Clubhouse open all seasons

12 years ago

Clubhouse open all seasons

By Kathy McCarty

Staff Writer

    PRESQUE ISLE — An Easter Sunday snowstorm may have had members of the Presque Isle Snowmobile Club wondering whether the groomer would be needed one more time this season, but one thing that will see definite use year-round, regardless of weather, is the clubhouse – located on Mountain Road adjacent to ITS83.

Staff photo/Kathy McCarty
  bs-PISC sno run-clr-c4-sh-08  NORM DRISCOLL, at left, chair of the Presque Isle Snowmobile Club Board of Directors, looks over the dining area at the clubhouse during the Andy Santerre Sno-Run. The facility has plenty of space for parties, receptions and reunions, and seats about 150 individuals.

    Following a fire that destroyed the original structure three years ago and the subsequent rebuilding, officials have welcomed a number of groups, organizations and individuals to the facility, hosting suppers, fundraisers and special events.

    “It’s much lighter inside,” said Karen Hilt, membership secretary, referring to the pine-colored interior and large windows that allow in more natural light.

    Hilt said the outpouring of public generosity was overwhelming, following the fire.

Staff photo/Kathy McCarty

    FAMILIES can often be found gathered at the Presque Isle Snowmobile Clubhouse on Mountain Road, enjoying a meal or other gathering. Here, from left, club members, John Graves and Patricia Sterris, of Presque Isle, are pictured with granddaughters Raquelle and Isabelle Sterris seated at the facility’s fireplace.  bs-PISC sno run-clr-c2-sh-08

    “The community has been so supportive with donations- money, goods and time,” said Hilt.

    The facility features larger bathrooms, a fully-equipped kitchen, large dining/entertaining area and a fireplace with a pellet stove insert.

    “The bricks are part of the old chimney,” explained Hilt.

    Norm Driscoll, chairman of the board, said local businesses donated toward the reconstruction.

    “Extreme Granite, of Presque Isle, donated fireplace granite. PNM Construction did a major part of the building and stonework too. Todd Hutchings did the floor,” said Driscoll.

    “We’ve got a great deal more room and can seat 150 comfortably. Last year we had about 40 rentals,” Driscoll said.

Staff photo/Kathy McCarty

    BOB BESAW, president of the Presque Isle Snowmobile Club, is pictured with Andy Santerre, at right, during the eighth annual Andy Santerre Sno-Run.  bs-PISC sno run-clr-c3-sh-08

    In addition to Hilt and Driscoll, this year’s club officers include: President Bob Besaw; Barry Bartley, first vice president; Connie Driscoll, secretary; Judy Cronin, treasurer; Caston Lovely, trail master; and Wayne Sweetser, assistant trail master. The Board of Directors include: P. John Powers, Don Akeley, Josh Allen, Ted Roberts, Sandra Bartley, Scott Thompson, Howard Cushman, Daniel Stewart, Tony Sullivan, Raymond Walton, John Graves and Toby Plummer who serves as webmaster.

    The clubhouse has already served as the site for several fund-raising suppers, with the weekly Stew Night benefiting a number of area nonprofits, including the Girl Scouts and Presque Isle Historical Society. The club also hosted a luncheon for the eighth annual Andy Santerre Sno-Run, benefiting AMHC’s Sexual Assault Awareness Services in February.

    Sandra Bartley and Connie Driscoll oversaw the kitchen/cooking for the Sno-Run, preparing pots of chicken stew and hamburger tomato rice soup. When asked how they know the right amount of ingredients to feed so many, Bartley responded, “It’s by guess or by gory,” with Driscoll adding, “Then we pray a lot.”

    The ladies said cooking for such events is typically a joint effort, with various people contributing toward the function, including desserts and homemade rolls.

Staff photo/Kathy McCarty

    SHARON BARTLEY and Connie Driscoll, members of the Presque Isle Snowmobile Club, can often be found in the clubhouse kitchen, whipping up a delicious meal for one function or another. Here, Bartley and Driscoll set out bowls of soup at the luncheon for AMHC’s eighth annual Andy Santerre Sno-Run. bs-PISC sno run-clr-c1-sh-08

    Hilt said the clubhouse serves many purposes throughout the year, including class reunions, weddings, anniversaries and fund-raising events.

    “We offer affordable rental rates. It’s a beautiful location and offers plenty of room for just about any occasion,” said Hilt. “It’s our way of helping the community — allowing others to enjoy the facility for a nominal fee.”

    The club uses the money from rentals to cover such expenses as heat and utilities. Hilt encourages anyone looking for a site for their special event to consider the clubhouse as an option.

    “We welcome inquiries and while we have some dates already booked this year, we have a number of dates still available,” said Hilt.

    For more information, visit, look for the club on Facebook or call 764-6805.