NEW HAVEN — The community center in New Haven, a part of the Claflin Bend Area Community Center Complex, got a financial boost at the most recent town council meeting, when representatives of the Robert and Louise Claflin Foundation presented a check for over $8,500.
Present were Mayor Phil Serevicz, Recorder Becky Benson, and council members Colton McKinney, Jessica Rickard, Roy Dale Grimm, and Steve Carpenter.
Foundation President Stephen Littlepage and Secretary Gary Fields gave the mayor the check, in the amount of $8,567.22. The money will be used to purchase two new heating and cooling units for the center.
In making the presentation, Littlepage noted the complex is important to the community. He added the foundation had already seen its importance when an earlier grant was given to replace one of the four heat pump units.
“But that didn’t go far enough,” Littlepage said. “Now we want to completely address the heating and cooling.”
He said the foundation was honored last year when the Claflin name was placed on the recreation complex, after a grant was given for the adjacent swimming pool. He stated the foundation doesn’t forget facilities that bear the Claflin name.
Littlepage told those attending the meeting that Fields, who resides in the New Haven area, was instrumental in making the grant possible. He added Fields knows the community needs of New Haven.
The council had earlier voted to have Todd Anderson install the new units once delivered, at a cost to the town of $2,000.
After Littlepage and Fields left the meeting, the council continued discussion on the pool and community center. Serevicz said he met with pool committee members recently, and was told attendance last summer was sometimes between 30 and 40 people.
He said money is made from concessions. Chemicals for the pool are donated, and the committee raises funds to pay the lifeguards. Admission to the pool is free.
Roller skating at the community center in the winter months on Fridays, prior to COVID-19, sometimes brought in as much as $600 a night through skate rentals and concessions. The center and pool are both rented out to individuals and groups when there is no pandemic.
The mayor said he believes the money was being placed in the general fund and not being tracked to see that the activities were, in fact, making money. He said locks are going to be changed to the community center after finding several people have keys. And, while the pool was leaking at the end of the summer, the leak has been found and will be fixed, Serevicz said.
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Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at [email protected]