On a normal golf course, hitting a golf ball through a house means you will have to pay the price for a new window. However, Kitsap County residents had the opportunity to hit golf balls onto roofs, through houses and on top of picture frames without breaking any course rules on July 30.
Putt Putt Clash, a single day mini golf event with 300 participants, took over Blackmouth Design’s, a design and fabrication company on BI, parking lot that day.
Putt Putt Clash was different from normal mini golf. 12 groups each created a hole that fits in an 8-foot by 16-foot parking space. The goal was to create a fun and challenging hole from scraps. Locals would pay $10 to play the 12 holes and vote on their favorite hole.
Bryce Moulton heard about this idea when he first moved to Kitsap County. Since then, he has been aiming to create this event.“There was this thing called Smash Putt in Seattle about ten years ago,” Moulton said. “What if we did that, but instead of Blackmouth trying to build a bunch of holes, we make it a competition and invite other people to build holes, and we host?”
Around three months ago, Moulton and Blackmouth Design began reaching out to the community. Some who created holes included Eleven Winery, Integrity Roofing and Clark Construction. “It doesn’t have to be fancy,” Moulton said. “It’s scrappy, we’re scrappy. It’s OK if your hole is scrappy because that’s the vibe.”
Blackmouth helped make the event scrappy by making wooden putters. At first, Moulton looked to buy used mini golf putters on eBay. However, he did not see anything he liked. “All I could find was some putters from China for $5 apiece, but I didn’t want to do that because it’s not the Blackmouth way,” Moulton said. “We use plywood and cut them. Then, we had to wrap the handles and customize them. It totally embraces the spirit of the whole thing.”
Moulton’s partner, Crista Dougherty, said she loved the scrappiness built into Putt Putt Clash. “For people to be able to do something that is scrappy is really fun,” Dougherty said. “I’m really excited to see everyone from the community come together because you see so many creative people around Bainbridge and Kitsap County.”
Dougherty built one of the holes based on her passion and job. She works at Julie’s Frame Gallery. When it came to building her hole, she decided to take extra scraps and frames from her work. After hoarding enough resources, she went to Blackmouth Design for a palette for the base. She spent a couple of weeks hacksawing, spray painting and air nailing the hole together. Although she did not win, she wanted to spread her passion to the community.
“My course is an art gallery wall,” Daugherty said. “I wanted to create something you see often, and something I’ve never seen on a golf course before.”
Clark Construction, which won the $500 first place award with 104 votes, took a different approach. The team brainstormed ideas leading up to the event. With a few weeks remaining, the squad began building Camp Clark, a forest and campsite mini golf hole.
Although their hole was innovative, that was not what set them apart. Clark Construction’s Shannon Campbell took the creativity aspect a step further by dressing up in a bear costume. “We started talking about the camp scene, and what’s a camp without a bear?” Campbell said.
As for the fans, they loved the opportunity to play mini golf on BI. Joe Hensley discussed how the event embraced the island’s untapped creativity. “The creativity is awesome and great to see this many people,” Hensley said. “It’s something that taps into what this community is about. It appeals to everybody. It is creative family fun. Hopefully, it will be an annual thing because this is something Bainbridge is into.”
Moulton said he would love to bring back Putt Putt Clash. “We are totally interested in doing that. We want to expand it if people are interested. It’s not a small thing to pull off,” he said.
Dougherty and Campbell added they would build another hole too. “I would do it again,” Dougherty said. “I would spend more time trying to think of things with multiple levels or elevation and tricky things.”
Campbell said the event will get bigger and the holes more extravagant. “We are going to go big or go home. This is only the beginning,” she said.