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Old 08-29-2014, 02:43 AM
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Default Michigan pay to play

So I've posted this on reddit and a couple of local facebook groups, but I'm trying to obtain as large of a response as possible, so here goes:

I'm looking into the possibility of approaching a private land owner about a pay to play course. The course would be in the Grand Rapids area. I'm basically just looking for some data to show them that they could make money with a disc golf course.

I would appreciate responses from anyone in Michigan, but if you travel frequently and would potentially play a course in the Grand Rapids, MI area, feel free to respond to the survey.

Thanks in advance for your participation!

Survey link here.
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Old 08-29-2014, 07:53 AM
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done. what area you looking to be around?
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Old 08-29-2014, 08:21 AM
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How many disc golfers are in the Grand Rapids area? Do you know, for example, how many play Brewer per week? Of that, how many are serious enough to pay to play?
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Old 08-29-2014, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by zgmc View Post
How many disc golfers are in the Grand Rapids area? Do you know, for example, how many play Brewer per week? Of that, how many are serious enough to pay to play?
well i would assume 65% of people who play brewer would not pay to play. I think the location is key. If it's in the Lowell area it can piggy back on the 3 courses out there, and can get other people to come along. If it's in Rockford Area, it will be the only one of its kind and would probably fetch a good amount.
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Old 08-29-2014, 08:51 AM
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Some thoughts...Uh oh, Dave is thinking again...

Anyways, if you are going to make a pay to play in that area I think it is going to need to be something really special. The fact is, the GR area is loaded with free or almost free courses. Like it or not, the disc mecca of Michigan is not a far jaunt down I-96 with the likes of Mason County parks and Flip City. Going the other direction there's all those sweet courses in the Kalamazoo area like, Oshtemo, Robert Morris and Meyer-Broadway.

The reality is this is what you're competing with. If I lived in GR my reaction to a pay to play course would be, "If I have to pay $10 (or whatever you decide on price) per day to play there how far can I drive on $10 worth of gas? And do I want to stay at the same course all day to make the most of my $10?"

This post is not meant to discourage you rather I am trying to give a well meaning push in the right direction. In other words, if you want to make some $$$ at this the course is going to need to be on par with the likes of the Mason County parks or even Flip or you are going to have to offer amenities that cannot be found at the surrounding courses. Good luck and I really hope it works out. Keep us updated.
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Old 08-29-2014, 09:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davetherocketguy View Post
Some thoughts...Uh oh, Dave is thinking again...

Anyways, if you are going to make a pay to play in that area I think it is going to need to be something really special. The fact is, the GR area is loaded with free or almost free courses. Like it or not, the disc mecca of Michigan is not a far jaunt down I-96 with the likes of Mason County parks and Flip City. Going the other direction there's all those sweet courses in the Kalamazoo area like, Oshtemo, Robert Morris and Meyer-Broadway.

The reality is this is what you're competing with. If I lived in GR my reaction to a pay to play course would be, "If I have to pay $10 (or whatever you decide on price) per day to play there how far can I drive on $10 worth of gas? And do I want to stay at the same course all day to make the most of my $10?"

This post is not meant to discourage you rather I am trying to give a well meaning push in the right direction. In other words, if you want to make some $$$ at this the course is going to need to be on par with the likes of the Mason County parks or even Flip or you are going to have to offer amenities that cannot be found at the surrounding courses. Good luck and I really hope it works out. Keep us updated.

thats kind of what I was thinking. But on the flip side. If the course was a little better then the most and had less traffic would you be willing to pay 1 to 5 bucks a round? I normally donate about 5 bucks a round to a private course anyways, however when I see it's pay to play and it doesn't have better than 3.5 reviews... i normally don't go to it.
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Old 08-29-2014, 09:21 AM
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You have to get a lot of people coming through on a daily basis to turn any kind of a profit. There would be employees involved. This means taxes, work comp, ect.. An investor is going to want numbers. You could probably find out how many players go through Flip City on a regular basis. That would give you something to go by at least.
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Old 08-29-2014, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by sgamerp View Post
thats kind of what I was thinking. But on the flip side. If the course was a little better then the most and had less traffic would you be willing to pay 1 to 5 bucks a round? I normally donate about 5 bucks a round to a private course anyways, however when I see it's pay to play and it doesn't have better than 3.5 reviews... i normally don't go to it.
For 1 to 5 bucks? Definitely. Even with a 3.5 rating I'd probably still go. That's pretty cheap IMHO. I was speaking from the perspective that the charge would be a lot more than that. That was the impression I got when I filled out the survey.
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Old 08-29-2014, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zgmc View Post
How many disc golfers are in the Grand Rapids area? Do you know, for example, how many play Brewer per week? Of that, how many are serious enough to pay to play?
I plan to go out to some different courses in the area and take counts and potentially pass out more surveys so I can get information like this. I know the San Diego area did something similar a year or two ago and it yielded them a lot of good data to work with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgamerp View Post
well i would assume 65% of people who play brewer would not pay to play. I think the location is key. If it's in the Lowell area it can piggy back on the 3 courses out there, and can get other people to come along. If it's in Rockford Area, it will be the only one of its kind and would probably fetch a good amount.
It would be in the Rockford area. The closest course now is 15 minutes away, I imagine that would be less if the West River Dr. course comes in soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zgmc View Post
You have to get a lot of people coming through on a daily basis to turn any kind of a profit. There would be employees involved. This means taxes, work comp, ect.. An investor is going to want numbers. You could probably find out how many players go through Flip City on a regular basis. That would give you something to go by at least.
The possibility is there for a pro shop on site (without the construction of any buildings) that would sell food and drinks as well as discs and other gear. In addition to money made from players, sales profits would help ensure that overall it is a profitable endeavor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by davetherocketguy View Post
For 1 to 5 bucks? Definitely. Even with a 3.5 rating I'd probably still go. That's pretty cheap IMHO. I was speaking from the perspective that the charge would be a lot more than that. That was the impression I got when I filled out the survey.
I've looked at the prices for greens fees at similar locations and decided that $10 would probably be the max fee, but I know some people would be willing to pay more, hence the further options.
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Old 08-29-2014, 12:07 PM
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And when I say amenities I mean something like this:

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