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Ripples From Citizens Restoring Congamond
By Linda M. Champagney
April 2012

The early spring has brought everyone out of hibernation and activity on the lake is increasing. Our first CRC meeting of the year brought old friends and new together to hear plans for this season and to vote on the all-important theme of the Boat Parade, this year to be held on Saturday, July 7th. Several suggestions were made and voted on. And the winner is: In memory of Tyler Granfield, the young man who met with an unfortunate accident on the job, “Trees.” Anything to do with trees. It’ll be interesting to see what creative expressions are presented on that theme.

Over the winter, the beaver situation has brought CRC, LMC, and the Towns of Southwick, Granby, and Suffield together to come up with a solution. LMC is the leader of the project, with the backing of CRC and the Towns, and it has grown from merely a beaver solution to a complete overhaul of the Farmington Canal in order to keep the only functioning outlet to the lake operating as it should. YOU CAN HELP! Join the members of CRC on June 2 at 8 a.m. We’ll meet and proceed to the canal, where we’ll be hauling timber out of the canal and otherwise clearing as much as possible there. Join us at the next meeting of Citizens Restoring Congamond at 7:30 on May 8th at Crabby Joe’s (downstairs) to hear more about it.

Here’s a quick rundown of what’s planned for this year: Lake Clean-up Day June 2, Boat Parade July 7, Babb’s Summer Concert Series Sunday afternoons from July 8th through August 26th with a wide assortment of types of music from 1 to 5 pm for which a $5 donation per person is asked (the bands need to be paid). Babb’s will host a Bluegrass Festival all day (11 a.m. to 8 p.m.) on September 8th with several top notch Bluegrass Bands. Family Fun Day is September 16th. There will be a Swap Meet in October. More details as each event draws closer, and get the whole scoop at our meetings, of course. At the May meeting we’ll have a Boating Safety Overview with Chief Krynicki, including boat docks and safety measures. Please join us! And let’s have a safe year on the water this year.

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.

 

Ripples From Citizens Restoring Congamond
By Linda M. Champagney
November 2011

November brings cooler weather but warm thoughts of thanks for all of the volunteers and sponsors and everyone who has helped Citizens Restoring Congamond and The Babb’s Restoration Project over the past year. We thank you all so very much! You’re essential to our mission of protecting and bettering the Congamond Lakes and for the restoration of Babb’s Park.

On October 26th, Citizens Restoring Congamond was honored at the Southwick Rotary Club’s annual awards banquet at Roma Restaurant in Southwick as we were given their 2011 Outstanding Vocational and Community Service Award. We are both humbled and honored.

The deadline for signing up for the annual winter vacation is approaching (November 15th). If you’d like to go with us to Barbados for 2 nights and then on a Clipper Ship for 7 nights, cruising the Windward Islands, please contact us as soon as you read this. You do not have to be a member of CRC to go.

Our CRC Christmas Party is coming up, as well, and we invite you to join us! It will be held at Louie B’s on December 3rd. See the website for ticket information or ask any Board Member. Buffet dinner and dancing to a live band is offered.

Our last meeting of 2011 was in October and we re-elected Ann Gustafson as Treasurer, and Bob Tatro as Secretary. Our speaker was Herb Sobansky, a licensed trapper and President of the CT Trappers Association, who spoke about the beavers and the trapping process.

The CRC Board will continue to meet through the winter months and we’re working on an even better Summer Concert Series at the Park next summer. Stay tuned for more exciting news!

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.

 

Historic landmark building Vandalized, again!
Reward Offered!!

Please donate to help replace what was vandalized.
 

January 27, 2011 - Second break-in!

There has been a second break-in at the historic Babb’s Roller Skating Rink in West Suffield, CT. On January 27th, we discovered the doorway to the rink wide open when we arrived to plow snow. Someone had pried off the plywood from the back end of the rink to get in and apparently kicked the door open at the front end to exit. Fortunately, nothing had been damaged this time and nothing was missing but this seems to be starting a trend. The footprints were covered with freshly fallen snow so there was no way to determine how many people were involved.

Ken Crane put the plywood back up, this time with extra long screws and secured the door to make it much more difficult to break down. The Suffield Police Department has also promised extra patrols through the property. Because this has happened twice now, a concerned anonymous donor has been very generous and given us a video surveillance system enabling us to more closely monitor the property, for which we are very grateful.

A reward remains in effect for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the vandal(s) involved in this and the November break-in at the rink. If you have any information, please call the Suffield Police Department at 860-668-3870
 

November 2010 Break-in!

As you know, CRC and many volunteers are try to doing something good for the community, which is re-open the rink building to the Suffield Community (and surround areas) where kids would have a safe, drug and alcohol-free place to go, summer and winter. Many have volunteered hundreds of hours, and donated money in tough economic times:

Historic landmark building Vandalized- Reward Offered

It was discovered by Scott Feron around 8am Saturday morning Nov. 20, as he was opening it for volunteers to come in to help restore this landmark that belongs to the community. He called the Suffield police immediately, and a report and photos of the vandalism damage were taken.

They shut off the breaker switch near the main entrance way, so no lights were on when the damage was done. They backed a vehicle into one of the supports that hold up the overhang on the entrance way. They took a hammer and smashed 6 -8 holes in the main entrance door windows. They pried open the doors facing the lake, and kicked out the door facing the street from the inside. The spilled paint on the hardwood skating floor, and also on a valuable antique piano that had been donated. Expensive architectural drawings were damaged. The vandals smashed several expensive historically accurate windows, and someone cut their hand as there was blood on the window. They stole both First Aid kits, presumably to stop the bleeding.

Several hours were spent cleaning up the glass, but there is still other damage.

REWARD: We believe one of the perpetrators has a cut on their hand or arm. There is a reward being offered for information leading to the arrest and convictions of the vandal(s). Anyone with any information should contact the Suffield Police.
 

 

 

CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney
November 2010

November brings a pause between CRC Meetings and a time to think of everything we’re thankful for. It also gives me time to address something that keeps coming up: What IS Citizens Restoring Congamond?

Citizens Restoring Congamond (CRC) is a group of people concerned about the Congamond Lakes. The milfoil problem in the lake united us and made us a voice that refused to go unnoticed by town governments. Happily, the milfoil problem is now under control, and other invasive weeds are also being treated. The lake is in great shape now, weedwise, but another threat has popped up: beavers.

So what’s the problem with a few beavers, you might ask. First of all, there aren’t just a few. There are over 100 mating pairs of beavers. As soon as one dam is demolished, another one pops up. The Canal off South Pond is now blocked. Since it is the only functioning outlet for the lakes, and since the water’s not going anywhere, the lakes are not flushing themselves of the nutrients that continually pour into the lakes from roads, lawns, farms, etc. Yes, your lawn fertilizer, natural or synthetic, feeds the weeds. In addition, this causes algae bloom in the summer heat, when you’d like to be using the lake for recreational purposes. As our technical advisor, Steve Schmid, pointed out at our last meeting, the lakes are not a swimming pool. They’re a living system. Dumping chemicals into them isn’t the answer. The source of the problems must be addressed. And in the case of the algae situation, the beavers are complicating the problem.

In addition, the lakes leach into the aquifer. That’s our drinking water, folks. So stagnant water full of contaminants goes into our drinking water if we don’t fix the problem. And for those who live on the lakes, a healthy lake has a direct impact on your property values. Every CRC meeting should be packed by people who live on the lakes and by those who care about the lakes and who use them for recreational purposes. Do you fish? Do you like healthy fish?

CRC provides one-third of the cost of treating the lakes each year, and our members volunteer for projects that ensure the health and cleanliness of the lakes. We also have fundraising events to that end, and the Babb’s Restoration Project is one of our projects. Babb’s is a Suffield property. It should be inundated by volunteers! No matter who you are, there is something you can do there.

We’re thankful for those who volunteer, for the bands who played at our concerts this summer, for those who sponsored our concerts, cleaned up the beach, set up our stage, worked on our car show, keep the rink warm in the winter, feed our volunteers, and for all of you out there who read this and decide to help. We’d also like to invite you to our annual Christmas Party on December 4th at Louie B’s. You don’t have to be a member to come, it’s quite reasonable, and lots of fun. Contact us at the address below or call Louie B’s for more information. Have a memorable Thanksgiving. Get involved.

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.

Babb's Summer Concert Series
Free Concert to to benefit the Babb’s Restoration Project

Sunday, August 15, 2010
2 – 5 pm

Appearing: SPF-4

Come by Boat or by Land to SEE this great band

SPF-4 (www.spf-4.com) will be performing surf-inspired rock music on our outdoor stage, overlooking lovely Lake Congamond.

Grab your surfer shorts, boogie board, #4 sun tan lotion and beach chairs to enjoy this surf-inspired rock band – SPF4!

Please join us at Babb’s Amusement Park. Bring lawn chairs or a beach blanket to sit on. Admission is free, donations are gratefully accepted.

Babb’s Amusement Park is located at 433 Babb’s Road, West Suffield, CT on Lake Congamond

Presented by Citizens Restoring Congamond
 All Donations will go towards re-opening Babb’s Park


FREE CONCERT!

Sunday, August 8
2 – 6 p.m.

Come by Boat or by Land to SEE this great band

The full Changes In Latitudes band will perform overlooking Babb’s beach.
Bring your lawn or deck chairs, sit back and
enjoy Jimmy Buffet-style music!

433 Babb’s Road, West Suffield, CT on Lake Congamond
 
All Donations will go towards re-opening Babb’s Park

Press Release


CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney
August 2010

August sometimes feels rather tropical in these parts, but on August 8th we’re bringing you a slice of paradise at Babb’s! Bring your lawn chairs, your beach blanket, whatever you want to sit on because “Changes In Latitude” will be performing on our outdoor stage overlooking the lake from 2-6 pm on August 8th! You don’t want to miss it! Come by boat or by car, but come join in the fun! This concert is to raise funds for the Babb’s Restoration Project, so all donations will be gratefully accepted. We intend to have more concerts to raise more funds for Babb’s, and if you’d like to perform, please contact us at the website below.

Cruise Congamond was a success again this year, with 182 cars. It made just under $6,000 for the Lake Treatment Fund and a little over $1,000 for the Babb’s Restoration Project.

Claudia (Babb) Reich sent the Babb’s Restoration Project a donation for $5,000 recently. We’re so grateful for her continued support of this project.

Babb’s Beach is getting spiffed up along with the rink. The concrete walls are now green, thanks to paint donated by Sherwin Williams and the work of Susan Swor, Chris Swor and BJ Getsky. In the rink itself, some of our younger volunteers have jack-hammered out 16” thick concrete and wheel-barrowed in a lot of sand to raise the floor level, in preparation for the new plumbing to be installed. We’re making progress, and we want to remind you that this project is funded by your donations, and the work is done entirely by volunteers. If you don’t help, it doesn’t get done.

Elections in October will be for President and Vice President. If you’re interested, please come to our next meeting and let us know.

Plans for the 2011 Winter Vacation are in progress. We’re looking at Mexico and Jamaica so far. If you have other suggestions, we’d like to hear them.

As we do each year, we’re selling raffle tickets for the LAPA West kayak raffle. Tickets are $5/ticket or a book of 5 for $20. The drawing is October 2. We are a member of LAPA West, which stands for Lakes and Ponds Association of Western Massachusetts. Tickets will be available at our meetings.

And speaking of meetings, our next one is on August 10th at Crabby Joe’s, at 7:30 pm. Everyone is welcome and we’ll be looking for you there!

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.


June 29, 2010

Don't forget the great goings-on at Babb's park on Saturday July 3rd. The day starts at 11:00 with the Citizens Restoring Congamond 3rd annual vintage car show "Cruise Congamond". Live entertainment will be appearing all day starting with Tracey Mnich and Noah presenting an eclectic mix of everything from ABBA to polka's.

In Time, a five piece vocal group performing oldies, Motown, rhythm & blues and soul will follow. At 2:00 most of the cars will be cruising down the roads surrounding the lake led by an antique fire truck returning to the park soon after. (Hence the title "Cruise Congamond”… Get it?)

At approximately 4:00, Granby's own Mayocks & guests will take the stage performing 'til dusk. Meanwhile, at approximately 5:00 decorated boats will be filling the cove near Babb's Beach for our annual 4th of July boat parade. (This year's theme is “Christmas In July”). The parade will sail off at 6:00. At dusk lakeside residents will be lighting up the lakes with tiki-torches & bon fires. Throughout the day there will be crafters, face painting, massage chairs, jewelry and pampered chef displays and great food.

All this is built around the 300 or so vintage cars we are expecting to attend. A full day for all the family!


CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney
May 2010

CRC’s first meeting of the year covered a lot of territory: the operating budget, the schedule of events, the accident on the lake Sunday, April 11th, the need for improved safety on the lake, and the Local Permitting Process. We invited the Selectmen from Suffield and Southwick, as well as the Harbormaster and the Lake Management Committee. Tom Frenaye, First Selectman from Suffield, and Dennis Clark, from the Southwick Conservation Commission were warmly welcomed.

Kevin Maloney spoke on the Membership Drive. The younger members of CRC suggested having a kick-off party at Louie B’s on May 8th and Crabby Joe’s on a date to be determined. It was very heartening to see how many membership renewals had already come in. This lake is beautiful because we keep funding its maintenance, along with Suffield and Southwick. CRC contributes a full one-third of the cost of maintaining the lakes so that we aren’t overrun by milfoil or other invasive species and the water is clean for everyone to enjoy. We’re also pushing to keep it safe. CRC supports in principle the LPP, provided the money collected goes to increased patrols on the lake. CT lakefront homeowners are voluntarily contributing under the same assumption. Suffield continues to offer to help patrol the lakes with Southwick.

June 5th will be our annual lake cleanup and beautification day. We gather at the North Boat Ramp at 8 a.m. Some take boats around the lake and clean up anything amiss, and others rake and plant things at the North Boat Ramp and at other locations. Join us!

Steve Schmid, our Technical Advisor, informs us there is no evidence of Zebra Mussels in Congamond, although monitoring continues.

Scott Feron reports that the Babb’s Rink is 98% watertight now that the lower roof is on, and once the 13-pane architecturally significant windows are re-glazed and painted and the lower siding on the upper section of the building is in place, we’ll be watertight. Unfortunately, this has depleted our budget, and we’re now in fundraising mode. If you can send a few dollars, we can sure use them. See address below. Make checks out to Babb’s Restoration Project.

Tom Frenaye mentioned that the CT DEP finalized a study for the Suffield sewer needs at the lake, which will begin later this spring. Tom also told us the 200 acres across from Babb’s is meant for a bird sanctuary, passive recreation, and some farming. It’s still in the planning stages.

Dennis Clark spoke on the LPP and fielded questions from the membership. CT and MA lakefront residents who intend to put in a dock need to go to the Conservation Commission room, second floor, at Southwick Town Hall, to get a copy of the application for the permit. There’s a drop box there to put the completed application in as well. There is a schedule of fees for docks, boats, rafts, buoys, etc. The basic fee covers one dock and one boat. (CT is voluntary.)

Next month’s speaker will be Anne Capra of the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, who will offer the organic alternative to synthetic lawn chemicals. See you on May 11th at 7:30 at Crabby Joe’s.

Keep July 3rd open for our annual Cruise Congamond car show, with live music all day, plus the Boat Parade. We expect 300 cars! This year’s Boat Parade theme is “Christmas in July.”

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.


CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney
April  2010

It's April once again, and time for our first annual meeting at Crabby Joe's at 7:30 on April 13th. Come hear about the Local Permitting Process and what it means, as well as an overview of what's happening this year.

On the Babb's Project, we've received a $1500 donation toward the covered pavilion. We're very excited about this and hope that more donations (large AND small) will arrive soon. Our building permit is good until June 12th. Having a covered stage will allow us to present some quality entertainment in order to raise more money for the project. Without a covered stage, the bands won't play. If everyone who can would send a few dollars, marked Babb's Project - Pavilion, we'll be able to have some really good concerts this summer.

Babb's Work Days continue each weekend unless otherwise noted. We appreciate our dedicated volunteers so much! We'd love to see new faces, too. You can join us on Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon or so, or Sundays from 1-4 or so. Even if you just want to come and see what there is to be done and decide if there's something there that you'd like to help with, just come. If weekends don't work for you but you'd still like to help, please contact Scott@babbsrink.org to arrange for an alternate time.

Our big annual event, Cruise Congamond, will need many more volunteers. It's on July 3rd. Please consider helping out. The CRC and Babb's Board Members get pretty tired trying to do it ourselves. Volunteer a little or a lot, it's up to you. But we need your help and you'll have fun doing it.

See you on April 13th at 7:30 at Crabby Joe's!

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.

CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney
Jan. 2010

With January comes a new beginning. It’s our annual opportunity to make a fresh start, to do things we wanted to do last year but didn’t for one reason or another, and we’re hoping that includes a new resolution to volunteer for those of you who haven’t yet.

The CRC Membership Committee is getting started this month and is looking for people to attend the meetings. There will be envelope-stuffing to be done, and brainstorming on effective ways to get the word out to everyone about CRC’s mission to keep the lakes healthy, clean and safe. If you’d like to help in this worthy effort, please contact us by website or at the PO box listed below. We’d love to have you.

The Babb’s Restoration Project continues and is also looking for volunteers on Saturdays and other days by appointment. (Contact Scott@babbsrink.org to arrange for alternate times.) The standing seam metal roof contract was awarded to Eagle Rivet Roof Service Company in March of 2008. They held their March 2008 price for us and we gave them additional work, totaling $49,900. This allows the new soffit to be installed where the upper roof meets the high wall. Our historically significant 13-pane windows are being carefully reglazed by Two Guys Painting. Three sides of the rink are ready for the standing seam metal roof to be put on and it is in progress.

Work days will continue on Saturdays unless otherwise posted on the website, and other days by appointment, weather permitting. There are multiple indoor projects to be done as our budget allows.

Kevin O’Kane, an Eagle Scout from Windsor Locks, is presenting for approval his project to build a Visitor’s Kiosk for the Babb’s property, which will be constructed from recycled materials from the rink and will offer information on the beach, the rink, the rails to trails nearby, and other local points of interest. It will have places for local brochures and business cards.

We wish to thank All-Gas of Hartford for providing heat inside the rink for warming up our volunteers and Jimmy’s Pizza, Point Grove Road, Southwick, for feeding them on Saturdays. We encourage you to get involved with our projects and see what we’re doing to provide a safe place for your children to enjoy. Take a look at our websites and keep up with what’s happening. View Babb’s wish list (www.babbsrink.org) and consider donating some of the materials we need. We’re constantly looking for sponsors for building materials and cash donations. We can’t do everything with nothing, but we can do a lot with a little! Come by for a visit and see what’s going on.

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 651, Southwick, MA 01077.


Babb’s Update
April 2009, by Linda M. Champagney

Our town is fortunate to have so many properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Babb’s Beach Amusement Park is one of them. As spring has arrived, here’s an update of what we’ve accomplished so far, and what we’re looking forward to doing.

Probably our biggest accomplishment this year was the installation of the last of the windows in the perimeter area. The walls had all been taken down and rebuilt and the new windows installed and the roof (except for the standing seam metal roof we anticipate putting on when financially feasible) installed to enclose the rink and keep the weather at bay. Work has gone on inside the rink over the winter, including the ceiling of the perimeter area and the bathroom areas and snack bar, etc. There is a lot of work left to do.

We’re still in need of skilled framers with equipment. We’re about to build out the main entry for the porch overhang. Our next big task would be to install sonotubes and frame in the arcade and Party Room 2 to tie in the Northwest and the corners of the building. We anticipate that will use up the rest of the materials on hand, and we’ll need money to install the lower roof, as mentioned above, and money for plumbing, electrical, lighting, etc. We’d like to get the siding on as well. The upper windows, which have 13 panes and are considered architecturally significant, need to be re-glazed. If you’re handy along those lines, we can use your help. We also need to jack up and re-support the stage to reinforce and bring up to code the rear of the building. It may seem like the building is coming along slowly, but we’d rather do things right than do things twice.

Of course there’s always outdoor work to do on the grounds, whether it’s to clean up where the snowplows have torn up the grass or made mud tracks in the grounds, or over where the house used to be, there are broken pieces of glass and other debris that needs to be cleaned up. Please bring your rakes and shovels any Saturday morning or Sunday afternoon.

Our many historical properties are a source of great pride to the residents of Suffield and West Suffield, and we hope to see more of you this spring and summer helping to restore this one. The rink is open every Saturday morning and Sunday afternoon for work parties, but you may also just come to take a peek and see how we’re doing. If you’re in a position to make a donation of cash or materials, or labor, skilled or unskilled, so much the better! However, no one will force you to work if you don’t want to, so come in and take a look. If you then become inspired, fine. If not, fine. We’ll be happy to see you either way.

Please remember: This is an all-volunteer effort. The more volunteers, the sooner it’ll open. And we’re ALL looking forward to that day!


Retro skating rink being rebuilt
Source: Westfield Evening News, April 11, 2008

Read the complete article here


CRC News (February 2009)
By Linda M. Champagney

Hearts and flowers, daydreaming of spring, waking up to gas augers on the lake… It must be February! The CRC Board is hard at work on the agenda for 2009 and all the events we hope to support. First up is the 2nd Annual Ice Fishing Derby on February 7th! Check the website for details.

In the meantime, progress continues at Babb’s over the winter, and you can stop in any weekend to see what’s up. We have a warm-up room, courtesy of Aero All-Gas, and work continues indoors. Why not spend a few minutes on a Saturday morning or a Sunday afternoon to see what’s happening? You might even feel inclined to help. If each of us helped just one day out of the whole year, we’d really get this project rolling in a hurry.

The Babb’s Project Funding Group is hard at work on grant applications. Our next objective is to get the lower roof finished. If you haven’t been out to see the rink since the project began, you’ll be pretty impressed at the progress made. As a very wise former band director of mine once said, “To stop is to go backwards.” Not an option.

Our first open CRC meeting will be on April 14th, and the Board is trying to nail down which events will be scheduled at what times. If there are any events you’d especially like to see us do, please contact us via the website.

Be careful out there, and remember whatever you put on the ice ends up in the lake when it melts. You could be the one who steps on it while you’re swimming next summer.

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.
 


CRC News - November 2008
By Linda M. Champagney

Autumn’s glorious burst of color fades into November’s calm before the snow. Ice fishermen await the first ice while those in boats squeeze in as many trips out before taking their boats out of the water as the weather will allow. And the final CRC meeting of the season, including elections for Secretary and Treasurer, brought renewed excitement for events still on the schedule. We’re not done yet, folks!

Next up is Button Up Babb’s! This event is an invitation to you, the Community, to help rebuild history. How often do you get a chance like that? The Historic Babb’s Roller Skating Rink, listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2006, is a community resource, so we seek to rally the community to come button it up for the winter so that work may continue indoors over the colder months. What do we need? Carpenters with tools and equipment, a framing crew for a day would be greatly appreciated, and just plain folks, with or without carpentry skills, who could be carpenter helpers for a day to pull nails, sweep, install joist hangers, move materials, or any other tasks that present themselves. What’s in it for you? Free lunch! Perhaps you’ll learn a new skill in the process of helping out. Camaraderie. Fun! And the good feeling that comes from being a part of your community in action. We start at 8 a.m. on Saturday, November 8th. If you’ve ever admired the Amish for pitching in and helping their neighbor raise a barn, we’re not doing anything that requires being up so high, but the need is there to enclose the rink and protect the skating floor from the weather. If you’re thinking you’re too young, too old, too unskilled, you’re not. Our current volunteers range from age 10 to age 79. There is something you can do to help. We’ll be looking for you on the 8th.

December 6th brings our Holiday Party at The Cove. For $35/person, you will receive a sumptuous dinner in a beautifully decorated building, followed by great dance music from the ‘40’s to the present by a great DJ. Keep an eye on our website for ticket locations.

January 24, 2009 is our 2nd annual ice fishing derby. There will be cash prizes. Stay tuned for more details!

CRC is pleased to announce that Pam LaBarre has once again agreed to be our Secretary, and was unanimously reelected. We’re in need of a Treasurer, though. Our thanks go to Betty Ayotte, who just stepped down as our interim Treasurer. She improved our bookkeeping greatly.

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.


July 9, 2008
See Photos from CRC's Boat Parade Sat. July 5, 2008


July & August 2008 CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney

Summer is in full swing on Congamond, and we’ve had our first events for this season. Thank you to all of our volunteers who reported for Lake Clean Up and Beautification Day on Saturday, June 7th. Some folks were dispatched to the canal, others found some debris in North Pond, but for the most part, people have been more thoughtful, so Beautification became the order of the day. When you see the attractive plantings at the North Boat Ramp, and other areas, think of Janeene Crane and her Beautification Team.

The lake was treated for invasive weeds on May 27th. About 30 acres were treated, including South Pond on the East side from 168 to the CT cove, and the west side of Middle Pond from the North boat ramp south to about opposite the sandbar. At this point, if you have weeds around your dock, they’re native.

Connecticut’s Department of Tourism’s annual state-wide Historical Buildings Open House was June 14th and our own Babb’s Roller Skating Rink, as well as the entire Babb’s property, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was included. Thanks to all who visited! We had a work day that day, as usual, so people could see work in progress, ask questions, reminisce, and view the “Reflections on Congamond” DVD. Scott Feron, our Babb’s Project Manager, took visitors in stride as always, and our Hospitality Team, including Phyllis Dunn, was on hand to welcome guests.

Next up is The Boat Parade, Saturday, July 5. We’ll be sailing from Saunders Boat Livery at 6 pm! The theme is Vikings on Congamond and as always, just being in the parade is free. However, if you’d like your craft to be judged, there is a $5 registration fee. Register online at www.congamond.org or at Designer’s Edge Salon and Spa, or on the day of the parade at the old town beach , Berkshire Avenue, Southwick.

Also coming up on August 9th is our extremely popular Poker Run. If you’d like to be a sponsor, your business or family name will be displayed on a banner all summer at Crabby Joe’s. Be sure and check our website for details!

September 1 will see the return of Cruise Congamond, Kevin Maloney’s awesome car show! We had a blast last year with an amazing number of cars, visitors, music and food. You won’t want to miss that!

Our last CRC meeting featured Ann Capra, speaking on Lake Friendly Landscaping. Remember, if you buy fertilizer for your lawn, it’s eventually going to end up in the lake. If you absolutely have to use it, be sure the middle number (phosphorous) is zero. Best to avoid it altogether.

Our next CRC Meeting is July 8th, 7:30 pm at Crabby Joe’s, and our speaker will be educating us on Dark Sky lighting around the lake. Everyone is welcome!


The Babb Skating Rink Restoration Benefit

Saturday, June 21, 2008*
1-6PM

Print a Flyer

On the Grounds of the Historic
Babb’s Roller Skating Rink
West Suffield, CT

Free Admission to Art Show & Sale
Wine Tasting $10 per person

*Rain Date Sunday June 22nd


Babb’s Update for June 4, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday June 7th, 2008 8:00 am to noon'ish
  • Sunday June 8th, 2008 12:00 noon- 4pm'ish

Saturday
We will continue working on the Rink while others are volunteering for our annual Lake Cleanup. We can use your help at both functions. For more info on other volunteer projects please visit www.Congamond.org

Sunday
Interior work may proceed with our Town of Suffield Permit # 08-00286

The light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter by the day!

Volunteers wishing to help out at times other than the above, please call Scott 860.982.7342

We have a special need for framers and/or Carpenters with rough framing skills tools and equipment!

Our guest book has NEW messages since May 17th; please visit read them and add to the History of Babb's. Visitors are always welcome to come and reminisce! Please visit our guest book

We had 5 volunteers this weekend. The weather was great and so ..... We forged ahead. Last weekend we closed in the roof over the snack bar / restroom area. The felt paper was installed to keep the weather out. We took down the temporary walls associated with that area, thus opening up the rink floor even more!

I invited George Hasting our Fire Marshall to do a preliminary walk thru. He showed where we should place fire extinguishers. Steve Ferrari and Dave Machete stopped by to see our continued progress, and to look at the stage. Steve is also loaning us fire extinguishers to have on hand during construction. We still have a lot of work to do before the Stage Restoration can be done. This is good Rainy day work.

We still have visitors occasionally stopping and walking around touring the project. Feel free to come by and watch as we continue with this Historical Restoration. This weekends visitors: Gloria Rosetti and Dan Segee who were both former skaters. Gloria has offered to do a dance fundraiser for Babb's! I look forward to talking with her and getting her ideas. If anyone is interested we could start another committee!

With more framing / carpenter volunteers we could have another team plumb up the southwest wall, and install these rafters and associated bridging. We could have this area of the shed closed in by the end of June!

We're on a roll here.... let's keep it moving. This weekend looks great. I hope to see a lot of folks this weekend with air tools and associated skills which are always appreciated!

The Babb's Road Show is on the move!

We have put together a presentation to show our continued progress, including the history of the rink and the lake to show other civic organizations in the area. If you're interested in seeing our presentation, please contact Jerry Crane at: 860-668-5783 or respond to this email.

To date we have presented the Babb's Road Show to the Suffield Woman’s Club & Suffield Rotary.

Thank you!

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks our volunteer photographer: Bob Billieux

Babb's Restoration Committee


June 2008 CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney

Are you ready? I hope so, because CRC plans a full schedule of events this year, we’re just getting started, and we hope to see you there!

Our May 13 meeting was well-attended and included two presentations, one by Friends of The Suffield Library on plans for the new building and why we need one, the other by Southwick Police Chief and Harbormaster, Mark Krynicki on the Local Permitting Process and Lake Patrols. We look forward to next month’s meeting on June 10th at 7:30 at Crabby Joe’s Bar & Grill, when our speaker will be Ann Capra speaking on lake friendly landscaping.

On June 7th, please join us at the North Boat Ramp (near Louie B’s) for our annual lake cleanup and beautification event. We’ll start at 8 a.m. and go until about noon, with coffee and doughnuts for our volunteers. This is a worthwhile event and it helps keep our lake clean and obstruction free. The more, the merrier!

In conjunction with the CT Department of Tourism, we’ll host our annual Babb’s Rink Open House on Saturday, June 14th from 8-4 pm. Please stop in to see all the progress we’ve made over the last year, and to view the DVD, “Reflections on Congamond,” which is a collection of memories from senior residents of the area about the lake.

June 21st will see something new: An Art Show/Sale and Wine Tasting at the Babb’s Rink property. This runs from 1-6 pm, with free admission for the Art Show/Sale, and $10 for the Wine Tasting. Ginny Graves is in charge of this event and we look forward to her success. All profits benefit the Babb’s Project. Please join us for the art, the wine, the lovely view, and hopefully the first of many events like this.

Throughout the month of June, Kevin Maloney’s Membership Committee will send volunteers into the lake neighborhoods to encourage membership in Citizens Restoring Congamond. You may not be aware that CRC has spent over $93,000 on lake treatments and programs since 2001. The cost of these programs is divided among Southwick, Suffield, and CRC equally. The CRC share is funded by memberships and donations. A household membership is only $25.

Remember that there are Babb’s Work Days scheduled every Saturday from 8-noonish and every Sunday from noon-4-ish. Come by to help, come by to peek, come by to share your memories. Just come on by! We’re still looking for framers/carpenters. Please also bring your tools.

In case you’re working on your entry for the July 5th boat parade, the chosen theme is Vikings on Congamond!

Lots more events coming for this year! Please join us at our next meeting and join in the fun! All of our meetings are open to the public. Come and see what we’re up to!

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.


Babb’s Update for May 7, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday May 10, 2008 8:00 am to noon'ish
  • Sunday April 11, 2008 12:00 noon- 4pm'ish

Volunteers wishing to help out at times other than the above, please call Scott 860.982.7342

We're on a roll here.... let's keep it moving. This weekend looks a little damp; however there is plenty of work to do inside. I hope to see a lot of folks this weekend with air tools and associated skills which are always appreciated!

With more framing / carpenter volunteers we could have another team plumb up the southwest wall, and install these rafters and associated bridging. We could have this shed closed in by the end of May!

We have a special need for framers and/or Carpenters with rough framing skills tools and equipment!

We had 5 volunteers this weekend. The weather wasn't the best yet we forged ahead. Last weekend Craig Keough and Roy Johnson continued working on the transition of the East shed and the Mens Room area roofing. Bill Norcross continued his demolition and prep work on the left side of the stage. We still have visitors occasionally stopping and walking around touring the project. This weekend’s visitors were passing thru from New York City back to Maine and decided to take a slight detour to see the progress being made.

The Babb's Road Show is on the move! We have put together a presentation to show our continued progress, including the history of the rink and the lake to show other civic organizations in the area. Recently we put on a show for the Suffield Rotary. If you're interested in seeing our presentation, please contact Jerry Crane at: 860-668-5783 or respond to this email.

Our guest book has messages however nothing since March 8th though, please visit read them and add to the History of Babb's. Visitors are always welcome to come and reminisce! Please visit our guest book www.babbsrink.org

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks our volunteer photographer: Bob Billieux and Craig Keough

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for April 30, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday May 3, 2008 8:00 am to noon'ish
  • Sunday April 4, 2008 12:00 noon- 4pm'ish

Great news…. We have received our complete building permit to allow the interior rebuilding to begin! Town of Suffield Permit # 08-00286

Special thank you to Ted Cutler and his team from Tecton Architects of Hartford CT., for working with all the local and state agencies to make this happen. The light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter by the day!

Volunteers wishing to help out times other than the above, please call Scott 860.982.7342

We have a special need for framers and/or Carpenters with rough framing skills tools and equipment!

Visitors are always welcome to come and reminisce also! Please visit our guest book www.babbsrink.org

We had 5 volunteers this weekend. The weather was great 79 degrees and sunny YES!!!!!! Last weekend Craig & Cindy began installing the plywood on the roof over the bathrooms / snack bar area, with the 5/8" plywood and clips. Roy Johnson is diligently working on the custom cuts needed for the east gable end of the bathroom roof not only on Saturday but Sunday too, with his wife looking on from the car, occasionally walking around with other visitors and touring the project.

With more framing / carpenter volunteers we could have another team plumb up the southwest wall, and install these rafters and associated bridging. We could have this shed closed in by the end of May!

We're on a roll here.... let's keep it moving. This weekend looks a little damp; however there is plenty of work to do inside. I hope to see a lot of folks this weekend with air tools and associated skills which are always appreciated!

The Babb's Road Show is on the move. We have put together a presentation to show our continued progress, including the history of the rink and the lake to show other civic organizations in the area. If you're interested in seeing our presentation, please contact Jerry Crane at: 860-668-5783 or respond to this email.

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Babb's Restoration Committee


Retro skating rink being rebuilt
Source: Westfield Evening News, April 11, 2008

Read the complete article here

Retro skating rink being rebuilt
By CHRIS PUTZ, Staff Writer
WEST SUFFIELD. CONN.

Scott Feron, of Suffield, Conn., project manager for the Babb‘s Roller Rink restoration project points to an area of the former rink that will feature a new concession stand once renovations are complete. The former Babb‘s Roller Rink landmark has been closed since 1996 and has presently been under restoration for the past five years.( Photo by Frederick Gore)

There are distant sounds of Big Bands the likes of Artie Shaw and the Dorsey brothers wafting through the air across Congamond Lake as volunteers continue to resurrect one of the area's historical venues, Babb's Roller Skating Rink.

As one walks around the plywood, insulation, and windows piled high inside the old building, the dust settles and it becomes apparent that there is something magical at work here.

Slowly, but with much determination, volunteers have begun to restore the lakeside facility that once held ballroom dancing in the 1930’s and - as the era nf Big Bands faded - became a skating rink nearly a decade later.

A nail here, a timber there, and the structure slowly begins to resemble the one that brought generations of people from Southwick, West Suffield, and neighboring communities together under one roof.

Close to a half dozen or so volunteers have been contributing their time - mainly on weekends - for the past five years helping to restore Babb's Roller Skating Rink. From pulling and hammering nails to sweeping or clearing debris to installing ledger boards and rafters, there is no project too tough for the team of volunteers that make- up Citizens Restoring Congamond. "I have a passion for quality craftsmanship which you don't see any more." said Scott Feron, who has donated his time for the last three years since an accident derailed his career. "And, now, to be involved with a project like this - I'm speechless." Feron is the site manager for the project.

Thus far, much of the structure has been gutted with non-conforming sheet rock and old wiring removed, and walls have been reframed as volunteers continue to recreate the outer shell of the building.

Memories set to come alive
Above, a stockpile of construction material now fills the inside of Babb`s Roller Rink in West Suffield, Conn., where hundreds of volunteers are working to restore the former landmark. Right, "sweetheart" graffiti from decades ago was revealed as the inside walls of the practice rink were dismantled for restoration. Below right, this stage was the home for many local bands which provided music for dancing at the site. Below center, the original seating that was first purchased by owner Nelson Babb and recently obtained from the Lincoln Theater in Springfield awaits restoration. Below left, hundreds of old serving containers were found when the concession stand was dismantled. (Photos by Frederick Gore) Above, an old sign indicating Babb's Beach and dancing was discovered after volunteers cleaned an outside storage building. Right, workers continue to restore the "practice rink" room that will now be home to private parties. Below, work continues on the outside of the structure.

Grants and donations, in the form of materials and money, have enabled volunteers to further their efforts, but those monies have quickly eroded. "We need $900,000 more to finish the building," said Feron. "Residents of the area around the lakes don't want to see it go down the pipes."If people, businesses, and the like come forward with financial donations and six to 10 volunteers continue to dedicate about 16 hours a weekend of their time for the next year or so, Feron said the roller skating rink, which closed in 1996,
would reopen in October 2009.

With nearly 6,000 square feet and an occupancy of 1,108, Babb's Roll Skating is being redesigned as much more than just a skating rink. According to design plans created by Tecton Architects, Inc., of Hartford. Conn., the rink is also expected to house lectures, exhibitions, movies, and dance productions. An activity room, gallery, two party rooms, arcade, snack bar, lounge, and skate rental area is planned. LED lighting, neon lighting, and reflective lights are expected to enhance the setting. The facility will also be fully handicap-accessible.

But, at this point, the main concern for volunteers is removing the interior ceiling and the electrical wiring, a big undertaking, according to Feron. "No one in their wildest dreams knew (this project) would be this involved," Feron said. When the time comes, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing jobs will be bid out to contractors and will be the remaining
focus of the project, in addition to the upper roof portion of the building. For the time being, Citizens Restoring Congamond is planning a list of fund raising efforts to keep their dream of restoring Babb's alive.

Anyone wishing to become a volunteer is asked to contact Scott Feron at (860)-982-7342 or see www.babbsrink.org

Read the complete article here


CRC News - April 2008
By Linda M. Champagney

Lake activity is increasing by leaps and bounds as the sunshine and flowers entice everyone back outdoors. At our Post-Hibernation meeting on April 8th, we noted the room was packed and enthusiasm and interest were evident.

April and May will see our membership committee encouraging new memberships and renewing existing ones. CRC members voted and approved our $7500 operating budget for this year, which is funded entirely by memberships. If you’re able to contribute more than the standard $25 for dues, you should know that for donations of $100 or more, you will join the Captain’s Club, and for donations of $250 or more, you will become a member of the Admiral’s Club. Remember that your donations are tax deductible.


A concern was expressed about certain people visiting certain establishments by boat and returning home at 2 a.m. Sound travels extremely well over water and especially in the silence at that hour. Patrols would be appreciated and are necessary to preserve the peace. If you are out there at these hours, please abide by the rules and be respectful of lakeside property owners.

Future CRC meetings will feature speakers on various subjects of interest. In May we will host the Friends of Suffield Library who will explain the plans for the new building. In June, landscaping and lighting on the Lake.

Scott Feron thanked all the volunteers, especially Tom Talamini and Rick Crosby, who have helped at Babb’s in all weather this winter. There was a propane heater donated so people could warm up and in foul weather there was work to do inside the rink. The east side is enclosed and we continue to work on enclosing the shed roof. Framers and carpenters are still badly needed! Please join us on Saturdays from 8-noon, Sundays from noon to 4:00 or so, and if you can come at other times, please call Scott. His number is on the website, www.babbsrink.org. Please see the website for our guest book feature, where you can share your memories, and check out work pictures and updates.

The annual lake cleanup is planned for Saturday June 7th, and we will host an Open House at the rink in conjunction with the other CT Department of Tourism Open Houses. Stop in on June 14th and see all the progress that has been made!

Our next meeting is Tuesday, May 13th at Crabby Joe’s Bar & Grill at 7:30 pm downstairs. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to come and be a part of the fun! We’re looking for people to be involved on the various activities, as well as to fill a board position for funding options. See you there!

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093. 


Babb’s Update for April 1, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday April 5, 2008 8:00 am to noon'ish
  • Sunday April 6, 2008 12:00 noon- 4pm'ish 

Volunteers wishing to help out times other than the above, or have questions, please call Scott 860.982.7342

We still have a special need for framers and/or carpenters with rough framing skills tools and equipment!

We had 8 volunteers this past weekend and we installed the last of the new rafters over the bathroom / snack bar area, and built the interior bearing wall associated with these rafters. Special Thanks to Ed Malley and Josh Branson!

Some volunteers pulled nails from the old timbers and another team worked on cleanup, raking and sweeping.

I will not be here this weekend so Steve Schmid and Tim Pratt will continue to install bridging to the rafters over the snack bar / bathroom area and install hurricane clips to the eaves in this same area. Also square up the rafters and install 5/8" plywood with clips and cover with 30# felt.

With more framing / carpenter volunteers we could have another team plum up the southwest wall, and install these rafters and associated bridging. The ledger beam has been bolted to the main building so this can be accomplished.

Steve & Tim hope to see a lot of folks this weekend!

Thank you!
Babb's Restoration Committee 


Babb’s Update for Mar. 27, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday March 29, 2008 8:00 am to noon'ish
  • Sunday March 30, 2008 12:00 noon- 4pm'ish

Volunteers wishing to help out times other than the above, please call Scott 860.982.7342

We have a special need for framers and/or carpenters with rough framing skills tools and equipment!

On Easter weekend, including Sunday, we pressed on installing more rafters. We had 8 volunteers and made it about 2/3 the way across the bathroom area. Another team worked on cleanup, raking and sweeping.

The weather looks good ahead and we will continue hanging the rafters over the snack bar / bathroom area.

The next item is to build the interior wall associated with these rafters.

With enough volunteers, tools and equipment we can have another team plum up the south wall, and install these rafters.

The ledger beam has been bolted to the main building so this can be accomplished.

I hope to see a lot of folks this weekend!

Thanks you!

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions - 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Babb's Restoration Committee 


Babb’s Update for Mar. 19, 2008:

Even though it’s Easter weekend….. We’re still working:

Saturday March 22, 2008 8:00 am to noon'ish

Sunday March 23, 2008 12:00 noon- 4pm'ish Happy Easter!

Volunteers wishing to help at times other than the above, please call Scott 860.982.7342

We have a special need for framers and/or carpenters with rough framing skills, tools and equipment!

This weekend I would like to see us finish hanging the rafters over the snack bar / bathroom area, build the interior wall associated with these rafters. The ledger beam has been bolted to the main building so we can continue with the rafters and get the lower shed area enclosed.

All this can be done in multiple teams.

There is sweeping to be done inside and windows on the north wall to be reframed, and installed.

I hope to see a lot of folks this weekend!

Thank you!

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Babb's Restoration Committee


CRC News - Friday, 14 Mar 2008
By Linda M. Champagney

The lake is melting. Spring is here. Really! And with spring comes our first CRC meeting at 7:30 pm on April 8th at Crabby Joe’s. The Board is meeting ahead of time to organize some of the activities we plan for this year and begin to form committees that will get started on the night of the meeting to hit the ground running! We’ll be having our Membership Drive in April and May, Lake Clean-up in June, the ever-popular Boat Parade in July, another Poker Run, another Car Show, both of which were very popular events last year, and we hope to hear your wonderful ideas for more events.

Thank you to Corey Gauthier, who conducted the Ice Fishing Derby on North Pond on March 1 in the snowstorm. Yes, it snowed the entire time, which apparently didn’t dampen the spirits of the entrants. First place went to Chuck Dumeer (2 lbs. 9 oz.); 2nd place to Brien Aylward (2 lbs., 6 oz.); and 3rd prize was won by Larry Sway (2 lbs., 1 oz.).

Some members of the Babb’s Project Committee spoke at the Suffield Women’s Club Meeting, telling of the history of the property, as well as of progress made and what is needed to continue. The presentation was well-received. It was a pleasure to speak to such an interested audience.

Speaking of the Babb’s Project, we’re still in need of framers, so if you have that skill, please do drop by the rink and guide our volunteers in the proper techniques. Saturdays we’re there from 8-noonish, and Sundays from noon to 4-ish. If you can come at another time, or if you have questions, please call Scott. His number is on the www.babbsrink.org website. Also on the Babb’s website is a new feature: a Guestbook where you may write your memories, etc. And we also have a Wish List where you can see what we need and possibly donate something on our list.

We’re looking forward to seeing YOU at the April 8th CRC meeting!
Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization, dedicated to the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.


Babb’s Update for Mar. 13, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday March 15, 2008 8:00 am to noon'ish
  • Sunday March 16, 2008 12:00 noon- 4pm'ish

We still have a special need for framers and/or carpenters with rough framing skills!

This weekend I would like to see us finish hanging the rafters over the snack bar / bathroom area, build the interior wall associated with these rafters. The ledger beam has been bolted to the main building so we can continue with the rafters and get the lower shed area enclosed.

All this can be done in multiple teams.

There is sweeping to be done inside and windows on the north wall to be reframed, and installed.

I hope to see a lot of folks this weekend!

Thank you!

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Mar. 5, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday March 7th 2008 8am-Noon or later if volunteers can stay!
  • Sunday March 8th, 2008 12:noon- or earlier and or later as your schedules allow.

We have spent quite a bit of time shoveling this winter, I hope we have a great turnout so we can close in the shed (Lower) roof. We have already sent out the Invitation to Bidders for the Lower standing seam roof, and we had 2 units of 5/8 Plywood delieverd last thursday for the roof. Now what we really need is an all out group effort to finish closing in the lower area.

If anyone has time other than whats posted ... please don't hesitate to call

Thank You,
Scott 860-982-7342

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Feb. 27, 2008:

Next scheduled work party:

  • Saturday March 1, 2008 8am to noonish
  • Sunday March 2, 2008 10:am- 2pm'ish

We have a special need for framers and/or carpenters with rough framing skills!

This weekend I would like to see us finish hanging the rafters over the snack bar / bathroom area, build the interior wall associated with these rafters. We also need to continue installing the lag bolts binding the ledger beam to the main rink bldg.

As the crew continues to do the bolting others may work on the southwest wall. It needs to be plumbed up and readied for new rafters.

All this can be done in multiple teams.

If the weather is not safe to work outside..... We can continue building the west wall inside and carry it out into place as we have in the past.

There is sweeping to be done inside and windows on the north wall to be reframed, and installed.

I hope to see a lot of folks this weekend!

We were all plowed out from the big storm, by Rick LaBarre, Nick ? and James Grannells.

Thanks you!

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Feb. 8, 2008:

Next Work Party: Saturday Feb. 9th and Sunday Feb 10th 8am-Noon'ish

This year brings new faces. We have 3 new volunteers so far in 2008. Last weekend we were able to continue framing on the traditional main entrance. Come visit us on Saturdays and Sundays 8am-12noon, the rink will be open to visitors while the other volunteers are working. We can always use more volunteers! Especially rough framers / carpenters to help close in the lower roof area.

This weekend we will be working on rebuilding the bathroom / snack bar area.

Outside work:
Ed from EJM Construction will be our forman on Saturday.
Adjust Rafter template and build new wall to support the rafters over the rest rooms / snack bar.
Install Bolts on the ledger board.
Install collar ties in the Main Entrance Rafters

Inside work:
Sweeping, pull nails on the recycled wood pile including the large timbers, that’s next to the table saw.

Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to this year’s volunteer photographer: Bob Billieux

Babb's Restoration Committee


News - Feb. 5, 2008

The Babb’s Rink restoration committee will be hosting an update at the Kent Memorial Library in Suffield this Monday the 11th. Starting at 7:00 pm we will be presenting how & why CRC is involved with the rink and the overall plan for the improvement and opening of the entire park, including the beach. Representatives from the town will also be in attendance to help with the presentation and answer your questions. This will be a great opportunity to see for yourself what is happening at this historic property… (Did you know it’s on the National Register of Historic Places??) and find out what the plan is to bring it back to its original glory.

Hope to see you on Monday
Babb’s Rink Restoration Committee


CRC News - January 2008
By Linda M. Champagney

In the snow-shrouded stillness of winter, when hibernation is the name of the game in many cases (football, basketball, or hockey in others), the intrepid volunteers continue to work on the Babb’s Project. We’ve made considerable progress considering the fact that when the project began, we were thinking of sprucing up the place, cleaning, updating the electrical, and painting. Our current need is for framers. We need someone to guide our volunteer workforce in framing the lower shed roof around the outside of the building. If you are a carpenter or framer, please come to Babb’s to help us out. If you’re available on a Saturday or Sunday morning, we’re there from 8-noon. If you’d rather come during the week, that can also be arranged. Just call Jerry at 860-668-5783, or contact us through the Babb’s web site, www.babbsrink.org.

Are you curious about what’s going on at Babb’s? Please join us on Monday, February 11 in Suffield’s Kent Memorial Library’s auditorium at 7:00 p.m. for an informational meeting on the progress on the rink, the plans for the park, and the beach. Town officials, CRC, and the architect on the project will be available to present their reports and to answer questions afterward, and we’ll also be showing “Reflections on Congamond,” a DVD presenting some history of the lake through the memories of people around the lake who grew up there, and in some cases have been there for generations.

There aren’t many invasive weeds around the lake at this time of year visible to identify, but that doesn’t mean Tom Burke and Steve Schmid have ceased all activity. Tom, our Director of Pond Ecology, has provided Steve with “tons of information” which Steve is now trying to wade through. In addition, Steve is taking a 15-part online course through the EPA on watershed management. Tom has provided Steve with some very detailed books on weed identification in preparation for working with Tom to identify those suspicious weeds you’ll be asking about come spring. Tom and Steve will be working together regarding runoff around the lake, water clarity and quality, and weed identification. Steve says he has a long way to go to learn even a little of the information that Tom knows.

CRC’s Board of Directors and the Babb’s Restoration Committee continue to meet over the winter, discussing fundraising ideas and project plans. Before you know it, the annual CRC Winter Vacation trip (this year to Curacao) will be over and our first CRC Meeting of the year will take place in April. We’re looking forward to another sparkling year on the lake. We hope you’ll join us!

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly authorized Non-Profit organization. You may contact us at www.congamond.org or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.


Babb’s Update for Dec. 25, 2007:

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Next Scheduled Work Party Sat. January 5th and Sun. the 6th 2008, 8Am- Noon.

This year we had accomplishments, and disappointments. We had many volunteers in the beginning of the year and we were able to get a lot done. However it does seem like we get more volunteers after the holidays, and thru the winter! We hope that trend continues!

As work progressed, we found we needed a 'lil more professional guidance. Going back to the towns building department to check proper procedures, we found we needed to hire an architect. This might have seemed to be a long set back, yet we stepped back, took another look and moved forward.

In the end we hired Tecton Architects of Hartford CT. Ted Cutler along with his team spent many hours at the rink. They went over what we had accomplished, worked up our vision allowing us once again to move forward with a complete set of architectural drawings.

Then came a leak in the upper roof! Our roofing contractor, Jim Shields of Shields Enclosures Inc. Southwick MA., along with his partner Adam Quenneville of Adam Quenneville Roofing Inc. of South Hadley MA got the job of installing new shingles done, overcoming many scheduling delays. Thank you both for your patience! The rink roof was believed to have only 3 layers of old shingles, when in fact it had 4. Their team ripped all the old shingles off the rink roof and replaced the damaged sub structure. The roof has now been replaced with a 50 year architectural shingle! It really looks great!

Now that the upper roof has been replaced, we can work our way down to the shed roof and so we did. We even had a volunteer from California that is thinking of relocating his family to Suffield! Jerry McMahon came and shared his carpentry knowledge with us for a few days. Thanks Jerry! I hope we made a good impression!

Now on to the ledger board...... remember the ledger board? Well it was finished off by our mystery crew…. Ok, they're not exactly a mystery, but these guys came to work on the rink weekdays after they got off work from their regular jobs. So by the weekend, other volunteers wondered who did the job.

The rafters we put in place quite some time ago on the east wall were ready for the bridging, plywood and 30# felt. Tyvek was installed on the walls and .....................wait for it... ; the first of the new windows were installed!! Now all the windows as well as another temporary exit door have been installed. We were finally able to see the first of the temporary walls come down.

Moving right along to the south side of the shed area. In order for us to make the move, we needed a little more help. Clayton Cigal of Cigal Masonry Inc. Southwick Mass. came to our aid. Clayton and his crew were able to install some concrete blocks as needed, thus allowing us to begin framing the south shed area over the bathrooms and snack bar!

We also had volunteers install the State of Connecticut Sign. Using a bobcat and an auger on loan from B.R.F. Inc Windsor Locks… Thanks Ben! Paint and supplies for the State Sign was donated by Family True Value Hardware in Granby CT. Thanks Pete!

We also want to thank All-Gas Company in Hartford CT, for providing temporary heat for our volunteers to warm up… Thank you, Tom!!

We hope to see a lot of visitors sharing their memories of dancing, skating, and swimming in the lake this coming year of 2008. There is a lot of interest here, lets keep the momentum going! There are sooooo many people to thank, visitors who came from afar, some like Ernest Schneider of Bristol CT., who helped not only moving and stacking lumber.... but sharing memories of he and his wife and the wonderful times they had at Babb's.

We have the entire staff of the Town of Suffield for believing in this project. Especially Patrick McMahon and Scott Lingenfelter. Then on to Gary Pitcock from the State of Connecticut .......... Thank you all.

Special Note: Please feel free to call Scott Feron if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to this year’s volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Happy Holidays & We hope to see you all back again next year!
Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Oct. 18, 2007:

Work Party: Sat 10-20.
Morning showers clearing throughout the day. Low: 55. High: 69.

We have a lot of work to do to get the building closed in for the winter. We need lots of help with framing. If you’re experienced with this please consider helping.

Thank you all for all your time and dedication. Last weekend we had 7 volunteers and began installing the bridging on the east side of the building.

Stop by some Saturday

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Oct. 3, 2007:

This has been a very busy and exciting week at the rink! The rink now has a beautiful new architectural 50 year roof thanks to Jimmy Shields www.ShieldsEnclosures.com  and Adam Quenneville Roofing. www.1800NewRoof.net 

This week we also had volunteers install the State of Connecticut sign.

Equipment and supplies for the sign were donated by:

Family True Value Hardware in Granby CT. for paint and supplies. Thanks Pete!

B.R.F. Inc Windsor Locks for the use of a bobcat auger Thanks Ben!

We had 2 volunteers show up this past Saturday. Even though there was no scheduled work party! Roy Johnson was able to continue the sign painting project he started without the roofers bothering him. Thank You Roy!

A couple of weeks ago, our team started in the old woman’s bathroom and skate repair section of the rink. We started to prep this area for new fire stops and a firewall to be built. This will also be done on the other side of the platform as well as many points around the rink.

We are all looking forward to the Tag Sale / Flea Market / Craft Sale this weekend on the rink grounds. I hope to see a lot of shoppers and visitors with lawn chairs overlooking the lake.

Now we need to keep our momentum going strong and close in the rink. We have wood, windows and materials... just need more volunteers.... winter is coming fast... lets close in the building so we can continue to work inside when it gets cold!

Next Scheduled Work Party Saturday, 10-6, 8Am- Noon

Bring your carpentry and or lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

Indoor Work:

Cut up bridging to be installed on the shed roof rafters, also cut up and install fire stops around the rink.

Outside work:

Install bridging onto east side rafters, Install 5/8" plywood onto east side rafters. Install felt paper onto the plywood for weather protection.

Install tyvex on east wall.

The next large project is to brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.

Pick up debris and place in dumpsters. Sweeping/Raking.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Please feel free to call Scott if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Sep 21, 2007:

We now have the roof permit!
The shingles have been moved back to the rink and installation is scheduled to start Monday 9/24/07
Starting at approx. 9:00 am
Spectators Welcome!
Come see the new roof installation. I've been busy getting ready for this, and that’s why my bulletins have been a 'lil late.
Scott, Babb's Building Committee
 

 Next Scheduled Work Party Saturday, 9-22-07, 8am-Noon

Sorry for the short notice, it’s been a very active week!

Saturday: Mostly sunny, breezy, warm, and more humid. A slight chance for a shower or thunderstorm in the late afternoon or evening. Low: 60. High: 85.

Bring your carpentry and or lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

We had 4 volunteers this past Saturday. Thank You!
Come share stories, there is work to be done inside and out.

Last weeks team finished preparing the old woman’s bathroom and skate repair section of the rink to make ready for the air-conditioning equipment. We started to prep this area for new fire stops to be built. This will also be done on the other side of the platform as well as many points around thee rink. Safety First!

The surveyors have stakes around the property. Please be cautious of them. They are flagged with ribbon.

As you know, the town of Suffield Parks & Rec. has solicited for a study, architectural rendering and site plan of the entire Babb’s Park. This week the interviews were held and we had a tough choice to make after all the presentations were made. Tecton Architects move on to the next level.

Special Note:
Check the Bulletin board for work to be done on non-scheduled workdays. Don't forget to sign-in!
Please feel free to call Scott if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Indoor Work:
If it does rain we can layout the west shed wall. This can be built and placed out of the way of the roofers there are also more fire stops to be cut and installed. More headers to be installed on the north wall.
Sweeping and general cleanup.

Outside work:
The next large project is to brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.
Pick up debris and place in dumpsters. Sweeping/Raking.
There is still some, debris...etc that needs to be cleared from the back of the rink.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!
Please visit the website at www.BabbsRink.org to view our continued progress and our wish list!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers:
Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Sep 13, 2007:

Next Scheduled Work Party Saturday, 9-15-07, 8am-Noon
Weather: A chance of showers in the morning, then becoming mostly sunny. Highs in the lower 70s. Northwest winds 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 50 percent.

Bring your carpentry and or lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

We had 4 volunteers this past Saturday. Thank You!
Come share stories, there is work to be done inside and out.

Last weeks team started in the old woman’s bathroom and skate repair section of the rink. We started to prep this area for new fire stops to be built. This will also be done on the other side of the platform as well as many points around thee rink. Safety First!

We had a great turn out for the 1st Cruise Congamond held at the rink. Many folks wanted to know if we were going to have a car show every month! It was awesome to see countless people with their lawn chairs camped out overlooking the lake. There is a lot of interest here, lets keep the momentum going! Many folks came in for the open house at the rink, sharing their stories and learning about the Restoration Project. We also had the video “Reflections of Congamond” playing at the open house. In the end we actually had to turn people away.

During this week you may have seen some caution tape across the driveway, we had some volunteers working on the backside of the rink taking down some of the small trees and didn't want visitors to get hurt. Once again..... Safety First! The surveyors have stakes around the property. Please be cautious of them. They are flagged with ribbon.

As you know, the town of Suffield Parks & Rec. has solicited for a study, architectural rendering and site plan of the entire Babb’s Park. Approximately 15 Landscape Architects came to get a walk thru of the property. This is the beginning stage of a project to develop the park as a whole, keeping the rural atmosphere intact. The town has many steps to take so look for updates. The bids are in and are being reviewed and interviews are being scheduled.

Our volunteers did some weed trimming and general cleanup on the north side of the Rink. There is still a lot to do!

Special Note:
Check the Bulletin board for work to be done on non-scheduled workdays. Don't forget to sign-in!
Please feel free to call Scott if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

Indoor Work:
If it does rain we can layout the west shed wall. This can be built and placed out of the way of the roofers there are also more fire stops to be cut and installed. More headers to be installed on the north wall.
Sweeping and general cleanup.

Outside work:
The next large project is to brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.
Pick up debris and place in dumpsters. Sweeping/Raking.
There is still some, debris...etc that needs to be cleared from the back of the rink.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Aug 22, 2007:

Next Scheduled Work Party Saturday, 8-25-07, 8am-Noon

Weather: Partly cloudy, hot and humid… Slight chance for a late day thunderstorm. Low: 70. High: 91.

Bring your carpentry and or lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

We had 6 volunteers this past Saturday. Thank You!

Come share stories, we will be working all around the rink inside and out.

Our team removed the old arcade floor and piers; this will make it easier for the new piers to be installed.

We exposed the remaining base sideboards of the multipurpose room. It is clear to see the way the old piers have deteriorated. These parts of the old building we found were only set upon cinder blocks thus leaving the multi purpose room in such disrepair.

The town of Suffield Parks & Rec. has solicited for a study, architectural rendering and site plan of the entire Babb’s Park.

Approximately 15 Landscape Architects came to get a walk thru of the property last week. This is the beginning stage of a project to develop the park as a whole, keeping the rural atmosphere intact. The town has many steps to take so look for updates.

This weekend we will be setting up and designating areas to be roped off for safety reasons, as we have the first annual CRC Cruise Day on Sunday September 2nd, and a Tag Sale in October at the rink. We will be offering tours of the rink.

Look for Southwick Comcast Channel 15 for an updated interview as well as next issue of the Suffield/Southwick news.

Our volunteers did some weed trimming and general cleanup on the north side of the Rink. There is still a lot to do!

The surveyors have put more stakes around the property. Please be cautious of them. They are flagged with ribbon.

 

Special Note:

Check the Bulletin board for work to be done on non-scheduled workdays. Don't forget to sign-in!

Please feel free to call Scott if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342


Indoor Work:

If it does rain we can layout the west shed wall. This can be built and placed out of the way of the roofers.

Sweeping and general cleanup.


Outside work:

The next large project is to brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.

Pick up debris and place in dumpsters. Sweeping/Raking.

There is still some, screens, wire...etc that needs to be cleared from the back of the rink.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Don't Forget the Cardboard Boat Races at Louie B's Sunday!  http://www.louiebs.com/id10.html

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for Aug 2, 2007:

Next Scheduled Work Party 8-4-07 Saturday 8am-Noon

Drive right in COME TO THE LAKE SIDE OF THE BUILDING TO FIND US!

We had 6 volunteers last weekend! Thank-you.

Our volunteers cleaned up and reorganized some items inside the rink. We are getting ready to start installing more of the shed roof as soon as the upper roof is completed. The old fans still work and we had them working to move out the dust we created while cleaning.

Our mystery framers were on hand even in the rain to help out this weekend. They built a temporary endwall that can be used to close in the shed area as we remove the temporary walls from around the rink and install that plywood up on the new shed rafters.

Some weed trimming and general cleanup on the north side of the Rink and park is working out great. The more we get done, the faster the upper roof can be done with no obstructions.

It's always nice to see folks stop by and chat of old times. Some have shared their stories while others are working.... it helps pass the time away!

You will see some Grade Stakes in the Lawn area. Please be cautious of them. They are flagged with ribbon. Please stay clear of them.

Special Note:
Check the Bulletin board for work to be done on non-scheduled work
days. Don't forget to sign-in!
Please feel free to call Scott if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

As we progress you will see our Architect and their team do occasional
on-site inspections.

Bring your Carpentry tools and or Lawn tools including chain saws and
lawn trimmers if you have them!

Saturday: Partly to mostly sunny. Hot, but turning a little less humid. Low: 68. High:

Indoor Work:
Sweeping and general cleanup.


Outside work:

Demolish the old Arcade platform and put in dumpsters.

If it does Rain we can layout the west shed wall. Build it and keep it aside. This can be built and placed out of the way of the roofers.

There is still some, screens, wire...etc that needs to be cleared from the back of the rink.

Brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.

Pick up debris and place in dumpsters

Sweeping / Raking Bring them if you have them.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE!, who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for July 24, 2007:

Next Scheduled Work Party 7-28-07 Saturday 8am-Noon

Drive right in COME TO THE LAKE SIDE OF THE BUILDING TO FIND US!

We had 5 volunteers last weekend…. Thank-you!
It's always nice to see folks stop by and chat of old times. Some have shared their stories while others are working.
Our mystery framers came by once again to do additional work on the ledger board. It looks like the end is near for that!

One of our local companies donated some additional safety gloves, glasses and other supplies.
SAFETY IS VERY IMPORTANT! Thank You Mark!

The weed trimming and general cleanup on the north side of the rink and park is working out great. The more we get done, the faster the upper roof can be done with no obstructions.

You will see some grade stakes in the lawn area. Please be cautious of them. They are flagged with ribbon.

Special Note:
Check the Bulletin board for work to be done on non-scheduled workdays. Don't forget to sign-in!
Please feel free to call Scott if you have any questions 860-982-7342

As we progress you will see our Architect and their team do occasional on-site inspections.

Bring your carpentry and/or lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

Saturday: Mostly cloudy and humid. Showers and thunderstorms likely. Low: 69. High: 85.

Indoor Work:
Sweeping and general cleanup.

Outside work:
Demolish the old arcade platform and put in dumpsters.

If it does rain we can layout the west shed wall. Build it and keep it aside. This can be built and placed out of the way of the roofers.

There is still some, screens, wire...etc that needs to be cleared from the back of the rink.

Brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.

Sweeping / Raking. Bring them if you have them.

Nice Surprise!
If you read this far I thought it was only fair to give you some good news.
On Thursday July 19 the application for a roof permit was officially filed accompanied by a stamped set of drawings as requested.
We hope to have the actual permit in approximately 7 days. I have spoken to the contractor and they could have a crew on-site within 7-10 days of obtaining the permit. Stay tuned for Eureka! This will be the Babb’s Update when we have the roof permit.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for July 17, 2007:

Next Scheduled Work Party 7-21-07 Saturday 8am-Noon

Drive right in COME TO THE LAKE SIDE OF THE BUILDING TO FIND US!

We had 9 volunteers last weekend! Thank-you!

Visitors came by to see all the progress. One was just on a bike hike from Granby.

It's always nice to see folks stop by and chat. Some have shared their stories while others are working.

One of our Local Companies donated some additional safety gloves, glasses and other supplies.

SAFETY IS VERY IMPORTANT! Thank You Kevin!

Our mystery crew trimmed the plywood and installed the first layer of the ledger board on the west wall

This was done on yet another non-scheduled work day. Thanks once again and great job!

You will see some grade stakes in the lawn area. Please be cautious of them. They are flagged with ribbon. Please stay clear of them.

Some weed trimming and cleanup around the Rink and park is working out great.
 

Special Note:

Check the Bulletin board for work to be done on non-scheduled workdays. Don't forget to sign-in!

Please feel free to call Scott if you have ANY questions 860-982-7342

As we progress you will see our architect and their team do occasional on-site inspections.

Bring your carpentry tools and or Lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

Saturday: Mostly cloudy with lingering showers possible to start, then becoming partly cloudy during the afternoon.

Low: 66. High: 82.

Indoor Work:

Sweeping and general cleanup.

Outside work:

Continue installing the ledger board on the south wall and hopefully the west wall also!

Demolish the old arcade platform and put in dumpsters.

If it does rain we can layout the west shed wall. Build it and keep it aside. This can be built and placed out of the way of the roofers.

Brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.

There is still some, screens, wire...etc that needs to be cleared from the back of the rink.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE, who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for June 27, 2007:

Next Scheduled Work Party 7-14-07 Saturday 8AM to noon

COME TO THE LAKE SIDE OF THE BUILDING TO FIND US!

We had 6 volunteers last weekend! Thank-you!

Our mystery crew installed plywood on the west wall on another non-scheduled, mid-week work day! This was the first step. Next is to trim it off and then install the ledger board. I see they have their lines in place and ready to go!

The other work around the rear base of the building was completed! Thanks Bill!

The holes were dug along various points of the foundation / slab to see actual footings etc....

You will see some grade stakes in the lawn area. Please be cautious of them. They are flagged with ribbon. Please stay clear of them.

Some folks stopped to see what’s going on! They'll be back....

Special Note:

Check the Bulletin board for work to be done on non-scheduled work days. Don't forget to sign-in!

As we progress you will see our architect and their team do occasional on-site inspections.

Bring your carpentry tools and or lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

Saturday:
Some morning clouds then partly to mostly sunny. Low: 60. High: 82.

Indoor Work:

Sweeping and general cleanup

Continue framing the west wall

Outside work:

Continue installing the ledger board on the south wall and hopefully the west wall also!

We may now be able to layout the west shed wall. Build it and keep it aside.

Brace up and replace old timbers on the north side of the building as necessary. We are still recycling the timbers from the old shed structure.

The multipurpose room is 1 3/4" - 4 1/4" out of Level. To level the floor and bring it to the same level of the main building may be more than what we thought. We are working with the architect on possible options for the multipurpose room. We may put a full foundation under it for future storage… Just a thought at this point!

There is still some, screens, wire...etc that needs to be cleared from the back of the rink.

Pick up debris and place in dumpsters. Sweeping / Raking… Bring them if you have them.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE! who have given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for June 27, 2007

Next Scheduled Work Party 6-30-07 Saturday 8AM to noon
Saturday: Partly cloudy, slight chance for an isolated afternoon t-storm. Low: 54. High: 79.

Come help us close out June with another great progress report.

We had another awesome progressive work party last weekend. Our crew filled up a 40 yard dumpster with debris from all around the rink. However there is still more to clear out!

Another crew did weed trimming around the rink. This keeps the new construction upbeat and not looking like an abandoned building.

Yet another crew took down the temporary walls on the west side to prep the area for the new ledger beam. We also started putting up the tyvek house wrap on some of the south wall.

Special Note:

We have a new bulletin board mounted outside the door of the Multi-purpose room. (It’s the smaller building on the lake side of the

Rink.) Please feel free to check it for work to be done and a sign in sheet for volunteers doing work outside of the scheduled work days

Another Note:

Donations of Safety supplies are needed and requested to be replaced. Gloves, dust-masks, etc. for Volunteers. Please contact Scott to arrange for pick up if needed 860-982-7342


As we progress you will see our Architect and their team do occasional on-site inspections.

Bring your carpentry tools and or lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

Indoor Work:
Sweeping and general cleanup.
Continue framing the West Wall

Outside work:
Continue installing the ledger board on the south wall and hopefully, the West Wall too!

There is still some, screens, wood and debris under the back of the rink, the old arcade and the multi-purpose rink that needs to be removed.

The multipurpose room is 1 3/4" - 4 1/4" out of Level. To level the floor and bring it to the same level of the main building. This will ultimately mean hand digging and pouring 15 new concrete piers and replacing the posts as necessary.

We also need to dig down on the concrete piers of the main building as well as the multi-purpose building to check actual depth and foundation.

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for June 22, 2007:

Next Scheduled Work Party - 6-23-07 Saturday 8AM to noon

Saturday: A beautiful day! Mostly sunny and breezy with very low humidity.

Sunday: Partly sunny with a slight chance for a shower or thunderstorm.

Special Notes:

We have a new bulletin board mounted outside the Multi-purpose room. Please feel free to check it for work to be done and a sign in sheet for volunteers doing work outside of the scheduled work party days

Donations of safety supplies are needed and requested to be replaced. Gloves, dust-masks, etc. for volunteers. Please contact Scott to arrange for pick up if needed 860-982-7342

We had another great progressive Work Party last weekend. We were able to begin building the last window section on the south wall, west end and raising the window header into place. We had some additional cleanup on site, keeping safety in mind. We also set the marks with a laser-level for the west wall ledger beam to be installed.

As we progress you will see our Architect and their team do occasional on-site inspections. We have a conference table and chairs on loan from the Feron family, for on-site meetings.

One new volunteer suggested the Army Corp of Engineers is always looking for construction projects to allow their team to work. So if we have any site work to be done in the future, we may want to keep this in the back of our minds.

The Lake clean up went well and if anyone still sees flyer's posted please take them down ...... we might have missed a few!

SPECIAL THANKS !! to SUFFIELD HARDWARE FOR PROVIDING THE STAPLES TO POST FLYER'S ON THE EAST SIDE OF ALL 3 PONDS of Lake Congamond

Bring your Carpentry tools and or Lawn tools including chain saws and lawn trimmers if you have them!

Indoor Work:
Sweeping and general cleanup.

Outside work:

We are now ready to FINISH installing the new ledger board on the south wall and hopefully the West Wall too!

Walk the north slope of the building and remove the debris so we can clear the underbrush. We want to clear the area of rocks, bottles, metal, etc for safe operation of Cals brush cutting equipment.

We have wood and debris under the rink, old arcade and the multi-purpose rink that needs to be removed and placed in dumpster.

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE! who have given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux Barry Roberts

Babb's Restoration Committee 


Babb’s Update for June 14, 2007:

Thanks to all that helped with the lake clean-up last Saturday. Even with the rink worked cancelled due to the clean-up we were still able to get some tasks accomplished. The past couple of weekends have been productive and we even had some volunteers working Wednesday afternoon. We continue to work on the installation of the new ledger board across the South wall.

Teams have walked the hill behind the rink removing debris to allow Cal Chunglo to come back with his machine and clear away the underbrush.

We shored up the front overhang of the old arcade building. The door was hung on the practice rink.

We had a meeting with CL&P as well as Northeast Utilities. They walked the area with us to gain a better perspective of our future electrical needs. We will continue to follow up.

We also had a meeting with the new architect, Ted Cutler from Tecton Architects, to discuss critical items to be addressed. Our focus is still with the upper roof drawings to permit. Updates as we get them!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Barry Roberts & Bob Billieux

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for June 9, 2007:

Thanks to all that helped with the lake clean-up last Saturday. Even with the rink worked cancelled due to the clean-up we were still able to get some tasks accomplished. The past couple of weekends have been productive and we even had some volunteers working Wednesday afternoon. We continue to work on the installation of the new ledger board across the South wall.

Teams have walked the hill behind the rink removing debris to allow Cal Chunglo to come back with his machine and clear away the underbrush.

We shored up the front overhang of the old arcade building. The door was hung on the practice rink.

We had a meeting with CL&P as well as Northeast Utilities. They walked the area with us to gain a better perspective of our future electrical needs. We will continue to follow up.

We also had a meeting with the new architect, Ted Cutler from Tecton Architects, to discuss critical items to be addressed. Our focus is still with the upper roof drawings to permit. Updates as we get them!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Barry Roberts & Bob Billieux

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update for May 5, 2007:

We had a small contingent of volunteers Saturday; however they were able to walk the North Slope on the back side of the rink to clear debris. We will coordinate with Cal Chunglo to clear the brush in the coming weeks.

The Journal Inquirer of Manchester CT. came out to see our volunteers in action! I hope they were able to shoot some good photos.

Bob also took some additional photos of the old arcade building and grounds.

The volunteers from the Suffield Congregational Church will be in contact with us in the near future to assist in the cleanup of debris from under the old practice rink etc.

The bids are in for the new Architect.

The drawings are to be completed by 7-30-07

The next step is for the informal interview with the Bidders, the town and our selection committee.

Special Note:
Donations of Safety supplies are needed and requested to be replaced. Gloves, dust masks, etc. for Volunteers. Please contact Scott to arrange for pick up if needed 860-982-7342

Next Scheduled Work Party Saturday, 5-12-07 8AM
Saturday: Low: 52. High: 73.
Sunday (Mother’s Day): Low: 39. High: 66.


Indoor:
Sweeping and general cleanup.
Pulling nails from old timbers, saved from demolition.


Outside:
We are now ready to install the new ledger board on the south wall!
Pick up debris and place in dumpsters
Sweeping / Raking… Bring them if you have them.
There is a lot of small debris to be raked up and placed in dumpsters.

HAPPY MOTHERS DAY!

A Special thank you to all the Mothers that have allowed their children young and old to help us in restoring the memories and dreams of this wonderful Babb's Beach project. May you truly enjoy your day!

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE! who have given their time and energy to this Historical Restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers: Bob Billieux & Barry Roberts

Babb’s Restoration Committee 


Babb’s Update April 19, 2007:

Work Party this weekend Saturday April 21st and Sunday 22nd. April brings new energy to the Rink!

Our Volunteers were able to begin building the new supports for the Shed roof on the west wall. These new headers will also serve to mirror the arches on the east wall. The work looks great! We were able to use timbers that were saved from the old shed structure.

Bring your Carpentry tools!

Saturday: Sunny. Highs in the lower 70s.
Sunday: Sunny. Highs around 70.

Indoor work:

We have 1 more support header to install on the west wall.

Re-frame west wall to accommodate new shed roof structure and arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall. Now that the area is clear of demolition debris this can be completed easier.

Outside work:

Take down the temporary walls; make adjustments and continue to install the new ledger board across the southwest wall.

Pick up debris and place in dumpsters 

Once again we would like to thank EVERYONE who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers Bob Billieux and Barry Roberts. There are many photos on the site now and more coming from a disc that Barry made.

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update April 5, 2007:

March '07 closed out with the majority of the south east wall being framed and raised into place. We also braced up the west wall from inside to allow for additional supports to be built to receive the shed roof rafters.

Some volunteers opened up the multipurpose room and began building a temporary door for construction access

Spring is in the air, so we removed the tar paper from around the rink to allow some fresh air ventilation.

Work party this weekend Saturday 8:00 to noon

Saturday: Mostly cloudy with a chance for flurries. Continued breezy and cold. Low: 25. High: 40.

Easter Sunday: Partly to mostly cloudy. Breezy and cold. Low: 25. High: 43.

Outside work:

Take down the temporary walls; make adjustments and continue to install the new ledger board across the southwest wall.

Pick up debris and place in dumpsters

Indoor:

Re-frame west wall to accommodate new SHED ROOF structure and arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall. Now that the area is clear of demolition debris this can be completed easier.

Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers Bob Billieux and Barry Roberts. There are many photos on the site now and more coming from a disc that Barry made.

Babb’s Restoration Committee


CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney
Sun, 15 Apr 2007

Wow! CRC’s new year is starting off with a bang! If you weren’t at our first meeting, you missed a lot of enthusiasm. Committees are forming now for some fun events and you don’t want to miss out! This promises to be a great summer for everyone.

Our annual Lake Clean-up and Beautification event is June 9th, North Boat Ramp, 8 a.m. Bring work gloves. As each year goes by, we spend more time beautifying than cleaning, and that’s great. Many hands make light work, so please join us.

Dennis Goldie announced the annual Boat Parade’s theme: “Pirates of the Congamond.” Judges will be at the North Boat Ramp pier. The event will begin at Saunders’ cove with the singing of the National Anthem (any singers out there?) at 6:00 pm. Aye, Matey, as usual, the boat parade itself requires no doubloons to enter, but if you want your boat to be judged, an entry fee will apply. Thanks to everyone who participated last year, $1,250 was made. The parade committee meets weekly on Thursdays. Contact us at the website if you’d like to be involved. More details follow!

Dick Grannells reports that the tunnel between Middle and South Ponds is half done. The old tunnel remains open until the new one is finished, which should be in mid-June.

Jerry Crane tells us 25 people went to the Dominican Republic on the annual CRC vacation and had a great time! They’re looking into next year’s destination. Golf and a casino are being considered for inclusion in the plans, and Costa Rica’s Pacific Coast is a preliminary possibility. As always, all-inclusives are being considered.

We’ve made a lot of progress on the Babb’s project, the property is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, we need more people to help each Saturday and most Sundays, and remember that the reason behind the Babb’s Project is to make it a consistent fundraiser for the CRC’s prime directive: lake maintenance activities. The movie director has agreed to postpone filming the Babb’s scenes until October so as to give us more time to get things together. A “Big Tag Sale” is being planned, date to be determined. Start putting aside those treasures! Spaces will be for sale for $15 ahead of the sale, and $20 the day of, all proceeds to benefit the Babb’s Project.

See you at the next CRC meeting, May 8th, 7:30 pm, Crabby Joe’s. This is your lake. Get involved!

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly recognized, volunteer, non-profit organization dedicated to the betterment of the Congamond Lakes. We can be reached at www.congamond.org, or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.
 


Babb’s Update March 29, 2007:

We're Back!

Work Party this weekend: Saturday March 31st 8am / Sunday April 1st…. No Joke! 8 am

Saturday: Mostly sunny. High: 60.

Sunday: Mostly cloudy and cooler with a chance for rain. High: 52.

Outside work:

Take down the temporary walls; make adjustments and continue to install the new ledger board across the southwest wall.

Pick up debris and place in dumpsters

Sweeping / Raking… Bring them if you have them.

Indoor:
Reframe west wall to accommodate new arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall. Now that the area is clear of demolition debris this can be completed easier.

Sweeping

Install insulation on walls

Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration! See ya in the Movies!

Special thanks to our volunteer photographers Bob Billieux and Barry Roberts. There are many photos on the site now and more coming from a disc that Barry made.

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update March 15, 2007:

NO WORK PARTY Saturday or Sunday March 17th or 18th

All of our building crew supervisors, have other obligations this weekend. We also have a Winter Storm on our horizon. We are expecting a lot of rain today followed by a Nor' Easter Friday into Saturday .... With 6"-7" of SNOW!!!

For the first time this winter....We can ALL take a break!

We will regroup next weekend!

HAPPY ST. PATRICKS DAY!

Parade in Hartford 11:00 am

Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thank you to our volunteer photographers Bob Billieux and Barry Roberts. There are many photos on the site now and more coming from a disc that Barry made.

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update March 1, 2007:

Next Work Party: Saturday and Sunday March 10th & 11th 8AM

Saturday: Increasing cloudiness with a chance for rain showers toward evening. Turning milder. Low: 22. High: 46.

Sunday: Lingering rain or snow showers in the morning, then partly sunny and mild. Low: 33. High: 50.


Outside work:

We will install the plywood on and raise up 50' of the NEW south west wall at 10am we will need a lot of volunteers to help lift this into place.

We will NOT be building any more walls until after the upper roof is replaced. This will be approximately 2 weeks. Don't despair... there's still plenty to do! Just watch for our updates.


Take down the temporary walls; make adjustments and Continue to install the new ledger board across the southwest wall.

Indoor:

Reframe west wall to accommodate new arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall. Now that the area is clear of demolition debris this can be completed easier.

Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Special thank you to our volunteer photographers Bob Billieux and Barry Roberts. There are many photos on the site now and more coming from a disc that Barry made.

See ya in the Movies!

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update March 1, 2007:

The month of February concluded with our 8 Volunteers Raising the Old Front Entryway Wall on the south side of the building as well as building and raising into place the New West Wall of the Old Entry. We were also able to demolish and load the old arcade roof into the dumpsters. There was also another load of lumber delivered on Saturday and brought inside.

Ted Flanders came out to look over the project today Thursday March 1st, everything looks good so far. Once we get some more walls up, he'll come back for another look.

In case you haven’t heard, Babb’s is in the running to be featured in a movie. Keep your fingers crossed that Hollywood comes to West Suffield, Connecticut, on Beautiful Lake Congamond MA. It's not final yet! But we're still in the running. Just to have Babb's being considered for this is very exciting! More details to come. For those interested, we were able to take some photos of the "Attic". This is the area above the arched ceiling yet below the roof structure, showing the buildings structure. The Director and Producer were interested in this vast amount of space up there, as it would also add to their movie!

Next Work Party:

Saturday and Sunday March 3rd & 4th

Saturday: Partly sunny, then mostly cloudy during the afternoon with a chance for a rain or wet snow shower. Low: 29. High: 47.

Sunday: Partly sunny, breezy, and colder. Low: 25. High: 37.

Outside work:

We can build and raise up the NEW south west wall. This wall and all remaining walls can be built inside and carried out into place, in case of bad weather.

Build the Temporary hallway wall to receive the new rafters over the bathroom / kitchen area.

Take down the temporary walls; make adjustments and Continue to install the new ledger board across the southwest wall.

Indoor:

Reframe west wall to accommodate new arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall. Now that the area is clear of demolition debris this can be completed easier.

Special thank you to our volunteer photographers Bob Billieux and Barry Roberts. There are many photos on the site now and more coming from a disc that Barry made.

See ya in the Movies!

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update Feb. 23, 2007:

Last weekends snow storm might have looked like we wouldn't get much accomplished, however with a small crew of 5, we were able to finish the southeast hip and begin the layout of the longest rafters that will span the south hallway to the exterior of the bathroom wall.

We were able to remove the last section of the shed roof by the practice rink, and add it to the dumpster.

With the donation of a bobcat from Jim Shields, we were able to clean the slab of snow and the entire work area. This made access to the rink nice and dry.

We even had a Mystery Framer stop by this week! Someone framed up the south entrance wall. It’s ready to raise into place! Even when we're not working we're getting work done! Thanks to whomever you are!

This just goes to show the enthusiasm and dedication of our volunteers!

The bids are out to have the upper roof stripped off and replaced with a new 30- 50 year shingle. The Bid opening will be on the 28th of February 10AM. The bids will be reviewed and awarded in writing soon thereafter.

Next Work Party: February 24th and 25th

Saturday: Sunny. Highs in the lower 30s. Northwest winds around 15 mph with gusts up to 35 mph.
Saturday Night: Mostly clear. Lows 15 to 20.
Sunday: Mostly sunny in the morning, then mostly cloudy with a chance of snow in the afternoon. Highs in the mid 30s. Chance of snow 40 percent.

Outside work:

Break up / Cut up the arcade roof and stuff it in the dumpster.

Take down the temporary walls, make adjustments and continue to install the new ledger board across the southwest and west walls.

We can also frame up the west wall around the front entrance then the south west wall. These walls and all remaining walls can be built inside and carried out into place, in case of bad weather.

Indoor:


Reframe west wall to accommodate new arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall. Now that the area is clear of demolition debris this can be completed easier.


Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

CRC Winter Vacation to the Dominican Republic is March 3-10

We look forward to their refreshed energy upon their return! We'll keep working while you’re all relaxing in the sun..... Have a Great Trip!

See ya in the Movies!

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update Feb. 16, 2007:

February 10th and 11th, 2007, brought very nice working weather... temps in the 30s. We had a crew of 12 and we were able to remove the remaining 100 feet of the old piece of the shed roof. We were also able to finish and set the south east lounge wall.

The Microlams were laid out and set in place for the southeast hip. Sunday was yet another great day. We were able to remove the remaining wall section of the arcade area and then we brought down the roof. The old arcade area, once cleaned up, will be ready for new construction.

The only section of shed roof is the area straight out from the practice rink (multipurpose room) this area is now prepped for demolition. The crews are now ready to continue installing the new ledger beam and rafters.

This was yet another one of our most productive weekends! There are many great things coming up and our hope is that this pace will continue.

Next Work Party: This coming weekend the 17th and 18th.

Saturday: Partly sunny. Highs in the lower 30s. West winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph.
Saturday Night and Sunday: Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of snow showers. Lows around 15. Highs in the lower 30s.
Sunday Night and Presidents Day: Mostly cloudy. Lows around 15. Highs in the upper 20s.

Outside work:

We will need to spend some time on the south east hip, so this may slow us down a bit.

As we continue to install the new ledger board, we can continue to install lag bolts across the ledger board.
If someone has an impact gun this would be helpful.

Now that the little section of roof (pork chop), is cleaned out, we can piece in used wood siding. We have wood cut to install in this area already. With this done we can continue installing the ledger board.

We can also frame up the walls around the front entrance. These walls and all remaining walls can be built inside and carried out into place.

Indoor:

Reframe west wall to accommodate new arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall. Now that the area is clear of demolition debris this can be completed easier.

Remove, frame and board up the old window on the north wall to the right side of the stage.

Reframe the existing window on the east wall to the right side of the stage to allow for a new single window.

Remove, frame and board up the old windows on the north wall to the left side of the stage.

Remove and reframe the existing window on the west side of the left side of the stage to allow for a new window.

Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!


Babb’s Update 9 Feb 2007:

Well, we started February 2007 with a good crew. We were able to build another wall for the lounge area. We were also able to set the remaining rafters on the east wall. Now that these rafters are in place we were able to begin laying out the new interior hallway wall. On Sunday we had yet another productive day. We laid out and set the next 45lft of ledger beam in place. I know this doesn’t seem like a lot .... but come see for yourself! Cheer us on...watch us and share your stories.

Saturday: Partly sunny with a chance of flurries. Highs in the lower 30s. West winds 5 to 10 mph. Gusts up to 25 mph in the afternoon.
Saturday Night: Partly cloudy. Lows around 13. West winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph.
Sunday: Mostly sunny. Highs in the upper 20s. West winds 5 to 10 mph.

We have an ongoing list of projects to complete, and are still in need of additional volunteers. I have been deleting then as they are completed.

Outside work:

We will need to spend some time on the south east hip, so this may seem to slow us down a bit. We can have another couple of volunteers install lag bolts across the ledger board. If someone has an Impact Gun this would be helpful.

We can also continue to remove the little section of roof (Pork Chop), clean out the old roof shingles and tar in that area. Once this next section is removed, we can piece in used wood siding. We have wood cut to install in this area already. With this done we can continue installing the ledger board.

We can also frame up the walls around the front entrance.


Indoor:

Remove, frame and board up the old window on the north wall to the right side of the stage.

Reframe the existing window on the east wall to the right side of the stage to allow for a new single window.

Remove, frame and board up the old windows on the north wall to the left side of the stage.

Remove and reframe the existing window on the west side of the left side of the stage to allow for a new window.

Reframe west wall to accommodate new arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall.

Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!


Babb’s Update Jan. 31, 2007:

We closed out January 2007, a little cold but not without showing more progress. Our carpenter, Tom Talamini, came back to give a hand. Welcome back Tom! Together we were able to finish installing the top plate on the new walls and be continued to raise the new roof rafters into place. The original walls were not square with the main building and this has posed some delays, as we need to custom cut most of the rafters, to maintain a straight building line. We have the first 25 feet of rafters in place, and now the next challenge we are heading for is the south east corner HIP.

Our Indoor crew finished the tedious job of removing the sheetrock, another great accomplishment! Thanks to all who helped!

Dean Davis was on hand to give us a shopping list of electrical needs. This will allow us to work more efficiently, having more outlets and circuits to work with once this is complete. We will have temporary outlets on the east wall, midway in the South wall and additionally on the north wall by the stage.

Next scheduled work party:

Saturday February 3rd and Sunday the 4th as volunteers are available.

Weather looks favorable once again.

Bring your snow shovels and brooms, looks like light snow [x] crossed fingers!

Saturday: Partly sunny, windy, and cold. Low: 21. High: 29.

Sunday: Partly sunny, breezy, and cold. Low: 13. High: 25.

Outside work:

This weekend we hope to have the shed rafters installed to complete the east side. We will need to spend some time on the south east hip, so this may seem to slow us down a bit. We can have another couple of volunteers install lag bolts across the ledger board.

We can also continue to remove the little section of roof (Pork Chop), clean out the old roof shingles and tar in that area. Once this next section is removed, we can piece in used wood siding. With this done we can get our next true building line across the south wall, and then begin installing the new ledger board.

We can also frame up the walls around the front entrance.

Indoor:

We can continue to vacuum up the loose paint.

Remove, frame and board up the old window on the north wall to the right side of the stage.

Reframe the existing window on the east wall to the right side of the stage to allow for a new single window.

Remove, frame and board up the old windows on the north wall to the left side of the stage.

Remove and reframe the existing window on the west side of the left side of the stage to allow for a new window.

Reframe west wall to accommodate new arches. The thought is to mirror the arches on the east wall.

Once again we would like to thank everyone who has given their time and energy to this historical restoration!

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update Jan. 24, 2007:

Saturday January 20Th, we had 12 Volunteers.

We worked with the east temporary wall for the first time. We were able to take down the plywood with ease, as we had installed it with screws for just that purpose. With the temporary wall down we were able to make way for, and install, the new ledger boards. The ledger board is used to receive the new shed roof rafters. We were then able to put the temporary wall back up.

With due diligence late Saturday afternoon, Rick came back after his hockey coaching duties and this proved to be an astounding achievement. Rick spent some time laying out the new rafters the first new shed roof rafters were installed! Thank you Rick Crosby!

This paves the way for us to continue installing the rafters and plywood roof this coming weekend. We also had another crew inside the rink that continued to remove the old sheetrock. This task too, is just about completed.

Next Work Party: Saturday 1-27-07 8am and Sunday 1-28-07 as Volunteers are available.

This weekends Weather:

Saturday: Partly cloudy with a chance for flurries. Not as cold. Low: 10. High: 33.

Sunday: Partly to mostly cloudy, chance for flurries or a snow showers. Turning colder again! Low: 20. High: 31.

Outside:

Continue installing the new shed roof rafters and plywood on the east side. Cover with felt paper as needed. Demolish the remaining West side area of the shed roof by the Arcade. The Arcade walls will all be demolished also to make way for the multi-purpose room roof to be reframed and tied into the main building. This work will allow us to have the rink roof all re-done at the same time. We hope to put together a bid package soon.

Inside:

We can continue to remove the sheetrock. We have some wall repairs to do and we can also begin to layout the NEW west wall arches to mirror the rest of the rink.

Electrical:

Install new breakers and outlets

We are still in need of carpenters to assist in our re-construction. If anyone knows of a framing crew that is willing to layout and build the remaining exterior walls please contact our project manager Rick Crosby at gotabme@juno.com  or 860.982.7342 our volunteers are ready to assist!

As always we welcome donations of time, materials and safety equipment.

I encourage everyone to visit Babb's share their stories and cheer us on as we re-build the past. Visit the website www.babbsrink.org to view pictures of our continued progress.

Thank you everyone, for your continued hard volunteer work and support of this project.

Babb’s Restoration Committee


Babb’s Update Jan. 20, 2007:

Last weekend January 13Th and 14Th 2007

We had 6 volunteers on Sat. and 4 on Sunday

It rained on and off ... but that didn't stop us! We were able to build the new southeast wall in sections on the rink floor, and carry them outside into place. We added the plywood and braces.

We had a few new volunteers show up! A father and son team Mark and Craig Keough of East Granby CT. removed a lot of sheetrock and exposed more bee hives! 84 year old Ernest Schneider from Bristol, CT. helped move the windows to gain access to the left side of the stage as well as continued cleanup…. Thanks!

We have a roof leak in the old woman's bathroom area to the left of the stage. Now that we have better access there we were also able to hang some temporary lights in the area above the ceiling but below the roof. Now we and other contractors can see the ceiling structure. We have a serious mold issue with the existing ceiling. The tiles are moist and tend to be absorbent.

We had the town’s environmental company come out; Bob Roberts from New England Environmental. The ceiling tiles are not asbestos. The loose paint in the walls will need to be vacuumed up and placed in plastic bags. Then Bob's company will bring a special dumpster for that haz-mat removal. We have dust masks, gloves and safety glasses available for use as we do these various projects.

We have had contractors look at the existing roof on the rink. From the outside. It would appear that we need to replace it, and the suggestion would be to remove the existing shingles and replace the plywood or sub structure as needed. Then install a new shingle roof. Now that we have access, contractors can inspect the roof structure from inside as well.

When the decision is made this may have to go to bid thru the Town of Suffield. I encourage potential contractors to contact the Bill Norcross wrnorcross@cox.net to be placed on the bidders list.

Interior Ceiling:

Bill and I met with a couple of ceiling contractors at the rink. We have a few options.

1. Replace the bad tiles with pegboard because these tiles are no longer manufactured. Spray on a kilz type product to seal and cover the stains, then spray on the fire retardant and then spray on the paint. This would have a 1 year warranty!

Note: the Architect, John Morgan, tested the existing ceiling panels and doesn't believe they will withstand the additional weight of these applications. I Agree! I have tried this in the past with another job, same type ceiling. After painting ........ The tiles absorb like a sponge and they start to peal apart because they are fibrous panel and can’t withstand the additional weight.

2. Install a drop ceiling, however it would be boxed in certain areas because of the contoured ceiling. Wherever boxed... would create shadows with lighting.

3. Hang a new drop ceiling FLAT across the rink just above the stage following the line above the 13 pane windows.

4. Revert back to the original design and have no interior ceiling panels.

We still need an electrician to install new breakers and outlets

We are still in need of carpenters to assist in our re-construction. If anyone knows of a framing crew that is willing to layout and build the remaining exterior walls please contact our project mgr. at gotabme@juno.com  or 860.982.7342 our volunteers are ready to assist!

As always we welcome donations of time, materials and safety equipment.

I encourage everyone to visit the website www.babbsrink.org to view pictures of our continued progress.

Thank you everyone, for your continued hard volunteer work and support of this project.


CRC News
By Linda M. Champagney
(Mon, 15 Jan 2007, article for the February issue of the Suffield Observer)

We started the new year off with a bang! Volunteers have been hard at work continuing the reconstruction at Babb’s. Exterior walls are going up, interior sheetrock is coming down, bids are out for roofing, volunteers of all ages and abilities are showing up and pitching in. Won’t you be one of them? We’ve been working on Saturdays and Sundays while the weather holds. When it rains, we work inside, for the most part. Usually it’s too cold by now, but since we’ve had such mild weather, the work continues!

Saturday, January 13 saw two new pieces of the south wall built inside the rink, carried out, put up and nailed into place, encompassing both bathrooms and the concession stand. Fifty percent of the old sheetrock has been taken down. Two of the old speaker stands have been removed, since newer speakers are much smaller. The outer walls will continue to be built and put up as long as volunteers are available to help.

While we were taking down the lower “shed” roof by hand, Cal Chunglo of Southwick came by with his machine with a grappling claw and within a day and a half, the project was complete. The Town of Suffield took 4 dumpsters full of debris away as a result. As fast as we filled them, the Town hauled them away.

The Town of Suffield has also been getting a lot of inquiries as to when Babb’s Beach will be open, which has caused them to look into the possibility of reopening the beach this summer. Cross your fingers!

I hope you all received your copy of the Airport News, which the Town of Suffield mailed to you. On the back page, they paid for a full-page ad about the rink. It’s great to have their constant support.

Visitors continue to stop by and tell us their stories. Recently a couple from Pennsylvania, who met at Babb’s, while skating in 1942, were in the area visiting family and came to the rink to see what was going on. We are very interested in stories of how people met at Babb’s, so if you have one, please contact me at P.O. Box 148, West Suffield, CT 06093. You are a part of Babb’s history, and we’d like to document your story for future generations.

As always, everyone’s help is greatly appreciated! This is our opportunity to make a difference in our town. There’s plenty to do and as long as the weather allows, we’ll be there.

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly recognized, volunteer, non-profit organization dedicated to the betterment of the Congamond Lakes. We can be reached at www.congamond.org , or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093.


Babb’s Update Jan. 11, 2007:

We had yet another very productive Volunteer Work Party last weekend January 6th and 7th. We were able to build the new south east corner walls. They may not look like much, however because of the floor being pitched away from the rink in 3 different directions in that corner it creates additional challenges. Other volunteers were working on removing sheetrock on the interior of the rink, as well as restacking the new wood to allow for better access for continued demo / reconstruction. We had a team of 12 on Saturday and Sunday. Our volunteers came from as far away as Bristol CT. 1.25 hrs south of the Rink.

We have had visitors on both days, folks that have come to share there stories from days gone by! They were all amazed at the restoration of the rink and how far along its come! They can’t wait to come and skate or watch the younger generation carry on a fine tradition.

Channel 15 from Southwick was there to do a TV interview on Sat. This interview will be shown probably Friday 1-12-07. The Westfield News shot a lot of film and will be doing a story this week. We also had interviews with CBS TV 3 from Springfield.

On Tuesday 1-9-07, Bill Norcross and I had a meeting with another contractor with reference to replacing the ceiling. We are looking at the ceiling being done this spring.

Next Work Party:

Saturday, January 13 at 8am.

Continue re-building new walls

Continue interior demo and prep work.

Bring your tools and equipment, Cameras, old music, pictures, ...... most importantly YOU!

Spectators welcome to continue to cheer us on!

Thank You to everyone that has donated, cash, time, energy, and experience. Your memories and passion fuel our vision to a beautiful restoration!


Babb’s Update Jan. 2 2007:

December brought a lot of accomplishment. We were not only able to demolish the majority of the shed area around the rink, we began reconstruction! The first of the NEW walls was built and raised into place. The East wall and the short North East wall are in place and anchored. There was a tremendous amount of support for the demo / cleanup. Yet we still have a NEED for more help in the reconstruction. We are well under way for a 2007 Re-Opening, let’s keep the momentum going. The Weather looks good for this weekend. There is work to do indoor and outside either way.

Next Work Party: Saturday January 6th 8 AM

Outside work:

Finish removing the 2' section of shed roof and clean to allow for new construction.

Build and raise NEW Southeast Walls (Bathroom area) and if time and crew allows the South Entrance area.

Inside work:

Restack lumber up on wood away from exterior walls and off direct contact with the rink floor

Repair Southeast wall slightly damaged during demo of the SHED roof.

Remove ALL sheetrock to allow for insulation.

I know you'll all have spring fever and want to come help this weekend! There is enough work to do SAT. and (Sunday Optional)

Bring your tools and equipment!

Thanks for all your participation. Lets make this a Great start to 2007

See you Saturday 8 AM!

Spectators welcome to cheer us on!


Dec. 22, 2006Help Restore the Historic Babb's Roller Rink (click the photo to open the PDF document)

The board of Citizens Restoring Congamond wishes all of our members the happiest of Holidays. We also want to thank all the wonderful volunteers that helped with events this past year. Without your help and support we couldn’t accomplish all we do.

A final thank you also to the volunteers that worked hundreds of man-hours at that Babb’s Roller Rink this year. Things are really shaping up…. If you haven’t seen the progress we’ve made, stop by for a look.

As a final note, for your enjoyment, here is a full page ad appearing in the current issue of the Airport News paid for by the town of Suffield Department of Economic Development. Please send along this link to anyone on your email list that might be interested.

Thanks again, and have a safe and happy holiday,

CRC


15 Dec 2006 - Babb’s Update

We had an unscheduled Work Party Friday 12-8-06. We had the opportunity to accomplish a lot as we had an offer and use of a machine with a grappler claw on it. Provided by Cal Chunglo. We had a team of 5 for about 6 hours. We knocked down the shed roof from the old main entrance on the south side to the rink continuing west around the corner to the Party room area. With Cal's machine we were able to not only knock it all down, but we stuffed and filled 4 dumpsters. The remaining concrete was removed in 3 truckloads by the town. We also crushed and began to remove the old Generator Bldg.

Our scheduled Work Party was for Saturday and Sunday 12-9-06 and 12-10-06

We had a team of 9. Cal Chunglo brought his machine back and we had awesome results. All the debris was cleaned up and stuffed into dumpsters, Block from the old generator bldg were piled for removal. Rick continued the new construction of the east wall with the help of his brother Bob and nephew Matt. His family cam and showed their support as well. We had another team removing the remaining 2' section of roof where it meets the wall. All was removed from the east wall and approx 40' along the south wall. All that was in preparation for the new construction. There is a small amount of debris left to clean up.

I met with Clayton Cigal, (Cigal Masonry) he is loaning us some staging to facilitate our work. We also discussed and scheduled the reconstruction of the masonry cap on the existing foundation wall in the Bathroom / Kitchen area. He rebuilt this on Tuesday and Wednesday. This will allow us to continue our new framing. Clay was also able to get epoxy anchors donated for that area, by another contractor.

Our Scheduled Sunday Work Party was basically a bust! However we more than made up for it with all that was accomplished.

The Next Scheduled Work Party is for Saturday 12-16-06 8am and (Sunday 12-17-06 9am as needed or Volunteers allow)

We have a 200amp service however we keep popping the breaker. (Electrical Help Needed)

We will continue to remove the 2' section of remaining shed roof.

Raise the New East Wall! And begin framing the end walls. We may need to begin removing the Temp Wall as we raise the new, and secure the rink as we go.

WE NEED 8+ strong bodies to raise the new wall. Even if you can only make it for a couple hours. Anytime you can give is greatly appreciated.

Remove some old sheetrock from the interior of the rink.

After this Weekend There is no Scheduled Work Party until after the NEW YEAR!

Scott L. Feron


8 Dec 2006 - report from Scott:

Today we had a crew of 5 including a Grapple Machine and operator. Special thanks to Cal Chunglo !! Great Job Today!!!

We demolished the Shed Roof all the way to the Play room on the west wall. We filled 4 yes...... 4 dumpsters!!! Most of the debris is in the dumpsters. We still have a lot of small debris to cleanup this weekend as well as a need for a good Framing Crew. We cleared it all out ... Let's put it back together now!

Bring your friends!

Please bring rakes, shovels, hand tools , power tools, everything you can! There is a lot to do this weekend!

Thank you all for all you have done to keep this project going! I look forward to seeing you all this weekend!

Saturday 8am December 9th 2006
Sunday 9am December 10th 2006

Scott L. Feron
 

Update: Babb's Work Party Weekend December 2-3, 2006

We had a very productive weekend. Saturday 8am-4pm and Sunday 7am-4pm a larger turnout of about 10 volunteers total this weekend. Not everyone could stay all those hours, everyone gave the time they could and its graciously appreciated. There were enough folks here to keep the momentum going. We were able to remove a substantial amount of the shed roof structure and break it up and fill 2 1/2 dumpsters. The town emptied the dumpster as soon as we filled it! We were able to seal the base of the Temp walls with caulking also.

Can you believe this!!!!... The NEW FRAMING FOR THE SHED ROOF HAS BEGUN!!!! Rick Crosby took the reigns, laid out and began to build the new East Wall. This week there will be volunteers around to continue the clean up and begin the demolition of the remaining stub section of roof that protrudes over the Temp Wall. We also have a contractor to install Block needed, on top of the foundation wall By the Bathroom area also to facilitate the new walls. With this all cleared out of the way, our Next Work Party will be even more productive.

Next Scheduled Work Party: Saturday December 9th, 2006 8AM with a possible 2nd day on Sunday 12-10-06. We will decide to work Sunday as volunteers and weather allows. So far its going to be sunny and in the 40's.

Work planned:

Continue building the NEW walls. We will need 8+ strong bodies to raise the new wall. Once the New wall is up and braced, we will be removing the Temp Wall and installing a New Leger Board to receive the NEW Roof Rafters and the plywood from temp wall will now be our new Roof.

Another crew can continue to remove additional sections of the old shed roof to facilitate continued progress. There is sheetrock to be removed from the walls inside the Rink also.

Please bring your friends and family, tools hand and power, brooms shovels rakes, there's plenty for all to do.

We look forward to see you all and more folks in the coming days ahead. We have this 2day weekend and Next weekend December 16-17th, Then we BREAK for the Holidays!

A lot to do before the New Year!

Anyone wanting to help during the week, please contact Howard at 413-569-2381


26 Nov 2006

The Babb’s committee is in need of a person with masonry skills to add a topping row of brick or block to the foundation where the old bathrooms were. My guess is that it is about a 50’ total run. It seems the old concrete floor we had to remove was poured over the foundation to a thickness of about 4” so the new floor will need some concrete or brick to but-up against. This will have to be done soon, as we are out for quotes for framing right now. The weather is supposed to be mild this week and we are hoping someone will step-up & get this done. We will purchase all the material. We are hoping this labor could be a donation, but we are willing to pay someone to get it done. If interested please get back to us as soon as possible to make arrangements. Reply to this email or call Jerry at 860-668-5783.


Work Party Results for 11/18/06

Very Productive Day!

Great Team work!

With had a team of 8, we were able to remove the remaining sections of wall from below the olde windows and load them into the dumpster. We sealed the spaces where the temporary walls meet, and the Grand Finale! We demolished the first section of roof from over the old snack bar / bathroom area. We were once again able to fill the dumpster!

The Inmates will return next week. We can have them clear brush and debris from around the backside of the Rink, thus allowing for easier access for siding crews and all Re-construction to continue unobstructed. They will also be breaking up debris and filling the dumpster as needed.

We (CRC / Babb’s volunteers) have a lot of work to do to be ready for contractors to do the Re-Construction. ALL of the shed roof must be removed and where it protrudes thru the rink wall this will need to be prepped also.

Good News!

The RFP's (Request For Proposal) have gone out. The bids for Reconstruction Framing and Plumbing will be opened on wed. November 29th with work to commence within 20 days.

We need more volunteers, power tools, chain saws, sawzalls, hammers, crow bars, Caulking guns, Sheet metal Break, Fork Lift, Bobcat, mini excavator....etc .... You get the idea.... Most of all we need manpower!

We have done such a great job filling the dumpster.... we now have 2 dumpsters to fill one on each end of the Rink. This way we can have another 2 crews working on Demolition.

Schedule:

Happy Thanksgiving!

NO WORK PARTY THIS WEEKEND!

Ok I hoped you enjoyed the holiday, now Back to Work!

Next Scheduled Work Party: DECEMBER 2-3 8am

The Base of the Temporary wall needs to be sealed to the elements. We need someone with a Break (like a siding contractors Break) the old main entrance is the next phase to be demolished. Then the shed roof across the east wall towards Babb’s road. Then the Southeast shed roof, continuing down to the south west and finally the West Shed roof.

We are contemplating having work days on Sundays also. If interested in that option, please reply to this email!

We would like to thank everyone for their work and dedication to this project. We have come a long way and the end of the tunnel is getting closer. Please pass the word and bring your friends!


Nov. 11, 2006, Saturday Work Party Results:

Awesome weather! Great Progress!

Photographers were there taking many photos.

Many thanks to Barry Roberts for the attached pictures.

2 people stopped by to check out the progress.

Crew of 6:

Back screwed the temporary walls (the ends still need to be sealed in)

Cut out most sections of walls that were below the windows and load into dumpster (there are about 4 more sections to remove.)

Removed the remaining windows around the main entrance.

Removed all the exterior wood siding from around the main entrance and across the southwest wall to the east therefore exposing the stud walls in the entrance, kitchen, and the bathroom areas.

All demo debris was cleared up and loaded into the dumpster.

WORK DAY AGAIN THIS SATURDAY MORNING, NOVEMBER 18 AT 8:00

Stay tuned for further progress reports


Nov. 9, 2006

Thursday 11-9-06, Work Party Results:

The crew of 6:

Painted the temporary walls with 9 of 12 gal of paint that was donated by Barry Fedora courtesy of TNT construction of Westfield.

Removed the windows and stored them in the trailer.

Closed in and built a 2nd entry door on the south side.

Removed the Front entry doors and moved to trailer.

Removed the south side doors.

This was a very productive day and I’m looking forward to Saturdays work party.

Agenda:

Now that the main walls (temp) are up ..... We still need to back screw them. We also need to close in the corners where the walls meet the existing building. Build a temp roof over the south temp door. or seal off to the weather. Touch up painting. Id like to remove the lower walls .... the section below the where the windows were. I feel we can cut out these sections with a Chain saw and load them into the dumpster. Id like to peal back the roll paper on the shed roof to see how much work / safety issues need to be addressed prior to removing it section by section.

We're on a roll here.... lets keep going! The town has a dumpster there ... they want us to fill it up ASAP! They're concerned about others dumping couches etc..

We need help… Hope to see you there, 8am-noon, Sat. Nov 11, 2006

Scott Feron, team leader


Nov. 4, 2006

Last Saturday November the 4th

Work Day at Babb's

We were able to move the lumber and equipment from the seating area inside to the rink floor. We also were able to close in and secure the rest of the rink, in preparation for paint. We found that we would need to paint the plywood as it will be exposed to the weather, once the shed roof is dismantled and reconstructed. We still have to build a temporary emergency door for the south end of the building.

Last week we met with Jack Muska from the Town of Suffield Department of Public Works, and Angelo Dimauro, who supervises the inmate workers program. In a joint effort, we will be painting all the plywood that surrounds the rink, removing and storing all the existing windows and demolishing the shed structure.

There will be another work day at the rink on Saturday the 11th, 8:00 to noon to finish up the enclosure wall.

See you there!


5 Oct 2006

Hello

Work has progressed slowly at the rink. At the past two weekends of concrete removal only 2 or 3 people showed up. We did remove about half of the concrete, half of that into the town truck and the other half out onto the ground. We still have that much more to remove from inside. This Saturday (7th) our bobcat operator can’t make it, so we are canceling work this week. We are beginning to realize that doing this with only volunteer labor will take forever. We are looking to hire a (paid) framing crew next. If in fact we can arrange for this and get enough volunteers to remove the outer walls in time we have a chance to get the rink enclosed with new walls & roof by winter. If you are interested, or know of a professional framing crew, please reply to this email.

Hope to see some strong guys next Saturday the 14th for more concrete removal work.


24 Sep 2006

The Babb’s construction crew had another successful work day yesterday (the 23rd). We were able to totally secure the east end of the rink thanks to a large double door donated by Dean Davis… Thanks Dean! We are now ready to start demolishing the perimeter shed roof area. Don’t know exactly what the schedule will be… I’ll have more info by mid week.

Thanks to everyone who showed up for the past three Saturday’s… (In no particular order) Dean Davis, Barry Roberts, Pam LaBarre, Ken Crane, Bryan Griggs, Chris Walsh, Ginny Graves, Patrick McMahan, Henry (Buck) Fancher, Mike Piccirillo, Scott Feron, Bill Norcross, Steve Schmid, Howard Goodrow, Eileen Hamilton, Lynn & Toni Fedora, Tom Talamini, Bob Delisa, Bob Andryzeck.

Hope to add many more to this list as work progresses,

Gerry


11 Sep 2006

First, we’d like to welcome to the email list all the nice folks we met this weekend at Suffield on the Green. Glad you signed up!

Next, we want to thank the 17 volunteers that showed up for the work day at the Babb’s rink on Saturday morning and apologize to anyone who showed up to work on Sunday. With all that was going on with CRC this weekend (and after the hard work on Saturday), we just couldn’t do it. We have now scheduled work days EVERY SATURDAY, 8am ‘till noon from now on. If you can stop by any Saturday, for any amount of time, please do. We did get off to a great start in closing off the rink floor in preparation for removing & replacing the shed roof area, but still have more to do… Lots of work ahead!

Don’t forget our monthly meeting tomorrow, (Tuesday the 12th) at the Brass Rail Restaurant (near the north boat ramp) at 7:30.

Hope to see some new faces there.
CRC Board


5 Sep 2006

Hi gang
Hope you all had a great summer and a safe & fun Labor Day weekend! Time to get back to the real world.

The CRC/Babb’s committee has been unseen but busy this past year. We received our National Historic Places designation this spring, purchased almost $50,000 worth of construction material, got our architectural drawings of the rink well under way and received our first building permit that will allow us to finally start re-construction. There still is a long way to go on the background stuff, but the dam has broken. Now we really have to get the momentum going again. I know that when we “hit a brick wall” and work stopped, many folks lost interest and figured we had given up…. NOT TRUE!

We are scheduling work weekends from now until winter. The first is this Saturday & Sunday, Sept 9 & 10, 8am until about noon. We need to start closing in the rink portion of the building to allow us to remove the outer perimeter shed roof area. Next task will be to cut and remove the entire concrete floor where the bathrooms & snack bar were. We will then be in need of expert plumbing skills for the next task; re-piping the new drains. Then comes the new concrete over the new drains and the re-build the shed roof area complete with new tempered glass windows and conforming fire exits. To accomplish all this this fall will be a huge undertaking. We will need carpenters, plumbers, roofers, painters and lots of general work & clean-up crews. The town of Suffield DPW is working with us to have a prison crew on hand once in a while during the week to help, and we’re going to try to get a trade school involved (any help arranging that would be great). We really hope you will join us to help bring this great and historical building back to its former glory

On top of all this work at the rink, Saturday & Sunday CRC has an informational booth at Suffield on the Green. We really could use a few volunteers to man and/or woman the booth for a few hours each. If you would like to help with that please respond to this email, contact us thru our web site (www.congamond.org) or just show up. The hours are 8:00am to 4:00pm.

We'd also like to remind everyone of the benefit for TR & Jeannie Despard at the Brass Rail Pavilion on Saturday. I'm sure most of you know that the Despard's lost their house in a fire on August 8th. Their house was a fixture on North Pond for many years. The benefit starts at 3pm. We'll have 3 bands, food and raffles. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for kids/students 6 or older. If anyone has any raffle items they'd like to donated, bring them with you or call Steve at 413-569-4065.

Hope to see you at one of these events his weekend,

Gerry Crane,
Chair, Babb’s committee

 

Mon, 21 Aug 2006

Things have “broken loose” over the past few months… We received our National Historic Place notification and our start-up building permit. This allows us to actually start re-construction, and that’s exactly what we intend to do! We are scheduling work days at the rink for Saturday, Sept 9th & 10th, 8AM ‘till about noon, rain or shine. We are going to start to close in the rink portion of the building to secure it while the outer shed roof area is removed and replaced. We will be in need of general work hands to help sort, stack & move the lumber required, a few people experienced in framing (bring carpentry tools) and a clean up crew.

Hope to see you there.
Gerry
Join Us for a CLAM BAKE
Saturday August 26th 2PM
Sponsored by The Brass Rail Restaurant & Citizens Restoring Congamond
To help raise funds for the renovation of Babb’s Roller Skating Rink
at The Brass Rail Pavilion
Entertainment Live Bands Featuring: New Earth - Steaming Heap

Babb's Open House/Bake Sale/Can and Bottle Drive - June 10, 2006
There will be a Bake Sale in conjunction with the Babb's Open House June 10th from 10-4. We'd appreciate your donations of baked goods to sell at the rink on that day. Please contact Linda Champagney with any questions.
Also, we'll be having a can and bottle drive on that day. Please spread the word that we need your returnable cans and bottles to return for the deposit. Please contact Howard Goodrow with any questions.
Thank you for your support!

Work Day - Saturday, May 6, 2006  - See photos from the workday
from 8:00 till about noon
The Babb’s construction crew will be working at the rink on Saturday, May 6th from 8:00 till about noon. We will be enclosing/moving a few of the windows on the rear of the building. We don’t need a lot of bodies, but if you have carpentry skills and would like to help, just show up!

From courant.com
Beach May Earn Historic Designation
--------------------
By LARRY SMITH, Courant Staff Writer, March 10, 2006

SUFFIELD -- The State Historic Preservation Board Thursday approved the nomination of the Babb's Beach property on the Congamond Lakes to the National Register of Historic Places.

It is the first step in qualifying a property for the National Register. The nomination now goes to the National Park Service for consideration, officials said.

The 7-acre Babb's Beach property includes the 11,000-square-foot dance hall/roller rink building that the Citizens Restoring Congamond is restoring to its former glory. The site qualifies for the historic designation because of its significance as a popular amusement/recreation area that was several miles away from an urban center, said Patrick McMahon, economic development director for the town.

The national designation would give prestige to the site and help in the marketing and funding of the renovation, McMahon said.

"It's a celebration of all of the historic assets here in town," McMahon said.

The application for National Register status has been a joint effort between the town, which owns the Babb's Beach property, and CRC, which entered a lease with the town for the roller rink in 2003.

The town was awarded a $4,000 Historic Preservation Technical Assistance Program matching grant through the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation to help pay for a consultant to prepare the nomination.

The Public Archaeology Laboratory of Pawtucket, R.I., was chosen to research Babb's Beach history and prepare the nomination. The town and CRC worked closely with Stephen Olausen, the archaeology center's executive director, in making the case to list Babb's Beach on the National Register. The effort included an oral history from Nelson Babb, the last operator of the roller rink, which was built in 1930.

Once the nomination is submitted to the National Park Service, a decision is expected within 45 days, officials said.

Linda Champagney, chairwoman of the history committee for Babb's, spoke in favor of the application and after the vote commended the decision.

"Those of us in the lakes region know how important of a cultural asset Babb's Beach has been, and people continue to share their stories about how the dance hall and later the roller-skating rink hold a special place in their hearts," Champagney said.

Although the beach has not been used for a number of years, officials hope that once the building is restored the whole area can be used again, McMahon said. The committee has also begun purchasing building materials so that volunteers can start the construction work in the spring.

"Donations of time, materials and/or money will certainly help CRC bring this historic asset back to life for the residents of the lakes region and beyond," said Scott Feron, a member of the Babb's Beach building committee.
Copyright 2006, Hartford Courant
 

Mon, 27 Feb 2006
The Connecticut State Historic Preservation Board will consider the Babb's Rink Historical Nomination on March 9, 2006 at 9:30am. The meeting will be held at the South Congregational Church, 277 Main Street in Hartford. If you are available and interested in attending this very important meeting please join me. Any and all support would be greatly appreciated. If you'd like more information please feel free to call me at 413-569-4065 any evening.  I will send another e-mail after the meeting to let everyone know the results.
Steve Schmid
CRC

Work day Saturday, Oct. 22, 2005 at the rink 8am-NOON. It will be a light carpentry & minor demo day.

This will be in preparation to replacing the shed roof & exterior walls to the right of the entrance.
We need to pull more nails, scrape up & remove old floor tiles, remove some old wiring, take out part of the railings, patch/cover a few windows, clean-out insulation & nails overhead at the entrance way, etc.
Bring: Hammers, Crowbars, Sledge Hammers, Step Ladders. We will also need some sort of tool(s) to scrape up the tiles (Long handled scrapers of some sort).
Coffee “and” will be available.
If anyone has some scrap pieces of 3/8” or 1/2” plywood they could bring for closing in broken windows that would be great!
Hope to see you Saturday.

6-16-2005
We're scheduling a work day at Babb's on Saturday, June 25th, 8:00 till about noon. There is still a lot of lumber & signs around back of the rink & out buildings to be placed in the dumpsters or storage. About a billion nails still have to be removed from the interior studs where the sheet rock was removed. There are more old seats & other items that have to be moved from the rink floor and put into our storage building. Also general clean-up of the grounds. We will also be working in the Babb house removing the old art deco rear wall from behind what was the fountain... We hope to use it in the rink in the food area. I'm sure there is more to do, just can't think of them right now. As usual coffee & muffins will be served to get you going.
Hope to see you next Saturday..
CRC Board
 - - - - - -
Suffield won the $100,000 state grant for the renovation of the Babb's rink.

The Babb's Rink Hometowne Collectable is available for purchase.

On Friday October 31, 2003, Citizens Restoring Congamond (CRC) signed a 20-year lease with the Town of Suffield for use of the Babb's Skating Rink. We have a big refurbishing job ahead of us!

The rink has been closed since 1997. Water has been leaking in and there are many code violations that will have to be corrected. Once we get the building "up and running", we can sublet it to a rink operator. All profits realized will be used for CRC lake upkeep & preservation projects.

If you are interested in getting involved with this exciting project, we would love to hear from you. Give some thought to what you would like to do. If you have any particular expertise, want to be on some sort of committee or just want to "do something" let us know. If you know of anyone else that would like to be of help, we also would love to hear from them.

We'll keep you touch through email and postings on this web site. 

Babb's open house & kayak demonstration (Saturday, May 22)
Citizens Restoring Congamond will be hosting an OPEN HOUSE and KAYAK DEMONSTRATION at the Babb's Rink this Saturday, May 22nd. We will open for your inspection and education from 9:00 in the morning until 4:00 in the afternoon.

Thanks to all the volunteers, the construction committee has done a marvelous job of clearing out all the non-conforming electrical wiring, plumbing, wall board, seating and everything else that must be removed. Come see the rink in it's final original form before reconstruction begins. Coffee and light snacks will be served.

While you're there, why not check out the kayak demonstration by Wilderness Experiences of Southwick! Scott and his able crew will be exhibiting the latest in kayaking gear. Several kayak dealers have also promised to be in attendance.

Rain or shine... We hope to see you there.

P.S. We have been contacted by a fellow that skated at the rink back in the 50's & 60's. He is looking for his old skating partner. If anyone knows the whereabouts of a Judy Johnson who lived on Bungalow street and skated at Babb's, please get back to us.

Gerry
 

 
A successful clean-up day
Hello We had a very successful clean-up day this week... On Tuesday April 27, Suffield Academy sent thirty three students to Babb's for a "Community Day" event. These kids pitched right in and did a great job of cleaning out the brush & junk behind and around the rink and grounds. CRC member, Tim Pratt brought out his trusty chain saw & made quick work of a lot of dead and nuisance trees in the rear of the rink. They also had a crew raking and cleaning the beach. We filled up two dumpsters with debris. It was hard just keeping up with them! Thanks so much to Suffield Academy, the students and Tim for another great day at the beach. Gerry
 
 
Construction Committee says thanks (Tue, 20 Apr 2004)
Hi Everyone, On behalf of the Construction Committee I want to thank everyone that donated their time this past Saturday to keep the Babbs Rink Renovation project moving forward. We finished the demo at the South Entrance and the Party Room and also removed the West entrance canopy. We loaded 1 full dumpster plus part of a 2nd. Well done everyone.

We won't be working this Saturday so everyone can tend to their own "Honey Do list". We are definitely at a point where we need building materials such as framing lumber and plywood to move much further. We also need to obtain the building permit. Our Architect, Dave Pernice, is away for the next 2 weeks so we'll have to work on the building permit once he returns.

This Tuesday we will have the Suffield Academy students doing some of the grounds work and possible some miscellaneous nail pulling. If you would like to join us... "Come On Down"! We'll be working 8:00AM 'till about noon.

Thanks Again for all your help, Rick Crosby
 
Babb's Rink clean up day (Tuesday, April 27th)
Again, first I want to welcome all the new "members" to our Babb's Rink email list. It's growing every week! Things are really beginning to move at the rink. On Tuesday, April 27th, Suffield Academy will be sending a crew of between 20 & 30 students to the rink for their Community Day activities. We will be doing light clean-up and landscaping. We also hope to start removing some of the "deadwood" behind the rink and near the beach. If you would like to participate in this, please feel free to show up at the rink. We will probably work from 8:00AM 'till 1:00. You don't have to commit to the full five hours, just come & go as you please. The town has supplied dumpsters for the debris and CRC will supply work gloves and coffee. Please bring rakes & other yard tools. (We could probably use a few wheelbarrows and/or tarps to haul stuff) Hope to see you there, Gerry Crane, Pres. CRC
 
Babb's Update, by Jerry Crane
Wed, 17 Mar 2004
The Babb's Rink committees held an organizational & protocol meeting last night at the Brass Rail. This was the first "face to face across the table" meeting for the chairpersons of the five committees to give them all a chance to meet each other and present their brainstorming ideas.

The FUNDING COMMITTEE reported that a grant for $15,000 has been submitted to the Zak Foundation. This is a Suffield family foundation that grants funds to worthy Suffield projects. We should hear the results in the next few months... We have our fingers crossed! Right now the committee is in the process of listing local businesses to be approached for sponsorships. They are also considering other fund raising events for this year.

The CONSTRUCTION COMMITTEE has been very busy. They have held several meetings at the rink, brainstormed ideas and have entered those ideas into a CAD program. We now have a dimensional drawing of the building that can be manipulated as we progress. This is the first step in "putting on paper" the end result.

Although the LANDSCAPE COMMITTEE can't really begin yet, plans were discussed regarding clean-up of both the upper park & the beach. We are talking to Scott at Wilderness Experiences in Southwick regarding the rental of kayaks on the beach, so the beach area must be cleaned up and readied.

The PUBLICITY COMMITTEE has already set up a web site for Babb's. (www.babbsrink.org) It is a one pager right now, but it will be expanded and used to track progress to keep the world up to date. We will be taking a lot of pictures as the work progresses and posting as we go.

The FINANCE COMMITTEE is in the process of opening up savings & checking accounts. They will be the folks handling all the money and reporting not only to the board but to everyone. They will also have to file the income tax forms when that time comes... Just a note... As a 501(c)(3) non-profit, CRC does not pay income tax, but we still have to file a tax schedule that, trust me, is much more complicated than the standard.

We also discussed the possibility of forming an HISTORICAL COMMITTEE. They would be responsible to investigate, gather and archive the history and memorabilia related to Babb's. They would also assist in the investigation of the possibility of registering the rink in the state and national register of historic buildings. If you're interested in history... Here's your chance!

As things progress and help for various projects and events becomes necessary, we'll send an email "call for help"!

If you would like to be involved with any of the action, please feel free! Your commitment can be as easy as showing up once in a while for a meeting or event, or jumping on board and joining this dedicated group of individuals on a committee.
 
 
Construction Committee Report #1
Co-Chairs: Rick Crosby, Bill Norcross, Tom Talimini
Date: April 13, 2004
The Babbs Construction Committee is very pleased to report that the renovation of the Babbs Roller Rink has begun. This is not some small time project that will be completed in a couple of months. This is a yearlong renovation project that will be breathing new life into an 11,000 square foot memory filled building built in the 1930’s. This building has sat dormant for over 7 years and the scope of work required is enormous. With that being said, this committee and its members are ready for the challenge. We are very pleased with the construction (or should I say destruction) progress made to date. This Committee started the demolition phase of this Project on March 20. We’ve had three 5-hour workdays on March 20, March 27 and April 3 and in that short amount of time, have filled 4 dumpsters worth of demolition debris. We have roughly 1 more day of demolition before starting on the rough framing phase. This phase is pending the issuance of the building permit and availability of the funding to purchase the required materials. The amount of energy and enthusiasm the volunteers have shown so far towards this project has just been amazing. The word has been spreading and the people are getting involved. On behalf of the Babbs Construction Committee, we thank everyone for his or her interest, time and hard work to date.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS SO FAR:

1. We formed a 15 person (and growing) Construction Committee.
2. We found an Architect, Dave Pernice from Leon Pernice and Associates from West Springfield, MA to help with the building’s design.
3. We have a preliminary floor plan and a cross section of the building drawn on CAD.
4. We picked-up and delivered nearly 10,000 square feet of carpet tile that was donated by Cigna of Bloomfield, CT.
5. Mark Sullivan donated 3 boxes of safety items for our safety.
6. We demolished and removed 4 dumpsters worth of debris to date. The Town supplied the dumpsters and removed them at no charge to us.
7. We have moved the Town owned items to one area of the rink for storage.
8. We unbolted, removed and stored nearly 140 theater style chairs from the rink’s perimeter.
9. We gained access to the area above existing ceiling in effort to determine its integrity. The main roof structure appears to be in good shape.
10. We have exposed the lower perimeter roof framing along with certain areas of the existing bathrooms and concession walls and have accessed their integrity. It turns out that much of the framing in those areas will need to be reframed with new lumber.
11. We have made contact with the Town’s Building Official to review the floor plan in an effort to be sure we are headed in the right direction. That meeting should take place during the week of April 12th.
12. We have 2 individuals that are interested in running the roller rink once the building meets the Towns approval.
13. We have a temporary electric panel installed and ready to be energized next week.

Sincerely,
Rick Crosby
Construction Committee
 
 
RESTORATION ROLLING AT BABB’S RINK (published in Suffield Observer, April 2004)
Robin Baumert, Publicity Committee
Babb’s Skating Rink holds a dear place in many of our hearts and the mere thought of Babb’s brings back special memories, to both young and old. You can’t help but think about the family outings, first dates, first kisses, and lazy summer afternoons. Just as remarkable is looking back at the entire history of Babb’s. The Big Bands, the dance hops, the arcade, boat tours, and of course, the roller-skating. Babb’s has earned an important place in Suffield and Southwick’s history and in an aspiration to maintain that history, Citizens Restoring Congamond decided to take on a major challenge.

We signed a 20-year lease with the Town of Suffield in October 2003 and, at last, began the much anticipated restoration project at Babb’s Skating Rink. After exploring interest in the community and tossing around several ideas, from an indoor sports arena to a function hall, there was overwhelming response in support of reopening the building as a roller-skating rink. CRC wholeheartedly agrees, and hopes to bring back some of the magic by restoring the rink, along with the picnic and beach areas. Once the rink has been restored, we are planning to sublet the building to a rink operator. All of the profits recognized from this venture will be applied toward the restoration and preservation of the Congamond Lakes.

Since the building has been unoccupied since 1997, this is no small feat. There are many significant hurdles to overcome; especially since this entire project banks heavily on volunteered labor and skillsets, and donations (both monetary and materials). So far, we have seen tremendous support and interest in the project and are hoping the enthusiasm carries through the duration of the restoration.

Our journey begins. Our Fundraising committee is in the process of coordinating activities geared toward raising monies to begin refurbishment of the building. At February’s committee meeting, we decided to research the feasibility of selling memorial bricks or stones and/or selling engraved plaques for seat backs, along with the more traditional fundraising events. We also hosted a booth at Suffield Chamber of Commerce Business Showcase in March. This provided a great venue to gain support from local businesses and raise awareness of the project. We are also planning on contacting the Southwick Association of Businesses and drafting a letter requesting donations and/or corporate sponsorships. We will maintain a “Donation Thermometer” to monitor our progress. Placement of the thermometer is yet to be determined.

Chip Dyer, chair of the Publicity and Website Support committee, has created a new website www.BabbsRink.org, dedicated to providing up-to-date information on the restoration process. They have discussed the possibility of developing some historical information and perhaps a photo gallery and posting this on the site as well. They are also tasked with notifying several local newspapers, radio, and television stations of the fundraising activities and status of the project.

In the mean time, the Construction committee is underway. They did a preliminary visual inspection in February and are in awe of the amount of work that needs to be done. They noted several items that need attention, ranging from design layout to electrical restoration. As they worded it in their meeting minutes, “the list could go on and on”. They will work with town officials and identify milestones in conjunction with the development of estimates of the scope and cost of work to be done to aid in the grant process.

We have a long road ahead of us, but we sincerely look forward to providing a place for our family and friends to make their own memories, not only after Babb’s is restored, but also along the way. If you are interested in learning more about the project, joining a committee, or getting involved in any way, please visit our website, BabbsRink.org.

Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly recognized, volunteer, non-profit organization dedicated to the betterment of the Congamond Lakes. We can be reached at www.congamond.org, or P.O. Box 117, West Suffield, CT 06093
 

 
Sun, 4 Apr 2004 - Thanks from the "Destruction" committee

Hello

Well, the construction committee had another successful work day on Saturday. Here's their short report & thank you!

To all the volunteers at the rink:
I just wanted say that the volunteers for this Babbs project have been amazing. We definitely have a lot of hard working people and it's great to see. After only 3 days of work, the demolition phase is nearly complete.

If we are not held-up with getting a building permit (or partition building permit), our next phase of construction will be the rough framing.

On behalf on the Babb's Construction Committee, thanks for the enthusiasm!

Rick Crosby

P.S. from Gerry,
Don't forget the CRC annual meeting on April 13 at the Brass Rail at 7:30.
 

 

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