Sunday, May 18, 2008

Reeves Park Damage

The heavy rains during several days, including last night, left the ground in our area saturated.

The weight of Dogwood Fair rides created multiple problems during the removal of the equipment, and left numerous ruts and damage throughout Reeves Park.

I spoke briefly with Katie Ciruelos, of the Jaycees this morning and she stated the organization will work hard to restore the park.

In other rain-free years in the past, a virtual army of volunteers, Jaycees and others, would gather at one end of the park and walk to the other collecting debris and fixing any problems, leaving the park in pristine condition. The current situation, however, is daunting.

Every year the good people of Jaycees work hard to provide this much enjoyed, week-long entertainment for Phoenixville. The proceeds from the months of work benefit our community in many different areas.

Perhaps this year is the year community volunteers can help our Jaycee organization.

If you have some available time, and the driving spirit to volunteer, please approach any Jaycee and ask what you can do to help.

It's time we help the Jaycees.


Mr. Ellsworth Toohey said...

Where exactly does the proceeds from this event go? I am often puzzled by the actions of the Jaycees in that it seems they always ask for money. I would imagine an event of this size would bring in a lot of money. I wish some of the money would go into the upkeep of Reeves park. It is a true gem.

PS It's kind of tough volunteering to help out a group fronted by Mr. Wagner and Mr. DiGirolomo. I just can't help those two jokers out. Sorry

Karen said...

Mr. Toohey, the Jaycee organization's website is:

There you will find the various projects this organization funds during the year.

The projects include the Chrismas Shopping tour for children, Thanksgiving meals for area families, the Easter Egg Hunt, the live Nativity at Christmas, and the community clock located in Reeves Park. Their helping hand probably extends to many other areas as well.

I understand your right to your opinions of individuals, but the Jaycee organization has a long history of benefit to our community.

May I suggest that you consider tempering your view in the following way?

Not all of us support the wars in Iraq and Afganistan. However, I doubt that there is anyone who doesn't support our American troops and those from other countries in service in the quest for world stability and peace.

Please don't overlook the fact that the Jaycees organization deserves our respect and support for all the good they do.

Karen said...

I have been asked to provide contact information for the Jaycees.

If you would like to volunteer, please call the Jaycees at 610-935-7910 and leave your message.

Katie Ciruelos, the Dogwood President, has her email address listed on the Jaycee website.

She can be reached at:

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Dear Karen,

Thank you for your support. It's obvious that you hold your many years of volunteerism for this community in high regard. The Jaycees are led by a group of young professionals who dedicate countless hours a year to children, to seniors, to families, and to Phoenixville in general.

We're proud to give to Phoenixville with everything we do. From our monthly street cleanings throughout the borough, to our sponsorship of kid's events and teams, to our high school scholarships, to our fundraisers for dozens of local groups, it's a beautiful thing to contribute to our town. And along the way, friendships for life are forged.

To those who ask "what do the Jaycees do?", we invite you to apply to join us and contribute! We meet the 2nd Thursday of every month at 7pm at our HQ building, 8 Gay Street. Hope to see you there.

- Carlos Ciruelos

Karen said...

I've always believed in and lauded all those Phoenixville residents who give of their most valuable assets, their hearts, devotion, and time.

Be they involved in our churches, synagouge, service organizations, our children's sports programs, schools, or any of the other numerous groups in our community, volunteers ARE the life-blood and true beating heart of our home town, Phoenixville.

Without them and their good work, how empty of concern and compassion for each other this town would be.

Carlos, I hope many respond to your invitation to visit the Jaycee meetings and volunteer in your organization's efforts.

Mr. Ellsworth Toohey said...

Thanks for the info. That explains a lot about what the Jaycees do. Perhaps I should rephrase my question to ask if the Jaycees get all the proceeds? As a member of this community for a long time, I know the good work they do and if the proceeds go directly to them, the cost to the Borough (police overtime and abuse to the park) can be justified. If there is money being sat on somewhere then there may be a bit of an issue.

The park took a beating this week and the Borough has been dragging its heals rehabbing the park. How many more events will it take to completely trash the park? Should be enact an ordinance that says that any event must return the park to its initial state and have the groups put up a good sized escrow or security bond?

Karen said...

Mr. Toohey, you are very welcome.

Since the Jaycees sponsor and work on all the events, pagent, fair, and parade, I believe the proceeds belong to the organization to use for their various projects.

As for Reeves Park, I was a member of a borough park committee which identified the needs of the various parks in town. The intent was to apply for grants to complete the work, but I am uncertain as to the current status.

Mr. Ellsworth Toohey said...

Mrs. Johns, it appears by the records of the Pa Dept. of State that there is a Dogwood Festival Inc. with an office at 8 Gay St, Phoenixville. Now, I think that is the JayCees building but I am trying to figure out what the deal is here.

Anonymous said...

*Hey Karen, let'sbe completely honest about the Jaycee's and their actual contributions. First of all, the Jaycees' have not paid dime one for police overtime for Dogwood Week, the parade or for the electricity that the actual local vendors use to light and cook at their respective tents. Plus the Jaycees also get a cut from the tickets for the very expensive rides that are offered. The JAYCESS keep all of that money. Let's also remember that the last time I checked the Jaycees had gotten so small that they needed to form an outside non-profit organization to actually run the Dogwood Fair, that was presided over by Tony and Henry, supposedly becaused they had aged out of the Jaycees. Has anyone gotten a true accounting?


Solofloyd said...

The Jaycees, the carnies, and/or both should be responsible for restoring the park. Sadly, it appears that the damage done this year was worse than expected and the Jaycees are asking for our help. I have posted about this on the Phoenixville Environmental Volunteerism Blog -

I emailed Katie, the president of the Jaycess, to inquire about holding a volunteer work day in the park to help clean up the mess. Unfortunately, I haven't heard back from Katie or gotten any comments on the blog.

If the people in this town are content to destroy the nicest park for a carnival then perhaps they should be willing to help clean up the mess?

Karen said...

Solofloyd, I want to comment so that my original post on this subject is not misconstrued.

The Jaycees didn't ask me to post a request for volunteers, I wrote the thread out of my desire to try and help them.

We've been in our home for a very long time and have seen the Jaycees at work every year. We know how dedicated they have been over the years in keeping the impact to a minimum and doing any needed repairs. This year was different.

The Jaycees did not know in advance that I was going to ask the public to contact them to volunteer help.

Solofloyd said...


Yes, I did misunderstand the post. I thought they were asking for help.

Anonymous said...

The Dogwood Festival/Parade is the largest expense on overtime between the Streets and Police Department, yet they do not receive any reimbursement. When the police cover after-school events, FAME, etc, their costs are paid for by the school district and/or other vendors. Why not the Jaycees???

Anonymous said...

What did I say that was sooo wrong, that I got edited?

Karen said...

Since I edited only one post on this thread, the question must be from Anonymous 8:29 p.m.

I hope you're able to recall what you wrote because if I respond to you with the content I may as well have posted the entire message as you sent it.

Please know that I don't take editing lightly.

I actually loathe editing.

I just want everyone to carefully think about what is written before they click on the publish button.