Almost a week after Thanksgiving, the Richmond Parks Board still had a lot to celebrate and be thankful for, as they recognized several awards at their December meeting.
"Today is a time to recognize all of our excellence," chair of the board Jon McChesney said at the Tuesday afternoon meeting.
First to be recognized by the parks board was Speedy Denny, who recently helped the city build their first "pocket park" called Millstone Park, featuring old millstones from gristmills once used in the county. Denny donated his time, money, millstones and labor to be able to unveil the park in early October.
In a previous Register article, Denny, who collects millstones, said he thought of the idea with a purpose "to make aware to the community the significant role that millstones once played across Madison County."
For his extensive contribution, he was awarded the key to the city by Richmond Mayor Robert Blythe, presented with an award by the Chamber of Commerce and now will have a recognition from the parks board for his work, as well as being the Grand Marshall in the Richmond Christmas Parade on Friday, Dec. 6.
Joe Bentley, director of parks, building and grounds for the last 33 years, was recognized for his retirement which was announced late in November.
"You have done a terrific job for many, many years, and you will be missed," McChesney said.
Finally, the parks board in their entirety were recognized by the Kentucky Recreation and Parks Society for 'Outstanding Department' in their class.
• • •
Erin Moore, director of parks administration, gave the financial report for the park's budget through the month of October, stating the board has spent only a quarter of the budget.
"So we are a third of the way through the year, and have only spent a quarter of the budget," Moore said.
She reported that Paradise Cove generated more money this year "than any other year ever," bringing in $492,301.10 for the season.
With operating costs at just over $340,000, Paradise Cove accounted for nearly $148,000.
"That is fantastic," she said.
However, with more than usual spent on capital projects at an amount of $161,919, the pool facility that has been open for 12 seasons, was left nearly $15,000 in the red.
For Adventure Falls, both revenue and attendance was down from last year, with a revenue of over $16,000.
• The board will meet with city officials to begin the designs for their new master plan for the upcoming years. The last master plan update was created in 2014.
• Board members nominated Jon McChesney and Dan McBride again for their current positions as chair and vice chair.
• The Madison County Special Olympics raised close to $6,000 with the chili fundraiser in November.
• With the Richmond Christmas Parade set for Friday, Elizabeth Eversole, program coordinator, said the parade includes 125 floats and will be the largest one the city has seen yet. The parade is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. on Dec. 6.
• Irvinton Museum is undergoing construction, replacing the gutters for the next eight days. Soon, the museum will also have a plaque from the National Registry of Historical Sites declaring the home as such.
The Richmond Parks Board will meet again on Jan. 7, noon, at Irvinton Museum located at 345 Lancaster Ave., Richmond.