Believe it or not, we sadly have surpassed the halfway point of our 2022 season!! There are still many more weekends to enjoy our time outdoors with family and friends. This summer has turned out to be much more normal than the last two seasons and we couldn’t be happier. It is so nice to have people in the office, to hear kid’s laughter and seeing people's faces again. It has also allowed us to focus on the park infrastructure and activities. The new pickleball court and sitting area at the deep beach, have both been big hits. Staff have been working at refreshing some of the other facilities, the horseshoe pavilion, basketball court, gym/office, and sand beach area. There is a new pump-out unit and truck to allow us to better service the needs of our members, as well as the gate controllers on the boat yard. We continue to expand our nature trail network, solar landscape lighting and have planted another 15 trees in the park as well as updated the sea doo dock. We also got a start our barn restoration last fall and hope to continue this fall.
An update to our septic project; over the last 12 months we have had to search for another engineering firm to take on our project, as staffing shortages with the previous engineers left us abruptly in the middle of the planning stage. This month we will meet with the Ministry to present our proposal and design for our new septic treatment facility. We will keep you updated as this project moves forward.
As most of you are already aware, Sunnyside has been in consultation with the Township and the Planning and Development committee of Rideau Lakes over the last 18 months, to determine the framework which will govern Campgrounds in our Township. This has all been while under the constraints of the Interim by-laws put in place by local government. Some of these constraints will and have already affected Sunnyside and how we do business. Topics such as lot size, trailer size, property line setbacks, lighting, buffer zones, trailer assessment, noise, waterfront, and many more are all issues being discussed. If you wish to know more on the subject, please visit the Township of Rideau Lakes website.
This is also the time of year when we update our site pricing for the up-coming 2023 season. This is always a difficult task; with the current state of the economy, it has been even more difficult to predict the cost of operations. We struggle with our decisions to maintain an affordable option for families to enjoy their summers here. Recent MPAC assessments now will be included for some sites in the park, and this has increased Sunnyside’s property taxes by 100%.
In 2021 Sunnyside accepted all responsibility to take on the increase cost in taxes as seasonal site pricing was already set for 2022. Site prices for 2023 will reflect a portion of property tax that Sunnyside has paid, for units determined by MPAC to be assessable in the park. This is a complicated process as each unit is assessed a value determined by MPAC on several criteria. This is then formulated as an accessible tax value which is billed to Sunnyside as a total value for all units including park infrastructure. To forgo the administrative nightmare, we have determined a site increase for 2023, in addition, units that have been assessed will have an average portion added to their site price. We know everyone is feeling the pain of the cost of inflation, but no one could predict the rise in costs of fuel to services. We work very hard to keep increases to a minimum and invest your money back into the park. We acknowledge pricing for next year is based on what we know now and may need to be adjusted in 2023.
Due to covid, Sunnyside’s policy on trailer age has not strictly been adhered too. However, there are units in the park that will need to be upgraded due to their age. For insurance and safety reasons the age of units in the park has gradually been shortened. Any units older than 1998 will need to be upgraded or removed by the start of the 2023 season.
As we proceed with our future septic planning and design, we must focus on the future and good practices to comply within the Ministry guidelines. Units in the park must comply to a CSA standard for holding tanks with regards to recreational vehicles. Any unit in the park that has adaptations or additions to your septic holding facilities must comply to these standards, and or altered to comply, or be removed by a certified professional. Units from factory with no alterations would comply to this standard. All sites down our fenced property line from #39-#62 will need access for trenching and collection piping, in preparation for the new system. Sunnyside will help remove or move some obstacles (sheds, decks, etc.) over the next 18months to make this project possible.
*Notice* On August 13th/2022 there will be a private function in the pavilion from 5:00 pm -7:30 pm. Please be considerate of our members during this function. The members having the private function have also booked a DJ and have kindly invited all members to join in their celebration after 7:30 pm.
Coming in August is the return of the live Auction. We would love for all our member to provide a new auction item. We hope this will be as successful as in the past, again raising donations for the Sunnyside Shanley Shines Kids Fund. Donations are currently being accepted in the office now.
Labour day weekend will be somewhat different this year. We have several staff off to post-secondary schools, congrats to all of them! We have also made the difficult decision to not have our annual BBQ on Labour Day weekend. Due to dwindling attendance, and the fact that a majority of members do not support this event, left us with a large surplus of food the past 2 years. We will however continue to have entertainment on Sunday September 4th, with Wade Foster and his band playing from 8:00pm to 11:00pm. Sunday September 4th is also Brandon and Chelsey’s wedding day which several of us will be attending. Watch for an updated recreation schedule for the remainder of this year!! Psst…we have already been working on the recreation schedule for 2023, Smitty will be returning, not once but twice next summer!! Once for his amazing solo act, and the second time with his band (who knew?), as well, The Celtic Kitchen Party, and The ToneKats, will be playing for us. Have any ideas for next year, or would like to volunteer for events, please email Kaitlyn and Jenna to let them know your thoughts!
Some final notes to remember.
Your first Hydro installment, along with your deposit invoice for the 2023 season, will be sent out by the end of next week. This invoice will be due September 9th/2022. Your Rate Summery will be sent to you at the same time as your deposit invoice and will include your site price for 2023. Please read your Rate Summary thoroughly as there have been some changes made to it, including what your mandatory monthly payments will be for out of season payments. It must also be initialed in more than one spot this year, and returned to the office no later than October 10th, 2022, or penalties will be incurred.
Docks will be removed on the 24th of September this year, which means the sand beach and cove areas will be closed as of this date for the safety of our members. Please make sure all boats, bumpers and cleats are removed NO LATER than September 23rd/2022
Final garbage and pump out date will be October 10th/2022. You can book your winterization after Labour Day weekend. Winterizations must be booked and paid for prior to October 10th/2022.
Finally, Kevin, Melanie, Kaitlyn and Bryan would like to say, that although this has been a challenging year for us, and our staff both physically and mentally, we have very much enjoyed the season, and we look forward to 2023, and continuing to make your family vacation a memorable one at Sunnyside.