Chesterton Tribune

 

 

Parks partner with Friends of Porter County Library for story boards

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By LILY REX

Porter County Library Director Jesse Butz was at last night’s Porter County Park Board meeting to thank the Board for its partnership in making a story board trail at Sunset Hill Farm County Park.

Butz said the Porter County Friends of the Library contributed $8,000 towards sturdy story board signs for Sunset Hill, and Parks staff will be installing them. There will be a total of 20 signs between 100 and 200 feet apart. The signs won’t rust or rot because they’re made of coated metal.

To make the signs, Butz said stories from PCL children’s books are mounted on banners and those banners are placed on museum-quality boards that go in the signs. “Between each sign there will be some sort of activity, like ‘jump on one foot from here to here’ or ‘be on the lookout for this piece of nature,’” Butz added.

Butz said his staff will be changing out the books every few weeks, and PCL Librarians will visit the Park to do pop-up story times in an effort to get kids who love the Parks interested in the Library, and vice-versa.

The story board trail will begin at the parking lot, weave through the playground area along the road to the pond, and continue along Redbud Trail, leading back to the parking lot.

Parks Superintendent Walter Lenckos said he was excited to bring back story boards with the new partnership. The Parks Department had a story board trail before in collaboration with Parents As Teachers. “The signs weren’t used because they couldn’t be continually updated. It used to be very popular,” Lenckos said.

Additional Appropriation

Lenckos asked for the Board’s approval to seek an additional appropriation from the County Council to make the last payments related to the Horton Children’s Center building project. The $65,856 is in the Parks budget, but needs to be allocated for the payments. Lenckos also wanted to transfer $2,075 out of worker’s compensation to pay for a copier fee.

Before the Board voted, Board members Drew Armstrong and Annetta Jones and Vice-president Rich Hudson made a point to thank the Parks Foundation for all its work fundraising for the new grain-bin-shaped Children’s Center.

There was no discussion before the vote. Jones, Armstrong, and Hudson voted yes. The motion failed 3-1 when Board member Bryan Waisanen voted no.

Waisanen, who was the Parks Foundation’s President until June, is in his third month on the Board. He was appointed by the County Commissioners’ in July after the Board of Commissioners had previously left its appointment to the Park Board vacant for over a year.

Only four members of the Board were present last night since Board President Craig Kenworthy was absent, and one of Judge Mary Harper’s appointments to the six member-Board is vacant. Four of the six members must agree to approve any actions, no matter how many are present.

Waisanen said after the meeting that he “couldn’t in full faith vote in the affirmative on the motion” because he was uncomfortable with one of the items contained in the request and had further questions about it.

A ribbon cutting for the Horton Children’s Center, which was funded entirely without taxpayer money, is planned for Wednesday, Oct. 23 from 5 to 7 p.m.

NIHPA Show and IGRS

In other business, the Northwest Indiana Historical Power Association is gearing up for its busy month, according to President Nick Misch. The annual NIHPA Steam and Power show is Sept. 27 to Sept. 29. On Sept. 28 at 7 p.m. there will be a dinner with pulled pork sandwiches, baked beans, and cole slaw. Tickets for the dinner are $8. The show will mark 30 years of the group being based at Sunset Hill, according to Misch.

Hudson commented that the Illiana Garden Railway Society (IGRS) has made great strides in its area of Sunset Hill, where it has a model railroad track and storage shed. “I was amazed at how nice it looked,” Hudson said.

 

 

Posted 9/6/2019

 

 
 
 

 

 

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