Sycamore Island
Meeting Minutes

March 9, 2011

Larry Heilman, Jim Drew, Joe Hage, David Winer, Bill and Lucky Marmon, Gerry Barton, John Noble, Tryon Wells, Drew Walsh, Peter Winkler, Marc Bergeron, Alison and Richard Burns, Alan Gelb, Charlotte Brewer, Jeff Komarow, Sherry Fitzdale, Ann Marie Cunningham

The meeting was called to order by President Jim Drew after a fascinating slide show of the wildlife of the Galapagos Islands, presented by our host, Larry Heilman.

The minutes, as printed in The Islander, were approved.

Chuck Pill wrote from Rwanda that he will be unable to perform the duties of the supervisor of Carpentry/Painting. He insists that the demands of the supervisor job was not the reason he left for Kigali, as there has been little demand for his services since the completion of the club house renovation planning, and because of Joeís supreme skills in painting and caretaking. A volunteer is needed to step into this role.

Captain/Caretaker Report:
Tryon Wells reports that construction of the new captainís float will be postponed until next weekend due to the prediction of high water and the subsequent closure of the ferry. The materials have been purchased and are on the Island. The new float will be like a floating veranda, approximately 12' x 20' in size. It will be built in sections, like the canoe float, but there will be a more robust method of connecting the sections for increased stability. The cost will be between $2,000 and $2,500.

The preparations for a 12' flood have been completed, with the floats and canoes from the lower level of the shed tied up. Joe Hage, Tryon Wells, and Drew Walsh welcome others to their work crew.

Joe Hage had not heard from the Park Service volunteer coordinator about adopting a mile along the towpath. The coordinator will write a contract that will specify tasks such as picking up trash, reporting incidents, shoveling the bridge, and will cover liability issues. Joe will present details at a future meeting after he receives the contract and has an opportunity to discuss it with the coordinator.

Joe has completed Weed Warrior training and gotten his license to kill invasives such as English ivy with little disturbance to native plants.

Winter bathroom:
Gerry Barton will investigate alternatives to construction of a warm bathroom by next winter. Possibilities include a new bathroom that would be next to the caretakerís, a heated stall in one of the existing bathrooms, a bucket. Gerry was presented with a sign from the old bathroom and encouraged to use it to maintain the atmosphere of the former facility.

Peter Winkler conducted a meeting earlier this week to discuss a method of admitting new members as the waiting list diminishes. There are passionate, strong-willed folks on the committee, which will result in two or three options being presented to the members for discussion. There will be a report published in The Islander in a month or two describing the options, with debate to follow. The options may be revised according to input during the debate. New members will be nominated for admission to the club after the deadline passes for paying dues. The question was raised as to what the optimum number of members would be for the club. It was noted that when waiting list members became active, the Island seemed busier, but the activity level has since dropped.

Large Parties:
John Noble introduced Marc Bergeron and his request for a large party to celebrate a big birthday. The party will be held on May 21. The request was approved.

The request sparked a discussion about whether the guidelines on large parties should be revised. Currently, the hosts are encouraged to provide ferry service for their guests. Large parties on weekends are only to be held on odd-numbered days. Current large party guidelines are on the web.

Old Business:
Larry Heilman suggests that items that should be included in the archive should be emailed to him, if possible. If it isnít available in digital format, then mail it to him.

New Business:
Alison Burns would like to brainstorm an efficient way to schedule relieve caretakers. It takes her five to ten hours per month to accomplish this.

Tryon sends an email to those who have not been relief caretaker in two years, reminding them that this club relies on active participation of members. Is it possible to create a webpage where individuals could sign themselves up for a slot? It was suggested that those who do not volunteer should be charged a fee, perhaps $50, or that it be a requirement of membership and that those who do not volunteer would lose their membership. In the past, high school students were hired to work on weekends, but that raises issues of liability insurances and workmanís compensation.

The meeting was adjourned with warm gratitude to Ann and Larry Heilman for hosting the meeting.

Respectfully submitted,

Anne Marie Cunningham
Co-Recording Secretary