The September 2013 issue of the Candler Park Messenger is available now - click here to read it in PDF format.
There are over 1,500 addresses in Candler Park. Despite free membership, CPNO has about 300 registered members (many pairs of members share an address). I think CPNO could gain new members by reaching out to our neighbors in a new way so I’m recommending that we send a postcard. I am hopeful that a new type of announcement about goings on in our neighborhood (childcare and food at membership meetings, movie nights, renew membership online, etc.), will encourage more people to get involved. Since a member expressed concern over the trees that would have to be killed to send these postcards, I am also recommending that $125 be donated to Trees Atlanta. At our August meeting, I will propose that CPNO approve funding for the $1,649 to send postcards to the addresses of all non-members in Candler Park. This cost will cover the maximum that CPNO would spend: $1,524 for 2,500 postcards (minimum order, including postage) and the $125 donation to Trees Atlanta to plant five trees (I think only one tree will actually have to be sacrificed to produce the postcards). Please contact me with detailed questions by e-mailing email@example.com
In 2011, CPNO hosted the 5th Annual SweetWater 420 5K. Over 2,000 runners participated and the race sold out over a week in advance. Planning for the 2012 event has become complicated due to the uncertainty surrounding whether the city will allow SweetWater’s popular music festival to continue in its previous form. I believe that the festival, despite the disruption it causes, is popular in the neighborhood by an overwhelming majority. I am hopeful that enough residents will post messages in support of this festival (and festivals in general) to illustrate this to the city.
In the meantime, one of CPNO’s two primary fundraisers sits in limbo. I am proposing that CPNO promote and organize a 5K race on April 21st whether or not there is a festival. I am also proposing that CPNO hires Zulu Racing, LLC as its 2012 race director and timing company. While the timing and management costs will exceed last year’s budgeted cost by 38%, my research into Zulu’s technology and interview with their principals indicate that the increased cost is justified. In 2011, the race suffered from a lack of volunteers and a few other logistical issues last year but it is a highly successful event. I firmly believe that last year’s issues can be overcome and the race can be an even bigger success in 2012 but the planning must begin now. At our August meeting, I will propose that CPNO approve funding for the $3,250 contract with Zulu. $1,625 is payable upon signing and the remainder is payable within 3 days of the event. Please contact me with detailed questions by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, the market is now selling cool Candler Park merchandise. Mugs ($5), hats ($5) and banners ($25) are now available at the counter (cash only, please). 100% of sales benefit CPNO.
A reminder that the monthly CPNO meeting is tonight at the Old Stone Church (470 Candler Park Drive) -- socializing starts at 6:30 pm and the meeting starts at 7 pm. See the details several posts down on this page.
CPNO's core group of leaders and dozens of regular volunteers donate a tremendous amount of their time to manage the organization and its fundraising events. In order to facilitate that process now and in the future, I am proposing that CPNO hire Small Business Services (SBS), a firm owned by a Candler Park resident, to handle its bookkeeping. Simply put, this is a big job. Last year, CPNO's activities generated inflows of over $143,000 and outflows of over $94,000 (350 separate checks and deposit items). While this function has always been done by volunteers in the past, I think outsourcing will benefit the organization in the following ways:
1. Checks & Balances - CPNO's treasurer would approve all expenditures. SBS would actually issue payments and reconcile CPNO's bank statements. Separating these two functions is a cornerstone of prudent financial management.
2. Better Reporting - SBS is capable of producing more informative and useful reports for our organization.
3. Continuity - CPNO's board is elected annually. Outsourced bookkeeping would ensure that the members receive consistent information regardless of who is elected as Treasurer. Furthermore, if no one volunteers to be Treasurer, the Board can conceivably operate in his/her absence.
4. IRS Compliance - As CPNO has grown, so has its responsibility to comply with ever changing guidelines and reporting requirements for non-profits.
5. Collections - CPNO currently depends on the same volunteers who sell advertising in the Messenger (or solicit Event Sponsorship funds) to collect those funds. By working as our collections agent, SBS could help CPNO by providing collections administrative support.
6. Free our volunteers' time - Time spent on bookkeeping and administrative duties is time not spent planning and coordinating fundraising events and selling advertising in the Messenger.
Of course, with any new endeavor, there is always a downside:
1. Increased cost - These services will cost CPNO approximately $3,100 per year (6.27% of funds raised in 2010).
2. Collections may not improve and volunteers may not sell more Sponsorships or Messenger advertising.
3. A company may not perform our bookkeeping tasks as well as a dedicated volunteer (or as well as we expect).
I propose that we vote at the April General Meeting to accept Small Business Services' proposal to manage CPNO's bookkeeping for an annual cost of $3,100 ($350 for the first month; $250 for each additional month).
I propose that we vote to approve the 2011 420 5K operating budget at the March General Meeting. We are proposing an expansion of the race to up to 2,000 runners and this requires that we use electronic timing and additional security. The proposed fixed costs for 2011 are $7,650 vs $5,850 in 2010. The entry fee will be raised to $28 per runner to accommodate a $4 wristband sale back to the festival promoter and a $4 payment to the beverage vendor to provide the “free beer” for each runner. Due primarily to these factors and the rise in the cost of shirts, the cost per runner (variable cost) will rise from $7.80 in 2010 to $16.25 in 2011. Given this cost structure, the event will require approximately 800 runners to breakeven. If we achieve our goal of 2,000 runners, we'll net approximately the same amount as we did in 2010.
Best Case Worst Case
# Runners 2,000 800
Income 56,000 22,400
Fixed Costs 7,650 6,650
Variable Costs 32,500 13,000
Net Income 15,850 2,750
Thanks to the loyal sponsors of this year's event:
The long-awaited October Messenger is here! Now, I know that everyone looks forward to EVERY month's Messenger, but this one is even more special than most. Why? Because it's jam-packed with important Fall Fest info, and goodness knows you don't want to miss a word of it.
Many thanks to Paige and Walt who worked tirelessly to pull together this important issue early this month.
Boy howdy, it is steamy outside. What to do? Here's an idea: grab a cool beverage, turn on a fan, and curl up with the August Messenger. Enjoy!