2019 State of GCDGA
By: Joe Godbey
In December of 2018 I was elected as President of The GCFDA. With the club trying to go tax exempt to reach new and higher levels, Adam Jones would not be able to fill that roll due to his part in owning The Nati Disc Golf Shop. I did not take this position willy nilly as I had sat in on a year of meetings to make sure this was something I could commit to fully. From day one as President I have been working on a couple of major projects to bring DISC GOLF in Greater Cincinnati to the forefront.
Project #1 was making the club a 501c3 tax exempt club. The purpose of this is so that in the future we can apply for grants to help with the courses, companies could also donate money and get a tax write off, and in the new rules from PDGA you must be a tax exempt club in order to bid for the World Championships. Currently we are in the final stage for applying for the tax exempt status. If you notice the club name has changed so that we have a fresh start. We are now the GCDGA. We have gotten our business ID number. We have gotten a new bank account. Once the old bank account is closed and all of the funds have been transferred over we will apply for the tax exempt status. That filing costs $600.
Project #2 is putting in a bid to host the 2021 Amateur Disc Golf World Championships. That project is approximately 60% completed as well. The host location, as well as the courses have been decided upon. Once my school job is finished, I will be sitting down with a couple others to completely write out the bid. We have until November to finish this process. We hope to hear good news in December so fingers crossed for us.
Now for the rest.
Let’s start with a big question that gets posted all the time? SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!
Currently the Club has 3 different accounts financially that we use. The checking account, a money market account, and a paypal. Between the 3 accounts I believe we have approximately 12 to 15 thousand at any given time. (I will be posting club meeting notes hopefully within the week on the website and at the top, it will show our money status on each account.) I know our business checking account needs to keep a minimal so that we aren’t charged a monthly fee. The money market we don’t touch and we let it grow. Those that know about those accounts understand. The paypal we have for when we do sign ups for the Flying Pig Open (and in the past pay different clubs and individuals for different things. Usually a reimbursement) But why are we just sitting on “all this money” you are probably asking?!?! First, we have to keep so much in checking to avoid fees. Second, we like to have funds in the account in case a park or city come to us and ask about a new course. As Adam Jones, Dan Bayless, Josh Terwilleger, and many others can attest to, installing a course with tournament level baskets it extremely expensive. We are talking thousands of dollars. We will assist in any way possible (responsibly) to get the course done. The chance may not come again so we must be ready to go when the time comes. Third, when hosting tournaments and events you have to have money up front to purchase supplies and pay fees. We are putting in a bid for the Amateur World Championships this year. Do you really think the PDGA will even consider us if we only had a couple thousand laying around?
Next question (taken straight from a response) What equipment and what courses does the club maintain?
I have seen this question asked a few different ways by several different people. (I’m sure I will get several follow up questions on this and I will be happy to respond to those as well.) RIght now there are approximately 30 or so courses considered in the Greater Cincinnati area. I will try and break it down into sections so that it is easier for me. Hamilton County Courses. This includes Winton, Woodland Mound, Miami Whitewater, to name a few. In the past we have had a great relationship with Hamilton county Parks. We (members) donated time and money to help the Parks out with the courses. In the past 10 or so years though the Parks seem to have lost interest in the disc golf courses. I know for several years Adam Jones has been trying to get a hold of them so that we can work on the courses to help improve them. I am now taking on that role (although Adam is still working his ass on it as well). Here is the catch with them. I have sent emails asking if we can go in to do work on the courses. I told them we aren’t looking for money we just want to go in, clean them up and get rid of that horrendous concrete around the baskets. Until we get the official okey dokey from the parks, if we go in and break up the concrete or trim trees or fix tee pads that is considered destruction of private property. I am not going down that road even though we have the best of intentions. City of Cincinnati Parks. Our main courses are Mt. Airy along with maybe a few others. The relationship that our former President Adam Jones along with Jason Kerl has built up with them is phenomenal. Mt. Airy is well taken care of and the maintenance in those courses are always top notch. Especially when a tournament is coming. Boone county Parks. Probably our most favorite (right now) parks system to deal with. They always seem to bend over backwards to help make the courses the best they can. From their work at Lincoln Ridge (Banklick), to Boone Woods, to Idlewild (along with amazing guys named Fred Salaz and Bill Alich) it seems like anything needed gets taken care of within a few days of asking. Fred Walks Idlewild frequently and handles that course while Dan Bayless is our “liaison” for Boone Woods and Lincoln RIdge (Banklick). OUT EAST. Oh baby here we go, the moment some people have been waiting on. Osage Grove: Anyone that has played that course and enjoys it owes the maintenance to the Chain Gang. No denying that they are “The Best in the Business” (although the “Burg Boys” may have something to say about that). For those that don’t know the Club is completely responsible for the initial design and installation of the course. Adam Jones and Andrew Miller spent thousands of hours out there going over the land, doing surveys and making sure that everything was going into locations with the best of intentions. The club also has an extremely large amount of money invested in that course. If we didn’t have the money saved up that we had at the time Osage Grove was conceived, it may have never gotten off the ground and have never happened at all. Williamsburg has come a long way baby. The work that has went into that course and the changes have really made that course something special. Whenever Troy or the guys have asked for something the club has always came through financially to assist.
Now for the rest of the answers about equipment and maintenance that I’m sure some of you are asking. “He still hasn’t answered what the club actually does for maintenance and equipment?!” Our goal as the club is not to go out and cut the grass of every course we work with and it’s not to provide every single piece of equipment necessary to keep a course going. For the courses already in existence it is to help with problems that may pop up from time to time. Maybe a basket broke and they don’t have money to replace it right now. Sure we’ll step in and help out. A weed eater blew and they really need a new one quick to trim something up before a tournament. We may help with that. But it is NOT to continuously buy everything needed to maintain the course. For new courses we will help out with initial purchases and if a club member is willing and available they will help with design and labor. We will help any course that needs it and asks for it(if we are allowed and able).
Thank You for allowing me to take the lead and become YOUR club President. I am trying to give as much spare time to the club as I possibly can. The direction of the club over the past 5 or so years has changed. I think we have lost focus on members and have had tunnel vision towards just working on courses, whether it be on improving them or installing them. We need to get back what really makes this club successful, the MEMBERS. I want to turn it into a pride thing and have as many members as possible. When we sign up for tournaments I’d love to start seeing our club affiliation as part of your name. If we are to grow and turn into the strongest club in the country (World) you have to be proud of what you are a part of. That is where I need to try and step up and do a better job. Whether you are a casual player or tournament player in the Greater Cincinnati area I want you to be a club member. The small fee you pay each year goes mainly towards improvements and to become part of something bigger than yourself. My job over the summer will be to build up the club and put a sense of pride back into the club.