Future trivia nugget: The largest and smallest U.S. states were the last to get their first listed course, both in 1999.
America's Earliest Disc Golf Courses - Updated December 2017
Updated December 2017
My name is Eric Vandenberg #3089 and I am the volunteer PDGA Course Archivist. In 2012, aided by PDGA Disc Golf Course Directory Editor Cliff Towne #5450, I started what has become several projects to find and track disc golf courses and have compiled a database of known disc golf courses by course list, directory, and other sources. In the process, several particularly interesting documents have come to my attention which have helped to narrow down the installation dates for many of these courses. The following is a brief history of disc golf course lists and directories as I know it and a list of the earliest 5 or so courses by state. The information below is culled not only from these historical lists and directories, but is also based on input from many disc golf luminaries and hundreds of hours of searching the Internet and other published material.
Evolution of the Disc Golf Course Directory
In July of 1977 the inventor of the original Disc Golf Pole Hole, founder of Disc Golf Association (DGA), and former VP of Wham-O Inc., "Steady" Ed Headrick #001 sent a letter to the Executives of Wham-O listing 22 courses that he had installed (or was about to install).
In December of that same year (by my calculations), DGA created a list of 29 courses which they included with one of the Wham-O disc models that they were selling. Bill Burns #581, former PDGA Commissioner and one-time Junior Champion, filed this list away for many years until he posted it on the PDGA Discussion Board in May of 2003. Three of the courses from the July letter had already been removed from this listing and Bill’s guess dated it to 1978. The list is ordered by state and city and then either by park name, business name, or street address.
In July of 1978 DGA published a newsletter detailing 14 new courses, most of which described a signature hole, with the heading 'Add these new courses to your list:' In April 1980 DGA published a newsletter which on page 3 stated "We are working on a Disc Golf Course Book that gives location, lists the pros and other pertinent data on all of our courses. With any luck we should have it finished by June." Page 4 of this newsletter lists only the state and city of 31 new courses. Page 7 of the June 1980 newsletter lists 12 new courses, again with only state and city, and with no mention of the detailed course listing referenced in April (there must be more of these newsletters published between July 1978 and April 1980 and after June 1980, but I have yet to come across them).
On August 24, 1982, DGA sent a Memo to All Sales Reps and Regional Pros "We have finally received our order of Pocket Guides to the Game of Disc Golf. We feel that these are an excellent sales tool and educational aid to be given to people who have little or no knowledge of Disc Golf". This “Pocket Guide” is a simple list of 116 US course locations by State and City and was also included in the Wham-O Frisbee Golf Disc box with a 100-E mold glow disc. Years later, Steve Hartwell #2465 tried to use it to locate additional courses when he was PDGA Disc Golf Course Directory Editor. I have also tried to make this list more detailed as well as the newsletter course listings, but identifying these courses can be difficult, especially given the location of courses outside city limits which often get assigned to the nearest large city and then over time the location gets revised as towns grow in population. 1982 is also the year that Ted Smethers #1159 contacted all the known course pros to organize a professional tour and start gathering whatever course information he could.
By January of 1984, Ted had completed a course directory of 167 entries, garnered from tournament flyers and pro tour dates, and as far as I can tell, was unaware of the newsletters or the 1982 directory. Ted sent out a letter making course pros aware of his directory but, due to his limited postage budget, not many people received a copy. Shortly after this, and 4 years after the newsletter mention, Ed published his own more complete version of this directory, without acknowledging Ted’s contribution, in an announcement for his “all new 1984 line of KITTY HAWK Super Discs” (the 2nd page lists retail prices as of April 12, 1984). In total, 255 US courses and 6 Canadian courses were included. Allen Risley #1752 believes it is likely that this directory was sent to DGA Regional Pros. I am pretty sure that a number of these courses had already been removed, but Ed was unaware of it.
In July of 1984 Allen Risley and Tom Monroe #033 drove from Florida to New York for the 1984 World Championships in Rochester, and, unaware of any directories, played as many courses as they knew about on their route. Talking to others at Worlds they learned of courses that they had driven by, and this inspired Allen to offer his assistance to Ted Smethers in order to get out a comprehensive listing. Ted passed his course material as well as some of Ed Headrick’s short form records of basket sales, to Allen who expanded on it, and in 1985 the PDGA started publishing, using a dot matrix printer, the “Flying Disc Golf Course Directory - Edited by Allen Risley". 209 courses in the United States and six Canadian courses were listed. The initial price was $5.00 and Allen sold many of them face-to-face at the 1985 PDGA Pro Worlds in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Throughout 1985 and into 1986 Allen reprinted some pages with new additions and, if already photocopied, he would "X" out removed courses in pen. Photocopied versions were sold for $3.00 and included between 215 and 235 courses.
In 1986, Steve Hartwell became involved when Allen Risley got married and started grad school and no longer had time to devote to the directory. The 2nd edition of the “P.D.G.A. Course Listing” was published in October of that year with 229 United States, six Canadian, and eight Scandinavian courses. Steve published directories or supplements nearly annually, from 1988 until 2001. After the 1993 directory Steve realized that install date would be an interesting piece of information and added that field to the update forms. These install dates first appeared in the 1994 directory, but in many cases, so much time had gone by that this value was only a best guess. (My first involvement with this project came directly as a result of almost 200 courses that still had this field blank in 2012.)
Steve also worked with Bill Fitler #9987 to publish the very first PDGA Disc Golf Course Directory on the World Wide Web in 1995. Originally a set of static web pages hosted by Netscape (who was Bill's employer at the time) it was moved to a dedicated website at dgc-online.com in 1998. Towards the end of the decade, Bill was unable to put much time into the website and enlisted PDGA.com webmaster Marty Hapner #4033 to take over. Marty consolidated Steve and Bill's work to create a master database with enhanced search capabilities which would lay the foundation for a comprehensive and interactive PDGA Online Disc Golf Course Directory at PDGA.com.
Current PDGA Disc Golf Course Editor Cliff Towne came on board in 2001 and continued to publish print editions annually. But with the ability for the public to submit course updates online and the continuing growth of the sport, it became clear that any printed version of the course directory would be out-of-date well before it hit the shelves. Cliff published the 22nd and final print edition of the PDGA Disc Golf Course Directory in October 2010 which contained more than 3200 courses worldwide.
America's Earliest Disc Golf Courses
The following is a list, by state, and year of basket installation of what we currently believe to be the earliest basket courses. If the target was originally not some kind of basket, then the installation year will not match the year that baskets were installed. Courses that no longer exist have a line struck through them. A list of the earliest five courses per country is available in a separate article. If you have documented evidence of different dates, we strongly encourage you to send us your feedback to help us correct our information. Although we would prefer that you contact us directly with any corrections to this early course information, anyone with an account on PDGA.com can edit the PDGA Disc Golf Course Directory to add new courses or update existing courses.
Don't have a PDGA.com account? Create one for free now and start editing, adding, and updating courses today!
Revised November 27, 2018
|Course #||Course Install||Basket Install||City||Course Name|
|1||1976||1976||Huntsville||Brahan Springs Park|
|4||1983||1983||Florence||Lakeside Disc Golf at Veterans Memorial Park|
|Eight Mile||Chickasabogue County Park|
|1||1999||1999||King Salmon||King Salmon Park|
|Anchorage||Westchester Lagoon Park|
|4||2003||2003||Anchorage||Kincaid Park Disc Golf Course|
|Eagle River||Schroeder Park Disc Golf Course|
|5||2004||2004||Homer||The Moose Pretzel|
|2||1978||1978||Tucson||Santa Cruz River Park|
|4||1981||1981||Fountain Hills||Fountain Hills Park|
|1||1980||1980||North Little Rock||Burns Park - Red|
|2||1980||1984||Fort Smith||Tilles Park|
|2||1984||1984||Hot Springs Village|
|1||1975||1976||Pasadena||Oak Grove (Hahamongna Park)|
|2||1976||1976||La Mirada||La Mirada Regional Park - Lake 18|
|3||1977||1977||Huntington Beach||Huntington Beach Central Park|
|3||1977||1977||San Diego||Morley Field|
|1||1978||1978||Littleton||Ken Caryl Disc Golf Course|
|2||1978||1978||Pueblo||Pueblo City Park|
|4||1990||1990||Fort Collins||Edora Park|
|5||1991||1991||Boulder||Harlow Platts Park|
|4||2002||2002||North Grosvenor Dale||West Thompson Lake|
|5||2004||2004||Manchester||Wickham Park Disc Golf Course|
|1||1978||1978||Lewes||Cape Henlopen State Park|
|2||1980||1980||Wilmington||Brandywine Creek State Park|
|3||1982||1982||Wilmington||Bellevue State Park|
|3||1982||1982||Felton||Killens Pond State Park|
|3||1982||1982||Bear||Lums Pond State Park|
|5||2011||2011||Waimanalo||Bellows Field Beach Disc Golf|
|1||1996||1996||Boise||Ann Morrison Park Southeast|
|3||1998||1998||Pocatello||Bengal Ridge at ISU|
|3||1998||1998||Rupert||Lake Walcott State Park|
|3||1998||1998||Moscow||University of Idaho|
|1||1977||1977||Peru||Honey Bear Hollow Campgrounds|
|4||1980||1980||Fort Wayne||Shoaff Park|
|1||1978||1978||Cedar Falls||Tourist Park|
|2||1979||1979||Fort Dodge||Snell-Crawford Park|
|3||1979||1979||Des Moines (Urbandale)|
|4||1980||1980||Des Moines (Urbandale)|
|2||1983||1983||Wakeeney||Scout Park (Boy Scout Park)|
|5||1985||1985||Kansas City||Rosedale Park (Top)|
|1||1978||1978||Brandenburg||Otter Creek Park|
|3||1981||1981||Independence||Lincoln Ridge/Banklick Woods Park|
|3||1981||1981||Nancy||Pulaski County Park (Bottom)|
|1||1977||1982||Shreveport||Clyde Fant Disc Golf Course (Veterans Park)|
|5||1987||1987||Baton Rouge||Highland Road Park|
|1||1977||1977||North Monmouth||Beaver Brook Disc Golf Course|
|3||1994||1994||Trenton||Hapana Disc Golf|
|4||1995||1995||Brunswick||Enman Field - Beast|
|5||1997||1997||Brunswick||Enman Field - Beauty|
|1||1980||1980||College Park||Calvert Road Park|
|2||1981||1981||Baltimore||Pine Grove Middle School|
|3||1986||1986||Baltimore||Druid Hill Park - Legacy Course|
|4||1990||1990||Gaithersburg||Seneca Creek State Park|
|5||1993||1993||Millersville||Kinder Farm Park|
|4||1981||1981||Royal Oak||Starr-Jaycee Park|
|5||1984||1984||Niles||Madeline Bertrand County Park|
|4||1978||1978||Brainerd||Crow Wing Lake Camp|
|2||1995||1995||Hattiesburg||Paul B. Johnson State Park - Desert Fox|
|3||1996||1996||Tupelo||Tombigbee State Park - 1|
|4||1997||1997||Waveland||Buccaneer State Park|
|4||1997||1997||Jackson||Lefleurs Bluff State Park|
|4||1997||1997||Gautier||Shepard State Park|
|1||1979||1979||St. Louis (Hazelwood)||White Birch Park|
|2||1979||1979||Springfield||Oak Grove Park|
|3||1980||1980||Columbia||Albert Oakland Park, Front Course|
|5||1981||1981||Kansas City||Swope Park|
|1||1997||1997||Great Falls||Warden Park|
|2||1998||1998||Bozeman||Bohart Ranch X-C Ski Center - Lower|
|5||1992?||2000||Glendive||Dawson Community College|
|2||1990||1990||Lincoln||Max E. Roper Interstate Park|
|4||1992||1992||Fremont||Calvin Crest Camp|
|5||1994||1994||Omaha||Seymour Smith Park|
|2||1977||1977||Las Vegas||Sunset Park|
|3||1992||1992||Las Vegas||Freedom Park|
|4||1993||1993||Las Vegas||Peccole Ranch|
|5||1998||1998||Zephyr Cove||Zephyr Cove Park|
|5||1996||1996||Center Ossipee||Terrace Pines Campground|
|3||1974||1982||New Brunswick||Rutgers, Douglass College|
|4||1990||1990||West Milford||Browns Point/Buzzy's Creek|
|2||1990||1990||Rio Rancho||Vista Hills Park|
|3||1992||1992||Santa Fe||Ashbaugh Park|
|4||1995||1995||Red River||Mallette Park|
|5||1996||1996||Cimarron||Philmont Scout Ranch|
|1||1977||1977||Mt. Kisco||Leonard Park|
|3||1980||1980||Lewiston||Joseph Davis State Park|
|5||1982||1982||North Tonawanda||Payne Park|
|3||1984||1984||Raleigh||Cedar Hills Rotary Park|
|3||1984||1984||Durham||Cornwallis Road Park|
|3||1984||1984||Jacksonville||Northeast Creek Park|
|2||1980||1980||Bismarck||Lions Hillside Park|
|4||1981||1981||Dickinson||Optimist Disc Golf Course at Memorial Park|
|4||1981||1981||Mandan||Sunset Park Disc Golf Course|
|1||1978||1978||Medina||Roscoe Ewing Park|
|3||1978||1978||Harrison||Miami Whitewater Forest|
|5||1980||1980||Cincinnati||Woodland Mound Park|
|1||1977||1977||Norman||N.E. Lions Park|
|2||1979||1979||Oklahoma City||Will Rogers Park|
|4||1980||1980||Tulsa (Broken Arrow)||Haikey Creek Park|
|4||1980||1980||Ponca City||War Memorial Park|
|1||1980||1980||Gresham||Rockwood Central Park|
|4||1991||1991||North Bend||Windsor Park|
|1||1977||1977||Titusville||Oil Creek Family Campground|
|2||1977||1978||Philadelphia||Sedgley Woods (East Fairmount Park)|
|3||1978||1978||Newville||Dogwood Acres Campground|
|5||1987||1989||Birdsboro||French Creek State Park|
|5||2014||2014||Wakefield||South Kingstown Disc Golf Course|
|2||1978||1978||North Myrtle Beach|
|1||1977||1977||Rapid City||Omaha Park Disc Golf Course|
|3||1993||1993||Aberdeen||Kuhnert Disc Golf Course|
|4||1995||1995||Spearfish||Black Hills State University|
|5||1996||1996||Vermillion||Prentis Park Disc Golf|
|1||1979||1979||Lebanon (Bairds Mills)||Cedars of Lebanon State Park|
|3||1980||1980||Winchester||Winchester City Park|
|2||1981||1981||Salt Lake City|
|3||1982||1982||Salt Lake City||Creekside Park|
|5||2001||2001||Solitude||Solitude Mountain Resort|
|4||2002||2002||Montgomery||Black Falls Disc Club|
|4||2002||2002||Waterbury Center||Center Chains DGC at Hope A. Davey Park|
|4||2002||2002||Bradford||Oxbow Disc Golf|
|2||1977||1977||Virginia Beach||Bayville Park|
|4||1979||1979||Centreville||Bull Run Regional Park|
|4||1979||1979||Fairfax Station||Burke Lake Park|
|4||1979||1979||Lorton||Pohick Bay Regional Park|
|2||1986||1986||Tacoma||Fort Steilacoom N.W. Disc Golf Course|
|4||1989||1989||Seattle||Lakewood King County Park|
|5||1990||1990||Ravensdale||Lake Retreat Campground|
|2||1994||1994||Paw Paw||The Woodshed|
|5||2000||2000||Paw Paw||Whippin' Post|
|2||1979||1979||Beloit||Dr. George W. Hilliard Park|
|4||1996||1996||Cheyenne||Dry Creek Parkway|
|5||1997||1997||Alta||Grand Targhee Resort|
|5||1997||1997||Evanston||Hamblin City Park|
* Course re-established in park after original layout removed, or course moved to a different area of the park.
Man I am old. There are a bunch of courses that have strikes through that I played at....
I was thinking along the same lines... My favorite course 35 years ago, played with a frisbee, is long gone now, obsolete with new discs. Man, that was a fun course.
This is a REALLY COOL history lesson !!!!!
Really wanna go hunting for baskets........ Jug End in the Berkshires(South Egremont MA) is a huge area of unused forest. Serious potential to find an old Mach I out there i bet.
Does this include Saucer Golf courses or just DGA Pole Hole courses?
It includes Saucer courses and homemade baskets. It does not include tonal or other objects such as wood posts, trees, culverts, lamp posts....
Such interesting information Eric. Thanks to all who labored to create this database stretching way back.
I noticed what looks like an error in the PA listing. If the install dates are correct, then Schenley Park should be sixth on the list, after Akron and Birdsboro.
Roland and French Creek were both object courses until 1991, so as a basket course Schenley precedes them, sorry for the confusion.
Ross Park in Norton Shores Michigan was open in 1977 where it was only nine holes with 4x4 painted posts as the target. It's where I first started in that same year.
Any indication about the Worlds of Fun Course in Kansas City Missouri, some believe that it was in place prior to Swope.
The course was known as 'Par None Folf – Oceans of Fun Theme Park' and we have been unable to verify it's existence prior to 1985.
In June, Tom Ingle (#107) was an part of the first class inducted into the Missouri Hall of Fame. Unable to attend the ceremony, he had me read his remarks that included this: "In 1982 I designed the second basket course, in Kansas City, for Lamar Hunt at his Oceans of Fun waterpark. (About 300 daily rounds were played until they replaced part of the course with a water float-ride.)"
Ross Park did not get baskets until 2012, so comes way down on the list of early basket courses.
Interesting compilation. I hope you intend this to be a living, breathing document as errors are discovered.
In Oregon: Champoeg State Park did not have baskets permanently installed until the early 1990s. Prior to that, it was used by the disc golfing community as an object course (trees) with a dynamic course design.
Westmoreland Park in Eugene used poles with metal bands until the parks department installed baskets in 1991.
I've had several locals as well as fellow disc golfers tell me there was a basket course installed in Ooltewah, TN (just outside of Chattanooga) in 1981 that closed in 1983. One of my neighbors and her husband played the course often while it was open. I also talked to another gentleman once from Alabama who had won the grand opening tournament there. There was apparently a downhill hole that if you overthrew it you would end up in the middle of I-75! My friends went to where the course was a couple years back to see what was left and only found 1 old teepad everything else was grown over. I heard at one point the baskets were sold to another course but not sure which one. Wish I could help more. Please let me know if you find any info about this and if I can help in any way. Thanks
This sounds like the "Country Village" Course. Kathy Swift was listed as the course pro. The address was on Hilltop Drive, but as far as I can tell that area is residential now. It was listed in the 1984 directory. Thanks for the date range.
I would guess half of the old course is commercial and the other half is residential. There's a huge business there now that builds tow trucks but it does connect to a subdivision. It's on Hilltop Dr. The gentleman I talked the most to about it said it was gone by 83-84 but it was there for a few years. Thanks for the info. I'll see if I can help with number of baskets and tracking down the exact year it was installed. I really wish I could have played it!!!
I located one of the original employees of the course in Ooltewah, TN. He said the course was installed in 1979. He said he knows for sure because he bought his first new car that same year, a 1979 Camaro. (Because of the new job) Also said he played the course several times before it was even open to the public. He said the original downhill hole that went towards I75 was moved because of safety. He also said it was a 18 hole course. This is the third person in the last week that told me it was installed before 1980. (All locals) I'm going to keep looking for some kind of concrete evidence. I have a friend that has an overhead picture of that area from 1980. She said there are definitely some kind of trails going all through there but it's hard to see anything else when you zoom in.
Actually if you could find out how many holes/baskets there were, that would be helpful.
I've talked to a couple people who played it and they both said there were 18 baskets. Apparently they were all sold to a course in Atlanta after they shut it down. I'm still trying to find out exactly what year it was installed.
On a side note, I found out that Wills Park in GA wasn't installed until 1987. The first course there was Chastain Park installed in 77 or 78 by Ed Headricks son.
Wills Park on FaceBook says 1983 Install, I sent an email to Alpharetta Recreation asking them to look it up, and the Deputy Director's reply was that they took over from Fulton County in 1996, so they don't know, but were told it was in the late 1980's. 1988 is the first time that it was added to the PDGA Database, so 1987 is quite possible. I don't know when the 1980 date was accepted, but I have not been able to confirm anything before 1988. Can you provide some kind of proof of install date?
Chastain Park is unlikely in 1977, since it should have shown up in one of the two early lists. 1978 would make more sense if it was that early, and it is quite possible that it is, but I would need to see proof to change it prior to the 1983 date that we know it existed. Please provide this proof if possible.
This is really cool! I just wanted to help improve some information about New York. The Rochester Flying Disc Open is in its 43rd year this year, which means there must have been courses that predate all of the courses you have listed by a few years. I'm not sure what courses were used, but I'm sure you could ask Jim Palmeri (PDGA #23) or Royce Racinowski (PDGA #2089). Ellison Park was first used in 1975 (see http://grdgc.org/courses/ellison-park). In addition, Genesee Valley Park was installed in 1980. Keep up the good work!
The RFDO courses would have been temporary, this listing is for permanent courses. Thanks for the link to Genessee in 1980. I will need to re-order the list.
Nice stuff Eric. As to Missouri, I have heard anecdotal evidence (a KC golfer says he played the course then as a teenager) that Oak Grove Park in Springfield may have been installed as early as 1978, even though Hazelwood has always touted itself as "Missouri's First Disc Golf Course."
Wow, nice to see the info about Gilson Park in Wilmette, Illinois as that was the first real course that I ever played at and that was in 1977 when it was brand new. I joined the PDGA that same year and continue playing today.
I remember playing my first rounds at Long Run Park, outside Louisville, Ky, probably in 1981. The "baskets" we're tree stumps with the centers routed out and a pole down the middle, I want to say there was nylon webbing instead of chains. I had one disc, a black 185 Masterclass by Whammo. Good memories, hard to believe that was 35 summers ago
Would be happy to help anytime
You are the second person to give us feedback on 1981, however it was an object (post) course until at least 1985, so is not listed among the oldest basket courses above.
You should absolutely pursue this, shouldn't take more than a few hundred hours. I look forward to your more accurate list. Let me know if you want me to supply you with a starter list of object courses, and if you would like me to act as liaison for the PDGA to publish it once you are finished. Happy hunting!
At some in the 90's Sedgley was thought as 2nd oldest but I realize now nobody knows for sure. I've been playing 30 years total and 27 in and around PA but never heard of:
1 1976 Newville Dogwood Acres Campground
2 1977 Titusville Oil Creek Family Campground
Have these two been verified recently?
Sedgley's history can be read here:
These 2 courses were not listed in the course directories for many years and also had homemade targets, so they are not Headrick courses. I read the Sedgley history, which is similar to the Wikipedia page on Sedgley. I sent the club a note 18 months ago to let them know that Sedgley was not close to the first dozen worldwide, but they apparently ignored it. In terms of Headrick/DGA courses it could have been as early as about #35, and if it had been installed as soon as Headrick offered baskets it might have been #2 on the east coast. However, as it took awhile, it may have just barely made it into the first dozen on the east coast, they could probably accurately claim it was one of the first 50 worldwide.
I was interested in the Athens GA course listed above as I had never heard anyone mention it in my years here. Digging around in the archive of the Red and Black (UGA's student newspaper) it appears the course was established earlier than what's listed above. The course was in place by May 1978 and ads were still appearing for it in 1980. So I believe the Athens course may have been the first in Georiga, not Willis Park (FWIW, the ads claim it as the first). Here are some of the ads/articles that appeared about it:
Thanks so much for digging into this! Yours is precisely the type of response I had hoped to get more of by publishing my articles. I changed the Athens and Alpharetta dates in this article, made note of the articles and the 1978 date in my database, and have reached out to the brother of one of the people mentioned in the 2nd article.FYI, per the comment thread above, Chastain Park has been claimed to have had a polehole course in 1977 or 1978, but I have no proof; Wikipedia claims that there was an object disc golf course in Augusta's Pendleton King Park by 1964.
Great list, thanks!
I suspect that there was never a course at Tilden Park in Berkeley. Victor Malafronte was interviewed on local TV around 1979-1980 (based on his comment that roughly 74 courses existed in the country at that time) -- saying that there were no courses in Northern California yet. Many years later, Victor couldn't recall what happened to the course that DGA/Wham-O donated, perhaps he gave them to the East Bay Regional Park District that he mentioned in the interview? (EBRPD staff is not aware of this, but I didn't dig too much into their history.) My guess is that these baskets were installed at Aquatic Park in Berkeley -- which opened in 1982, I believe.
Tilden was included due to it's inclusion on Ed Headrick's ~Dec1977 list. It is possible that it was never installed, it is also possible that it was removed after a short period of time. Aquatic Park's currently accepted install is 1980.
Thanks Eric, didn't know the Tilden listing originated with Ed. Wow, it's interesting and challenging trying to document our history, even though we're still relatively young. I'm gonna follow up on the Aquatic Park date, as I've thought for some time that it was installed in 1982. I need to go to the first-person authorities. :)
First of all it really bothers me that you call Ed the father of disc golf, not even remotely true. We were playing golf at Berkeley in the 60's and demanding a better made disc for distance. Vic and Roger Barrett submitted mechanical drawings of a disc that would be far superior to the pro. Ed's response was to tell us that we were freaks and that it would never be a sport. Then he says look what we are producing , a disc had melted on a radiator and thus the fastback was born, we were horrified. Does this sound like the inventor of anything? I am sure if you would do a little research you would find that Ed copied someone else design for the pole hole and when he realized he could make some coin boom he was gone from Whamo selling pole holes at 300 a shot. eventually they produced that mechanical drawing and it was the 119.
Your rant has very little to do with my article.
I have a mimeographed map, circa 1977 or 78, that depicts the "Mt. Hermon Folf Course" on the campus of Northfield Mount Hermon School in Gill Massachusetts. Par 80. https://www.facebook.com/groups/113846025012/permalink/10159770543675013/
This is such a terrific project, Eric. Thank you so much for digging into the history of early basket courses from 40 years ago. Some newer members may not know that a bunch of Saucer Golf, so-called "Cone" courses, were installed from 1978 to 1981. Some are still being played such as the popular one at Moir Park in Bloomington, MN. Here's a clip from a tournament there a few years ago. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KP0e6EuTYWQ
I spoke to Jim Challas last night, and did some additional research. As far as I know there are 3 cone courses still in existence in the US, all in Minnesota, and 3 cone courses in Alberta, Canada. At one time there were cone courses in 12 states. I am preparing a list, with my current information for Jim, and once I get confirmation from him, I will be modifying the 1st 5 for at least 3 states.
Much has changed at Bayville Park in Va. Beach since it opened in 77. I would ride my bike to the course on Saturday and not see a person all day. Today, the course is full on Tuesdays. Says a lot for the sport. Love to see the history being relived through these articles. RADL helped show the way back in the day
I believe you left beautiful Northside Park off the Florida list by mistake. Northside was created in 1982 and is the oldest (still) standing course in Florida.
Northside did not install (Tom Monroe's personal) baskets there until 1985, I currently don't know why the PDGA lists a 1982 date, it is on my radar to probably change to 1985. My guess is that there might have been an object course there as early as 1982. The problem with many object courses is, did they ever really exist, and are they ever really removed? If you have proof of a 1982 course, or anything prior to 1985, I am most eager to see it.
Thanks again, Eric, for your hard work on this project! I'm glad to have played my part in bringing along the cataloging of disc golf courses.
And Northside in Gainesville was definitely installed in 1985. Tom moved to Florida from Alabama in 1984 and I don't think there was a course there before his arrival.
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