Disc Golf is One of the Nation’s Fastest Growing Sports - County’s Investment Part of Larger Effort to Increase Tourism(CHARLESTON, NY) – Montgomery County Executive Matthew Ossenfort hadn’t heardof disc golf when a local enthusiast of the sport first approached him in late 2019,pitching his vision of building an 18-hole disc golf course through the mature pine andhardwood trees that make up the Thomas H. Burbine Memorial Forest. Now, only a fewshort years later, the course has become a significant draw for the community, attractingdisc golfers from across New York State and beyond.
“Disc golf’s popularity has gone through the roof, and Montgomery County is a perfectplace to capitalize on the newfound success of the game,” said County ExecutiveOssenfort.
In an effort to support the volunteer-operated course, County Executive Ossenfortjoined disc golfers today to cut the ribbon and celebrate nearly $100,000 in upgrades tothe Burbine Forest DGC.
“The Burbine Forest has long been an underutilized resource for our county, and thedisc golf course has really turned it into a leading attraction. I hear all the time frompeople who say the parking is always overflowing, and more and more it’s cars from outof state. That’s great news for us! We want to create a welcoming atmosphere for discgolfers, so they’re encouraged to explore other parts of our county,” Ossenfort added.“I’m confident these investments will make the course even more popular.”
Following approval by the Montgomery County Legislature, the County signed acontract to construct a larger parking lot and build specially designed restrooms, as wellas make additional improvements to the course.
Construction of a parking lot had become a priority because golfers currently park alongthe side of Corbin Hill Road, which can become congested during popular tournaments.The parking lot was also needed because the course is being utilized year-round, and thecurrent system creates challenges for golfers looking to play Burbine during the wintermonths when snow blocks the current parking area.
The course’s semi-remote setting also made the addition of restroom facilities a priority.The new facilities will utilize specially-designed toilets which don’t require additionalinvestment to establish running water at the forest.
“Montgomery County has been extremely supportive of the course since I initiallypitched the idea. Improving the parking and adding bathrooms will be big selling pointsfor the course going forward, not only for tournaments but for anyone coming to play.For a course that is primarily maintained by volunteers, support like this is greatlyappreciated,” said Mark Hay, the course’s designer and volunteer manager.
The course improvements come just a few weeks before Montgomery County welcomescompetitors to “The Blues at Burbine” on October 22, 2022. The tournament is heldannually to coincide with the anniversary of the opening of the course. Last year’stournament attracted amateur and professional disc golfers from across the CapitalDistrict and beyond.
Disc golf has seen tremendous growth in just a few short years. According to the popularapp UDisc, more than 1.1 million people used the scoring app in 2021, logging morethan 17 million rounds - a nearly 50 percent increase over 2020.
The Burbine Forest Disc Golf Course is a two-mile long 18-hole course, which includesan open-water carry hole and other challenging holes. Since opening to competition inOctober 2020, the course has generated a strong following on both Facebook and UDisc,and received over 290 reviews.