New PDGA Membership – Worth the $?

I have heard conflicting reports about whether or not to join up with the PDGA. While membership does have some nice benefits, it does come with a $50/year (with discounts for longer subscriptions) fee for the "amateur" level membership. As a service to my readers...and for some additional blog fodder, I decided to join last week. Here is a description of what came in the mail (about a week later).

- Membership Card w/ name and ID #

- Welcome Letter

- 2 Issues (and subscription) to Disc Golfer Magazine

- Mini Disc w/ ID#

- PDGA Bumper Sticker

- Discraft Stratus Driver (Black, PDGA edition)

- PDGA mini-rule book (presumably to be a stickler when you're golfing w/ friends)

- Access to posting on the PDGA DISCussion forums

The Good:

- Cool bumper sticker to show that you are indeed a better player than your buddies (or at least it looks that way)

- ID Card gets you hotel and car rental discounts

- Disc Golfer Magazine is actually very substantial even though it is only quarterly. I've enjoyed many of the articles

- A free disc is always good...right?

- Your PDGA ID# will allow you to start tracking and keeping your handicap status online

- PDGA members do get discounted entry fees at some tournaments

The Not-So-Good:

- A black disc is somewhat useless on a course

- I'm still having trouble posting on the PDGA DISCussion board. The mods have been absolutely zero help.

- Do you really get $50 worth of swag? No...not really

My take?

I doubt anyone is really joining the PDGA for the free stuff. I would imagine that most PDGA members wanted to help support the sport of disc golf and maybe start tracking their stats online . If you plan on playing a lot of disc golf tournaments the $50 could go a long way. However, if you are new to the sport and tight on cash perhaps you should hold off for a couple of years.

Me? I think I'll wait to pass judgment until the end of the year. If I enter a few tournaments and get to see my name on PDGA.com it could definitely end up being worth it.

What...you really didn't think I joined for the bumber sticker did you? (well...maybe just a little)

As always, happy disc golf travels.