Chesterton Tribune

'Bud's Buddies' to raise funds to boost Porter parks

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Bud Tilden loved Town of Porter parks; so much so he left $5,000 to them for beautification in honor of his parents, Margaret and William G. Tilden, in his will when he died Feb. 26.

To honor the former Park Board member, the current board agreed Tuesday to organize Bud’s Buddies, a group to help fundraise for and support the Park Department similar to the role the Friends of the Library fills for Westchester Public Library.

The Park Board’s specific motion was to allow Bud’s Buddies to be formed with the appropriate paperwork filed and non-profit tax status secured. The approximately 25 persons in the audience Tuesday applauded following the unanimous vote.

Park Board member Becky Maranto told them, “I felt the energy, the excitement in the room, your passion. It takes all of us in the community to move forward. I say thank you for coming.”

Hawthorne disc golf OK’d

The Park Board unanimously allowed Joel Pisowicz to proceed with fundraising to raise 100 percent of the money needed to bring an initial nine-hole Frisbee (disc) golf course to Hawthorne Park.

At the May 17 meeting a layout will be discussed, but the course generally will be located east of the gazebo between Rankin and Franklin streets.

Pisowicz said disc golf uses almost all of the same rules as traditional golf except a disc is thrown into a standing metal basket. The player completing the course with the fewest number of shots wins. Contestants bring their own discs to play and course maintenance is minimal, he added.

Pisowicz said the individual tee baskets are mounted on a pipe that slides into an anchor pipe concreted into the ground. For events like the Chesterton Art Fair or other uses on the east side of Hawthorne, the baskets can be taken out of the anchor pipes and temporarily stored.

A league is active in the area and tournaments could draw anywhere from 50 to 150 players, said speakers. Pisowicz said he wants to encourage those who use the Hawthorne course to visit Porter businesses.

“I’m absolutely in favor of it,” said Park Board member Jessie Campaniello of the proposal. Porter resident and Public Works superintendent Brenda Brueckheimer said from the audience, “It’s a great thing for the town. It’s a great sport.” She offered her assistance on the project.

July 4 festival coming?

Brueckheimer said it would be a great opportunity for the disc golf course to be ready and open for the July 4 Duneland community festival tentatively planned for that weekend at Hawthorne.

Park Board member Patty Raffin said they’ve reserved July 3 and 4 for the tri-town celebration, whatever form it takes, and the entire weekend will be blocked for the festival in 2012.

Machelle Blount of the Duneland Business Initiative Group told the Park Board as for this year, “ It’s such a tight, tight schedule, if people can jump in and help out I think we could swing this. Otherwise, we’ll have to wait until next year.”

DBIG sponsors the Wizard of Oz Festival and Bark in the Park in Chesterton.

After the meeting Blount said, “We are looking for assistance from other groups” for the July 4 festival. A meeting will take place next week to discuss the planning needed. Overall, she described the likelihood of having a festival as favorable.

A community fireworks show at the Indiana Dunes State Park will take place July 1 to kick off the holiday events. Tuesday, Gary Cutter approached the Park Board about also having a road race that weekend that begins and ends in Hawthorne; he was asked to submit a firm proposal.

Pet Pantry trial storage

Approved 3-0 with Park Board member Rondi Wightman absent was a trial period during which Best Buddies Pet Food Pantry would be allowed to store its donations in the lower level of the Hawthorne community building. The matter will be discussed again May 17.

Pantry spokesperson Cheryl Plomann said she plans to collect and distribute food to low-income Porter County residents with pets; the first distribution is slated next month. “Without community support this can’t move anywhere.”

Raffin and Plomann said the particulars need to be worked out, and the trial period can be reassessed in June.

Also Tuesday, park superintendent Jim Miller was authorized to seek proposals to upgrade or replace the air conditioning and 22 year-old furnace in the community building. Miller said the AC was undersized when it was put in.

Park administrator Stephanie Miller said the Chesterton McDonald’s sponsored a mobile food bank at Hawthorne that helped out about 180 families. She also thanked Reprographic Arts; the Chesterton Jewel, WiseWay and McDonald’s; Lakeshore Drifters 4H and Jeff Miller for donations that made Saturday’s Easter egg hunt very successful despite the bad weather.

The Park Board approved the Bailly School Daisy Troop’s request to use Hawthorne grounds free of charge June 9 for a ceremony.

Also approved were State Park Little League’s request to allow a third-party vendor to sell concessions during Hawthorne baseball games, and a separate request to use the Porter Cove Park baseball fields for practice pending submission of required insurance, waivers and rosters.


Posted 4/20/2011