This post is on the etiquette of the party group. We have all seen the massive party group out on the course, carrying as much beer as plastic, loud, raucous, and frequently blind to the impact they have on the other golfers on the course.
Worst case I’ve seen was a group of at least 15, if not 20, at Condon Park in Grass Valley while playing with my golf partner Marc a couple months ago. This group was so loud we could hear it 6 holes away. At one point, I missed an easy lay-up approach because of the hoots and hollers – of course I should have refocused, taken a minute, and made the approach.
We finally caught up with them on hole 17 as they walked off the tee-pad right in front of us. I could tell that there were a couple responsible people in the group who were looking at us as if to say, “I think you guys should play through but unfortunately I’m in this huge group of douche bags.” They were so large it took them 15-20 minutes to minutes to play the hole.
When the same situation occurred at hole 18’s tee pad, Marc and I bailed. We played 16 holes in an hour, then played hole 17 in 20 minutes and were not going to wait another 20 minutes to play 18. Marc, not being the confrontational type, walked to the parking lot through a secondary route. I walked right through the group so I could express how irresponsible I felt they were being. I learned they were a local group that played there daily. They expressed no remorse about interfering with our round. Several douche bags were aggressive with me and made comments, in essence saying, “This is our course, you are an outsider, shut the hell up.”
I personally think we should be exactly like ball golf and limit groups to 4 or 5. Why do ball golf courses prevent groups of more than 4 or 5 from playing on their courses? Because it negatively impacts the enjoyment of the game by other parties. This is part of our definition of the goal of etiquette from my first post. We will always have the party group on the free courses; we play a pretty laid back sport. However, here are some etiquette guide lines if you find yourself in the party group:
Always, always let others play through. Stop and make sure every time you leave a tee that there are not people waiting on you. Be conscious of other groups in the area and do your best to keep the volume down. Do not, under any circumstance, scream and yell, unless you hit an ace of course. Pick up your trash; big groups get a herd mentality and sometimes we do things we wouldn’t normally. Most importantly, if you are in a group as in my example, police the group yourself. While I appreciated the knowing glances from the more conscious members of the party group, they should have expressed themselves and kept the other members of the group in line.
This type of behavior would never be allowed on ball golf courses. If we allow an understanding of etiquette to guide our decisions we can keep these attitudes off the disc golf course and elevate our sport to the gentlemanly class of ball golf. Enjoy your next round and remember:
Don’t be the douche bag on the course today.
Categories: Disc Golf Etiquette