By Elisha Dorfsmith
In a 4-2 vote the Flagstaff City Council approved a land lease for a future snow park on McMillan Mesa at tonight’s council meeting. The lease passed after a motion proposed by Mayor Nabours removing hours of operation and lighting from the lease agreement was approved. The fine details of the operation will now be worked out through the CUP process in planning and zoning.
About 150 supporters and opponents of the snow park packed City Hall in a nearly 50/50 split. Many supporters arrived with children in tow wearing T-shirts that said “I want the Flagstaff Sno-Park.”
Opponents argued the usual traffic and lighting concerns with a few new concerns thrown in. One speaker claimed that using reclaimed water on the snow hill would hurt future generations by damaging the ovaries and testicles of the children playing there. Another woman said she did not like the idea of “listening to the sound of human beings sledding.”
At one point, a woman disagreed with how the meeting was being run and started causing a scene and yelling at the council “you guys suck, go to hell!” She was quickly escorted out by police.
Supporters saw things differently. They argued that every known sledding hill in town has been fenced to keep kids out and they believe kids need a safe place to play in the snow in the winter. A 14-year-old girl made the case for reclaimed water for snow making saying if it’s considered safe for the fields at her school it should be safe enough to sled on.
After tonight’s Council decision the Flagstaff Sno Park posted the following on their facebook page:
“Thank you to all of the supporters who came out tonight. The lease has been approved!
If you received one of our shirts tonight, it is good for one free admission to the park when it opens. Again, Thank You!”