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Disc golf coming soon

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Course in Forsyth Park should be ready by the end of August

There is a new opportunity for outdoor recreation coming to town very soon. If all goes according to plan, you should be playing disc golf in Forsyth Park on the new Forsyth Park Disc Golf Course layout by the end of August.

Trustee Bob Gruenewald has been the village’s point person on this new venture. In April, Gruenewald made a motion to approve $9,000 to purchase baskets, which disc golfers use instead of trying to hit a golf ball in a hole. The motion was approved by trustees.

Disc golf facts

  • Ed Headrick, Frisbee proponent, is father of Disc Golf
  • Disc Golf began in late ’60s on the West Coast
  • Disc Golf Association, founded in 1976

Source: Disc Golf Association

According to the Disc Golf Association website, the sport is “one of the fastest growing games,” with more than 3,000 formal courses in the United States and around the world.

Planning for the course involved meeting with a designer from Rantoul, determining the layout area in the park and doing some research on the popularity of the sport. In the end, Wilbur Wallis, owner of Illinois Disc Golf in Rantoul, was hired to design an 18-hole disc golf course in Forsyth Park for a fee of $1,500.

Public Works Director Larry Coloni told trustees that there would be only minor work to remove a few trees and that ongoing maintenance would be minimal, all things predicted by the DGA.

According to Chris Wentworth, an experienced disc golfer, who visited a board meeting last year, Illinois has the third highest number of disc golf courses nationwide. Wentworth said there is rapid growth in the sport and large-scale tournaments can attract hundreds of overnight guests. He added that the sport makes good use of land not in full use by parks.

Disc golf is played not with golf clubs and a ball, but with a Frisbee-like disc. The goal is to get the disc into a basket that sits a few feet off the ground in the fewest number of tosses.

The routing of the course will begin and end in the area behind ball diamond No. 4. It will take players to the south before turning north and then west as it loops its way around the area near the pond and the Veterans Pavilion before heading toward the east and turning south again to finish right back where players started behind the parking lot for diamonds 4 and 5.

On July 6, Village Administrator David Strohl presented trustees with four bids for installing 19 concrete tee pads for the new course. He recommended the quote by A & C Concrete Specialist of Decatur for a total of $12,400. Each pad will be 12 feet by 6 feet and 4 inches thick; trustees approved A & C Concrete to do the work.

Next up, Gruenewald said, will be getting signage for the course.

This is a sport for all ages and can be played year around. The DGA calls disc golf environmentally friendly while providing quality recreational opportunities and attracting “new users to the park system.”

More details about playing disc golf will be coming in the weeks ahead. 

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