Minutes of the Annual Meeting, September 29, 2019
In his absence, Friends of Valley Falls President, Joe King, designated Ann Letendre to conduct the 2019 Annual Meeting. Ann opened the meeting at 1:07 pm in the basement of the Red Barn. She welcomed members and guests. Everyone was given a copy of the 2018-2019 Annual Report.
Claire Janowski made a motion to approve the secretary’s minutes of the September 30, 2018, Annual Meeting. Lorraine Staley seconded her motion, which carried by a voice vote.
Ann highlighted the salient points of Committee Reports:
- Our website and E-Newsletters alert members to upcoming events.
- The Farm Buildings have been repaired from the 2018 lightning strike and updated as needed.
- A new septic system and well at the Barn have made the restroom here possible.
- We have about 172 members and remain debt-free.
She spoke about our events this year that were open to the public. The popular “3-Walk Weekend” events in May were well attended. Connecticut Open House Day in June welcomed about 70 visitors. Summer Farm Tours in July and August, and Artists Day on August 18 welcomed many more. She thanked Janit Romayko for the “Hoppin Hodges” fundraiser on Easter Sunday. She especially thanked our beekeepers Marci LaVoie, and Tom Kaminski for the success of their honey demo on Open House Day and Ron Levesque for his timely weed-wacking all summer long.
Ann spoke about our challenges, especially Board of Directors vacancies and continual upkeep of the historic farm buildings. The Heritage Center is behind schedule, but progress is being made. Plumbing, construction, and electrical work is ongoing. Ann thanked Jon Roe and Maryann Levesque for their storyboard research. Projected opening is sometime in 2020.
Bob Letendre, FVF Treasurer, summarized his yearly financial report which is printed in its entirety in the Annual Report. An audit committee made up of Tom Kaminski, Maryann Levesque and Ginny Gingras found the treasurer’s monthly income and expense reports to be in reconcilliation with all bank records on September 14, 2019. Bob encouraged members to contribute to the Valley Falls Farm Fund, our endowment fund at Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.
Election of a slate of proposed officers for 2019-21 followed. The nominating committee proposed: Joe King, President; Karin James, Vice-President; Jean Merz, Secretary; Bob Letendre, Treasurer. Hearing no additional nominations from the floor, Ann advised the Secretary to cast one vote for the proposed slate.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:20 pm.
Respectfully submitted, Jean Merz, Secretary
Our guest speaker was State Historian, Walter Woodward. He brought his 5-member “Band of Steady Habits” who entertained the assembly with a program of historic ballads entitled “Handed Down in Song: New England History and Culture.”