Group floats Parks and Rec idea

From left, are Leadership Program members Matt Rippee, Linda Eytchison, Carol Watts, Amy Willett and Doris Woempner. (Not pictured, Melinda Artz.)

Participants in the Wallowa County Chamber of Commerce's Leadership Program have chosen to focus on a new Parks and Recreation District to build a new community swimming pool.

Now in it's seventh year, the Leadership Program is open to local residents who are interested in taking a leadership class and working on some project to benefit the community. Sixty-five people have graduated from the program so far.

This year's class has a vision for a year-round pool with exercise rooms. They'd like to see healthy physical programs, exercise opportunities in the winter months and a place for socializing.

The class proposes establishing a Parks and Recreation District in Wallowa County to achieve its goal, also proposing financing the facility through user fees, grants and sponsorships.

"The number one thing we want to find out is if people are for Parks and Rec," said participant Carol Watts.

The group is asking residents to complete a survey, which will be mailed out along with an informational brochure. Those who turn in a completed survey will receive a coupon for a free trip to the dump at Ant Flat.

"We think it's a good project and we think doing a survey is a good way to see whether the community would support it," said participant Amy Willet.

Past leadership groups have held a free dump day, brought legislators out to discuss natural resources; promoted the Wallowa County Museum, the railroad and the Wallowa Valley Family and Youth Center; and helped put in a new kitchen at Cloverleaf Hall.

To learn more about the Leadership Program call Vicki Rosgen at the chamber at 426-4622.

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