Making Connections II: Tonn’s Travels
Now that I am (more) settled in Los Angeles at my aunt and uncle’s place (two of the nicest people one could ever hope to meet and proudly call family), I decided to head up toward Santa Clarita and Palmdale, knocking out a couple new courses played with an additional stop to check out a nine hole course in Green Valley.
After playing a couple holes in Green Valley, I noticed a friendly man walking out toward me, asking if I needed help figuring the course out (since I had unknowingly started playing the course on Hole 3). It turns out that said man was Kenny Drew, the designer of the course. Then Kenny asked if I wanted him to play and show me around the course. I happily said yes.
Kenny had a great story to tell! He started playing back in 1977, and was a part of the early tournament scene in SoCal. He designed the Green Valley course back in 2001. In part to help the community give kids in town something to do besides vandalize the local community center. Disc golf did the trick, as kids quickly adopted the course as their own, scolding others for littering on “their course.”
As is the case with just about every course designer I come across, Kenny takes great pride in his work! He has poured countless hours of blood, sweat and tears into that property, and I was blessed to get to play “the back nine” (long/pro tees) with the man who had the vision for them.
After finishing my round with Kenny, he was kind enough to give me directions to Palmdale (since my cell service was not working in the mountains). And as I headed toward my first turn, I passed him on his bike, sharing one final, friendly wave. Thanks Kenny. I appreciate the hospitality.
Magic Number = 684 (1,316 courses played)
About Tonn’s Travels
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 our “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 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.