Class of 2021
Early Photographers and Videographers
The Special Merit category recognizes there are stories that need to be told to fully describe Ultimate and its history that don’t get captured in an individual award. When considering whether an individual, group, or piece of equipment should be recognized, the questions asked include:
- Can the history of Ultimate be written without including this candidate?
- Was the Special Merit candidate recognized in their day as being “special?”
- Can future generations understand the significance of this Special Merit candidate?
Prior to the mid 2000’s, the only reason there is a visual record of ultimate is due to the efforts of individuals who took it upon themselves to attend tournaments with their personal equipment and shoot the game they loved in expectation of little or no compensation. While there are many individuals who did this throughout the early days of ultimate competition, there are several individuals deserving of particular recognition for documenting the sport in its formative years and in showcase games. The following photographers and videographers are recognized in this class:
- Stu Beringer: Club Nationals 1980 – 1985
- Rick Collins: Club Nationals 1995 – 2004
- Karl Cook: Club Nationals 1980 – 86, ‘89 – 91, College Nationals 1989 & ‘91, Easterns 1981 – ’91
- Dan Hyslop: Club Nationals 1983 – 2002, Midwest ’82 – ’85, West ‘85 – ’92, top teams ‘83 – 92
- Chris Perry: Regionals and other West Coast events 1980-1987
- Scobel Wiggins: College Nationals 1999 – 2004, WUCC 2002
- Lee Flynn: hundreds of ultimate games and tournaments videotaped throughout the 1980’s
- J.R. Reynolds: Club Nationals video producer 1990, ’91, ’93, ’94, UPA training videos and media guides, and WFDF documentaries in ’92 & ’94
To view the full beauty of the work of these photographers, click on the individual photos. The website is not yet able to post videos.
Hometown: Savannah, GA
Born: August 20, 1955 (Age 67)
Stu Beringer began actively shooting ultimate tournaments beginning with the 1980 Club Nationals and ending with the 1984 April Fools Festival. His ultimate photography days came to an end when he entered business school and got married during the last half of 1984. The major tournaments Stu photographed during this time included:
- Club Nationals: 1980 & 1983
- Easterns: 1981 & 1983
- Northeast Regionals: 1981 & 1982
- April Fools: 1983 & 1984
Note: Stu’s photos (the ones he considers worth viewing) have been uploaded onto the Ultiphotos website. Check them out at https://www.ultiphotos.com/archive/glorydays
In the Spring of 1976, while in his junior year at Bucknell University, Stu began playing ultimate with the Bucknell Mudsharks. Notable teammates were future Hall of Fame members Harvey Edwards and Brian Murphy. After college, there were a number of fellow ultimate players in the Westchester, NY/Fairfield, CT area who came together loosely to play; this group ultimately formed the Dukes of Disc (an early name was Eastern Edge Ozone Throwers). The Dukes consisted mostly of University of Connecticut players with a few teammates from Bucknell and assorted others. Dan Buckley was the Dukes’ spiritual leader and later inducted as an “Appleseed” in the Ultimate Hall of Fame. Two future UPA Presidents were also teammates; Brian Murphy and Gary McGiveny (who drew the original Dukes logo for the uniforms before the team adopted their distinctive Hawaiian shirts). The Dukes spent their weekends traveling and playing together throughout New York and New England; wonderful memories that forever remain. More recently, Stu retired in 2018 and moved from New York to Savannah, GA, his wife’s hometown. “It’s absolutely wonderful here.”
Hometown: Victoria, BC, Canada
Born: September 26, 1960 (Age 62)
Rick Collins was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Canada and began playing disc sports in the late 1960s when a neighbour got a “Frisbee Horseshoes” set.
During his high school years, he organized and played “Frisbee Football”. After high school, RIck helped create and played a big role in the Calgary Cynics. He led the team to the first ever Canadian National Ultimate Championships in 1987. The Cynics were in the finals for the first four years of Canadian Nationals; taking second in 1987 and winning two championships in 1988 and 1990.
Rick was also a tournament organizer; he helped create and produce Ho Down, a large annual co-ed tournament and created the first league in Calgary.
When Rick moved to Vancouver, he continued to coach, captain, and play with various teams, including Furious George. He retired from competitive Ultimate in 2000 and enjoys life with his two boys and great partner, Canadian Hall of Famer, Cheryl Claibourne.
Rick’s career as a photojournalist began in 1991; he photographed Ultimate in an effort to stay involved with and give back to the sport.
Currently, Rick and his family live in Victoria, BC, Canada where he continues working as a photojournalist. In recent years, Rick has begun to play competitive disc golf with a plan to play at Nationals and Worlds soon. “You can stop playing Ultimate, but Ultimate is never out of your life.”
- Club Nationals 1995-2003.
- College Nationals 1999, 2000 and 2002.
- Worlds 1993, 1994, 1997, 1998, 2000.
- Canadian Nationals 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2000 and 2001.
- Various USA sectional, regional qualifiers 1995 – 2003.
- Various tournaments like Potlatch, Flowerbowl over the years.
Hometown: Centreville, VA
Born: August 2, 1956 (Age 66)
Karl Cook began his interest in throwing the disc in 1975 as a student at Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland doing trick catches in the quad while playing with Masters, Pro Models, and Super Pros. Frisbee World Magazine provided inspiration to learn fancier tricks and how to balance a spinning Super Pro on the tip of his fingernail. Karl was also taking his first Photography class.
In the Spring of 1976, a fellow student returned from winter break in California and introduced a team game called Ultimate; this was the beginning of Karl’s affection for Ultimate and his increased interest in photography. Advanced photography classes and his first photography job at the College newspaper, along with the key to the newspaper’s private darkroom, made Karl a “photographer”. This role instilled the ethical values and authenticity requirements of photojournalism, as well as his approach of capturing the reality of whatever had occurred.
1977 was a seminal year for Karl and his growing interest in Ultimate and photography. Larry Schindel, inducted in 2004 as an Inaugural Member of the Ultimate Hall of Fame, advertised in the Washington Post about the creation of the Washington Area Frisbee Club. Karl traveled to the grounds of the Washington Monument for the club’s first meeting where Larry introduced all the established competitive variations of disc play; Ultimate, Freestyle, Self-Caught Flight (Maximum Time Aloft and Throw, Run, and Catch), Guts, and Disc Golf.
Later that year, Larry and Bill Good, who worked at the Smithsonian Institution’s Air and Space Museum (A&SM), developed the Smithsonian Frisbee Festival. Wham-O’s Dan Roddick, and another member of the inaugural class of the Hall, brought many of the current and previous World Champions to DC to perform and give demonstrations for huge crowds on a field right next to the A&SM. It was then that Karl became an IFA member (number 78718).
Karl represented his Montgomery College team at the 1977 East Coast Captains Meeting in Maplewood, NJ at Columbia High School. Karl met the other team captains and learned a lot more about the game, spirit and rules, scheduled tournaments, and how teams needed to organize to play Ultimate.
With an Associates Degree in Photography acquired in 1979, Karl worked in a local photo lab, building the foundation for a career in photography. Thereafter, he worked as a photographer’s assistant and custom darkroom printer, and landed his first full time photography job in 1982 at a local TV station where he began working with computers to create graphics. Later photo jobs were at a graphic arts production company and then with a large telecom from ‘89-91 where he learned more about computer graphics using Macintosh computers; his first two disc designs were created on a Mac.
Having darkrooms as his “office space” enabled Karl to shoot lots of film that he could process after hours and get the results for only the cost of the chemicals and print paper. Karl’s playing career and photography career ended on Halloween in October 1991. Thereafter, he became a Computer Specialist, focused on computer graphics, desktop publishing, and systems management.
Teams and Organizing:
- Montgomery College, Rockville, MD 1977-78, player-captain. First tournament was Spring 1978 at the first April Fools. First game was against Glassboro
- WAFC, Washington, DC 1978-80
- Ultimate Air & Space, Washington, DC 1980-84
- Mid-Atlantic Sectional Coordinator for UPA 1983-85
- ICE (Illegitimate Children of Elvis) 1988-91
- Helped Eric Knudsen organize and run the April Fools Tournaments, including creating the programs, from the 3rd to the 14th annual event; 1981 through 1995
Ultimate Tournaments photographed:
- 1980: Club Nationals, Atlanta, GA
- 1981: April Fools, Mid-Atlantic Regionals, Ultimate Affair, Amherst, MA, Club Nationals, Austin, TX
- 1982: April Fools, Mid-Atlantic Regionals, Easterns, WFC All Star Game – Mid-Atlantic vs North East at Rutgers, NJ, Club Nationals, Austin, TX
- 1983: April Fools, Mid-Atlantic Regionals, Easterns, Purchase, NY, Club Nationals, New Orleans, LA
- 1984: April Fools, Mid-Atlantic Regionals, Mid-Atlantic vs North East All Star game, Club Nationals, Santa Barbara, CA
- 1985: April Fools, Club Nationals, Washington, DC
- 1986: April Fools
- 1989: Central Regionals, Mars, Club Nationals, Washington, DC,
- 1990: Easterns, Mid-Atlantic Regionals, Mars, Club Nationals West Palm Beach, FL
- 1991: Easterns, St. Louis Fools, WFDF Worlds Toronto, Club Nationals, Sanford, FL
- 1992: April Fools, College Nationals, Ft. Collins, CO
Hometown: Omaha, NE
Born: March 23, 1956 (Age 67)
Dan Hyslop started playing ultimate in 1978 with his medical school classmates at the University of Nebraska College of Medicine; Death Frisbee was the first ultimate team in Nebraska.
His first images of ultimate were taken during Death Frisbee’s trips to play in Kansas. In 1982, Dan started an Internal Medicine residency at Michigan State and joined MSU Ultimate. In addition to photography, he started recording audio of player interviews and team cheers. These recordings were combined with music to create soundtracks for the multi-projector slide shows he presented at the 1989, ‘90 and ‘91 National Club Championships. In 1992, Dan screened a show at the World Ultimate Championships in Utsunomiya, Japan.
While practicing medicine at Loyola Marymount University (LMU), Dan obtained an MFA in screenwriting from LMU in 2001.
To coincide with the 50th anniversary of Ultimate in 2018, Dan published a book of images he had taken from 1981-1992. Proceeds from the book were donated to Ultimate Peace. After 35 years serving as a university physician, Dan retired from LMU in 2022. “As far as retirement goes….someday, I hope to direct.”
- Club Nationals 1983-2002,
- Midwest ’82-’85,
- West ‘85-’02,
- Top teams ‘99-92
Hometown: San Diego, CA
Born: December 19, 1949 (Age 73)
Chris Perry caught the frisbee bug while attending Mesa Junior College in 1975. His enthusiasm continued as a fine art major at San Diego State University, where a (coed) group of players would gather on Sundays at the track field to freestyle and play Ultimate. The San Diego Free Flyers was formed and evolved rapidly. A competitive ultimate team was established and became a core activity of the club into the late ‘70s.
Chris enjoyed action photography and settled on shooting Frisbee events rather than competing. In 1980, UPA Newsletter editor/publisher Tom Kennedy encouraged Chris to send photos. Chris shot many tournaments in California and a few in Oregon and Arizona over the next six years.
Chris is now happily retired to the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State. He still likes photographing things that move fast, like birds in flight.
Tournaments and events shot: Regionals and West Coast events 1980-1987
Hometown: NY, NY
Born: January 1, 1954 (Age 69)
Scobel Wiggins’ ultimate career started in the year 1998, when her son, Ben Wiggins, found the sport the summer before he started college at the University of Oregon (U of O). It was the freedom he loved, and the inventiveness. He and Josh Greenough built a new U of O Ego, surrounded themselves with brilliant athletes, and taught her to photograph the game as they played their hearts out. Four years later, in 2003, they made it to the finals of Nationals, Ben and neighbor Chelsea Dengler Putnam had Callahans, and Scobel was hooked.
The whole family followed the Pacific Northwest, starting in wetlands where she says “They left wakes when they laid out” and going around the world as they tried new ventures. It was athleticism she caught in her lens, but it was the experience of stardom on the foot of Mt. Fuji, the vaporizing sweat in southern Taiwan, and the diplomacy they brought to poverty in Colombia that she remembers.
“Life was beautiful through my lens.”
It was the people she loved, people who made themselves and others better through sport. When she watches teams warm up today she sees the drills they created, hears words they first spoke, and she remembers their dreams.
Today, Scobel shoots NCAA sports for Oregon State University in Corvallis, OR, and gets asked all the time what her favorite is. “Ultimate,” she says. “It’s always ultimate.” There are two reasons why: “First, the heckling is second to none, and second, on any sideline you can float the question ‘How’s the research going?’ and get an answer.”
Tournaments and events shot; estimated about 100, including:
- USAU College Nationals from 1999-2007
- Club and Masters Nationals from 2003-2007
- WFDF Worlds 2002 in Honolulu
- 2008 in Vancouver
- 2009 World Games in Taiwan
Hometown: Santa Fe, NM
Born: December 14, 1951 (Age 71)
Lee Flynn was a founding member of the Santa Fe, NM “Sin Nombre” Ultimate team in 1978, and began videotaping tournaments shortly thereafter. He captured almost 200 games at dozens of tournaments across the 1980’s and early ‘90’s. He was also the executive producer of the professional, 4 camera coverage of the 1982 Men’s National Ultimate Championship in Austin, TX.
He has lived in Santa Fe since 1976, where he is involved in facilitating personal and spiritual growth.
Lee has shot hundreds of ultimate games and tournaments videotaped throughout the 1980’s and early ‘90’s.