Disc golf course opens at Gold Star Park

Funded through Creating Healthy Communities Grant

Jonathan Russell, 12, of Marietta, tosses a disc at one of the new disc golf cages at Gold Star Park in Marietta Monday. (Photo by Janelle Patterson)

Despite rain Monday a new recreational attraction opened in Marietta.

“This was my first time on the course but I had a lot of fun,” said Jonathan Russell, 12, of Marietta, after completing all nine holes.

Russell participated in a disc golf clinic held at Gold Star Park Monday as the new disc golf course opened to the public.

The course wraps around and through the park, over hills and into the woods at the back of the park.

“Just be careful on the eighth hole,” noted Russell before gearing up for the tournament held after the ribbon cutting. “You could slip down the hill if you’re not careful. But besides that, it’s really awesome.”

Russell learned to play with Leo, 10, and Sam Milazzo, 12, brothers from Vincent who go to school with Russell at Veritas Classical Academy.

“I think it’s a fun experience for anyone to try and is good for all levels,” noted Sam as he watched his brother finish up the course.

“And it’s kind of a cool competition,” added Leo.

The course was funded through $5,000 of the Creating Healthy Communities Grant administered through the Washington County Health Department.

“It’s almost a mile around the whole course, because you zig zag from spot to spot,” noted Sherry Ellem, coordinator of the program.

Councilwoman Cindy Oxender noted the dedication of multiple entities to bring about the course, including Veritas school volunteers cleaning up the park this past spring, city administration in planning additional features of the park, and the health department’s support in another recreational activity for citizens to enjoy.

“And the maintenance is already a part of the regularly scheduled mowing cycle for the parks,” she added.

But most importantly to Julian Powell, of Vienna, the course is a perfect entrance into the low-impact sport.

“There’s many disc golf courses throughout the area,” he said, noting he owns Appalachian Disc Golf, in Vienna. “But most of those are designed by intense disc golfers to be hard and they go through wooded areas. But here it’s family friendly and with nine holes, either you can keep your kids’ interest or they can play basketball while you make your way around the course.”

Sarah Arnold, communications director for the Washington County Public Library, also pointed out that medium-distance discs will be available to check out at the library to be used at the course, and others throughout the city.

“We’re adding these to what you can check out with a library card, too,” she said at the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

Powell taught the clinic held at the course Monday and was happy to explain the different disc sizes to newcomers.

“This is what this area needs,” he concluded. “This whole course was designed for practice and the family to really enjoy.”