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PDGA Diversity Grant Reaches Qualla Boundary

A student at Cherokee Middle School in North Carolina putts during P.E. class. Photo: Cherokee One Feather

Disc golf is growing in the Qualla Boundary in western North Carolina.

Recently, students at Cherokee Middle School received instructional videos, new baskets and over 75 discs as a part of a PDGA Diversity and Outreach Grant Program, bringing disc golf into the community for the first time.

“We’re learning, but the kids really, really seem to like it, and it will be another thing we can add to the P.E. program to get these kids active,” Cherokee Middle School P.E. teacher Miranda Stamper told the Cherokee One Feather. “And it’s something they can do for the rest of their lives, something to keep them active that they can do with their families.”

The students and their families will have a head start on a new course coming to the land trust for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI). The Fire Mountain Disc Golf Sanctuary in Cherokee, North Carolina is set to open in the coming months and will feature two layouts.

“It’s another step in our endeavor to make Cherokee an outdoor destination,” EBCI Secretary of Operations Jeremy Hyatt told the One Feather. “We think it will provide yet another opportunity to improve out outdoor offerings and amenities for the general public and tribal families.”

PDGA Board of Directors member, Leah Tsinajinnie, sits on the PDGA Diversity and Outreach Task Force. "I'm thrilled to see that the EBCI community will have a disc golf course!" said Tsinajinnie. "It's essential for the health and wellness of the community members to have options for outdoor activities such as disc golf. I'm particularly excited for the Cherokee youth to have a disc golf course right next to the middle school."

The PDGA Diversity and Outreach Task Force was launched earlier in 2021 and the group’s first major initiative was the D&O Grant Program, which has aided projects during the PDGA Women’s Global Event as well as assisting in bringing disc golf to Hyde Park in Chicago.

PDGA Diversity and Outreach Grant Program Overview and Application »

The grant program aims to encourage members to design and implement ways to move the PDGA membership, and the sport of disc golf, toward greater diversity.

Grant awards, ranging from $500 to $3,000, will provide financial assistance for innovative projects, programs, workshops and activities that strengthen excellence in diversity and outreach for underrepresented populations within the PDGA membership.


Middle schools are a great place to generate first interest in disc golf. Thanks to the PDGA Diversity and Outreach Task Force. And congratulations to Cherokee MS, EBCI, and residents of the Qualla Boundary.

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