By BRADEN LAMMERS
The Jeffersonville Parks Authority Board took the initial steps to bring an ice skating rink back to downtown Jeffersonville this winter and also approved a Halloween event to be held in Nachand Fieldhouse.
Sara Schutz, assistant superintendent of special events and RiverStage, presented the proposal to bring the ice skating rink back to the corner of Spring and Market streets beginning Nov. 23.
She said the rink would be open daily from Nov. 23 — Black Friday — to Jan. 6. The rink would remain open through the end of January, but likely only be open on weekends.
Schutz also provided a financial report from the rink’s operations last year and the expectations for expenses and revenue this year.
According to the financial report presented, to operate the rink last year it cost the city more than $154,000. Estimated expenses for this year total $131,714.
A major cut in the expenses is related to electrical work to ready the site that the city will not have to pay Duke Energy to complete this year.
“This year we won’t have the $20,000 electrical fee to get us up and running,” Schutz said. “But I do anticipate that most of these costs we will see again this year.”
Income is also estimated to be about the same as last year.
According to the financial report, rink admission generated $75,522 last year and the anticipated income this year is $75,000. The city also generated some money from the food vendor at the rink, which paid between a portion of its sales — $1,423 — to the city.
The remainder of the income was financed by the Urban Enterprise Zone, Jeffersonville City Council and the Jeffersonville Redevelopment Commission, which provided $33,000 each.
The parks department will again be seeking money from the three entities, but at a lower amount of $21,000.
Other potential changes this year include renting a larger ice rink with the former Tubby’s Pizza building demolished, and the site purchased by the city, allowing groups to rent the rink for private events, hosting ice skating lessons and possibly allowing a Christmas tree stand to operate on the site, with a portion of the revenue to go to the city.
The Crashers, a local rock ‘n’ roll cover band, made a request to host a Halloween show in its hometown.
“It seems like every time we put on a big show around here we end up going to New Albany with the show,” said Mark Maxwell, the band’s lead singer. “We just really wanted to come to Jeffersonville to be honest with you.”
A request was approved to allow the band to rent the Nachand Fieldhouse to host their Monster Crash 2: The Haunted Prom from 8 p.m. to midnight Oct. 27.
The parks authority board offered several special approvals in order to ready the building for the event.
It offered an allowance to serve alcohol on park property, approved $1,000 worth of electrical upgrades — which is a one-time expense — and will need to be granted a waiver on the city’s noise ordinance by the Board of Public Works.
Parks Director Paul Northam said an inspection and approval is still required from Indiana Department of Homeland Security and the rental price and other costs for the space totals $2,000 for the band, a portion of which will go toward the electrical upgrades.
Maxwell said the band is expecting a crowd of about 1,200 to 1,400 for the show.
Kovert Hawkins Engineer Matt Gullo provided a quick update on the progress of the Vissing Park project.
He said minor electrical work is still being completed on the northern portion of the park, seeding for grass should take place this week on the southern portion of the park and is expected to be completed by the end of the month.
He added the project is still under budget.
The parks authority board approved a contract to allow Jacobi, Toombs and Lanz Inc. to pursue permits through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to move the RiverStage down river about 90 feet so it is centered in Jeffersonville’s Terrace Lawn.
The contract amount is not to exceed $7,500.