Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Disc golf championships make their way to Myrtle Beach

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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – The 2023 Innova Discs Myrtle Beach Open is returning to the Splinter City Disc Golf Course and bringing together some of the best players in the world.

The tournament spans all divisions of disc golf and allows people of all ages and experiences to try their hand.

Among the most experienced players is five-time world champion Juliana Korver. She said she needed a way to compete after she stopped playing other sports.

“I went to a very small high school and played every sport available,” Korver said.

She started college at a small, liberal arts school, but eventually transferred to a larger school.

“I didn’t think I was good enough to play sports there. By the time I was a senior, I was just craving an athletic outlet. That’s when disc golf fell in my lap.”

Korver has been playing disc golf for over two decades, but this is her first time at the Innova Discs Myrtle Beach Open.

For Deann Carey, though, she knows this tournament very well; she won her division just last year. Winning, however, was not easy.

“Last year, unfortunately, I got some news the Saturday of the tournament that my father had passed away,” Carey said. “Playing through all of that and just trying to keep my head strong and win it for him, I actually dedicated my win to him during last year. But this year, coming back and having those same emotions, just going to try to do my best and see what happens!”

Both Korver and Carey spoke about their origins in the sport, which were either by chance or through family. They were able to take the sport seriously and improve quickly, something tournament director Chad Sullivan said makes disc golf so special.

“It’s such a low barrier to not only entry but also fun,” Sullivan said. He added that anyone, regardless of age, can play disc golf. “It’s really one of the things people look to check off when they come to Myrtle Beach: what can we do with the whole family that’s affordable?”

In the context of the greater Myrtle Beach area, Sullivan said the economic impact can’t be overlooked.

“There’s close to 30 states represented,” Sullivan said. “There is usually a four to five-night stay attached to somebody coming to the area, and they almost always don’t travel alone. So, the economic impact is pretty hefty.”

Splinter City Disc Golf Course is open nearly every day from dawn to dusk. Anyone is welcome to play a round of disk golf.

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