The regular meeting was called to order at 7:35 p.m. by Mayor Harry Shortway.

In attendance: Mayor Harry Shortway, William Shapiro, Denise Urbaniak, Kyla Rocha, Heather Labance, Mary Ellen Vichiconti, Kelly Weller, Laurie Studley, Cherie Shortway, Jeanne Buffalino, Mishelle Downtain

Swearing in of Members and Member Introductions

Mayor Shortway led the meeting with the “Pledge of Allegiance,” followed by the swearing in of the following Board of Recreation members: William Shapiro, Denise Urbaniak, Mary Ellen Vichiconti, Kyla Rocha, and Kelly Weller.

Members introduced themselves and provided a brief biography.

Meeting Intro

Mayor Shortway explained the contract between the township and the Vernon PAL to administer programs and events that were previously administered by the township’s Director of Community Affairs.

Mayor Shortway also presented his vision for the Board of Recreation.

  • Focus should be on recreational events and opportunities.
  • Work together with the Greenway Action Advisory Committee and the Economic Development Committee and other committees and local businesses to bring Vernon to its fullest potential.
  • Asked members to “think outside the box.”

Vernon PAL Presentation: Jeanne Buffalino, Assistant Director Vernon PAL

  • Jeanne asked the recreation board members for their assistance and volunteer time necessary to implement the following events and programs that will now be administered by the PAL.
    • Couch to 5K program
    • 5K Race—“Spring In Your Step”
    • Vernon Day
    • Yoga in the Park
    • Movies in the Park
    • Walks in the Park
    • Trunk or Treat
    • Tree Lighting
  • Suggested that the recreation board members purchase shirts to identify them at events.
  • Current focus is on the Couch to 5K program which begins on March 20th and the 5K Race on May 22nd.
  • Would like to have a recreation board member act as a “lead” for each event and coordinate assistance and volunteers for that event.
  • Other upcoming PAL events: Fishing Derby, April 23rd and Vernon Day on June 5th.

Couch to 5K and 5K Race Presentation: Cherie Shortway and Laurie Studley

  • Couch to 5K will meet 3 days per week—Tuesday and Thursdays at 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., and Sundays at 9 a.m.
  • Open to anyone age 16 and over and participants do not have to be a Vernon resident.
  • Cost of program includes training sessions, 5K registration fee and t-shirt to designate program participants.
    • Participants will also receive training, motivation, and nutrition information.
  • Proceeds from the Couch to 5K program will go towards PAL Scholarship fund which provides scholarships for students with hardships.
  • Proceeds from the 5K Race will go to a local family in need. That family has not yet been selected.
  • Planning for 300 race participants.
  • Currently starting the process of collecting sponsorships and donations.
    • Need volunteers to solicit local businesses for sponsorships, monetary donations and donations of goods.
    • Also need donations for goody bag that is given to race participants.

Other Business

Mayor Shortway suggested creating a Facebook page for Vernon Twp. Recreation. Kelly Weller volunteered to create one.

Motion to adjourn at 9:10 p.m. made by Mary Ellen Vichiconti, seconded by Heather Labance; motion approved.vvv