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Disc Golf Pro Tour is Back! Here’s What You Need to Know

Disc Golf Pro Tour is Back! Here’s What You Need to Know

Some much-needed good news came to the Disc Golf community today when Disc Golf Pro Tour (DGPT) made the big announcement that they will return to Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) Elite Series sanctioned play this June. The Tour came to a grinding halt on March 13, 2020, in the middle of the Waco Annual Charity Open in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Disc Golf Pro Tour’s announcement came on the same day as the PDGA update that 23 states and 11 countries are now available for PDGA sanctioning. While we’re starting to see sports and other businesses open up again, COVID-19 is still a major concern and both the PDGA and the DGPT have presented detailed plans outlining new policies and best practices to keep players and staff safe during events. 


The Disc Golf Pro Tour will restart in the Midwest in Emporia, KS, with a brand new event — The Dynamic Discs Open on June 26-28. The San Francisco Open and Portland Open have both been canceled in order to stay in alignment with local government guidelines. The Portland Open will be replaced by another new event — the Preserve Championship in Clearwater, MN on July 3-5. The Jonesboro Open has been rescheduled to Oct 1-3. With these changes, the DGPT will continue to have an Elite Series consisting of 11 events, as originally planned. The Tour also plans on keeping 7 of 9 original Silver Series events for a schedule of 18 total events in 2020. 


To protect the safety of players, staff, and volunteers, the DGPT has outlined a detailed three-phased approach to resuming play. When the Tour resumes in June with Phase 1, there will be strict precautions in place. The Phase 1 guidelines include:

  • Spectator-free events
  • No caddies
  • Sanitization of common surfaces and hand sanitizer available during play
  • Enforcement of social distancing measures, requiring all players, staff, and media to stay at least 6 feet away from each other at all times 
  • Group sizes will be limited to three
  • Field sizes will be reduced for speed of play and to allow for better social distancing

The DGPT will also provide optional COVID-19 testing for all players. If any player shows possible symptoms of COVID-19 or has come into contact with someone who has tested positive, testing and a negative result will be required in order to participate in the event. 


Once state and local governments declare that it’s safe for gatherings of 50 or more people, Phase 2 of the DGPT safety procedures will go into effect. During Phase 2, limited spectators will be allowed and players will be grouped into foursomes. Testing, social distancing, and sanitization procedures established in Phase 1 will continue in Phase 2. 


While it will be quite different than what we’ve seen in past years, we’re unbelievably excited to see the Tour return. As a DGPT partner and with several members of our Savage Squad participating, we’re unbelievably excited about this news and for the future of Disc Golf. We can’t wait to follow the coverage and cheer everyone on while social distancing in our homes.

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A Phase of College Ultimate May Be Over, But We’re Ready to Focus on What’s Ahead

A Phase of College Ultimate May Be Over, But We’re Ready to Focus on What’s Ahead

In the four years I’ve been attending the High Tide Ultimate Tournament as a Savage employee, I’ve seen a lot of crazy things happen — but 2020 is the year I know I’ll always remember. The spread of COVID-19 ended this year’s tournament two weeks early, and most of us also recognized it could mean the end of the college season as well. For many seniors, it was a heartbreaking moment. 

There was a distinct shift at the tournament among players and staff as we all began to process what was about to happen. There was a deep feeling of mourning as news spread that not only was the tournament ending, but schools were closing their doors for the foreseeable future, effectively ending the college Ultimate season.

It’s natural for players to obsess over what didn’t happen, or what could’ve been. I know I’ve struggled with this myself. For some players, it may be the last time they see some of their seniors for a long time. For some seniors, it’s the last time they’ll be playing with some of their teammates. 

But this is what I keep thinking about, and why I’m grateful that I was at High Tide at this moment in time: Witnessing the love players have not only for each other, but also for their opponents at this event, has been life-changing. This truly is a special sport we play. From seeing teams treat a fun Spring Break tournament like it was their last Nationals run, to crying with new players on my old college team, High Tide 2020 was unforgettable. 

It’s painful to think about, but we ought to stay positive, keeping this in mind: Our family of Ultimate players may just be one of the most tight-knit sports communities in the world. I — and the rest of the Savage team — love to come to Myrtle Beach not just to interact with you all and see you play some of the wackiest “games” of ultimate possible, but to be reminded of how much we love this sport ourselves. 

Seniors, addressing you all directly for a moment, we want to offer our sympathy for the abrupt end to some of your seasons. While this is the end of one chapter, we can assure you there’s so much more in store for you. Look forward to joining new teams, new players to befriend, plays to make, and yes, more tears to be shed. 

For now, make sure you leave your teams in a better state than you joined them. Leave a lasting impression for the younger crowd, and continue to be the leaders you wanted when you started playing. While the season’s ending early can lead to questioning of what might’ve been, it’s pointless to wonder about the unknown. Try not to mourn the fact that this chapter is over. It’s better to focus on the incredible times we had, celebrate the fact that you got to experience it, and that you have so much to look forward to. 

It’s crucial during times like this that we hold our favorite people and memories close to give us comfort. We can and probably will feel sad thinking about it, but remember: This community doesn’t end with college. One of the things I love most about Ultimate is that it’s truly a year-round sport if you want it to be. With almost unlimited access to seasonal leagues, club tryouts, and even just casual pickup, Ultimate has never stopped growing — and this will not stop it. 

Stay safe, stay healthy, stay Savage. 

 

Written by Savage's Production/Order Rockstar, Nick Evans 


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Avery Jenkins on the Love of the Flying Disc

Avery Jenkins on the Love of the Flying Disc

Disc sports are meaningful to all of us who love disc golf and ultimate, regardless of whether you’re throwing a disc or a Frisbee.

The feeling of the balance, the speed, the power and the throw. The ability to have “ultimate” control over the thrown object’s line, the height and the angle of the release. It’s the “beauty of flight” that has us in awe and coming back for more!

I’ve been playing frisbee since the age of five, whether it was playing catch with my parents or disc golf putting games in the backyard. It was the art of throwing that initially excited me at a young age, but it was the actual game play that had me most intrigued. It’s incredible how a simple flying toy can captivate us to the point of utter amazement, yet it’s something that none of us will completely master no matter how much we practice. Now that’s exactly why I respect most all in the disc sport disciplines.

I started playing disc golf soon after throwing my first Frisbee, because that was the sport that my parents played, so it became just another athletic activity that I enjoyed among basketball, football and baseball. It took me a while to understand how truly unique it was compared to other sports, and how many fewer people actually knew about it, but I think that’s what made it special. It wasn’t long after that I realized that I enjoyed the challenge and the competition especially against players much older than me. This is what inspired me to excel within the sport and chase that feeling of winning.

The competition drove my want to be the best for many years, the true nature of sport. I traveled, played and won tournaments all over the world, being considered one of the Top 10 players in the game but still trying to get better at the sport that I loved most.

It wasn’t until I started playing ultimate at the University of Oregon in 2005 that I got to witness the most athletic of all disc sports. A sport that made me realize how much I love throwing, and a sport that tested not only my shot-making ability but my overall athletic ability with the non-stop action. Ultimate was something that I would play with friends when I was younger, but unfortunately I never had an organized club in high school to participate in growing up.

Playing ultimate at the college level provided me with new challenges, because not only was it very physical, but it was very strategically mental as well. A non-contact sport that takes a toll on the body like no other with the running, the cuts and the full layout catches—it’s phenomenal to witness and even better to experience it.

I only played ultimate for two seasons before graduating, but I can absolutely say without a doubt that this sport made me a much better disc golfer. I was in the best shape of my life as it most definitely gave me increased stamina and endurance on the course. It also refined the technique and power of my forehand throws. It was the combination of everything along with radiating confidence that led me to winning some of the biggest tournaments of my career, a Disc Golf World Title and the No. 1 ranking in the world!

Disc golf vs. ultimate... These disc sports are completely different in almost every way except for the very thing that they have in common, the flying disc. It’s the love of the throw and watching a Frisbee fly that brings us together. So whether you’re an ultimate player or a disc golfer, I highly recommend that you give the other sport a try. Who knows? You might just find something special that has been missing from your life all along.

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