27.3 C
Niagara Falls
Wednesday, May 22, 2024
Pros and amateurs toss off in NOTL disc golf tourney
Jake Kerpel from Thorold concentrates on his expert disc toss during Saturday's Holiday Buster Bonanza disc golf tournament. Julia Sacco

Apparently, nothing brings a community together like disc golf. 

After a disc golf course was built outside the Niagara-on-the-Lake Community Centre in July, fanatic Andrea Michaud knew it was going to be a hit.

“It gathered way more traffic and was way more popular than (the town) thought it would be,” she said.

Michaud knows first-hand how passionate disc golfers are, which is why she decided to host the Holiday Buster Bonanza last Saturday. 

Players of all skill levels from around Ontario braved the cold in the name of sporty fun. 

Professional disc golfer Steven Soucie came all the way from St. Thomas, Ont., to play a few games and reconnect with friends.

Soucie started playing disc golf in the early 1990s and has been at it ever since, making friends and memories along the way.

“Disc golf has taken me all over North America,. I’ve played against some of the world’s best players,” he said.

Soucie even married his wife at the International Disc Golf Centre in Georgia. 

Joe McCormick of Port Colborne said it was great to have one of his inspirations visit Niagara.

“If it wasn’t for (Soucie) and my brother, I probably wouldn’t even know what disc golf is,” McCormick said. 

Many more amateurs and pros were among those signed up for the tournament, with a big draw being the low entry fee and a chance to win cash prizes.

“A cheap tournament is around $60,” said Michaud, so the admission fee of $6 for pros and $11 for amateurs was unbeatable.

The event was also unique as it allowed players of different divisions and genders to play together on the same card.

“There’s a lot of couples I know who love to play the game together but can’t compete together,” said Michaud.

“I wanted to do things differently.”

She thanked the tourney sponsors, including Picard’s Peanuts, as well as the town, particularly those in the permit office who were “better than any city (she’d) ever worked with.”

“Picard’s is even having their staff come out and try playing disc golf when the weather gets warmer,” she said.

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