SIDNEY — The final results of the city of Sidney’s summer food programs was discussed at the Sidney Recreation Board’s Sept. 14 meeting.
Sidney Parks and Recreation Department Specialist Jennie Rogers provided the presentation of the summer food and backpack program to board members.
The programs were offered from June 1 through Aug. 7, at 12 Sidney park sites. Rogers said attendance of the food program was down this year by 226 children compared to 2019. The hot meals for the Summer Lunch Program, served Monday through Friday, was prepared by Wilson Health.
This Backpack Program sent home 2,268 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 ready-to-eat, non-perishable food, Rogers noted, is loaded into zip-lock bags, instead of actual “backpacks” to send home with the children.
Sidney Body Carstar, Buckeye Ford, Cargill, FISH of Shelby County and Emerson Climate sponsored the backpack program again this year.
She thanked the sponsors and the Sidney City Council for its continued support of the summer programs for the youth and community.
In other business, Sidney Parks and Recreation Director Duane Gaier led a discussion with board members about former Sidney resident Albert Binkley Dickas’s proposal of sponsoring the construction of a memorial facility in the Aschenbach Grove, the site of Big Rock, at Tawawa Park which he was considering putting into his will. He also proposed naming the structure Binkley Pavilion, after his maternal great-grandfather William Binkley. Dickas said Binkley was the editor of The Sidney Journal from 1869 to 1905.
It is unclear, Gaier said, if Dickas would also be paying for the driveway and parking lot needing to be constructed that would lead to the shelter. It will be brought up in future conversations, he noted. The board voted to approve the pavilion and its name pending Dickas’ approval of all financial estimates.
Also at the meeting, board members discussed and voted to choose winners of the city’s photography contest. The photos were broken into four categories: Flora, Wildlife, Landscape and Adventure. They chose winners for first, second and third place of each category, as well as the best of show.
The following contestants were named in each category and for the best of show:
• Flora: first: Joyce Arnold; second: Sherri Overholser; third: John Blackford.
• Wildlife: first: Joyce Arnold; second: Mark Blackford; third: John Blackford.
• Landscape: first: Mark Blackford; second: Joyce Arnold; third: Sherri Overholser.
• Adventure: first: Mark Blackford; second: Joyce Arnold; third: John Blackford.
• Best in Show: Joyce Arnold-Flora.
During the comments portion of the meeting, Tim Bickel, board secretary, asked if there was graffiti or anything happening in the parks. Gaier told him some shingles at Brown Park were ripped off during early morning hours earlier in the summer by young kids. He said the park ranger caught the children responsible by viewing surveillance cameras in the area. Gaier also reported graffiti at some other parks, but nothing too bad.
Ed Hamaker, Sidney City Council representative to the board, thanked Rogers for her hard work on the summer programs. He also asked everyone wear a mask, be safe and social distance from one another.
Gaier reported the Disc Golf Tournament held the weekend of Sept. 12-13 at Tawawa Park was a success. There were a total of 90 disc golfers from many different areas.
He also updated members that the shelter the new Heritage Park has been started. He is working to get an estimate for the playground structure.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.