Tuesday, January 26, 2010


Update: The Idyllwild Miniature Chamber of Commerce (see our earlier post) has found a worthy task. First a little back history. It seems that the coalition of local business owners working on our latest tourist attraction, the Idyllwild Miniature Golf course, attracted the attention of a group known as the Global Anti-Golf Movement (GAGM.)

This group has for years been a gadfly to owners of golf courses world-wide. Mostly they criticize the environmental impact of greens-keeping practices. It turns out an astonishing amount of water is used to keep those greens so pretty, so much so that each 18 holes of golf consumes an average of 80,000 (eighty thousand) flushes of an ordinary toilet. And then there are the pesticides and fertilizers. Beyond the envoronmentalist angle, they go on to call Golf a human rights violation and say it fosters elitism.

Our project is an indoor course that takes the golfer through 18 local businesses. Teeing off at the Creek House in Fern Valley, (par 3) avoiding the water hazards in the restroom of the Idyll-Beast Research Center Museum and Gift Shoppe (par 5), a hole in one at Bubba’s books, winding through CafĂ© Aroma (par 7) and ending up, after 13 more stops including Jo Ann’s, the Liquor store and the Hardware store, at the Haunted Trailer Park. The idea of the course is to provide a good, wholesome, non-elitest leisure activity while acquainting visitors with many of our local shops and restaurants. All a shopkeeper needs to participate is a tin can tucked away in a corner and some signs directing the golfer from the “tee” by the front door, past their merchandise and to the “hole.”

When our plan was explained to the good folks at the GAGM they quickly withdrew their opposition to the proposed course. But then a splinter group, the Global Anti-Miniature Golf Association (GAMGA) reared its ugly little head. You know how they say sometimes the smallest arguments are the nastiest? Well, these difficult people mean business. It turns out they are part of the Creationist/Global Warming deniers’ camp. They claim that the little concrete volcanoes at miniature golf courses contribute more green house gases than all the world’s cars and cows combined (they heard this on the radio) and that the concrete dinosaurs embarrass parents trying to bring their children up on the biblical account of creation. Furthermore they claim that those little windmills are part of a socialist agenda to brainwash children into thinking of wind power as a friendly source of clean renewable energy instead of an economy-sinking boondoggle.

So we were more than happy when Idyllwild Miniature Chamber of Commerce head Ken Carlson offered his considerable charm and talent to explain to this latest band of misguided crusaders that our course will be nothing like that. No dinosaurs, no volcanoes, no windmills (yet,) just 18 holes (at least) of retail, dining and service. It’ll be down right patriotic. Eighteen opportunities for enterprising local business folk to come between flat-landers and their money. or pardon me, administer a little retail therapy. Imagine how easy it will be to talk a customer into another (cappuccino, squirrel neck tie, high colonic, whatever) while he or she is trying to putt their way out of Flufffy’s “sand trap” in the bathroom.

And this is so cheap. The clubs and balls we picked up at the Help Center. I don’t even need to get them back when people finish the course. I’m making the little signs myself. When the going gets tough, the enterprising get cracking. Who was it who said “It is only when you are pursued that you become swift?”

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