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June, 2018

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Cromwell Valley Park Council
Minutes – June 11, 2018
CVPC General Meeting

Download Minutes CVPC June 2018

In Attendance: John Canoles, Rick Childs, Bill Curtis, Kirk Dreier, Kelly Emerson, Tracy Hauser (Talmar), Kristin McFaul, Pat Novak, Kim Shapiro, Mia Walsh.

Absent: Earle Pratt


  1. a. The President, Mia Walsh, called the meeting to order at 7:06 p.m. A quorum was established, considering at least seven board members were present. A few minutes after the call to order, nine members were present. The board acknowledged the revised agenda prepared by Mia.
  2. b. Mia expressed appreciation as follows: (1) To John Canoles and Bill Curtis for their work on the financial review. John turned over the files to Bill for the second part of the review.
  3. (2) To John Canoles for sharing his expertise with Park visitors, particularly ladies of “a certain age.” He has been instrumental in the grant-seeking for the accessibility trail.
  4. (3) From Sharon Childs for many years of help from a long list of volunteers. Mia read her heart-felt expression which is included in her Programs Committee Report (attached).
  5. (4) From Kim for Communications Committee efforts and support of the CampBrain online registration system. These are included in the attached report.
  6. a. May, 2018 CVPC Meeting Minutes – Kim Shapiro asked if all had received the minutes and if there were any issues. No changes were requested, and the minutes were accepted.
  7. c. Regrets and appreciation also go to Sharon Childs, Kelly Emerson and Earle Pratt who are all resigning from the board. (1) Kelly and Earle will be leaving the area at the end of August to spend a year in Spain along with their sons. Mia presented them with of basket of Spanish wine enclosed in thermal sleeves patterned after the MD flag.
  8. (2) Sharon retires after 21 years serving on the boards of the organizations that have served the Park through the years, FCVP and CVPC. She has served for many years on committees that support special programs and festivals at the park. She will be greatly missed. Mia presented gifts to Rick to take to Sharon.
  9. d. Updates: (1) Website – Mia has been working on content and organization for the new Park website. She said that there are likely to be over 140 pages for the new site. She passed around screenshots for board members to see. Her goal is to finish the work on the site by sometime late in the summer.
  10. (2) Summer camp online registration – Only a handful of slots remain open. A few cancelations have occurred allowing waitlist people to take their places. These changes have to be managed manually, and Mia has done this. Camp T-shirts are designed and will be printed in two colors, a color for campers and a different color for camp staff.
  11. (3) Smithsonian’s Water/Ways exhibition – We have been accepted as part of this traveling exhibit scheduled for next year. We will provide the site and may also be involved in the presentation through delivery of a lecture.

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  1. b. Elections – Kelly presented the report of vacant positions that need to be filled.
  2. c. Motion from Director Bill Curtis (attached): Kirk Dreier – Motion to set up a store through was approved unanimously. – See attached motion description.
  3. d. Annual Report – Mia stated that the Annual Report is finally done. Delays were caused by the need to have completed financial statements. Mia asked how we should distribute this document. Pat said that, during her stint as President, she sent it only to the administration at the Dept. of Rec and Parks, Barry and Chris. We generally agreed that it should be shared with our membership. Rick feels that the Board of Rec and Parks should also get it as they have an active role in our certification. Kelly and Mia talked about the need for our donors to get it, with a thought that bigger donors should receive this along with a short note acknowledging their generous donation. This may be offered in print. For more general distribution, email of a link would be appropriate.
  4. a. For Board training, Bill suggested MD Non-Profit trainers might be invited.
  5. b. For sharing with our community, Pat suggested some of the possible NOWN speakers. Rick suggested that our hawk guy, Jim Meyers, would be a good presenter, especially considering the migration in the fall. Kim recalled that Jim has done this in the past and it was very interesting. Mia asked if it would be too long to have a presentation such as this followed by a business meeting. There were some comments that the speakers would likely not need a full hour.
  6. a. Financial Items – Mia, in Earle’s absence
  7. (1) Kristin McFaul has agreed to serve on the board as Treasurer considering Earle’s resignation.
  8. (2) Mia was contacted by Jenny Trust a frequent park visitor who wishes to serve as a Director on our Board. She has provided a document of her experience, showing that she has served over the past nine years in various director positions at several non-profits: MPT, Baltimore Child Abuse Center, University of MD (Annual Giving) and Planned Parenthood.
  9. (3) There were no nominations from the floor, and both Kristin’s and Jenny’s new roles were approved unanimously after the slate was presented and the election took place.
  10. (4) We still have three board positions to fill: 1 director and 2 standing committee chairs. In the interest of finding interested individuals, Mia and Kim reached out to our community through FB and email. Mia reported that she heard from nine people who all seem very interested in playing a part and have relevant backgrounds for the board work. Mia asked how we might want to introduce ourselves and this work as well as learn about those interested. Rick suggested that we host a social event to get these folks together with us. This idea was generally accepted as a good idea. Plans need to be made.
  11. (1) Park visitors have expressed interest in obtaining items that represent our Park, such as caps, T-shirts, and mugs. has an online program that allows for selling items without the purchase of inventory, through strictly online ordering, with fulfilment handled by adds to its own set prices whatever amount we would like to receive per item as profit. makes only items that are ordered. Bill expects that this will not bring in much revenue but will help our community promote our Park by wearing our logo and designs.
  12. (2) Mia suggested that we might want to buy examples of our items in order to display them.
  13. (3) Rick suggested that we control what designs we use on the items. Bill has been working with Tracy Hauser to develop some designs. He shared her design of a patch or print celebrating the Lime Kiln accomplishments.
  14. (4) John suggested that our website should link directly to our store.

2. TRAINING IDEAS – Mia asked the board for ideas for training during our meetings beginning in the fall.

3. MANAGEMENT (1) Mike Weber has helped us by completing out Personal Property return. He has also agreed to complete our tax forms for 2017. We are currently on an extension.

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  1. b. Security at the Park – In April a few break-ins were reported, primarily involving cars. Mia asked if we should be installing security cameras. Rick and Kirk separately expressed that this method may not be particularly useful at this point due to low level of police interest and low levels of instances. Should we revisit this in the future, Kristin McFaul uses this equipment for her business and is knowledgeable about their function.
  2. c. Park Staff Report – prepared by Kirk – see report included in meeting documents. Here is a brief summary:
  3. d. Leaseholder’s Report – Tracy for Talmar.
  4. e. Standing Committee reports.

(2) CVPC financial review – John has completed his part of the planned review and sent a series of comments. He has transferred the financial files to Bill for further review. The resulting report will go to the Dept. of Rec and Parks.

(3) There was no Treasurer’s Report. The Treasurer needs to provide Kirk and Mia information on how much money remains in Kirk’s exhibit budget. (Reference the Staff Report.)

(1) Kirk has been involved in the training of seasonal staff for the nature parks. This applies to 17 or 18 individuals that serve the parks, especially in the summer. The training includes visits to all of the properties. These folks often pick up permanent positions as these come available.

(2) School session field trips are complete and brought over one thousand children to the Park this spring.

(3) Kirk is arranging for an exhibit of copperheads. As we are not allowed to have a live poisonous snake, he is working on models cast of dead copperheads.

(4) We have three baby native turkeys hatched from eggs procured by Kirk. Mr. Gobbles, a non-native will be given a new home outside of the Park.

(5) A work order is in to repair the entry gate at Willow Grove.

(6) Kirk has obtained new permits for animal operations. We can no longer take Pouchy off premises or out of its cage for education programs.

      1. (7) Kirk is interested in placing more “you are here” signs on the trails, and he is looking for input on placement. These are likely to cost up to $1600. In addition, there is interest in doing more exhibits to explain the hydrology at the Park, particularly the Marble Spring. (a) John suggested that an exhibit might be considered for explaining “storm water runoff”, as the Park along the Minebank area shows those effects. Rick mentioned that a large section of trail was taken out by a recent storm.
      2. (b) Mia asked if the SHA grant from 5 years ago might be used for these signs and exhibits. The concerns were in the amount of documentation and process steps that are required for its use.
      3. (1) Launching “Fresh Fridays” – surplus from CSA and partnering with a farmer in Bel Air selling grass-fed beef. It is a more efficient way to open sales to the community.
      4. (2) Talmar wants to promote Fresh Fridays at the entrance and asked about posting a banner. As such postings are normally for once-a-year events, we have not considered long-term banner postings before. General consensus was that it would be acceptable until a better option is decided. Mia suggested considering a metal sign like what Oregon Ridge has posted, as it is more durable. There was considerable discussion of options, including putting signage in the frame at the entrance drive to Talmar, bringing the site more attention for Park visitors.
      5. (1) Buildings and Grounds – Rick – none.
      6. (2) Finance – Rick. Policies and Procedures for Finance need to be updated. He would like to get the Finance Committee together to agree on the types and distribution of reports throughout the year.
      7. (3) Programs – See Sharon’s report included with these minutes.
      8. (4) Communications – Kim. Our Fall Newsletter needs to go out in early August. Articles and supporting photos are needed by July 12th. Some ideas from the meeting: Pat – Smithsonian Water/Ways & CVP;

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Kristin – a fall recipe; Bill – our new online store. Kirk – some cool revelation about nature. (Mia’s update on the website is earlier in these minutes.)

(5) Membership – refer to report by Membership Committee. Current membership stands at 323.

(6) Sherwood (comment by Mia, not a standing committee) – Mia met someone from the County who was visiting Sherwood to assess the need for work on the roof, shutters and interior painting. Good things are coming to the mansion.


Policies & Procedures – Pat handed out revised Section II of procedures and provided for review Section III, which are primarily board roles. At will take input for revisions for Section III. Mia and Kim will provide drafts on record of President’s P&P.

Fall Harvest Festival – the planning committee for the event is in search of vendors/exhibitors of handmade items. Mia will post a request on Facebook.

Mia asked about progress on the plan for the Lime Kiln celebration. Pat read the results of the discussion that were included in the May minutes, as no further work was done after that breakout session.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:48 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Kim Shapiro, Secretary, 6/12/18.

Next Meeting:

Sherwood House @ 7 pm

August 13, 2018 Executive Board Meeting Page 5

Executive Board Listing



Email Address



Mia Walsh

[email protected]

April 2017 – March 2019

Vice President

Pat Novak

[email protected]

April 2018 – March 2020


Earle Pratt

[email protected]

April 2017 – March 2019


Kim Shapiro

[email protected]

April 2018 – March 2020

DIRECTORS – Members at Large

Kelly Emerson

[email protected]

April 2018 – March 2020

Bill Curtis

[email protected]

April 2018 – March 2020

Kristin McFaul

[email protected]

April 2017 – March 2019

John Canoles

[email protected]

April 2017 – March 2019



Rick Childs

[email protected]

Current membership year – voted annually *

Building and Grounds

Rick Childs

[email protected]



Sharon Childs

[email protected]



Kim Shapiro

[email protected]






Tracy Hauser

[email protected]