Saturday, December 23, 2006

No Nature Walk Today

Sorry, the Nature Walk has been cancelled due to the pouring rain and raw temps. Don't want to catch a cold for Christmas, now do you? We'll try again in a few weeks.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Get Pumped: Watch This Movie Trailer

Watch this great trailer for a new movie called Chains due out next year. Caution! It may make you want to stop what you're doing and get out there and play!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Rapid Refuel Nails an Ace!

One more big sponsor today! Rapid Refuel gas station and convenience store has signed up as a $500 Ace Sponsor! Thank you Linda Brown!

RR is about two minutes away up the hill in the small strip mall that also has three other DDGC sponsors: Hanscom Bank, Dunkins, and the Devens Grill. Now you can gas up, grab a snack, and head on out to the course.

Hopefully by next year, Rapid Refill will be selling our exclusive Devens Disc Golf discs and t-shirts!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Breakmark Bags an Ace!

Thank you to Mat Goldblat of Breakmark Ultimate Apparel for joining us as a $500 Ace Level sponsor! Breakmark makes some sweet shirts for the ultimate Frisbee player in your life and can outfit your whole team at amazing prices. Mat writes:
As a college student and player, I know how difficult it can be to afford to play this great game (Ultimate). I am doing my best to offer outstanding quality at awesome pricing.

Testa Insurance Gets a Birdie!

Thank you to R.W. Testa Insurance Agency of N. Andover for signing up as our latest $300 Birdie Sponsor!

New Resident Comes Through for DDGC

Greg Everett just moved to Devens and is already supporting his new hometown. Greg donated $50 toward the course this weekend and becomes our first Par Sponsor! Thanks very much, Greg!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

We Are Done For the Season

Yes, we are officially done with major work on the course. Today, bright and early Dave, me, Rob, and Steve (left to right) met and installed four more baskets.

Hole 2 went in without incident, as did Hole 4. Next, we lucked out on Hole 3 when the hole we dug ended up being in the middle of three huge underground rocks. Three inches in either direction and we would have been bumming. Phew!

Feeling pretty good about ourselves, we headed to Hole 18 to install the last basket. But oh no, Mother Hill had different plans for us - rocks, rocks, and more rocks. Fortunately, after a lot of hard digging by Dave, Rob, and Steve (I was clearing brush from the fairway), we reached a compromise with Mother and put the basket in a few inches higher than the rest. Since the basket is on a pretty steep grade, we surrounded the pole with some rocks to make it look a little nicer.

After that we packed everything up and played a round. Rob and I grabbed lunch and headed back for a second round and were joined by Pete T. We saw the Groton Family out there again, plus two other kids. All in all, it was another beautiful day on the Hill (although I lost my nice new yellow Lat 64 Medius driver. I think it fell out of my bag. Ugh.)

More pix here:

Friday, December 15, 2006

Parker Hannifin Corp Parks a Birdie!

Thank you to the Nichols Airborne Division of Parker Aerospace for signing up as our latest Birdie level sponsor!

Parker is located on Devens and is a world leader in the design, manufacture, and servicing of hydraulic, fuel, flight control, and pneumatic components, systems, and related electronic controls for aerospace and other high-technology markets.

It's a perfect match. Discs. Flying. Aerospace. Get it? Keep them in mind the next time you need your disc's flight controls checked!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Throw for show, putt for dough

Since good putting is going to be key on the Hill, I thought I'd share a good video showing different putting styles. If you've got 12 minutes to spare, watch and learn from some touring pros.

Monday, December 11, 2006

9 More Basket Are In (or TM is the Man)

The day started late the night before. After working late at the dog factory, I came home and loaded my truck with as much material as I could fit: 10 disassembled Chainstar baskets, the 4 assembled Borderland baskets, tools, and 400 lbs of cement (5 80-lb bags).

Sunday I was up and out of the house by 7:15. Since my outside hose had frozen overnight, I headed over to one of sponsors, Dunkin' Donuts, to fill up some jugs with water. I thought we'd need it for the cement but it turns out we didn't. Dave met me at the course and we drove in to Hole 5 and started digging. TM called from the parking lot a few minutes later, so we met him and decided to install hole 13 first. While Dave and I unloaded the stuff and tried to decide the best way to do things, TM started digging and before we knew it, was done with our first 3-ft deep hole in what seemed like 10 seconds. It was a sign of things to come. The guy is a machine!

We decided to install a new Chainstar first, so TM showed us how the sleeve, collar, lock, and basket went together and showed us the right way to do things. While Dave and I stood there watching him fly through the installation, TM joked, "I've done this a few times." After about 20 minutes or so, we had our first basket in the ground. "Damn," I thought. "That was easy." I didn't want to jinx us, so I kept my mouth shut.

With our first basket in the ground, we moved down the road to Hole 12 and decided to put a Borderland basket there. This one was pretty easy too. Next, we went up the hill to Hole 11 where we put another Borderland basket. We ran into our first substantial rocks on this one, but nothing too major. We had a good system going now and for most of the day, Dave and TM did the digging and basket-building while I got everything else ready and acted as the go-for slash supervisor.

Next up was Hole 10 and since it's off the road a bit we had to lug everything over there. Not too bad, but we ran into a few more rocks. We put a Chainstar here. We walked back down the hill to the trucks and drove out to the parking lot where we moved all the tools and sleeves from TM's truck into mine. We headed out to the front 9 and as we were working on putting a Borderland basket on Hole 6, Matt Stroika showed up to help.

Hole 5 gave us some trouble with a huge rock about 2 1/2 ft down. While TM and Dave continued to bash the snot out of the rock, Matt and I moved on to Hole 15. We lucked out and didn't come across any big rocks.

At about 12:30, Brian brought us lunch (some manly meat-covered pizza), and after a short break TM and Dave installed a Chainstar on Hole 5 and Matt and I started on Hole 9 (another Chainstar). Before long, we had them both done and were ready to play a round. Unfortunately Dave and Matt had to take off, so Brian, TM, and I hit the links (but not before TM cut down that pine tree at the top of Hole 12).

There was still about 20 minutes of sunlight left after our round, so we decided to put in one last basket, a Chainstar on Hole 1. We carried our tools and supplies through the woods and up the hill. Major props go to Brian for getting that 80-lb bag of cement up there! Thankfully Andrew and I had already dug the hole Saturday morning, so we saved a few precious minutes and ended up finishing in the dark using my tiny keychain flashlight. Phew, we were done.

What a day. Nine baskets in about 6 hours with only 4 guys. Impressive. Thanks again to TM Dyer for custom-building our sleeves and collars and for showing us what the heck to do. Dave and I could have done it without you, but we'd still be on Hole 12 scratching our heads! :-)
Here's an exciting video for you:

Moreland Lending Corp. Gets a Birdie

Moreland Lending Corporation has joined the Birdie train by donating $300 to the course. Thanks a lot, Steve!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Sunday, 8AM

Parking lot. Be there.

Broke our posthole digger today after only one hole. Big day on Sunday. The more the merrier. Do come.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Work This Weekend

This is our probable schedule for this weekend:
  • Saturday: 10 or 11. Dig holes and then play. Bring a posthole digger. (Not 100% sure about the time yet)
  • Sunday: 8AM. Install polesleeves and possibly baskets, cut a few trees, and then play. (95% sure of this time)
Check back late Friday or early Saturday for definate info, or call. Let me know when you are coming to help.

Many hands will ensure we are done before the ground freezes.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

And We Have Baskets

The chains arrived today. Given the way the UPS guy stacked them in the driveway, I bet he's glad we're not ordering any more for a while.

We are hoping to install more sleeves on Sunday so that we can get these babies in the ground. But, we need some help! If we have a few workcrews we should be done in no time. The weather outlook looks great, so come out and help. Put the time in now and build up some disc golf karma points for the future! Email me if you can help. More details later.

 Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Updated Photos of Each Hole

We took a photo on every hole today and tried to give you a good idea of what awaits you on the Hill. Let me know what you think. Click below to start the slideshow.

A Beautiful Day on the Hill

Dave and I started the day making a path between Hole 12 and 13 and then cleared a bunch of junk from Hole 12's fairway. Now it's a bit more defined. Only a few more trees to get out of the way and this hole will be killer.

As Dave was leaving, I hooked up with Nut and we played a round. It was a fun time since I was sucking and he wasn't. After Brian beat me by one on the front 9, I buckled down and came back to win by 7 strokes thanks to a few birdies.

We met a family from Groton who was headed out to play the back nine after playing the front 9 yesterday. It was great to see! Thanks for coming out!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Work and Play on Sunday

Pre Season Speed Dave and I are doing some work Sunday morning. Probably 10, not quite sure yet. Depends on when I get home Sat. night from the Who concert. Yeah baby.

We are going to hack out a path from 12 to 13 and finishing tidying 18. Let me know if you'd like to help out. I'll post here Sunday morning before I leave.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Help Support the Fort Devens Historical Museum

The Fort Devens Historical Museum is raffling off a handmade quilt with a patriotic theme, made and donated by a Devens resident. $5 a ticket. Anyone interested in viewing the quilt or purchasing a ticket can contact Ian Meisner at the museum at 94 Jackson Road, Suite 305, or call 978-772-1286. Good luck!

When we get our signs made, the kind folks at the museum will be supplying us with historical Devens tidbits to put on each sign, so please show your support!

Click the picture for more details.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Today's Devens Treasure

We came across this old-school Snoopy and Woodstock Thermos a few Saturdays ago on Hole 9. Thanks to whoever left it by the tee with the growing collection of "antique" soda and beer cans.

This looks to be a late 1960s-, early 1970s-era Thermos that goes in a lunchbox. Back in the day, I had a much cooler lunchbox -- Speed Buggy. Which one did you have?

Monday, November 27, 2006

And They're Here!

Or at least most of them are. The chain assemblies are due in a few weeks. Aren't they beautiful? ;-)

It's a Boy!

Congratulations to Devens DG Board member Steve Berthiaume and his wife Kimberly on the birth of their second son, Owen! Owen joined us Friday, Nov. 24 at 8:11AM weighing in at 7 lb, 8 oz.

Early reports are that he has more hair than his Dad! Look for Owen and his big brother Miles out on the course soon!

Dunkin' Donuts Gets a Birdie

We are happy to announce that Dunkin' Donuts has signed up as a Birdie Sponsor! Dunkins is located minutes from the course up by the gas station and the Devens Grill. Be sure to stop by before each round for your caffeine fix. Thanks, Dunkins!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Hole lengths, chains, litter, and a snake

I went over to the course this morning because I've been wanting to measure the length of each hole for a few weeks now. I was hoping to record tee and basket elevation too, but the satellites just weren't cooperating today and my GPS gave me some wacky readings. As I look at these measurements now, I think some must be wrong because a couple seem way to short, especially 14. I may have to do it the old-fashioned way next time.

While measuring hole 8, I heard the beautiful ching of chains on 14, the only hole with a real basket. It was great to hear, but when I got to 14, I found a fresh Budweiser bottle empty about halfway up. That bummed me out, but I'd like to think that the bottle just fell out of someone's bag. It did, didn't it?

Later on 17, I came across this snake catching some rare late November sun. I took a bunch of pictures of him, but he didn't move a muscle -- just stuck his tongue out at me a few times.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Almost Here

There should be 9 boxes and poles sitting on my porch when I get home tonight. If not, then Friday. Shoot, I should just stop by and pick them up directly from UPS on my lunch break since I work about 10 miles away!

No, I'm not too excited about this..... ha!

Monday, November 20, 2006

They're On the Way!

And There's One In

Bill the Neighbor and I installed the Innova basket Sunday afternoon on Monster hole 14. It sure does look purty. Dave James also spent some time earlier in the day tidying up some tee boxes. Thanks guys.

During our round later, Bill became the first disc golfer in history to putt on a real metal basket at Devens. It was a magical moment. He also won the "Most Ticks" award with 4 I think. I had my usual three but still feel like there's a few crawling around on me this morning. When will I remember to put some Off on, even in this colder weather?

My boy Rob Curtis and his buddy came out from Dorchester to check on our progress. We caught up with them for a few holes before they had to take off to go watch the Pats-Packers massacre. Thanks for making the trip out to the country, boys! We also bumped into two new faces from Ayer who had heard about the course from our blurb on the local access channel. It's nice to see that the local contingent is growing.

Here's Monster 14, looking down down down to the tee:

Friday, November 17, 2006

Thank You Buyers

Thank you to whoever is using the Marshall Street pro shop link on our blog to buy stuff. Five percent of your purchase is coming back to Devens Disc Golf Club so you should feel good about that. It all adds up, so keep on clicking and buying! Thanks again! :)

> Learn how to make this snazzy dollar bill shirt.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

The First 9 Baskets Are On Their Way (sort of)

We ordered our first nine baskets! After hours of debate and field testing, we decided to go with Discraft Chainstars. Kudos to Brian for kicking butt on fundraising these past few months.

There are only a few more sponsorships left until we can get our next nine. (Our baskets will not have the base or wheel as shown in the photo.)

Unfortunately, there is a part shortage for the chain assembly so that piece won't arrive until mid-to-late December. However, the pole and basket will ship tomorrow. What a tease. Once everything arrives, we'll have 14 genuine metal baskets to install.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Phew! What a Week!

Wow! What a week for Devens Disc Golf! After getting the order to temporarily close the course last Friday, things still went full-speed ahead as we broke out the big saws and cleared Hole 18 and thinned out Hole 7 and Hole 8.

Brian definately earned his Executive Director title this week as he got the 503c process going (making us a charitable organization) and landed three more sponsors. Good job, Nut!

Ace level hole sponsorships are getting scarce and that's a good thing. We've got 10 holes sponsored and plan on purchasing our first 9 baskets next week once we get a final quote in.

So, we are pretty excited over on the Hill as things are coming together. I just can't believe we are almost there ... it's been a long time coming. There's still a lot of work to be done, but I just can't wait til I hear the sweet sound of chains in the woods!

Here are our current sponsors:

Ace Level ($500)
  1. NEFA
  2. Hanscom Credit Union
  3. Innova
  4. Pre Season Speed
  5. Devens Recreation Department
  6. Devens Grill
  7. Gemini Dogs
  8. MicroVision Laboratories
  9. Image Software Services
  10. Data Intensity

Birdie Level ($300)
  1. Family Fun Spot (pending)
  2. N. B. Kenney Company

Par Level (any other amount)
  1. Nobody yet!

Data Intensity Sponsors a Hole!

After months and months of talking about nothing but disc golf to his boss Kevin Kennefick at Data Intensity, Brian finally persuaded him to sponsor a hole. Yahoo! "I just wanted him to get back to work!" Kevin said, "And I figured this was the best way to do it." Thank you Data Intensity!
Data Intensity provides a full range of managed IT services to corporations in every major industry group, non-profit organizations, and local, state, and federal government agencies.

Image Software Services Sponsors a Hole!

The good news keeps on coming -- Image Software Services is our latest Ace Level sponsor! Jeff worked with Brian to create our fundraising info packs that are definately working! Image Software Services provides CD and DVD creation and duplication, on-demand digital printing, packaging, and other media services. Thank you Jeff!

MicroVision Laboratories Sponsors a Hole!

It's been a great week for sponsorships! After a tour of the course with Brian over the weekend, disc golf newbie and Devens resident John Knowles agreed to become our next Ace Level sponsor! John is the President and owner of Microvision Labs in Burlington, MA. Thank you John!
MicroVision Laboratories, Inc. is an analytical microscopy service lab providing high quality scanning electron microscopy, quantitative elemental analysis, and optical microscopy services to a wide variety of industries in and around Boston. Founded in 2003, MicroVision Labs has helped solve numerous manufacturing, quality control and R&D problems for hundreds of companies in areas such as membrane technology, semi-conductors, pharmaceuticals, environmental engineering, biomedical technology, and micro-electronics.
Check out more cool (and icky) photos like these on their website. Click each photo for an extreme closeup. Caution: view well after lunch! :-)

Spider Mite

Moth's tongue

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Scorecard Added, New Stats Page

Since we have 18 playable holes now, I figured I'd post the scorecard and create a new stats page too. The scorecard is quite basic, but has our snazzy logo on it. A true collector's item I'm sure.

Par is 54; all holes are par 3. I plan on adding length info eventually.
Be sure to email me your scores so that I can add them to the stats page. Thanks.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

TM Delivers Again

Great day yesterday. TM, Bill the Neighbor, and I finished cutting 18. TM did the cutting and Bill and I dragged most into piles, but we still left some for the rest of you.

The first half of the fairway looks awesome. You tee off from behind an impressive-looking row of boulders looking out over the fairway. About 150+ ft out the hill crests and it's down you go through an alley of trees to the basket which is about 2/3 the way down. Miss the putt and chances are you'll roll to the bottom.

Go here for an interesting study on the stone walls and boulders of New England.

Haven't quite decided the best way to play this hole yet (either go for it over the hill or layup to where it starts to go down). None-the-less, it's going to be a fun one. Plus, at the crest of the hill looking SW you can see an American flag flying in the distance as well as the distant Worcester hills. Beautiful.

We moved on to Hole 7 (with the old antenna concrete tee pad) and removed a number of trees in the lower fairway making it more playable and fair. We also widened the right side where the fairway starts to curve right and go down so that it is a little more obvious where you should throw from the tee. On hole 8 we removed a few trees on the left so now there is a defined left or right path to take up the valley.

With about an hour left of sunlight (damn those 4:30 sunsets!) we played a quick round and finished the last four holes in the dark. That was interesting.

Major huge mega thanks to TM for coming up to help. I love your Implements of Destruction!

Friday, November 03, 2006

The Course Is Temporarily Closed

As of 7:30AM, Devens Disc Golf Course is temporarily closed.

The two main reasons center around insurance and handicap accessibility.

I'll try to explain it as best as I can remember from our meeting this morning:

1. Because Devens is not yet a town and is instead run by MassDevelopment (a state agency), it does not (or cannot) offer general insurance to cover the course. If someone falls and wants to sue, they could sue MassDev as well as Brian and me and anyone involved in building the course. Because MassDev, Brian, and I do not want to get sued, we have decided to close the course. If Devens were a town, this would not be an issue because the course would be covered by the town's insurance policy.

2. Since Devens is technically a State entity, it has to follow laws concerning the ADA (American Disabilities Act). Everything that Devens installs on Devens has to be ADA-compliant, be it walking paths, observation towers, playgrounds, and disc golf courses. Obviously, making a disc golf course in New England handicap accessible is nearly impossible, especially on the Hill. Again, if Devens were a town, they would not have to follow these requirements, I believe.

So, what can we do? They suggested that we (Devens Disc Golf Club) form an LLC or non-profit organization and then rent the Hill from MassDev for $1/year. We would have to get our own insurance, just like any group that rents a soccer field does now, for example.

They said we can continue to work on the course, raise money, etc., but must post a "The Course Is Closed" sign on tee 1. This should protect everyone from anyone who decides to ignore the sign, play anyway, and fall.

Once we form our group and get insurance, the course will officially re-open. Until then, stay tuned.

If you were planning on helping Sat. thanks, but I won't be going over until later to put up the sign.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

N. B. Kenney Signs Up as Birdie Sponsor!

More good news from the Hill. Local plumbing and HVAC contractor, N. B. Kenney Company, has signed up as a Birdie sponsor for $300! Yahoo and thank you, Steve!

Specializing in challenging and complex projects, the work of N.B. Kenney Company, Inc. can be found some the leading schools, universities, government and municipal buildings, hospitals, laboratories, and housing projects in the Northeast region. Our dedication and meticulous attention to quality and safety is unmatched in the industry.
Here are our current sponsors. Would anyone else care to join this exclusive list? Only 11 Ace sponsorships left!

Ace Sponsors

2. Hanscom Credit Union
3. Innova
4. James family
5. Devens Recreation Department
6. Devens Grill
7. Gemini Dogs

Birdie Sponsors
1. Family Fun Spot
2. N. B. Kenney Company

Also: Borderland Disc Golf has loaned us four baskets.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Saturday Workday

Who's in for Saturday? Let's finish 18 and 12. Rah rah rah! Maybe we'll install some baskets if I get my act together and buy some locks. Go team go!

9 AM. Somebody bring a chainsaw....please!

Then we'll play and enjoy 18 beautiful holes for the first time. Wow, it's only Tuesday and I'm already looking forward to Saturday. That can't be good.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Gemini Dogs Sponsors a Hole!

Woof! Good news! Gemini Dogs has officially sponsored Hole 9! Yahoo! I hear that the owner really loves disc golf. Hole 9 will now be known as the "Canine Hole". Get it? Honestly, how do I come up with these gems?

Anyway, thank you very much to my wife Michelle for agreeing to sponsor the hole. "Our marriage has never been better!" she joked. "John has spent basically every weekend since April building the course and we never see each other. I figured it was the least I could do!"

Attention dog lovers: Gemini Dogs is holding a Howl-o-ween Festival and Open House this Sunday, 12-4 in Littleton, MA. Stop by and bring your dog too. More details here.

Rumor has it that two more sponsors are in the pipeline, so get in while you still can. Contact Brian before it's too late! He is on fire lately! Yow!

Here are our current sponsors. Would anyone else care to join this exclusive list? Only 11 holes left!

2. Hanscom Credit Union
3. Innova
4. James family
5. Devens Recreation Department
6. Devens Grill
7. Gemini Dogs

Also: Borderland Disc Golf has loaned us four baskets.