Bringing Disc Golf to Ireland

My first introduction to Disc Golf was over the phone with my brother just under 20 years  ago.

“Disc Golf.”

“What?”

“Disc. Golf.” he repeated slowly.

“What do you mean by discs.” Confusion.

“Discs, like Frisbees.” he was getting slightly irritated.

“Oh, Frisbee Golf” Clarity?

“Yes but they call it Disc Golf” it had been a short conversation and he was already sounding tired.

“What sort of clubs do you use?” I asked.

“You don’t use clubs just different types of discs, drivers and putters.” He explained

“And no ball” I asked hopefully

“No, Ben, no ball, you have to get the discs into the holes but the holes are called baskets.” the tiredness in his voice was there again.

So the long and the short of it is that you throw these discs (e.g. Drivers, Mid-Range and Putters)

disctypes

Into these Holes or Baskets.

dicgolfbasket

A few months later I was standing in a beautiful and forested park in Portland, Oregon holding a bunch of discs. It was a cold 8 o’clock in the morning. My first couple of attempts at understanding the flight of the drivers was suspect. But after only a few holes I began to get the gist. After nine holes I was eager to do more.

disctypesreal

18 holes later I noticed that I had cut my thenar space (the webbed skin between your thumb and index finger) but I didn’t want to stop playing so my brother suggested I try underarm. After a few disastrous flights, flurries of leaves, broken branches, and multiple shouts of ‘fore’ I began to get the hang of the underarm style.

If you enjoy throwing a Frisbee but never liked catching them and enjoy walks in a forest then you will soon get the hang of disc golf.

But there is a catch. No courses exist in Ireland. So my brother made an attempt to bring the game to Ireland. On a holiday in 2006 he got as far as having meetings with the Dublin Parks Superintendent, Dublin County Council, Limerick Parks and County Council, Coillte, Private landowners in Counties Dublin, Wicklow and Limerick, members of the Irish Sports Council and finally the then Minister of Sport at the time Martin Cullen.

Each time he sparked a great deal of interest and potential sites were discussed but in the end nobody was prepared to back the idea financially.  Eventually, partly due to frustration at the bureaucracy he was encountering and the fact that he lived in Portland, Oregon, he threw in the towel and gave up on his dream.

But now there is a new champion of the game in Ireland. My brother has been in contact with him and they have made more progress.

There is a very real chance that we shall soon see the first Irish Disc Golf Course.

If you are interested in finding out more about the route to Disc Golf in Ireland you can follow their Facebook page here…   Disc Golf Ireland

UPDATE:

As of April 2014 Disc Golf Ireland have received a grant from the Professional Disc Golf Association. This funding will be put towards Ireland’s first disc golf course. They have also found an ideal location for Ireland’s first course.

But they need more funding so if you have a few euro to spare please donate here.

Advertisements

11 responses to “Bringing Disc Golf to Ireland

  1. Is there a Crazy Golf version of this? 🙂

  2. ben, exactly how popular is this? it seems like something a bunch of stoners would do 🙂 and why don’t they call it frisbee golf, which is far more self-explanatory

  3. there already is Extreme Frisbee only it’s called Ultimate Frisbee.

  4. Is david planning on bringing Qudditch to Ireland also? 🙂

  5. Niall, for the past 20 years it has been the fastest growing sport in the world. There are many people making a living on the professional tour. Ireland is the only northern european country without a course which we are working to change. Ben has a basket and a bunch of discs and I’m sure he would be happy to show you the game if you’re not too busy on your broomstick.

  6. We’re just embarking on a similar project in Manchester, England. Really amused by the similarities in trying to explain what we’re building to people… you’d think the name gives it away (golf, with discs)..

    Seems crazy a sport so big in the US is unheard of in Ireland and the UK – especially as the barriers to entry are so low and it’s family friendly!

    Best of luck with your course – for any UK readers our campaign is here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/manchester-disc-golf-course http://www.manchesterdiscgolf.co.uk/

  7. Played regularly, with varying degrees of both success and inebriation, when I lived in Queenstown NZ. It’s a terrific idea and a great way to spend a couple of hours. The course in Queenstown is a great example of one integrated into an existing park. Just rented discs in town and wandered over – think it was €3 euro for the day or something. Best of luck!

    • Thanks John , I must update this blog as the first Disc Golf course in Ireland opened last weekend! It is a great game I agree. my arm ached slightly for a few days afterwards, it has been a while since i played.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s