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Local

Geneva Park Board sets special meeting on closures, cancellations

Public can participate via teleconference

As a public service, Shaw Media will provide open access to information related to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) emergency. Sign up for the newsletter here

GENEVA – The Geneva Park District has set a special meeting at 3 p.m. Tuesday via teleconference to discuss facility closures and program cancellations, officials announced.

So far all social events are canceled – including the annual Earth Day celebration on April 25 – according to the district’s online calendar at www.genevaparks.org.

“God of Carnage” at Playhouse 38 is canceled, but a hopeful message states, “May be postponed at a later date.”

The calendar states that March performances of “Into the Woods” and “Aladdin Jr.” are postponed.

All facilities, programs and special events at the park district are currently canceled through April, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And all playground structures, park restrooms, and disc golf at Wheeler Park remain closed as well.

Park Board President Susan Vander Veen said the special meeting was called because the board has to discuss the financial impact of the coronavirus.

“What we are losing, our lost revenue, what we still have to pay out to maintain our presence – and what we are going to do about employment,” Vander Veen said. “We have to talk about what is going to happen. We are going to have a public meeting and listen to anyone who wants to say anything.”

Public comments for the meeting are welcome via email to bpattermann@genevaparks.com or voice mail at 630-232-2202 until 2:30 p.m. March 31 and will be shared at the meeting.

The public can participate in the meeting by calling 866-576-7975, and giving 736236 as the participant access code.

“When all of this landed was at the end of our winter season. When we had to cancel the classes, we prorated the rest of that season. I think that the spring classes will not be held, as far as we know. If our patrons signed up for them, they’re getting a refund. As far as our gyms, their memberships will be extended.”

Vander Veen said when the board met at its regular meeting March 16, they discussed the possibility of postponing spring events.

“There wasn’t enough information at that time,” Vander Veen said. “At that point, we did not discuss it at length.”

But now that the governor’s stay-at-home order might be extended to the end of April – as the president has said it should be – the board needs to talk about what that means for the district, she said.

The meeting agenda includes a closed session to discuss personnel. The district has contracts with independent instructors for various classes, as well as full-time and part-time staff.

“How do we deal with what are our options in dealing with this calamity, this pandemic?” Vander Veen said. “We need to explore all our options.”

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