The future of golf is threatened by a lack of new players in the game. I discussed this in my book, Golf Chronicles, and made some recommendations as to how to bring new players to the game. One endeavor is The First Tee organization. The First Tee is a national organization managed locally to promote the game to kids who would have no access to a golf course and the game. The First Tee facilitates the golf experience with instruction, equipment and access to a golf course. The game is best learned at an early age in all its aspects-instruction, rules, etiquette and competition. I didn’t take up the game until I was 24 and working professionally. Raised in the inner city of New Haven, Connecticut, I had no access to a golf in any of its forms. Heck, I was lucky to have a baseball glove.
Managing this type of program requires significant patience and persistence. Most parents believe that golf is a rich man’s game and symbolic of a lifestyle that is way beyond their economic means. Golf is much more than a game and the principles of sportsmanship, self-discipline, manners and social etiquette are valuable lessons for life. Golf can enable these qualities and The First Tee views these qualities as critical to their core curriculum.
In the coming weeks and months, we hope to enable The First Tee with some programs that embody the goals of the organization. On 4/22/17, we have been invited by the Silicon Valley Executive Director to visit their public golf course venue in San Jose…more to come.