, 2021-05-18 02:00:00,
When Jay Dickerson was interviewing for his current position at Northwest College, he was asked what activities he’d like to be involved in on campus. Understandably nervous, the question almost stumped him.
“Disc golf was the only thing that came to my mind,” Dickerson reminisced while looking at two brand new baskets freshly installed outside his office in the Math and Science Building.
That was seven years ago, prior to his arrival in the Cowboy State. Now, thanks to his and other instructors’ lobbying for the sport, the college is building Powell’s only course. Eight holes were installed late last week and another four holes are waiting for parts.
After Dickerson was offered the position, the associate professor of biology wound up moving from the East Coast, where he had received his undergraduate degree at James Madison University and his Ph.D at Virginia Tech. Soon after his arrival, Mike Cuddy, associate professor of chemistry, and Mathew Osborne, assistant professor of biology, were hired on; they both are fans of the sport, too.
The threesome was forced to drive an hour or more to find permanent courses. So they pushed for the funds, and last year the NWC Student Senate approved $5,000 to purchase all the poles, baskets and equipment needed.
“I wasn’t going to be able to do it by myself,” Dickerson said of the support he received from his coworkers and the students and staff who have helped get the project off the ground.
It’s one of several new courses in the area, including a nine-hole course in Thermopolis built in 2019 and a series of courses in Greybull, where an 18-hole course was upgraded last year and where organizers will soon have 45 holes to play. There are now 40 courses in Wyoming, but this is the only course in Park County. The college previously had a course, but the sport wasn’t as popular at the time and the baskets were eventually removed.
Disc golf isn’t a new sport; it just hasn’t gripped northwest Wyoming as quickly as it has the rest of the nation.
“Steady” Ed Headrick is considered the Father of Disc Golf, according to the Professional Disc Golf Association. He formed the first association in 1976 and developed and patented the Disc Golf Pole Hole — the foundation for modern baskets — in 1977.
Now you can find coverage of professional disc golf broadcasts on ESPN or YouTube and the top players make tens of thousands of dollars…
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