Lawn bowling rolls on while swimming sinks

I wrote a story for today’s paper about all the money that’s been raised to build a lawn-bowling green and revive the sport of lawn bowling in Mitchell. One man, Rod Titze, has raised $20,000 in private donations and has snagged an additional $15,000 from the Mitchell City Council. That’s $35,000 for a sport that hasn’t existed in Mitchell for 15 or more years.

Meanwhile, there’s a debate raging over whether the school district will close its Middle School pool to save $67,000. It’s a facility that has served thousands of people over several decades and continues to be vital to the local swim club and others.

Does anybody else find it somewhat odd that $35,000 can be raised by one guy in less than a year for a sport that few people have ever heard of, while at the same time the school district stands on the brink of closing an existing, heavily used pool to save $67,000?

I’m not trying to take a position on either issue. I don’t know whether funding lawn bowling was the right move for the City Council, or whether attempting to close the pool is the right move for the Board of Education.

It just seems weird that both things are happening at once. One year ago, I doubt there were many who predicted lawn bowling would have a brighter future than swimming.

7 thoughts on “Lawn bowling rolls on while swimming sinks

  1. How many people heard of frisbee golf a few years ago? I believe the big differance is that the $35,000.00 is basically a one time expense and the $67,000.00 is a yearly expense. And when a well groomed patch of grass can keep the seniors off the streets I’m all for it!!!! 🙂

  2. The annual maintenance of the lawn-bowling green is estimated at $3,000. You’re right — that’s far less than the pool. I’m not saying one is exactly like the other. I just think the two situations make an interesting comparison.

  3. I remember going lawn bowling with my Grandpa in the late 70’s at Hitchcock–how is it that expensive to get a sport started that just needs a lawn?

  4. I presume the grass needs to be continually cared for like a green at a golf course. It needs to be mowed, watered, fertilized, weeded, etc. You don’t just plant grass and then never care for it again.

  5. If the city had any sense they would work with the college to put together funding for an activities center that would benefit both. DWU needs some new facilities, and so does the public school system.

  6. “Government does nothing well.”
    When members of the private sector of our great county gets together, make a plan, and carry it out It either stands on its own merits or falls by the wayside.
    When GOVERNMENT–(the public school system)does something –“if it moves tax it, if it keeps moving regulate it, if it stops moving subsidize it.”
    Maybe a nongovernment group should take over the pool! Those who want to swim should pay for the swimming pool costs.

  7. I’m no expert, but I know that greens — the golf and lawn-bowling variety — are incredibly expensive to build and maintain. That’s why you see so many small-town golf courses with sand greens or artificial-turf greens. They can’t afford real greens.

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