Golf News for Friday, June 1, 2012 | Growth Of The Game

Inaugural Welcome to Golf Month program enjoys successful debut

Welcome to Golf Month, a new Play Golf America program held during May, was a success with PGA/LPGA Professionals giving thousands of 10-minute free lessons, orientations and Get Golf Ready clinics across the country.

These programs offered existing and new golfers and players of every age and skill level the opportunity to improve their game and have more fun on the course. Here are samples of how PGA Professionals are welcoming golfers and their friends to the game:

Wintergreen Resort-Devil's Knob, Wintergreen, Va.
PGA Professional Philip Licata and his staff have introduced two programs aimed at getting golfers on the course for quick, fun experiences. Wintergreen Family Fun 9 offers a 9-hole golf adventure using family tee markers. Wintergreen Try 3 starts with a 30-minute introduction to the game followed by three holes on the course ... all completed in less than an hour.

Reston (Va.) National
Through Get Back Into Golf and Ladies Night Out, PGA Professional Steve Loescher is conducting clinics, social networking opportunities and a fun scramble played with no rules, handicaps or even scoring.

West Pines Golf Club, Douglasville, Ga.
PGA Professional Mike Schlueter has created his own version of Golf 2.0 at West Pines Golf Club by offering a comprehensive four-week "beginners program." Each session included basic golf instruction, fundamentals on the Rules of Golf and Etiquette and other general information designed to help the new golfer feel comfortable on and around the course.

Griffith El Harris Golf Course, Greenwich, Conn.
Nine PGA Professionals in Greenwich have banded together in an effort to showcase a new initiative, Greenwich Golf Goes 4G, to grow the number of golf participants and, specifically to engage the lapsed golfer. The group played a 9-hole Tee it Forward format tournament, focused on the key messages that it's okay for golfers to play from any tees, enjoy the company of friends, meet new people, and participate in a healthy outdoor activity that you will be able to enjoy for a lifetime.

The Legends Golf Club, Franklin, Ind.
PGA Professional and PGA of America Vice President Ted Bishop and Judy Alvarez, PGA/LPGA, have introduced several new player development programs at The Legends Club. These included:

Family Tee Program invites beginning players, kids and seniors to play the championship course at a yardage that is both fun and fast. It also offers special 6-hole and 12-hole rates.

SNAG Golf is a concept that uses larger plastic clubs and tennis-sized balls targeting children that have never played golf.

KwikGolf offers the opportunity to play a 3-hole course. Golfers earn points based on how fast they play plus how many shots it takes to play.

Girls Just Want to Have Fun Golf Day, led by Judy Alvarez, a PGA/LPGA Golf Professional, offered a fun day of golf with girlfriends that included gift bags, instruction with PGA/LPGA Golf Professionals, 9 holes of fun golf, lunch, one cocktail and prizes.

Coral Ridge Golf Course, North Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
In an effort to retain existing members and recruit new ones at the private Coral Ridge Golf Course, PGA Professional Scott Fox introduced 17 new forward tees, as well as three tee options for women versus one. The facility also introduced Get Hooked on Golf, clinics for women and children that are open to both members and non-members.

About Welcome to Golf Month
Welcome to Golf Month is sponsored by Golf Digest, Nike Golf, and the PGA Center for Golf Learning and Performance.

Welcome to Golf Month is the perfect time for lapsed golfers to come back to the game; new golfers to try the game; and avid golfers to bring a friend to the game.

Consumers can find Welcome to Golf Month programs in their area by going to and can find a "Beginner's Guide" on how to get started in the game at