Notes from FODP meeting May 23, 2012

Final notes from the meeting of Friends of Dieppe Park this past Wednesday, May 23rd.

Friends of Dieppe Park, Toronto

Notes from Meeting May 23rd

Remarks Bar and Grill, 7pm

In Attendance;

Ed Horner, Ed McConnell (East York Soccer), Pamela Davies and Nick Sissakis (EYCI and local resident).

All notes of comment attribution are pretty rough, as everyone was contributing ideas and suggestions so quickly.

Soccer

  • EM.  Soccer field is in rough shape. Surface is uneven to the point of safety hazard for players
  • Apparently the occasional lawn sprinkler head has been cut off during lawn maintenance
  • EM.  Not happy about soccer field user fees for next year, but at least teams have been given notice
  • EM.  Offer from East York Soccer to help with the field maintenance has received luke-warm reception – apparently due to uncertainty about how or even if, this would impact union work(?)
  • EM.  2,400 kids play at the Dieppe field every summer
  • EM.  Fence around baseball diamond does not seem high enough.  One concussion has occurred.  Soccer teams now have one person on watch at the fence to call out if ball comes over, to help avoid more injuries (could diamond be re-oriented to minimize balls going over fence onto soccer field?)
  • EM.  Only time washrooms are open is when team has key
  • EH.  The soccer field and baseball diamond are real assets for the neighbourhood and need to be maintained or preferably improved.

Baseball

  • EH.  Sat and watched a couple of games over the past week.  The new tall fence to the east of the diamond seems not to stop the foul balls from going into the parking lot!  One poor guys car got dinged.  He just shrugged “summer beater, no big deal.”
  • EH.  Is there any way the “block house” of the announcers booth can be made to look more presentable?  Couple of hanging plants, foundation plants?  Not sure how, but I’m sure it can be done.  At least remove the graffiti.

 Tennis

  • EM.  Apparently tennis courts exist on the surface of the rinks.  What is their state of repair and is there any possibility they could be opened?  Do they run east-west or north-south (across the rink dividing boards)?

Greening

  • PD.  In general, EY needs more green spaces and places for organized sports.  Existing (sports facilities) seem overused and under maintained
  • PD.  Paula and her partner, (Steve Smith) did a “quick and dirty” inventory of newly planted trees and although not definitive (not all trees are leafed out) here’s what they found;
    • 2 Eastern Red Buds (cercis Canadensis)
    • 1 Ginkgo (biloba),
    • 1 Linden – maybe silver or little leaf – unknown at this time
    • 2 Freeman Maple (acer xfreemanii),
    • 1 Sugar Maple (acer saccharum),
    • 1 Tulip tree (a.k.a Yellow Poplar – liriodendron tulipifera)
    • 1 Red Oak (a.k.a Northern Red Oak – quercus rubra)
    • 1 Swamp White Oak (Quercus bicolor)
    • 1 Elm – (presumably English Elm – ulmus procera)
    • 1 Rock Elm (ulmus thomasii)
    • 3 Mountain Ashe (eucalyptus regnans)
  • EM.  Some disappointment with the newly planted trees not having at least a couple of white oaks (apparently they are in decline in EY) and are native to the area
  • PD & EM.   Dieppe Park seems heavily used but maintenance seems low
  • Would be nice to see flowerbeds along Cosburn or Memorial Aves.
  • EH.  Adopt-A-Tree program should be undertaken similar to (but on a smaller scale) the one at Trinity Bellwoods

Community

  • NS.  A pumpkin festival would be easy to organize.  Neighbours bring their Jack-o-lanterns to park the evening after Halloween and line the path with them.  Volunteers put in candles and light them after dark.  Neighbourhood gets to “take back the park” for at least one night and helps build community.  Pumpkins are extinguished and city workers pick them up for composting.  East Lynn Park has a pumpkin walk.  We can learn from them.
  • NS.  Place for BBQ or fire pit?
  • We need more reasons for people to go to Dieppe
  • EM.  Washrooms rarely open – if ever
  • NS.  Neighbourhood garden market where neighbours bring over excess fruits and vegetables on certain days for donation or sale
  • EM.  Dogs run loose and leave their mess behind (before each soccer evening, EYS has teams line up and walk the length of the field to pick up dog droppings
  • Can snack bar be leased or similar
  • Can food trucks be allowed into parking lot during events? This would save people from having to leave the park for ice cream or hot dog.
  • FODP table at Community Environment Day June 16th.

Schools

  • EYCI has an environment club that might want to help with “greening” projects.  Flowerbed planting?
  • EY Soccer has arrangements with TDSB to use many of the sports fields around the borough

Churches

  • East York United run a “drop-in” 9-11 weekdays for kids and moms.  They go to the park once a week, but the washrooms aren’t open.

Other Groups

  • Nicks’ wife, Jen, is a member of a “Mom’s Group” and they use the park.  She and her group may be able to help in some way.
  • Park contact list for people who’s homes border the park (police, fire, ambulance, park supervisor, Councilor Fragedakis, etc)

 Other Ideas worth exploring (no particular order)

  • Ball Hockey tournament in parking lot
  • PD.  Ecology/History Walk in neighbourhood?
  • Place for BBQ or fire pit?
  • NS.  “Kids only” section of park?
  • NS & PD.  Plaques on trees to identify them?
  • NS.  Arena soccer on rink surface?
  • NS.  Would home owners pay to have a locked gate from their yards into park?
  • EM.  Some area for basketball?

Administration

  • Bank account for group opened
  • FODP e-mail address and e-mail contact list
  • Start thinking about fundraising

BBQs, donations, silent auctions, picnics, art park, etc.

_____________________________

Next Steps

Two items were identified as most pressing;

  1. Getting a table at the upcoming Community Environment Day (V,$)
  2. Adopt-a-tree program (V,FPR,$$)

Both of these are time-sensitive and inter-connected.

Other Priorities

  1. Washrooms open during summer more frequently (maybe only weekends with limited hours on trial basis) (FPR, $$)
  2. Neighbourhood garden market looked into (V,$,FPR)
  3. Pumpkin Walk in the fall (V,FPR)
  4. Flower-beds prepped for planting this fall and plants selected and sourced (V,$,FPR)

Above are the “low hanging fruit” projects that don’t need too much in the way of resources or expertise.

Longer Term Projects

  1. Re-surface soccer field (FPR,$$)
  2. Higher fence for baseball diamond (FPR,$$)

Resource Legend

V – FODP Volunteers

FPR – Department of Forestry, Parks and Recreation

$ – Money sourced from FODP

$$ – Money Sourced from City

Meeting concluded about 8:45 with thanks to all for coming and their contribution.

 

Ed Horner

For Friends of Dieppe Park

Final notes completed May 25, 2012

Distributed to attendees and Councilor Mary Fragedakis via e-mail.

 

 

 

 

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