New bumper boats for little ones in Parksville

Paradise Mini Golf and Fun Park has applied for a zoning amendment to allow for a smaller version of bumper boats attractions

Paradise Mini-Golf and Fun Park wants to stop disappointing the “under-44-inch set.”

To that end, they have asked Parksville city council for permission to add another set of bumper boats at their iconic park on Island Highway. One has to be 44 inches or taller to ride the current bumper boats.

“They get a lot of crying kids who are under 44 inches tall,” explained Nigel Gray, a consultant who spoke to council on behalf of the Paradise park’s owners.

The park needs a zoning bylaw amendment to add the new feature, although the expansion seems to align with the current zoning and Official Community Plan.

“We do kind of envisions this as a housekeeping item,” said Gray, adding that the owners of Paradise park want to continually keep up with trends in the summer-fun industry.

“The owners intend to keep improving,” he said.

In order to allow the new bumper boats, city staff are suggesting a change for the property’s zoning to “fairground use.” Staff said this will allow the owners more flexibility to add or change features in the future.

There are details still to be worked out between city staff and the owners, but council gave the zoning amendment bylaw first reading on Monday night.

“I think this is a really good idea, a good extension of what’s there,” said Coun. Sue Powell.

In other news from city council’s meeting Monday night:

• The city itself is the applicant in an attempt to change the zoning of 183 McVickers St. to “downtown commercial.” The property owner by the city now has a couple of different zonings and downtown commercial would bring it in line with neighbouring properties. The zoning amendment bylaw passed two readings on Monday and a public hearing is scheduled for Dec. 5 at

6 p.m. at city hall.

• Parksville now has a bylaw officer to work on evenings and weekends. The position was approved months previous, but now the officer is in place and needed a motion from city council in order to have the authority required to enforce bylaws.

• There was some talk about the new Tidal Treasures program on the beachfront. In other jurisdictions, people looking for these glass treasures have been trampling grass and going on private property.

People are reminded that none of the treasures are hidden in grassy areas or on private property.

• Coun. Kirk Oates got a motion passed instructing staff to apply for up to $7 million of grant money from the federal government’s clean water/waste water fund, money Oates said could offset the increased costs of the city’s new water treatment plant.

Staff had until Thursday to get the application to the government.