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Historic building gets a facelift

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Posted: Wednesday, August 1, 2007 12:00 am

Editor’s note: This is the fourth in a series on improvements planned for Big Bear Valley Recreation and Park District parks in the 2007-08 fiscal year.

Rudy Macioge has been on a mission since joining the Big Bear Valley Recreation and Park District in 2005. The representative from Fawnskin on the Park District Advisory Commission has pushed for improvements at Miller Park in the small North Shore town.

Rick Fromm credits Macioge with recent parking lot paving and the improvements being done to the interior of the community building at the park. Indoor improvements include the remodeling of the kitchen with a new stove and refrigerator. “Rudy says ‘what’s the problem, let’s fix it,’” Fromm said. “That’s is a breath of fresh air. He’s taken that approach, not just on Fawnskin parks, but on all park district issues. Rudy keeps people on track.”

Another project includes renovating the community building’s upstairs rest room to meet Americans with Disabilities Act requirements. “The place was built in 1908 and was once a school house. It has great character,” said Reese Troublefield, park district director. “But we need to upgrade. It’s not safe for senior citizens.” Work is expected to begin in August.

B’nai Big Bear meets at the Miller Park community building. Joe Balistocky, vice president of B’nai Big Bear, said they are pleased with the improvements so far. “Miller Park is a historic facility and we like being there,” Balistocky said. “For us, everything was fine as they were, but we’re pretty happy with what they’ve done.”

Improvements to the building and the parking lot are only the beginning. The park district project list for Miller Park includes resurfacing the basketball and tennis courts, and installing a new backboard and goal. Total cost of the resurfacing project is $27,000, which is coming from general reserves. The two projects are expected to be on the work schedule by October.

Marlene Thurston said the improvements so far are good. She doesn’t consider the tennis and basketball court refurbishments a high priority. “If they have the money, then that’s fine, but if they don’t, I think they can hold off on it,” Thurston said.

Fromm wants to see the retaining wall in the parking lot finished, as well as some work done to the landscaping. “Right now the wall looks like a job that is not finished, but what they did do was appropriate,” Fromm said. “It addressed the main issue and that was a bare dirt parking lot.”

Fromm said the North Shore Improvement Association has agreed to maintain the landscaping at the park. “We’re just waiting on things to get done,” Fromm said. “(The park district staff) put in sprinklers. That was a nice touch. That showed some forethought.”

Aug. 8: Swim Beach.

Contact reporter Kathy Portie at 909-866-3456, ext. 135 or by e-mail at

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