Reed City disc golf course back on track

Completion timeline up in the air

The 18 hole disc golf course plans for Rambadt Park in Reed City are underway again. Completion of the project will depend on the availability of contractors, which has been hinder by the COVID-19 shutdowns. (Herald Review file photo)

The 18 hole disc golf course plans for Rambadt Park in Reed City are underway again. Completion of the project will depend on the availability of contractors, which has been hinder by the COVID-19 shutdowns. (Herald Review file photo)

REED CITY — Plans for the disc golf course at Rambadt Park in Reed City are underway once again.

City Manager Ron Howell informed city council during its recent meeting that bid specs are being sent out for materials needed to complete the course. They are expected to be back by the April 19 council meeting.

“We have gotten to the point where we are ready for bids for buying the materials, but then you get to the actual marking of the course,” Howell said. “If you are going to install the course, the actual layout of the baskets and the concrete pads within the course needs to be laid out in detail so the contractor can see what it will be.”

Howell said it was necessary to have the markings for the pads and baskets, along with the pathways laid out in detail prior to having contractors bid on the installation of the course.

“Early on there were flags in the ground nailing down the actual locations of the pads and baskets,” Howell said. “When we did the select cut, those were destroyed or moved. Now we need to go back in and reestablish where they were.”

Howell suggested they contact Steve Hedstrom, who was instrumental in laying out the course originally, and ask him to return and remark everything.

“I think it is worthwhile to have him come back in to do that – to lay out everything based on the original design – if he is willing,” Howell added.

Department of Public works director Rich Rehkopf said that there was still a lot of work that would need to be done before the golf course could be put in.

“We tried walking through there the other day, and it is like a jungle,” Rehkopf said. “I would like for each council member to go and actually walk into the woods and take a look. There is still a ton of work to do out there.”

Rehkopf added that they could use a forestry mulcher to clear the brush and tree tops that are left, but that it would cost around $1,000 a day for the equipment, plus the cost of manpower to do the work. That could be done in five or six days, he said.

Council member Dan Burchett said there had been some conversations about possibly having volunteers in the community, or even those interested in using the golf course, to assist in clearing some of the brush from the course area.

“What if we were to have Steve (Hedstrom) come and mark the locations from pads to baskets for each one, then the cleaning would be just those trails at this point,” Burchett said “Everything else would be just natural and could even be a barrier that the golfers have to go around. If we can say, ‘this is what we want and where we need the paths cleared out,’ then I don’t see an issue. We could get those that are interested to help.”

Rehkopf said that if there are treetops — left on the ground after the cutting — that are not in the way of the course, then it would be his suggestion to just leave them and focus on the ones that are in the way.

“There are a lot of tops around those flags that are still there, and there are a lot of flags missing, so we definitely need him (Hedstrom) to come back,” he said.

“My recommendation would be to reach out to Steve (Hedstrom) and tell him we are going to buy the materials and will have everything we need for this project, but we need him to come out and lay out the course in detail so that the contractors can bid on the installation, Howell said.

“Part of the original agreement with him was to oversee the installation and everything else,” he added, “so we need to see if he is willing to come back and assist with the contractors and everything else.”

Burchett agreed to reach out to Hedstrom and see if they can get things going again.

Howell said the completion of the course will depend on a lot of factors, including working with Hedstrom, clearing the fairways and getting contractors for the installation of the pads and baskets, and signs.

“Council is urging us to get it completed as soon as possible,” Howell said. “However, installation will depend on who is available. Once we get a bid, the contractor may say they can not do the work until September. They may be too busy right now to get to it right away. We just don’t know, yet."