and site plans will be submitted the first week of March for Big Mulch Day, Plant Sale, East Room Usage on Saturday as Gardening Backroom prep, Classical Music (Chorus and String Quartet) and Theatre Series, Wicker Mic, Yoga, Puppet Shows, Boo-Palooza, Fountain Decorating Social, Landscape Design Lecture Series, Home Landscape Design Workshop.  The Chamber has submitted all paper work required for the Farmer’s Market.  He distributed the schedule of dates and events.