The Community of Disc Golfers and About All Things Disc Golf
I thought that was Houck in your photo for a second... ;-D
Until a bunch more people, including our own players want to watch and even pay as spectators, there's little to sell potential sponsors even if you had a dozen fulltime people trying to raise sponsorship. Getting more courses in the ground so more players are familiar with and can enjoy the sport is how it worked in other sports to build a spectator base. Even then, look how many kids now play soccer due to grassroots efforts over a 10-15 year period. And yet, it's not exactly become much of a spectators sport in the U.S.
I agree that the sport of disc golf has to become more visible nationally but it has made great strides recently with the afformentioned things. I do beleive that in the future disc golf will be on mainstream tv like espn and such. It is simply so awesome to watch these discs fly especially with a pro at the helm. Afterall we all loved it the second we saw it, and heck I was 40 before I ever even saw a disc or basket and I grew up in one of the birthplaces of disc golf . Huntsville, Alabama. Actually I cut my teeth on Brahan Springs course circa 1976. I do several unusual tournys a year like even a 21 tourny trying to generate more excitement and exposure. We are in process of installing 3 new courses which will bring our total here to 7. I even put in my own course recently.One thing I am doing this summer is installing a mini-disc golf course here adjacent to our new big course in the state park. I think putting in more of these in city parks would be very beneficial to the future of disc golf. Due to young kids 5 to 10 or so can easily handle the minis and can get the rush of a birdie and ace whereas they have to wait until they are much older to be able to chunk a large disc to the polehole. Please look into the possibilities of installing a mini course near you . It is relatively cheap and requires only a small amount of property. It will be hard to build a good spectator base until we make the sport more visible on tv so people can get pumped after they watch a disc bend and turn and fly 500 feet through trees and such. It is truly a shame that the common sports fan in this country doesn't know who Ken Climo is! He is truly an American legend and should be a regular on the tonite show,etc.., Let's work, work ,work and the future looks bright. Maybe we as a national group of golfers can start a fundraising campaign to purchase a mainstream t.v. ad .Hmmmmm
Humm, I just don't see it, most of the "non-DG" folks I know, wouldn't consider throwing plastic at a basket a SPORT, sorry, heck I can't get any of my 50+ friends interested but they will sit infront of a boob-tube and be critical of Tiger Woods playing but never get out to a Ball Golf course but once in a great while. I think the problem is the PDGA and it's major sponsors need to "Step away" from having anything to do with the "AM" side of DG before anyone can take DG as a "Professional Level Sport". You don't see a bunch of AM ball golfer's out on the course the same time or even the same day as the PRO Ball Golfer's do you?? The PDGA is still just too afraid to step away from the "MONEY" that the AM side of the equation put's into PRO DG at the moment. JMHO.
Now IF, the PDGA "CAN'T" find a way to pay their PRO players, thru Major Sponsorships and seems totally unwilling to work their way up with more "large Mom & Pop Sponsorships", then MAYBE we need to look at "DISOLVING" the idea of a "PROFESSIONAL DISC GOLF ASSN". WHY NOT just make the recreational activity/sport of DG a "AM ONLY" SPORT??? Would it be so horrible if NO ONE made a living at Disc Golf, I for one don't think so, would it be a total failure if Disc Golf stayed a sport/activity that OPEN TO ALL?? I mean, you all are talking about "Green Fees, Groomed Courses", Clubhouses, Specific Clothes to wear, etc. You really want DG to turn into the SNOBBY, Must have Money to play, clickish sport that is BALL GOLF, WHY?????
The PDGA can't have both worlds and make them work 100%, it's either Step Up 100% to be professional level or let's bail on the "We have to make MONEY TO PLAY" and work HARD to keep DG a activity/sport that can be enjoyed by the "Masses" and play for the LOVE of the GAME, I know that's such a "horrible" ideal for all of you that seem to "Have to make your bucks" on DG but your really going to screw it up in the end, if OUR only GOAL for DG is "The Pursuit of MONEY", again, jmho. I live on a fixed income, I can't afford "green fees, country club dues, fancy clothes, etc. so I'll be looking for another "activity" if DG get's to the "Ball Golf" level for membership. Maybe it's time to admit, the PDGA is just a pipe dream and needs to be forgotten and reworked into the ADGA or the USDGA. IF you don't play for fun and love of the game, then face the fact, YOUR only in it for the MONEY!
More and more college students are creating DG clubs at their university. They could start competing against each other.