Centralia Fireside Guard

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Centralia Parks reconsidering 24-hour access to Recreation Center

Posted on Friday, November 6, 2020 at 6:49 am

Parks Director Erle Bennett uses a new cleaning device to disinfect recreation center equipment.

While striving to cope with county health desires on how to run a recreation center while minimizing the spread of COVID-19, members of the Centralia Park Board are examining how to restore 24-hour access to the center’s members.

Erle Bennett, director of the Centralia Parks Department said attendance is increasing on Sundays. He said he would begin monitoring Sunday attendance and after accumulating a month’s worth of attendance data prior to deciding whether to close the front desk on Sundays and restore availability of the 24-hour access door to members.

In other recreation center business members voted unanimously to add this addendum to the 24-hour door policy: “

“Only the annual member who was issued the Key Card may use it. This Key Card may not be loaned for used by anyone else. This Key Card holder may NOT bring in any other non-members. A violation of these provisions shall result in immediate termination of the Key Card, and a $20 fine per each non-member let in. Once the fine is paid, the 24-hour access will be reinstated. If a second offense occurs, the Key Card will be permanently deactivated.”

Bennett said the center has 2,047 members, compared to 2,845 last year.

Those members are liable to see more new faces around the center for the next month or two.

Benne said little league basketball practices will start in November, though fewer of the surrounding schools will be participating “due to the strict guidelines of COVID-19. Currently, he said, 110 children have signed up for the league. It is open to children in the third through sixth grades and has both boys and girl’s teams.

Regarding the city parks, according to the draft minutes, Bennett said several budgeted park projects had been sidelined due to the pandemic. One however is still on the calendar.

He said in November park staff would begin renovating the Bicentennial Park concession stand. Renovations will include, Bennett said: The stand will be gutted, enlarged, and painted with Kilz due to the mold. The concession stand will also be rewired, the air conditioner will be moved, and a 3-Basin sink will be installed.

Work at the South Shelter will also be done, he said. The swings will be updated, with the installation of an Americans With Disabilities Act swing and a bay swing. The monkey bars will also be repainted and re-installed.

Other projects, on the spring 2021 calendar, include:

For the complete article see next week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.