Discover Golfers Posts

Sunday at Tallgrass was bigger than just 1 qualifier

Leading up to our first New York qualifier we were told it would be impossible to get millennial golfers to give up their Sunday afternoon for a golf tournament, especially one that was run by two relatively new organizations, GolfMatch and Nextgengolf.  That notion, as well as the thought that golf is declining in popularity amongst millennials, didn’t bode well for us.

However, we learned something very encouraging on Sunday afternoon at Tallgrass Golf Club on Long Island. We learned that the future of golf is way brighter than people think.  52 millennial golfers showed up on what was supposed to be a rainy afternoon. Every golfer arrived at least 45 minutes before the 2:30pm shotgun, with one golfer leaving his vacation weekend in Rhode Island to take a 930am ferry, then drove from Connecticut.

The dark clouds faded into clear skies, the golfers played great, and we secured the first 8 spots  for the New York team in the City Championship against Boston. Colin Warren led the field with a 69, and our lone female participant, Brittany Ferrante, shot a 72. These weren’t just some young professionals coming out for a round of golf, these were golfers looking for a venue to both compete and have fun.

Virtually ever golfers stuck around after the round for drinks and food on the terrace, while we calculated the scores and announced the winners. The GM at the course made a point of coming up to us afterwards to say “we have never had so many gentleman in one outing before.” Not just golfers, gentleman.

Nextgengolf and their sister company NCCGA have hosted hundreds of tournaments for millennial golfers, so it was an honor for GolfMatch to be given the opportunity to Co-Sponsor this great event, which we hope to expand into many more cities in the future.

All in all, it was an amazing day, and an inspiring show of support from the young golfers in New York. It just goes to show that enthusiasm for golf is still very much alive, with companies like GolfMatch and Nextgengolf leading the charge for innovation.

Upcoming qualifiers:

Boston qualifier- August 2nd at South Shore CC Sign-up and details

NY qualifier -August 17th at Middle Bay GC Sign-up and details

The First Tee changed my life

In 1997 the vision of having an affordable golf program that also educated its participants on life skills was finally a reality.  Now with chapters in all 50 states, as well as internationally in countries like Ireland, New Zealand, and Canada, The First Tee vision has resonated on a global scale.

Back in 2001 The First Tee made its way to New York at Mosholu Golf Course in the Bronx.  My involvement began the following year when Eisenhower Park located on Long Island, became the 2nd official chapter of the First Tee in New York State.

The game of golf had always grabbed my interest, although I was involved in several other sports simultaneously.  My passion for golf really took off around age 12 when it became that one sport I wanted to take more seriously. The summer between 7th and 8th grade I enrolled in the Long Island Golf Academy at Eisenhower Park directed by Mike Wade, who was also the Director of The First Tee of Nassau County. Little did I know this would open the door to one of the most beneficial experiences in my life.

From that point forward I participated in both the Academy and The First Tee classes, eventually training to work as a volunteer while still in High School. Prior to this involvement I hadn’t understood or appreciated what it was like to work or have real responsibilities, so in many ways The First Tee was also my introduction to job accountability.

The First Tee played a large role in my personal life as well.  It motivated me to live healthier and has taught me countless skills I use on a daily basis. Without The First Tee I may have abandoned golf and most likely wouldn’t have incorporated fitness into my daily routine. My personal growth and life lessons that will forever be ingrained in my core are a direct result of my involvement in The First Tee organization. There is no doubt in my mind I will continue to grow as I mentor for the next generation of participants.  The First Tee is truly an all-inclusive organization demonstrating that although not everyone comes from the same neighborhood or background, or offered the same opportunities in life; everyone should be treated with equal respect.

Why You Should Start Playing Golf

If I was just starting out, or thinking about picking up golf, I would be in the same boat as you: scared, not sure where to start and intimidated.  Yes, it can be expensive.  Yes, it is difficult to learn. Yes, it is time consuming.  But, if you put forth the effort and time, you will be forever grateful.  In this post, I am going to try and convince you why you should pick up the sport I love so dearly.  I will also give you tips on cutting costs, ways to make the game more fun and lessons you can learn along the way.  Buckle up, here we go.

There will always be reasons not to do something, but here are the reasons why you should start playing golf, now.

Values.  The game is built on the foundations of honesty, integrity, competition and relationships. Golf is the only game in which you are your own referee, where you hold yourself accountable for choosing between right and wrong. It takes a special type of person to call a penalty on themself, even if it means losing the match.

Memories.  Some of my most memorable and heart-warming memories revolve around golf. I have never been more nervous in my life than standing on the 18th tee with a two shot lead, out of bounds markers lining both sides of the fairway, then needing to sink a slippery downhill left-to-right five-foot putt for my first and only AJGA victory.  Or spending my entire summer at the golf course- teeing off when there is still dew on the ground and finishing up 36 holes when the sun is going down.  However, I will never ever forget making my first hole in one on Mother’s Day while playing with my mom.  What a special moment that was.

People.  Golfers are some of the nicest / most well rounded people in the world.  Golfers are humbled by the difficulty of the game, willing to take on challenges, and used overcoming difficult situations.

Business.  There are more deals closed on the golf course than anywhere else.  As the old saying goes, “A bad day on the golf course beats a great day at the office.”

Leisure.  There are very few things more relaxing than spending part of your day on the golf course.  When I need to clear my head or spend time by myself, I go to the golf course.  It seems like everything slips my mind and the course becomes my therapist.  There are no deadlines or meetings on the course, just you and golf Gods.

Competition.  Doesn’t matter whether you are 5 or 85 years old, there is always a way to make golf competitive.  Competition will sharpen you game, introduce you to other people and teach you sportsmanship.

 Complaint #1:  It’s too expensive. 

I hear this all the time.  Someone goes out and spends $1,000 on a brand new set of clubs, then buys shoes, balls, tees, gloves, hats, shirts, divot repair tools, towels, socks, and the list goes on…  You don’t need that stuff.  There are many online outlets like ebay.com and 3balls.com, or golf stores where you can buy used clubs and balls. Then, you can use GolfMatch to find courses in your area at prices you can afford J

 Complaint #2: Golf is too hard to learn.

Again, something that is always said to be a negative, but it doesn’t have to be. Golf is a tough sport, everyone knows that, but who cares? You shouldn’t view the steep learning curve as daunting, but rather just find other individuals who are at the same point in the learning curve as you. Feeling comfortable with the other golfers in your group is key.

Golf has changed my life and made me a better person, no harm in seeing if it will do the same thing for you!

“Of all hazards, fear is the worst” - Sam Snead

First and foremost, I love this Sam Snead quote. It speaks volumes to the thought process of golfers who love taking on a difficult shot.  I’m getting flashbacks of Tiger Woods hitting a 6 iron 216 yards, over water, on the 18th hole, to a tucked pin at the 2000 Canadian Open.  Phil Mickelson is another guy who can make a movie with highlights of shots he’s pulled off with no regard for the difficulty, or hazards looming.

 

However, lets think outside the box for a second…

 

Golf is hard,  and fear sucks. I think those are two things everyone can agree on.  That is a deadly combo though, especially for the golf industry, because there are SO many people who don’t play golf simply due to the fear of playing poorly their first time.  Well, lets not sugarcoat things, a beginner golfer, is always going to be a bad golfer.  However, that isn’t a bad thing! People shouldn’t see the steep learning curve as daunting; they should simply find others who are at the same point in their golfing careers, so that every round is a comfortable experience.

 

That’s our mission. Allow golfers of all skill levels, ages, and walks of life, to find their ideal golfing experience every round - with the golfers they want to play with – at courses in their price range - during times that are convenient for everyone.

 

Creating an ideal golfing experience, betters golf, grows the game, and attracts new people to the sport who are not considered part of the golf community today. I’m no genius, but to me, and our team, that ripple effect makes a whole lot of sense.

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