The past two years have certainly posed some challenges for an organization whose mission is “To provide a gathering place for residents of Clinton and South Whidbey that fosters a thriving sense of community and provides a vital connecting link for our rural population.”
Not being able to gather due to the pandemic has been challenging. But it has also provided an opportunity for your current board to focus on many improvements, changes and repairs to both the structure of the hall and to the grounds. In addition, there have been many new systems implemented in how CCH communicates with members and conducts the business of managing the hall.
As a board, we have been busy and would like to share some accomplishments and thank our members for their continued support and encouragement. You make a difference for us!
We hope that in 2022 the hall will once again become more active with community gatherings.
Financial Reporting and Technology Systems and Security Enhancements
- Moved onto a free online service that allows for all CCH Board communication, planning and document storage.
- Moved critical account information and passwords to a secure platform to ensure proper digital security.
- Moved to a new, more up-to-date financial record keeping & accounting system.
- Movement toward digitizing all documents for record keeping.
- Started creating/updating instructions and best-practices to ensure knowledge can be efficiently passed on to future board members.
- Use of videoconference meetings for regular and member board meetings.
- Redesigned and updated the website.
- Increased use of online banking (important for several reasons, but also because the local Clinton branch of our bank closed in 2021).
- Continued regular postings on Facebook.
- Sending out a newsletter to members at least quarterly (and sometimes more-frequently).
- Frequent renewal of reader board messages.
- Posting updates on website, including photos of events.
- Professional photos taken to highlight the hall facilities.
- Painted all exterior walls and trim
- New metal roof installed on the hall and on the small out-building south of the hall
- Installed new gutters
- Painted front doors
- Updated kitchen with paint and drawer hardware
- Installed new LED lighting in kitchen & closet spaces
- Added shelving to utility room
- Built new crawl space vent covers – front and back
- Directional signage added to back side of hall (per member suggestion!)
- Rebuilt the historical “Clinton Community Hall” sign mounted on front roof line
- Installed new enclosed bulletin board by the front door
- Added roofline cafe lights and WiFi-enabled “smart” controller devices
- Installed an electric fireplace
- Extensive weeding of garden spaces and addition of mulch (ongoing)
- Planted 700 daffodil bulbs in gardens in fall of 2020
- Planted 40 Shasta Daisy plants in winter of 2021 and 30 more in fall of 2021
- Planted Boxwood plants to provide a visual screen along southern boundary next to Simmons property
- Replaced the STOP sign at exit of parking lot
- Removed aging plants and added plants where needed
- Removed vegetation along front of building and kitchen walls and replaced with gravel for easier and safer access to building
- Extensive trimming of large fir tree by stop sign to improve visibility for traffic entering and leaving the parking lot
- Parking curbs installed to define walkways and handicap parking
- Totem pole removed (rotted base)
- Built reusable, seasonal, wooden decorations to display on lawn bordering 525
- Purchased new LED holiday lighting for the big community tree and for the grounds of the hall
- Restoration of flagpole (in progress)
- The board holds annual day-long retreats early each year to plan budgets and to ensure the organization is operating in a fiscally-responsible manner.
- Our community came together and gave generously in 2021 to raise enough money for our new roof.
- The hall was closed for rentals for much of 2020 and 2021. As it appeared the pandemic was coming under control in mid-2021, we started to slowly open to rentals again to test how we could balance community safety with rental use of the hall.
- The board approved rental rate increases to bring rates into line with norms and with the time/effort it takes to manage rentals.
- The board developed a Civic Use Rental program that offers greatly discounted rates to local non-profit organizations. This effort aligns with the mission of the hall to provide a gathering place for our community.
- The pandemic made it challenging to hold community events. In response, the board worked to develop several alternative events that could be held safely. Along with other community organizations, we sponsored Easter, Halloween and Christmas events with appropriate Covid precautions.
- We have held our annual meetings the past two years via videoconference. This is not our ideal, but it has worked for the Board to communicate yearly accomplishments and financial reports.
- The board is currently planning for the possibility of more-normal events and meetings in 2022, and is hoping that we will be able to once again open as a gathering place for our community.
And there’s still more on the list as we move forward! Thanks once again for helping to keep this community resource healthy and vibrant.