Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Crazy Golf in Luton - Charity Fun Day at Kent Athletic Club - 9-hole Minigolf

On the 29th August 2011 we headed to the Bank Holiday Charity Fun Day organised by the Kent Athletic Club at their club grounds on Tenby Drive in Luton, Bedfordshire.


One of the activities at the fundraising event for Macmillan Cancer Support was a 9-hole Crazy Golf course. The course became the 267th played on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.


In playing the course, Emily and I contested the Irregular Mini Golf Tour Kent(ish) Invitational Tournament title with the victory going to me with a score of 34 to Emily's 42.

At Kent Athletic Club (Luton)

The Crazy Golf course laid out on the football pitch of Kent Athletic FC

Putting on the temporary Crazy Golf course

Great to see a windmill obstacle on the Crazy Golf course

Emily plays a shot on the Minigolf layout

The holes on the course were very small indeed

I also won two prizes in three goes on the Tombola!

Winning

I have no idea why the Kent Athletic Club is so called and how it came to be in Luton!? Their website does say they have been established for over 50 years though. In competition Miniature Golf there is a Kent Minigolf Club.

Related blog posts:

Link:

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Four Years and Eleven Months of Crazy Minigolfing!

As of today we've been on a Crazy World of Minigolf Tour for four years and eleven months!


Back on the 30th September 2006 we played what would become course #1 on our tour, the Victory Trail Adventure Golf course at Southsea's Seafront Treasure Island.

Any suggestions for how we should celebrate the five year anniversary of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour gratefully received!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Hillbilly Shooting Shack in Portobello & Joppa - Edinburgh's seaside

While on our mini-holiday to Edinburgh we found a Hillbilly Shooting Shack in one of the two amusement arcades in Portobello & Joppa.

Hillbilly Shooting Shack in Portobello & Joppa



Other blog posts about Shooting Shacks

The amusement arcade looked like it used to be much bigger and we also found a sign that pointed us in the direction of the now non-existent Fun Park.

Funpark in Portobello & Joppa

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Musselburgh Miniature Golf Links (Pitch & Putt) - Fisherrow Links

On Sunday 21st August 2011 Emily and I were having a wander from our hotel in Brunstane, Edinburgh heading towards the seaside at Portobello & Joppa. Our first stop was at nearby Musselburgh where we found a Miniature Golf Links course at Fisherrow.

Fisherrow Golf Links in Musselburgh

Fisherrow Golf Links in Musselburgh

Fisherrow Golf Links in Musselburgh

The course was a Pitch & Putt variety of Miniature Golf and there was a couple of large groups on the first few holes so we decided to give playing it a miss. However on a return visit we'd very likely play the course as it looked in great condition with some interesting bumps and hillocks.

Fisherrow Golf Links in Musselburgh

It was £2.50 a round for adults.

Fisherrow Golf Links in Musselburgh

Fisherrow Golf Links in Musselburgh

Fisherrow Golf Links in Musselburgh

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No Crazy Golf in Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh

While in Edinburgh we were chatting to a stallholder at the Antique Market in the Grassmarket and she told us there used to be a Crazy Golf course in Princes Street Gardens.

We went for a wander through the park but couldn't find one.

Edinburgh

Edinburgh

We did however find the oldest pub in Edinburgh - The White Hart Inn, which was established in the Grassmarket in 1516. We sampled a few Whisky's while we were there too.

Edinburgh

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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Minigolf Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

During the break in the over 60s and over 50s British Cycle Speedway events taking place at the Edinburgh Falcons Club at Redbraes Park on Saturday 20th August 2011 we popped to the Powderhall Bowling Club, which uses one of its three Bowling Greens as a 9-hole Putting Course!

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

Time was getting on and as the course closed at 5pm the man at the course let us have a round on the proviso that we played quickly!

The Putting course was on a Bowling Green and while pretty flat was still fairly tricky in gauging speed and weight of the shots.

With time of the essence Emily decided she didn’t want to play so it was left to be a battle between me and my Midlands Minigolf Club team mate (and fellow 2008 BMGA British Club Champion) John ‘Thighs’ Moore.

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

After eight speedy holes, with the man watching us as he collected the flags in after we’d completed each hole, the scores were level with me and John scoring 3, 2, 3, 3, 3 2, 2, 2 and 3, 3, 2, 3, 3, 2, 2, 2 respectively.

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

I was first up to play the ninth hole and scored a dreadful four. John, the 2006 BMGA British Champion, stepped up and scored a two to take the victory 22 to 24.

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

Putting Green at Powderhall Bowling Green, St Mark's Park, Edinburgh

The course at St Mark’s Park was the 266th played on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.

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Cycle Speedway in Edinburgh - The British Veterans over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships

Blog post about spectating at a Cycle Speedway in Edinburgh - The British Veterans over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships in August 2011.

On Saturday 20th August 2011 we flew to Edinburgh for a nice weekend away. We’d managed to get the flights on easyJet incredibly cheap via a very good use of our Nectar Points and with us being on the first flight of the day we arrived in the city centre at 8.30am.

Ahead of the trip we’d spoken to our friend, Midlands Minigolf Club team mate and minigolf rival John Moore who told us he was also going to be up in Edinburgh on the Saturday and that he was heading to a great sporting event – Cycle Speedway!

Ever on the lookout for new and unusual sports to take part in, or spectate at, we met up with John and headed to Edinburgh’s Redbraes Park (home of the Edinburgh Falcons Club) and the British over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships of Cycle Speedway!

The British Veterans over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships of Cycle Speedway

With ‘Tapes-up’ at 2pm we arrived in time to see the introduction of the riders who would be competing in the first event of the afternoon, the over 60s Individual British Championships.

The British Veterans over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships of Cycle Speedway

According to the Edinburgh Falcons Cycle Speedway Club website the sport of Cycle Speedway came into being in the late 1940’s and grew out of Motorbike Speedway. Races take place on oval tracks 60-90m long and racers ride around the circuit in an anti-clockwise direction. In each race four riders race each other over four laps with the winner picking up four points, runner-up three, third-place two and fourth place picks up one point.

The British Veterans over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships of Cycle Speedway

There was some great strategy in use in the races with riders battling to get the best of the track positioning and a few restarts due to some physical contact between riders. We saw a couple of crashes too. The event was great fun and free to attend! There were programmes for sale as well as T-shirts, along with refreshments. If you’ve never been to a Cycle Speedway event (and I’m guessing a lot of readers haven’t) it’s well worth a watch.

Full results and report from the British Cycle Speedway over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships

Edinburgh Falcons website

Photos from the over 50s competition

Photos from the over 60s competition - with us here and here

The British Veterans over 50s and over 60s Individual Championships of Cycle Speedway

During the interval between the over 60s and over 50s events we went to a nearby pub for a quick drink and then on to St Mark’s Park and the Powderhall Bowling Club, which uses one of its three Bowling Greens as a 9-hole Putting Course! This would become the 266th Miniature Golf course played on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour!

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Saturday, August 27, 2011

Replay of Bedford's Russell Park Putting Green (Mini Golf)



I was in Bedford recently so took the opportunity to have a replay of the very testing 18-hole Putting Green Miniature Golf course in the town's Russell Park.


Last time out I scored a 48(+12), with a hole-in-one on the 15th hole and this time I scored a slightly better 46(+10) and an Ace on the 14th hole.


The course became the 184th played on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour last July.


The course is in excellent condition with good equipment and scorecards. The price has risen slightly from £2.35 to £2.50 for adults.

I also noticed that they have a Table Tennis Table similar to the one in Luton's Wardown Park (see here & here), except with the one in bedford you can hire Bats and Balls from the Kiosk (£1.70 per hour) rather than bringing your own.


More from the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.

Friday, August 26, 2011

From the Minigolf Archives - Results of our first-ever game of Adventure Golf against each other!

Following a recent dig through some boxes of thingamajigs, whatchamacallits, doobries and other assorted pieces of ephemera in our 'Archives' we unearthed a lost piece of pre-Crazy World of Minigolf Tour information!

The item in question was the long-lost scorecard from the very first game of Miniature Golf Emily and I ever faced off against each other in. A fine piece of ephemera for the Crazy Golf Museum perhaps...

Minigolf scorecard from Adventure Island Adventure Golf in Southend-on-Sea

From what we can remember we played the match using 'classic' Crazy Golf rules, that is to say both of our golf balls were in play at the same time, with the player whose ball was furthest from the hole taking their next shot first.

In the 9-hole contest Emily defeated me by three shots, scoring a 28(-2) to my 31(+1). Again as these were the days prior to knowing the 'proper' competition rules of Minigolf we used the course's Par rating which stood at 30 strokes.

Minigolf scorecard from Adventure Island Adventure Golf in Southend-on-Sea

Following the 2003 match in Southend on Sea we also played a round on the old Arnold Palmer Putting Course at Butlins Holiday Camp in Minehead in 2004, however the results of this contest remain lost in the ether.

In 2006 Emily and I made a resolution to visit as many UK seasides as possible, our first stop was in Portsmouth and Southsea where we played the course that would become #1 on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour - the 9-hole Victory Trail course at the Treasure Island Adventure Golf Complex on Southsea Seafront. We followed this up the next day with a match-up on the Warrior Trail and since then we've made visits to over 410 Miniature Golf, Crazy Golf, Mini-Golf and Adventure Golf courses on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour, played in loads of Minigolf Tournaments on the BMGA Tour, won three Great Britain International Caps and in May 2011 Emily became the the WMF Women's World Adventure Golf Masters Champion!

We haven't done too badly on our Grand Tour of the UK's coastal resorts either, having visited over 135 seasides to date.

We have visited Southend on Sea a number of times since 2003 and on each occasion we've tried to play at least one of the three Minigolf courses in the town. Our first visit to the courses as part of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour was on the 31st March 2007 when the Inca Course became #14, the Aztec #15 and the Arnold Palmer Crazy Golf course along the seafront became #16 played.

Related blog posts:
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
Ephemera

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Wonderputt - A New Minigolf Computer Game...

...and the best one I've played to date.

As a follower of all things Minigolf-related I follow the Arts & Animation Studio Damp Gnat on twitter - the reason, they developed a Minigolf Computer Game called Adverputt a while back.

According to the Damp Gnat website their "current focus is on developing premium online games with a strong emphasis on design, quality and innovation." and with their new Miniature Golf game they certainly have delivered on that focus.

Wonderputt is played out on a changing landscape and features a variety of holes and obstacles that stand in your way to reaching the final Rocketship 18th-hole.

I really liked the way the ball reacted and the controls were very easy to pick up. Some of the holes were quite tricky too, but were well thought out and there are some great hole-in-one opportunities available.

The game is the best Minigolf/Crazy Golf computer game I have played to date and definitely has replay value.

By the way, my first score was 67,516 points and an impressive (even if I do say so myself) 13-under par, in a game that lasted 8 minutes and 4 seconds. I love the fact it gives you a bunch of stats at the end of the game.

Play Wonderputt

Play Adverputt

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Me and My Many Minigolf Doubles Partners

On the 17th of May 2008 I teamed with Emily Gottfried in my first-ever Minigolf Doubles Match at the 2008 BMGA British Doubles Championships at Warwick. In that contest we lost the 18-hole matchplay match 2&1 to the duo of Sean Homer and Marion Homer, aka Casual Force.

Since that event I have teamed with 15 other players, using a total of 19 different team names. Some of these partnerships have lasted little more than one match, while others such as my pairing with Kevin 'Max' Moseley have lasted for two BMGA Tour Doubles Contests and were the third-placed team at the 2010 BMGA British Doubles Championships.

In official competitions this season I have teamed with Oliver 'The Machine' Florence as 'Go With The Flo' at the Green Doubles Championships (7th of 14 teams), Will 'Power' Collins at the Lost World Adventure Golf Pro-Am Classic (2nd of 12 teams) and with Scott 'Donkey Gringo' Lancley as 'Team Sqonkey' at the BMGA British Doubles Championships (7th of 14 teams).

To date I've teamed up for Minigolf Doubles Matches with the following players:
1 Emily Gottfried
2 Matt Smith
3 Andy Gonsalves
4 Owen Johnson
5 Paul Johnson
6 Kevin Moseley
7 Chris Harding
8 Simon Hall
9 Leo Kukielka
10 Christopher Gottfried
11 Alan Norman
12 Oliver Florence
13 Julio Kent
14 Richard Skeggs
15 William Collins
16 Scott Lancley

My Pairings have competed under the following 19 Team Names!
1 Die fantastische Gottfried BrĂ¼der
2 Go With The Flo
3 Gottfried & Collins
4 Great Britain Internationals
5 Kent-Squire
6 Luton Wanderers Minigolf Club
7 Midlands Minigolf Club
8 Parts Unknown Minigolfers
9 Squire Trelawney
10 Team Sqonkey
11 Team Squire
12 The Champs
13 The Nar-Wich Union
14 The Pineapple Bits
15 The Prospectors
16 The Richards
17 The Rudi Specials
18 The Thumbmasters
19 The Vagrants

My Minigolf Doubles Matchplay Win/Loss Record currently stands at:
Played 62
Won 31
Drawn 5
Lost 26


My Minigolf Doubles Record (Click to Enlarge)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Johnsons of Old Hurst - Crocodiles, Ducks with Hairstyles and Gluten Free Food

Emily and I recently made a visit to Johnsons Butchers and Farm Shop in Old Hurst near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire. We'd searched online as we were in the area and wondered if there were any Crazy Golf courses or Gluten Free places to grab a bite to eat.

The search didn't turn up anything in particular on either of those points, but interestingly the Johnsons' site is home to a crocodile enclosure! So we had to make a visit...


Unfortunately it wasn't like the scene in the James Bond Film Live and Let Die where Roger Moore jumps over each of the crocodile's heads.

The Crocs were in their own enclosure, but it was interesting to have a look around the farm which is also home to Ostrich, Deer and Pigs!

The farm shop has a wide range of food and alcohol in stock, including a selection of Gluten Free products for Coeliacs. The Butchers stocks an array of meat, including Crocodile Tail Meat, which according to the packet "is like Monkfish"!

Right next to the Car Park is a Duck Pond with Ducks available to purchase.


One of them had the best hairstyle I've ever seen on a duck!


Unfortunately we arrived too late to visit the Tea Room which is wonderfully named 'The Eccentric Englishman Tearoom' - I'd have fitted in there!

Link:
Johnsons of Old Hurst website

Monday, August 22, 2011

Crazy Golf Update - People Play Minigolf on the Course in Camden!

While in London recently we walked passed the 9-hole Crazy Golf course in Clarence Way, London and for the first time on any visit to the course we saw people actually playing Crazy Golf on it!

We had a chat with the group who were playing a fancy dress minigolf tournament (which involved drinking too). Each players Putter had to be related to what they were dressed as, for example one player was dressed as a Baseball Player so used a Baseball Bat, another was a Janitor and was playing with a Broom, and another man was dressed as a Granny so used a Crutch to play with!

An interesting way to spend a Saturday and certainly one of the craziest minigolf competitions I've ever witnessed.


Visit to the course 2009

Revisit to the course 2011

The Crazy Golf Course Of Camden Town - article at Londonist

Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Crazy Air Squash in Great Yarmouth

The one and only sporting title I walked away from our weekend away in Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth was the winner of the Crazy Air Squash match at the Pleasure Beach in Great Yarmouth - winning 7-5 against Emily.


This was alot better than my last tournament outing at the Peterborough Boom-A-Rang Air Squash Championships where I lost against Rebecca 'The Fen Tigress' Evison in the Grand Final and my dismal performance in the Undisputed International Worlds Crazy Air Squash Championships in September 2010 when I crashed out of the tournament on the wrong end of a 9-nil defeat at the hands of the debuting German Crazy Air Squash Wunderkind Gerhard Zimmermann.

In total we found three Crazy Squash Tables in various amusement arcades in Great Yarmouth - perhaps this is where all the tables that used to be in Hastings were shipped to?

Hillbilly Shoot Out Shooting Shack at the Pleasure Beach Gardens in Great Yarmouth

While on our seaside break in Great Yarmouth I had a play on one of my all-time favourite seaside amusements, a Hillbilly Shoot Out Shooting Shack at the Pleasure Beach Gardens in Great Yarmouth.




Link to other blog posts about Shooting Shacks

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth

Back in June 2007 the Emily and I played our 25th course on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour - Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth.

At the start of the 2008 Summer Season the 11-hole course was changed from a Safari Golf to a Segway Grand Prix!

Photos from our visit in June 2007.

Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth

In our one and only match on the course I defeated Emily 28-30 on the 9th of June 2007.

Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth
Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth
Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth
Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth


Photos from February 2007.

Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth
Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth
Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth
Jungle Golf at the Gardens in Great Yarmouth
Link to more courses visited and played on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.

Visit the Pleasure Beach Gardens website for more information.

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