City officials are looking at joining a host of other cities in Southwest Missouri and offering a place for disc golfers to play their sport in Carthage.

City officials are looking at joining a host of other cities in Southwest Missouri and offering a place for disc golfers to play their sport in Carthage.

The City Council’s Public Services Committee discussed the possibility of installing a nine-hole disc golf course in one of the city parks.

Alan Bull, parks and recreation director, talked primarily about installing the course at Kellogg Lake Park, although the committee left the final location open in its recommendation to the full council.

“It’s not a huge investment,” Bull said. “You can have it set up and it doesn’t bother anybody else, it’s just a basket on a pole out there. We’re mowing it anyway so there’s no more mowing requirement. Those guys can play in taller grass. But we don’t let it get that high anyway. I think it sounds like a neat idea.”

Jim Crocker, chairman of the city’s Kellogg Lake Advisory Board, said his board hasn’t met to discuss the disc golf course yet, but he thinks they would be in favor of it.

He said Bull emailed him Wednesday about the possibility of building the course at Kellogg Lake.

He said the board only advises the city and doesn’t have any power to veto a plan, and he’s in favor of it.

“Anything we can do to get more families out to the park in a positive way is good for the park,” Crocker said. “We will meet with Alan to see where there would be room to put it without interfering with other activities, but ultimately it’s up to the city.”

Bull said the city looked at the Fair Acres Sports Complex for a disc golf course, but decided there was not enough room.

“And it’s featureless,” said Carthage City Council Member Jason Shelfer.
“Disc golfers love elevation changes, which we don’t have a lot of at Kellogg Lake, but we have other challenges there,” Bull added. “We do have a couple of areas that are tree lined that go down. It kind of drops down there to the new bridge and the thing is, if it floods, who cares. It’s steel posts in concrete, they’re not going to go anywhere unless something really drastic happened.

“I have a relative who plays disc golf a lot and I brought him over here. His idea was that we could get nine holes in Kellogg Lake, it wouldn’t be the best in the world, but it would work. There would be neat holes we could make. We could have some holes going down to the bottoms by the new bridge, up across the road into that main field (between the west park entrance and the slough), over the next road by the pavilion on the lake.”

Bull said some people have told him the city should hire someone to design a course, but he preferred to ask area disc golfers if they would look at the parks and see what they could do.

He said the Parks and Recreation office and the Convention and Visitors Bureau both get calls asking if Carthage has a course.

Council Member Kirby Newport suggested having public meetings and inviting residents who play disc golf or are interested in the sport to help design and place it.

Bull estimated that the nine baskets would cost the city approximately $3,500. He said concrete to place the baskets and concrete pads for tee boxes could push the cost to about $5,000 for a nine-hole course.

The committee recommended that the council allow Bull to pursue a firmer cost estimate and look into options for designing the course and return with recommendations.