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New software may solve booking woes at Wellesley’s recreation facilities

Wellesley recreation committee’s representative from St. Clements attended Tuesday’s council meeting to share her frustrations with event planning and venue booking through the current township system, however there may be a solution on the horizon.

Melanie Martin plans events for St. Clements and shared with council the headache that has come along with trying to book the community’s annual memorial baseball tournament. Scheduling conflicts could be a thing of the past, though, with a line item in the 2016 Wellesley budget allotted for the purchase of new software for the recreation department.

Before the possible solution was presented, Martin spoke to council and Brad Voisin, director of facilities for the municipality.

In January, when submitting dates, she and other organizers found that the weekend they traditionally host the fundraising event had been booked. Same goes for the weekend before.

“We are kind of stuck. We always do the same events every year, so I just wondered if there was any consideration for our dates?” she asked, appealing to the financial side of the problem. “I know that you want to let other people use our facilities, and we understand that, but we are making money for the township.”

Currently, all facility bookings go through Pat Snyder, the recreation facilities coordinator. For now, Voisin suggested to Martin that rather than waiting until January every year, to book every event a year in advance.

He also suggested a possible venue change for the annual slo-pitch tournament, but it was determined that wouldn’t work with participants drinking alcohol and travelling to either Linwood or Wellesley to play.

After determining that there was no immediate solution to this summer’s scheduling conflict, Voisin let Martin know the booking process will soon no longer be going through a single person in the department – it is going online. Voisin will be looking into fixing the issue for this year, though, as well.

“We have budgeted for new recreation booking software for this year,” he said, answering in the affirmative when asked if that meant the booking process will be moved online. “Yes. It will be online and you will be able to go in there and tentatively book it, and it will pass on a flag saying that someone is interested in this venue. It will make things a lot easier.”

Martin was enthusiastic about the development.

“I think this is going to be great for the township,” she told Voisin. “I think that people who are going to be looking at booking want to see it. They don’t want to make a phone call.”

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