Disc golf has for the first time slipped into a city park in Madison Heights.
The new disc golf course opened over a week ago at the city’s versatile 31-acre Rosie’s Park at 1111 Farnum.
“It’s been very popular since we opened it,” said City Manager Melissa Marsh. “It was raining for our grand opening on May 6, but there were quite a few people there.”
Designed as a nine-hole course, Madison Heights disc golf is open year-round
Disc golf was born and the first course was designed in the 1970s, according to the Professional Disc Golf Association.
The game is similar to golf. Instead of clubs and balls, players throw a Frisbee or frisbee from a teeing area at a target instead of a hole.
Usually disc golf targets are raised wire baskets. As in traditional golf, the objective is to complete the game with the fewest pitches as the players progress down a fairway.
Disc golf is designed to accommodate people of all ages and physical abilities.
“Disc golf provides upper and lower body conditioning, aerobic exercise, and mental stimulation,” the PDGA states on its website. “Concentration skills increase by mastering shots and negotiating obstacles, and players of limited fitness level can start slowly and gradually increase their level of play.”
Other nearby towns have opened their own disc golf courses over the years. Royal Oak has an 18-hole course at Starr-Jaycee Park which opened in 1981, and a second course at Wagner Park which debuted five years later. Hazel Park opened its nine-hole course at Green Acres Park last year.
There are approximately 500 courses statewide.
The popularity of disc golf continues to grow, according to a recent report by U diskwhich offers subscriptions for its disc golf app for scoring which is used by approximately 1 million people. Worldwide, there are about 13,000 courses and 90% of them are free.
The Madison Heights Parks and Recreation Master Plan has called for the city to establish a disc golf course for more than a decade, Marsh said.
“We wanted to do it before, but we didn’t have the money,” she said.
A $9,000 state grant covered most of the cost of creating the disc golf course, and two marijuana companies in Madison Heights — Liberty Cannabis and PUFF Cannabis — donated a total of $3,000, Marsh said.
Each of the marijuana companies has pledged to donate $25,000 annually to Madison Heights projects through the city’s Community Advisory Board.
More information about the town’s disc golf course and how the game is played is on the town’s website at madison-heights.org/868/Rosies-Disc-Golf-Course.