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Recreation district raises funds

Coach says he hopes for more facilities, communication
By: Bridget Jones, Journal Staff Writer
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With an upcoming election for two of its board of directors seats, the Auburn Area Recreation and Parks District could see some change in the future. Four candidates are running for the two seats. They include two incumbents and two newcomers. District Administrator Kahl Muscott said that because of local, state and federal budget issues, ARD is now facing its own financial woes. “One challenge we are going to have ahead of us … is we are having some challenging times coming up economically,” Muscott said. Muscott said the district’s current budget is $4 million and it used to be closer to $4.5 million. This includes money for capital improvement projects, which bring new features and enhancements to facilities. An example of a capital improvement is the new trail going in around the perimeter of Recreation Park. Muscott said the district is looking at grants for future fundraising. It also has a calendar featuring local men coming out that it hopes to make $6,000-$8,000 from. It also sells informational and recipe books on healthy eating. At the Gold Country Fair, the district shared information about the recent fire that partially destroyed the playground equipment at Recreation Park, Muscott said. “We actually got some donations,” he said. “We did get a donation of $500.” The district has also added a new program, Muscott said. “We just opened a preschool over at Recreation Park that has actually really taken off for something that just opened,” he said. Muscott declined to say Tuesday what goals ARD staff are hoping the board will focus on once the election has passed. “What staff is here to do is implement whatever (board members’) goals and direction are,” he said. Tony Madrigal, who coaches Auburn Little League, said Thursday he likes ARD overall, but has hopes for the post-election district. “I think the one thing that is kind of important to me as a baseball coach is maybe having additional (fields) to use,” Madrigal said. “I know land is hard to come by in Auburn. That seems to be the biggest deal is how we can share the facilities across the board?” Madrigal said he understands ARD has to keep a lot of different user groups happy, but he hopes for a smoother flow of information between the district and the league about the goals of each. “There is pretty good communication, but I think it could be improved upon,” he said. Reach Bridget Jones at bridgetj@goldcountrymedia.com