As pandemic drives outdoor recreation, Glide Disc Golf sees scores of newcomers to sport | Business News

Brahm Buck

The store does compete with big-box retailers in Madison that offer disc golf products, such as Walmart and Dick’s Sporting Goods, he said. Having first played disc golf in 2000, Batka speaks passionately about the sport and its history, the types of discs, and the national and international manufacturers he’s […]

The store does compete with big-box retailers in Madison that offer disc golf products, such as Walmart and Dick’s Sporting Goods, he said.

Having first played disc golf in 2000, Batka speaks passionately about the sport and its history, the types of discs, and the national and international manufacturers he’s been spending more time calling and emailing to keep the store stocked in the face of product shortages. Batka and the two part-time employees — both avid disc golfers — offer advice and guidance to new players.

“You can’t necessarily get that guidance buying from a website,” Batka said.

The store also appeals to die-hards who drive in from places like Milwaukee and Rockford, Illinois, to browse, Batka said.

For veterans to the sport, being able to feel and see the discs before making a purchase is important, he said. They also often have specific preferences on the texture, weight and color of discs.

Locally, sales of disc golf permits through the city’s Parks Division to play the three seasonal courses presented a mixed picture.






The niche sporting goods retailer is the only shop in Madison devoted solely to disc golf, and it’s located right across from a disc golf course in Hiestand Park.




The city sold 1,908 annual disc golf permits in 2020, a significant bump compared to about 1,450 in each 2018 and 2019. At the same time, the cheaper daily permits took a year-over-year dive from 5,284 in 2019 to 3,279 in 2020.

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