Frisbees could be whizzing between the trees of Art Gibbon Park if the city approves a proposed disc golf course for the Rosemont location.
The Nelson Disc Golf Society has asked city council for permission to build a $9,000 permanent nine-basket course in the park after Interior Health said no to an unofficial course next to the vacant Mount St. Francis.
Society director Iraleigh Anderson said city staff suggested the park as a possible location in October. That led to the proposal presented during a committee of the whole meeting last month.
“Art Gibbon Park is perfect because it lends itself to shorter holes that provide a challenge for skilled players but are also very approachable for newer players,” said Anderson.
The disc golf society, which has approximately 40 members, has tried for several years to find land for a permanent course. In 2011, city council denied a proposal to install a course in an area above the Nelson cemetery because the society did not yet have official status.
That plan also caused concern for its proximity to the cemetery and the Great Northern Rail Trail.
“The limiting factor in Nelson is land,” said Anderson. “We’ve been unable, despite putting proposal after proposal together, to find a site that works here. There are a lot of recreation opportunities and competition for use of park space.”
The proposed Art Gibbon course would be set in the wooded area adjacent to the skate park. The Nelson Cycling Club operates a mountain bike course in the park, and Anderson said the Daybreak Rotary Club also has a proposal in the works for the park.
Both organizations, Anderson said, are being consulted with so the park can be used by everyone.
He added no trees would be removed for the course, and the baskets are easy to relocate.
“This plan is considered a draft and we know that to have a successful project it requires consultation and co-operation with other groups,” he said.
The society is not asking the city for funding. It currently has $3,000 from the Nelson and District Credit Union, and Anderson believes the remaining $6,000 can be raised from private stakeholders.
An open house is also scheduled for April 4 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Rosemont Elementary where community members can see the plans in detail and speak with society members.
“We want to be able to work through whatever issues come up, because we’d be really grateful for the opportunity to bring this sport to Nelson and have it be something people can participate in,” said Anderson.