Lehigh Valley Kayak & Canoe Club
Executive Meeting Minutes – January 15, 2016
Location: Sheldon Linn’s house
Executive Committee attendees:
President – Scott Douglas
Vice President – Linda Martin
Recording Secretary – Lisa Aderhold
Membership Secretary – Dan Rempp
Member(s) at Large –Larry Palmer, Sheldon Linn
Executive Committee members not in attendance: Pat Beltz
Scott Douglas called the Executive Committee meeting to order following a potluck dinner at Sheldon Linn’s house at 8:10pm. The attendees included the above Executive Committee members and the following: Gale Malesky, Bill Smith, John Rako, Kathy Rako, and Paula Linn.
strong>Secretary’s Report: Voting of the November and December minutes were tabled until next month.
Treasurer’s Report: While Pat Beltz was not present she had submitted the December 2015 LVKCC Financial Report to Scott Douglas in advance. Scott presented her report which indicated a Checking Account ending balance of $2,247.49, and a Savings Account ending balance of $14,172.96. A motion to approve the treasurer’s report was made by Larry Palmer, and second by Jim Schulte.
Scott indicated Pat Beltz will be forwarding the financials to Aimee Douglas to do an audit (informal) of the financial records.
Scott summarized the 2015 club donations of $100 each were as follows: 1) Wildlands Conservancy, 2) American Whitewater, 3) Lehigh Nature Center, and 4) Allagash Waterway. The club had previously voted to authorize up to a $500 total donation amount for 2015.
Discussion then proceeded for donation recommendations for 2016. A question was asked if we should include the Allagash Waterway again this year. Scott explained that while it is a tremendous program, the intent last year was to recognize the organization since they would not/could not accept any tips for their transportation services during the trip. The following organizations were suggested: 1) Team River Runner (by Sheldon Linn), 2) Wildlands Conservancy (by Dan Rempp), 3) American Whitewater (by Dan Rempp), 4) Lehigh Nature Center (by Dan Rempp), and 5) Friends of Lake Nockamixon (by Jim Schulte). The Friends of Lake Nockamixon is a volunteer organization that has performed various improvement projects on the grounds of the lake. Lisa Aderhold indicated she recalled reading about this organizations role in establishing the sand bottom kayak/canoe launch area that some attending meeting members had recently used at the Three Mile Run put in. A motion to approve these 2016 donation recommendations was made by Scott Douglas, and second by Sheldon Linn.
Jim Schulte indicated Team River Runner, which has separated from Wounded Warriors, is a year round program that Jim Riley has been actively involved in running it.
Membership Report: Dan Rempp indicated our dues paying membership is comprised of 120 individuals; which represents 79 families. Facebook has 732 registered viewers, and Meetup has 493; however these are not all paying members. Jim Schulte commented – when we (the club) run a trip, the participants must be a member. Upon inquiry Dan cited a recollection that at most in any point in the past we had 375 members (paying). That was before the availability of social media.
Paula Linn asked if the club has a mission statement. Scott Douglas replied that while the club does not have a formal mission statement, the club’s primary emphasis has been: 1) provide a welcoming environment to all skill levels, 2) promote safety, and 3) increase participant skill level.
John Rako indicated how the club’s purpose has evolved, and shared input on the early club history. He saw some resistance in those days by the club in not wanting to bring in new, inexperienced paddlers. It wasn’t until Lafayette College raised the price for the winter pool rental, that they recognized the value of bringing in new members.
Scott Douglas indicated he runs the youth program which exposes paddling to the younger participants to continue to build the club. As Jim Schulte added, the club needs to stay diverse. Paddle boarding is now becoming a big sport. John Rako added that the young families are an excellent group for our club. The Boy Scouts of America participants need to be at least 14 years old to join the Venture Crew. Sheldon Linn added that LL Bean could be considered our biggest competitor, however, they do not do winter sessions.
Dan Rempp indicated the club requires participants to sign a release form to participate in posted events. And we refer to the event organizer as the Trip Coordinator, and not Trip Leaders, to avoid litigation issues.
Lisa Aderhold added that the annual Lehigh Sojourn is another good source for making connections with potential new members. In a prior meeting several members, including Lisa, indicated that they got their start in the club by meeting club members on the Sojourn trip.
Dan Rempp reported that he had been contacted by Bob Rock who recommended the club remove the ACA logo from the club website. The club is not officially a member. The club carries their own insurance, and Dan’s concern with joining ACA is that there would be an official fee that would need to be paid in addition. The general consensus was that joining ACA does not provide any significant benefit to the member. While the club has various active members who are ACA certified, having the logo on the website implies that the club has an “association” with the ACA. Larry Palmer has offered to research this further. Scott D. also posed the question – “Why would we not want to?” John Rako indicated that the role of the ACA is not clear as a result of recent changes. He indicated he is on the Delaware Valley Chapter. Jim Schulte posed the question – since the club is donating to organizations, why not donate to the ACA? The decision was made to table this discussion until the club obtains a better understanding of the ACA role.
Webmaster’s Report: Dan Rempp indicated he plans to work on the broken website links in the coming month. He asked for a motion to continue payment for the website support, including the $260/year website hosting fee, and $86/ for 6 month Meetup presence; there is no charge for the Facebook page. He also stated a $25/annual fee for the Website Forum which he uses as a posting location and for storing our club minutes, and $10/month rental fee. Dan indicated this is preferred rather than storing this information on someone’s home PC such as his which does not protect the documents from PC failure. He indicated Envision Power supplies the club forum which is becoming obsolete, and Enter.Net provides the website. At some point we will need to secure a new location for storing our documents. A motion was to approve the payment of these expenses was made by Jim Schulte, and second by Scott Douglas.
Dan also indicated he would like to put the club Bylaws back on the website. A motion to approve Dan’s request was made by John Rako, and second by Scott Douglas.
· February meeting – Linda Martin indicated she did not have a program for the February meeting yet. Larry Palmer volunteered to cover cold water paddling.
· March meeting – Linda indicated she would do the March program.
· April meeting – Is the Ice Breaker Potluck dinner event at the Triboro Sportsmen Club, Cementon on Friday, April 8th.
· May meeting – Is the Paddle and Potluck dinner at the Lehigh Nature Center in Slatington. Lisa Aderhold to reserve the pavilion.
· June meeting – Is the Paddle and Swap meet at the Little Lehigh in Allentown.
· Fall program – Linda Martin indicated she will coordinate this.
· September – Next Paddle and Potluck dinner at the Lehigh Nature Center in Slatington.
Winter Pool Sessions: Scott Douglas indicated he had no new updates on the pool sessions. He did ask that we all remind the new paddlers to clean their boats before entering the pool. All boaters should remove their float bags for the pool use to help ensure everyone cleans out the leaves, and bugs. It was observed that one of our experienced paddlers showed up with oak leaves in their boat. Another boater spoke up and pointed this out to the member. Scott asked us all to be vigilant and not hesitate to speak up. We need to be good tenants at the Quakertown YMCA who offered us their pool rental for this winter session. Larry Palmer also mentioned that boaters need to clean their paddling booties. He indicated the Men’s room had muddy boot prints on the floor.
Scott Douglas directed traffic behind the pool. Entrants can’t take an immediate left; the signage indicates drivers must veer to the right to go around. Bill Smith questioned the increased presence of chlorine fumes toward the end of the pool session. A short discussion ensued on the chlorine reaction that occurs when it comes into contact with bacteria which is on our boating gear. (It was stated that Lafayette uses Bromine instead which does not react in the same way.) Dan Rempp indicated this is where it is important to have all participants shower, including their gear, before they enter the pool.
Plans were discussed for the annual pool slalom event. All agreed to run this event on the 13th week. There is a 14th week (April 17th) on the contract; but concern is that we may have fewer participants on this last date due to the warming weather outside.
For John Rako’s pool classes, the classroom part will end at 6:30pm, and the pool portion of the class will begin.
Beginner Series: Larry Palmer indicated he is looking forward to enlisting the help of others to run these trips including: Yvonne Wagner, Eric Schweitzer, and Linda Martin.
Intermediate Series: Scott Douglas indicated he will work with Larry Palmer to plan trips, and include 2 Tohickon classes, the Mongap, and the Yough. These trips would be Class ratings of 3+ (4-). As a reminder this is everyone’s opportunity to get their teaching time in by assisting on these trips.
Lehigh Release Dates: Larry Palmer indicated no release dates have been confirmed yet. Scott Douglas plans to run another “guide” class in April, which he ran on Section 3 last year.
Tuesday on Little Lehigh: Looking for someone to act as a leader for these sessions. Lisa Aderhold mentioned that Eric Schweitzer and John Franolich did a great job last year in coordinating practice sessions, including setting up an obstacle course. Dan Rempp indicated he will contact the Park Commission to get approval for use; involves getting a general statement of use. He indicated he will be contacting the new Parks Director.
Sunday on Lehigh: Scott Douglas indicated the club previously ran Sunday fun trips on the Lehigh. The comments shared indicated this has occurred in smaller, less formal groups; more like pick up trips. Scott indicated if someone would like to coordinate these trips, we could try it again. However, all agreed to table the organized fun trips discussion for now; to leave it informal.
Flat Water/Recreational Trips: Dan Rempp is planning to do a May/June skills session. He plans to do trips at the following places – Blue Marsh, Merrill Creek, and Nockamixon. Jim Schulte suggested consider adding an overnight trip. Sheldon Linn added that the Pine Barrens is a good overnight trip. The rivers include the Mullica and the Batsto.
Certification Class: Scott Douglas asked if we want to continue sending individuals for training; ideally one male, and one female pending their ability to then volunteer their time. The names mentioned included Laurie Winarski, Yvonne Wagner, and Eric Schweitzer. Larry Palmer indicated he would like to get certified to teach swift water rescue. He will get the price information.
Ice Breaker: Lisa Aderhold indicated the Ice Breaker date is set for Friday, April 8th at Triboro Sportsmen Club, in Cementon (same location as last year). Lisa proposed changing up the menu. While everyone seemed to like the Baked Chicken and Vegetable Lasagna meal in the past, comments this past year after the meal mix-up implied that not only were they unhappy about the mix-up but they were not happy with it being the same menu. The rental hall does list other meal options on their website but none seemed to be a good fit. Lisa indicated they do custom menus upon request; she indicated a menu selection of baked ziti and a salad was being considered.
Larry Palmer proposed switching the “menu” around by doing the potluck for the Ice Breaker (April event), and do the catered meal for the Holiday party (December event). He pointed out that the December holiday period is extra busy for many families, and having to cook for the club potluck at that time is challenging. All agreed that this was a good idea.
Lisa indicated she would like to seek out a new volunteer to plan and coordinate the door prize event if we want to do it again at this event. Since we discussed changing this to be a potluck event, we will not be charging for the meal. The raffle event was only done at the catered dinner. Does it make sense to keep this with the catered meal? Lisa will continue to gather further feedback.
Paddler of the Year Award: Scott Douglas indicated he has not received any votes to date for candidates. Jeff Wartluft has the awards ready; just need to add the names.
Salmon River, NY Trip: Sheldon Linn indicated interest in posting as a club sponsored trip; which currently occurs as a pickup trip. It would require a trip coordinator.
Deerfield, VT Trip: Larry Palmer indicated interest in posting as a club sponsored trip; which currently occurs as a pickup trip. This also would require a trip coordinator.
Larry March Slalom Event: Dan Rempp indicated the dates will be September 10th and 11th; with the 9th as the setup date. According to the information he found, this will be the 40th year Penn Cup event. He reviewed prior information with Jeff Wartluft and his old brochures for prior events. He asked John Rako for input. Dan indicated if we want to do something special, he would need more help. Scott Douglas, John Rako, and Dan will meet and discuss further.
Leaser Lake River Runner Program: Jim Schulte indicated if we want to participate we should also provide at least 3 or 4 boats. Since this is expected to be ongoing the club would then need a storage area for the boats, and committed volunteers who would be willing to put in the time. He indicated he plans to talk with John Munk to get more information. We had volunteers from prior meetings, but no action was taken at that time. Jim will draft a proposed message and submit it to the Executive Committee for review and approval to solicit interested volunteers.
Blue Mountain Fish and Game Youth Program: Dan Rempp indicated June 18th is the date of this year’s event. He is looking for volunteers to coordinate the program. Last year’s event was very successful. Dan Rempp and Jim Schulte plan to work on this further.
Walnutport Canal Festival: Dan Rempp and Bob Brunda to organize the program for this year’s event.
Spring River Cleanup: Bill Smith indicated he will contact the Salisbury Township to determine their interest for doing a cleanup this spring. He indicated the Lehigh Valley Hospital withdrew from participating in this event.
Club By-Laws: Dan Rempp distributed printed copies of the club by-laws; including copies that were handed to the club President, and club Secretary for record retention.
· General Membership Meeting – Thursday, February 4th, 2016
· General Membership Meeting – Thursday, March 3rd, 2016
· Ice Breaker – Friday, April 8th, 2016
· Others – See Website Forums page, also Facebook & Meetup sites (Lehigh Valley Kayak & Canoe Club) for current trip postings.
The next General Membership Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, February 4th, 2016 at the Wildlands Conservancy, Emmaus, PA.