Wow! It's been a year since we appeared on ABC's Shark Tank, and what a year it has been! After years of building a foundation through adventurous golf courses and ambitious players, to get that kind of national exposure was exactly what we wanted and the timing couldn't have been better. We were ready and we've been going strong ever since.
The biggest takeaway has been that our mantra, and our very being, at New Swarm is that we are now Player Driven. Our first and foremost priority is just to get our FlingSticks in our players hands as they are driving the growth of this sport across the US, Canada and even beyond. To date, our players have reported back that they have played on over 1300 golf courses in 31 countries on 6 continents. And those are just the ones we know about. (They are going Wild about FlingGolf in New Zealand. Stay tuned there.)
Our players have developed new techniques, given feedback on official rules, and even as a community created new products that help improve the sport. They've reached out to their local press and gotten their stories printed, broadcast and shared through social media. They've volunteered as instructors and ambassadors to help grow the game and encourage each other to get better every day.
And it is because of those players, we are able to put on our first national FlingGolf tournament, the New Swarm FlingGolf Classic on May 21 and 22 at the American Classic Golf Club in Lewes, DE (the MOST rockin' golf course in the USA). We have top players coming in from 16 states and the Oneida Nation to compete in this 2 event tournament. The first event, the New Swarm Open is course play, with the winner taking home the New Swarm Cup.
The second day is the Longest FlingShot Championship (LFC2) where the strongest players will compete to outdo each other, using their BalliSticks, strength and technique to try to break the official LFC world record of 252 yards, set in LFC1 in 2019. If you are familiar with World Long Drive, you get the picture.
And how about this: ESPN reached out to us to partner on the Classic, and will be broadcasting it in the summer of '22! That's gonna be fun to see and even more exposure for the sport.
In addition to being Player Driven, and equally as important, over the last year our efforts to work with veterans, the adaptive community and to overall make golf courses more inclusive has expanded significantly. We have worked with the National Alliance for Accessible Golf, ParaGolf Canada, several coaches at The First Tee, Fairways for Warriors, Special Olympics Texas Chapter and Wounded Warrior Project, among others, to get FlingSticks in the right hands. All this allows more people a new opportunity to play in the fresh air and enjoy the camaraderie of their friends and families on a golf course.
Those efforts have been noticed as well, so stay tuned for a short documentary this summer broadcast by PBS detailing the growth of FlingGolf and its effect on increasing inclusion.
Lastly, we have seen our presence in the Military grow significantly over the last year, particularly in the Air Force. FlingGolf is now being played on 26 Air Force golf courses in the US, Japan, Germany and S. Korea. That means more Airmen and their families who live on base are able to enjoy the golf course at a great rate, which they otherwise would not be visiting. We are proud to say that FlingGolf and the crowning of a FlingKing team is now an official part of the Squadron Officer School at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama.
We've got a lot to be thankful for at New Swarm! Though it has been a year since Kevin O'Leary griped, "The golf gods will strike you down.", we feel more like the FlingGolf gods and goddesses are lifting us up at every step. There's nothing quite so satisfying as proving someone wrong!
And we are going to keep on doing it! Aim high and let it fly!