My club also learned the hard way not to rely on a verbal agreement with a parks department manager. We made that same mistake when expanding our course, had a well-respected, experienced professional designer lay out one of the best courses in the state, installed the baskets, had all the former haters of the course suddenly raving about how awesome it was, and then within a week of the baskets going in the ground, the newly appointed parks management came after us with "WTF" questions, threatening to shut us out of the park entirely because we had broken the rules and had occupied a lot of land that we weren't even supposed to be using. We explained the misunderstanding to the parks folks, patched up that relationship, and everything turned out okay in the end, but the fallout nearly tore our club apart, and probably ruined more than a couple of friendships among the club's leadership.
Ultimately we signed the park use handbook, got appropriate insurance for the club at about $400 a year, talked our longsuffering designer (God bless his soul!) into coming up with a new design after the park defined for us the land we were actually allowed to use, and we still got a solid course out of it. It sucks that we didn't get the championship quality layout with what people were quickly calling some of the best holes in the whole darned state, but we got a good one with some great features, and what's more important is the club has been able to turn what was pretty much literally a nightmare into a strong, trusting, symbiotic relationship with the county parks department. We're still working on the personal relationships between club members, but time heals all wounds, so I'm still holding out hope for that.
Last edited by Lewis; 01-06-2013 at 04:56 AM.