Plenty of junior golf opportunities available
Despite the pandemic, Cape Region junior golfers have several opportunities to compete or learn to play the game, as well as prepare for the chance to play at the college level.
The annual American Classic Golf Club Kids Golf Camp is set for Monday to Friday, Aug. 10 to 14, running from 5 to 7 p.m. each night. It’s open to kids from ages 6-16, and ACGC teaching pro Austin Ebersole will oversee instruction in golf etiquette, proper form and technique, as well as golf games.
Registration is limited to 20 children and the entry fee is $150 per child. Bringing their own clubs is highly recommended but not required.
The sign-up deadline is Friday, Aug. 7. For more information, go to americanclassicgolf.com and follow the link.
Several Cape Region clubs are bringing back the PGA Junior League beginning next week. The golf version of Little League, these team competitions use a scramble format to give every player a chance to contribute.
At this point, participating clubs include Rehoboth Beach Country Club, Baywood Greens, Maple Dale in Dover and Hoopers Landing in Seaford. However, there are no current plans to add playoffs to the local matches between clubs.
According to head golf professional Pat Mastrian, Rehoboth Beach CC is working with the First Tee of Delaware to hold a clinic at the club later this year. Finalizing this event may depend upon progress with COVID-19 issues.
Speaking of First Tee, Wilmington Mayor Michael Purzycki is seeking participants and sponsors for the 2020 Annual Mayor’s Cup Golf Tournament benefiting the First Tee of Delaware. The organization began serving juniors in Delaware in 1995. Thus far, at least 23,000 young golfers have participated, including several Cape Region juniors at American Classic GC.
The Mayor’s Cup takes place Thursday, Sept. 17, with a shotgun start at 11 a.m. at Rock Manor Golf Course in Wilmington. For more information, go to firsteedelaware.org.
The July 3 Cape Gazette ran an article about the new agreement between the Delaware State Golf Association and Youth on Course, a national nonprofit that gives junior golfers access to subsidized golf as well as internships, college scholarships, and a caddie program.
Juniors may join YOC for $18 per year; however, First Tee of Delaware registrants automatically receive YOC membership.
DSGA Executive Director Laura Heien said the official YOC course participants are currently all upstate: Delcastle Golf Course, Ed Oliver Golf Club, Rock Manor GC and Newark Country Club. She remains optimistic that downstate courses will jump in as well.
I spoke with YOC Chief Executive Officer Adam Heieck at the PGA Merchandise Show last January. We discussed the fact that DSGA was working toward joining dozens of other golf associations in this major effort to promote junior golf. The Delaware courses added with the new agreement brought YOC to nearly 1,400 participating locations throughout the country.
The young golfers are taking advantage of their YOC memberships. Last month they broke the record for the most YOC rounds in one day June 15 and June 24, the second time with 2,501 rounds.
While the juniors pay only $5 to play a round, the subsidy that makes up the difference for the participating courses comes in several forms. Heieck said 42 percent of YOC members play with at least one paid accompanying adult, but 90 percent of the subsidy costs come from regularly scheduled fundraisers.
For example, several state associations held a 100 Hole Hike last year, raising $700,000 for YOC.
Heien said DSGA will join in the 100 Hole Hike in September; plans are still being finalized for that event. Look for an announcement soon about a Cape Region club hosting this fundraiser.
Cape Region juniors thinking about playing golf at the college level should check out Junior Golf Hub and its online community (juniorgolfhub.com). For example, juniors can create a JGH profile to combine golfing skill records with their academic achievements. The profile can help narrow down the possible options to give college-bound players a better chance for admission.
The hub also guides juniors and their parents through the college golf recruiting process, and on the other side gives college golf coaches a chance to widen their search for potential team members.
For more information, download the free app from the App Store or Google Play Store, or go to juniorgolfhub.com.
Black and Gold Tournament
The Rehoboth Beach Country Club 18-Hole Ladies’ Golf Association held its 18th annual Black & Gold Charity Event June 24. The event raised more than $2,700, and players also brought in 90 pounds of food, all of which was presented to Chad Robinson from the Food Bank of Delaware.
This year the Black Team won the event 13.50 to 7.50. Black Team members included: Pat Beebe, Tina Brinsfield, Elise Coar, Barbara Collins, Ann Cunningham, Lora Drewer, Beth Forbes, Daisey Hudson, Patty Lessy, Dale Lipnick, Carole Ann Medd, Cyndy Simeone, Arlene Simms and Carol Wetherhold.
Lipnick and Gold member Sheila Halfpenny won closest to the pin on the 19th hole, while Cunningham and Gold member Kim Stockson won a putting closest to the pin contest.