SIDNEY — The city of Sidney’s summer recreation programs were a success, with an increase of children participating this year.
Sidney Parks and Recreation Department Specialist Jennie Rogers presented Sidney City Council with an overview of the food program, various recreation programs, and gave a summary of the Sidney Municipal Pool receipts at Monday evening’s workshop session.
The summer programs were offered from June 4 through Aug. 10, at nine Sidney park sites. This year an additional site at Harmon Park was added.
Out of the 31 programs offered, there were 6 new clinics available for youngsters to participate in — from “Lil Engineers” to Slime” to “Fast Pitch.” There was a total of 1,674 children who participated in this year’s clinics, which is up from the 1,428 youngsters that came out last year.
Rogers expressed gratitude to Wilson Health for continuing to prepare the hot meals for the Summer Lunch Program again this year. She said attendance in the food program increased by 335 children since 2017. The program was grant-funded from the Ohio Department of Agriculture.
This summer’s Backpack Program sent home 2,163 meals to feed area youth. Each weekend, each child was sent home with two meals in their backpacks for Saturday and Sunday, containing a protein, fruit and a grain. The food, Rogers noted, is loaded into zip-lock bags, instead of actual “backpacks” to send home with the children.
Rogers thanked Sidney Body Carstar, Buckeye Ford, Cargill and Emerson Climate for sponsoring this year’s backpack program.
The pool closed early 14 days but only once for the entire day, due to weather, this year Rogers said. Open from June 2 to Aug. 12, the pool made $3,235.47 more this year than than in 2017.
Rogers extended a “special thank you to Sidney Fire and Emergency Services for certifying our lifeguards in CPR and AED training.”
The concession stand was not profitable again this year, but was in the negative $742.17 this year compared to 2017 when the stand was in the negative $3,238.64. Rogers said they are currently looking into other vendors to use for the stand and will give a presentation on the findings a future council meeting.
Rogers noted 302 swimming lessons were packed into the four weeks they are offered. When council asked if adding an extra week of swim lessons for area children would help, she said it would be great as they were “full” last summer.
She thanked the Sidney City Council for sponsoring this year’s programs which included a total of 11,446 children who participated.
In other business, council also discussed the four modifications Assistant City Manager/Public Works Director, Gary Clough, suggested making to a utility ordinance.
The modifications to a chapter of the utility ordinance are as follows:
• Internal leaks within the building that requires the city to shut the water off at the curb stop or meter pit, shall require the repairs to be made and shall include the installation of a whole house shut off valve where the water service enters the building before water is turned back on. This will eliminate the city having to turn the water of at the curb every time there is an internal leak.
• All yard hydrants are prohibited after Jan. 1, 2019, due to lack of maintenance and leaks.
• A change of time from 5 p.m. to 4 p.m. to be consistent with city employee schedules regarding overtime hours for calls that come in after hours.
• Starting Jan. 1, 2019, all utility accounts established for tenant-occupied properties on the monthly payment program must first be secured by a deposit, which is proposed to be increased from $125 to $175.
The utility ordinance will be presented to council for further consideration at the Oct. 8 regular meeting.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.