To the Editor:
Too often the efforts of community members who expend a lot of energy and time into creating something good for the town either go unrecognized or unthanked. And, as time passes by, memories fade about who was behind it, yet the project remains. We have fifty years of various community members and groups organizing the White Water Derby. We had a very ambitious, hard working group who put together the Upper Hudson Scenic Railroad and museum fifteen years or so ago. Organized four years ago by Joel Beaudin and Rusty Leigh, we now have the wonderful Blue Grass Festival each August. These folks know the meaning of community service. I think another group of people should also be recognizedthe Ski Bowl Park Committee. I would like to commend all who have sat on the various Ski Bowl Park committees those that were there twenty plus years ago and those that have come aboard sincefor the hours spent in trying to make the park a better place for the residents of Johnsburg.
This past year the park committee prioritized the expressed needs of those residents who participated in a survey to form the foundation of their planning discussions. As a result, ice skating was re-established at the pavilion primarily due to the hard work of Bob Nessle, Lee Keeler, Bob Manning, Jill Broderick and Steve Studnicky. The first ever Winter Extravaganza, organized by Nancy Ness, Kate Hartley and Andi McKee, was celebrated with skating, snow sculptures, and tubing. Early this summer, a volunteer work day was held in order to clean up the beach, create the sand volleyball court, and weed. Committee members and their families, Sterling Goodspeed, Evelyn Greene, and Harry Ross all pitched in. In late June and early July, a group of young people from the Midwest, Youthworks, arrived to paint the beach fence, the ice skating rink panels, the Water District building, the trash barrels, and the inside of the change house. They also cut brush on trails and spread soil for the gardens. Andrea McKee, Silas McKee and Judy Brown spent several days supervising them. Fourth of July activities celebrated the holiday. This fall, volunteer days are planned again to work on trail cutting and picnic site development. Thanks to all the committee members and all the others who have worked with the committee for the hours of service you have given.
One committee person in particular has been consistently behind everything that has been done since last September--Andrea McKee, Chairperson. Without Andis day-in and day-out efforts, there is little chance that all of the above would have happened. She has galvanized a large number of people, old and new residents alike, to care about the park and to lend their talents to various projects. She has been the point person with the town board to get the signal to go ahead. She has spent countless hours dreaming and envisioning what could be done for the park that would make it an inviting place for the residents. She has argued long and hard about the need for the park to offer something to the teen population in town. She has consistently fought to have the park meet the needs of the community, not just the skiing public. As you begin to see changes and new developments happen in Ski Bowl Park, remember that one lady, with the tenacity of a bull-dog and the stamina of the Energizer Bunny, has been behind it all. Thank you, Andi, for all your efforts and for reminding us that it takes a community to create a park.