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Thinking Out Loud: Missouri Loves Company

Most people are familiar with the Frisbee. We toss it around in the yard and at the park. Some people take their love of Frisbee to another level. This week on KBIA's Thinking Out Loud, Trevor Harris talks with local Ultimate players in advance of next week's major college Ultimate tournament happening here in Columbia.

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Credit Trevor Harris / KBIA
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A photograph of freestyle Frisbee players is one of the items in the State Historical Society of Missouri's Midwest Disc Sports collection.

Compared to football, softball and basketball, Ultimate Frisbee is a relatively new sport at the collegiate level. Major universities in Missouri have fielded teams only since the 1980s. Both the MU men's and women's teams are less than 20 years old. Team players are mostly undergraduates who come to the sport after high school sports careers in football or basketball. The Ultimate rulebook draws from those of other sports including soccer and basketball.

Tournament play brings together Ultimate teams from across the country. The 11th Missouri Loves Company tournament will feature 40 men's and 20 women's teams and an estimated 1,200 players. Events like the one to be held soon in Columbia generate flyers, other marketing materials and occasionally films. These memories now have an official home. The State Historical Society of Missouri hosts the Midwest Disc Sports Collection. As developer of the collection, Peter McCarthy curates a growing trove of event flyers, disc marketing materials and correspondence with Wham-O executives. Wham-O introduced the Frisbee to the consumer world in 1957.

Listen to Thinking Out Loud each Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. on 91.3fm KBIA and past episodes here.

Trevor serves as KBIA’s weekday morning host for classical music. He has been involved with local radio since 1990, when he began volunteering as a music and news programmer at KOPN, Columbia's community radio station. Before joining KBIA, Trevor studied social work at Mizzou and earned a masters degree in geography at the University of Alabama. He has worked in community development and in urban and bicycle/pedestrian planning, and recently served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Zambia with his wife, Lisa Groshong. An avid bicycle commuter and jazz fan, Trevor has cycled as far as Colorado and pawed through record bins in three continents.
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