Those subtle autumn breezes, cooler temps and trees aflame in fall colors are calling your name. It's a great time to be outdoors in Tulsa, so what do we do now?
The weather is too chilly for swimming or tanning in the backyard. Our swimsuits are tucked neatly back into the closet for next May.
Tulsa, with its naturally variable weather and winds, is considered a Mecca for disc golf. Green Country disc golf professionals can learn to develop strategies for throwing discs in extreme heat and cold, rain and winds from every slant and direction.
Some professionals have even moved to Green Country to further their disc golf careers.
When asked about Tulsa's disc golf Mecca status, Chandler Park Disc Golf Tournament Director Scott Schumacher said, "What can I say? I know of no other city in the nation that has so many courses concentrated in such a small travel area.
"Novice to pro-level, we've got it," Schumacher continued. "That's why we consider it to be the 'Mecca' of disc golf because it allows those visiting from out-of-town a super-sized variety of places to play. And since they would be hard-pressed to play them all in one weekend, they will make the pilgrimage back for more."
Oklahoma's Professional Disc Golf Association Statewide Coordinator, Michael Treat, said Tulsa's become a hotbed for frolf action because of "a synergy" that's kept disc golf alive in Green Country since the late 1970s.
"I really owe it all our predecessors," Treat said. "Riverside [River Parks course] was the first course in Tulsa in 1979 and by 1981 we had five permanent courses here. Tulsa was the first city in the entire country to have five courses."
Treat also said that because disc golf is cheap to play and appeals to all ages and skill levels, "whether it's just a family out for fun or someone pursuing it a little more seriously."
The top professionals continue to play the sport out of love for the game and "the flight of the disc," said Treat, who's been playing disc golf for six years.
"Watching that thing fly after you've released it really gets down to the core of the sport," he said.
Try out Frisbee golf, or frolf, at one of Tulsa's several well-kept, established frolf courses in town. The courses range in difficulty and terrain, from the easy beginner's course in River Parks to the challenging 18 "holes" -- more like metal baskets or chain-link nets -- in Mohawk Park.
Whatever your skill level, frolf is a great way to get outside with a few friends and throw around some Frisbees, or discs, at one of Tulsa's parks.
If you're looking for more like-minded frolfers, look into the events and team listings offered through Tulsa Disc Sports Association at tulsadiscsports.org.
Want to see some of the best professional disc golfers in the world? They'll be gathering in Tulsa Oct. 29 and 30 for an annual Oklahoma Open.
The two-day showcase tournament will feature both A-Tier (the top pros) and B-Tier (recreational and juniors) players vying for a large cash purse. "If a player wants to see how they rate against the best or just wants to see some of the best players both locally and nationally, this is the one to come to," Schumacher said.
Treat, also a board administrator for the Tulsa Disc Sports Association, has directed the Oklahoma Open for the past three years. "People from literally all over the country, the top touring professionals, will be coming out," Treat said.
About 100 professionals will be vying for the cash prizes while another 60 or 70 will compete for discs and equipment prizes, Treat said.
Throughout the summer months, mini-tournaments are held all over T-Town. Big portions of the five-dollar entry fees are poured right back into the upkeep for existing courses and savings for new courses, Treat said.
T-Town has a total of 15 disc golf courses, and below we offer a brief tour of 7 of the very best, with insight and info included from Tulsa Disc Sports Association:
Tee-off: 41st St. and Riverside Dr.
Probably the most high-profile course in town, these 18 holes are fun for beginning frolfers and more experienced disc golfers alike. Originally constructed in 1979, this pretty course has had a facelift in recent years.
Tee-off: 71st St. and Memorial Dr.
This well-maintained course was designed in 1980. These 18 holes aren't too difficult for most amateur frolfers.
Tee-off: 11300 S. Garnett Rd.
This course, nestled in woodsy Haikey Creek Park, is picturesque and blends wide open holes with more challenging ones.
Tee-off: 91st St. between Yale Ave. and Sheridan Rd.
This suburban 18-hole course in South Tulsa offers contoured areas, wooded spots, some rough terrain and water for frolfers seeking a more challenging adventure. Watch out for possible poison ivy!
Tee-off: 5400 S. Olympia Ave.
This smaller course in west Tulsa was built in 2004. The course is closed during the summer, and is only open Monday through Friday.
Tee-off: West Tulsa, off W. 21st St.
This well-kept course is in the southeast corner of Chandler Park on the west bank of the Arkansas River.
Tee-off: In Mohawk Park next to Tulsa Zoo
The 8-hole course is in a heavily-wooded area of Mohawk Park. It's a favorite of Oklahoma's top disc golfer, Devan Owens, who said it has the toughest and most challenging holes around.
Time To Tee-Off
Are you still sitting down reading this? Well, get up and get going already! Grab some discs and a few buds, and head out to perfect your game before winter settles in.
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