We haven’t had a lot of snow for it, but the toboggan hill at The Bridges at Tillsonburg is ready to go.
“The toboggan hill is ready for use, and has been ready for use since before the holidays,” said Rick Cox, Director of Recreation, Culture and Parks, Town of Tillsonburg. “It was used when there was snow over the holidays.”
But some changes have been made to where people can toboggan. At the request of the golf course, extra fencing has been added to protect the green and bunker at the top of the hill.
“Rather than letting the sand trap, and its lip, get beat up, the golf course asked that we fence it,” said Cox. “People can still toboggan from one side or the other, but not from the green.
“It’s orange snow fence – it’s not like it’s a secret, it’s not just a rope and a stick. We’re trying to keep people out of the area the golf course has asked us specifically to try to keep people out of.”
The sand trap, which in years past has been used as a small ramp, seems to be an area of contention for some people.
On at least two occasions, including last Wednesday night, the fence was cut and the posts removed to allow access to the old makeshift ‘ramp’. On both occasions the fencing had to be reassembled by Town staff.
“It was after dark, older people. There were beer cans the first time. Some of the T-Bars had been pulled out and thrown down the hill.”
If buried under snow, Cox noted the posts can pose a serious safety hazard to anyone using the tobogganing hill.
“It’s really hard to find them if they’re under the snow. So there’s that aspect, as well as damage to the golf course. So what we’re asking folks to do is respect the setup and also let us know if it’s not the way it should be.
“We’re checking it every day, making sure it’s good to go. We’re grateful to the golf course, to partner with them, to continue to let the community use it. And we’re hoping that folks enjoy it and use it wisely and help us take care of it.”
From the Town’s perspective, the preferred toboggan experience would include parking at the golf clubhouse, accessed by John Pound Road, walking the short distance (on a paved pathway) to the hill, and then respecting the fencing.
Although parking is allowed on the south side of Baldwin Street near the hill, ropes have been set up on the golf course to form a pathway, limiting the area where people walk across the fairway to the hill to mitigate damage to the course.
“We’re happy that we can provide (tobogganing) in partnership with the golf course, but respect the setup,” Cox summed up. “Do it within the boundaries provided.
“Ideally, we want people to park at the clubhouse and walk over,” he added.