Looking around Fireman's Park, one might notice metal stands with chains hanging from the top that join in a cone shape at the bottom of a basket. 

While these aren't the prettiest decorations for the park, they are a part of the main attraction for many locals. People come and throw flat, round objects at the baskets from short, medium and long distances.

The  flying objects are actually discs used to play the sport of disc golf, a relatively new part of the park's appeal and culture.

Justin Bruce started playing disc golf in Graham four years ago. He played regular golf, but he was unable to pay the green fees. So his friend taught him a different version and Bruce hasn't looked back.

“I love it. I wish I would've found out about it 16 years ago instead of four,” he said. “It's just a great sport. It's addictive.”

When Bruce started playing in Graham, very few people shared his enthusiasm.

The baskets were homemade and he was usually the only person on the course.

In just a few years, everything changed. Not only are the baskets stronger and made of metal, but local interest in the sport has steadily risen.

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“Any given day you come out here there's gonna be at least three or four people. At least. No matter what time you come out. I love it.”

Travis Tracy heard about disc golf while he was in college in Abilene. Even though he didn't play then, he picked up some discs from the store two years ago and started throwing with other disc golfers at Fireman's Park.

In the last six months, Tracy said he's seen the number of people on the course grow from seven to 20 on any given day.
Ian Woosley throws a disc into the basket on a Monday evening. Woosley is a regular disc golfer at Fireman’s Park.
Ian Woosley throws a disc into the basket on a Monday evening. Woosley is a regular disc golfer at Fireman's Park. (Tori Cummings)


Ian Woosley, a regular disc golfer at the park, started playing in college in San Antonio when a friend introduced him to the sport.

“First time I shot poorly. I shot like a 29 over (par),” Woosley said. “Something about it, throwing the discs and everything got me hooked.”

The course at Fireman's Park is an 18-hole course and every hole is par-3, meaning it should take a maximum of three throws from the tee to the basket. Woosley said it's a good course for beginners or experienced disc golfers.

“I've been playing here for a year now and it's been a great course,” he said. “It's done no harm to my game or anything like that.”

Playing disc golf requires nothing more than discs and the desire to be outdoors. A good starting disc costs about $15, according to Woosley.

Like regular golf, disc golfers start from a tee which could be on the grass, concrete or a rubber pallet. The goal is to get the disc into the basket in the fewest throws or, to follow the golf terms, strokes possible.

Read the entire story in Wednesday's Graham Leader.