The Community of Disc Golfers and About All Things Disc Golf
Most of the places I see that carry disc golf supplies do other things. Most are party stores. I dont think making a business with nothing but disc golf would do really well... probably get some business but probably not enough to live on. Unless you were able to compete with the big competitors online as well. You'd also want your location on a common route to a busy disc golf course. Just some thoughts.
My friend sets up at the course almost every day. During the warmer months he brings his food cart along and sells bratwurst, hotdogs, chicken sandwiches, cookies, chips and drinks. He sells discs including custom dyes. He will also do T-shirts. I don't think that he is getting rich off of it but I think that he does OK. Also, he pretty much has to be there every day from 11 till 6 unless the weather is bad (obviously he leaves earlier in the winter months).
As Craig said most that I know do other things also, however I do know one guy who does just disc golf related merch. He sale alot online and does a lot of tournaments. As far as those with dg stores I know of one who started one up recently but carries other sports item also, and another who is a bike/disc store.
I think that it would be easier and cheaper to run the business out of your home without having to pay for actual retail space. Then there is also the option of selling discs through Ebay or through a website. You would also have to know your local market. I actually bought most of my recent discs online because I wanted certain discs that my friend just didn't have in stock. That holds much more in general now, that "brick and mortar" stores are becoming less relevant in the age of internet sales. If I don't have to get into the car and drive somewhere to buy something I will probably not do that. The cost of putting gas in the car and car maintenance kind of negates any savings for buying something online and getting it shipped directly to you. Also, make sure that if you sell discs from your car on the street near the disc golf course that you know the local laws regarding permits and ordinances.
It would depend on what market you are in and how many courses / other DG specific stores are in the area. If there are a few popular courses and you can get involved with the local clubs and support the courses, I would there would be enough market potential there to start a shop. The closer to a popular course, the better.
Excellent point about local licence/ permits/ordinance.Most p&r depts frown on selling without any type of licence per county laws.Another point is without said p & l,any local buisness,independent will frown on you selling since they had to jump/spend $ for such P & L.Check with local dg clubs if they have a rider clause you can combine coverage?just another 2 cents.Best of luck.
"Trunk" sale of used discs might not draw too much notice,unless you piss someone off.That would be a one day project,not an established a buisness.Still the chance of running foul without said P & L.
Glide in Madison, WI is a great shop. They were a 10 x 20 room and now they have a bit bigger space with many more discs. They've expanded, so the market must be big enough. You could probably get in touch with them. I think one thing they have going for them is they are directly across the street from the 1st tee pad at one of the local courses and there are 2 other courses in town. Location in a good scene would probably be a big enough market, so you should make judgements based on that.
sales at the course sounds more likely to make money,set up a table and canopy,do waters,sodas,and snacks,,get a bulk of used disc,and couple dozen new,and come spring make it happen.