BURLINGTON — For sale: one home in Burlington, P.E.I., in good condition and close to amenities and popular tourist areas.
Oh, and it comes with the biggest go-kart facility east of Montreal.
That’s right, Burlington Amusement Park is up for sale for a little less than $350,000.
One of the oldest amusement parks left on P.E.I., Burlington Go-Karts, as it’s colloquially known, is the sight of many a memory for Islanders and visitors alike.
And it will continue to be, hopefully for a long time to come, said co-owner Matthew Jelley.
“The property is at a really good stage that it’s a good time now for us to look at some new options for expansion, or to look at maybe letting someone else take a turn,” said Jelley, president of Maritime Fun Group, the umbrella company that also owns Shinning Waters and Sandspit in Cavendish and Magic Mountain waterpark in Moncton.
But just because the park is for sale doesn’t necessarily mean Jelley is going to sell it, the company is leaving its options open.
“After 10 or 12 years it’s good to think about new ideas, so by putting it up there (for sale), we’re getting some feedback and getting some ideas. So, whether it’s finding a partner or finding a purchaser, we’re looking at all available options,” he said.
The park remains profitable, he added, and it’s fully operational. It will open as scheduled on Victoria Day this year.
But there are some potential challenges for buyers, Jelley admitted, especially if they are non-residents, as the Lands Protection Act covers the property.
“If you’re trying to buy it within a company, you’re covered by the Lands Protection Act. Some people just hear that it has to be approved by the provincial cabinet and for a purchaser from out of province, no matter how much you reassure them, that sounds intimidating, even if it is a relatively routine procedure,” he said.
But the business has a lot going for it, Jelley added.
It’s been recently renovated, and there’s been a lot of money put into upkeep in recent years.
There’s also a home on site and plenty of space on the property for expansion.
The 9.7-acre property, with its extensive go-kart tracks, batting cages, bumper boats, mini golf, restaurant, house and more, was quietly listed for sale last year.
It was eventually taken off the market and then re-entered last fall with more prominent advertising.
Jelley purchased the property in 2002 with business partner Adam Hickey.
The men were in university at the time and were also managing Sandspit, but they were still looking for a business of their own.
“We both had very fond memories growing up of spending time at Burlington and on the go karts. We saw it as a challenge that we were particularly well suited to take on,” he said.
The property had been closed for a couple of years previous to their purchase and needed a lot of repair work, but they managed to bring the place up to code and it has been operating successfully ever since.