Discovering Disc Golf

Discovering  Disc Golf

You see them around parks… strange looking chain baskets that are perched on a pole. A little metal tree of weirdness standing alone. What are they?

They are frisbee golf hole baskets, and I wanted to try it. How hard could it be to throw a bunch of Frisbees into a basket?

I had it all planned out. I invited four of my friends for a frisbee golf afternoon. But, trying to schedule a free afternoon with four moms is like scheduling a U.N. meeting. Strike One.

My next attempt was trying to talk my husband into a family outing of Frisbee-ing, fun and frivolity. He didn’t fall for the fun and frivolity part so I took his guttural groan as a no. Strike Two.

I did not want to strike out on this so, like any good friend would, I forced my best buddy to round up her kids and join my kids and me on a blazing hot Sunday morning for a few holes. Nothing could go wrong with that.

The Lehigh Valley has a nice handful of Frisbee golf courses including South Mountain, Jordan Park and Bear Creek, but for this little excursion, I picked the Lehigh Valley Parkway. And before I infuriate the avid Frisbee golfers anymore, let me switch to what they like it to be called. Disc Golf. And I was going into disc golf blind.

When we arrived, Leslie was sitting there with what I thought was a cooler of snacks. “Oh how sweet is that?” I thought. Nope. That cooler-looking thing was the disc golf case with all of the discs nicely tucked away in their own little sleeve. She had borrowed them; I love a good prepared friend. I had a few freebie Frisbees thrown in the back of my car that we got from a health fair. Whew. I wouldn’t have to use them.

Upon further inspection, we realized each disc has its own category. Some were drivers, some were for the fairway, some were putters, etc. Each disc is a different size and weight depending on what you want it to do. These weren’t your mama’s Frisbees, that’s for sure.

We moseyed over to the first tee and stood in awe as we watched a group of guys who had obviously done this before. They had just the perfect disc picked from their inventory of 40, and when they shot, they held the disc in a vertical way, performed a waltz-like delivery step and hurled their disc to… oh… I don’t know… MARS.

And that was the first indication my group was in trouble. Gulp. We consisted of two moms who were disc golf challenged, two boys who brought along a football for some reason, two little girls who did not want to be there – in the least – and six discs between us all.

OK – realistically, I knew the six of us were not going to do 18 holes so I asked one of the guys if it would be a disc-golf-sin, if we started on “that empty hole over there” and see how we did. I braced for a gasp and a speech on course etiquette, but he said, “Oh yeah, that’s cool.” And then he even went on to explain a few techniques, gave a few pointers, and wished us luck. I liked the disc golfers already. They are a laid back crowd.

Child One: “I have to do what?”

“You have to pick a Frisbee out of this bag and throw it until you get it in that metal basket.”


“Because it is fun.”

“I don’t think it is fun”

“Well, just try it. Take this white one. It is for distance.”

“But I don’t like that color.”

“But it is for throwing a long way.”

“I like red. I only want to use the red ones”

“OK. Use the red ones then. Count your throws. That’s how we keep score. Good luck. GET OUT OF THAT TREE, it is your turn. Get over here.”

Child Two: “Can I throw the football to the hole?”



“Because it is called disc golf. Not football golf. Throw the Frisbee.”

“Maybe I’ll invent football golf.”

“Ok, that would be awesome, but in the meantime, throw a Frisbee. Good luck. GET OUT OF THE BUSHES, YOU ARE GOING TO GET POISON IVY and get over here. It is your turn.”

Child Three: “I don’t want to throw a Frisbee. I want to
pick flowers.”

“Just try it.”

“Do you want to see me do a cartwheel?”

“No, I want you to throw a Frisbee to that metal basket.”

“When I get there, can I do a cartwheel?”


“How about I throw a Frisbee and THEN cartwheel to the Frisbee and THEN throw it and do another cartwheel?”


“How about I…”


Child Four: “I don’t want to do this. It is too hot.”

“I know, but you might be awesome at it. Maybe I’ll be awesome at it… what do you think?”

“I think you will stink.”

“Yeah – I probably will.”

… and I did. We as a group made it through five holes, it was hotter than the surface of the sun, no one scored less than 10 over par, and I even managed to hit my son smack in the mouth with a disc throw that went awry. That’s when we called it a day.

…when they shot, they held the disc in a vertical way, performed a waltz-like delivery step and hurled their disc to… oh… I don’t know… MARS.

BUT, I have to say it is addicting. After a few holes, you start to get the hang of it a bit, the disc golfers we ran across were more than helpful and patient, and most courses are free! I’d love to try it again… minus Child One, Child Two, Child Three, and Child Four.

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