Top News

Disc golf growing in popularity in Hants County thanks to new course in Windsor

Tony Wood, co-owner of the Spoke & Note on Water Street in Windsor, displays the typical equipment required to play disc golf. The store sells and rents the gear, with a full-day rental costing $5.
Tony Wood, co-owner of the Spoke & Note on Water Street in Windsor, displays the typical equipment required to play disc golf. The store sells and rents the gear, with a full-day rental costing $5. - Carole Morris-Underhill

WINDSOR, N.S. — A new golf course has opened in Windsor, but it's not for folks toting a ball and specialized clubs.

The course is for those armed with Frisbee-like discs.

Earlier this summer, the Clifton Estate Disc Golf Course opened on the grounds of the historic Haliburton House Museum property. Armed with a satchel carrying flying discs of varying sizes, avid disc golfers compete to see who can finish the course under par. It's a sport that's open to all skill levels and ages and doesn't require expensive equipment to get into.

“As far as the discs go, the discs are very inexpensive. They only cost about $20 per disc. Any player can certainly get away with playing with one or two discs for the rest of their life if that was desirable,” said Ben Smith, a strong competitor who carries between 20 and 30 discs when competing.

Tony Gallant can often be found at the Clifton Estate Disc Golf Course, which is located at the Haliburton House Museum property, in Windsor, on Tuesday evenings practicing his skills and helping get other people interested in the sport. - Carole Morris-Underhill
Tony Gallant can often be found at the Clifton Estate Disc Golf Course, which is located at the Haliburton House Museum property, in Windsor, on Tuesday evenings practicing his skills and helping get other people interested in the sport. - Carole Morris-Underhill

 

“That facet, the competitive player, only represents about five per cent of all disc golf. The vast majority of people are just going to buy a disc or buy a couple of discs and are going to go out with their kids on a Saturday afternoon or they’re going to play after work some nights,” said Smith.

“You’re looking at a very modest investment of less than $50 to play until you lose those discs,” he added.

The Windsor course is free to use, as is about 95 per cent of courses worldwide, Smith said in a phone interview.

“There’s 187 — although that number is probably over 200 — public courses in Canada. About 95 to 96 per cent of them are free,” said Smith.

“The game itself was created and made into a professional association in the 1970s. It slowly but surely made its way across North America and has been growing steadily in both popularity and player-base ever since,” said Smith.

“It really took off, so to speak, around the 2000s and is coming to fruition now with close to 50,000 courses world-wide.”

The Windsor location is the latest course to open in Nova Scotia, bringing the total in the province up to 10. The nearest disc golf locations are New Minas, Waterville and Hammonds Plains.


Did you know?

• Clifton Estate Disc Golf Course is located behind the Haliburton House Museum, 414 Clifton Ave., in Windsor. It doesn't cost anything to play at the disc golf course unless there is a tournament taking place and it's accessible all year round.

• A group meets at the Clifton Estate Disc Golf Course in Windsor on Tuesdays around 6:30 p.m. Skilled players and those interested in learning the ropes are both welcome to attend. There is no fee or pre-registration.

• Discs can be purchased at the Spoke & Note on Water Street in Windsor or, for $5, two discs and a satchel can be rented out between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

• Ben Smith, a founding member and past-president of the Maritime Disc Golf Association, is busy planning the 2018 Canadian Disc Golf Championships, which is being billed as the biggest disc golf event in Canadian history. The tournament will take place Sept. 14-16, 2018 in Prince Edward Island.


A sign has been installed behind Haliburton House Museum that shows the map of Clifton Estate Disc Golf Course. Tony Gallant, who is heavily involved with the sport, is eager to see more people come out to the Windsor landmark to try out the new course. - Carole Morris-Underhill
A sign has been installed behind Haliburton House Museum that shows the map of Clifton Estate Disc Golf Course. Tony Gallant, who is heavily involved with the sport, is eager to see more people come out to the Windsor landmark to try out the new course. - Carole Morris-Underhill

Tony Gallant, Tony Wood, and his sister, Adrienne Wood, were the driving forces behind getting Smith to help build the course in town.

“The game itself is fun all around. The thing that I think is really great about it is the accessibility. It's super affordable to get into — you essentially need a driver and putter disc,” said Tony Wood, the co-owner of the Spoke & Note in downtown Windsor.

The shop not only sells the equipment but also offers $5 all-day rentals to visitors looking to try the sport out.

“That's what I really like about the sport. It's super easy, not expensive, and it gets you outside.”

Wood said they have been renting discs out pretty well every day since the course opened.

“The really wild thing is how popular it has become already,” said Wood.

The grand opening was held in June.

Due to how accessible disc golf is, Smith said it appeals to a wide cross-section of people.

“Because the game is so inexpensive and it’s applicable to any age, any gender, and it’s available 12 months a year — and you can play it solo or with a bunch of friends — we find that you just never know what kind of subgroup is going to come up and get involved,” said Smith.

“At the root of this game, you’re simply throwing a disc and watching it fly,” he said, noting some players don't even keep score.

Smith, who was a founding member of the Maritime Disc Golf Association, said Windsor's location offers visitors a nice walk in a beautiful setting.

“If you play the Windsor course, there’s nine baskets but there’s 18 possible tee-pads. If you play all possible 18 holes in the layout, you’ll walk close to three kilometres and we’ve never had a person say they felt tired or felt (that it was) laborious to try to walk three kilometres. It just feels like a very pleasurable walk in the park.”

Disc golf enthusiast Tony Gallant showcases his skills at one of the tees at Haliburton House Museum. - Carole Morris-Underhill
Disc golf enthusiast Tony Gallant showcases his skills at one of the tees at Haliburton House Museum. - Carole Morris-Underhill

Go online

To learn more about disc golf, visit the Nova Scotia Disc Sports Society at www.discns.ca or the Maritime Disc Golf Association at http://mdga.ca.

Recent Stories