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County park gets more land to play disc golf


By Sally Voth svoth@nvdaily.com

The Shenandoah County Park grew by about 10 acres following Tuesday's Board of Supervisors meeting.

The panel agreed on a 4-2 vote to transfer 9.9 acres from the County Farm to the adjacent 62-acre park, allowing for expansion of the disc-golf course.

The County Farm advisory and the parks and recreation advisory committees had been dickering over the use of those 10 acres, with the former preferring to keep it in pastureland.

The farm is home to the county's alms house, which houses clients of Shenandoah Alliance for Shelter, and also includes about 65 acres that would be used to demonstrate grazing and forestry.

District 3 Supervisor David Ferguson and District 1 Supervisor Dick Neese were the only members of the board to vote against the plan.

"I oppose the encroachment on the County Farm of any additional acreage," Ferguson said prior to the vote. "There's a way that you could handle this."

Rather than siphoning off the land to the park now, the county could negotiate a short-term lease of the 10 acres in question in its requests for proposals to farm the rest of the land under a 10-year lease, Ferguson said.

"What's the necessity to strip that off right now and give it to use for parks?" he asked.

The county doesn't have the money to maintain it now, he said.

"My proposal is to include it as the county farm, but only bring it under contract for a short term, but when and if it needs to be part of the park, it has to come back to the board for action," Ferguson said.

District 4 Supervisor Sharon Baroncelli said, "Wasn't this all discussed by the joint advisory committee? This was tossed back and forth for a year-and-a-half."

Parks and Recreation Director Pam Sheets said about 4 1/2 of the 10 acres are forested right now, and with the timeframe for fencing, there won't be any additional land to mow now.

"It's not exactly the Taj Mahal when it comes to land," District 5 Supervisor Dennis Morris said.

Ferguson pointed out the numerous town and county parks in the area.

"We live in a rural area with a river going through it," he said. "We have all the national forest...how much park do we need?"

Only Neese supported a motion proposed by Ferguson to include a short-term lease on the 10 acres as part of a larger 10-year lease.

"I only seconded that because he's leaving it intact for a while," Neese said. "I personally want to see it intact forever. I think it sets a bad example to us to the public. Here we're pushing agriculture [conservation]."

District 2 Supervisor Steve Baker made the passing motion to delineate the land to the park, saying both committees had reached that as a compromise.




19 Comments



Shenandoah County is big....which part is this happening in? Woodstock, Strasburg, Maurertown?
Personally, I would LOVE to see some of the parks have walking and bike paths like those in James Barnett in Winchester.

Jim Barnett not James :/

The county park is the one in Maurertown, the rest are town parks.


Doesn't the county park have a walking/biking path? I thought I saw one from the playground, but I've never followed it to see if it's a complete loop, or how long it is.

I think Shenandoah county needs to build a 18 hole golf course near the center of the county. It would make money, other counties have done this with great success.

I do not support selling off a piece of our county's agricultural heritage for disc golf. I would support Ferguson's suggestion. In 10 years, will there still be interest in disc golf? Is anyone in Shenandoah County interested in disc golf now (other than Parks & Rec Director)?

I agree with Maximilian. Disc golf is not the trend in parks anymore. I feel it is a waste of space. What about using that land for a dog park? As of now, you can't let your dogs off a leash in the park. Look at the dog park in Jim Barnett Park. What a great use of land! I'm a citizen of Shenandoah County but drive my dogs to Winchester just so they can run without a leash. It seems to me the director only wants to bring in uses of the park that she is interested in. Why don't they have a vote with the citizens of Shenandoah County and find out what we want??? I'm sure the director will enjoy playing disc golf by herself in the next couple years since she did build herself her own disc golf course. (If she is around!)

That park does have a walking path that goes in a big circle. My thing is, I live in Woodstock, I don't want (or think we should have to) drive outside of town for a walking or biking path. You can walk anywhere. Riding bike however, there's no place safe. I don't think it's safe or okay for our kids to ride their bikes in the street. Most of them don't wear helmets. My friend's son was riding his bike on the side of the road (in the grass), and was hit by a car, coming towards him. I'd like a place for them to go where they can ride freely, and not have to worry about getting hit. Strasburg's park has a really nice bike path that goes along the river. That would be awesome here.

Another fantastic job by our over spending Board of Stupervisors.

Hi clynette81,
I agree, the bike path at Strasburg's park is very nice. Two other local examples of public trails that folks in Harrisonburg are trying to get off the ground are the Northend Greenway (http://northendgreenway.org/) and Bluestone Trail (http://www.harrisonburgva.gov/bluestone-trail).

I think there will be alot of interest in disc golf in the future, even more than there is now. I've been playing for a few years and speaking from an informed position, I'm amazed at the interest in the sport, both among casual players and serious competitors.

I've been to courses all over Virginia and other states, playing in tournamnents as well as enjoying the game with friends. It's an excellent use of land that maintains much of the natural condition while providing traffic that can discourage undesirable traffic. Many courses are built for that reason.

I was at an event at the park just recently and the feeling among the attendees was that the course is a destination and a welcome addition to area courses. There are 12 within fifty miles of the park, many of them are newly installed.

The park representative was on hand for the event and was very proud to explain to us the plans for the 10 acres. She didn't seem too interested in playing, though. I think the comments of a personal nature (obviously uninformed) are out of line. Have a nice day

First, I have been running PROFESSIONAL disc golf events in the Shenandoah area for 12 years. They have been at Sherando, Signal KNOB (Private course in Strasburg) and Maurertown - Signal View. I,also, will be introducing a new event at Jim Barnett Park this year. All events are annually and none have ever been cancelled - they only grow in size and participation.

I will address a few of the comments above and also educate the ignorant about the sport of disc golf. Furthermore, I will paint a TRUE picture of the park director, Pam Sheets - to correct the ridiculous and immature remarks above.

I will talk about various subjects in their own post - so anyone who may want to comment may do so....

Next - I will let you know about Pam Sheets - an EXCELLENT Park Director.

Proof and FACTS are easily witnessed with just a description of ONE day at the park. It was overcast and rained for hours, but here is what I noted about the day:

- We had an great PDGA Disc Golf event - started at 8AM and we left at 7PM - an all day wonderful experience for everyone. There were local players along with people who traveled from NOVA, Richmond, Delaware and even Pennsylvania.

- A HUGE cook-out utilizing one of the pavilions - 25-40 people minimum - I am guessing a family event or reunion.

- Dog walkers enjoying the SAFE and serene surroundings of the park.

- Many kids using the Basketball courts.

- People enjoying the Tennis courts.

- A softball game, or two, were played while we were there - on the beautiful field.

- Even at 7PM, when I was leaving the park, there was a family of 6-7 people playing on the basketball courts and running around having fun.

IMO - what I have seen over the past 4 years has been nothing short of OUTSTANDING. Pam Sheets deserves many many KUDOS verse these political rants with obvious agendas and completely misinformed opinions that have no place in a reasonable discussion about a park they will most likely NEVER STEP FOOT IN during their entire lives.

Is there a reason it takes hours for a post to be "reviewed"?

If you place more than two links in a post, it goes to "review", which means trashed. That is the only certain way I know of.

Can not post more than 2 links...wow!

Here are some links to educate people about the sport of disc golf...with over 3 to 4000 courses and 50,000 + members - the sport is doing nothing but GROWING.

This is a NATIONWIDE program that is being adopted in hundreds of P.E. programs across the USA - http://www.edgediscgolf.org/

This is an annual fund/food raising event that has fed MILLIONS in its history - http://www.icebowlhq.com/index.php?Itemid=82&id=14&option=com_content&task=view

The PDGA has a membership of 50,000+ and is only growing. Disc Golf is welcoming to any age and ability along with a very diverse economic spectrum.

Here is a link to the PDGA itself -

http://www.pdga.com/

Here is one with events that happen weekly on an annula basis across the nation - also Canada, Europe and even Japan.

http://www.pdga.com/tour_schedule

more....

The Collegiate levels have been busy as well with this "declining" sport...

http://www.ncdgc.com/

As for the posters above, who are very uninformed about the sport and their OWN park --- Please research and read before you continue to make complete asses of yourselves.

If people want to blindly follow their political agendas and continue to be "sheep" to their "party" of the ONE PARTY SYSTEM...(A little secret, each "party" is a different brand of the SAME PARTY - similar to Coke and Pepsi)

Then lets restore the historic uses of the park:

Invite PROSTITUTION back and return the status of a DRUG use haven to the park...have fun with all that - it would be cheaper and cost less to the county - RIGHT!?!

I think the shendoah parks and recreation dept. are great. I dealt with them when they were at the old edinurg school. I have yet to deal with them out of the new location. Oops I almost put an "e" on location. But genuinely, the two gals I dealt with were good to deal with about arranging pavillion rentals for birthdays/reunions.



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