Mayor Byron W. Brown and The Buffalo Olmsted Parls Conservancy bring hot new sport to Delaware Park with a Free Kick-off clinic Saturday, May 16th, at 10:00 a.m.
BUFFALO, NY — It’s golf with a soccer ball. It’s soccer on a golf course. FootGolf is the fast, fun, exciting game that is a hybrid of soccer and golf, and anyone can play. The Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy is preparing the course and layout in Delaware Park and will ‘kick-off’ the season this week.
Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy crew prepares the NEW FootGolf course in Delaware Park. Bob Stotz, Conservancy’s superintendent of parks, carefully place the 21-inch FootGolf cup.
FREE FootGolf Kick-Off Clinic
Saturday, May 16, from 10:00 a.m. till noon
To introduce this exciting new sport, the City of Buffalo and the Conservancy will host a free “FootGolf Kick-Off” clinic. The Buffalo Soccer/FootGolf Club will conduct a 30-minute clinic that will cover the rules and how the game is played. Team up with family and friends and play a round of FootGolf for free until noon.
Named an official U.S. sport in 2011, this is an incredibly entertaining game for people of all ages. The new phenomenon in golf – which combines elements of soccer and golf on a modified course – is quickly gaining popularity across the country. It is perfect for individuals, leagues, and family fun as well as corporate team building.
“We’re giving the classic game of golf a new spin by bringing FootGolf to Delaware Park in Buffalo,” said Mayor Byron Brown. “As Buffalo continues its transformation into a 24/7 live, work and play destination, the hybrid sport of soccer and golf adds to the momentum. I look forward to its debut in Buffalo and bringing a whole new group of people back onto the green.”
FootGolf as a game is played throughout the world in many different forms, but as a sport it is regulated by the Federation for International FootGolf (FIFG). The American FootGolf League (AFGL) is the exclusive member of the FIFG and governing body for the sport of FootGolf in the United States.
Currently there are no other FootGolf courses in Buffalo. FootGolf is played on a regular golf course where foursomes are integrated with golfers. The only change to the course is the addition of two cups, each 21 inches in diameter on the rough or the fringe of the fairways.
“We’re thrilled to bring one of the fastest growing sports in the country to Delaware Park and Buffalo,” said Stephanie Crockatt, Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy’s interim executive director. “The course has the perfect terrain for this new activity, and with such a spirit of adventure found here in Buffalo, we are excited to offer something fun and dynamic to the community’s recreational mix.”
Playing is easy! No need to bring clubs, no cleats and no goalie – just bring your friends, your feet, and your soccer ball, or rent a soccer ball from the Olmsted proshop. Starting from the tee box, players kick a regulation size 5 soccer ball along the course and try to sink it in the (considerably larger) cup using as few kicks as possible. The ball must always be kicked by the player’s foot – no rolling or dribbling allowed – the lowest total wins, just as in golf. But the best of all, prior experience in soccer or golf is not necessary.
Recently accredited by the American FootGolf League, the Delaware Park golf course has been aligned to allow enthusiasts to play nine holes or 18 holes of FootGolf without interfering with the Delaware Park golfers.
“The distances for the par 3, par 4 and par 5 holes range between 100 yards and 250 yards,” said Dave Hoover, golf operations manager for the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy. “We welcome soccer, golf and Olmsted Parks Conservancy fans of all ages to come on out and give it a try.”
What are the rules?
The game is played with a regulation size 5 soccer ball at a golf course facility on shortened holes with 21-inch diameter cups. The rules largely correspond to the rules of golf:
- Players must wear golf attire; no cleats allowed.
- Your ball must be easy to identify.
- Wait your turn. Make sure your kick will not interfere with other players.
- The ball must be played in a single movement. Your foot should be set separate from the ball, clearly behind before the kick.
- Wait to play until the ball has completely come to rest.
- Play the ball from where it lies.
Absolutely no cleats are allowed while playing FootGolf. Turfs, indoor soccer shoes and tennis shoes are all appropriate. It is recommended that players bring their own soccer ball as limited rentals balls are available.