Amidst the hustle and bustle of the Azalea festival, the Southern Oregon Disc Golf Association (SODGA) put on a clinic and tournament Saturday at Azalea Park to teach the community the basics of the thriving sport.
Attendees ranged from families looking for a new activity to senior citizens looking for a way to get some casual exercise.
They learned the basics of disc golf, including how to drive, throw mid range and putt. More than a dozen people showed up and the clinic culminated in an impromptu competition for attendees to get some practice in for the tournament.
“We want to put on more of these clinics so that people have a chance to learn about the sport and the community can grow,” said Matthew Tobin, one of the SODGA instructors attending the clinic.
The tournament started shortly after the clinic and had experienced players team up with newer players in doubles teams. The tournament included six holes of “worst shot” throws, with opposing teams picking the worst shot followed by six holes alternating throws between both team members.
“This wasn’t intended to be any kind of fundraiser for the (SODGA), we were just invited by the Chamber of Commerce last minute and decided to put on something fun to get people exposure to disc golf and get us some experience putting on tournaments like this,” said Michael Pitts-Campbell, secretary treasurer of the SODGA.
Campbell said the the SODGA plans to hold another tournament at McVay Rock during the Vet celebration later this summer. He says they’ve been trying to grow the disc golf community in the area over the last three years with different tournaments and clinics to get a bigger turnout at their events and tournaments.
“We hope we can expand to hold a serious weekend-long tournament someday where we combine the groups in Brookings, Crescent City and even Gold Beach,” said
Curry County has several disc golf facilities installed in local parks, including McVay Rock State Recreation Area, Azalea Park and Buffington park. Salmon Run once had a disc golf course that is now defunct.
“People still talk about the Salmon Run course and how amazing it was to play. People around here would love to see it again,” Pitts-Campbell said. “It was challenging, long and wonderful. A lot of other commercial golf courses have put in disc golf facilities and it seems like ball golf is going down, while disc golf if going up.”
Pitts-Campbell said there is currently a proposal in the works to have the city restore the Salmon Run disc golf facilities. According to Val Early of Early Management Team, the disc golf course fell into such disrepair that it was difficult to find any of the holes and it eventually had to be removed, but course management is open to the idea of reinstalling it one day.