Some new games boards — and adorable playing pieces — are coming to the La Jolla Rec Center, courtesy of a local Girls Scout troop and the National Charity League Seaside Chapter, following a unanimous vote of approval, Jan. 24 at the La Jolla Park & Recreation, Inc. (LJP&R) board meeting.
Troop 4353 Brownies Allison Wittkow, Camille and Celeste Peters, and Kaleigh Whang, along with NCL Seaside members Ahna and Natalie Wittkow, asked the board if they could paint two checker/chess boards onto one of the cement tables between the playground and the tennis courts, and Go! and backgammon boards on another table in that same area.
Parent Laura DuCharme Conboy explained that the troops would like to provide the labor, materials and financing as a service project. “The Brownie Troop voted to use some of their cookie sale money for materials,” she said. (Fair warning, cookie sales started Jan. 28, and Scouts may be knocking on your door.)
“They want to provide pieces that would be checked out like other equipment. For games like Go! or Checkers, they would paint flat stones in contrasting colors, or with a color or design on one side and a different (color or design) on the other. One idea is ladybugs on one side and bumblebees on the other. The Backgammon set would be a combination of purchased and handmade pieces. They would do a couple of sets for the checker pieces, and purchase a couple sets of chess pieces,” Conboy said.
Upon hearing that a set of purchased would be about $25, trustee Bill Robbins “donated” $25 to the Girl Scouts, and Mary Coakley Munk followed with another $50.
The Scouts plan to purchase pieces from a site that provides items for tournament play, and offers to replace missing pieces. The project would be carried out in the next few months, school schedules permitting.
In other LJP&R news:
Bocce ball update: Coakley Munk said the planned bocce ball court installation needs to be reviewed by the San Diego Historical Resources board, given the historicity of the Rec Center, “to see if they have any issues with it. If all goes well, they will go to the San Diego Park & Rec board in February and, hopefully, it will be approved and move forward.” The court installation was approved in September 2017, and would be funded (up to $7,000) by LJP&R. The court was requested by a group of residents who often travel to Little Italy to play the game.
Shade structures: At the end of last year, LJP&R voted to purchase shade structures (not to exceed $21,000) partially funded by the board’s 501(c)3 account and partially by City funds. To make sure they were getting the best price, board members Alexis McCandless and Jill Peters said they met with representatives from different shade companies for cost estimates. But, according to McCandless, the estimates were well above what the board could spend. “It was a good comparison (to what we originally looked at) and the original idea will be more cost effective,” she said.
However, it has since come to light that the City will not sign off on attaching a shade structure to an existing structure, and the shades would need to be affixed to their own posts, which may add to the cost. More information will be presented at the next meeting.
Playground committee set: Coakley Munk, hoping to keep the ball rolling on the board’s planned playground renovation project, appointed a Playground Vision Committee, to be co-chaired by McCandless and Peters. “We need to keep moving along on this,” she said. The board has been mulling how to renovate the playground since late 2016, but has yet to vote on a particular direction.
The ad-hoc committee would be open to public participation, and those interested do not have to be LJP&R members to participate. Meeting dates and times will be published as they are announced.
Basketball court: In a two-step repair project, the La Jolla Rec Center basketball courts will be patched in the next few months and completely resurfaced by June. Park & Recreation area manager Tyler Canales said he ordered the patch for the courts so the cracks in the surface can be repaired. The full resurfacing is in the budget for Fiscal Year 2018, which ends June 30, so it has to be completed by then. After the resurfacing, the courts will be re-striped for basketball and pickle-ball.
— La Jolla Park & Recreation, Inc. next meets 5 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 28 at the Rec Center, 615 Prospect St. (858) 552-1658. reviveljrc.org or ReviveLJRC@gmail.com