Parks and Rec updates City Council on pools, parks


November 20, 2018

Havre Daily News/Ryan Berry

A large limb is missing from a tree at Pepin Park Monday. An October 2017 snowstorm decimated many of the trees around Havre, causing branches to snap and requiring a massive cleanup effort.

Havre Parks and Recreation Director Chris Inman told Havre City Council during its meeting Monday that her department has planted 37 new trees in Havre to recover from damage caused by the October 2017 blizzard that hit the city.

Inman's update for the department's activities over the past year was the only agenda item for City Council's meeting Monday.

She said that last year's storm brought down approximately 100 trees in the community in various locations, and replacing all of those trees is an ongoing project in the department.

This morning, Inman said the department has planted 12 new trees in Pepin Park, eight in Optimist Park, four in Hidden Valley Park, two in Elks Park, two in Rotary Park, three on Ninth Street, one at the Slowpitch Softball Complex and one at the Sixth Avenue Memorial Field.

She added that the trees that are being planted are not ash but rather bur oaks, maple, Canadian reds, little-leaf lindens and a few other varieties.

Inman told the council that the department has also applied for a grant through the Arbor Day Foundation. This grant, she said, would allow the department to plant at least 60 more trees. Without this grant the department could only plant 30, she added.

Inman said that replacing trees around Havre will be an ongoing project. Many trees around town are dying and rotting from the inside out, she said. These trees will also need to be replaced over time.

Mayor Tim Solomon said the grant is usually awarded in the beginning of the year.

Council President Terry Lilletvedt said people can contribute to the efforts to replace these trees by making contributions to the Parks and Recreation Department.

Inman said the department has a specific account, the Havre Area Recreation and Parks Account, that people or organizations can donate to for tree planting. People interested in making donations should stop in at Havre City Hall and make their donations to the HARP account.

She added that the donations are also tax deductible.

The department is also in the process of repainting signs, repairing shrub beds and replacing memorial plaques, Inman said.

"Just fancying up the parks a little bit," she said.

The department also helped Havre Public Works with trimming trees on some of the avenues and boulevards until the parks department's truck broke down, she said.

She added that the department also plans to rezone Patterson Park and the area near the water plant, upgrade the sprinkler systems in the parks and upgrade the bathrooms, she said. She added that she would present the plans to the council in more detail at a future meeting.

The department has also done work on the public pool in the past year, she said, including upgrading its electrical system.

When the pool was built, all of the electrical work was installed underground, and this system rusted out over the years, Inman said.

She added that another improvement made was installing a new pool pump.

Inman said she encourages everyone to go to the pool.

"It's pretty cool," she said.

Lilletvedt said the pool looks fantastic and the two swimming nights for kids that the pool organized were well received.

Local kids working at the pool, Inman said, spent time repainting the facility and creating artwork for the pool. She added that the artwork was done completely freehand with no stencils.

"We have talented kids over there," she said.


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