HC Commissioners explore countywide recreation

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 21, 2007

WINTON – If countywide recreation is to become a reality, it will take everyone working together.

That type of partnership may have begun Monday night in a meeting between the Hertford County Commissioners and leaders of the Elks National Shrine.

Carlton Coleman came before the commissioners during their regular meeting Monday evening to request a partnership between the Elks and the board to provide county recreation.

“We are willing to enter a long-term lease agreement for some of our property,” Coleman said.

He added the Elks could provide space for baseball, softball, swimming and outdoor basketball among others.

“We’re here to ask for your support in a joint venture of organized recreation,” Coleman said.

Commission Vice Chairman Howard Hunter III, who has been one of the board’s strongest proponents of recreation, said he was pleased with the Elks’ attempt and suggested forming a committee comprised of people throughout the county to study the idea of countywide recreation.

“We’ve been working on this for a long time,” Commission Chairman Curtis A. Freeman said. “I’m pleased to hear your offer. We need collaboration.”

Freeman then said he felt the county needed more recreation than just sports, although sports should be an integral part of what was studied.

Donald Wilson, the Grand Exalted Ruler of the Elks, said the group had been headquartered in Winton for 35 years and he wanted to see the community more involved there. He said there were many days the facilities weren’t used at all.

“What you’re talking about is long overdue,” Hunter said.

Commissioner John Pierce said he wanted to see Harrellsville, Cofield and Como included in the discussions along with Ahoskie and Murfreesboro where recreation is already provided.

Pierce added he felt the gym at C.S. Brown would be available to provide county recreation.

Commissioner Dupont L. Davis said he thought the idea was an important part of keeping children off the streets and out of the courtrooms and was supportive of the idea.

Hunter made a motion to support the partnership plan and Davis offered a second. It passed without objection.

Coleman and Wilson said they would be in touch with Hunter and Pierce to form the committee to further study the details of countywide recreation.