MACOMB — Park Director Rachel Lenz told the board of commissioners this week that the park district has received a $27,000 Local CURE grant from the state. She said the money would be used for reimbursement of COVID-19 prevention expenses.

Lenz said "safe six" posters have been put up in the parks to encourage masks and social distancing. She said there was a good public turnout last week for the unveiling of the Patton Park project and offered thanks to commissioners and to State Representative Norine Hammond for attending the session.

The park director said donations are being sought for park improvements. Lenz said families have the opportunity to name a tree, people can purchase stone impressions for the dog park, and businesses are contributing to the Push 4 Parks campaign. She said there will be children's tours at the park from 4 to 7 p.m. on September 25, and that there will be a community question and answer session at Patton Park from 1 to 4 p.m.on September 27.

Lenz said there will be a movie in the park on Friday, with "Onward" being shown at 7:30 p.m. at Veterans Park. She said the Ball Fore Family Entertainment Center will open in two weeks, and that the summer softball league for adults was so successful that a fall league has been formed.

District Treasurer Russ Hamm reported that the general fund ended August with $561,669 and the consolidated fund totaled $610,374. He said the district received a property tax payment last month of $134,529.

Board President Phil Weiss said he has received a focus report from Western Illinois University's Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Administration and that some of the information can be included in the park district's strategic plan.

Commissioners were introduced to Peace Corps Fellow Jason "Rok" Locksley. The Virginia native is a WIU graduate student and worked overseas in the Philippines and in Moldavia. He said he was a rock climbing instructor and that resulted in his nickname because there was another American named Jason.

Julie Eggleston, McDonough County Special Recreation Association program supervisor, told the board that bowling and physical fitness programs are being alternated on Tuesdays. She said she is developing a fall program guide.

Eggleston is also on the WIU RPTA faculty and said her students are assisting with programs at Bickford Cottage, with virtual programs on Thursdays for Mosaic, and in developing an assessment process for program participants. She said there is a kayak program being offered at Spring Lake, and that there will be a Halloween program offered on October 30.

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