One must also realize that Steve's point on this topic is very jaded from his own vision. TO belittle the companies as he did in the article isn't the best way to attract them to help.
I also don't like how he ignored KC in the list of events and included the information that he is looking to distract from. Here are some actual numbers from last year's events that he referenced, as well as the amount of payout (vary's from his comment's)
|Event||KC ||Total||Steady Ed||Total||Beaver Fling||Total||Worlds 09||Total||Field Paid||Worlds 12 Entries||Total||Field Paid|
|Sr. Grand Masters||3||610||3||450||3||475||15||3750||15||26||6525||11|
As you can see the Wide Open is above in most areas, as well as lower attendance. Steve likes his favorites, and I get that, but to pontificate as a person that has access to Vibram isn't the same as the people that volunteer to run events which all events he mentioned do. This is Steve's FT job, god love him for it, but lets not take this as gospel.
I also do think that pay-to-play is going to be about the only way that we see a different landscape for the sport. The mention of the sport and growth by folks in P&R and the sustainability of the parks by the disc golf community is a product of not equal sums.
We haven't grown as much as a community as the courses. We don't have the numbers in the club of people that do the work to support the growth, an increase of over 500% in courses over the last decade is matched by an increase of 60% within the club, that isn't sustainable. We need to have more members. If we had more members, and more accountability at the grass roots level we may see that swell. We would also see the need to have more "manicured" and well maintained locations to play that were free from the distractions of the current locations. That "aristocracy"
We will NEVER get to the point of ball golf, which is what I think you are afraid of. Ball golf was adopted by the aristocracy at a very early age. The wonderful part of the aristocracy is their utter unwillingness to change. Our game won't be co-opted by them and will always be a game of the common man. Any implication otherwise is lunacy.
Isn't the case, and I think that though there may always be free locations to play, that we progress to a point where it does cost money, and we as a local community help the touring pro with the coffers from the pay-to-play locations, and then in fact help to support the sport at a grass roots level. In the next year or five, probably not, but in the future I see that happening.
The sport needs more people to understand it and help it, it needs more people to step up and help to make it feasible for people to be professional at, and in all honesty, people need to be better today than they were just a mere five years ago.
Make no mistake, I love that Steve feels that this is right around the corner, the problem is that his math and formula's aren't accurate in his own article, and if we can't be accurate in the information, the misrepresentation of these things only helps to solidify that we aren't ready yet to make it.
Notice here that KC this year had less entries than those he mentioned, and our payout was larger than Steady Ed, and less than $2000 difference in Beaver (where they had 26 more players)