Board Meeting Minutes, July 10, 2018, Room 3, Odell Weeks, 6:00PM
In attendance were Jim Kabel, Nancy Vermilye, Joyce Noland, Mike Beckner, Chuck Wright, Chuck Buchanan, Linda Blake, Faith Loeb, Mo Garcia, Ron Nelson Barb Dellamore, Dick Diemar and Nancy Racki.
- Mike Beckner introduced two of our newly approved USAPA Pickleball Ambassadors: Chuck Buchanan, Local Ambassador and Mo Garcia, District Ambassador.
Kim Coleman/Rasheka Gaines
- Invited to speak and presented by Jim Kabel at this meeting were Kim Cole and Resheka Gaines, both with the City of Aiken Recreation Department. The purpose for their attendance was to address various issues of interest to the pickleball community. They showed the breakdown of time used at Odell Weeks for pickleball and other activities offered at the facility. They distributed a chart to explain the use of facility usage and answer questions posed by the leadership committee.
- Resheka Gaines stated that this was an “Open Door Policy” to express concerns. She went on to explain that requests for the use of Gym 2 goes beyond pickleball e.g. mall walkers, volleyball, Red Cross Blood Drives and Aiken High students, some of which have been refused due to lack of available gym time. She pointed out that Generations Park will be opening soon and that it is a possibility for additional recreational space. Another gym building may potentially solve the space issue but it is highly unlikely that a gym building would be built.
- Mo Garcia suggested forming a partnership with another gym space in the area but it seemed like an idea not likely to happen.
- Other suggestions were:
- Toddler Time could be utilized in a smaller space rather than one half of Gym 2 since there are so few children using the gym.
- Place an awning over the outdoor courts to thwart the hot sun during the summer months.
- Have a separate forum for concerns and/or suggestions regarding gym usage.
- Kim Coleman stated that maintaining the present facilities is the focus and did point out that the numbers for pickleball far outnumber all other activities.
- Status of AC Replacement was addressed. At present, August 2, 2018 is the projected completion date for the replacement of the air conditioning units. Three units have already been installed and three more are scheduled for delivery. To date, the installation is 75% complete at Odell Weeks.
- The New Fee Structure was introduced. It is to be noted that this is the first increase since pickleball was begun at the facility. Mike Beckner stated that the fees are on par with other cities that offer pickleball for recreational play. Room/Gym Rental fees have increased substantially. These increases are intended to produce increased revenue for the recreation department.
- Mo Garcia presented an Aiken Tournament update and brought up the issue that the number of 3.0 players signed up to play in our tournament has dropped in comparison to previous tournaments. He would like to see that number increase and he asked if 3.0 reps could approach players and kindly encourage them to register. The tournament directors (Lisa Miner and Sally Fuller) or Mo will prepare an e-blast to encourage players to enter our tournament. He presented the committee with this information prepared by the tournament directors:
Palmetto Doubles Invitational Pickleball Tournament
September 7 to 9, 2018
Odell Weeks Recreation Center
Handout for the leadership meeting, July 10th, 2018
Comparison between 2017 and 2018 Tournament
Number of Aiken players registered
Number of 3.0 players registered
Number of 3.0 Aiken players
The number of Aiken players registered so far is only 51% of the total last year.
The number of 3.0 players is much lower than last year and accounts for almost all the shortfall.
The number of Aiken 3.0 players is dramatically lower.
It is hard to get players to come from other areas if our local players are not supporting the
We would like more Aiken 3.0 players to sign up to encourage the outsiders also.
It has been suggested that they may be some anti-tournament sentiment among some of the
3.0 players in Aiken. The tournament directors would appreciate your support to put forward a
More positive feeling.
We will be sending out another email blast to ask people to register soon. We would like a
volunteer from each rating group, 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0, to agree to be the contact person if anyone
has questions about participating in the tournament. That person should be someone who has
played in the tournament in previous year(s). Perhaps the player reps would be good advocates
or would know someone who could be.
Soon after the call for registrations, we will also be sending out a request for volunteers. We will
be using SignUp genius to manage this process. Volunteer positions include, Referees, Court
Monitors, Registration Desk, Tournament Desk, Lunch Room, and other…
The next step will be meetings of volunteers to explain the talks etc.
- To date, there is approximately 160 players registered for our tournament. Numbers in the area of 180-190 would be good. We have had as many as 204 in the past.
- Nancy Vermilye suggested a meeting with Lisa Miner and 3.0 players for the purpose of encouraging them to register. Chuck Buchanan could also be present to use his people skills as a confidence builder for players apprehensive to register.
- With our tournament just around the corner, Mo suggested player practice prior to the tournament. Chuck Buchanan also suggested that players who plan on refereeing for the tournament attend refereeing sessions to go over the rules.
- Jim Kabel thought it would be a good idea to promote Aiken’s Makin for out of town players and spouses as a source for something to do during that same weekend.
- Mo stated that the balls to be used in the tournament are the Yellow, Onyx Fuse Balls that are USAPA Approved.
- Our tournament provides revenue to the City of Aiken in the area of $100,000.
2018-2019 Leadership Team – new team in place September 1.
- The term of the current leadership team will be complete at the end of August and a new leadership team will take over. Jim Kabel will be stepping down from his position but Nancy Vermilye will continue into the oncoming year to provide continuity.
- A search is on to find a replacement for Jim and a few other leadership members who will not continue for 2018/2019.
- Nancy Vermilye also added that when there are two co-leaders, one should stay on and provide continuity for the coming year. For this coming year, it is imperative that the replacement have good computer skills, temperament and is willing to commit to the time involved.
- Should a replacement for Jim Kabel not be immediately found, Nancy Vermilye also suggested that we reach out to our player reps to canvas anyone who might be interested and would be a good fit as a leader.
- Jim Kabel has agreed to stay on during our tournament for continuity should his replacement not be chosen by then.
- Jim provided a draft of job responsibilities for the various leadership positions to further refined by current members. These responsibilities will possibly be posted on our website.
ACTS Thank You Acknowledgement
- ACTS sent the Pickledillys a thank you note for the food that was collected and donated during April’s National Pickleball Month event held at Odell Weeks.
- Mike Beckner spoke with Karen Perry at ACTS and she wondered if any of our Pickledillys members would be willing to donate their time at least one Thursday a month to pick up food donated by Sam’s Club and take it back to ACTS for distribution. Sam’s Club has canned goods and dry goods ready for pickup at 8:00AM. ACTS can provide their own vehicle to obtain the food but a driver may also use their own vehicle.
- Joyce Noland suggested that player reps ask their players if they would be willing to be driver volunteers to pick up the food.
June Social Wrap-up
- No social is planned at this time until fall.
- It was noted that the June social which highlighted the Ambassadorship retirements of Loretta and Mike Beckner was a wonderful and heavily attended evening.
What is an Odell Weeks “Member”? Critical for Sign-up Genius
- The subject of who should be able to use Sign-up Genius to reserve a court in Gym 2 was brought up. Who should be able to reserve? One who pays to play on a daily basis (non-member at Odell Weeks) or one who has a paid pickleball membership (member at Odell Weeks)? Some other definition?
- No real conclusion or decision was made in reference to use of Sign-up Genius but it was suggested that this topic be continued at the August leadership meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:45PM. The next leadership meeting will be held on Tuesday, August 7, 2018 at 6:00PM at Odell Weeks.