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Park & Rec discuss fees and memberships
darlington city hall

DARLINGTON – Park & Rec Chair John Sonsalla called the Jan. 28, 2020 meeting to order of the Darlington Park & Rec Committee at 6:30 p.m.

The committee discussed raising fees for the Dora Ritter Wellness Center.

Wellness Center Director, Amy Prine began the conversation by saying, “We haven’t raised fees for, I want to say five years. Raising fees had been brought up in a previous meeting. Originally I was thinking we should raise our prices, I’m not going to deny that. But after further thinking, I put a lot of thought into it, now I’m thinking our prices are okay where they are. I’m open to suggestions from the committee.”

Park & Rec Chair, John Sonsalla stated, “Your stats say you are getting more and more members. I would leave it alone, those are good numbers.”

The Wellness Center has 393 members, consisting of 737 people, as of January 2020.

Mayor Dave Breunig pointed out, “The Park & Rec Department, including the Wellness Center, is doing very well and except for the pool, it is not a burden to the taxpayers. We have to keep in mind that this is a business. We are fortunate that we have a campground that is doing very well. The campground supports the swimming pool.”

Prine said, “I’ve worked really, really hard to turn things around at the Wellness Center and as you have seen the membership numbers are skyrocketing.”

Committee member Erin Gallagher asked if the committee would consider adding a new category of one adult and one child.

Committee member Leah Gollmer said, “If you’re going to modify the category, we should make it one adult and children (not one child).”

Committee member Jill Ringen said, “Then you’re a family.”

After more discussion the committee approved adding a category – one adult and one dependent (under 18 years of age, in high school and live in the same household) the membership was set at $406 per year.

The committee also approved keeping the fees the same.

2020 Wellness Center Memberships

            Yearly pre-paid: Family Membership (two adults and children under 18 yrs. of age and in High School in same household) - $478; Individual Membership - $346.00; Couple Membership (must live in same household) - $406.00; One Adult and One Dependent (dependent must be under 18 years of age, in high school and live in the same household) - $406; Senior Individual Membership (over age 62) - $250.00; Senior Couple Membership (one member over age 62) - $300.00; Student Membership (12 years thru full time college student) - $216.00; Day Care Provider Membership - $271.00.

            Monthly: Family Membership - $44.00/mo.; Individual Membership - $33.00/mo.; Couple Membership - $38.00/mo.; One Adult and One Dependent - $38/mo.; Senior Individual Membership - $25.00/mo.; Senior Couple Membership - $30.00/ mo.; Student Membership - $20.00/mo.

Start up fee (transaction fee, orientation and one new key) - $50.00; Replacement Keys - $15.00; Locker rental - $25.00 per year. Fitness Class: Per class Member - $3.00; Non-member - $6.00.


Sonsalla brought up the topic of badges for wellness center members. He said, “If we’re having issues in the gym of determining who’s a member and who’s not a member. I think we should have badges to clear this up. We can’t control who’s coming in and out. We don’t know if they are members.”

Prine responded, “As you all know I brought that up before and it was kind of a joke. When it was brought up before the cost was $2 per badge and now they’ve raised it to $5 (if Prine takes the photo). The cost would be $7 if they (the badge company) did it all. The badge will be a picture and a name. The kids’ badge would be good for one year and adult badges would be good for five years.”

Badge discussion, ideas, conversation and wrangling were had. The committee was leaning towards implementing a badge program for students and not adults. No action was taken and Prine will look into making the badges themselves to save on costs.

In Other Business:

The committee approved raising two fees for 2020, the T-Ball and Pitchball were raised $5. All other fee will remain the same.

The 2020 Darlington Park & Rec fees schedule

Pool - Family, season - $96.00, Adult season - $53.00, Grade & high school - $50.00; General Admission Adult - $4.00, Grade & high school - $3.50, Senior citizens (65 years) - free, Swim lessons - $30.00, Parent Aquatic A - $25.00, Parent Aquatic B - $25.00, Private Party Rental - $100.00/hr.

Shelter House rent - Swimming Pool Park - $50.00, Riverside Park - $50.00, Black Bridge Park - $50.00.

Camping Fee: Electric site - $20.00/night, Non-electric site - $15.

Recreation Programs

Summer: T-Ball - $20.00, Pitchball - $20.00, Pony league - $35.00, Girls softball - $25.00. Fall: Flag football 3-6 grade - $20.00. Winter: Girls basketball 2-3-4 grade - $20.00, Boys basketball 2-3-4 grade - $20.00. Spring: Dodgeball 3-6 grade - $20.00.

Adult Programs

Softball League: League game - $5.00; Tournament game: Friday - $10.00, Saturday - $30.00, Sunday - $30.00, Player fee - $100.00/team; Non Recreation program usage - $10.00/night; Adult Basketball League: Team Fee - $50.00/team; Adult Volleyball League: Winter (gym rental) - $10.00/hour, Summer (co-ed) - $25.00/ team.

•Approved increasing the 2020 summer employment wages by 2%.

•Discussed regarding the 2020 Bunny Hop recipient. No recipient was decided on, Prine was given possible candidates for the donation and the authority to select the recipient.

•Discussed the pool committee. The committee asked why no members of the Park & Rec board were on the pool committee. Park & Rec Director Wade Berget stated they were following the guidelines of Burbach Aquatics, Inc.

•Discussed a sinkhole along a portion of the walking trail. Berget will talk to Backyard, LTD.

•Discussed repairing/replacing the handicapped fishing pier. The pier will be fixed sometime during this year, when the river level is down.