Disc golf dreams

Andrew Howard, Zac Lytle, Michael Dilger, Gary Buckner and Nate Derr are members of the Oak Cliff Disc Golf Club.

Andrew Howard, Zac Lytle, Michael Dilger, Gary Buckner and Nate Derr are members of the Oak Cliff Disc Golf Club. Photo by Can Türkyilmaz

Zac Lytle thinks Oak Cliff could use a little more disc golf. He likes the sport, in which players toss discs — or Frisbees — into baskets. And though he doesn’t think he’s very good at it, he is spearheading an effort to build a disc golf course in our neighborhood. It started in September when Lytle founded the Oak Cliff Disc Golf Club. In order to play, members often trek to a course in Grand Prairie. “It’s a small group of younger people with varied backgrounds who like outdoor activities,” Lytle says. “All the members have different levels of ability.” Among them is Nate Derr, a former professional disc golfer. Like many sports, disc golf can be played for kicks or for competition. It closely mirrors golf: You choose from a putting disc, driving disc, mid-range disc and others depending on your proximity to the “hole,” or basket. You stand on a tee pad, which is typically a concrete square from where you toss. The fewer throws you make on a 9- or 18-hole course, the better your score. Courses are often built in existing parks, and Lytle hopes an Oak Cliff course would be completed by June. Right now he is focused on securing space in a park and gaining support. Dallas Park Board District 3 representative Michael Reagan, who lives near Lytle, and District 3 Councilman Scott Griggs have both expressed support for the course, according to Lytle. Two potential locations are Founder’s Park and a green space in Elmwood. “A lot of people are afraid it will change the park, but really there’s no significant change,” Lytle says. “I think it’s important for parks to be used, and parks that aren’t used have problems.” Early next year, Lytle plans to hold a fundraising event. He expects the cost of building a course would be $5,000-$10,000 to install the tee pads, signs, maps and baskets. He also hopes to start a petition to convince the city of neighborhood support. “It’s an opportunity to be outside and be active. It’s a free social activity,” Lytle says of disc golf. “It’s something that pretty much anyone can enjoy.” He has a background in city planning and is one of the founders and now president of Bike Friendly Oak Cliff. Though he has lived in Oak Cliff only about five years, he is invested in the neighborhood. “That’s sort of what I enjoy about Dallas, is making it a better city,” Lytle says.

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