Many players are completing the Disc Golf World Tour’s circuit of events that have spanned four countries and thousands of miles. But, did you know one volunteer has also made all five DGWT Stops as well?
Munukka traveled 4,644 miles to be here
It’s true, and his name is Yrjö Munukka of Espoo, Finland – the overwhelming winner for furthest traveling USDGC volunteer. According to Google, he’s traveled 4,644 miles, which translates into a 14-hour plane ride for Munukka, known as ‘George’ in the states.
“Except at home in Finland, everyone calls me George, even in Sweden they know me as George,” said Munukka, as he was prepping for his scoring duties prior to the first round at the USDGC.
No assignment is too small for Munukka
Scoring is where Munukka has spent most of his volunteer hours and at the USDGC he’s taking on the role of Metrix stats guru. Over the tour and past events, though, he’s done a number of jobs like spotting, cleaning – whatever it takes.
“Last year at the European Open, I was driving the shuttle between the hotel and the course and I met all of the great American players,” said Munukka, who can speak four languages.
Winthrop Gold coming to life after seeing it online
The first time he got to try out his English in America was when he volunteered for the DGWT Stop # 1, the La Mirada Open in California. Three World Tour stops later, Munukka now finds himself in Rock Hill, SC, at the Winthrop Gold Course – a place he’s only seen on YouTube videos. He said when he was taking a taxi from the hotel to the course he soon began recognizing Winthrop holes.
Traveling the globe for the DGWT has been pretty affordable for Munukka because he says he’s gotten good luck with airfare and the World Tour helps him out with lodging and meals.
Munukka, a bookkeeper by trade but currently unemployed, first found disc golf volunteering on the Internet before last year’s European Open. Plus, he donates his time in Finland at shooting sports competitions. “I’m not good at disc golf and I’m not good at shooting, but I’m good at volunteering and I speak English, Swedish, Finnish, and German,” said Munukka.
Meresmaa glad to have Munukka on board
DGWT Director Jussi Meresmaa said Munukka is always willing to help and he’s one of the most positive Finns you’ll ever meet.
“Obviously he’s traveled to all of the events, which I haven’t seen anyone else do. That’s amazing…He’s the Golden Rake winner for the DGWT season in my book,” said Meresmaa.