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Stafford County was excited to host the 2021 Disc Golf Stafford Invitational this past weekend on February 6th and 7th. This two-day tournament put on by the Stafford Disc Golf Club brought 161 players with 70 percent traveling from outside of the Stafford region, including Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Washington D.C., and one player from Japan.

The tournament was hosted at Stafford’s Curtis Park Disc Golf Course and, for the first time ever, the Gauntlet Golf Club. The Gauntlet Golf Club created a hybrid pop-up course in support of the tournament and created a new partnership with the Stafford Disc Golf Club.

“My team and I believe strongly that our place in this community is to give the residents of Stafford County and its guests a reason to go outside and safely recreate,” stated Mike Byrd, New Direction Golf Management President for The Gauntlet Golf Club. “Sometimes it requires outside the box thinking; disc golf is different for us, but we love it!”

The Stafford Disc Golf Club was established in 2020 and is a Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) affiliate club. There are currently 98 members who play at courses across the Stafford Region. As a new sport’s organization in Stafford, their initiatives include bringing new tournaments to the community, maintaining and upkeep of current courses, and to increase membership. For more information and how to get involved in the Stafford Disc Golf Club, visit their club Facebook page here.

“Disc Golf is currently going through a period of unforeseen growth, and America is taking notice,” stated Stephen Miller, President of the Stafford Disc Golf Club. “We hope to bring new opportunities like this in the future.”

For those not familiar with the sport, disc golf is played much like traditional golf. Instead of a ball and clubs, players use flying discs that are similar to frisbees. Instead of hitting a ball into a hole, a disc is thrown into a specifically-designed basket. The object of the game is to complete the course in the fewest number of throws. The rules are similar to golf and typical courses are nine or eighteen holes.

Disc Golf has gained recreational popularity during the Coronavirus Pandemic as you can be outdoors and socially distance, yet find a great way to get out and exercise. Stafford has two-disc golf courses: Curtis Park and John Lee Pratt Park.

“We were excited to see the partnership between the Gauntlet Golf Club and the Stafford Disc Golf Club bring new people to our community and see all the great things that Stafford has to offer,” stated Lisa Logan, Tourism Program Manager for Stafford County. “This is a great addition to our expanding Sports Tourism portfolio. Sports Tourism is a primary initiative for Stafford as we have seen tremendous growth since 2016.”