A nine-hole golf course is planned for 10 acres of unused land at Mason Park in Mount Sterling, however, it won’t be golf balls that are flying through the air.
In an effort to bring recreation options to Mount Sterling, Village Administrator Dusty Parker is spearheading the creation of a disc golf course. The object of the game is to throw Frisbees or other flying discs into wire baskets on five-foot tall poles in as few tosses as possible.
“It’s just another thing that’s fairly inexpensive to do and wouldn’t add much of anything to our maintenance load,” Parker said.
Donations are being sought to cover the cost of creating the course. Each hole, which consists of a wire basket, pole, and concrete pitching tee, costs approximately $500. Parker said he already has three of the holes covered.
One of the donors is the Ohio Rural Water Association, thanks to the efforts of Ruben Youngblood, an information technology employee with the association who competes professionally on the disc golf circuit.
“I got to know Ruben through the Rural Water Association,” Parker said. “At the annual conference, I brought the idea of the disc golf course up to him. When I asked him what he thought of us working together to design a course for Mount Sterling, his eyes lit up.”
Youngblood, a resident of Clintonville, has been playing disc golf since he was in high school. Due to his love of the sport, he said he was happy to volunteer for the Mount Sterling project.
“We scanned the layout of the land and came up with six ideas,” he said. “Our favorite idea is based on our target audience—families, rather than pros.”
In the preferred plan, the average distance to each hole is 180 feet. Hole 1 will be located near the park’s main sign and likely will include an announcement board for rules, course etiquette guidelines, tournament and clinic dates, and course news, such as photos of disc golfers who make holes-in-one.
Youngblood’s design includes a low-depression water hazard near the center of the course. The feature would serve two purposes; it would add interest to the course and alleviate existing drainage issues for neighboring properties.
The course will be situated so as not to interfere with the baseball and soccer leagues that play at Mason Park.
Youngblood said disc golf is a great community recreation option for many reasons:
• It’s cheap. Only one disc golf course in central Ohio charges people to play, and even that is only $1.75 per round or $3 for the day. All others, including Mount Sterling’s future course, are free.
• It’s less time-consuming and potentially less frustrating than “ball golf.”
• It’s good exercise for people of all ages.
“I’ve seen couples in their 70s out on courses. It’s also a great way to wear out kids. Just let them throw it and chase it around,” Youngblood said.
• Players can make the sport as challenging as they like by learning how to manipulate the discs, which, if you go beyond your garden variety Frisbee, can include “drivers,” “putters,” “mid-range” flyers and more.
In the future, a paved walking trail might be incorporated into the disc golf course area of the park.
The goal is to have the course installed this summer. Anyone who would like to donate to the project should contact Dusty Parker at 740-869-2040.