Once an unused area of brush and debris, one east Lubbock location has been cleared away to make fairways. Local disc golfers have a more challenging place to make an ace.
Seven months and $20,000 later, Michael Conklink unveiled his pride and joy this weekend. Lubbock's new 18-hole disc golf course is located at Mae Simmons Park.
"Everybody came together," Conkling said. "there are about 70 disc golfers here today for the grand opening. But all private labor, all private donations. Everything that's been done here has been done off of local disc golfers."
Conkling has been the push behind the project, but said community support has made the idea a reality. His right-hand man Rob Lee, a member of Lubbock's local disc golf club Wind Riders, has been involved every step of the way.
"We had a vision for many years, many of us that played disc golf, on having a highly technical course here," Lee said. "And we were finally able to work out the details and agreement with the city, Parks and Recreation department, they have been really helpful. Basically, Michael signed the bottom line and they let us do all the work."
The goal was to create a course different from Mackenzie Park's course, which is more open. Dillon Vallance, the sport's number one amateur in the state, said he is always ready for a new challenge.
"It is nothing like we have in this area in Texas," Vallance said. "it is probably one of the best wooded courses we have in Texas. Everybody's game is going to change because it is going from trying to throw it as far as you can to trying to make it as accurate as you can."
And whether you are playing at an amateur level or just for fun, the comraderie is what keeps people coming back.
"Everybody knows everybody," Vallance said. "We all have each other's phone number, we call and all meet up 3 times a week to play."
"When you start playing with people, you meet friends, and it just becomes a tight-knit community," Conkling said.
With over half of the holes complete with sculptures by local artist Steve Teeters, the course isn't just recreation, it's also art appreciation. Lee said they hope to have all the holes complete within a couple of months.