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Concerns over new sledding hill surface

MASON CITY – Two citizens with concerns over a new sledding hill project on Mason City’s south side spoke before the Mason City Parks and Recreation Board Tuesday.

Marcia Boster (pictured, left) and Jean Loes explained to the park board that neighbors were not approached by volunteer Ozzie Ohl, who is spearheading the project.

Despite claims that several stories about the sledding hill were run in local media, and the fact that the item had been on Park Board meeting agendas in recent months, Boster claimed that most all the neighbors she approached about the project had no idea that a sledding hill is scheduled to be built in Georgia Hanford Park.

She said most of them were neutral or still in favor of the project, with a couple of them against it.

Boster read from a prepared statement, saying that she is not against the project, but that she hopes the Park Board, Ohl and the neighborhood can work together to protect the area.

Boster said neighbors were most concerned about lights that are planned to be installed at the new hill, as well as parking concerns, and the disruption of existing trails.

The board agreed to approach Ohl and ask for a compromise on lighting.  “That would cut his funding needs in half,” said board member Frank Pearson.

Ohl has continued to fund raise for the project and has even chipped in out of his own pocket to get the ball rolling.  He hopes to have the sledding hill ready to go yet this winter… provided there is snow.

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