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Big Alum Lake Association Meeting
July 2, 2011

The meeting was called to order at 10:10 AM. President Janet Garon asked if there were any new members present and Mary Roy of 222 Roy Road and Richard Domash of 160 Lake Road introduced themselves.

The minutes of the August 14, 2010 meeting, which are posted on the BALA website and were available at the meeting, were accepted.

Janet introduced Rob Wheaton from Lycott who spoke about the recent weed treatment and the condition of the lake. Rob said that the water has shown continuous improvement both in clarity and in the slow growth of vegetation. There are no invasive weeds, phosphorus levels are low, and there is clarity of 16 to 18 feet. In the northwest cove there are some filamentous algae blooms that may be caused by construction run-off. Lycott can do spot treatments if necessary. He suggested leaving root structures in place when landscaping, using phosphorus free fertilizers, and keeping grass clippings out of the lake.

Janet gave the Treasurer's report:. One CD had matured and Janet had moved it from Southbridge Credit Union to Southbridge Savings Bank. Expenses had included costs for BALA mailings and buoy replacement, as well as payments to Lycott .  The Treasurer's report was accepted as read.

Committee reports followed:

Boating Committee - Matt Kibbe said that the buoys have been in the lake since Memorial Day. He noted that during the previous week a small boat pulling a tube had gotten out of control. The young drivers who were thrown from the boat were picked up by lake residents and dropped off at the boat ramp where they were met by police. Joel Casaubon's son, son-in-law, and a friend were able to board the small boat and stop it from circling. It was towed back to the boat ramp.

Joel said that the Sturbridge Lakes Advisory Committee is planning to offer a boating course. Young people must be age sixteen to drive a boat in Massachusetts, age twelve if they have taken a course. The State boating rules are posted at the boat ramp. John Argitis suggested changing the verbiage of the Big Alum Boating Rules to include the sentence, "Please keep speed to "no wake idle" before 9:00 AM."

Environmental Committee - Tammy Chase was not present to give a report.

Fishing Committee - Rob Scoble noted that the fish kill this spring had not been severe.

Dam Committee - Ken Gajewski reported that everything at the dam is fine. Lowering the water 36 inches last fall gave people time to work on their walls, and he plans to recommend lowering the lake the usual 30 inches this year.

History Committee - Martha Fearing was not present. Barbara LaRochelle asked that members look at the "Cottages" pages on the web site to see if they recognize any of the old homes pictured.

Membership Committee - Tim Gresenz said that last year's membership was 134 giving the Association $6,700 in dues. So far this year, 98 people have joined, which is more than at the same time last year. Tim and his committee members will try this summer to encourage more people to join.

A motion was made and a vote taken to accept the Committees' reports.

Boat Parade - Andi Cropley said that the parade is scheduled for 4:00 PM on July 3rd. If the parade must be postponed due to rain, Paul Lamarine will circle the lake with his bull-horn and announce the change of plan.

BALA Bash - Tracy Murphy said that the picnic will be held on July 23rd at the Italian Club. Steve Small of Karin's Kitchen will cater the event and appetizers and desserts are being coordinated by Christine Casaubon and Kathy Lamarine. Once again, Noah Lis will provide musical entertainment. Part of the cost of the picnic is being covered by our dues. Tim said that he and Rob would be looking for raffle and live auction items soon. Two banners announcing the Bash have been made by the Center of Hope in Southbridge; some residents will hang the banners from their party boats and "tour" the lake to advertise the party.

Under New Business, Janet said that nominations for the Friend of Big Alum Award should be made by July 22nd. At the August 13th meeting, there will be an election of officers, and the President's seat will be open this year. Nancy Molta, Ann Marie Argitis, and Rick Predella volunteered to serve as the Nominating Committee.

Janet noted that three long-time residents had passed away: Owen Luce, Grace Grant, and Emily Faxon.

There was some discussion about the pine tree that fell into the lake from the Ricci property. The tree cannot be seen at night and has become a hazard to boaters. Joel noted that stumps that are 2½ to 3 feet in diameter have been found floating in the lake as well. The Boating Committee will talk to Jason about removing the tree, and in the meantime Matt will place a buoy to mark its furthermost branches.

Ann Marie Argitis said that she will start the "circulation" of the flamingo again this year...  

The meeting adjourned at 11:00 AM.

Respectfully submitted,

Barbara LaRochelle, Secretary

BALA Minutes - Archives

July 8, 2006

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August 12, 2006

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July 7, 2007

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 August 11, 2007 

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July 5, 2008

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August 9, 2008

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July 11, 2009

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August 15, 2009

July 3, 2010

| August 14, 2010 | July 2, 2011 | August 13, 2011 | July 7, 2012 | August 11, 2012 | July 6, 2013 | August 17, 2013
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