Simple, but right off the highway
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This short, open nine hole course features quality concrete tee pads, adequate signage, reasonably easy course flow, and newer Discatchers for casual to recreational players to enjoy. There are a few trees and a path to navigate on the opening hole, which starts right at the course sign and water fountain, and fairly nearby a basic, clean-looking playground if you're traveling with the kids and need to fling a few.
Distances range from 170' to 385', and you have flexibility on almost every hole to shape your shot the way you want to. Folks above Recreational skill level might enjoy ace running most of these holes. Almost all flight lines are safely laid out and separated from one another, so it makes for a pretty good beginner course.
Cons: Unfortunately, the course only boasts one hole that will have you breaking out anything more than a mid or a putter. There is a little walk after hole 3 and a lengthier walk after hole 9. Hole 1 aims straight down the paved path amongst a set of about five trees, while hole 5 aims right at a fenced back yard, with its basket about 20 feet away, and only one lone pine to catch overthrows from your ace run, so caution is needed even on the shortest holes.
The design is OK, but I kept wondering if they were forbidden to utilize the small woods just to the right of hole 4. Might add some flavor to the course if they could add two or three holes in there. Finally, the park has a storm drainage run that looks like it could get marshy after a heavy rain, and that might come into play if you go long on 1, or right on 2 or 3.
Other Thoughts: Oddly enough, I chose to stretch my legs at Brent Johnson Park as I headed west along I-74 and ran into a traffic jam (construction). I got off at a McDonalds, changed into playing clothes, and found the park was an easy looking nine hole course that let me skip the two miles of construction. Little did I realize The Valkyrie Kid had just swung by here the day before joining up with me for a round at Idlewild. Small world!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Build The Course Now Or Wait Twenty-Five Years For The Trees To Mature?
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Brent Johnson Park is new little park in a housing sub-division. The park flat with quite a few trees have been planted. They'll be nice, for the park and he course, as they grow larger.
The course has first class amenities with nice, large concrete tee pads, a course sign with the rules of disc golf, new Discatchers with the yellow bands and #'s and tee signs with the hole # and distance. Distances range from two holes at 170' to # 8's 385'. So most players will bring out their driver for # 8. The only challenge beside the wind is threading your throws between a few of the smallish trees.
There is an ugly ditch along hole 2, thick rough along holes 3 & 4 and the # 5 basket is tucked right into the corner of the park with the rough on the right side and the neighbor's fence just a few feet past the basket. I don't believe this particular neighbor will be happy with disc coming into his yard. And no, I didn't get a chance to meet Spike, the wonder dog of the fifth hole. I hope he was at the vet being neutered.
Cons: # 5 hole sits too close to neighbor's fence. It wouldn't the course's integrity to move this basket away from said fence.
Course is flat and lacks challenges or more creative hole design. I think the designers did about as much as possible with very limited terrain to work with. Hard to design a hole with a dogleg over open lawns.
Windy! Blame the designer again.
Other Thoughts: No, it's not the most exciting design or the most challenging course but as the small trees become a mite bigger, the course will play a little more creatively.
And maybe the Beast (from the great baseball movie, "Sandlot") will eat all the disc golfers and the park will be left to the walkers and kite flyers and perverts and the homeless.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Ideal for what it is: convenient.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Conveniently located and viewed on Route 47 at the Thornewood subdivision in Mahomet, IL. Seldom used by others for disc golf (I have seen people running their unleashed dogs across the course, flying kites on it, and generally horsing around, but disc golf, not so much). Excellent baskets. Mowed regularly (weekly?) keeping it neatly trimmed and attractive. The signage on each hole is the best in the entire area, maybe all of central Illinois, which is a strange irony given the rather ho-hum nature of the course as a whole.
The entire small park is named after Brent Johnson, a 19-year old, from Seymour, IL, who attended Mahomet High School. He drowned in an unfortunate canoe accident on Cedar Lake nearly fifteen years ago now, and this is a memorial park for Brent. It would be appropriate and kind to think about the young man, and the gift of life and good health provided by this memorial park, while playing here.
Cons: No obstacles, the course appears to be a hodgepodge of concrete tee boxes and yellow baskets thrown onto a mildly undulating field. Hole #7 does have a moderately sized tree that forces a hyzer, and a couple other holes (#9, #3) have trees that, while not factoring into play yet, might someday grow to be challenging if not hit by lightning in the meantime. No trash cans, picnic tables, chairs.
Other Thoughts: Hole #3 runs along a cat-tail ditch on the right. I drove with a putter and, thanks to an errant throw, lost a black Discraft Magnet in the 15 foot wide marshy ditch, perhaps the only fellow ever to lose a disc at Brent Johnson Park. There are some woods along holes #4 and #5 that might eat a disc, too, but none of this would be a factor if one plays toward the center of the field.
The hole that is too close to a house mentioned in other reviews, hole #5, now features an obstacle other than the backyard fence that is, literally, only 20 feet beyond the basket: a full-grown and quite loud chocolate Labrador. It is disarming to attempt that ace on this rather short hole knowing that your disc, should it go long, will be devoured by a beast that looks to enjoy high-end molded plastic as much as Cookie Monster enjoys Oreos. Were the dog quiet, I might not even mention him, but, given that he barks and dashes along the fence with enthusiastic leaps that will have you believing that it's only because of your nervous smile that he doesn't clear the thing altogether and wind up on your chest, I figured I'd mention it. That you can smell his Alpo breath while attempting to sink that easy putt for a deuce, even a man with cool water in his veins will get the yippes from this disobedient mutt. Those players who dislike dogs that weigh as much as they do might avoid the hole altogether, which I'm sure is the main objective of the homeowner, given the surly nature of his rather unattractive "pet".
This is a superb course for practice. As there are few players ever on it, one could choose a hole or two and play them repeatedly to try discs or techniques. For instance, holes #6 and #7 run parallel, and would serve well for repeated out and backs.
All in all, a solid, small course for pitch and putt (and one long and flat open driver on hole #8). Of course, for those that know how great a nine-holer like PJ Irvin in Bloomington can be, this course will disappoint for actual competition. It is what it is, and that said, I'm a big fan of adapting one's game to the course they're presented with. Play it with only a putter (and try not to chuck it into the cat-tails like the last guy to use a putter). Play exclusively forehands. Use only the forgotten discs in your collection, only discs that you wish you never spent money on. Play it on the windiest days with your lightest discs, or in the rain with your slickest plastic. Play it without your sunglasses, on the brightest afternoon, after staring at the sun so that your fully-constricted pupils simulate a narrow approach to the basket. Play it after a snowfall in your cross-country skis. Play it in a rented tuxedo an hour before your best friend weds your ex-wife so that he can buy premium plastic discs with your alimony money. Well, you get the drift.
Each practice variant will improve your game, and each will make even the most pedestrian course pure fun. Enjoy!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Great for what it is.
Pros: This is a clean and well maintained 9-hole course with excellent teepads and baskets. Every hole is clearly marked with distance.
The walking path parallels hole 1 so occasionally you have to wait but otherwise all holes are open.
Cons: There's a good amount of poison oak in the woods that border holes 4 and 5. Generally not as issue but I've been in there a couple of times.
Other Thoughts: I believe this course is a lot better than other reviews suggest, providing your expectations are realistic. The fact that the course does not challenge established players does not mean it deserves a poor rating. If you are expecting a life-changing experience here you are going to be disappointed as there is little in the way of obstacles or elevation changes. What it does offer is a great place for young and new players to experience the game in a great environment. It is also perfect for experienced players to practice various aspects of their game, especially as it is often windy.
Most holes are between 170 and 250 feet, #8 is the only tester at 385. A social non-tournament player is going to get around in a little over par, an 850-rated player will go 2-3 down with only a putter. 900+ players should be 4 or more down without too much trouble.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Not a lot of fun-factor
Pros: - Mostly dedicated area to disc golf, although open areas could be used for anything. Path through the middle of the course, but not an issue.
- Well-manicured, surrounded by a nice subdivision.
- Nice sign and map at the beginning of the course. Posts at each tee had number and distance, all that was needed on this course.
- Concrete tees.
- Really nice baskets.
- Fast play.
Cons: - No obstacles to speak of, really.
- Just a tiny bit of elevation.
- Real length on just one hole, #8.
- #5 basket is much too close to a back yard. It's a really short ace hole too, so if you throw it too hard or it catches the wind, you might be knocking on a front door, or jumping a fence.
- Just not a lot of fun factor here.
Other Thoughts: - Park on the street nearest hole #1 (the south side of the park.) There is no parking in the circle across the way.
- Good for a small community, great for a family stroll.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Open, boring but beginner friendly and nicely maintained
Pros: 1) Distance variation for this 9 hole course is adequate. There are some in the 100's, 200's and even one in the 300's.
2) Very nicely maintained park in a nice looking neighborhood. The grass looked like it was mowed frequently and while the trees were young, they were healthy.
3) Nice new Innova Discatchers. They are new, bright yellow and they catch like they should.
4) Huge concrete, so much concrete for such a small course.
5) Teesigns have Hole Distance and Par.
6) This course is a quick play. I played it in a heavy wind in 18 minutes. Perfect for course bagging. There is virtually nowhere to get in trouble. Only two holes play along the edge of a woodline, the rest is wide open.
7) There is a drainageway through the property that could create some OB. This may or may not always have water in it, it wasn't dry when I played but that could be marked OB all the time.
8) They could easily leave unmowed grass to also artificially create some OB and make this course play more challenging if they wanted. I know it is in a small neighborhood park so it may not be desirable.
9) Beginner friendly course is always appreciated.
10) From the course map, it looks like they intend to plant more trees which can only make this course better. I just hope they are healthy enough to withstand some flying discs.
Cons: 1) Wide open course with very few trees or obstacles in play. There are only 2 holes with any density of woods but it is easy to avoid as it is only on one side of the fairway.
2) There is very little elevation change on this course.
3) Some of the tees and baskets are dangerously close to each other. This is something I would certainly hope wouldn't happen on a beginner course.
4) There is very little here to challenge anyone but a beginner.
5) There is also a walking path that comes into play on a couple of holes.
6) The turf is very spotty, it is obviously a new park so it can be understood, but I still have to list it as a con.
Other Thoughts: While there are a lot of positives for this course, it just doesn't cut it in fun factor for me. I understand it was designed for the neighborhood and beginners, so it was not designed for me. However, there are a couple of ways this course could be played as more challenging for those other than beginners.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
A different kind of bad
Pros: Best aspect of this course was the upkeep.
*It was great to throw from concrete tees again after having to deal with the nightmare teepads of nearby courses
*385 foot hole allows big arms to air it out
*Nice park, playground on site
*Windy course, good control practice
Cons: Absolutely zero obstacles. The disc golf here is completely uninteresting. I brought my girlfriend here, who is not much of a disc golfer (yet) and even she said that this course was extremely bland. At some point during the course it seems like there is maybe a foot or two of elevation and that's about it. A rather unfortunate location for a disc golf course.
Other Thoughts: For whatever reason, this area is pretty much a Bermuda triangle of disc golf. To the West, Bloomington/Normal and Peoria have a ton of disc golf options, to the North, there are great courses in the Joliet/Plainfield area, and to the East, Indiana has fun courses in Indianapolis or at Purdue. Compared to the above areas, this course is a joke.
However, compared to Urbana's Lohmann Park, this course is no worse. The upkeep of this course (nice tee pads, great baskets, nice park) makes playing here a semi-enjoyable experience, despite the complete lack of interesting disc golf. Combine the upkeep of this course with the land that Urbana's DG course is located on and you may have yourself a decent course.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
New to the game
Pros: Wide open course....good for beginners, and practice. Never crowded. Very well maintained. Nice concrete tees. New DISCatchers.
Cons: Can be very windy. Not much of a challenge if you are seasoned player.
Other Thoughts: I live in the neighborhood. New to the game. I had seen this go in in the last year. It is the reason I have picked up a basic set of discs. I am going to try to get out on it as many days as I can. Practice makes you better, and I plan on doing a LOT of practice at this course.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
Pitch & Putt
Pros: This course is just a little 9 hole course in the middle of a subdivision. The baskets are brand new Innova Discatchers. This course is always very well manicured. Holes number 4 & 5 are fairly nice running along the woods. Hole number 8 is also the only place on the course to put some power on your shot. The teepads are nice and new.
Cons: This course is not nearly long enough to make you work. The teepads could be a little longer. The course could also be upgrade by quite a bit with the addition of signs to give distances. The biggest problem with this course is the distinct lack of trees. There are only about 3 in the entire course that actually come into play. Adding a few would help a lot in adding some difficulty to the course.
Other Thoughts: This course is not worth going out and playing if you are looking to play a serious round. I have however gone here a couple of times to play 1 or 2 disc rounds in order to brush up on my game. Its also not a bad way to toss a disc around for 20 minutes or so.
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Poorly planned course
Pros: This course is complete, and new. There are 9 tees, and 9 baskets.
The tees are concrete, which is nice. The baskets are disccatchers, and are in excellent condition.
The course is never crowded.
There's a nice bridge near hole 1, and there is plans for 1 or 2 more nice bridges.
Cons: This course was not designed by a serious player, and it shows badly. There isn't a single interesting shot.
Before the course was put in, it was a questionable choice to use this land for disc golf. It was simply a big flat open field. No earth was moved, so it is as flat as the original field.
A few trees have been added, but with the exception of #7, they aren't in places that would obstruct shots. For #7, there is one tree in line between the tee and basket, but it's halfway down the line. Even when the tree is full grown, it will be rather easy to throw to one side or the other. If the tree was placed closer to the tee, it would have been a lot more interesting.
There are thick woods near holes 4 and 5. I hope that the thick grass and weeds will be cleared out. As it stands right now, finding a disc in there is a bit of an adventure.
According to the plans (found in the links section here), holes 1 and 9 were supposed to be doglegs. Unfortunately, the obstacles needed to make this happen were never added.
With the exception of #8, the distance will not be a challenge to most players.
Other Thoughts: I was ecstatic to see Mahomet get a course, but then very disappointed to see how it turned out. I wrote to the Mahomet park district, asking if I could help out in any way (design, work days, or contribute for a few more trees), and was told that they had it all under control. But, it's quite clear that they didn't consult anyone in the disc golf community before making this course.
It's nice that kids in the are will have this course to play with, and hopefully it will spark interest in the community for a real course. Lake of the Woods seems like a perfect place for Mahomet players to put a course in the future, and I hope that eventually happens.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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