Following a brief hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Lost Egg Classic disc golf tournament will return to Wayne over the August long weekend.
2020 would have marked the true 20 year anniversary of the tournament, though because of the cancellation, 2021 will mark the official anniversary.
“We had 140 entries open and they sold out in about 35 minutes,” says Craig Burrows-Johnson of the Professional Disc Golf Association. Burrows-Johnson is a disc golf course designer who has had a hand in numerous courses throughout Alberta over the last two decades, including the local course at Wayne known as the Alberta Badlands Disc Golf Course.
Participants previously came from across Canada and the United States to Wayne for the Lost Egg. However, due to ongoing travel restrictions, there will be no international participants this year.
Of the 140 participants who will compete in the Badlands, only one is local to the area.
Cameron White, owner and operator of Fire Coulee Discs, is the only local resident to gain entry to the Lost Egg. He notes he was initially put on a waiting list prior to receiving confirmation his entry was accepted.
Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, interest in the sport of disc golf has exploded. The sport is naturally socially distanced, and Burrows-Johnson adds--unlike traditional golf where there are green fees and expensive equipment--the start-up costs for disc golf are minimal, and game times are often much shorter in comparison.
As the popularity of the sport has increased over the last year, the Town of Drumheller has given the Drumheller and Area Disc Golf group permission to use the former CN Rail right of way--the greenspace across from the former Greentree Mall--as a temporary course.
Drumheller currently has two official disc golf courses, at Midland and Wayne; however, White notes a permanent third course is in the works, with Burrows-Johnson heading the design.
“The courses (at Midland and Wayne) are not beginner or mobility friendly,” White tells the Mail. He notes both courses pose unique challenges for players, which can be difficult for those new to the sport.
White adds, with a third course, Drumheller could host national disc golf tournaments, and Burrows-Johnson notes a national championship could attract upwards of 400 participants.
The Lost Egg Classic will take place at the Alberta Badlands Disc Golf Course Saturday July 31 to Sunday, August 1.
Lacie Nairn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Drumheller Mail