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FULLERTON : Hostel Seeks to Halt Golf Ball Deluge

September 23, 1993|WILLSON CUMMER

A youth hostel that has been bombarded by stray golf balls from a driving range next door may have to postpone a fall fund-raising concert if a fence is not built soon between the two establishments, a hostel official said.

"We've continued to have a deluge of balls," said Robert Delamater, manager of the Fullerton Hacienda AYH Hostel at 1700 N. Harbor Blvd. "People frequently mention to me that golf balls have gone sailing by them while they've been playing volleyball."

Brooks Corbin, part-owner of the driving range, said he hopes to begin on Friday the installation of a $10,000 net to stop the stray golf balls. Corbin said he awaits formal approval from the Army Corps of Engineers, which owns the land. The net should be up before the concert, Corbin said.

A concert of local bands billed as the "Hostelpalooza," scheduled for Oct. 2, has already been delayed once because of the lack of protection from the driving range, Delamater said.

The hostel, which can accommodate 15 to 20 travelers, had to close last winter from December through May 1, Delamater said, because of poor business. A fund-raiser could keep the doors open year-round, he said.

The Army Corps of Engineers is likely to approve the netting construction plans by Friday, according to Christine Candland, a management chief in the corps' real estate division.

Corbin said the new net will be 240 feet long and 40 feet high. Because it will be placed on a hill, it will be 70 feet above the golf tees, he said.

The plan has already been approved by the city, but construction must wait for approval from the corps, said Kay Miller, the city's superintendent of community services.

The Fullerton Golf Training Center, at 1600 N. Harbor Blvd., opened in May with 37 spots for the driving range. Guests at the hostel soon began to complain of wayward golf balls.

Delamater said an outside light was smashed by a ball and another ball shattered a sliding-glass door that was leaning against a wall.

Corbin had agreed to put up netting in July, but the approval process has been slow. Once the Army Corps of Engineers gives permission, the netting should be up in three or four days, Corbin said.

Delamater has taken the delays in stride. "We had to delay the concert already once so that we could be certain that the fence would be up," he said. "I think it's just the normal goings-on and just the red tape."

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