MACKINAW — Central Illinois disc golf enthusiasts will soon have a new course to play.
A nine-hole disc golf is being constructed at Westwood Park in Mackinaw.
Work on the course began about three weeks ago, but according to Mackinaw Village Board Trustee Candy Haynes, the course has been in the making for more than a year-and-a-half.
“Kim Elkins, a fellow board member brought the idea before the board a while back, but it kind of kept getting put to the side,” Haynes said. “The board was behind it from the start and the village thought it was great idea. It’s really exciting for a small town like this.”
Haynes took the idea to Johnnie Harrison, owner of Plastic Addicts Disc Golf Supplies in North Pekin. She said that Harrison was equally excited about the project.
“He was all gung-ho about it from the minute I talked to him about it,” Haynes said. “He came out and looked at the park and he looked over regulations to make sure it was 100 percent kosher. He’s been great to work with.”
Harrison designed the course and is also doing the installation. He said a fellow course designer, who designed courses in Eureka, Galesburg and the course at Northwood Park in Morton, said the course has one of the best quality designs in the state.
“He told me, ‘I usually don’t drive to play, but I would come here to play,’” Harrison said.
Harrison said he would describe the course as intermediate and offers a variety of distances from 180 to 400 feet.
The baskets are powder coated red to match Dee-Mack’s school color.
With the baskets installed, the course is waiting for the concrete to be poured for the throwing tee pads and the signs for each hole.
Along with the disc golf course, the park recently received new bathrooms and also will receive new parking spaces.
Haynes expects that with the addition of the disc golf course, players will come from the entire area to play.
“I had no idea people were that into it,” Haynes said. “I guess, people play at courses in Morton and Pekin all the time. We’ve already had a great response from people wanting to know when it was going to be done, so I imagine those people playing at the other courses will come to play here, too.”
Depending on weather, the course is scheduled to be completed by May 1.
Haynes sees endless possibilities for the course in the future.
“We could have a tournament at Mack-ca-fest in June, or I know schools are getting into it now for PE and this could be something our school offers,” Haynes said. “It’s really exciting. We can’t wait for it.”