Hayne Palmour IV/North County Times
Geoff Bolen tees off by throwing a disc at a nine-hole disc golf course at Montiel Park in San Marcos on Sunday.
Cal State San Marcos' budget was cut by $14 million this year. Enrollment, classes and services were slashed. Prospective students were told this summer that they couldn't enroll, and teachers were told they had to stay home more often, cutting into their salaries.
So how does the university deal with this financial mess? Frisbee golf.
The university is planning to build a frisbee golf course on its campus, the North County Times reported Tuesday. And we're not talking about a pedestrian nine-hole course like that one that's already in San Marcos, at Montiel Park. This will be a full-fledged, state-of-the-art 18-hole course, the best of the best.
It may seem like a strange time to build the course, with the school -- like all of California's public schools -- grappling with massive budget cuts.
"How can we continue to educate and support students with quality when our budget was dramatically slashed by $14 million, or 20 percent of state support, in one year?" wrote CSUSM president Karen Haynes in an editorial in the North County Times in August.
Haynes said the topic is robbing her of sleep. She will no doubt rest easier knowing that Cal State officials launched a campaign to raise $20,000 to build the 18-hole disc golf course, which will take players all over the university's Twin Oaks Valley Road campus.
Campus officials, faculty members and students have already lined up to support the project -- because, honestly, if presented with the choice of donating to academic programs or frisbee golf, which would you choose? -- and the San Diego Aces disc golf association has donated $2,500 to help build it.
Campus recreation department Director Hugo Lecomte said the department has raised about $14,000 of the $20,000 it needs to build the course, which could open in the spring.
Lecomte said Friday that the project will help the university achieve dual goals of encouraging students to be physically active and attracting more community members. No word yet how many credits students will get for the sure-to-come frisbee golf classes, or if they'll be able to major in the sport. We sure hope so.