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History of PP&RD


  • In 1985, a group of Penrose residents presented a Service Plan to the Fremont County Commissioners, asking for permission to create the Penrose Park & Recreation District. The District was created to accomplish the following:


  1. Completion and long-term maintenance of a well equipped Penrose Park.

  2. Development of programs which will serve the interests of all ages and interest groups in the community.

  3. Operation of park and recreation programs which will compliment efforts by the school district and public service groups, and will draw on the experience of other communities.

  4. Implementation of inter-governmental agreements as appropriate to share services in order to achieve maximum efficiency and economy in providing services.

  5. Establishment of a publicly elected board of directors to manage and coordinate the affairs of the district.

  • In 1989, the District purchased property for the Penrose Park.


  • The Park District accomplished its stated goals and was run efficiently throughout the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s.


  • Beginning in 2008, Penrose residents began to see changes in the District. By 2014, the once pristine Penrose Park property was in shambles; events and activities were rarely held or held only for entrance fees; the Board was unreachable; and rumors abounded that the Board was embezzling funds.


  • In the summer of 2014, several Penrose citizens spent countless hours investigating the group now known as the “Old Board”. The investigations revealed that the Old Board had misappropriated District funds, failed to hold elections, violated CORA, mismanaged Penrose Park property, and otherwise failed at their duties.


  • Two of those citizens filed a formal CORA request with the Secretary of the Old Board and their attorney of record. The request sought, among other things, proof of a valid election. The Old Board, not having such proof, resigned from office.


  • The Fremont County Board of County Commissioners, acting under C.R.S. 32, appointed an Interim Board of Directors in September, 2014.


  • The Interim Board, consisting of Susan Luck, Tami Mundy, Roberta Newton, Patrick Slawson, and Calvin Sundermann, took office in September, 2014 and remained until the Election in February, 2015. They did an amazing job:


  1. Tracking down, sorting through, and properly addressing thousands of financial documents, outstanding bills, improperly recorded information with Fremont County, DOLA, the C.T.F., the IRS, and others.

  2. Learning the Statutory regulations and bringing the District into compliance.

  3. Adopting new Bylaws and beginning to create policies and procedures.

  4. Starting the arduous task of cleaning up the Park after years of neglect.

  5. Working to repair relationships with other entities, such as the Penrose Chamber of Commerce, the Penrose Fire Department, the Penrose Library, the RE-2 School District, the Canon City Chamber of Commerce, the Fremont County Government, the District’s past vendors, and many, many more.

  6. Engaging the community to acquire feedback through a survey, two open houses, and the establishment of a strategic planning committee.


  • In February, 2015 the Elected Board, consisting of Susan Luck, Tami Mundy, Richard Neidermyer, Gil Pineda, and Patrick Slawson took office.


  • Within 15 months, they have literally turned this District around. For instance, among other things:


  1. They successfully held Regular Meetings, Workshops, and Committee Meetings, opening the District to the public once again.

  2. They resolved all filing and banking issues; paid delinquent bills attributable to the District; began drafting policies and procedures; created numerous operational committees; established two websites, an email and phone number; and otherwise formed an administrative foundation for the District.                                                                                                                       

  3. They acknowledged the need for a long-term strategic plan and provided the necessary support for one to be completed, e.g., took surveys, held open houses, created a strategic planning committee, hired an architect, etc.

  4. Richard Neidermyer took the lead on Park maintenance. He spent weeks working through the irrigation system, fixing and identifying problems. He also led the charge on Community Clean-up Days, directing people to various projects that needed to be addressed. The Board ensured that unsafe and/or unnecessary equipment was removed, the grounds remained mowed, the Community Center was regularly cleaned, the flag poles were functioning, etc.

  5. The Board gave Sally Nicholson permission to landscape the area in front of the Community Center, as well as the area in front of the Pavilion.

  6. Tami Mundy and Patrick Slawson produced the video and application for a $15,000 KaBoom!/Dr. Pepper Snapple Group grant for playground equipment. Tami and Patrick successfully engaged community members to spread the word nationally, got the necessary Facebook votes and accomplished what many thought was impossible. They got us new playground equipment!! Richard Neidermyer, then took over the difficult tasks for ensuring a successful Build Day. It was a thrilling process and an extraordinary outcome for the Elected Board and the community of Penrose.

  7. By creating the Penrose Community Events Committee, Susan Luck led the effort to re-establish working relationships with the Penrose Library, the Penrose Elementary School, the Penrose Fire Department, the Penrose Chamber of Commerce, Rocky Mountain Back Country Horsemen, local churches, local merchants, the VFW, and other groups.

  8. The regular PP&RD Events Committee, led by Susan Luck and Gil Pineda, along with their team hosted “An Ol’Fashioned 4th of July” celebration; a “Back2School BBQ”; a short-term Penrose History Museum and Program; and an amazing Apple Day celebration, complete with one of the best Fireworks displays ever experienced in Fremont County. They also supported other local events by participating in the Back-to-School Open House and the Country Christmas. Patrick Slawson, in 2015, and Roberta Newton, in 2016, organized the Easter Egg Hunt that the Park does annually with the Penrose Fire Department.

  9. The Programs Committee, led by Patrick Slawson and Roberta Newton, organized an open gym program and yoga class.

  10. Susan Luck, Tami Mundy and Patrick Slawson attended the 2015 SDA Conference. Susan Luck also attended the 2015 June SDA training.

  11. They represented PP&RD by attending numerous Chamber of Commerce meetings, FCBCC meetings, and Fremont Heritage meetings.

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