Mother’s Day ball tournament players in Oliver will have to find somewhere else to camp this year.
The Oliver Parks and Recreation Society has declined a request to allow players to camp in ball diamonds 4 and 5 (fenced area).
Recently, tournament organizers Terry Baptiste and Jamie Johnson requested the parks board allow camping in the ball fields on May 11-13.
In a letter to the board, they pointed out that teams have normally camped in Centennial RV Park, but this area was closed to make way for the new Oliver Coast Hotel.
“Over the previous years there have never been any problems with teams that have camped across the street, and we believe no issues will arise when camping in the park,” the organizers said.
It was noted that Baptiste and Johnson would be camping in the ball fields to make sure everything goes smoothly.
The organizers indicated that two or three teams (12-15 players each) would be using the camping space. This would mean six to eight RVs and one or two tents per team.
Security would be arranged if necessary, and any damage to the grass would be fixed at their cost, the organizers pointed out.
But Parks and Recreation Manager Carol Sheridan said camping in the community park is prohibited by bylaw and the board didn’t have the appetite to have the rule amended.
Sheridan also said there isn’t really enough time to pursue the camping idea in the park.
It was suggested, however, that the ball players find private property to camp on, or check into the possibility of utilizing the former campsites beside the hotel property.