Park Board Minutes


February 21, 2018


Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, a regular meeting of the Wahpeton Park Board was held on Wednesday, February 21, 2018 at 5:15 pm at the Community Center in Wahpeton, North Dakota.


Commissioners present: Wayne Gripentrog, Deb Tobias, Joe Schreiner, Steve Craig.


Staff present: Wayne Beyer, Director of Parks and Recreation, John Dassenko, Park Superintendent, Laree Bumgarner, Recreation Supervisor, Kathy Diekman, Zoo Director, Connie Metcalf, Park Board Clerk.


Meeting was called to order by Wayne Gripentrog.


Motion by Steve Craig, seconded by Joe Schreiner to approve January 17, 2018 minutes.  Motion carried 4-0.


Citizens Request:    None


Reports from Officers


Zoo Director:         Kathy had to leave early. Her report was first.

Kathy reported Zoo Clean Up is set for April 14 starting at 8:30 AM.

Zoo opens April 28 at 10 AM.

CZA regular meeting is Monday February 12 starting at 5:45 PM.

Kathy and Tom will volunteer at the Fargo Sportsmen Show for the CVB March 1-4.

Kari Bolgrean accepted the Education Position and will begin March 1.

Zoo will present at marketplace for Kids in May at NDSCS.

The 2018 Chahinkapa Zoo Association Budget is presented to Wahpeton Park Board.

Kathy had notes on deficit and they strive to remedy the issue.

Live Facebook videos are being done each week.

Due to cutting costs the Zoo Director will substitute where needed in the Ed. Department.

Long summer hours begin May 11.

Director said 93% of visitors are from out of the area.

The Brew has partnered with the Chahinkapa Zoo.

Park Superintendent:     John said he has been having the College kids flooding the Multipurpose Court.

A new flag rope is needed at the Airport.

He has been getting the paperwork done for the summer employees that will be hired.

Has trouble every year with hiring due to no applications come in? Very long discussion on what the park

needs to do?  Can we use RRGH residents?   John said to be able to work there- you have to be 16 years old to mow or run the

weed eater. They get 40 hours/week.  Nobody wants to run a weedeater for 8 hours/day. Maybe can set a schedule to switch off/on

to different tasks daily?  Could some from the Zoo help at park to get their hours in?

John said the older guys won’t do that either. They will say they were hired to mow. Deb Tobias asked who the boss was down


Deb Tobias brought up the Hughes Shelter. She said the blinds were so dirty. She used a pail of water for each and said the water

was so black. She said that is inexcusable. Someone needs to deep clean all the shelters. Customers are paying us and they

expect them to be clean. The new blinds won’t go up until windows and sills are clean.

Both doors should have been replaced a year ago.

Steve Craig had issues with the letter he received from John about his evaluation.

John said he feels he has lost carry over hours from 2017 and not sure why?

The park needs to be kept clean and jobs need to get done. If employees don’t want to do, it then they will be asked to


Communication has got to get better between staff and employees at the park.



 Recreation Supervisor:  Adult Volleyball, Men’s and Traveling Basketball going well. Having a Middle School Dance February 23 and March 23.

Warming house is open daily.

Open gym is every Sunday through March 25th.

Had a great turnout for February Basketball tournaments with 36-37 teams coming in.  Huskie Hoop-It-Up is March 17th with 19

teams so far.  (Boys 3rd – 8th)

Youth Volleyball starts Feb 27-March 27th at Wahpeton Elementary/Middle School. Head Coach: Katelyn Thiele,

Summer Sponsor letter were sent out this week.  Applications being taken for summer coaches.


Director:                          Grant applications were submitted to the North Dakota Game and Fish Department for benches on the four

local fishing piers on the Bois de Sioux and Red Rivers.

Withuski Dentistry donated $700 to the Wahpeton Special Olympics program.

$2160 grant was received from the ND Council on the Arts for the local Art4Life Program.

Wilkin County Soil and Conservation awarded a $4000 grant to the Red River Area Sportsmen’s Club to address

Aquatic nuisance species on the Red River.

Wahpeton will be competing in the ND Special Olympics State Basketball Tournament in Minot on March 9 and 10th.

Staff is transitioning to on-line picnic shelter reservations. It became active to the public on February 20th.

Pickleball is becoming a very popular Community Center activity.




Reports from Commissioners and Committees:


Recreation –     Joe Schreiner reported that in Baseball 15 & 16 will be playing together.


Head of the Red Youth – Received new electric Zamboni.  Questioning what to do with old Zamboni. If park could use it?  Storage? Fixing it?


Maintenance – Discussed John Randall baseball field. Chad Affield talked to Diamond Doctor Maintenance to replace pitching mound. Is Red Clay better then Brown Clay? Wayne Gripentrog said he is against red because it never comes out of uniforms. That would get costly to replace uniforms all the time.

Joe will do some research and bring it to the next meeting.

Want to change meeting schedule to 2nd Wed of month.  Will wait until Devry is back to verify with him.


Personnel/Finance/Planning –     Discussed hiring a Full-time staff for Lynn Sabbe’s position when he retires in December. Board would like someone to shadow his position.  Deb Tobias made a motion, seconded by Steve Craig to pursue to hire a Fulltime staff for Lynn’s position. Motion carried. 3-0.


Approve committee reports – Motion by Deb Tobias, seconded by Steve Craig.  Motion Carried.  3-0.


Scheduled Committee meetings:

  1. Recreation Committee – Thursday, March 8th – noon hour at WCC.
  2. Maintenance Committee – Tuesday, March 13th at WCC at 9 AM.
  3. Personnel/Finance/Planning Committee – Friday, February 23 at WCC – 8:30 AM.


Commissioner’s requests– none


Financial Reports:

Deb Tobias motioned to approve financial reports, seconded by Steve Craig. Motion Carried. 3-0.

Steve Craig motioned to approve payment of Park Board bills, seconded by Deb Tobias.  Motion Carried. 3-0.


Unfinished / New Business:  none


Date of next meeting: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 – 5:15 Wahpeton Community Center.