FAIRLAWN: City officials are opening the Fairlawn Community Center for the holidays. City Council passed a resolution Monday allowing the city to alter the rental fees in order to keep the facility open.
Parks and Recreation Director Laurie Beisecker said the changes would allow events to be held there during the holidays. In the past the city had denied such request because it would lose money. Their decision to turn people away was dictated by the fact most holidays take place during the week Beisecker said.
“If a service department official is called in on a weekend the rate is just their daily rate,” Beisecker said. “But if they’re called in on a holiday it’s like double time.”
Now that the additional rates have been approved, the city is confident costs will be minimal and profits will improve. For Beisecker this is was a good time to include holiday usage. She said requests for using the center have gone up over the years.
“There are a lot of Fairlawn residents whose families are getting bigger,” Beisecker said. “Their houses just can’t accommodate everyone on Thanksgiving.”
She credits Service Director Ernie Staten for her chance to include holiday rates. Ever since Staten took over the department he told her she could rent whenever she wanted.
In addition to the daily rate, the cost for Fairlawn residents during a holiday is $200. Non-residents pay an extra $300.
Beisecker admits verifying a resident’s identity is sometimes a challenge. She said everyone fights for the Fairlawn rates. In order to bypass any fraudulent claims the city does a background check. It might also ask for a copy of a utility bill to verify residents’ identities.
The Fairlawn Community Center is located at 3486 S. Smith Road across the street from city hall. It is often the location of weddings, parties, anniversaries and other gatherings.