Archive for May, 2010

Making golf fun (even if you have no idea what’s going on)
May 7, 2010

I can vividly remember going to a golf course for the first time as a kid (without Dad), and almost wanting to bolt two minutes after entering the Pro Shop at Laytonsville GC. Even at an inexpensive municipal track, the air of superiority and exclusivity engulfed the room. The local pro stared me down, telling me with his eyes I better not mess up his course or slow down any of his regulars. I nearly cowered when he demanded the four dollars for nine holes and was told to see the starter. There was no sense of welcoming, that I might become a life long customer. Instead, I was to be dismissed unless I did something improper, that would involve banishment (or according to my imagination, much worse).

Despite that experience I quickly developed a love for the game. But I’ll never forget that feeling of intimidation. That’s why I was so happy to hear of a new program now offered from Baltimore’s Classic 5.

Taking the directive from the PGA’s Play Golf America program a step further, the Baltimore Golf Academy is born.

Jon Ladd (seen here) serves as director and smiling face of the program, a wholly different approach from my first experience.

What they hope to gain, and there are financial motives behind this, are new customers. They want golfers. Happy, fun loving golfers. To accomplish that, they offer this program for adults to learn not just some fundamentals of the golf swing, but the logistics of getting around the course. What is the starter, rules for the putting green, how to play quickly regardless of skill level, real no-no’s in regards to etiquette and most importantly, how to have fun while doing it all.

Classes start at ten dollars and range up to $99. They have evenings set up where you come and play nine holes, for free, and do it with one of the pro’s walking alongside. That’s the real value. It’s one thing to hit balls on the range (and Pine Ridge offers a great facility for that), but to figure out how to get around a course the proper way and have fun doing it requires a lot of knowledge. They will provide.

Golf is used worldwide as as a vehicle for business. It’s a sport you can play for the rest of your life. But if you never learned as a child, fighting through the intimidation and possible embarrassment is too much for most. Here’s your chance to learn the game, as an adult, taking the fear away.

They also offer inexpensive deals on decent equipment.

This may sound like an infomercial, but I’ve been through instructional clinics and lessons before but never heard of anything like this. It’s a really good idea for a game that needs some good pub right about now.