Possible Carlisle course

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Postby ghstinshll » Wed Nov 12, 2008 11:47 am

Steve, it may have... In post mortem that is the consensus among the designers and volunteers that put in the course. There was talk about 9, talk about 'things', and that's the way it wound up. Courses can, and will change over time.


Carlisle will be 9, there's no room for anything else. There's no question about the space in this case.
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Postby irban » Wed Nov 12, 2008 12:11 pm

Is it big enough for 9?
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Postby Single L » Wed Nov 12, 2008 12:19 pm

ghstinshll wrote:Carlisle will be 9, there's no room for anything else. There's no question about the space in this case.
irban wrote:Is it big enough for 9?

Doesn't look like it (assuming this is the North Park, only park on north side of town). Just by the aerial it looks to be set up great for current uses, but no room for DG.
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Postby Sprague » Wed Nov 12, 2008 12:23 pm

Questionable - I grew up in Carlisle going to that park since I was little. It's little too.

I would recommend a very nice pitch and putt that is designed so that higher level players could play 1 to 2 3 to 4 and so on creating a challenging experience while keeping it what it should be...recreational.

PLEASE PLEASE respect other park users in the layout, and remember there is nothing wrong with a practice park...3-5 baskets spread out 100-200ft apart.
Isn't that what Ankeny is?

We just got a course installed at Butterworth Park, and in my opinion it's too much golf for the land available. Lot's of blind holes that could interfere with other park users and flow issues (it's a tricky property to put advanced level holes in and that's what happened - still a nice park - just a bit cramped). Carroll, Ia has a very nice pitch and putt 9 hole that I always stop to play...it's fun and easy!
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Postby Clue » Wed Nov 12, 2008 1:25 pm

The problem arises when inexperienced hacks arrogantly put themselves in charge of something they have no experience or expertise in. I've also been to the park in Carlisle and I was going to suggest 6 at most. As with anything, less is more.

It's a miracle that nobody has been sued (that I know of) for unsafe designs. Wildflower is a lawsuit waiting to happen. Ultimately the park/city will be liable because they were the ones that didn't get any sort of certified expert to assist in the project. Shawn Sinclair has brought up the argument that the basket manufacturers are doing a disservice for shipping baskets to anyone that orders them. All disc businesses are so worried about the quick buck that they do not do the right thing for the sport.

I'm not advocating that nobody in Norwalk be involved. I think the grass roots support is essential to the success of a course/park. I'm just saying at some point you have to get some advice from somebody who knows what they are doing.

I get a lot of credit for Pickard, but I needed help. Thankfully we brought in John Houck to look at the courses right before worlds. He made hole 15 much better. Steve Nixt was working on the hole 14 bridge and suggested pushing through to the existing green. The pin was originally going to be at the bottom just across the creek. Gator solved the whole puzzle by suggesting the current pin on 18. It would've been pretty good, but it is WAY better because of 3 outside suggestions. Norwalk could've been the same way, and it's a shame that it isn't because you guys were too proud to ask for help.
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Postby Single L » Wed Nov 12, 2008 1:49 pm

Clue wrote:Ultimately the park/city will be liable because they were the ones that didn't get any sort of certified expert to assist in the project. Shawn Sinclair has brought up the argument that the basket manufacturers are doing a disservice for shipping baskets to anyone that orders them. All disc businesses are so worried about the quick buck that they do not do the right thing for the sport.

I agree 100% that a knowledgeable person be involved with course design, but I disagree that a certified expert needs to be involved. I would guess about 70% of the courses in Iowa a grass roots and designed by newbies or self proclaimed experienced hacks, some of these courses show the lack of experience in design and some are good and a few are great. Look at Wildcat, it's a great course designed and installed by a bunch of locals. Yeah the course could be tweaked here and there but what course couldn't be. The crew at Wildcat on the other hand a bunch of experienced golfers who know the game. Bottom line an experience player should always be involved in course design, IMO, not necessarily a certified expert.
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Postby ghstinshll » Wed Nov 12, 2008 2:30 pm

Holy cow, nothing like making a person want to walk from a project... Norwalk did have someone from the club walk it. Could someone else have given a 4th opinion? Yes.

Anyway - I go back to my initial post. Anyone thinks they can do better, then by all means. Now, what makes a good course designer? A pro player? Should it be that exclusive? Wait, most of you are out of the equation then. Experienced person seems like a valid statement. A person who has done, and made mistakes & learned from them is far better than a higher caliber player who simply thinks they know better. A person who has played a high number of courses? As a helper, and major contributor to Norwalk, I can say that lessons were learned. I'm not into this for glory, but for furthering the sport. I'm no pro player, but have played quite a number of courses around the country & have a practical approach to many things in life. Do it, think about it, revise it, consider others, and eventually come up with a good product. This course will add players from our metro that can't handle PK or EW. , that's all it's going to do. 9 holes, pitch n putt, have a nice day & move on. Also, that satellite image actually is deceptive. I had used it to draw in a initial reaction to the park, and it turned up not being practical. Should I post the word docs w/ that image & arrows drawn? Probably not. Instead I think I'll take offers for unbiased help from those I know & trust the opinions of.

If by ANY chance, anyone feels that this was a step in the wrong direction, let me know. If anyone else wants to champion this, let me know as well. I just simply wanted to use my relationship w/ the city (while a weak one) to feel them out & make a handoff if necessary.


As Sprague said, this will wind up a pitch & putt. Hell, Norwalk is too, but Carlisle will wind up being more of one. It can fit 9, but nothing measures very long. For a town like Carlisle, it does good because their local player caliber will be lower for the most part. There is camping space, and other areas that won't lend well for longer holes, so it'll be 9 shorter holes. Even if the camping wasn't there, it'd still not bode well for longer holes because of the way the road divides the park up.

Now, once I have this first meeting under way, then I may call in an expert to help confirm the design - but with the lessons learned in Norwalk I think that it won't be necessary. However, I still will for thoroughness' sake.

I didn't get to where I am in life by assuming I was a good network engineer... I've begun, studied, learned, listened to mentors, and built a body of work over time. My involvement in Carlisle is an exercise in the same practices. For those of you interested in what I'm doing so that you can add value to the project, please PM me and I'll go over it with you.
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Postby 10up » Wed Nov 12, 2008 2:45 pm

You said "Anybody that can do it better can step up" but the problem is nobody wants to step up because it shouldn't be done. I really do hope I'm making you feel like you should walk from the project because it's selfish, short-sighted, and pointless.
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Postby ghstinshll » Wed Nov 12, 2008 2:48 pm

Why shouldn't it be done? Short-sighted? I know why you relate to pointless so well...
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Postby Cydisc » Wed Nov 12, 2008 4:06 pm

It's not many times I've been approached about designing a course for someone who's had the money at their disposal to do it. But two of those times I've told them it was a bad idea. Sometimes, it's just not a good idea.
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Postby ghstinshll » Wed Nov 12, 2008 4:11 pm

Ok, let's turn this into a learning opportunity. Care to share those cities, and why it wouldn't work? Are you of the mindset that if the space is X size, it's simply not worth it? What were your reasons fro saying so?
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Postby irban » Wed Nov 12, 2008 4:30 pm

I for one was impressed by the way the Norwalk guys just went in and did it, in a short period of time. Particularly in light of the debacle at Greenwood.

However second and third experienced opinions can make a lot of difference, and are well worth the time. I think there has been a lot of ineffectual use of resources in disc golf course design and implementation because of lack of understanding of the game.

Some people think they are more experienced than they are, and sometimes even experienced people make stupid decisions. But you have to start somewhere.

I am not pointing fingers, because I have not seen Norwalk, but I agree some parks are not well suited at all for disc golf. I don't really like 9 holers and 6 sounds like death to me.

If you really want to spark some interest, and there is not an alternative park, maybe get creative. Set up 3 baskets with 2 or 3 separate tees per basket. Put a map showing the progression of holes on a sign and let them live it up while learning to play. Then in 6 months, when they want something more, they can travel to Ewing or whatever and really get going.
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Postby ghstinshll » Wed Nov 12, 2008 4:36 pm

Hey, thanks Irban.

6-9 shouldn't be death to a beginner in my eyes. setting up 3 baskets would work in a relatively open space w/ multiple angles to baskets, but in this park there is a flow around the perimeter. It ought to work. Carlisle has also mentioned an alternative site, but I am unaware of its location so far. This board meeting I'm going to prepare a presentation w/ 3 layouts, 9 #1, 9 #2, and 6... I'll make sure that I know where the alternative site is, and will look @ that site for their next meeting.

Good call though.
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Postby Cydisc » Wed Nov 12, 2008 4:39 pm

1) The recreation coordinator for AIB, Carlos Kirby, inquired about building a course on their campus. I would have made a consulting fee for the design. If you've been on their campus you'll understand it's nothing but buildings, sidewalks and parking lots. I could have done it, but it would have meant broken windows and injuries to pedestrians. I passed.

2) A retired farmer in Dallas County, south of Adel, wanted to build a pay-to-play course on his land. I would have made a considerable consulting fee. At 60+ acres it was plenty of land. Unfortunately, it was 60 acres of flat corn field with a little bit of timber way out in the back. I told him I could design it but it would take a lot of $ and time to make it a course equal to the courses people can play in the DSM metro for free. Weighing that, he decided to pass on the idea, which was smart.

It's not just a matter of 'X' size. There are other factors to consider for a course to be successful. Is there a potential safety issue? Is there a potential annoyance issue? Does the land have the right character to make the course fun and interesting to play?
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Postby ghstinshll » Wed Nov 12, 2008 4:43 pm

Excellent calls in both cases. Pay to play? LOL Corn fields turned into course? I agree.

This park's trees have nice character, there is some timber to have to deal with, and a couple tricky holes regardless of length. I think it has something to make for an enjoyable stop on your way through the area, or something nice for the beginners that will wind up playing there.
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