Mike Young, our president, and Lindsey, his wife, generously hosted the Annual Meeting and potluck luncheon at their lovely home in Brightwood. We thank Mike and Lindsey very much for their great hospitality. We had an excellent meeting, a delicious lunch and lively conversation. We will post more about the meeting shortly.
BRIGHTWOOD I, II, III
PROPERTY OWNERS ASSOCIATION
MINUTES OF ANNUAL MEETING
JUNE 20, 2020
Directors present: Charles Caine (Vice President, via Zoom), Lynne Marshall, Lee Ryan (Treasurer), Joann Ryan (Secretary)
Also present: Mike and Lindsey Young, Elaine Arnold, Heath Kamp, Nesha Nicholson, Dr. Michael and Chandra Biggerstaff.
At 10:10 a.m., Treasurer Lee Ryan welcomed everyone to the 17th annual meeting of the Brightwood POA, which was held at the home of the Ryans at 300 Brightwood Trail South. As the first order of business, the minutes of the June 15, 2019 annual meeting were approved by acclamation.
Ballots were then counted, and Secretary Joann Ryan announced that a quorum was present with 19 properties voted out of the 34 properties in Brightwood, and that Lynne Marshall, Mike Young and Joann Ryan had been unanimously elected to serve two-year terms on the board. Lynne Marshall then read the Brightwood Vision Statement, and Mike Young read the Brightwood Mission Statement.
Financial Report (Lee Ryan)
Lynne Marshall thanked Lee for managing the budget in an extremely cautious and conservative way, thereby keeping Brightwood stable in the face of the last two years of unusually intense rainfall and flooding.
Lee also reported that there are now 10 homes in Brightwood. In addition to the 34 privately-owned properties in Brightwood, Brightwood owns about 40 acres of common property, on which we pay no taxes because it is green space. There are also some areas within the boundaries of Brightwood that are not Brightwood-owned.
Both Heath Kamp and Mike Young are interested in buying tractors in the future; Dr. Biggerstaff stated that he might be able to get one of his father’s old tractors if there were a place to store it. Heath Kamp and Elaine Arnold stated that it would be easy enough to build a shed. The question is where to put it; this must be considered in our future planning. Heath already has a piece of equipment that can grade flat areas, and Lynne thought it would be good if it could be used to do some light work for Brightwood. If any or all of this equipment could be used to do some of the Brightwood road work, it would free up part of the budget for future projects, such as building a greenhouse.
Mowing (Lynne Marshall)
In the past, our mowing contractor has come twice a year. This year she will come three times for the same amount of money; this will keep the vegetation from getting out of hand. The most thorough mowing will be the mid-summer mowing in July, which will involve some weed-whacking by hand. At some point we should also consider doing some work on the Serenity Garden area. Another big issue is roadside tree clearing; this work is needed on a regular basis to keep the roadside saplings under control. Lynne asked everyone to remove any big rocks that they see in the middle or sides of the road, as they tend to interfere with the mowing.
Amenities (Heath Kamp)
Heath presented his ideas for a) removing some rock from the creek near Holly Falls to build a path of flat rocks around the garden pond and b) putting a picnic table in the area of the waterfall. We would need to make sure that removing rock from the creek would not re-route the creek in any way; Powder Horn has signs that prohibit the removal of rock from Laurel Creek. Nesha Nicholson said that her brother would be available for consultation on creek management.
Garden (Lynne Marshall)
Lynne congratulated Mike and Lindsey Young for all of the great work that they have done at the community garden and for their generosity in offering everyone in the community a share in the harvest. The Youngs and Heath Kamp will coordinate the use of the garden by all owners who are interested in gardening there.
Brightwood Gate Project (Lynne Marshall)
The Brightwood Gate project had been temporarily halted until the road damage at the Wes Randall Road entrance could be repaired. Road contractor Dennis Winkler has now replaced the old (lower) culvert at Wes Randall Road. He found another old culvert there, and both culverts are now open. Perhaps we can afford to install a bigger (upper) culvert next year near the Browns’ driveway, but for the time being Winkler has created a ditch there that will make any flood water run down the side of the road instead of across the road, as it had been doing.
“Brainstorming for Brightwood’s Future”
Everyone participated in a brainstorming session to determine the priorities for the coming year. It was agreed that the top priorities for now are as follows:
1) Organize a Brightwood work day to clean out the culverts.
2) Possibly build a shed to house any tractor that would be made available to do light Brightwood road work. (This would save money on road repairs in the long run. It would be good to have a piece of equipment that could clean out the ditches and culverts. Heath’s plan is to buy a small subcompact Kubota tractor with a front-end loader and a backhoe.)
3) Create/improve a Holly Falls picnic area. (Heath said he would be happy to work on this.)
4) Pond inlet project and trail around pond. (Heath and Mike would like to work on this. The idea is to improve the inflow of water into the pond; this project was dropped at the end of last year for lack of funds. As for the trail around the pond, Heath suggested putting down some sturdy felt with flat rocks on top of it.)
Additional suggestions were:
- Grade Serenity Garden and possibly create an orchard or a park there. (The area will need a lot of grading. If we are thinking about planting an orchard there, we will first have to check on the quality of the soil.)
- Build a screened pavilion at the pond for picnicking.
- Replace the big culvert at the bottom of Holly Falls Trail past the parking area. (This will be a major expense at some point. It was thought last year that it could cost $5,000.)
It was agreed by everyone that bringing true broadband Internet to our area should be our #1 priority, but there is not much that we can do about it. However, Curtis Johnson of Powder Horn, who has been working on this problem for many years, is currently working with Wilkes Communications, an Internet service provider in Wilkesboro, on a new approach.
At 12:25 a.m., the General Meeting adjourned to a brief Directors’ Meeting, with Vice President Charles Caine still connected by Zoom and phone. It was unanimously decided that the current officers should retain their positions, with the exception that former President Chuck Bargerstock is no longer a resident, having recently sold his home. Mike Young was unanimously approved as the new President. The other officers continue to be: Charles Caine (Vice President), Lee Ryan (Treasurer), and Joann Ryan (Secretary). The next meeting of the new board was tentatively scheduled for July 19.
Greetings from President Chuck Bargerstock
Can you believe it? Brightwood has had a property owners association for 16 years! On June 15th, 2019, we held our Annual Meeting at the Bargerstock residence. With the necessary quorum of votes, Charles Caine and Lee Ryan were unanimously re-elected to serve two-year terms on the Board of Directors. Charlie Bargerstock will continue to serve as President, Charles Caine as Vice President, Lee Ryan as Treasurer, Joann Ryan as Secretary, and Lynne Marshall as Director at Large.
This year the Board is being assisted with help and support from permanent residents Heath and Shelly Kamp as well as Lindsey and Mike Young – many thanks for all their input, experience and energy.
The stability and strength of Brightwood as a community was noted in the Financial Report, which showed that prudent financial management over the years has allowed Brightwood to take care of the ongoing annual expenses of our community and still maintain sufficient funds in a special account so as to‘be prepared’ for unexpected expenses.
This year’s big ‘unexpected expense’ happened in early June, after the whole Boone/Deep Gap/High Country area experienced near-record rainfall (Brightwood and Powder Horn had 17” over a few days), which caused extensive damage to local roads, culverts and ditches.
Very fortunately, we had just had major road maintenance done to all the main roads of Brightwood, with thorough grading and addition of gravel, and this protected most of the roads from washing out. But some culverts got blocked and flooded and required storm-damage repair work at the Brightwood Trail North entrance. The Brightwood ’savings’ account allowed us to pay for this road damage without having to request a special assessment.
Thank you to Lee and the Board for careful management of Brightwood’s finances.
The special topic for the meeting, which was conducted by Lynne Marshall, was called Priorities for Future Projects such as improving roads, working on a better water supply for the community pond and garden, building a pavilion in the garden area, widening very narrow parts of Brightwood Trail, improving Serenity Garden and more.
We are very grateful that all our communications, personal interactions between residents, neighbors and maintenance contractors and all our meetings and activity in Brightwood have continued to be cordial, friendly and supportive. This is a beautiful place to be!
You may not know that we have had a Facebook page for a while. The text and picture look more or less like the above. We would be delighted if you would visit the page occasionally and post any comments you might have. You will find all manner of interesting Brightwood news, local information, photos and possibly some videos. Check it out.
On Saturday, May 27, 2017 at the Ryan residence, we had our traditional potluck luncheon followed by our Annual Meeting. The food, as usual, was delicious and the atmosphere was convivial. Thanks to all who brought such excellent dishes as enchilada bake, refreshing salads, quinoa tabouleh, vegetable tarts and roast chicken. Everyone enjoyed the repast and the lively conversation.
We started our meeting with the counting of votes for the election of directors. Many members sent in their absentee ballots and those present at the meeting voted on the spot. Charles Caine and Lee Ryan were unanimously re-elected as directors for the next two years. The minutes of the 2016 Annual Meeting were approved. Then we had the customary reading of the Brightwood Vision and Mission statements to remind us why we are here.
Lee Ryan, the current secretary/treasurer, gave a brief financial report indicating that the community is in good shape and has a healthy reserve.
Our guest speaker was real estate broker Margo Lenmark. She spoke about how we can make Brightwood more interesting for buyers. She said that there is currently a great interest in smaller, less expensive homes and thus our community would attract more people–especially young people–if we would lower our minimum square footage requirement to 1200 instead of the present 1800. A lively discussion ensued. The board will consider the smaller square footage idea.
After Margo spoke, the meeting was adjourned.
On September 24, 2016 Terry and Lynn Bowerman held a delightful open house. They decided it was time to do that since they had finally finished their log home. They had spent a long time building the house themselves. The Bowermans warmly welcomed a number of us current and former Brightwoodians who came to help celebrate the completion of this excellent new home away from home. The food and company were very enjoyable. We also had the opportunity to sample some of the Bowerman’s own delicious honey. We learned that Terry keeps bees at their main home in Tennessee.
The new home turned out very well indeed. It fits beautifully in the surrounding forest. The log exterior, wood interior and appropriate lighting give a cozy and friendly feeling. There is a generous wrap-around porch so people can easily enjoy the outdoors. There are three levels: a basement with storage and play areas, the main floor and a loft. There are several bedrooms and baths. The Bowermans and family members plan to visit their new home frequently–usually on weekends. We are sure they will enjoy their fine creation because, even with our short visit, we certainly have!
We held the 11th Annual Meeting of the Brightwood POA on Saturday, June 7. The agenda was a full one, starting with a fantastic lunch and ending with a group picture, showing that a good time was had by all. Our time together gave us a chance to welcome two new Brightwood families – the Dugger-Hoffmans and the Bowermans.
During the business session we heard a financial report, updates on improvements and plans for community roads and amenities, and the like. The annual budget report showed us in relatively good shape, although we had to dip into our reserve to some extent to help cover unusual road cleanup costs after the huge 100-year rainstorm last July. While ongoing road maintenance is always our largest annual expense, conscientious upkeep on the 4.4 miles of roads in our 650 acres over the years is paying off. They are mainly in good condition despite the record rainfall that affected all of this area last summer. Recent road maintenance included work on some of the lesser-used side roads that have not had as much attention in recent years.
Another topic included how best to manage the community garden with the departure of garden stewards, Carol and Gary Hancock. Some suggestions for a change in approach will be discussed more at future Board Meetings. However, since the Annual Meeting, we have held two well-attended community garden parties to work on and clean up the garden and park areas. We all had a good time being together!
We also discussed possible ways to market Brightwood in order to get others to come and build here. For example, we want to be able to help those who want to sell their land by promoting it with realtors in the area, developing a brochure and using other approaches.
After the business session, we watched a narrated, online PowerPoint presentation on private property forest management, which served as a basis for a follow up group discussion. It gave us food for thought about the stages of forest growth, planning and maintenance of healthy forests, and valuable information on fire protection.
A special thanks goes out to those who could not attend the meeting, but whose proxy votes went toward electing four members to the Brightwood Board. The new Board is: Charlie Bargerstock (President), Frank Hood (VP), Lee Ryan (Secretary/Treasurer), Joe Weaver and Lynne Marshall (Directors).
As volunteers we take pride in how we plan for and manage Brightwood. Thank you for your trust in us. In that capacity we are grateful that the regular payment of annual dues by our members has enabled us to maintain the quality and values of the community as a whole and thus of our individual properties. We hope you will come visit us soon to see what a special place Brightwood has become.
We have made considerable progress with our 5-year plan. (Click here for plan statements.) In the past several years, we have made improvements to the garden/pond area, installed attractive road signs, kept the website more up-to-date, entered into a reciprocity agreement with our neighbors (Powder Horn and Blue Ridge Mountain Club) about sharing trails, have continued our membership in the Boone Chamber of Commerce and have been sending out a seasonal email newsletter.
In keeping with our 5-year plan, we restructured the 7-acre common area with the pond, garden, orchard and picnic grounds. This common area now has a name: Brightwood Park. The main features: a sturdy wooden bridge over the creek so we can access our workshop and an excellent rebuilding of the pond by contractor Charlie Townsend. The pond has a rock lining around the edges, a nice walkway all around it and a pleasing rock waterfall at one end. It is a joy to take a stroll around the pond or sit on the bench and watch the waterfall. We have recently planted flowers and bushes around the pond. To protect our fruit trees and bushes from the predations of our deer population, we extended our garden fence to include part of the orchard area.