Grand opening of disc golf course to
benefit local Habitat for Humanity projects
Tuesday, June 10, 2014 3:45 AM
Fling it for Habitat.
Hank Friederichs, Andy Friederichs and Brian Lee are pleased to have been part of the installation process for the disc golf course now available in Mill Creek Park in Chatfield. GRETCHEN MENSINK LOVEJOY/CHATFIELD NEWS
Of course you want to...
"We wanted to have a grand opening for the course sometime this spring, and I'm also in the Habitat for Humanity group, so we decided to combine the grand opening with a fundraiser for Habitat," explained Brian Lee, speaking of the new disc golf course at Mill Creek Park in Chatfield, site of the course's grand opening and a Habitat fundraiser this Saturday, June 14.
Members of the community, such as Andy Friederichs, had been considering the possibility of building a disc golf course after traveling to other communities to play. They soon realized it made more sense to invest in their own community, rather than spending money on gas to get to neighboring towns' courses.
The courses include a collection of baskets on poles stationed throughout the park that are meant to catch specialized Frisbees. More specifically, the discs used in this golf game come in three styles - appointed with the same descriptions as golf clubs.
Friederichs' sons, Hank and Harvey, had also been approached by friends in school who wanted to know if a course could be built in Chatfield.
Friederich stated the resulting disc golf course became a reality due to the support the community gave it. "This was a community project," he added. "We brought it to the city council about a year or a year and a half ago during the winter because it's different, it's free to play, and it's big on college campuses because it's free."
The new course in Chatfield is a nine-hole course, with medium difficulty because the organizers tried to design the course for all members of families to use so that it can become a family course.
The organizers ultimately left the course's formal design to disc golf experts Fairway Flyers so that the baskets are placed where they need to be for good competition, as they'd first attempted to plot out the course but determined that some help was in order.
As soon as it was finished late last fall, families and youth were out flinging discs at the baskets, enjoying the beautiful scenery of Chatfield's valley.
Friederichs noted, "There's been great response from the community. Kids are using it a lot - Hank and Harvey are out here at least twice a week."
Friederichs and Lee expressed their appreciation to the Hiawatha Snow Seekers, People's Cooperative, People's Operative Roundup, the Chatfield Community Foundation, Brian Lee Construction, Hammell Equipment, Adrenaline Fundraising, the Chatfield Fire Department, the Chatfield Booster Club, the Molly & Jake Fund, Manahan Machine, Set in Stone Landscaping, Eyota Ready-Mix, Terry Bradt, Jared Goldsmith, Kevin Bradt, Ty Bance, Brandon Hammell, Troy McDonald, Hank Friederichs and Harvey Friederichs for the work done to install the baskets.
They anticipate people getting outdoors for the Habitat for Humanity disc golf and beanbag tournament this Saturday.
Lee and fellow Habitat group member Pam Thieke hope that the rain-or-shine, cash-prize-for-the-top-three tournament draws many people.
Lee commented, "It gets people outdoors, and we'll have disc golf, beanbags and a food stand."
Thieke added, "This is the grand opening for the disc golf course, but it's also Habitat's fundraiser so that we can help someone in Chatfield fix their home. We're looking to raise more funds - we did that at our rummage sale in January - and to find someone to be the first recipient of the A Brush with Kindness project."
Thieke explained that the recipient of the work done by the Habitat volunteers must own a home and apply for assistance, knowing that an investment or contribution must be made from their own resources as well. A Brush With Kindness project can be help with painting, minor repairs or help constructing an accessible ramp or something else that can make all the difference for a homeowner.
She added that the Habitat volunteers also have a playhouse they intend to raffle off during the Chatfield High School homecoming game next fall, with tickets available all summer.
With that said, Lee and Thieke encouraged disc golfers and beanbaggers to first come to the tournament and do one thing . . . fling it.
The Chatfield Disc Golf and Habitat for Humanity Disc Golf and Beanbag Tournament is set for this Saturday, June 14, at Mill Creek Park. Registration begins at 2 p.m. and the tournaments, at 3 p.m. Cost is $20 per beanbag team and $10 per person for disc golf. For more information, contact Brian Lee at (507) 951-2389 or Julie Young at (507) 259-3378.