'Friends of the Park' willing, urged to return to Bainbridge

Sunday, March 13, 2016

BAINBRIDGE -- A group of Putnam County citizens who thrive during covered-bridge season is asking to come back and again be involved with the fall festivities at Bainbridge.

And, thanks to unanimous approval by the town's council -- they're now officially invited.

The "Friends of the Park" (FOTP) group from Russellville has been a part of covered-bridge activities around the county for many years but were absent in 2015, Bainbridge Town Board President Jerry Lents said.

"In the past they met and had vendors, antiques, crafts and all kinds of stuff out here in the field," Lents said. "They weren't here last year (due to) some illnesses but they want to come back and use this field again and possibly use the building to help bring back the covered-bridge.

"They said they're guaranteed to fill this (parking) lot out here with vendors and food and everything," Lents added. "I think the town and the people like them bringing crafts and things -- I really do. They brought in a lot of people, too."

FOTP was established in 2003 and typically operates each fall in Russellville, Roachdale and Bainbridge as a member of the Indiana State Festival Association.

Located at 102 Indiana Ave. in Russellville, FOTP can be reached at 765-307-1291 or 317-410-2115 or via Facebook at Friends of the Park NP.

In other developments:

* Two ordinances were adopted upon first reading Wednesday without their respective (and necessary) second readings: 2016-1, which authorizes the acquisition of a blanket bond (an "ordinance that somebody in town takes money in" and concerns crime insurance policies) was read aloud by Lents and approved via 3-0 vote; and 2016-2, which concerned future meeting times, was approved via 3-0 vote -- meeting times for the town's regular sessions will now be at 6:30 p.m. on the second Wednesday of each month instead of 7 p.m.

* Tom Hagymasi, chairman of the Parks Board, gave a report concerning the repair and replacement of five benches and a sign at East Point and North Point parks, respectively.

* Utility Board activities were updated by Superintendent Troy Elless who noted several items of interest: A combustible-gas indicator (CGI) detector had recently been ordered and received -- the town had, until now, been borrowing one that belongs to the fire department; malfunctioning meters have been replaced at several residences; dirt dug to create the town's solar park will be used to help the town's walking trail; and many potholes have been recently repaired.

* Marshal Rodney Fenwick gave a report for the police department, citing new bullet-proof vests are needed for himself and his officers. At nearly $800 apiece, no action was taken ahead of further research into the matter. Fenwick also handed out a packet of arrests made in the month of February that showed no major offenses had occurred, save one case of battery.

* Clerk-Treasurer Monica Bray updated the board concerning the progress of the Keystone Software installation within town hall, saying representatives from the software firm installed the program on March 10 with new billing systems to begin on May 10. The software will reduce costs considerably, she said.

* The board received and denied a request via 3-0 vote to close an alleyway where Lents said late resident Bill Hickum "had a modular" and John and Tammy Watson "live down the hill."

The next town council meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. on April 12 within Bainbridge's town hall, located at 201 N. Grant Ave.

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