Having started his Lightning Mini Golf project back in the summer of 2021 as a means of offering Fort Collins residents a way to fight the COVID blues, Matt Gettig has been busy installing one mini golf course around town after another and he’s far from finished.
If you’ve ever taken a stroll around Old Town, it’s impossible for you to have not seen his masterpieces peppered throughout the neighborhood. All featuring various themes ranging from aliens to dinosaurs to pirate ships and more, Matt has continued to work diligently to provide the community with a fun and free way to pass the time.
Matt’s first two courses were installed along the side of his own house on the sidewalk at the corner of Whitcomb and LaPorte. Two courses turned into three which eventually turned into over eleven different locations with more in the works. Matt said most recently he was excited to accept an offer from the Lyric to join in on the fun, as well.
“They had me install three free courses on their property but they’re also wanting to expand and possibly upgrade to six holes because the current courses have been such a success there so far,” Matt said.
Additionally, while not yet set in stone, Matt said he’s looking forward to the potential of expanding even further within Fort Collins and with any luck, outside of town, as well.
“There is a proposal currently with the City of Fort Collins for me to put in free mini golf throughout the City Park area, so that’s in the works but until it’s finalized I can’t say for certain that it’s happening as of yet,” Matt said. “Another fun proposal in the works is for me to install the courses throughout the Denver Zoo, but similarly to the City Park proposal, I don’t have a guarantee on that just yet either.”
Each course is complete with its own set of clubs and balls, so there’s no need to ever worry about bringing your own. Also, every course is well lit up at night by LED lights, allowing folks to play free mini golf day and night, seven days a week, all season long. Matt personally performs all of the maintenance and upkeep and that’s where donations always come in handy. Additionally, Matt said Lighting Mini Golf is always available to partner with any other organizations that are looking to fundraise for a good cause.
“How it works is say if you host a course you don’t really have to do anything,” Matt said. “Lightning Mini Golf does all of the maintenance to keep them running all year. It does take a little extra but based on feedback I get, I do think people really appreciate it that they’re open throughout the year, they’re like a little oasis when folks are walking around.”
Matt also runs his company of 30 years called Matt’s Down to Earth Sprinklers, which also offers snow removal services, allowing Matt to keep the courses free of snow and ice and keep them playable despite bad weather.
Matt’s ultimate goal with the Old Town neighborhood is to eventually reach a full 18 courses, and he’s only seven holes away from completing that goal. Currently, at the 1816 Laporte Avenue location there are two courses, (the king’s court with a tire loop and most recently added a giant A for Aggie) which Matt said doubling up is ideal for a number of reasons.
“It’s helpful to try and double up at the same location, not just for the ease of maintenance since I’m there anyway, but also sometimes it’s just easier when people show up and there are a lot of people gathered because you’ll have multiple holes in one spot,” Matt said. “So, that’s one way I’m trying to get to 18 courses, but overall they’ve been coming along pretty good; I’m really pleased with the progress we’re making.”
An up-to-date list of all of his current courses are:
128 N Whitcomb – around the corner 529 Laporte Ave
130 N Whitcomb
Olive & Whitcomb
816 Laporte Ave
415 North Sherwood St – the “Utter Hole”
501 W Mountain Ave
611 Laporte Ave – the “Jurassic Park” course
Cherry and Irish Drive
The Lyric at 1209 N College Ave
1024 Sunset Avenue at Shields and Mulberry
Sycamore Street and Sherwood Street near Lee Martinez Farm.
If you’d like to keep in touch with Matt or help the cause with donations, please visit lightningminigolf.com/s/.