Where: Joseph Davis State Park, Town of Lewiston
Charge: $4 per car. The toll booth is open between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. There is no charge if you arrive before or after those hours. Also, after Aug. 17 tolls will no longer be collected, according to Cindy Harris, park supervisor.
There is no charge to play disc golf.
Directions: Take I-190 north to the Robert Moses Parkway north (Exit 25B). Then take the Pletcher Road exit. Turn left on Route 18F and look for the park entrance sign.
Other information: There are bathroom facilities. Dogs must be leashed. To reserve shelters ($30), call 278-1766. A disc golf league plays every Wednesday night; spectators are welcome.
When Kenneth Smith of Niagara Falls plays his favorite brand of golf, he really hits the links. The chain links, that is, that hang in a cascade from the top of a pole. Below the chains is a shallow metal basket into which he tosses a disc. Smith is a league player in the sport of disc golf, which devotees can play at Joseph Davis State Park in Niagara County, the only course in this area. It's a sport in which players stand 100 or more feet away, trying to fly a disc into the basket. Those who are serious about the sport, like Smith, use official discs that fly straighter and farther than the family-variety Frisbee. They have names like Typhoon and Cyclone and can be purchased at sporting goods stores. Just as in golf, specific discs are used in different situations, including a putter, which has sharper edges. But a novice can certainly get started in the game using any Frisbee that's kicking around in the toy box. The Joseph Davis course plays through weeping willow trees and some apple trees. It also has a few hazards that include bunkers and a hedgerow. Each hole is between 150 and 600 feet from tee to basket. "It helps to have wind," Smith said. "On a completely dead day, you won't hit much beyond 175 to 200 feet." It takes league players about three hours to play the course's 27 holes, Smith said. But casual players can easily walk onto the first tee and play for as long as they are interested. The park itself is quite pretty, well-mowed and maintained, with some plantings of red and white petunias. There are lots of picnic tables, grills and shelters that can be rented. There is also a baseball diamond and some swings and slides, and wide-open fields that can be used for pickup soccer games, Frisbee tossing or whiffle ball practice with golf clubs. A glistening pond is home to flocks of Canada geese and swallows. Also, there is a fishing dock on a picturesque spot on the Niagara River, where sailboats meander by and fishing boats search for perch and bass. There is no swimming allowed and the current is swift. But it's said to be a wonderful place to view the famous Canadian sunset.