News from the San Carlos Recreation Council – Aug. 21

by John Pilch

The major action item on the Sept. 16 San Carlos/Lake Murray Recreation Council agenda will be an application by T-Mobile for a Conditional Use Permit to install “two new 70-foot-tall light standards, supporting antennas, and an above-ground equipment enclosure and park equipment storage room.” If you’re interested in hearing more about this proposal, please plan to attend the meeting at 6:30 p.m. in the Navajo room at the San Carlos Recreation Center, 6445 Lake Badin Ave. We want to hear from the public, especially nearby residents, about the project and ask that you bring your questions and comments for the Recreation Council members to consider prior to a vote to recommend approval or denial of the project.

An update on the proposed joint-use agreement to install artificial turf on the dirt field at Gage Elementary School on Bisby Lake Avenue: Recall that the Recreation Council voted unanimously in favor of the project, with the chair abstaining but in favor of the project. The Recreation Council made the following recommendations to the city’s Park & Recreation Board for consideration at their June 18 meeting: 1) the surface should be the modern type of artificial turf; 2) no lights are to be placed in or around the field area; 3) access gates are to be locked at dusk, especially on weekends; 4) the track around the fields should be 10 feet wide rather than 5 feet; 5) an extra hour before and after school should be added for the school’s use for students; 6) some type of noise reduction should be installed around the site; 7) signage should indicate that “no pets are allowed on the field”; and 8) both ramps to the field site should remain open, rather than just one from Hudson Drive. This item was continued by the city’s Park & Recreation Board at their June 18 meeting and was scheduled to be heard as an action item at their July 16 meeting. Unfortunately, that meeting was cancelled, so the item will hopefully be heard at the board’s September meeting. We hope to attend to reinforce the recommendations we made.

Registration for Fall programs (September through November), including the volleyball and flag football leagues, will open at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 22. Programs and leagues can fill up quickly, so we encourage patrons to register on time to ensure participation.

The City Council and Mayor have approved the fee schedule for Fiscal Year 2016. You can see the final fee schedule at The new fees are effective Sept. 8. Any permit or registration finalized in ActiveNet on or after Sept. 8 will be charged the new fees.

With respect to the drought, watering has been reduced at all city parks. Deputy Director Kathy Ruiz has stated that her target is a 25 percent reduction of water use, which is higher than the 16 percent reduction requested by Mayor Kevin Faulconer. We’ve been asked to remind all sports field users that watering is not allowed between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. as ordered by the mayor and City Council. That includes watering the fields between games during the day. Violators may jeopardize their permits to use the fields. Please help to conserve water and abide by this mandate, not only at sports fields but everywhere.

One final item deals with the Lake Murray Community Park, especially the area near the playground. As was previously reported, the new shade structure on the south side of the playground has been installed, with thanks to Councilmember Scott Sherman and his San Carlos representative, Ryley Webb. It covers the existing Americans With Disabilities Act-compliant picnic table. We’re pleased to report that another double ADA-compliant picnic table was installed in June. The Recreation Council made this purchase with funds donated by the Lake Murray Playground Project (LMPP) Committee to enhance the area adjacent to the playground and to allow for more picnics to occur under the shade structure. We hope you enjoy the shade structure, the tables and the playground, which is almost three years old and still looking great. The equipment gets a lot of use, which is terrific and the reason it was installed – for the community and our neighbors. By the way, we’re working with the city and the LMPP folks to resolve the problem with the grout in the sidewalk pavers.

That’s it. We hope you enjoy visiting the San Carlos Park and Recreation Center and the other parks in our community and take advantage of the available programs. If you have questions or need more information, please contact the Rec Center at 619-527-3443. Kristy and her staff will be happy to assist. The San Carlos/Lake Murray Recreation Council meets on the third Wednesday of odd-numbered months at 6:30 p.m. at the San Carlos Recreation Center.

—John F. Pilch is chair of the San Carlos/Lake Murray Recreation Council. Write to him at

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