The president of Nelson’s disc golf society says city councillors who object to their proposal to build a course are doing so without knowing all the facts.
Council took the first steps to amending its cemetery bylaw to allow the club to use a portion of land considered part of the Nelson Cemetery.
But it did so over objections from councillors Robin Cherbo and Bob Adams, who argued it’s inappropriate to play sports on “sacred space.”
However, disc golf advocate Mike Moor says the course isn’t meant to encroach on the cemetery, and some of the language the councillors have used as they debate the course is “inappropriate in my mind.”
“Our course layout averages more than a city block away from the cemetery,” he says. “And a couple of the councillors haven’t seen our presentations and refuse to meet with us, and I think there’s some misunderstanding about what and where we’re trying to build our course.”
The course is proposed for a section of land on a steep slope between the Burlington Northern Rail Trail and the cemetery, and would use an existing walking trail as part of its layout. The society originally proposed to install a permanent course, but has since asked for permission to put up a temporary version on a one-year test basis.
“All of our members have loved ones buried in the cemetery and we have the utmost respect for its environment,” adds Moore.
“We just don’t feel we’re going to have any effect on the cemetery and would like to be given the chance to try to course out and prove to everyone it’s a great location for a great sport.”
Councillor Deb Kozak has pushed for the disc golfers to get their one year trial run, but her motion won’t be voted on until the rules for cemetery use are changed to permit sports on the site.