, 2021-08-03 02:00:00,
Although the world’s first disc golf course is nestled in the Pasadena area, it was Emporia, Kansas, that offered Violet Main an eye-opening experience when it came to the sport.
While competing in the Professional Disc Golf Association’s Junior World Championships in early July, she was surrounded by stunning courses and some of the best disc golf talent that the world has to offer.
“It was almost too over the top,” said Main, a South Pasadena resident. “Most of these girls that I played with have been home-schooled their entire lives. They have stations in their backyards where they putt for 20 minutes, drive for 20 minutes for like two hours every single day. And I realized that disc golf is their life.”
Main’s training is less regimented but proved just as effective. She took third place in the competition, showing that she’s one of the premier amateur disc golf athletes worldwide.
The object of disc golf, whose scoring is similar to traditional golf, is to get a hard plastic disc to its target, a free-standing metal basket strewn with chains, in as few throws as possible.
Ed Headrick, a toy inventor who lived in South Pasadena, is referred to as the “Father of Disc Golf” because of his patents of the Frisbee in 1966 and the Disc Pole Hole in 1975. According to PDGA.com, the origin of the sport is unclear, but seems to have emerged in the mid-’60s as a recreational activity and was later included in the 1975 World Frisbee Championships.
That same year, Headrick built the first official disc golf course, Oak Grove Park, which is where Main practices today.
Although she also dedicates time to shot put as a member of South Pasadena High School’s track and field team, it’s Oak Grove that has become a sanctuary for Main. She first tried the sport in grade school, then took a few years off before beginning to take it seriously roughly four years ago. Ever since, she’s been going to the course as often as she can to throw, practice putting and just have fun.
As the COVID-19 pandemic forced restrictions upon nearly every area of her life, getting to the course became essential to Main’s mental health.
“I would just go to the course and spend time there,” the SPHS senior…
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