, 2022-10-30 17:26:00,
Oct. 30—Earlier this year, the Dalton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) installed two practice disc golf baskets outside its visitor information center that is in the old freight depot at 305 S. Depot St., just off Morris Street.
“We are trying to share with our visitors things made in Dalton and Georgia grown,” said Margaret Thigpen, director of tourism for Dalton and Whitfield County, who directs the CVB and the Dalton Convention Center.
Prodigy Disc, a Whitfield County-based manufacturer of disc golf equipment, donated one of the baskets and sold the CVB the other.
“They (the practice baskets) are getting a lot of use,” said Thigpen. “They are not only being used by our visitors, but by our locals, especially those living in the Belk building.”
“We took that idea and expanded it,” Thigpen said. “We thought it would be great to have something throughout downtown. We got with the DDDA (Downtown Dalton Development Authority), Prodigy, the Dalton Parks and Recreation Department and Whitfield County. Voila, we now have a par 2 disc golf course downtown.”
The course, which is open for play, has eight baskets in four locations: the Burr Performing Arts Park, Dalton Green, the county-owned greenspace across from the courthouse and the freight depot. Discs will be for sale at the freight depot.
“To our knowledge, this is the only permanent downtown disc golf course in the nation,” said DDDA Executive Director Candace Eaton.
“I think it’s a huge deal because it will bring a different market downtown,” Eaton said in a press release from the city. “As they walk the course they’ll see local businesses downtown or stop and eat lunch or dinner, or maybe grab a beer or shop.”
“From a tourism standpoint, it absolutely opens our downtown for visitors to have something more to do, to keep them there a little longer,” Thigpen said in the press release. “For all of our tournaments and events coming into our community, just to have something else for the visitors to do when they’re waiting for their next game or their next event, that’s a great addition.”
The Greater Dalton area has several full-sized disc golf courses.
The Whitfield County Parks and Recreation Department’s Westside Park Disc Golf Course was voted one of the top four courses in the United States in 2020 by the readers of Connect Magazine. There are also courses at Edwards Park in Varnell and Heritage Point Park in Dalton.
Thigpen said it took about six weeks between the idea for the…
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