Charlestown Township Parks & Recreation Board
Great Valley High School
Thursday, August 15, 2019


Parks and Recreation:
Chris Lawrence, Chairperson, Frank Beyer, and Dan Mount. Brian Schlorff, Bil Longua, and Jim Quay were absent.
Additional Visitors and Volunteers:
Charles Buck, Alix Coleman, Robert Findlay, Keith Maurer, and Ben James and Tim Leary from the Great Valley Mountain Bike Team.


The next meeting will be in the Great Valley Middle School Choral Room #154.

Minutes for Approval

The July minutes were approved with comments. Mr. Leary and Mr. James responded to the July minutes. See August comments of July approved minutes by Mr. Leary in italic parenthesis below:

Original note: ”The club is growing and appears to have about 50 members with 3 coaches.” The following items were brought to P&R’s attention. (Corrected: There are 60 bikers signed up, but about half show for practice, and 20 coaches).

Original note (corrected note)

  1. Cars are parking across the street in a development since the lot is full. (That has never happened, it is never that full. A coach and biker live across the street, perhaps when they crossed the road it appeared they had parked instead).
  2. The club was asked to not use every parking spot, but sometimes there is no parking available. They are also parking in the cart trail. Alix said that although only standing by their bikes, do not move for cars.
  3. The crowds have been there every day this week. (There was one week where the new bikers were there every night. A schedule will be posted in the kiosk for safety reasons moving forward.)
  4. Alix called Mrs. Csete about the club’s insurance since it has grown so much. (The certificate is available at the Township Office.)
  5. Per Alix, they are now using the macadam too. They have a trail in the picnic grove then added the new trail in the woods, which is much more extensive than discussed. (Macadam is not being used during practice. When the bikers ride before or after practice hours the coaches cannot be held responsible; we will add rules to the kiosk to encourage proper usage at all times. The Board approved all trail changes.)
  6. Etiquette and safety rules will be re-established for walkers and people with retractable leashes (these leashes allow dogs to run out in front of bikes). (Bikers will be reminded to go to the right for walkers.)
  7. Bikers should leave the trail for walkers to continue. Mr. Findlay said he has not seen bikes on the paved path.

Old Business

New Business


Johnson and Johnson employees were at the Pickering Trail and Ice Dam Trail to haul stone and Geotech fabric. Mr. Quay and Ms. Smith worked with other P&R volunteers, and Mr. Beyer trimmed areas in preparation. Work was done in an area where stone can only be carried in and dumped, and wooden raised platforms were built over wet areas. No heavy equipment can be used on the Pickering and McDevitt trails.

Mr. Lawrence reminded the group that Mrs. Csete is researching work crew availability or other groups interested in doing community service. Mr. Beyer said the landscaper isn’t mowing the trails often enough so he contacted them. More workdays will be scheduled in September and October.

Mr. Findlay and Members discussed the problem with invasives and the lack of volunteers. Mr. Findlay suggested finding mechanical means or contracting trail cleanup since the trails are being taken over, especially by the Mile-a-Minute Vine.

Mr. Beyer asked the attendees to please walk all the trails. He warned that the Thompson Trail is not connected, and the Horse-Shoe Trail is not maintained by Charlestown, it simply goes through the Township. It is maintained by the Horse-Shoe Trail Conservancy, headed by Ms. Ingrid Cantarella-Fox, President.

Charlestown Day 2019

  1. The next Charlestown Day is on September 14.
  2. The planner for the 5K is Ms. McKinley Fox from GoFox Events. The route will go around the perimeter of the Park and University (written approval obtained). The sign-up time will be 7 a.m. and the run will start at 8 a.m. to give plenty of time for the soccer club to get into the parking lot at 9.
  3. Mr. Lawrence needs to follow up with the ice cream vendor.
  4. Mr. Lawrence will set up a Great Valley Mountain Bike display since they have an away race. (note: this was not completed in time)
  5. Mr. Lawrence will coordinate the Universities’ Sports Management students.
  6. Mr. Lawrence will put out the last vendor blast for those that said they were interested but haven’t signed up.
  7. Mr. Lawrence will contact Mr. Kuhn about the pavilion dedication.
  8. Mr. Mount will contact Mr. Schlorff.
  9. Mr. Findlay is checking to see if the Audubon Society is still planning on being there.
  10. The EAC wants their table next to the Audubon Society.
  11. The EAC and Brightside Gardens need to turn in their registration forms.
  12. A band has still not been finalized. Mr. Buck is getting a contact for Mr. Lawrence.
  13. A company is being hired to clean the restrooms after the day.
  14. The French and Pickering Creeks Conservation Trust is the beneficiary this year.

PASC and PMYC Report

Mr. Maurer stated:

  1. The landscaper was not mowing correctly and he had to contact him.
  2. He is in favor of the clubhouse swap idea.
  3. Thank you for removing the very large branch that was a hazard.
  4. Mr. Maurer requested one of the trash cans from the shed be placed near the stream.

Mr. Maurer had talked with Ms. Julia Patton, Director of Operations at the University. His club had offered to restripe the parking lot, clean up trash around the dumpster, and tried to re-establish a working relationship with the University so that they can use that area of the parking lot. Currently, it is locked up, and weeds have begun to grow and are unsightly. He is hoping to re-establish this relationship by watching over the area for the University, especially since it looked better before they denied the club access. Mr. Lawrence suggested the area be added to the Earth Day schedule, continue to take care of any dumping, and he will begin including Ms. Patton in his emails.

The only item for PMYC is the need to get rid of the weeds near the clubhouse.

Stone is being delivered for trash can pads, drains, and erosion problem.

Brightside Farm Park

Dogs run out in front of bikes, sometimes dogs aren’t on a leash, or walkers are not looking up from cell phones, so the Members discussed all the precautions that are being taken to prevent injuries in this Township Park. Mr. Lawrence will ask Mrs. Csete to include some of the items below on the website since the next newsletter isn’t due until October, which is too late. Mr. Beyer asked the bike club to reach out to him, he would like to see the trails and learn how they were established.

Mulch is being ordered for the benches, six trees, and the kiosk area, from Charlestown Landscaping. Alix Coleman asked for undyed mulch since the black is toxic. There is a bench being dedicated for Supervisor Rodgers, Mr. Lawrence will keep Alix informed.

Franchise Agreement

The PASC and the PMYC have franchise agreements with the Township that give it first right to fields, but the bike club only has a verbal agreement. There needs to be a written agreement for the bike club. Mr. Lawrence is using the same template that is used for the other sports clubs. But, to do this, biking rules on Township property need to be changed since the current speed is 7 mph, too slow for the bikes. Mr. Lawrence will forward a new agreement to Mr. Leary to review, it won’t change the rules of operation but will provide for a variance for a 15-mph speed limit. Alix will also receive this information.

EAC Report

Mr. Findlay said he felt as though Charlestown is a step ahead when looking at creating pollinator sites. He distributed information on Project Wingspan. It is a 2-year project supported by a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Federation to the non-profit Pollinator Partnership. There will be funding needed for (1) creating pollinator sites for the monarch and Rusty Patched Bumble Bee and (2) maintenance for sites at a later date. He stated there are good spots in Charlestown Park, and will also contact the Historical Society. The project will send surveyors to a spot the Township would choose to verify its suitability. Members continued to discuss possible locations, pulling weeds, and spreading wildflower seeds.

The Chester County Clean Energy Tour is on Saturday, October 19th.

Mr. Findlay said a recent volunteer to the EAC was a former I.T. consultant and he was hoping to get the “push app” idea going.

Mr. Lawrence and Mr. Findlay discussed the problem of getting volunteers into action, Corporate Social Responsibility Reports, and changing demographics in the Township.

Mr. Lawrence said he will take care of the URL for Great Valley Nature Center in case it is needed in the future. Mr. Findlay will check and get back to him.

Other Items

Mr. Lawrence will check with Mr. Wright about the silt socks at Brightside Farm. Alix wants Charlestown Landscaping is to check for wires around the silt socks.

Alix bought a Giant Fly Trap to show what can be used against the Lanternfly. Unfortunately, it also catches birds and butterflies unless it is caged with wire. There is an infestation at the Brightside Farm Gardens. Organic methods were discussed, but Mr. Buck fears that gardeners will be tempted to bring non-organic remedies in to try and combat the pests. He will be posting viable options on the fence for gardeners.


Adjourned at 9:00 p.m.