The Campbell River Disc Golf Society says their sport is growing to the point where they can’t keep up with the maintenance on their course, which is also need of repairs and improvements they can’t afford.
Representatives from the club were at council on Monday night asking to be included in its next round of financial deliberations this coming December.
Freeman of the city, Bill Matthews, along with society president Dan Walker, told council that their request for $29,700 in course improvements and $5,000 per year in maintenance budget, would be a good investment in the community.
“Disc golf is the fourth fastest growing sport in the world,” Matthews says. “The North American association now has over 125,000 members. There are over 10,000 courses in North America and there are over 20 north of Nanaimo, with three of them being located in the Comox Valley. We only have one, but we’ll get there.”
The first nine holes of Campbell River’s course were built in 1997, with the second nine installed in 2003. Since that time, Matthews says, participation in the sport has increased every year.
“Last year, the Sportsplex, which rents and sells discs, had 450 rentals and over 500 sales of discs,” Matthews says. “The estimated users per year exceeds 10,000 people down on that little course in Willow Point, and users range anywhere from pre-schoolers to seniors. Even some schools now are incorporating it into their curriculum.”
But with all that use comes significant wear and tear.
“We’ve become, obviously, a bit of a victim of our own success,” Matthews says, asking for the society’s request to be added to the 2019 financial deliberations. “We believe ($29,700) will bring the course into great shape and encourage even more users, as well as allowing us to host sanctioned tournaments, which would each draw well over 100 participants, and would obviously be an added tourism component.”
The improvements include a signage board with course information, hole signage, new or improved tee pads, drainage improvements, danger tree assessment and removal, a pair of brush saws for the club to use for brush maintenance, the addition of 30 trees to the course, along with new scoring baskets.
Council voted unanimously in favour of adding the request to the list of projects being considered for funding in December.