- President Report – June 2018 (5/31/2018)Now that June is upon us, the epi-center of Blue Ridge for many of us becomes the pool and tennis programs and activities. So, in this month’s column I am going to address some things in this area.Tennis Anyone?While the pool with swim lessons, swim team and weekend poolside lounging often takes the primary focus of the summer season, our tennis programs have been growing too. This growth can be attributed to the strategic shift in how we operate tennis initiated by our former Pool and Tennis Chair, Jenny Fredericks, and from the dedicated volunteer efforts of neighbors such as Jamie Smith.Three years ago, after getting feedback from the community on how to improve the Blue Ridge tennis programs, we sought to develop a program that would accomplish the following:
The conclusion was made that the best way to accomplish the goals above was to contract with a more professional organization. So we entered in to an arrangement with Tennis Center Sandpoint (TCSP). In the last two years, these initial goals have been met. More people than ever are playing tennis and our kids are enjoying a more robust level of play. We have heard testimonials from many that say that TCSP has inspired a new or latent interest in tennis.There have been a few issues with outsourcing aspects of the tennis program that we are attempting to solve this year. First, administration became more cumbersome and costly to reconcile sign-ups and payments. And second, we heard very strongly expressed concerns with the lack of availability of courts and the perception that court time was being used too frequently by non-members taking private lessons with TCSP instructors.To reduce administrative hassle and costs, we have migrated operations over to their systems while still maintaining control over pricing, program offerings and usage of our courts. With guarantees to maintain court availability for Blue Ridge members, there should be more limits on private lessons given to outsiders. With their system, members now have the ability to reserve courts which should help with court availability and allow us to review usage.You may have noticed that we have invested in tennis in other ways too. The courts have been resurfaced and the sheds and surrounding equipment spiffed up (Thank you Lloyd Low). We are making every effort to ensure that Blue Ridge member tennis players have access to our courts when they want it. But with increased demand, there will be more conflicts. And with this system migration, there will also be hiccups, so please be patient. We are really trying to meet a variety of needs with our tennis programs.Pickle-ball Anyone?So it seems that there is a growing interest in Pickle Ball and we’ve heard from many members that they want Blue Ridge to have it. Apparently this is a trend. Many clubs and parks are lining tennis courts or other areas with pickle-ball boundaries. Who knew? Well I guess a lot of people other than me.We will investigate our options. Initially there was the thought that we could introduce the pickle ball lines when we resurfaced the tennis courts but that felt premature without understanding the full implications. Another idea is to use the basketball court down at Woodbine. There are issues with that too.If you have interest or ideas about pickle ball in Blue Ridge, contact Brooke Walker, Pool and Tennis Chair at: email@example.com.Here’s to enjoying summer in Blue Ridge. Hope to see you around and about!
- Elevate the caliber of instruction for kids and adults
- Create the opportunity to have a more cohesive tennis team for our kids
- Offer a variety of programs to increase the number of people playing tennis
- Association Manager Report – June 2018 (5/31/2018)In the business office, the summer months mean it’s time for the Annual Audit and Reserve Study. While the audit looks at the past year and the Reserve Study at the coming year, both are important tools necessary for budget season.Annual AuditLike many homeowner associations, Blue Ridge contracts with an independent auditing firm to review the prior year’s financial procedures and processes. Noted in the Audit Report are exceptions and recommendations to better protect homeowners money and comply with IRS and accounting standards.Reserve StudyA Reservist compiles a list of every asset component, its value, useful life, and remaining useful life over the next 30 years. The numbers are crunched to determine how much we’d have to save each year to afford scheduled replacements. Each year, we review the component list, make adjustments based on recent projects or findings, and the numbers are crunched again. It’s a tedious process, but critical to avoiding unplanned failures and special assessments.Both the Audit Report and Reserve Study are available for review by homeowners and prospective buyers. Not exactly great beach books, but if you love spreadsheets and balance sheets, they could be the read for you!
- Architecture Report – June 2018 (5/31/2018)In May the Board:10234 Belgrove Ct NW, Zhang/Nix – rejected second story additionIn June the Board:Initial Presentations:10515 12th Ave NW Agerton – addition off back of house10308 15th Ave NW Featherstone – single story addition off back, replace garage and add an addition on top10234 Belgrove Ct NW Zhang/Nix – second story addition
- Security Report – June 2018 (5/31/2018)Hi Neighbors,Another month has gone by and it’s great to hear that things have been quiet. There has been some car prowling, so please keep you cars locked and tell your visitors to do the same. Also, with summer comes vacations so please talk with your neighbors as they can provide a great set of eyes to watch the neighborhood.Lastly, our traffic committee has a very quick questionnaire for the BR community. Please take a few minutes to complete it as it will help them to better understand what is important to our community and where they should focus their time.BR Traffic SurveyThanksEric Souder
- Pool and Tennis Programs – June 2018 (5/31/2018)Summer is in full swing at the Clubhouse. I love hearing the many voices enjoying the pool and tennis courts. I especially love listening to the swim team practice. And despite the increased traffic, I always appreciate seeing so many neighbors when swim & tennis lessons begin!As we get into the summer routine, a few reminders:
As you have already heard, our new system allows for tennis court reservations. Instructions for reserving a court are posted to our website and included below for reference. Court rental is only for Blue Ridge Community Plus Members.
- Adult Lap Swimmers – YOU MUST leave the area no later than 7:30am. Simply getting out of the pool by 7:30am and heading to the locker room is not acceptable. Our lifeguards need to get to school on time!!
- Please drive VERY slowly along 15th Ave NW as kids are beginning to run across the street very frequently.
- Cars may not park on both sides of Greenbrier Way as this prevents an emergency vehicle from going down the street. This is especially relevant during swim meets.
- Do not block the fire hydrant at the corner of 15th Ave NW and Greenbrier Way.
Important Swim & Tennis Dates:June 13th – Weekly Swim Lesson Sessions BeginJune 18th – Junior Tennis Summer Weekly Sessions BeginJune 26th – Swim Team Pancake Breakfast – 9:00amJune 26th – Home Swim MeetJuly 4th – BR Social Tennis TournamentJuly 10th – Home Swim MeetJuly 17th – Home Swim MeetJuly 24th – Home Swim MeetAug 2nd – Northerns Swim Meet – No Tennis or Swim Lessons
- Register yourself/family in the new Club Automation system. http://brst.clubautomation.com.
- Once registered you will notice an icon on the left side that says RESERVE A COURT. If that icon is not available you will need to contact Monica Blum at 206- 527-5726.
- Click on the calendar on the top right to select your date, time, court and click SAVE RESERVATION. Please be respectful to other neighbors and only book a court a week in advance and cancel if you are unable to use it.
- Members are always welcome to use a vacant court; however priority will be given to those who reserve a court online during that same time period.
- Pool News – June 2018 (5/31/2018)Hello Blue Ridge!Pool season is in full swing and we’ve loved seeing so many familiar faces back up at the pool since opening day! Session 1 for Swim Lessons starts June 13 as a prorated 3-day session so make sure you register soon to reserve a spot. Registration for Session 4 opens June 11 for CM + members and June 20 for non-members. Swim team practices will be switching to AM practice times starting June 25, and the schedule for open swim will also change starting this day. Check the pool website for more info about the schedule. Keep an eye out for a monthly calendar that will be posted in the clubhouse at the beginning of June for more specific schedule changes including swim meets, water polo matches, holidays, and more! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions!
- Events Report – June 2018 (5/31/2018)July wouldn’t be complete without our annual 4th of July Parade and Picnic! Amanda and Ryan O’Rouke are planning our signature event and are looking for a number of people to assist them in their endeavors. If you haven’t done so already, please head to their sign up genius site to help make this event a success! https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20F044EABAE23AAFB6-blueThere are a ton of different ways you can volunteer and if you’re a student looking for community service hours, this is a fantastic way for you get some hours!For those of you who are new to the community, this annual tradition will begin promptly at 11:00 am up at the clubhouse where our community Grand Marshal will lead the parade of neighbors down to the Woodbine Park for hot dogs, games, and all around community fun! Be sure to decorate your cars, bikes, scooters, skateboards and even yourselves when you come to the clubhouse to join the parade. Want to just watch? The parade will meander down from the clubhouse along Valmay headed to the Woodbine park. Grab a curbside seat, wave to the parade, and then come down and join in on the picnic fun! Of course once the picnic concludes, come back up to the pool and join in for the one day of the year where inflatable toys and floaties are allowed in the pool and have a FUN time in the water!If you have any questions, be sure to email Amanda or Ryan.Also this July 4th there will be a fun and lighthearted Tennis Tournament at 3pm! Thank you Michele Osbourne for planning this event!And although summer is just beginning, it’s never to early to begin planning future Blue Ridge events. If you would like to volunteer to organize the Halloween party or other event, please contact me!
- July 4th – 4th of July Parade and Picnic
- September 28th – Oktoberfest
- October 31st – Halloween Party
- December 2nd – Holiday Open House
- Water Polo – Thor Tyson – June 2018 (5/31/2018)Your local recreational water polo team is open to boys and girls, age six and up and to Blue Ridge residents and non-residents alike. This year, we have a lightning fast season that begins in late July and wraps up just prior to Labor Day. We welcome everyone – beginners, veteran players, those here for the whole season and even those who travel much of August. Very relaxed, great fun – a wonderful way to close out summer.
- Pacesetters – Barb Loners – June 2018 (5/31/2018)Time For Summer and an Outdoor Meeting (Weather Permitting) Next Pacesetters Meeting, Wednesday, June 20Topic of Meeting:The program will be an evening of shared stories, each 5-7 minutes long, about the experiences of neighbors. One of the stories will be about Milt and Metta’s trip to Jackson, Mississippi last fall to work with civil rights leader John Perkins. Please let Barb Loners (email@example.com) or Milt and Metta Smith (Metta.firstname.lastname@example.org) know if you have an experience you would like to share. We look forward to hearing from you.Milt and Metta have reserved the cabana at the beach for the evening. If we are blessed with a beautiful and warm evening, we will hold the meeting there. Otherwise, we will meet at the clubhouse as usual. Final location will be determined as we get closer to the time of the meeting.The evening agenda:6:00-6:30 Socializing6:30-7:15 Potluck Dinner7:15 Announcements7:20+/-8:00 Shared Storie
- President Report – May 2018 (5/31/2018)Happy May Day! Feliz Cinco de Mayo. April Showers bring May flowers. Mother May I? Well, that is all that I can think of for a string o f references involving May. So here is my May columnIt Takes a Village!Another Annual Work Party is in the books. This is one of my favorite Blue Ridge events. It is a real chance to meet some people you may not know and work beside your neighbors to make a real impact on the parks and community facilities that we all own and share.There were work activities in all three major spaces: The Beach Park, Woodbine Park and the Club House/Pool area. There were a range of tasks involved: planting, digging, hauling, sanding, painting and serving a delicious lunch afterwards. And more than 50 people of all ages showed up to help. With ambitious plans, not everything got completed but there is a sense of accomplishment when you can see the results of something you personally did.We need to thank Steve Brunette , our Grounds and Facilities Chair and Michelle Morgan, our Association Manager for organizing and getting everything in place for the day. Check-out Steve’s column for some well-deserved kudos to some individuals who took the lead on various projects. And thank you to all that participated!If you were unable to join us, you can still contribute $25 to help defer some additional costs to finish up the work.It Takes a Committee!In my effort to keep everyone informed on the association’s planning efforts, here is an update on the Long Range Planning Committee (LRPC). The committee had its first meeting of the year with some new members. The committee is chaired by Andrea Durbin , Treasurer and includes myself (ex officio) and Steve Brunette from the Board as well as community members; Jane Caron, Marilyn Ernst, Josh Findley and Tony Perucca .After identifying a process and establishing the groundwork in its first year of operation, the primary objective of the committee is to annually review our reserve study and update the list and cost of capital projects for the next 3-5 years. This then feeds in to the annual budget to determine our yearly reserve contribution and work requirements.Special Project for 2018/2019. The committee will examine our dues structure to make a recommendation on whether or not to migrate to a single set of dues where all residents would have access to the pool and tennis facilities. The primary reasons to consider this change are that Blue Ridge would save administration costs and that it would more equitably spread the costs of maintaining our facilities across all residents. Our set-up is also unique in the HOA world. The committee will estimate those costs and identify ways to improve administration. With a little less than half of Blue Ridge residents electing not to be CM+ members, the committee will also explore the demographics and rationale for that choice. The committee will get community feedback through surveys and possibly “town meetings” if there are compelling reasons to go forward. This effort may take a while with a goal of making a recommendation by September 2019.It Takes a Swimming Pool and some sun!May also brings on the opening of the pool (May 12th) and the launch of swim team. It is the time when we start seeing each other out and about more, both at the pool and at our parks. Kids have grown since last year. Some of us have hair that is a bit greyer. It’s all good! Hope to see you around!