Park Board Notes
Park district hires head of parks, planning
The Arlington Heights Park District has hired a new director of parks and planning, who will begin in the job April 1.
During a recent meeting, parks Director Gerald Oakes announced Brian Huckstadt, the superintendent of parks in Rolling Meadows, will be joining the Arlington Heights park district.
Huckstadt is filling the vacancy left by Angelo Capulli, the long-time parks and planning head who retired last year after 25 years of service.
"Brian is a sharp fellow," park Commissioner Jim Radlein said. "What we need is a fellow who ... is a good needs forecaster and someone who will bring our parks department a little more into the computer age.
"I think he's a good candidate for it, looking at his background," he said.
"He has come very highly recommended," park Commissioner Sharon Romack said.
Board plays it safe with religious displays
Resident Lori Henkels spoke at a recent Arlington Heights park board meeting and asked commissioners whether they would consider having more religious displays on park property around the holidays.
North School Park, for instance, has a massive display around the Christmas holidays, although the objects there are largely secular.
Oakes said governmental agencies have to be careful about stepping into the area of religion. "It's a very fine line to walk," he said.
But he also said he thinks the district is handling such things in a manner they should be handled.
"That's an area we can't really get involved with," park board President Mike Gilfillan said. "I think things are pretty good the way they are."
Resident complains about damage
At another Arlington Heights park board meeting, resident Patrick Murray said he has been experiencing problems because his home is so close to ballfields at Thomas Middle School.
He said there have been cars hit by balls, damage to bushes, noise, dust and parking problems.
The district maintains the fields, but does not own the property. However, park officials will work with Murray to try to resolve some issues, Gilfillan said.
Park district to offer prizes for fund-raiser
The Arlington Heights Park District board of commissioners recently agreed to provide some prizes for the plastic duck race fund-raiser this spring at Lake Arlington.
The race, which will raise money for teacher grants and other needs in Arlington Heights Elementary District 25, is being sponsored by the ABC/25 Foundation and the Arlington Heights Council of PTAs on May 19.
Park Commissioner Sharon Romack said the district will donate four free rounds of golf at Nickol Knoll as one prize and tickets to high tea at the Historical Museum as another.
"I think this is really neat," she said. "I think it's going to bring a lot of attention to Lake Arlington. Plus, it's going to support two very worthwhile organizations."
District to borrow $445,000 for loans
The Arlington Heights park board also recently authorized the district to borrow $445,000 to pay off past loans for capital improvement projects.
The older loans were used to complete Nickol Knoll, part of Lake Arlington, Melas Park and the Davis Street maintenance facility, officials said. …