The McLaren Park Community
speaks out


Notes from neighbors to SMP

To whom it may concern,  

I’m a resident of San Francisco and a newly citizen of the United States of America. I enjoy McLaren Park almost every day. I have enjoyed it for all of the years I have lived here. Please do not allow a golf course to disturb the last true forest like park in the city. I had planned on coming to the meeting and raising my voice in public but I had a work commitment that I could not escape. I want my voice to be heard. PLEASE keep McLaren park the way it is.


Walking McLaren Park
Walking the trails of McLaren Park
SMP photo by Ed Brownson


Is it true?  I just looked up my beloved park on the internet for fun and was shocked and dismayed to hear the golfers came back to try to install frisbee golf courses. I've moved away but was active in 1997 to block them from this.  I still have family nearby the park and still know this is a unique treasure that needs protection from this.  Let me know if it's not too late to help.

Geraldine Gutsch, in email to SMP feb 10, 2011

Neighbors of San Francisco's McLaren Park
talk about what the park means to them

SMP Video by Sarah Lipkin



I attended both meetings, as well as the "tour" last week. I already emailed Mr. Pon and expressed my disappointment in their questionable procedures. I also told him that the issue of this project is, as far as we were concerned, unresolved. One thing I can recommend to everyone is to mail a real paper letter to the officials in question. My political science teacher, Dr. Schubert, told me that a written, paper letter is worth at least 100 phone calls, and at least 20 emails. This is because it takes more effort to sit down and write a letter and mail it! So get out those pens and paper everyone. Plus, it's harder for representatives to ignore a hard copy.



Bird watching in McLaren Park
Birdwatching in McLaren Park
SMP photo by Ken McGary


I've been watching this issue closely, including attending this week's packed meeting on the issue. Please put me on your listserv so I can be as supportive as possible.

Thanks! S.M.







I am a native San Franciscan and life-long resident.  I am a 30-year resident of the Crocker Amazon/Excelsior neighborhood.  My property tax bill comes to this neighborhood.  My voter information comes to this neighborhood. McLaren Park is my neighborhood park.

McLaren Park is a beautiful, albeit often cold and windy, oasis in the middle of a great city.  From the seniors practicing Tai Chi, to the families with their children, to the picnickers, to the folks walking their dogs, to the tennis players, to the hikers and strollers, it is a place for all sorts of activities as well as a place to admire the beauty and majesty of nature.

Dogwalking in McLaren Park
SMP photo by Joan Loeffler

I am particularly concerned about the way this project has been pushed through without proper public notification and, in view of the environmental destruction proposed, without an environmental impact report.  This smacks of back room politics and violates the transparency in government touted by the Mayor and Board of Supervisors.

I request an immediate moratorium to any legal agreement with the S.F. Disc Golf Club, a full notification process be performed and an Environmental Impact Review be conducted.  We need to preserve our natural resources, not destroy them.

Pat Villegas
--from letter to Supervisor John Avalos

​I am one of the many daily McLaren park users who are opposed to the proposed disc golf course.  And I am one of the many San Francisco citizens who are deeply troubled that the Rec and Park commission approved the course years ago without properly notifying the surrounding neighborhoods, including my own Excelsior neighborhood.  

​I have reviewed the information provided by the Rec and Park department, as well as by community organizations and oppose the project because it degrades the natural, wild beauty of the park and because such course have historically damaged the environment.  If built, my daily jog through woodland and gorgeous vistas will be marred by ugly disc “baskets” that look like chain link trash cans.  

​Accordingly, I strongly demand that the City declare an immediate moratorium on any legal agreement to construct a course in McLaren Park.  Moreover, if you are of the opinion that the public simply doesn’t understand the project, there can be no opposition to conducting a full public notification and input process, as should have been completed years ago.

​I will be following the issue closely and hope that you recognize the importance that us “southeasterners” place on our beloved McLaren Park.  

​Sheila Sexton
from letter to Supervisor John Avalos and the Rec/Park Commission, July 17, 2010

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