The project to revitalize the mini golf course at the Denison Aquatic Center will take a big step forward next week.

A first round of demolition will take place – and the organizers are looking for help to get the work done.

“We’re asking for help from anybody with skills in the area of using a shovel and anybody that has any experience with landscape block,” said Jennifer Smith, who has been leading the project.

“Demo week number 1,” as she calls it, will take place from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. next Monday through Thursday.

“We are going to strip off all the old turf and get out all the old rock there that is just full of weeds,” Smith said. “It’s not pretty or easy to maintain.”

The subgrade under the turf will also be repaired, if enough workers are available.

A retaining wall will be repaired and a fence will be moved so it does not block the use of a picnic table.

“People will be able to use the picnic table when they want to have a snack and watch their kids at the same time,” she said.

The bridges, bench, and the course’s General Store will be stained.

Overgrown and dead greenery will be removed.

Some small portions of concrete may need to be cut out and replaced.

“Mainly we need hands and warm bodies to help get rid of the rock and to trim plants and things of that nature,” Smith said.

She encourages volunteers to dress appropriately, with tennis shoes or work boots, clothes that can get dirty and work gloves.

“There will be plenty of other opportunities, too,” Smith said for those who may be unable to help with physical labor. “This week will be more for the people who like to get their hands dirty.”

As of Thursday of this week, the project has 11 official sponsors.

Broadway Dental, Crawford County Bank, Smithfield Foods, United Bank of Iowa, Bank Iowa, Dairy Queen, 32 & U Family Dental and Orthodontic Arts, Segebart Chiropractic, Zupp and Zupp Law Firm, P.C., G&M Agency and El Michoacano Tienda y Taqueria have all signed on for two-year sponsorships for $1,000.

That puts the project past the halfway mark, as sponsorships are being solicited for each of the course’s 18 holes.

The clock on the sponsorships will not start until the project is complete, so the sponsorship period will last significantly longer than two years for sponsors that sign on now, Smith said.

Signs for the sponsoring individual or business will be placed randomly at the holes.

“Anybody who donates now is getting a little bit more value for their money because you’re getting some acknowledgment now, even though it doesn’t start until next spring,” she said.

John Granzen, who is a member of the Denison City Council and operates a plumbing business, has volunteered to repair the water feature at the course next week.

Midwest Tennis & Track Co. is donating new green turf. Denison City Council Member Corey Curnyn is the Vice President of Sales and Operations at the company.

Denison resident Joel Lopez, owner of the Shalom Store in Denison, has agreed to donate shingles and his labor to repair the General Store and the roof above the bench by the water feature.

The committee overseeing the project includes Smith, her sister, Jessica Zupp, Denison Parks and Rec Director Brian Kempfert, Parks and Rec board member Philip Wieman and Denison City Council Member Greg Miller.

Denison City Clerk Lisa Koch is in charge of collecting and accounting for the funds donated to the project.

“We’re in the process of pricing all the new materials that we need to get the best bang for our buck,” Smith said.

If everything on the list for demo week 1 is finished next week, some larger projects may take place on the mini golf course yet this year, but Smith said she expects the rest of the work will wait until next spring.

Replacing the turf and carpet after winter makes sense, she said.

“We plan to add some obstacles to several of the holes, so we’ll have to have the time over the winter months to put that together,” Smith said. “Our hope is that we can collaborate with the Denison High School woods and metals classes to get some of their input on those projects.”

Individuals interested in sponsoring the project may get a sponsorship form on the Denison Mini Golf Rehab Facebook page.

The form is also available at Denison City Hall or from Smith or Kempfert.

Smith may be reached at the Zupp and Zupp Law Firm at 712- 263-5551 or at 712-269-7847.

Kempfert’s number is 712-263-8130.

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