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Eagles Wings Disc Golf Returns from Costa Rica


Last year, Eagles Wings Disc Golf took disc golf to Zambia, and now they've recently returned from their second international venture in Costa Rica, where a team of nine traveled to the nation's capital, San José, to install a disc golf course and teach the sport. While Costa Rica has at least two courses already, there is nothing within the city of San José itself, where a majority of the population lives.

For this venture, Eagles Wings Disc Golf teamed up with Push The Rock Costa Rica and Students International to complete the project. It took a lot of coordination and generosity, but by the end of the week, a 9-hole course was installed, and approximately 600 people participated in a clinic and/or a disc golf event during the week!

The team visited three schools and a prison to teach the sport of disc golf, where Push The Rock Costa Rica and Students International already work on a regular basis. Clinics were run in both the morning and afternoon, while half the team worked on the course throughout the week. At each and every location attended, the team was warned by local staff, teachers, and administrators to be ready for complaints, as the kids have never enjoyed playing anything other than soccer.

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Left to right, back row: Dan Lackner, Dustin Leatherman, Dave Wert, Kyle Fadigan.
Left to right, middle row: Chad Benavidez, Derek Cassel, Hannah Croke, Alana Fadigan.
Front row: Hannah Leatherman.

Thankfully, when it was all said and done those same people that were warning of complaints were excitedly talking about how amazed they were that they didn't hear any! And just when things didn't seem like they could get any better, an astonishing 165 people showed up to the course-opening event for a great day of disc golf! 

An unexpected highlight of the trip came from the experience the team had while teaching disc golf in one of the largest prisons in Costa Rica. More specifically, teaching the sport to two groups of 15 young men each, all of which were between the ages of 16-18 years old. The boys are given very limited time during the week to do any physical activity, so again the team was warned that they would be upset to not be playing soccer. Although it took the team a few minutes to persuade the young men into giving it a try, they were soon throwing and competing against one another with the same enthusiasm and passion that so many of us have for the sport!

 

 

A quick interview from the Eagles Wings point person in Costa Rica, Kyle Fast of Students International, who helped install the course!

The course was built in Villa Olimpica Park located in Los Desamparados. The team was given a great piece of property to work with and the course consists of nine baskets with two tee pads per hole, with tee signs for each hole included. The course was designed primarily for beginners but still offers a few challenges for the more experienced players. The staff in Costa Rica hopes that its popularity will grow, thus giving them ammo to convince the park to expand the course. For now, the local government and park management are on board to invest in the course, and we are all very excited to see what happens with it in the future.

Students International and Push The Rock Costa Rica plan to continue to work on the course over the next several weeks to ensure that it is fully open to the public in the very near future. Before heading back home, the team discussed plans for disc golf clubs in the local schools that could potentially compete against each other and there's already talk of installing a second course as well. Like so many other countries where disc golf is still very new, there is a ton of excitement about the sport, and we really look forward to watching disc golf expand.

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Eagles Wings Disc Golf would like to extend a special thank you to the Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) for helping provide financial support for Students International through the Marco Polo Program, which provides financial support for the introduction and development of disc golf into new countries around the world. Thank you as well to Innova Champion Discs for donating travelers, discs and minis and to Dynamic Discs for their donation of 50 discs to the cause. 

For more information, follow Eagles Wings Disc Golf on Facebook and visit their website: www.eagleswingsdiscgolf.org.

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