Reporting David McCoy
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A sport born in the 1970s, the first Frisbee golf targets were telephone poles and fire hydrants. But, today, the sport is not only growing, it is changing.
Charlie Hutchinson started selling golf discs out of the trunk of his car 20 years ago. Now he’s in this big warehouse in Golden Valley, which he’s already had to expand twice in the last two years.
“I’ve taken this company from doing literally a couple thousand (Frisbees) a year to a few million a year,” Hutchinson said.
The disc golf business is booming and it’s easy to see why: The cost is low, and it’s simple to pick up.
“Anyone from a 4-year-old little kid to an 80-year-old man can pick up a disc and have success throwing it — and have fun throwing it,” Hutchinson said.
Twenty years ago, there were only about 200 courses in the whole country. Now, there’s that many within an hour of the Twin Cities.
“These course are going in like crazy because they cost next to nothing to install and next to nothing to maintain,” Hutchinson said.
At Bryant Lake Park in Eden Prairie, it’s a whole lot more than just a basket. They’ve got a beautifully landscaped and mulched area, backstop, signage, sand, rock landscaping, a place to hang your bag and garbage cans.
The only catch: you have to pay to play. As more and more courses start charging, it’s a sign of things changing.
It’s a necessary step for a sport that continues to grow.
“I think it’s inevitable that this sport is the sport of the future,” Hutchinson said.