Welcome to the August 2011 J.P.A.C. Newsletter online.

Jackson Park/JPAC homepage (http://www.hydepark.org/parks/jpac.html).
hydepark.org Parks homepage

TAKE OUR SURVEY! You can find and print it here (and return as therein), take a slightly different version online in our new website, or ask us for earlier paper versions, such as was mailed with the July 2011 Newsletter.

Visit our new official website: http://www.jacksonparkadvisorycouncil.org.

Published by Jackson Park Advisory Council, a recognized advisory body to the Chicago Park District, Chicago Illinois

Editor Gary Ossewaarde, JPAC Secretary. Hosted by hydepark.org, website of Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference (owner, hpkcc@aol.com) by OnShore Communications.

Jackson Park Advisory Council July 11, 2011 Council Meeting Minutes

President McCurry convened the meeting at 7:30 p.m. at the fieldhouse, a quorum present, 14 in attendance. Introductions revealed one new) attendee, one guest presenter, and one who is only able to attend occasionally due to Jackson Park-related sports duties.
Minutes of the June meeting were accepted as presented later in the meeting.

Treasurer’s report. Dwight Powell presented reports and bank statements for May and June. Balance June 30: $5,553.64. Expenditures included $175 for JPAC t-shirts and caps (approved in April) and a bank charge.

Nature report: Jerry Levy reported on work done in Wooded Island and on several tours on the island’s ecology. Members would like to encourage tours they know about that include Osaka Garden to explore more of the Island. Groups are calling to do service projects, Jerry said. Jerry would hold a special workday on the 17th a.m., and the regular Wooded Island workday on the 23rd 2-5 p.m. In August a group from U of C is booked, and proposed was linking with the September 24 UC Service Center Day of Service. Proposed and by consensus agreed to try setting dates/times for tours and for community service hours in the fall and inviting school and maybe other groups to come, thus jump-starting both volunteer and nature trail programming. Target audiences could also be approached through organizations’ online services.

President McCurry reported on success with an information table and distribution of surveys at the 4th on 53rd Parade and Picnic in Hyde Park and the Highlands Fling in South Shore. Next would be at the Jazz Unites Festival at South Shore Cultural Center.

Birds. Pat Durkin said that in addition to the Wooded Island group on Wednesdays and Saturdays, groups come from the North Shore and from Indiana. Woodpeckers are nesting. Fall planting is coming-- agreed was to ask the Department of Natural Resources for a Wooded Island Working Group walk though.

Jazz Unites. Donna Hodges gave the history and cultural heritage of the Jazz Festival held next door at South Shore Cultural Center each first weekend of August. One of many featured artists this year will be Curtis Robinson Trio (guitar). One cannot bring food or water, but there will be plenty of vendors. Noted: there used to be jazz concerts on La Rabida-Promontory Circle and the south portico of the Museum.

Long-time member Robert Nelson, at one time manager of the harbors, described the history of drainage, infrastructure, washrooms, and amenities along Jackson Park’s lakefront and offered to help learn the possibility of restoring to service the Columbian Exposition vintage comfort station near La Rabida and the east end of the golf course-- it was in service the 1990s. He also recalled the restoration of the Harbor Station and the 63rd St. Bathing Pavilion 1988-1999. Persons recalled that a public toilets, sitting areas and active spaces disappeared when the harbors were privatized. They asked the council to look into what could be brought back, especially the restaurant in the harbor station.

The council was also asked to redouble collaboration with the yacht and boating clubs in cleanup and community events, and to contact kayak classes. Proposed for exploration was membership swap with the yacht and boating clubs.

Also asked was looking into what can be done to enforce the low-wake channel rules for fishermen safety. Mr. Nelson reminded that harbor maintenance is paid by the federal government, not harbor fees.

President McCurry reported further great progress by volunteers and CPD cleaning and opening up around LaRabida and Promontory Circle, which was continued with a large number of Jesuit student body presidents from around the country (who offered many ideas!) and would continue with another large group from Northwestern University. These are coordinated by CPD staff (who also cleared and removed a great deal) and Friends of the Parks. Some historic lighting poles were discovered. Members were encouraged to come do a follow up on Saturday the 16th 8 a.m. to noon.
Nature trails. Fran Vandervoort said drafts of self-guided activity and learning tours for various age groups and teacher kits are being vetted with professionals and Park District. Collages of photos are being created. Some of this will require appropriation and fundraising. Moved by Jerry Levy, seconded and approved to appropriate an initial $200 as needed.

Vandervoort said that discretionary expenditures needed for ongoing projects need to be allowable, but with strict guidelines and accounting, as mandated in the bylaws. Jerry Levy moved, Vandervoort seconded, approved that Resolved: Designated persons pursuing JPAC-approved projects may spend, with knowledge of the treasurer, and be reimbursed up to $100 without prior appropriation. Receipts must be shown.

McCurry relayed an inquiry from park staff concerning providing book bags for school for day camp students. In lieu, suggested was investigating pro bono for this or a set of supplies. Moved, seconded, approved to seek such pro bono and that JPAC explore contributing up to $3 per pupil for supplies. Approved.

Sports and Fields/Friends of the Fields. Ram Nair. The committee is working to develop a fair usage schedule to ensure equity among stakeholder users and especially to make sure that neither the community nor the stakeholder soccer and football teams are squeezed out, including by non-permit “leagues.” The area has been fenced off for start of construction.

Dog park planning and work at the prospective site was described.

Jackson Park officers would attend the July 13 Park District Board of Commissioner meetings. All were asked to attend the Park District budget hearings [Area 3 round done, region-level tba.]

The meeting was adjourned c. 9 p.m. Next meeting Monday, August 8, 7:30 p.m. at the fieldhouse. Respectfully submitted, Gary M. Ossewaarde, Secretary


Sad and Glad: An old snag at the Wooded Island (WI) Rose Garden, with nesting woodpeckers, was blown down by high winds. Trees and shrubs from last year on WI that didn’t make it have been replaced by oaks and others. Check the array of wildflowers and birds in the Rose Garden (the fenced part of southern WI).

Louise McCurry gave a report at the July 18 CPD budget hearing for Area 3 South parks. She stressed dangerous concrete stairs at LaRabida/Promontory and need for repairs to a promenade with standing pools breeding mosquitoes, and for some plantings. People there have no bathroom facilities—one that was working a few years ago could be reopened. Nature area signage and id was requested. A roadway to an active tennis area should be repaired. A fountain with a bowl for dogs and hose attachment is needed near a tennis facility. Clarence Darrow bridge deck needs repair and the north bridge to Wooded Island/Osaka garden repaired.

JPAC has learned that some playgrounds failed a safety survey; at least one is visibly in poor shape.

Volunteer workdays: Bobolink Meadow 2nd Saturdays 9-12. For information call parrybell@comcast.net.
La Rabida/Promontory Circle: gen. 3rd Saturdays 8-12. For information call Louise at 773 844-2225.
Wooded Island: 4th Saturdays 2-5. From Darrow bridge so. of MSI. sjlevy@jeromelevylaw.com.

BEACH CLEAN WITH TOURS, ACTIVITIES being planned...contact Toshia at jpacattack@gmail.com.
We will contact those for whom we have email addresses.

Bird Walks: Weds at 7, Sats at 8 from Darrow Bridge. Special CAPS Aug. 3 at 7, 1818 E. 71st St.
Lawn Bowling and croquet at the green se of MSI. Tom Michael for schedule- 708-366-8228.

Committees/ events calendar is in the new website http://www.jacksonparkadvisorycouncil.org.
TAKE OUR SURVEY ON LINE AT THAT NEW WEBSITE Thanks to all who have taken the paper version. Your comments have made redesign possible. You are welcome to retake the revision online.