Watch Hill Memorial Library and Improvement Society
New Members’ Meeting
July 5, 2018

Attending: Talley Ackerman, Joan Beth Brown, Regina Burke, Susan Burke-O’Neal, Maria Canale, Devon Caraher, Stacy Clapp, Janet Connor, Lauren Corrinet, Chantal Curtis, Denise Daukas, Christine Dixon, Elizabeth Ellis, Olga Goff, Sue Gummeson, Ardis Holliday, Lisa Hayes Jankowski, Ann Snowden Johnson, Penny Kelly, Kathleen Kocatas, Jean Kopp, Joan Lemp, Margah Lips, Marianne Lynner, Vicky Martin, Heidi McWilliams, Warren Miller, Judy O’Connell, Jan Whitman Ogden, Susan Oliveria, Laura Parker, Joan Patton, Buff Penrose, Sheila Rockwell, Deborah Royce, Dinah Saglio, Vicky Saglio, Moya Saunders, Ardi Schneider, Treecie Schoonmaker, Cynthia Sculco, Donna Simmons, Noreen Sweeney, Leslie Tomenson, Stephanie Wall, Carolyn Westerfield, Barbara Whittaker, Kathy Whittemore, Christi Wood, Emily Zanios

Call to Order:  10:28AM.

Ardi Schneider welcomed everyone to the New Members’ Meeting. She waived the reading of the Minutes from the last meeting, asked for any changes, and hearing none she announced that the Minutes stand approved as presented on the website.

Treasurer’s Report:  Judy O’Connell presented the income statement:

WHMLIS Account - $270,952
Merry-Go-Round Fund - $76,893
Park Fund - $61,255

First Vice-President’s Report: Kathleen Kocatas welcomed and introduced the new members and recognized their proposers. 

Second Vice-President’s Report:  Beth Bean was absent. Ardi mentioned the newly painted trim on the library building and new stones for the driveway. 

Corresponding Secretary:  Susan Burke-O’Neal requested that information be submitted by Sunday evening for email blasts that will go out in the coming week. She will send communications on Tuesdays.  She reminded membership that the website password is Summer.  The WHMLIS website is where members can find details for all events, including Sign- up Genius for volunteer opportunities. If anyone does not receive email blast on Tuesdays, please check Spam box/ let Susan know. 

Committee Reports:

4th of July Parade: Lauren Corrinet and Emily Zanios. The chairs reported a great turnout and a fun time for all. They thanked all of the volunteers

Garden Tour:  Heidi McWilliams and Kathy Whittemore reported. Will be held July 19 and 20th. Lectures on both days at 9AM at One Bay Street and gardens open 10-4. Registration will be at One Bay Street from 9-2. Event planner David Monn will speak on the 19th about entertaining and Laura Dowling, former White House Deputy Floral Designer, will talk  on the 20th. A prix fixe lunch will be available at the Club Room at the Ocean House on both days. On Wednesday evening, July 18th, Heidi and Tom McWilliams will host a special cocktail party with renowned sculptor Ursula von Ridingsvard. Tickets are available online at WHMLIS. Please reserve in advance. 

Art Show:  Stacy Clapp and Laura Parker reported. They encouraged those interested in volunteering to  sign up on the website using Sign-up Genius. The event will be held July 29-Aug 4 in the Undercroft of the Chapel.

Summer Boutique: Donna Simmons reported that PR will begin soon and encouraged those interested in volunteering to access the website and use Sign-up Genius. The event will take place Aug 3-5 under the tent in the Village.

Children’s Programs: Lauren Corrinet described the craft projects slated for this summer. Program begins the week of July 9th. Volunteers are needed and should sign up on the WHMLIS website. Those who wish to participate are strongly encouraged to sign up in advance. Tea Party and cooking event are coming up soon. Please consult the website.

Beautification: Joan Lemp thanked profusely all 19 volunteers on the Committee. Gazebo painting will be done on Monday. Martie Walker and Susan Lloyd will consult on some redesign of the gardens surrounding the gazebo. Island work continues. Joan underscored the need for attention to the area around the Memorial Bench at the corner of Ninigret and WH Road. Three estimates have been received and will be reviewed. Work continues around the Memorial Library building. A plan for clearing the area behind/to the side of the building will be sought and considered. Three landscape architects will be consulted and invited to submit a plan. Joan encouraged homeowners to eliminate the weeds that are sprouting in and around the sidewalks and curbing around town.

Story Hour: Vicky Saglio reminded the membership that this takes place every Wednesday at 9:15AM. The target audience is nursery school through kindergarten ages.

Oral History Project: Olga Goff had nothing to report.

Lighthouse/Conservancy Event: Heidi McWilliams reminded membership of upcoming event on Saturday, July 7th on the lawn at the Lighthouse. Parking is very limited. Parking assignments will be provided in the coming days. The event is sold out but a waitlist is being compiled. 

East Beach Association: No report was given.

Library: Ardi's Holliday reported that the Library opened for the summer on Monday, July 2nd.  Also, she announced that the Westerly Public Library is holding a book sale this month. 

Lighthouse Keepers Association: Chantal Curtis circulated a volunteer sign up sheet.

Merry-Go-Round: Sue Gummeson reported that there were 1119 inside riders and 7461 outside riders thus far this summer.

Watch Hill Chapel: No report was given.

Park Restoration:  Joan Beth reported that there was a delay with the spring clean-up but that things are looking great now.

New Business:

Garden Tour Parking: Sheila Rockwell announced that parking will be available on Everett Avenue for volunteers, but they must obtain a parking pass/signage for vehicle. She thanked all of those who have volunteered for the event and is seeking three additional helpers each of the two days. 

Joan Lemp spoke about the need for beautification in the area surrounding the Merry-Go-Round. She emphasized the historic nature of the site and suggested that we turn our attention to improving that area. She also mentioned the unsightliness of the racks of clothing displayed outdoors and on the sidewalks in front of some of the merchants in the Village. A discussion ensued about how we might promote a “tidying up” of this situation. Carolyn Westerfield mentioned that there may be town regulations that exist about keeping sidewalks clear, and that therefore the Fire District should be able to assist us in this effort. It was suggested that the WHMLIS, the Parks Commission, the WH Conservancy, and the WHFD should write a joint letter to the shop owners/landlords.

Penny Kelly announced that there will be a presentation on the 1938 Hurricane at One Bay Street Center on Saturday, August 25th. An expert will speak about New England hurricanes and the catastrophic event of 1938. Some Watch Hill residents will talk about their personal family recollections. The event will begin at 5PM.

Adjournment:  Ardi adjourned the meeting at 11:14AM.

Respectfully submitted,
Kathy Whittemore
Recording Secretary