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Advice for introducing DG to summer camp kids?


Bronze level trusted reviewer
Jun 27, 2009
Sioux Falls , SD
Hello All,

I am working on getting a new course in at a Christian retreat. The retreat is all about upgrading what they currently have (6 Discatcher Pros and no marked tees) and making a well designed 9-hole with intent on upgrading to 18 or 27 in the future. Part of the selling aspect of getting this course redesigned is by teaching disc golf to the kids attending summer camps at the retreat. What I was wondering is if anyone could tell me how I could go about getting a supply of discs for the kids to use at a resonable rate? I have looked at the EDGE program, but is there any other resources out there for introducing disc golf to a large group of kids and adults? Thanks for any input!!
make sure to get enough baskets so u can have no more then 10 kids to a basket and make sure to get solid all around discs maybe like an ape ore nuke os
I introduced Disc Golf to the camp I work for three years ago. Real disc golf i mean, we have had tree golf with lids for over twenty years but no one knew about baskets until about five years ago. We now have a sweet 9 hole course, and there are multiple rounds going on some days! It's awesome. As the guy who maintains all of the equipment for the activity, campers and staff are directed to me to before they head off to the course. And of course, i can always drop what i'm doing and head out for a round of 9, whatever makes the kids happy right?

Anyway, it took some time to get things established and developed. Lots of prodding the higher ups and and me going to the different age groups each day trying to muster up players. after a while it turned out we needed to limit the amount of kids signing up to play. Initially i contacted the Edge program and they sent us some free misprints to start with, but really just ordering a bunch of cheap wizards and buzzzes is what worked best for us. Disc get lost and you need to replace them. I usually look for bulk buys on ebay. I also found an extinct course nearby that had 9 discatchers, they were kind of banged up but i got them for a hundo each. Maybe, there's a course nearby that's looking to upgrade baskets and you can get their old ones? I contacted Innova and Discraft directly to get pricing info. They're a bit more generous to camps and church orgs. In the end, the Captain is right, EDGE is probably your best bet. The packages they have listed on the site are general, packages for people who need more guidance with instruction, it comes with curriculum and such. It sounds like you know how to teach disc golf and don't need all that extra stuff. If you call the EDGE rep and explain exactly what you're looking for they're pretty good about working out a deal if you don't need 30 minis and you don't want 9 traveler baskets, etc.

Little things like a course record for different age groups, and our ACE list, currently only one ace listed, and a little kiosk with a course map and score cards really amped it up. When the kids could see their friends listed there, they wanted their name on the board so they played more...

Good Luck!
make sure to get enough baskets so u can have no more then 10 kids to a basket and make sure to get solid all around discs maybe like an ape ore nuke os

No offense, but I wouldn't recommend starting kids off with high speed overstable discs, they just turn and burn and land thirty feet out, it disappoints the kids. Most of our kids use rff wizards, just in case one kid runs ahead and gets pegged in the back of the skull! and they have stormtroppers stamped on them, kids love star wars!

Once they get the hang of throwing flat (releasing the disc at the right angles) and develop good form we move them up to a buzzz or meteor. We also use some Sharks, they're a relatively good disc to start with too, get mixed weights, but nothing to heavy, for beginners. IMO, Eagles are also good drivers to begin with.
I would touch base with the closest disc manufacturer and/or distributor. The will often lend or give some resources.
I was checking out the EDGE program and I really like that they offer lighter discs for kids in the 130g range. The retreat I am working with has had 6 Discatcher Pros for around 7 years now, but no marked tees and the baskets were installed before they started adding cabins and lodges to the campground. I got them to agree to get 3 more baskets and do a redesigned 9-hole until they are willing to upgrade to 18. The retreat has been looking for ways to bring new visitors out there as it is a place to be enjoyed by everyone and not just the campers. They also have a playground, horse trails, nature trails, basketball court, archery range, challenge course, tubing hill, and a swimming pool that are all available to the public on a 350 acre plot of land. I have expressed to them that disc golf is an inexpensive way to utilize all of the amazing land they have that currently isn't being utilized and is a great healthy activity for all ages.
I would say it's important to keep the course simple and fairly wide open. I've played a number of camp courses where the skill and technical level was too difficult for the average beginner. I spent a majority of my time sloshing through waist high grass, overgrown creeks and treacherous hillsides looking for my errant throws. Campers just taking up the sport don't want to spend their time looking through dense, underbrush for their discs.

You can't believe how poorly the average 13 year girl can throw a disc. And make sure it's properly and very clearly signed.
You could try calling Gateway. They make lightweight stuff and Dave has been pretty generous to people who need discs for a good cause like this in the past.

I definitely agree with The Valk Kid, keep the distances short and avoid nasty rough. It's good to make some holes where the kids can learn to shape some different lines, but for that context it's better to do it with a couple mature trees rather than nasty brush or tall grass. Make the holes even shorter than you think, it's always easier to add long tees for the kids who really get it than it is to convince the kids to move to shorter tees after they've already been playing from the existing set. Go with 80-150' holes like an ace race IMO.
all solid advice above! we have two sets of tees, one that has all holes between 250-350 feet, for the kids between age 12-16 and the other around 50-75 feet for the 8-12 year olds. They work well! All Par 3's obviously. We have some kids who get good fast so there's no reason why the younger kids can't play the longer tees. I have a secret set of longer long tees on most holes that make it worthwhile for me to play, they're not laid out 'cept in my head. Some day i may officially add them...

just make sure when planning you consider both beginners and experts, as it seems this course will go in a place that might invite all types of players and it doesn't seem like there is any shortage of land either...
After meeting with the retreat again, they want to do a 9 hole to start out with and have short and long tees for each hole. It will be a pretty bare bones course to start with, grass or dirt tees and hopefully two pin placements per hole. The trick to designing this course is using what we have to work with to make it good enough and fun enough that players from the city will frequent the course; it is about 26 miles from Sioux Falls, which is South Dakota's largest city and home to currently only one 18-hole course. If the retreat sees a draw for the course then they will be more than willing to upgrade to 18 holes. The vision is to eventually get this course to championship level along with having tees and pin placements to satisfy beginner level players as well. The town between the city and the retreat is getting a 9-hole river bottom course as well, so that will help in bringing out players from the city by having the option to play two courses 8 miles apart from each other.

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