Today’s course collecting materialized a little slower than I think Cristina, Mike and I had hoped! Plus if I own up to things? I really did NOT play well today. 🙁 I made a few great shots, here and there! But shots I can normally count on to have “eyes” when flying through the trees were hitting just about every tree in my path. Though as Steady Ed would always say? “The player that has the most fun wins.” And even though my scores on the card were underwhelming, I was having a LOT of fun with a couple of friends who I don’t nearly get to play with often enough.
Our morning started at the VERY short 1,094-foot, nine-hole Civic Center Park in Auburn Hills, Michigan. No warming up! We were on a mission to play that one quickly…trying to get Mike an ace (so that he could say that Michigan became the eighth US State where he has thrown at least one ace). But as we all took our turns running chains? There were no aces to be had on our card. And worse? Mike actually started broadcasting our round on Facebook Live, and I promptly chunked about a 12-13 foot putt for the world to see (sigh). So the world can see how HARD that missed putt sucked! 😀 But I got all my twos except for Holes 1 and 3, for a final score of 20. But with a lot of Par 2s? I only managed a -2, and an estimated round rating of 863. [sarcasm] Maybe DGA will decide that they need a course collector with more reliable putting skills in 2022 after watching that horrible, horrible chunked putt? [/sarcasm]
Our next stop on the morning was at Bay Court Park in Clarkson, Michigan. It was a beautiful nine-hole course, with a lot of chances to air things out on the tee. And I must say that Mike played this course EXTREMELY well! Meanwhile, I continued to have the “yips” in my putting game, chunking at least two putts that I should have had no business missing. I limped back to the car with an underwhelming -8 (26) and an estimated round rating of 915. But I should have been at LEAST a -10, and felt embarrassed in front of Mike and Cristina for missing very makeable putts.
After Bay Court Park, we headed out to a course that will be opening soon (not officially a course yet) to throw 5-6 holes of what will be a fun, challenging eighteen-hole course in the area! We couldn’t count it as a new course played, however, as we barely threw one-third of the holes (and had no idea where most of the tee pads would be installed). But it was fun to get a preview of a course that should be open for play in Spring 2022. And after that experience, we continued on to Holly Woods DGC in Holly, Michigan. My 200th new disc golf course played in 2021. Hooray!
The more I played Holly Woods, the more I fell in love with the course. I’m not yet sure if I can rate it in my “favorites” in either DGCourseReview.com or on UDisc! But it is close. Very close. Particularly after seeing Holes A-F, which were amazing!
Mike and I also saw a first at Holly Woods! A tee pad on Hole 8 that allows players to throw in two different directions, at two different fairways and baskets. Players who are tired (or racing with the sun) can head off in one direction to play two more holes and call it a nine-hole round! While other players who want to experience the full 18-24 holes can head in another direction. Pretty creative and unique! We played the full 24, and I managed a -2 (77) on the 7,289-foot course. For an estimated round rating of 959.
So there you have it! 200 new disc golf courses played in 2021. I NEVER thought I would get there this year, and told DGA that my realistic goal by December 31 would be 1,850 courses played. So sitting at 1,885 courses played, with several weeks yet to go? Makes me proud of my effort this year. Particularly the past 4-5 months, after getting over COVID-19.
Magic Number = 115 (1,885 Courses Played)
How it All Got Started: Tonn’s Travels >>
A main purpose of this blog will be to share information, helpful tips and tricks (everything from health and fitness to methods for saving money while you’re out “bagging courses” of your own), and ideas for better, safer course design. But I am also hoping to inspire others with my passion for the sport, via the stories I can share about all of the interesting experiences I have. All of the interesting people I meet. All of the amazing courses I am blessed to have the opportunity to play. If I can inspire even a handful of individuals to get off the couch, get “out of their bubble” or “security blanket” and explore more of this big, beautiful planet we all call home? Then I will consider this effort a success.
Derek Tonn is a member of the DGA’s Ambassador Team. His company, Mapformation, LLC, has been DGA’s partner in the development of disc golf tee signage since 2012. The longer our two companies have worked together, and the more Derek has gotten to know all the great folks at DGA, the more he has wanted to formally sing the company’s praises. The more he has realized that “Steady” Ed’s (the father of disc golf and the modern-day Frisbee) vision for the sport and his company perfectly describes his own interests and priorities related to disc golf, and the more Derek has recently been encouraged to share his story.