Chelsea Begins Its Quest for a Community Center

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By Doug Marrin

The Chelsea City Council took the next steps towards a community center by appointing seven residents to the task force charged with researching and making recommendations to the Council regarding the project.

Mayor Johnson explained the process began in February 2020 but was put on hold. “We collected applications at that time and then put them on hold due to COVID as many of the recreational facilities were closed for a period of time,” explained the Mayor. “But we're certainly eager to move forward.”

The primary role of the Community Center Task Force is to present research findings with recommendations to the Council for further study or action. However, the Task Force has no final decision authority.

Objectives for the committee include, 1) assessment of community space needs, 2) summarize construction, operational, and maintenance costs, 3) research funding methods, and 4) review and recommend the engagement of community partners such as Chelsea schools, St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea, Chelsea Aquatic Club, and other health and wellness organizations.

The nine-member committee is to be comprised of the following Chelsea residents:

  • Two City Council members.
  • One member from St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea/SRSLY.
  • One member from the Chelsea Area School District.
  • One member from the City Parks Commission.
  • One member from the Chelsea business community.
  • One member from a non-profit recreation organization in Chelsea.
  • Two members who are Chelsea residents at large.

Seven residents submitted their applications for the Task Force. The Council approved all seven.

  1. Reiley Curran from St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea/SRSLY.
  2. Samuel Angus from the City Parks Commission.
  3. Marcus Kaemming from the Chelsea Area School District.
  4. Scott McElrath from the Chelsea business community.
  5. Judy Oake, who is serving as a resident at large.
  6. Erin Brayton who is serving as a resident at large.
  7. Melissa Johnson from the City Council.

“This is a great opportunity to build healthy connections and opportunities for physical fitness and reduce social isolation forward for people of all ages,” commented Reilly Curran, representative from St. Joseph Mercy/SRSLY.

Representing Chelsea Area Schools, Marcus Kaemming noted, “The school district is looking for every opportunity for our students to have different options within our community. Things that are healthy choices that that can keep them fit both in the heart and the mind.”

Two more open spots remain on the Task Force, one for a council member and one for a non-profit recreational group. The City will keep applications open on its website until the positions are filled.

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