Who introduced you to disc golf and how long have you been playing?
On September 20, 2013 my friend Tucker and my mom finally convinced me to try disc golf. Tucker was an ultimate Frisbee friend of mine who slowly but surely convinced most of our ultimate pickup group to try disc golf. It was love at first throw, despite my judgments that the sport would be boring
Eleanor & her mom on the course
Backhand or forehand?
Since I came from ultimate Frisbee, I feel pretty equally comfortable with both backhand and forehand.
The New England Team Challenge is a growing event out in your neck of the woods (no pun intended;)) do you participate in the team challenge? If so what team? What is your favorite part about the team challenge?
New England Team Challenge is so amazing! I am on the Borderland Billygoats and we actually won our division this year, the C-pool champions of the 2016-2017 season!! My favorite part is definitely the camaraderie and friendship you can build with playing in a team setting, which I hadn’t gotten as much from team sports in the past as I’ve gotten through New England Team Challenge.
If you could have an official tee off song what would it be?
Well for GBO next week, I chose “Float On” by Modest Mouse. It has a good beginning riff and a good message for my mental game.
Every bunny wants to know why bunnies make the best pets?
Hahaha Bunnies make the best pets because they have a lot more personality than most people think. They can be sassy, sweet, energetic, curious etc. Enys is really spunky yet affectionate, will lick my nose and dig at my pant legs at any moment. Penelope is very curious and sweet, has opened up a lot more over the past 2 years and gotten braver. They are inseparable too, which is really sweet to see, but they get overly excited for breakfast every morning.
If you could play with only 3 discs for the rest of your disc golf career what 3 discs would you choose?
This is probably the toughest question. Based on what I throw now and being able to have versatile options, I would pick the Westside BT Soft Swan, Dynamic Discs Fuzion Evidence, and the Westside Tournament Northman. I’m on team trilogy so of course it’s all Swedish plastic
You were one of our first customers when we launched our website in 2015, thank you. What is your favorite thing you have ordered from Ladies First Disc Golf?
Another tough question!! The original very soft purple t-shirt is incredibly comfortable and I wear it all the time, so I’d have to pick that.
Would you rather play in 25 degree snowy sunny conditions or 85 degree hot & humid conditions?
I would probably rather play in 85 degrees even if it’s humid, but I’m sure I would say the opposite in late summer
If you could have an official beer of disc golf what would it be?
I personally enjoy lighter wheat beers so I would choose Alagash White. Easy to drink on hot days and very refreshing!
You have recently started do some cool things with dying discs. May we see some examples? If someone wanted a dyed disc by Eleanor do you have them for sale or do custom dyes?
I post most of my disc dyes on Instagram (@eleanor_discbunny) and tag them all with #DyesByEleanor. Right now, I dye periodically for a local shop, The Hawks Nest, here in Massachusetts but I am always open to commissions. Sometimes people mail me discs they have an I mail them back after dyeing them. So far, it hasn’t gotten big enough to warrant creating my own stock so I usually do custom orders. It’s definitely something that is very fun for me to bring two of my hobbies together, art and disc golf.
Let’s take a walk down memory lane, what do you remember most about your first round of disc golf? Who were you with and where did you play your first round?
I was first exposed to disc golf in 2005, my friends and I used to go to a small 9 hole course that was in our neighborhood. I tried it out a couple of times, but never really played a full round. But my first ever REAL round would have to be when I bought my first set of discs in 2013, at the Delaveaga Pro Shop. My friends and I had made the trip to play Dela, but I didn’t have any of my own discs at the time, so I decided that I need to get my own (just in case I lost any of theirs). I bought a Reef, Skeeter, Sidewinder, & a Leopard. I survived all 27 holes without losing any of the 4 discs I had just purchased, sooo…I’d say it was a pretty successful first round. The Leopard is still in my bag to this day, however the rest have been sacrificed to courses all around California.
In 2016 you made it to #1 on the wait list for Am Worlds, are you going to try to play again this year in Quad Cities, IA?
As of right now I am going to try to make it out to Am Worlds. I am graduating college here in 8 weeks, and plan to be attending a lot more tournaments starting in June.
Which dairy state is superior in terms of cheese products: California or Wisconsin?
Jenny, why must you make me choose! They both have their positives, but at the end of the day…who can say no to Wisconsin Cheese Curds! I left a little bit of my heart in Wisconsin this past summer.
If you could play in a doubles tournament and choose any partner in the whole world who would you choose?
That’s a tough one…
If you could have an official beer of disc golf what would it be?
Well now that’s an easy on…my favorite beer, of course. The Deschutes Chainbreaker, White IPA. The name alone makes it ready to be an official beer of disc golf.
What is your favorite bag from Upper Park Designs? Is there a bag that you would suggest for female players?
I absolutely love The Shift by Upper Park Designs. I recommend The Shift to any and all female players, if I get the chance. It still has plenty of room to carry 15+ discs, snacks, clothes, etc. But it’s significantly smaller on the back than The Rebel, and I find it easier to carry around during my tournament play.
Use coupon code JENN on Upper Park’s website to get 10% off
What song describes your disc golf game?
One of my favorite warm up song is “The Heat by Jungle”, it has a funky beat, and always puts me in a good mood.
If you could only throw hyzers or anhyzers for the rest of your life which shot would you choose?
You have competed in the National Collegiate Disc Golf Championships in 2015 & 2016 what is your favorite part of that event?
I love the team aspect of disc golf, I grew up playing team sports so being able to compete as a team is fun, and totally different than competing as an individual in Disc Golf. This event shows how knowing your teammates, and what’s in their bags is important. I personally feel that this is a great way to grow Women’s Disc Golf at a college level. We have 2 veterans going this year, myself and Bayli. Then we have 2 new girls who just started playing in January that are joining us. We are heading out to Georgia/South Carolina in just a couple weeks to defend our National Title, and hopefully bring home our 3rd consecutive win!
When was the first time you picked up a disc, and who were you with?
I first played the sport in 2003. A group of friends were making a trip from our hometown, Columbus, Ohio to Clearwater, Florida specifically to play disc golf. At the time I had never even heard of disc golf, but I decided to tag along anyway. When we arrived the first stop was at the Clearwater Disc Golf Store, where I purchased my first discs, a 162g Champion Leopard (the pearly stuff, old school), a protostar (wasn’t called that back then) DX Cheetah, a DX Eagle, a DX Spider, and a 11x Champion (CE) Aviar. The rest as they say is history, I’ve been playing ever since.
Sidenote: I really wish my dog didn’t chew up that Aviar
Do you prefer wooded technical courses, open long distance courses, or something in between?
Depends on the day, haha. No, but I prefer wooded, technical courses. I feel like they even the playing field for more players to compete.
What is your most memorable competitive disc golf round or moment?
It would have to either be the 4th round of the 2016 Amateur World Championships, or the final round of the 2016 Amateur Championships at Bowling Green. They were two of my highest rated rounds ever recorded at 945 and 939. For both of these rounds I felt everything finally coming together all at the same time. Those rounds are few and far between but you always remember them when they happen.
Photo credit: Tony Brunner
Do you think there will be a day when there is a tour for women’s disc golf tournaments that has enough stops on it with big enough payouts that touring can be a viable profession for women?
Absolutely. With more and more female-only events on schedule each year it’s only a matter of time. I feel like we, as women, need to make getting a women’s only tour a priority. We cannot continue to pay the same entry fees and spend just as much on travel as our male counterparts and only get paid, sometimes as low as, a third of the money/plastic as they do. Eventually it just doesn’t make sense financially and women will either return to playing locally, or even just casually, or worse give up the sport altogether. I certainly hope to see a tour for women only in the very near future and hope to be a part of it all.
Kristy at Disc Girls Gone Wild 2014. Disc Girls Gone Wild is one of the longest running women’s only tournaments, and a critical event in building women’s disc golf.
Forehand or Backhand?
Why not both?
If you had to provide 3 tips for someone who has been playing disc golf less than a year what would they be?
Find someone that is better than you and play with them as often as you can.
Shoot for par. If you shoot for par, the birdies won’t be far behind.
Have fun. The one thing that I have always told Miquiath (#76557), most folks that know me from tournaments know him, is that not everyone remembers who wins every tournament, but they do remember the great people that they want to play with again, and the people that they do not. Always try to be that person that people want to be on a card with.
Following tip #3 having fun with friends!
If you could have an official beer of disc golf what would it be?
Staghorn Octoberfest by New Glarus Brewing from the great state of Wisconsin, wouldn’t mind if a six pack made its way down to Ohio sometime this summer, wink wink.
We’ll deliver some Staghorn if we can Kristy!
Top 3 courses you have played?
Coyote Point DGC @ Lake Casitas, Ventura, CA:
Coyote Point photo courtesy DG Course Review
Idlewild DGC, Burlington, KY:
Idlewild photo courtesy DG Course Review
Legacy Trails DGC, Eagle Springs, NC
Legacy Trails photo courtesy of DG Course Review
Have you figured out how to get a hologram of yourself yet so you can attend all the disc golf tournaments you want?
No, but I have a team of scientists working around the clock.
Kristy’s team of scientists;)
You finished 2nd at the 2016 Amatuer Worlds in Madison, WI in the FA1 division, your 4th round you shot an impressive super hot 945 rated round, did you know your round was super hot when it was happening?
I knew it was good, it felt great, but I had no idea I was about to shoot the highest rated round of my career. As I said above it was definitely one of the most memorable rounds I’ve played to date and gave me a glance at what I know I can accomplish in the future.
BONUS: Watch Kristy in action at the final 9 of the 2016 Amateur World Championships:
What age did you start playing disc golf and how old are you currently?
I started in 2012 and I am 15
You are a very polite young lady, where do you get your good manners from?
My Mom and Dad taught me to be respectful to anybody, no matter who it is.
Hailey’s father Hart who introduced her to disc golf
If all the kittens of the world lives were on the line and you could save them by writing an essay or solving a math equation which would you rather have to do to save the kittens?
I would do both, just as long as the kittens will be safe.
You are a pretty magical and skilled disc golfer, are you a wizard?
Lol, I wish. I just practice really hard, I will never stop.
If you could have an official beverage of disc golf what would it be?
My official beverage would be a drink like Powerade, just not sugary.
Can you throw a 360 forehand and backhand?
Yes, I can. People think that a 360 forehand is impossible, but it’s not and I can do it.
If you could choose any disc golfer in the whole world to be your partner in a doubles tournament who would you choose?
I wouldn’t be able to choose between Jeremy Koling and Cale Leiviska. I have just loved to see these guys play in videos and in person.
Jeremy Koling photo via Prodigy Discs
Cale Levieska Photo via Wisconsin Disc Sports Association
What is your favorite course in Wisconsin?
My favorite course would be Rollin’ Ridge.
Hailey and her Dad Hart with the Mixed Division at Rollin’ Ridge Doubles Tournament March 2016
Hailey at the 2016 Silver Cup at Rollin’ Ridge Photo via Wisconsin Disc Sports Association
You are currently the highest rated amateur female in the state of Wisconsin, that is a great accomplishment for someone in their first year of playing competitively, congratulations on your hard work! At this time do you plan on attending Am Worlds in Iowa in 2017?
I want to play worlds, if possible, I will know if it is possible as we get closer to the event.
Any advice for other young ladies your age on how to get them playing disc golf or continuing to play disc golf?
Well, I notice there are not many youth players out there, but there are more and more coming along. My advice would be: you are playing disc golf just have fun. If you want to get serious then you need to practice, and practice, you can’t just expect to be good and not practice. Also, don’t give up right away just because someone is better than you doesn’t mean you have to give up. You must strive to get better so you can beat them later, just don’t give up.
Hailey cheering for the youngest Junior player at the Foxy Ladies Women’s Global Event in 2016
BONUS: Check out Hailey’s recent in the bag video, this girl knows her discs!
I first started playing in Fall 2007 when a friend who played occasionally invited me and my boyfriend to play a course close to both our homes over the weekend. My friend aced off a tree on the 9th hole. It was crazy! I couldn’t believe it! My boyfriend and I joined a local Tuesday doubles league soon after. I wanted to play well in league, so I started practicing everyday after work.
Since you spend much of your off season in California what are your three favorite courses in California?
You primarily throw forehand, when you first started playing and touring did you receive any criticism or comments from people telling you that you needed to learn backhand? And if so, how did you deal with those comments early on in your career?
I definitely got a lot of criticism for only throwing forehand. I had tried early on to learn backhand, but it was so much less natural for me to throw. I began to simply focus on finding a way to get a sidearm to follow backhand lines, rather than pursue learning the backhand skill, which had become extremely frustrating to figure out by that point. In addition, one time after several failed backhand attempts and too much verbal beration on my part, a wise fellow sidearm player once told me to just keep throwing sidearms…to do what works for me and forget the people who think otherwise. It’s difficult to work through criticism sometimes, but if you really know YOUR game, it won’t really matter what most people say. You can focus on what you need to do, where your weaknesses really are, and at a pace at works for you, not on someone else’s timeline.
Photo credit: Bill Baker
If a grilled cheese sandwich and taco got into a fight, who would come out with the victory?
I’m pretty sure the grilled cheese would just sit on the taco and smash it without much trouble.
We have noticed you often have at least 1 ear bud in when you are competing, assuming you are using an mp3 player to listen to music as opposed to a walkman or discman. If you were to turn on said mp3 player right now, what is the first song that would play?
Happy by Pharell
Any exciting new items planned for Cali Connection coming up in the next couple of months?
We just released a new ladies hoodie for the winter months and are looking forward to fresh designs for 2017.
If you could only play with 3 discs for the rest of your professional disc golf career which 3 would they be?
Any rituals or routines you like to do to stay calm, cool, and collected on the course?
Listening to music really helps me stay calm. I like to bust out a little head bob or booty shake here and there to keep my muscles loose too. 🙂
Congratulations on your most recent title of United States Women’s Disc Golf Champion for 2016! You worked hard to get to where you are and have plenty of accomplishments leading up to your most recent win. Any words of advice for players who are just starting to compete or to the gals who may think they are not skilled enough to compete yet?
There’s no such thing as not being skilled enough to compete in disc golf. There is usually a division for any level of player, whether they are new or seasoned. Disc golf is a sport that gives newer players the opportunity to jump in and try it out for a relatively inexpensive fee. In addition, success and failure are part of life, so don’t worry about it if you didn’t do as well as you want. That’s the fun part…figuring out why and how to do better. Disc golf is a sport where you win a few and you lose A LOT!!! Lol. Try not to attach your self-worth or much of your ego to your score….the fact that you are out there doing your best and having fun in really all the matters!!
Well young lady you came and sat at the picnic table with me and a couple of my sparkle sisters at the 2016 PDGA Amateur World Championships, I was impressed with your confidence, attitude and demeanor. You explained to me that you aren’t just Hope Brown, you are the Young Hope Brown:) Can you explain to our readers why they call you the Young Hope Brown?
First of all thank you for making me lady of the month! Second of all I am the “Young Hope Brown” aka “YHB” because about 1 ½ hours away from my home town lives another Hope Brown that plays in the Open Women division and when people hear the name they think of her. So, one time during a tournament a disc golfer named “CuTT’ made up a hashtag which is registered as
Have you ever met the other (older) Hope Brown? If so, have you discussed joining forces in a doubles tournament?
I have indeed met the “other” Hope Brown and we have competed against each other many times. On August 20th of 2016 we competed as doubles team to try and qualify for the amateur division for the USDGC Doubles event that will be held in September in Rock Hill, SC.
At what age did you start playing disc golf? Do you remember the first time you threw a disc?
I didn’t really start playing disc golf seriously until I was 7 or 8 years old. However, my dad has played since before I was born and I have been on the disc golf course with him since I was 3 months old. The first time that I ever “threw” a real disc not a mini was about 3 years of age.
Do you spend your summer vacation from school playing disc golf? Do you play all year?
I do play during the summer months. However, it is not always the most pleasant when it gets supper HOT! One time I was complaining about the heat and my dad poured his water bottle over my head to cool me off. I do play all year round no matter the weather (preferably no rain unless in a tournament) even though it may get to some uncomfortable extremes.
Do you have other hobbies or sports you play outside of disc golf?
I really don’t play a lot of other sports except for dance and archery. I dance and shoot archery for my school and love every minute of it especially dance.
If you could have an official candy of disc golf what would it be?
If it was a hard type candy then it would be Jolly Ranchers, but if was a chocolate type candy if would have to Kit Kats.
What is your favorite driver, midrange and putter?
All players have their strengths, some are incredible putters, others have mastered the
art of parking their upshot under the basket, and some can just really crush their drives.
What would you say is your best strength as a disc golfer?
My biggest strength I would have to say is my driving. My max distance I’ve ever thrown if about 330’ and that was my recent milestone that I hit. My biggest weakness is a back hand roller, I’ve never landed one in front of me.
How did you feel when you won the 2016 Am World Championships in Madison, for the Junior III Girls (12 and under)? Do you plan on attending the 2017 Amateur World Championships, in Quad Cities, IA?
Honestly, I was really surprised. I was unaware that we wouldn’t have a finals and we finished at Bird Ruins and turned in the card and the course Marshall said congratulations. I was confused because I thought we were playing a finals the next day. I didn’t cry at the ceremony but when were eating I didn’t know what to do because after not winning my first worlds in 2015. I set a goal for myself to win worlds and that was my only goal leading up to worlds 2016. Once that was accomplished I remember feeling sad and I didn’t know what to do going forward. My dad simply told me “Let’s go get ready for next year, you gotta defend your title…right?”
Do you have any words of advice for young ladies (10-14 years old) who may be just starting to play disc golf?
I would definitely say keep trying and believe in yourself. I know it sounds really corny but it’s true. It’s easy to get frustrated (trust me I know) but it really helps to take a deep breath and channel all your emotions into getting better for the next time.
When was the first time you heard about disc golf?
The first time I heard about disc golf was from my daughter Gina, her new boyfriend (who is now her husband) played disc golf and she thought it was something I would like.
When did you first start playing disc golf?
I threw my very first disc at Token Creek, in Madison, WI the end of August 2009. I was living and working in Madison, WI at the time. I leased a parking spot and the guy (Jason Humphrey) who worked there started talking about this sport called disc golf. My mind goes “hey Gina mentioned this sport to me”. I fell in love with the sport from my very first not so good throw.
It’s never too late to start playing, right?
That’s right Jenny I was 54 when I threw my first disc.
You are one of the most stylish golfers we know, always looking sharp, and vibrant, what is your favorite gear to play disc golf in?
A smile 🙂
What is your most memorable disc golf vacation?
Hands down the 2011 Disc Golf Cruise, yes friends there was such an event.
What advice do you have for someone who wants to start playing disc golf, or who just started and is new to the game?
Don’t get discouraged and remember to always, always have FUN!
If you could have an official candy of disc golf what would it be?
DOTS of course!
What are your top 3 favorite courses in Wisconsin?
I was working at a pizza place and all the guys went out to play and didn’t invite me so I went out the next day, bought my own discs and practiced my butt off so I would be able to beat those guys!
We did a little PDGA stalking (cause what good disc golf addict doesn’t) and looking back at your ratings history you had a pretty high rating at the beginning of your career. Did you play casually before playing tournaments or is it natural talent and understanding of how disc fly?
I only played casually for a few months before trying my first tournament. I was instantly addicted to the competition (I finished last), the new friendships and the whole inviting atmosphere that I found. I took practice to the extreme and would go out several times a day until I couldn’t throw anymore.
What are your top 3 favorite courses you have played in the United States?
Flip City, Shelby, MI – the course that taught me how to be a golfer and showed me the supportive network that disc golf embodies.
De Laveaga, Santa Cruz, CA – challenging and beautiful with a rich history.
Any Course, Any Town, USA – I find beauty in any course I’m on. I love seeing new shots and I believe that any and every course has the ability to teach a golfer new things.
“They” say little girls are made of sugar and spice and everything nice. Is it fairly accurate to say that most disc golf girls are made of beer and cheer and have nothing to fear?
Haha! I can definitely attest to the strong community of disc golf sisters. With all of our combined support and encouragement, we can be a part of fearlessly growing our divisions.
Speaking of beer, if you had to choose an official beer of disc golf what would you choose?
I’d go for one of the huge companies like Budweiser. The bigger endorsements the better for the game! I might not drink much of it though.
If someone were to travel to Michigan for a disc golf road trip, what are your 3 must play courses in the Mitten (Michigan)?
Flip City, Shelby, MI – a true disc golf experience where you can see and feel the love that is disc golf.
Mason County Parks, Beauty, Beast and Goliath, Ludington, MI – all the golf you can take with lots of elevation changes and views of Lake Michigan.
Toboggan, Milford, MI – extreme golf, long, challenging and a workout!
Will the Detroit Lions ever win the Super Bowl?
Probably not in my lifetime. But I don’t want to say never!
If Discraft said you could only play with 3 discs for the rest of your career on their team, which 3 discs would you choose?
Soft APX-a reliable putter
Buzz- the best mid range on the market
Crank- a driver that can handle almost any weather condition.
How is Scratch?
She is a little jealous of her human sister but she is learning that the baby is always a good place to find snacks!
You are a young disc golf mamma:) Any advice for expecting mothers in regard to playing while pregnant? Any additional advice for mom’s who play disc golf?
Playing pregnant was tough. Sometimes just walking was a challenge but I kept reading articles about how important exercise is while pregnant so what better outlet than disc golf? I played until I felt I could no longer (about 9 months) and had an easy delivery that I attribute to the regular exercise. I would never have been able to golf so much during my pregnancy, or even now, without the unending support and encouragement from my husband.
When did you first become aware of the sport of disc golf? When did you first start playing?
I first became aware of disc golf roughly in 2002. I used to walk around Maple Hill and Pyramids in my hometown of Leicester Massachusetts and watch friends play. I had not, however, seen another female throw so even as a seasoned athlete I was tentative to try. I picked up my first disc nearly 10 years later in November 2011, and it changed the course of my entire life.
As a physical education teacher what are your favorite activities to teach?
Of course I love to teach disc golf, but I also focus a lot on Team Building and Project Adventure activities. I feel this generation is slowly losing the abilities to communicate effectively, respect one another and cope with negative emotions. I try to incorporate lots activities that foster teamwork, cooperation, problem solving and critical thinking.
You are involved in a very active team event that goes all winter in the New England area, can you explain the format and give us a basics of how the New England Team Challenge works?
I will try my best to give you the Cliff’s Notes. 🙂 New England Team Challenge will be finishing its 11th season on April 9. It has grown exponentially in recent years and now the league includes 36 teams though 4 pools (A, B, C, D). Typically teams consist of 18-20 men and 1-3 women. Teams travel throughout New England and New York to compete once per month from October through April. The home team is responsible for providing a lunch & beer spread for the visiting team. Each challenge consists of two rounds; first round is singles match play (a la Player’s Cup) and second round is doubles stroke play. A win in match play is worth one point, and in the event of a push (tie), each team earns .5 point. A win in doubles stroke play is worth two points, and all ties must be played off until there is a winner. Finals takes place every year on the second Saturday of April. Each Pool has a final event that determines which teams will advance to the higher Pool next season (or determine an A Pool Champion), and teams who do not qualify are automatically relegated to the next lowest Pool.
All of this fun, winter season New England golf could not be possible without all of the countless volunteer hours by Commissioners, Team Captains and the dedicated disc golfers who play in 3+ feet of snow, freezing cold, wind, and other unimaginably miserable conditions in which we suit up and march into battle with smiles on our faces. It is so special to be part of this and I am forever grateful.
What was your first disc that you fell in love with?
Discraft Buzzz because it was the first disc I could actually throw straight.
If you could have a tee off song for the beginning of each round in a 3 round tournament what would your first round tee off song, second round tee off song, and final 9 tee off song?
1 Incubus – Make Yourself
2 The Used – Box Full Of Sharp Objects
3 Bush – Machinehead
If you could have an official beer of disc golf, what would it be?
What disc golf events are you looking forward to the most in 2016?
I am most looking forward to the first New England Women’s Tournament Series in 2016. It is a series of women’s only tournaments throughout New England & New York with an aim to continue growing women’s participation in our area. We hope this may also encourage membership into our local organization, the New England Flying disc Association (NEFA) and the PDGA. The two events in this series I am most excited for are the Women’s Global Event at Maple Hill and the USWDGC in Sabattus ME.
What advice do you have for a female who may know about disc golf but hasn’t got up the nerve to try it out yet?
The number one advice I have is to play with other women. Sure you can play with your boyfriend and his buddies, but that will more likely be discouraging than encouraging. Women are most often unable to replicate what the guys can do on the course. Sure they can help us with parts of our game, but the learning really happens when playing with and watching women.
Don’t know any women who play? Locate a women’s league. Don’t have a women’s league? Start one. Build it and they will come.