WILMETTE PARK DISTRICT
CENTENNIAL OPERATIONS COMMITTEE MEETING
Date: April 8, 2013
Place: Park District Administration Office
Time: 6:15 p.m.
Attendance: Commissioners: Committee Chair Graham, Benz
Absent: Commissioner Murdock
Staff: Wilson, Bowen, Flynn, Udany
Visitors: Park Board Candidates Abbott and Wolfe
Topics of Discussion:
1) Meeting Called to Order
2) Approval of Minutes:
a) March 11, 2013
3) Communications and Correspondence
4) Recognition of Visitors
5) Managers Reports
6) Old Business
7) New Business
1) Chair Graham called the meeting to order at 6:15 pm.
2) The Committee approved the minutes of March 11, 2013 by General Consent.
3) Under Communications and Correspondence: None
4) Recognition of Visitors: Park Board Candidates Abbott and Wolfe
5) Under Managers Reports, Pool Manager Brian Udany reported staff is preparing for the opening of the pools and the pre-season maintenance tasks have begun. As of April 8 this year, a total of 3,244 total season passes were sold compared to last year at this time when the number totaled 3,299. The season pass sales breakdown for this year is currently 2,470 residents and 764 non-residents which is 65 non-resident passes down from last year. We are a few days ahead of schedule in terms of the number of passes we were able to sell but the weather has not helped to motivate patrons to purchase their early bird passes although they did receive a postcard in the mail and an email will also be sent out within a week to our previous passholders reminding them of the Early Bird discount.
Superintendent Bowen pointed out that we will not be close to last year’s numbers since the weather was much nicer in March and April of 2012. Traditionally when the temperatures are in the 40’s and if people miss the Early Bird discount they tend to not purchase their passes until their first visit to the pool. Director Wilson added that despite the cooler March and April timeframe this year we are not too far off from last year and the main focus now is to get the pools open.
Ice Manager Sean Flynn reported that public skate sessions so far this year are at 2,096 compared to last year’s total of 1,496, an increase of 600 children in March. Overall year-to-date the number of skaters is 6,705 which is 28 down from last year compared to last year’s 6,733. Ice Show rehearsals started April 1 and the shows will be held on April 19 at 7 pm, April 20 at 4:30 pm, and April 21 at 2:30 pm. Ice Show tickets went on sale on April 1 and a total of 1,334 tickets have been sold as of today’s date. Last year during the first week ticket sales totaled 1,542 which is 208 less than last year. Our open hockey sessions have had 226 participants and brought in $2,260. The most popular group has been the parent/child combination with 91 participants and averaging 13 per session. Mites and Squirts had 83 participants and PeeWees and Bantams had 43 participants. The high school age group had just one participant.
Jeff Bowen reported the tennis court time lottery deadline was today and court selection will be held on Saturday, April 20. The last day of Tennis Camp was Friday, May 5, with 378 participants. Summer Basic level registration for juniors and adults begins on May 7 for residents and on May 8 for non-residents. The nets are up at the outdoor courts and those will be cleaned starting in May. In addition, three USTA teams have committed to using our indoor courts as their home location in the evening. This was a new program last year that we began in conjunction with the USTA and it has generated a nice amount of revenue.
6. Old Business: None
7. New Business: Jeff Bowen reported that last fall the Wilmette Hockey Association (WHA) approached staff about looking for some cost savings measures and some reductions in ice cost. However, staff explained to them that we could not forego that amount of revenue but we could possibly do some things to help benefit their bottom line. We told them we could process their registrations for them which would save them approximately $16,000-$17,000 in licensing fees and it wouldn’t increase our costs at all. Director Wilson added that a vast majority of that would be paying for a software license to do online registrations which we already do and it wouldn’t increase our costs at all. Jeff Bowen added there would be a marginal expense for us on the credit card side but our rate is significantly lower than there’s would be.
Staff had brought this up to the WHA a couple of years ago about possibly expanding our hockey program but at the time they didn’t see a need and felt they were doing well on their own. We did have some discussions about possibly taking over some more of the house leagues and clinics for them. The WHA is now looking at how they can restructure their program and will be talking to the WHA Executive Board this week. Everything is still in the discussion phase although we have committed to them that we could process the registrations and save them some money. Director Wilson stated that the WHA is trying to partner with us to create a more comprehensive and better hockey program for the community which would be something that would evolve and grow if we decide to move forward with it. Superintendent Bowen added that the WHA has not yet discussed this with their Executive Board and Director Wilson stated that the WHA was informed we would be brining this topic up in a public meeting.
Director Wilson added that from our point of view there seems to be a change in their thinking about understanding the value of a proper house program and they understand that their primary focus is on their boards and on those participants who travel. They could also maybe partner with us and evolve the program over the next few years.
Superintendent Bowen reported that the ice rink will be turned off on Monday, April 22, for the reconstruction project.
The regular Committee meeting adjourned to Closed Session at 6:30 pm.
The regular Committee meeting reconvened at 7:05 pm.
There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 7:06 pm.
Minutes taken by Jeffrey Bowen.
MINUTES APPROVED ON MAY 13, 2013.