DECATUR TOWNSHIP – Two elementary school teachers in Decatur Township have turned a hobby into a vision, and that vision is becoming a reality.
Evan Sullivan and Ryan Gammons, both teachers at Blue Academy Elementary, discovered disc golf as a hobby. During the course of 2020, they started playing on courts in the area and taking part in some amateur events.
When they started playing other courses, they found that there was no disc golf course in the vicinity of their school.
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During the 2020 Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, they started researching how to start a class for the school. Coincidentally, the school district owns land behind the school building, so they drafted a proposal and submitted it to the Decatur district manager’s MSD. It included an 18-hole course design, logo, prizes, ideas on how to build the course, lesson plans to involve students, and ideas on how to involve the local community.
It was adopted and the falcon nest was born.
With the help of another teacher, Rachel Slagle, sponsorship letters were written and fundraising campaigns planned to raise the money to turn her vision into a reality. They worked with the vocational teachers / students from Decatur Central High School to do the course installation and the creation of the logo.
They also worked with local businesses to arrange signage, driving pads, baskets, washers, landscaping, etc. In addition, they dedicate holes on the course to local heroes.
Sullivan and Gammons plan to run tournaments, incorporate the sport into their curriculum year-round, and then on Field Day, students will demonstrate their skills in various event categories (e.g. longest drive, best form, best put, etc.).
Born out of the hobby of two men, this disc golf course becomes a place for the students to watch their own hard work as they build a hangout, learn a new sport, and create a place that will hold a community for years to come collect and share memories.
What is disc golf?
According to the Professional Disc Golf Association, disc golf is played similarly to golf, except that instead of the ball and clubs, players use a flying disc, the only thing required to play. The sport was formalized in the 1970s and shares with golf the goal of completing each hole with the fewest strokes (or in the case of disc golf, with the fewest throws).
A disc golf hole begins at a tee and ends at a target, the most common of which is a raised metal basket. As a player descends the fairway, he or she must take each successive throw from where the previous throw landed.
In a group game, the furthest player always throws first. Players should not be ahead of the away player. The trees, bushes and changes in the terrain in and around the fairways represent challenging obstacles for the golfer. When the “putt” lands in the basket, the hole is ready.
The grand opening of the Hawk’s Nest Disc Golf Course will take place on Saturday, July 24th at the Blue and Gold Academy of Decatur Township, 5650 Mann Road, Indianapolis. The opening ceremony takes place at 9 a.m., followed by the free clinic at 10 a.m. and the 18-hole tournament at 11:30 a.m.
There will be a free disc golf clinic open to the public of all ages. There will be an overview of the rules, as well as information on target selection, driving, approach shots and putting.
A tournament will take place after the clinic. The cost is $ 30 and includes a Hawk’s Nest memorial disk. The proceeds go to the Decatur Township Educational Foundation and for course improvements. Online registration only at https://www.discgolfscene.com/tournament/Hawks_Nest_DGC_Opening_Tournament_2021.