DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

It has been a few weeks since I was able to get out and enjoy a little disc golf. Bad weather, a busy holiday schedule, ice and bitter cold has kept me off the course, for the most part. So when my wife said she was taking our daughters up to see her sister for the weekend, and the weather forecast in early January was for sunny skies and temperatures in the mid to upper 40s Fahrenheit? Well, I knew it was time to change that.

My first stop on my first course collecting outing of 2019 was to Wild River Disc Golf Course in Mapleton, Iowa. A relatively new course, the playing conditions there for early January were nearly perfect. Apart from a little mud, as well as locals placing garbage bags over all nine sets of chains, I presume to protect the chains from rusting in the Winter? Though in all the hundreds of courses I have played during Winter months, I had never before seen this technique employed to protect baskets. But even with garbage bags over the chains, the baskets caught discs just fine. So I enjoyed a quick, fun round.

I started out with two quick deuces, and then on Hole 3, my tee shot found nothing but chains.  Or should I say…garbage bag?  🙂  The 19th ace of my life, and no one to share it with! I got to share an ace with my oldest daughter on my home course several years ago, as well as two aces with locals at Golf Island Disc Park on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. But nearly every other ace I have ever made has come with me playing alone. That doesn’t make them any less special! It’s just a lot more fun when friends or family are around to share in the fun.

View from the Hole 5 tee at Leif Erikson Park in Sioux City, Iowa.

After my -7 (20) in Mapleton, I headed up to Sioux City, Iowa, to play a new course that had opened since I had previously played every course in the area: Leif Erikson Park. A short course, it played a bit tricky with bad footing (mud, ice). Managed a -3 (24), but a good player, on a good day? Should probably be shooting a -6 (21) or better.

My “Garbage” Ace: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 3 tee at Screamin’ Eagle DGC in Irene, South Dakota.

My next stop on the afternoon was Screamin’ Eagle Disc Golf Course in Irene, South Dakota. Temps were still in the 40s, but there was quite a bit more snow on the ground than I found in Iowa. The footing wasn’t great, but I managed to slip and slide my way to a -4 (23). That is a course where a 20 or even 19 is definitely possible, however. So I left thinking about easier deuces I let get away from me on Holes 3 and 5. Along with longer makeable deuce putts on Holes 8 and 9.

My “Garbage” Ace: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 6 tee at Southeast Tech DGC in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

My final course on the day was at Southeast Tech DGC in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. A place I had disc golfed before, when this course’s predecessor was still in the ground. This new course had similar elements to the former design, though it was definitely a new course layout/design from what had been here previously. I managed a -4 (23) in less than ideal footing as the sun was getting low in the Western sky. So after finishing up my round, I started my 2+ hour trek home.

It was great to get back out on the course! Had been far too long. Here’s to hoping I’ll get more chances to play, as well as more great weather, in the weeks ahead.

Magic Number = 510 (1,490 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.

About Derek

My “Garbage” Ace: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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My “Garbage” Ace: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

It has unfortunately been two weeks since I have been able to touch my discs, much less attempt to add any new courses to my course collection. Busy times at work, coupled with bad weather and a bit of an illness, have done me in. That said, it hasn’t stopped me from researching and dreaming about all the great places around the planet that are still out there to play. And this time of year, my thoughts and dreams head South…to warmer climates.

One of the major barriers to playing a large number of courses around the continent/planet is the time and expense required to reach said courses. As best I can estimate, there are a total of seven new courses I can still play that will not require an overnight stay in some campground, on someone’s couch, or in a hotel. Seven new courses, when I need over 500 new courses to ultimately reach my goal. That means a LOT of potential nights away from home! When I need to stay in a hotel, I usually will stay somewhere cheap (think Super 8, Days Inn or Microtel), via a membership with Wyndham Rewards. And my active PDGA membership has allowed me to save hundreds of dollars per year on the cost of said room nights, via one of the PDGA member perks that has been available.

Even with those discounted room fees? Hotel costs add up quickly. Particularly since just about every town out there has some type of lodging tax that adds $8-$10/night on top of a hotel’s nightly rates. That said, I learned a few years ago how to secure FREE lodging for several days or even weeks on end, via a housesitting service I use called TrustedHousesitters.

TrustedHousesitters is a site that pairs homeowners looking for people to watch their homes with people looking for cheap/free places to stay. Most of the housesits involve looking after a pet or two, along with the occasional watering of plants or bringing in the daily mail. But for free? Those chores can literally be completed in minutes per day. And it is honestly nice to have the occasional dog, cat or other pet to keep me company after a long day of course collecting. But the best part of housesitting? Being able to spread out in an actual home versus living out of a hotel room for days on end. Having a full kitchen to cook meals, and a washer and dryer to do my laundry. All for only the cost of looking after a few pets, or watering a few plants.

If any of you reading this like to travel, are looking for ways to reduce the costs of traveling and playing in lots of new locations, give TrustedHousesitters a try. And if you use the following link: https://www.trustedhousesitters.com/su/zbBxVWeL, or if you enter the following code when you sign up for the service: RAF492 …you will save 25% on your membership fees.

I would estimate that I’ve played at least 250-300 new courses in recent years, as the direct result of me having free lodging in different cities around North America for weeks at a time. My family and I have enjoyed housesits in Boston, MA, Houston, TX, Portland, OR, Washington D.C., San Francisco, CA, Sacramento, CA, Monterey, CA, and Parksville, BC since 2014. Wonderful memories and experiences with my wife and two daughters. And hundreds of new disc golf courses I otherwise would not have been able to afford to play.

Magic Number = 514 (1,486 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.

About Derek

Housesitting: A Cheaper Lodging Alternative for Disc Golf TouristsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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Housesitting: A Cheaper Lodging Alternative for Disc Golf Tourists Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

No course collecting the past couple of days, as I have been busy singing the praises of Disc Golf Association at the 2018 annual conference of the Illinois Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. It has been such an honor being able to spend two days promoting not only DGA to hundreds of event attendees, but also introducing several people to the sport of disc golf for the very first time.

I think those of us in the sport forget sometimes that there are still millions of individuals around the United States alone who have no idea what those strange-looking metal objects with chains are in their city/county parks! So being able to talk about the basics of playing the sport, teaching individuals about the different types of discs and grips, teaching people the X-Step? Is a lot of fun.

A photo of me, Derek Tonn, having a little fun at DGA’s booth space at the 2018 IAHPERD conference in St. Charles, Illinois.

It was an interesting conference, seeing all of the products that are being promoted to Physical Education teachers at K-12 schools throughout the region.  It was also a lot of fun seeing a number of those products being demonstrated in two large “gym floor” areas.  Floor hockey, rollerskating, a game similar to volleyball played with something similar to a tennis racquet, etc.  And then there was me, “banging chains” while making literally hundreds of 15-20 foot putts over the two-day event.  Using the noise and motion to draw people over to our booth to learn a bit more about the sport and DGA’s products.

I really enjoyed getting to know a number of the other vendors as well!  Camps, universities, even the Chicago Bears, in addition to all of the companies promoting their specific products and services. And other than one other exhibitor who was selling 7-8 Quest discs with their company’s name on them? We were the only disc golf presence at the event.

Of course, not everyone in attendance was interested in disc golf!  But for the folks that were, I was able to make several positive connections. Tell folks all-about Steady Ed, and his mantra of “the player that has the most fun wins” while we’re teaching kids and adults a sport that they can enjoy for a lifetime.  For a fraction of the cost of golf or other sports.

It always takes a few months to know how you do at a conference, specific to quality leads and sales! But I did my darnedest to represent both DGA and the sport in a positive light, and will hopefully be able to have a few of those conversations at the event lead to additional opportunities to grow the sport. #IAHPERD18

Magic Number = 514 (1,486 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.

About Derek

IAHPERD Conference: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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IAHPERD Conference: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

Had a really fun day today. Good weather and some fun courses, before finally setting into my hotel in St. Charles, Illinois, in preparation for tomorrow’s Illinois Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance annual conference.

View from the Hole 7 tee at Lions Park in Harvard, Illinois.

My day started in “Hah-vahd,” also known as Harvard, Illinois. A truly fun nine-hole course at Lions Park, with a little bit of everything off the tee. Easily my favorite nine-hole course on this trip! Short holes, long holes, elevation changes, trees.  A great course at which to hone any number of skills throwing discs.  Adam Schultz designed that course back in 2009, and I will just say kudos to Adam for creating a fun place for locals to enjoy!

After enjoying Lions Park, I was met with what was easily the worst course I have played on this trip: Raintree Park in Woodstock, Illinois. Tee signs were missing, but that is forgivable. What was not forgivable was how difficult it was to know where to throw on Hole 4. Where to find the Hole 7 tee. How Holes 4, 5, 6, 8 and 9 are being poorly maintained, with the Hole 5 basket being entirely smashed and bent to no longer function as a basket. How one needs to worry about two neighboring dogs on Holes 4-6, wondering if you are going to be attacked or bitten.  🙁  I played that course as quickly as I possibly could, then left…covered in thousands of clinging seeds from weeds that were as tall as my shoulders. The opposite of a fun experience.

Making my way to Chicago: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 18 tee at Lippold Park in Crystal Lake, Illinois.

After Woodstock, I snuck in a fun eighteen holes at Lippold Park in Crystal Lake, Illinois. One or two holes were still wet/muddy after what I assume must have been some heavy recent rains and mild flooding. But I enjoyed Lippold a lot, and had my best tee shot of the day. Putting my drive on Hole One two inches off the pole for the easy drop-in deuce.

Making my way to Chicago: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 18 tee at Judson University in Elgin, Illinois.

After Lippold Park, it was on to Judson University to spend a little time catching up with a friend of mine from my undergraduate college days. My friend teaches Math, Physics and Astronomy for the institution, so I got the grand tour of his academic building, followed by a quick 18 holes on their campus course (to check out the tee signs we at DGA designed for them). Judson’s course was very short, but very technical! A few of the holes under 200-225 feet were so technical, in fact, that I did not even want to try and get my deuces on those holes! I didn’t like how several of the holes ran extremely close to walking paths and roads, as careless disc golfers could hit pedestrians and/or vehicles with errant throws. But I did have fun.

Making my way to Chicago: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 2 tee at Sunny Hill Park in Streamwood, Illinois.

After Judson, I snuck in a quick nine holes at Sunny Hill Park in Streamwood, then made my way down to St. Charles to check into my hotel and prep for the conference. However, I got into my hotel a little earlier than I had planned, so I decided to head down to Geneva to squeeze in eighteen more holes of disc golf at The Links of Wheeler Park before sunset.

Making my way to Chicago: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 11 tee at The Links at Wheeler Park in Geneva, Illinois.

The Links at Wheeler Park was a great way to end my day, as it was my kind of course.  Numerous trees, though not a lot of places to lose plastic. A well-groomed park, with plenty of chances to throw a variety of different discs and shots over the course of the round. I don’t think I will have a chance to play any more courses before I return home to Minnesota…as between weather, limited daylight, and needing to get back in time for another event, the planets are aligning against me. That said, getting eleven new courses played over the past two days feels like a great accomplishment.

Magic Number = 514 (1,486 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.

About Derek

Making my way to Chicago: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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Making my way to Chicago: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

Hit the road this morning, heading toward Chicago to exhibit on DGA’s behalf at the Illinois Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance annual conference in St. Charles, Illinois. And with good weather, a good vehicle, and good health? I had to squeeze in as much disc golf as I could in the more-limited daylight hours of late Fall.

View from the Hole 5 tee at Kiwanis of Stoughton DGC in Stoughton, Wisconsin.

My day started at Door Creek Disc Golf Course on the East side of Madison, Wisconsin. A church course, it plays in a counter-clockwise circle around the main complex and parking areas. I then headed for Stoughton, Wisconson, to check out the nine-hole Kiwanis of Stoughton course. I liked that one! Though parking is very limited, and it feels a bit intimidating walking quite a distance back along a fenced-off area before one finally locates the Hole 1 tee.

After Stoughton, I headed to Edgerton, Wisconsin to check-out Edgerton DGC, then pushed as quickly as I could for Milton, Wisconsin, squeezing in rounds at King Park and Schilberg Park before sunset. I’m calling it a night in Janesville, Wisconsin, before pushing for St. Charles (and several more disc golf courses played) tomorrow.

Magic Number = 520 (1,480 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.

About Derek

Course Collecting in Wisconsin: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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Course Collecting in Wisconsin: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

Made it back home to Southwestern Minnesota today. But not before getting three final courses played on the day. I started my morning throwing a quick nine holes at Tolmie Park in Keokuk, Iowa. A short course, only measuring in at 1,657 feet! But I thought it was a fun round, with just a “hint of trouble” one could get themselves into off the tee on Holes 3 and 7 if you aren’t careful.

After Tolmie Park, I snuck in a quick six-hole course at Oak Park DGC in Ainsworth, Iowa.  One of the last courses in the greater Iowa City area that I had yet to play. I thought it was a beautiful little park, with just the right amount of trees and some nice elevation change from hole to hole. An easy course to deuce every hole, which I did!  But there are some ace runs out there too…so I am sure that course record is probably 11 shots.

View from the Hole 7 tee at Tiffin Timbers in Tiffin, Iowa.

My final round of the day, of the trip, was at Tiffin Timbers in Tiffin, Iowa. A fairly challenging 3,371 foot nine-hole course with some surprisingly difficult rough to contend with. I managed to shoot a +1 (28) throwing safeties off of just about every tee. I also got to dance with my second snake of the trip…a ~30-inch snake that didn’t look poisonous to me (though let’s just say I didn’t want to get close enough to find out for sure). And with the fact that there is not a single course between Tiffin, Iowa and Springfield, Minnesota that I have not already played? That put a pretty bow on my course collecting work via this particular trip. Thirty-six new courses played across nine US States, with me now having played at least ten disc golf courses in thirty of the fifty US States. Not too shabby!

Magic Number = 525 (1,475 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.

About Derek

From Southeast Iowa to Home: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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From Southeast Iowa to Home: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

Today was my first chance in quite a while to play and study some of the course designs created by H.B. Clark. A world-renowned course designer who has designed a number of courses in Kentucky and Tennessee. My first stop on the day was at Airport Park in Clarksville, Tennessee. One of H.B.’s designs from 2010. I thought it was quite a shame while playing the course, as it isn’t being maintained very well.  So I am sure that your average player who plays that design gives it a low rating.  Due to maintenance, rather than H.B.’s vision for the property.

View from the Hole 4 tee at Calvert City Old Park DGC in Calvert City, Kentucky.

After finishing up at Airport Park, soaked in cold water from my feet up to my knees, I was able to play two additional H.B. designs. The first at Old Park in Calvert City, Kentucky. The second at Doctor’s Park DGC, also in Calvert City. Two nine-holers that I thought were a lot of fun to play! Old Park was shorter, weighing in at 2,500 feet over nine holes. But Doctor’s Park had a bit more teeth to it…measuring 3,145 feet over nine holes.

H.B. Clark Day: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 6 tee at Doctor’s Park DGC in Calvert City, Kentucky.

Hole 6 at Doctor’s Park gave me a laugh, as I had an older couple shout: “Did you mean to do that?” after I put my approach shot under a big branch and through 3-4 trees on its way to landing about ten feet left of the basket from around 240 feet away. I said, “Yes, I meant to do that.” And then they both said: “Well then, you must be pretty good!”  Ha!  It’s always nice to have other people see and appreciate some good shots, as so many of my rounds are played when I am literally the only person on an entire course!  I can shout and pump my fist into the air, and not a single person would know I am there.

After Doctor’s Park, I drove up to Marion, Illinois to check out Pharoah’s Way DGC, an eighteen-hole course that I had not yet had the opportunity to play. A neighbor’s barking, very aggressive dog ruined my mood in the middle of the round, but I quickly got my head back in a good place and managed to post a -7 (47) on the 4,562 foot course.  It sounds easier than it actually was…as there were several holes where OB, water, and rough to avoid came into play. And with me needing to cover hundreds of miles on the day?  Let’s just say that if a hole looked as though I could lose discs and/or waste a LOT of time searching for my drives? I would usually lay-up and throw a safety.

H.B. Clark Day: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 4 tee at Paul A. Schroeder Park in Manchester, Missouri.

After Pharoah’s Way, I played a quick nine holes at Veteran’s Memorial Park in Mt. Vernon, Illinois, then made my way over to the West side of St. Louis, Missouri to catch a quick nine holes at Paul A. Schroeder Park in Manchester. I enjoyed that course, though I ran out of daylight to try and get one additional new course played in Iowa. It would have been a chance to say that I had played disc golf courses in five different States in a single day!  Oh well, I needed to settle for six courses played across Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois and Missouri.  I’ll knock a few more courses out in Iowa tomorrow, as I make my final push for home.

Magic Number = 528 (1,472 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.

About Derek

H.B. Clark Day: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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H.B. Clark Day: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

Today took a little longer to get on the road than I had hoped, so I hardly got any disc golf played before calling it a night in Clarksville, Tennessee. That said, I did manage to sneak-in two nine-hole courses on the day.

My first course was Sarah Moore Greene DGC in Knoxville, Tennessee. Very short, and adjacent to a school. When we arrived at the park, we saw a man out metal detecting by the Hole 8 basket. So I teased my mom that I would also be “hunting for metal” on my round…seeing what I could do about getting an ace on this trip!

View from the Hole 6 tee at Sarah Moore Greene DGC in Knoxville, Tennessee.

I managed to hit metal on the VERY short 108-foot Hole 2, but it never had a chance of going in. But on Hole 6, a 226-foot shot around a tree, I heard that sweet, sweet sound: “CHING!” Heavy, heavy metal. So, thinking I could proclaim myself to be “Nostradiscus” by calling my ace shot before I left the car, I excitedly ran around the tree to find my disc laying on the ground.  Two or three feet from the pole. The chains couldn’t hold my Squall off the tee…so I had to settle for the deuce. Nine deuces on the round, on the (only) 1,400-foot course.

Course Collecting in Tennessee: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 7 tee at Mundy Park in Mount Juliet, Tennessee.

My second and final round on the day was at Mundy Park in Mount Juliet, Tennessee. Another short nine-holer, measuring in at only 1,743 feet. And also a course that was confusing to play, as it took a while to figure out that Hole 2 was actually now Hole 1.  With a ninth hole being added after Hole 8. I had to approximate tee locations for Holes 7, 8 and 9. But instead of being frustrated by the outdated/missing signage and the lack of three clearly marked tee areas, I decided to enjoy adding a “+1” to my course collection in Tennessee.

I am excited for tomorrow, as if the weather cooperates? I should be able to play a few H.B. Clark designs.  H.B. is a world-famous course designer, who has designed numerous courses throughout Kentucky and Tennessee.  And I think I should be able to visit as many as three of his designs if the planets align…

Magic Number = 534 (1,466 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.

About Derek

Course Collecting in Tennessee: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

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Course Collecting in Tennessee: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

After spending most of the past three days attending the North American Cartographic Information Society annual conference in Norfolk, Virginia for work, today it was time to start the long march back toward Minnesota, via South Carolina. Though with time on my hands, and “only” 300+ miles to drive before meeting with family tomorrow morning, I decided to sneak-in a few courses.

My first stop on the day was at Barber Park in Greensboro, North Carolina. The course was very wet, and there was periodic rain (a theme on this trip…sigh). But the toughest part of playing the course came after playing Hole 10. There was supposed to be a rather long walk between Holes 10 and 11, and on my walk toward Hole 11, I encountered a very large, ominous sign that read: “NO TRESPASSING. VIOLATORS WILL BE CHARGED WITH A FELONY!” Gulp. Not wanting to have an extended-stay inside of any North Carolina courthouse or prison, I decided to steer-clear of said area. Instead skipping ahead to Hole 15, which was along a paved trail outside of the “no trespassing area. After finishing Hole 18, I walked inside of a recreation center on park property. I asked one of the men who was working there if, in fact, there were four disc golf holes in an area where the public is (at least) not currently allowed. He said yes, so I told him that I made it a 14-hole course during my visit. Though I did see an elderly gentleman strolling up the road past the no trespassing signage, as if to thumb his nose at the rules and say: “What are you going to do? Handcuff and arrest an old man?” 🙂

View from the Hole 3 tee at Vietnam Veterans Park in Concord, North Carolina.

After Greensboro, I continued on my way toward Charlotte, North Carolina, my destination for the evening. Along the way, I enjoyed a quick nine holes at Vietnam Veterans Park in Concord, as well as nine holes at Dorton Park, also in Concord. Dorton Park used land that is also used by people walking along a trail system. And just in the 20 minutes I was there, I encountered four sets of people out walking their dogs…with those individuals being directly in the line of fire off the tee on at least three or four holes. Dorton seemed like a course that might not stand the test of time if local players are not careful, as all it will take is one disc golfer who is either selfish, careless or inebriated to have other park users demand that the “safety hazard” (disc golf course) be pulled from the ground.

Course Collecting in North Carolina: Tonn’s Travels

View from the Hole 4 tee at Kilborne TPC in Charlotte, North Carolina.

After finishing up in Concord, I made my way to Charlotte, and with a little extra time on my hands before sunset and checking into my hotel? I decided to play a quick eighteen holes at Kilborne TPC. My kind of course, as it has lots of trees and provided a good balance of length and technical shots (tunnels/alleys) off the tee. Posted a -2 (54) on the card…which was good enough for an estimated rating of 972.

Tomorrow my priority will be to pick up my mom in South Carolina, followed by playing a few courses and pushing as far into Tennessee as we can. Starting the LONG march back toward Minnesota.  Hopefully without seeing any more rain…or [shudder] “the white stuff.”  🙂

Magic Number = 536 (1,464 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.

About Derek

Course Collecting in North Carolina: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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Course Collecting in North Carolina: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

DGA | Disc Golf Association DGA | Disc Golf Association – The Founding Company of Disc Golf!

After waking up with the sun and sneaking in a quick eighteen holes of disc golf at Cornwallis Road Park in Durham, North Carolina, I made my way to Virginia Beach, Virginia ahead of the 2018 NACIS Annual Conference. I did this in order to play the one course I absolutely had to play on this trip: Bayville Farms Park. This eighteen hole course was originally designed by the one and only “Steady” Ed Headrick back in 1977, and locals tell me it is the second oldest remaining disc golf course on the Atlantic Coast. The course has changed and evolved quite a bit over the past 41 years! Not the least of which was the replacement of the original DGA baskets with Innova DISCatchers (BOO!  Ha!). But Ed’s fingerprints are still on that course, via the short tee and basket positions.

You can tell from the short tee and basket positions how much the sport has evolved over the past four decades!  I only wish I would have had my old 141g World Class Frisbee to throw those holes.  Experience those holes as Ed had intended them to be played. But after my round, I couldn’t help but have a personal moment of silence. Looking around, breathing in the air, and smiling.  Seeing another bit of history, and one of the VERY early places where our sport got its start.

View from the Hole 4 tee at Poplar Hall 9 in Norfolk, Virginia.

After finishing up at Bayville, I had just enough time to sneak in one more nine-hole course before I needed to shower and get ready for the opening sessions at NACIS. So I decided to check out a relatively new course: Poplar Hall 9 in Norfolk. A fun little course that plays fast. And I got to meet two nice locals and help one of them find their lost disc on Hole 6. They told me a couple of times that I didn’t need to spend all that time helping them, but I said: “Leave no disc behind.”  🙂  And we didn’t. I eventually found the lost driver, about 8-9 feet off the ground, wedged between two branches.

That will likely be it on the disc golf front for the next few days. But getting to play Bayville, and the bit of nostalgia and history that comes along with it, should hold me over until I am back on the road.

Magic Number = 540 (1,460 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.

About Derek

Enjoying a Bit of History: Tonn’s TravelsDerek 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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow Derek Tonn on his Travels.

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Enjoying a Bit of History: Tonn’s Travels Derek Tonn

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