Park District to acquire property to build Meadows of Spring Brook Park—and other Park District news
From press release
At the May 25 Rockford Park District Board meeting, commissioners approved an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) with the City of Rockford for the acquisition, construction of improvements, and maintenance for future development of Meadows of Spring Brook Park.
With this action, the board enters into an intergovernmental agreement with the City of Rockford and will move ahead with the purchase of 18 acres north of Spring Brook Drive for the amount of $50,000. The approval of this IGA allows for joint development of a storm water management facility and recreational park at the site, which serves the northeast quadrant of the city.
Park District Executive Director Tim Dimke said: “Acquiring this property allows future park development in one of our neighborhood park service gap areas. One of our most important priorities is to provide neighborhood parks within reasonable walking distance from most people’s homes. This partnership with the City of Rockford allows us to eventually develop a park that will meet the neighborhood’s needs.”
In 2008, Park District staff was contacted by Rockford Ald. Carl Wasco (D-4) to discuss an 18.5-acre parcel of property on Springwheat Road for a potential neighborhood park. Staff met with the property owner, Commercial Mortgage & Finance (CMF), and staff from the City of Rockford to determine feasibility of a park at that site. CMF had limited interest in donating land for development of a neighborhood park and had contemplated platting a portion of the property closest to Springwheat Road for residential development.
The City of Rockford expressed interest in jointly acquiring the property with the Park District for regional storm water detention and a park. The city is interested in restoring the creek and riparian area as a part of its project. The city and the Park District would equally share the $100,000 cost for acquisition.
Park District staff intends to apply for an IDNR-OSLAD development grant to help fund future development of the park. Approximately three to five single-family lots have been reserved, and will be declared surplus property. The proceeds from the sale of these lots would be equally split with the city, and the Park District could use this money as the local match for an IDNR-OSLAD development grant.
Park District Board President Jack Armstrong said: “It is important for us to continually seek collaborative partnerships, and this project allows both the City of Rockford and the Rockford Park District to achieve our goals more effectively and efficiently, and improves the quality of life for our citizens.”
Rockford City Council approved the intergovernmental agreement May 17.
Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens receives additional donations
The Rockford Park District Board of Commissioners granted naming opportunity proposals from the following company and family to be permanently named in honor of these donors:
• The Green Roof Garden of the Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens be named in recognition of Aqua-Aerobic Systems, Inc., and its significant pledge of $100,000; and
• The Photo Opportunity Wall of the Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens be named in memory of Elmer Olson and his family’s significant pledge of $50,000.
The Board of Commissioners previously approved a gift recognition plan for Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens that permitted permanent naming opportunities in relation to a specified gift amount with a donor’s name in specified areas of the facility and grounds. The donors above have made such a pledge and/or gift, for which the Rockford Park District and Rockford Park District Foundation are deeply grateful.
Magic Waters receives Ellis & Associates Platinum Award
May 25, the Rockford Park District Board of Commissioners was presented with the Ellis & Associates Platinum Award from Jessica Steinberg, director of Magic Waters and Aquatics, on behalf of the waterpark’s lifeguard team.
In September of 2009, professional lifeguard agency Jeff Ellis & Associates informed the Rockford Park District that the lifeguard team of Magic Waters had achieved a score of “Exceeds” on three separate audits conducted throughout the summer that achieved Platinum Level status. Less then 10 percent of Ellis & Associates clients worldwide achieve this prestigious honor. This is the first Platinum Award the waterpark has received in more than a decade. The lifeguards and management team of Magic Waters were audited in five different categories:
1. Live action mock scenarios
2. Individual silent audits
5. VAT (Vigilance Awareness Test)
The Platinum Award signifies a perfect score on all five categories each time auditors visited the facility. On average, Magic Waters Waterpark conducts 300 water rescues throughout the summer season. Jessica Steinberg, director of Magic Waters and Aquatics, and Zack McIntyre, operations manager, were on hand along with the district’s lifeguard team to present the board with the coveted 2009 Ellis & Associates Platinum Award.
Park District police officer recognized for Police Memorial Week service
At the May 25 Rockford Park District Board meeting, Rockford Park District Police Community Service Officer Lisa Hodges was presented with a plaque recognizing her years of dedication to Northern Illinois Police Memorial Week. The plaque was presented by Jim Falzone, retired Winnebago County deputy and a member of the Northern Illinois Police Memorial Week (NIPMW) Executive Board.
Each year, the NIPMW committee honors a committee member who they believe has contributed above and beyond in time, effort, and talent to coordinate activities in honor of Police Week. The committee is composed of 23 members representing various law enforcement agencies in Winnebago, Boone and Ogle counties.
The week in which May 15 falls is designated as National Police Memorial Week, a time to reflect upon and honor the memory of law enforcement officers who have been slain in the line of duty. NIPMW schedules a variety of events around the stateline area to coincide with National Police Memorial Week, culminating in the multi-jurisdictional police agency displays set up at CherryVale Mall for the weekend of Police Memorial Week. Officer Lisa Hodges tirelessly participates in every scheduled event each year with unrivaled energy and enthusiasm. Officer Hodges works to reverently honor fallen officers as well as reach out to the public who visit the Rockford Park District Police display table at the annual event at the mall.
Print This Article