Update on current club discussions and proposed south course by Scott Franke.

A couple officers and honorary members got together tonight to develop a unified front to present to the park district tomorrow for the meeting at 9:30. Some issues we are going to address with the park district include the following:

– Areas available for usage and placement of the third course.
– Park district offerings to help install and develop the third course.
– Issues involved with current tee pads and tee pad modification.
– Issues with earmarked funds and how we can insure these funds are used for the good of the course/park and used in a manner deemed fit by the club.
– New signage – what they can provide vs. what we have sought out, cost/benefit
– Possible shelter/tournament central and kiosk to display upcoming events and allow a prominent tournament central area for events.
– Establishment of a contact list with horse and bike representatives.
– Develop a timeline for when construction will commence and set-up a time frame for work days and course installation.
– Possibility of park district of helping us print scorecards for kiosk, pamphlets, and tournament posters.

There were multiple other issues discussed as would be expected when any of us come together and we have decided there are things that should be done before meetings and for the good of the club.

One thing we would like to start is a thread on the message board and the Facebook page to bring up things current members would like discussed at the next meeting. We want to run tighter meetings where we can address all issues that are brought to our attention but in a timely manner. Often times these meetings get off on an issue and we stray from what the actual issue is and meetings can drag on. From now on, we would like to have the issues that need to be addressed be stated previous to the meeting not only for flow but also so members can think through and develop their perspective of the situation and things can be talked out with some serious thought and not based on initial reactions and feelings.

Another major issue we discussed was our club picnic date. There are some conflicting tournaments members may want to play on the last weekend of August so we were thinking the first weekend in September. It is a debate on Saturday, September 1, or Sunday, September 2. I am going to set up a pole to see what our member’s thoughts are on which date is better for them. We want to provide a great picnic for our members but want to make sure attendance is good and want to set up a RSVP so that funds are spent accordingly.

As for the new front nine basket order on the East course. I received $400 of donations from Barry from various club members tonight and Zak said he would also donate $40 that I will receive this week. I will take that $440 and add enough club funds to order the DGA Mach V’s voted on to replace the front nine baskets. We want to address ownership of the extra baskets with the park district tomorrow to see where we sit with them and how we are going to proceed with the old baskets. This order will be placed this week, they may be backordered again, but I will place the order and see what our time frame is on receiving these new baskets. The only reason this order had not been placed was because I had not received any promised donated funds for these baskets. I can not be expected to just blindly order baskets based on promises. That wouldn’t be right for me as manager of the funds and if I did so I would not be looking out for what’s best for the club. I know the funds are available as how the members see fit but at the same time I feel it is my responsibility to make sure we do not waste money if we do not have to and make sure we can maximize what funding we have. In many issues votes are placed on stipulations, when these stipulations fall through these votes cannot be considered relevant any longer. Votes are not just placed on a certain matter. In this situation the vote was based on the fact that $700 was donated towards baskets from members and the club was going to pick up the rest. This leaves the club picking up $2560. Since the “donations” fell through, that put us in a situation where it was readdressed at the last meeting. Some members stepped up and made up some of the difference, I thank those members, but it did not cover the full difference. Does that mean we need to revote? We are going to order the baskets but for future reference if a major donor does not follow through should the issue not be readdressed?? In the end $440 was donated from the proposed $700 and instead of $2560 (as voted on) now the club needs to pay $2820. It may not matter to many but this is a large difference and was not based on what the club voted on. We are moving forward to avoid any possible questions, critiques, comments, or situations but in the future I feel if this happens we should decide to have a complete revote. Stipulations of a vote have a major persuasion and can completely sway a vote toward one side or another. Just something to keep in mind.

A list of current members was presented and this list will be posted on the website soon. If there are any issues where a member does not want their name posted we will use first name with last initial in these situations. We just want the members to be known and want to create a group that can come together to say they are a supporter of the courses and are interested in what is best for the future of our wonderful disc golf courses.

From now on at each club meeting we are going to include a wish list we have for the park district. The park district would like us to provide a monthly wish list and wants to know what we hope to see them do for us. These wish list items can be brought up at the meeting or included on the thread of discussions for the next meeting.

With the third course being approved we are looking for any input on course design and are also considering bringing in some course designers if feasibly possible. Some members have already laid out some designs but nothing is set in stone and we all want to make the best course we are able to provide with the land allocated for use by the park district. Please give input on what you would like to see and these issues can be addressed at the next club meeting or any future club meetings until the course is in place. We want to provide a course that all of our members agree upon but please keep in mind that we want to develop a championship style course. We have two other courses that, if we want to, can be placed in easier positions, and this new course we want to make to be a draw for bigger tournaments with a larger draw of players and bring in top professionals within the sport as well as have larger tier tournaments. We are thinking big picture and want to have a wonderful variety of courses and holes and want to make Rockford a number one stop for players of all abilities.

I also want it be known to everyone that being a member does not then require anything from you. Joining the club does not make you required to come to meetings but gives you the opportunity to voice your thoughts and opinions. You also do not have to be there for leagues every week or any week for that matter and are not required to volunteer for anything and do not have to attend any club functions. We welcome all members, whether it is for the discount on discs or to attend the club picnic only (well worth it itself), or if it is to become more involved. Anyone is welcome to join for any reason and is not then required to do anything for the park or for events. There have always been concern for some of these requirements and I just want all possible members to know they can join without anything being asked of them. This is a club where you choose your level of involvement. Join to support or join to make sure your opinions are heard, either way you are supporting the course you love to play and it will only go towards the betterment of courses we are allowed and improve what we are able to enjoy out there.

We are on the verge of having the number one disc golf stop in Illinois!! Having three premium courses warrants us to be a national tour stop, IOS stop, Illinois State Champs stop and really any major event Illinois has to offer stop. It would be amazing for our course to be featured on the PDGA or in Discgolfer Magazine. Lets help make that happen and lets quit working against each other and come together to make the most of what we have!! We have so many opportunities and we have already come a long way but we can make this a premium Illinois disc golf site and we should really push toward that goal.

I want to thank everyone for your interest in the club and the sport! We are working to create more awareness of the sport and make it bigger and better than ever. This sport is gaining more and more awareness as each year goes on and is becoming more main-stream than ever. We are all working to make this sport more recognized and get more sponsorship and just get this sport known by as many people as possible. Let’s work together to create a wonderful course to play and make this an enjoyable stop for any local or traveling patron.

We are only as strong as our players and we want to create the best spot in Illinois to stop and play!! All players’ views need to be heard and let’s get everyone involved to create something that everyone can enjoy. We have so many wonderful golfers that frequent the park daily and very few in comparison are part of the club. The club is not exclusive and we listen to everyone. Please join just to support the park and all the efforts we are pushing for and get your voice heard!!

As a club, GRABM, has so many things we would like to add and transform the club/park into to make the best course offering possible. We want to replace baskets, solve tee pad problems, add third course, tier baskets, elevate baskets, help stop course erosion, and create new tee pads/ hole locations. We want to offer the best courses we can to our community and please help us achieve these goals so we can all enjoy some local amazing disc golf where people want to come for the experience.

Thank you all for your time and listening. We have come a long way in the past 22 years but we have a long way to come. Everyone has a personal idea of what they think is the best future course of action but we need to come together as best we can as a group. Let’s get this third course put in right and let’s make Rockford a major Illinois stop!!