“Underutilized” Sheffield Park set to shine

Sheffield Park, located at 1923 Cutty Bay Ct. in Oldsmar, is about to be transformed, thanks to the addition of a new disc golf course and a public art installation.

Sheffield Park, located at 1923 Cutty Bay Ct. in Oldsmar, is about to be transformed, thanks to the addition of a new disc golf course and a public art installation.

The City of Oldsmar is home to 10 parks and preserves, so it’s only natural that some get more attention from residents and visitors—and city officials—than others.

Canal Park, with its world class BMX track and plan to turn it into a multi-purpose sports complex, Mobbly Bayou Preserve and its zipline adventure park, plus R.E. Olds and Veterans Memorial parks, tend to attract a wide range of guests for a wide variety of reasons.

But thanks to some new projects, including a disc golf course and a public art installation, and a renewed focus from city officials, previously “underutilized” Sheffield Park could soon be transformed into another crown jewel in the city’s public park system.

Oldsmar City Council member Jerry Beverland.

Oldsmar City Council member Jerry Beverland.

“Sheffield Park is an incredible piece of land that we own and it’s…not utilized hardly at all,” City Council member Jerry Beverland said during the March 7 council meeting.

When Mayor Doug Bevis suggested the park was underutilized, Beverland added, “It’s extremely underutilized.”

Beverland said there is enough land at the park, which is located at 1923 Cutty Bay Court in northwest Oldsmar, to do many different things there, to which Bevis replied that was the intention behind installing the disc golf course there.

“I think that’s why the Frisbee golf wound up going down there,” he said. “It will attract people down there.”

Indeed, a trip to Sheffield Park, which is somewhat hidden at the back of a residential neighborhood, reveals a quiet, picturesque setting with a dog park, a playground, a baseball field and tennis courts, and plenty of wide open space, space that, as Beverland mentioned, that could soon be filled with disc golf fans.

A disc golf course is in the process of being installed at Sheffield Park in Oldsmar.

A disc golf course is in the process of being installed at Sheffield Park in Oldsmar.

According to course designer Trevor Toenjes, the plan is to make Oldsmar’s disc golf course one of the best of its kind in the Tampa Bay area.

“I’ve designed this to be a signature disc golf course that will help put Oldsmar on the map as far as disc golf,” Toenjes, who has designed several courses in the area and runs the disc golf program at Spectrum Field in Clearwater, said from the site earlier this week.

“There are no disc golf courses in North Pinellas County, so this course will attract players from all over the area.”

Toenjes said he has been working with city officials since December laying out the course, which has involved the clearing of massive clumps of Brazilian peppers as well as fitting the course into the park’s unique layout.

Space needed to be cleared at Sheffield Park in oldsmar for the incoming disc golf course.

Space needed to be cleared at Sheffield Park in Oldsmar for the incoming disc golf course.

“You have some parts of the park that are wide open and completely flat, and then you have some parts that are hilly and covered in trees and vegetation,” Toenjes said. “So it’s been a challenge to make sure the course is laid out just right based on the parameters we have to work with.”

Toejnes said they hope to have a soft opening for the course in May with an eye towards a grand opening sometime this summer.

“The City has been absolutely phenomenal with their commitment to making this happen,” he said.

“I’m excited about what we’re going to do here.”

In addition to the disc golf, the council elected to install the painted crosswalk project proposed by the North Pinellas Cultural Alliance at Sheffield Park, also.

During the meeting, the mayor and other officials said they were unsure of the status of the project, but according to NPCA board member and former Council member Linda Norris, the project is moving forward.

North Pinellas Cultural Alliance officials, including former Oldsmar City Council member Linda Norris (pink hat) pose at the bonefish crosswalk in Dunedin in December 2016.

North Pinellas Cultural Alliance officials, including Linda Norris (pink hat), at the bonefish crosswalk in Dunedin in December 2016.

“We’re in the process of making a resource kit to present to artists that will show them the criteria involved with the project, then we will put out a call for artists and eventually bring their ideas to the council,” Norris said by phone.

“We have to give them ideas, and all they have to do is choose the one they like and tell us where they want it!”

Based on the council’s plan to make Sheffield Park a priority, that decision has already been made.

“Sheffield Park will be the next big push for the city of Oldsmar,” Beverland promised.

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