Miami’s George Francis Riverview Park will be the site for Saturday’s inaugural Riverview Open, a Professional Disc Golf Association event.
Thirty-two players had signed up by Thursday afternoon, which pleased tournament director Russ Burns.
“I wasn’t going to offer pre-registration, but I thought we’d see how it went,” Burns said. “Holy smokes! Most of the time you have people sign up the day of. This is the first one in Miami ever, so I didn’t really know what to expect. But I know now that it’s going to be good.”
Registration will be from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. with a players meeting at 9:45 a.m. Play will begin at 10 a.m.
There will be six divisions: pro, advanced, intermediate, recreational, novice and junior.
Players will go from the alternate tees in the first round then play the regular tees for the second round.
The tournament is a C-tier event sponsored by Burns’ Disc Golf Monkey and the Ottawa County Disc Golf Club.
Two ranked players are among those who have preregistered: No. 8 Devan Owens and No. 41 Kota Hatfield.
Owens, from Owasso, has three firsts and a second thus far in 2009.
Hatfield, from Tulsa, has logged six firsts and three third-place finishes in 11 events this season.
“The city is really trying hard to make sure we get this going,” said Danny Booth of the Ottawa County Disc Golf Club. “They’re going to make sure the park is mowed and ready.
The OCDGC wants to replace the baskets on the course, located on the west side of the park by the Neosho River – which leaves the course prone to flooding.
“We have homemade baskets,” Booth said. “They’re not PDGA-approved, but they will still sanction the tournament. Our ultimate goal is to get baskets that are better.”
Burns said his first tournament of the season at Republic, Mo., in March drew 69 players.
Burns said disc golf is a fast growing sport.
“It’s a lot of fun,” he said. “Anybody can play, young or old, athletic or not. There is such a wide spectrum of players.
He said there are 13 disc golf courses in Tulsa and three in Springfield, Mo. There are 50 courses within 100 miles of Dallas.
“It’s growing quick,” Burns said.
Jim Ellis, 542-5533, ext. 3052