Service: The Mobile Disc Golf Experience
Event: Heads in Harmony
City: Norridgewock, ME
The Big Idea for The Mobile Disc Golf Experience at Heads in Harmony Music Festival was to provide a connection to the larger context of the grounds through a 6-hole disc golf course that moved users to the edge of the space where they could enjoy nature and the challenging temporary course while still clearly hearing music from the Main Stage. The 6-hole disc golf course was a blend of tightly wooded shots and big field bombers, while slippery turtleback greens and severe elevation changes challenged users of all ability levels.
The site of Heads in Harmony Music Festival took place on the expansive property at Last Breath Farm in central Maine. With hundreds of rolling, wooded acres, the farm is home to a massive motocross facility that features over a mile of track. The owners, whom are constantly hosting motocross events in addition to concerts and festival gatherings, were immediately interested in the disc golf course we put together and the infrastructure required. While the motocross track was off limits for festival patrons, the course did utilize the track at one point as a tee box for the slippery 4th hole. While any permanent course we installed would never interfere with the motocross track, parts of the track were utilized to not only provide a change in elevation on the course, but to bring users to this part of the property to see the amazing facility they have created.
We at Explore Disc Golf use the disc golf course as not only a promotional platform, but also as a conduit to interact with nature. The course, when properly designed, stretches the landscape and moves users to significanct on-site features, prospect points and more. Our course would never come close to the track in terms of safety, but in the overall context of the multiple hundred acre site, would connect to it by placing holes within a short walk of the track so they could enjoy the motocross track itself, while still enjoying the solitude of disc golf in the woods of Maine.
The overall flow of the 6-hole course connected the campgrounds and motocross track to the music and vending area. The 1st and 2nd holes ran along and within the woods to provide several technical shots for players from the very beginning. The 2nd hole was one of the most demanding with a tight wooded fairway changing 18′ in elevation from tee to green, while the basket was tucked alongside the motocross track in a field adding another 40′ to a hole that already demanded two great shots to get to the basket.
The 3rd and 4th holes, while short in length, provided a challenge for players through severe changes in elevation. While the 3rd hole demanded a laser straight tee shot over a severally undulating rough line to an island green, the 4th hole was one of the most delicate on the course. The 4th hole at Last Breath Farm was the shortest hole we have designed this season — only 108′ in length. While the minimum length for a PDGA-approved course is 150′, we took what the site gave us, and provided one of the funnest holes we have designed yet. With the tee box situated under the finish line of the motocross track, players had a straight away tee shot that was not only visually intimidating, but made you think on a variety of levels. The basket was framed by birches and pine trees, while the hole was -6 feet in elevation from tee to green. The fairway and basket location were relatively flat, but severally ran away only a couple paces past the basket. This severe slope, while safe for users, kept players honest in their bid for birdies on this ace run. Getting the disc all the way to the basket was a challenge for most, as only a few positions left players with an aggressive putt, while all other positions would leave players with the option of being too careful with their birdie putts, or getting too aggressive, rolling down the hill and having a difficult uphill 20′ putt for par. This hole was one of our favorites as it provided just as many bogies as it did birdies, ultimately staying in the players heads as they proceeded on to the 5th and 6th holes. Disc golf, just like traditional golf, is a game that benefits players who have the “one shot at a time” mentality, and the ticklish 4th hole showcased who had the ability to brush off an unexpected bogey or not.
The 5th and 6th holes brought out the big field bombers, as both tee boxes were perched at two of the highest portions of the site. Framed by gorgeous birch trees, disc golfers could be seen teeing off on these holes from within the music portion of the site, helping with promotion of the course and sport through visibility of disc golfers and disc golf baskets. While no hole was longer than 350′, the 5th and 6th holes gave players the opportunity to let it rip after having a couple of holes to familiarize themselves with the multiple flight characteristics of the disc.
While the attendance of the festival was a bit lacking due to weather, the reception of those on site that used The Mobile Disc Golf Experience was once again very positive! We sold several DX starter packs, and had half a dozen serious conversations with land owners that were extremely excited about the possibility of bringing disc golf to their property. The course was incredible scenic, yet fun and challenging for both beginners and advanced players. The property at Last Breath Farm is limitless with potential, and we look forward to returning in the near future. You can look for Explore Disc Golf’s Mobile Disc Golf Experience at several more music festivals this summer, but please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to bring disc golf to your next event!