By Kierstin Flickinger
Staffwriter and Reporter
For over four years, Lauren Blum, the Assistant Director for Student Affairs, had been trying to get a disc golf course on the Penn State New Kensington campus. She began to take student leaders to a summer camp where they learned to play the fun and innovative game. “Our orientation leaders started asking me every year [to put in a disc golf course],” she said.
On Friday September 2nd, this ambition finally became a reality. As the New Kensington campus debuted the nine-hole disc golf course with a tournament. “Finally I was able to pull through funding and get approval from Jason [Bush] and Dr. Snider.”
Blum stated that prior to the tournament, roughly ten students would play disc golf nearly every day. Chad Navarro, a senior on campus, is one of these students. “I’ve put a lot of time into practicing for this. But I teamed up with friends who haven’t really played.”
In addition to students playing, community members have also been showing interest in the course as well. Dr. Snider, Chancellor of Penn State New Kensington, says that he hopes more interest will be shown, so that the campus can try to open up a full 18-hole course for students and community members alike to enjoy.
“It’s important to get out and support things that the students want. If this really takes off we want to consider creating the full course,” the Chancellor said.
Designing the course seemed to be one of the most difficult tasks, especially in reference to making sure that the students remained safe while playing with regards to traffic. However, the course was completed in time for the tournament, and the students and faculty showed up in support. Blum said that there were seven pre-registered teams and they anticipated 20 people to show up for the opening tournament.
Jason Bush, who works in the administration office as the Director of Business and Finance and Budget and Finance, was in charge of the other difficult task in opening the course, which was obtaining the funding to start it all. “Lauren [Blum] had come up with the idea a few years ago, and I thought that it would be a good use of our money.”
The tournament had two categories in which players could win: individual score and team score. The winner of the individual award was Nick Sabolovic (12). Sabolovic was also on the team that won, with fellow members Ben Lasko (12) and Vincent Xaio (12). Sabolovic had a score of 26, whereas the team had an overall score of 29. Despite many concerns about the windy weather on September 2nd, this clearly did not hinder those students who played regularly.
The disc golf course is able to be played during Athletic Center hours. Students can check out bags containing frisbees in the Athletic Center.
*Editor’s Note: This news report did not adequately explain that the funding for the disc golf course was reviewed and approved by the student facility fee committee. We apologize for any confusion caused by the absence of that detail.