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Conneaut Lake Park (CLP) Discussion Thread


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There will be a meeting sunday at 1pm at Stable Pit and Pub here at in Conneaut Lake (Need directions send me a PM) about the park.

 

I was at the park today and it was very lively. They had 3 security gaurds there 1 at the gate the others by the beach. There was cars coming in and out and they had a donation jar by the Gaurd Gate. The Beach Was Packed and there were still running cruises on the Kaylee Bell. They were also movinjg supplies in to the First Aid. The town was also packed with vacationers heading home Sheetz gas line was out onto the road.

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There is 79 pages of reading on that papers forum about clp. At first I thought allot of people on there were against the park, but after reading up, I realize that they want the park to open with proper management. I hope this happens. It seems that the current management has been sucking for a while.

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I'm irritated with this whole misadventure. The GM declares the park closed for the summer, period, yet there is talk that some sections of the park (like the Beach Club) will possibly open soon. It's a combination of scare tactics and also a effort to keep the park going on life support for a few more weeks before it runs out of money again.

 

I'm glad there is some community backing as shown by those giving donations but I see no point in donating money at this time just to open the park up for the short term when there is no long term fix. Yeah, it would be nice for the park to open up temporarily and I would patronize the park if it did reopen for a while. But I don't see fundraising efforts of under $100K as contributing to long term progress and I can't convince myself to contribute to this because I don't see it helping the long term future of the park at all. Such fundraising is nice to get a ride like the train or bug open but it can't save the entire park or get it out of debt.

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Friday at 1 is the big day. It is the court date to decide about LeRoys resignation. There is 3 possible out comes from this.

 

1) He appoints a New Custodian to over see operations of the park.

 

2) He appoints a board to Operate the park.

 

3) He Orders the Park to be Liquidated.

 

3 is Very bad.

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I don't think this news will help the grass roots efforts to get the park open. There are some major long term issues that need to be solved.

 

 

Past-due electric bill for Conneaut Lake Park hits $301K

 

By Jane Smith

 

06/05/07 —

 

CONNEAUT LAKE — Come Wednesday morning, the electric will be shut off at Conneaut Lake Park, except for Camperland and the water station — unless somebody comes up with a $150,000 payment.

 

LeRoy Stearns, court-appointed overseer, said Monday the electric company will shut off the electric because the park owes a bill of $301,833.40.

 

“It will leave the electric on for the water pump and Camperland and shut everything else down,” he said.

 

“The balance is due in 30 days. ... We have no money to pay it,” he said of the park’s finances.

 

The overdue bill includes $218,283.72 in unpaid electric bills he inherited from prior operators. The remaining $83,000 is for bills accrued from 2006 and the first five months of 2007.

 

Stearns said since he is petitioning the court for his removal as overseer of the currently-closed amusement park, he can’t accumulate more debt for the future board of directors, nor can he make any more commitments for the new board to assume.

 

“I am not trying to be the deliverer of bad news,” he said. “I just don’t know how the new board of directors is going to pay debts that are six- and eight-years old,” he added.

 

In the meantime, he said the only people now working at the park are two security persons; Bob Morrow, water system operator; George Deshner, director of operations; and the Camperland manager.

 

Stearns said he has a list of potential board members to present to the judge for appointment and he understands Crawford County Planner Jack Lynch has prepared a list for consideration as has the Economic Progress Alliance of Crawford County.

 

A court hearing is set for 1:30 p.m. Friday to consider his petition for removal of the custodianship and appointment of a new board of directors.

 

The court became involved in the park’s operation after attorney Dana Watson filed a lawsuit in 1998 against then-members of the Trustees of Conneaut Lake Park who had been deeded the park by former park owner Gary Harris to hold in trust for the public.

 

As a result of that lawsuit, the park was declared a charitable trust. The overseer position was put in place after all but one of the first members of the Trustees of Conneaut Lake Park had resigned.

 

Stearns had petitioned the court to sell 3.3 acres of land earlier this year as a way to pay off some of the debt and have money to open this year, but that petition was denied after Watson objected.

 

He announced the park was closed May 29, but allowed a scheduled wedding to be held June 2.

 

All other scheduled events at the park have been canceled.

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^ Why is it now that these bills are comming in from 8 years ago?

 

The bills are not just coming in. I'm sure the park was billed but they didn't pay all of the bills in total. Unpaid bills from the previous owner are mentioned in the article. It's just that now the electric company has set a deadline to for payment. Why the electric company is doing this right now I don't know. I also don't know if the park was paying any portion of their bills or if they possbily stopped recently to trigger this action. This is just part of the $2+ million (whatever the total is) of debt the park has accumulated.

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I bet it's because of when they said they were closed last week and failed to open Memorial day weekend. The electric company could of shut of power any time they did not pay bills. Now that CLP is so bouncy. They probly just want there money before they get robbed. I don't blame them.

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This is indeed a very sad day for me. I have not been to Conneaut Lake or the park since the summer of 1967 as my family moved from Pittsburgh to Macon, Georgia in 1968. Up until the move I spent 2 weeks of my life every summer at the lake and the park since 1954. My mother now 79 and I now 53 have plains to drive the 830 miles to see the lake more then likely the last time for us ever and just found out the park is closed. Some of my child hood fondest memories are of Conneaut Lake and the amusement park.

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I called the park office yesterday trying to see what was going on and left a message asking for them to please call me back. I had a gentlemen call me today and said plains are still to be open buy the end of June. Weather or not it happens I guess we will have to wait and see.

 

It is a shame the way our government gives subsists to the oil companies that make a 36 billion profit each year and cannot help save a piece of history like Conneaut Lake Park which would be a drop in the bucket to what they give the d*** oil companies!!!!!!

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Here is a recent artical about the court hearing set for tommorow at 1:30.

 

Published June 05, 2007 08:50 pm - Crawford County Court of Common Pleas Judge Anthony Vardaro will have two rulings to consider Friday regarding an overseer at Conneaut Lake Park.

 

Filed petitions set future of overseer in motion

 

 

By Jane Smith

 

06/06/07 —

Crawford County Court of Common Pleas Judge Anthony Vardaro will have two rulings to consider Friday regarding an overseer at Conneaut Lake Park.

 

 

The first will be a petition filed by LeRoy Stearns to end his court-appointed custodianship and appoint a new board of directors.

 

Stearns has been overseer since the summer of 2004, working with a former board, which resigned in September of 2005. He planned to sell 3.3 acres of land this spring to give the 115-year-old amusement park the money to pay down some of its $2.3 million to $2.5 million debt and to open for the summer.

 

When that petition was denied because of the objections of Attorney Dana Watson and no other money was received, Stearns announced in late May the park wouldn’t open. He then petitioned to end his position and to have a new board appointed.

 

Plans are ongoing by a group wanting to raise money to allow the park to open, but there is no written plan on how that is going to happen — or if it can happen this summer.

 

In the meantime, a second petition, filed late Monday afternoon by Watson on behalf of the Economic Progress Alliance of Crawford County, calls for the judge to retain the position, but replace Stearns with either 11 new custodians or choose one person or several people from a submitted list to succeed him.

 

In addition, it calls for the judge to approve a master plan developed by the EPA and completed in February.

 

The petition calls for the 11 members to be named overseer for 90 days and then named as the new board of the Trustees of Conneaut Lake Park.

 

Explaining why he doesn’t want to end the overseer position, Watson said the original purpose for which the position was created hasn’t yet been achieved.

 

He expressed appreciation for the good-faith efforts of Stearns and George Deshner, director of operations, to work “in the best interest of the park and the public trust.”

 

He said the most important reason for not ending the overseer position is that the new board will for a brief interim “need the protection of the court custodianship” to assure the Trustees of Conneaut Lake Park are put on a “sound financial basis” and creditors are protected.

 

In addition, he said the court will need to assure that all creditors, debts and obligations of the park have been arranged and provided for and the board will be able to carry out its duties without court supervision.

 

In addition, Watson said the board will adopt a resolution to “attempt in every reasonable way to continue the traditional role that Conneaut Lake Park has served in the community, along with other and additional development plans, for the approval of the court.”

 

Watson said the proposed board and the EPA have “sufficient experience to meet the challenges of facing the future of Conneaut Lake Park and are capable of developing and implementing the detailed plan that addresses both the financial and physical structure” of the park.

 

In a letter from EPA director Mark Turner to Watson, Turner said the EPA will provide considerable administrative support for a period of a year or so and it’s likely that some additional level of direct management will be required by the Trustees.

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LeRoy Stearns, court-appointed overseer of Conneaut Lake Park, has been granted permission to resign, but not for 30 days, according to a ruling made by Crawford County Court of Common Pleas Judge Anthony Vardaro.

 

 

The decision came at the end of today’s scheduled court hearing on Stearns’ petition to dissolve the custodianship.

 

Vardaro agreed to end the custodianship of the 115-year-old amusement park, but denied another petition filed by attorney Dana Watson to continue the overseer position for 90 days. Instead, Vardaro said he will appoint a new board of directors for the Trustees of Conneaut Lake Park on July 6. That group will then have authorization to operate the park.

 

Anybody interested in a trustee position must send a resume to his office at the Crawford County Courthouse so Vardaro receives it by 4:30 p.m. June 22. He then will conduct interviews of applicants.

 

The park has not opened for the 2007 season, but numerous efforts are still being conducted to try to have the park opened before the end of summer.

 

For the better or worse, only time will tell.

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