National Disc Golf Day Date in the current year: August 3, 2024

National Disc Golf Day The first Saturday of August is the perfect day to play a fun game called disc golf, since it is National Disc Golf Day. So call your friends, grab your frisbees, and have some fun together.

Disc golf, sometimes referred to as frisbee golf, is a sport where players throw a flying disc at a target. It was named so because the rules of the game are similar to golf: players throw a disc toward the “hole”, or target (a basket made of chains on a pole), making each subsequent throw from where the previous one landed. The goal is to reach each of the 9 or 18 holes on the course with the lowest number of throws. 

Disc golf was originally invented in Canada in the early 20th century. This version of the game was invented by Ronald Franklin Gibson and his elementary school friends from Bladworth, Saskatchewan. They drew circles on their school grounds and ther tin lids into them. The game they called Tin Lid Golf was forgotten as they inevitably grew apart.

Modern disc golf originated in the early 1960s, although it is unclear who was the first to come up with the idea of the game. There are records of the game being played in Houston, Texas, Augusta, Georgia, and Santa Barbara, California around the same time.

The person credited with inventing disc golf as we know it is “Steady” Ed Headrick, an American toy inventor dubbed as the Father of Disc Golf. He developed the modern frisbee while working for Wham-O and became enthusiastic about frisbee sports. Once his tenure at Wham-O was over, Headrick focused on the development of frisbee golf.

Together with his son Ken, Headrick formalized the rules of the sport, founded the Disc Golf Association in 1976, and developed the Disc Pole Hole (basket catch for disc golf) in 1977. However, it wasn’t Headrick who designed the modern golf disc. The person behind the invention was Dave Dunipace, the co-founder of Innova Discs.

Today, disc golf is played in about 40 countries across the world, although the country that has the most disc golf courses is, of course, the United States. It accounts for 75% of all disc golf courses in the world, followed by Finland (7%) and Canada (3%). Other countries where disc golf is popular enough include Sweden, Estonia, Germany, the UK, the Czech Republic, Norway, Japan, Denmark, Australia, France, Iceland, New Zealand, Switzerland, Austria, the Netherlands, South Korea, Spain, Poland, and Slovakia.

National Disc Golf Day was created by the Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) in 2016. The date of the first Saturday of August was chosen to commemorate the inaugural Rochester Flying Disc Open that was held in Rochester, New York on that day in 1974. Coincidentally, “Steady” Ed Headrick received a U.S. Patent for the Disc Golf Pole Hole in early August 1975.

How can you observe National Disc Golf Day? If you’ve never played the game, this is the perfect day to learn! And if you’re already a disc golfer, use the holiday to popularize the game: teach your friends to play, participate in a tournament or contest organized by the PGDA or another sports organization, or get involved with a community group that might be interested in learning about the sport. 

Regardless off how you choose to celebrate, don’t forget to take pictures and videos and share them on social media with the hashtag #NationalDiscGolfDay to spread the word about the holiday and the game.

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National Disc Golf Day, observances in the United States, disc golf, frisbee golf, Professional Disc Golf Association