A drizzling rain did little to deter the enthusiasm of county leaders and supporters attending a ribbon cutting to unveil the George Sappenfield Disc Golf Course at the new addition to the Yadkin Memorial Park on Thursday. The 18-hole disc golf course, located off Ireland Road, was designed by Sappenfield, creator of the game and member of the Disc Golf Hall of Fame.
County Chairman Kevin Austin welcomed attendees to the ceremony, recalling standing on the spot years before for the groundbreaking of the Hood-Chamberlain dam which created the lake that is the center of the park. Austin said the project had been in the works since 1954 and he, along with Commissioners David Moxley, Gilbert Hemric, Marion Welborn and Frank Zachary, have continued to move forward ideas to create the park for county residents and visitors.
“We didn’t dream all this up by ourselves. It’s been with the help of a lot of different people, citizens and staff of this county,” said Austin.
The disc golf course, which also includes a restroom area, is what will be known as Yadkin Memorial Park – East.
“It has its own unique pieces and flavor, we look forward to it continuing to grow,” Austin said.
Parks and Recreation Director Jason Walker spoke briefly at the ceremony noting the additional new features of the park which include new trails, a dog park and seven primitive campsites with a bathhouse.
At Monday’s County Commissioners meeting several areas of the Yadkin County Park, located off Service Rd. in Yadkinville as well as the Memorial Park, were named in honor of longtime supporters of the respective parks, several of which attended the ribbon cutting.
“These people up here have been just such a tremendous part of this park and our community. It makes me really proud to be in Yadkin County,” Austin said.
Sappenfield shared stories during the ceremony about the creation of the game of disc golf and its evolution over the years and said he hopes the new portion of the park will bring in even more visitors.
“It’s really an honor to be a part of this,” Sappenfield said. “This whole area is so gorgeous and unfortunately a lot of people don’t realize that it is here, hopefully adding this particular phase of it will get even more people from around the region coming in.”
Sappenfield said he was honored to be asked to help design the new course and it was designed with fun in mind for beginner players.
“This park will be one of over 10,000 in the world. There’s one on every continent. Now there are people making a living off of disc golf. The beauty of this particular course is we designed a course that is a beginners’ course. This is to come out and have a good time — that’s what this is designed for. So those of you who have no idea how to play, come out here and try it,” said Sappenfield.
The George Sappenfield Disc Golf Course is located at 2513 Ireland Road, Yadkinville. The dog park and primitive camp sites are at the main section of Yadkin Memorial Park, located at 1142 Crystal Lane, Yadkinville.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-258-4035 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.