Thursday, January 06, 2005

Hockey's Lockout isn't only for NHL. It stretches to city kids still and again.

One of my nagging pet projects is the now closed, indoor ice rink. It's the only indoor facility in the city. it could be opened without costing the city a dime. So, real hockey isn't being played in the city, still. We've got teams and players too.

Another type of hockey we've played is indoor at the Market House. The season should start NOW. But, we're in the dark again, still.

Here is my letter to my city council member, Gene R., and city council's chair of Parks & Rec, Jim M. Just for added spice, I'm sending the email to Dan O, ACE. He's spoke at an event I hosted and talked about the rec center situation.

Guys -- we're hungry for info on the city REC stuff and the MARKET HOUSE

Hi Gene and Jim,

This is more of a personal plea of help.

The Market House on the South Side is a rec center that isn't slated to open. But, we need to get some answers as to what's what. Are the leases being changed? Are the nights available? Can the activities come under the city's insurance again?

In the fall, a handful of workers busted themselves to open the Market House for recreational use by the kids. We played indoor soccer 3 days a week. Kids 4,5,6, and 7,8,9 and 10,11,12 had a fun season. This was run by PARENT VOLUNTEERS without CITY staffers. We had the keys to the building, clean-up duties, supplied our own toilet paper. We payed a fee per hour of use. The
Association had to have its own insurance.

The kids got shirts and fund raised and our fees went up a significant amount.

But, we want to play INDOOR HOCKEY in the gym (wearing sneakers, masks, etc) in January.

As Ormbsy opens and as Phillips opens, perhaps???, then the kids might go over there. What programs are they running?

The one guy who works as our PRESIDENT is a city policeman. Another works for the city EMS. You know I've been around the block on this too over time.

Plus, we know that there are bigger things to deal with -- like the crazy taxing structure for the $52 fee. But, our kids can't wait.

We just want to do what is right and good for the kids.

The BIG LEAGUE group is gone now too. But, the rub is that the volunteers want and try to make things function, but we can't get the right insight and info from the City and those on Grant Street.

Can we run the hockey program at the Market House? Can the terms be just like they were in the fall?

My cell: 412-298-3432.

This is a GREAT example as to why we need to:

1. Form a NEW Pittsburgh Park District so we can have control of our own facilities and not be wrapped up in all the other headaches you've got to deal with on Grant Street with city government.

2. Force Tom Murphy to resign NOW. (I can still dream.)

3. Jim, if you want to call for a city-wide PARKS summit in the next few weeks, to air out what's what and what is going to happen -- let's do it. I'll organize it. Let's gather at a church or at the Market House itself. Let's get all the boosters to gather. Let's not do the same train wreck as
occurred with an AQUATICS Task Force. Jim, as chair of Parks & Rec, we crave that stand-up leadership and partnering in the community.

I understand that everyone is putting out fires and it has to be busy for you all. Reply as you can and are able. Let me know if and HOW I can help to instigate and agitate.

1 comment:

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