Category Archives: Local Golf

USGA and First Tee Award 2023 IDEA Grants to Local Youth Programs

LIBERTY CORNER, N.J., and PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – The USGA is awarding its latest round of IDEA (inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility) grants to 27 First Tee chapters across America, building upon a longstanding commitment to create a more accessible game and impact communities through golf.

From supporting chapters in major urban markets, mountainous regions and predominantly Hispanic communities to targeting low-income families across the country, the USGA and First Tee aim to level the playing field by providing club-in-hand experiences to every junior who wants to play golf and benefit from the character-building lessons the sport provides.

In 2023, chapters selected will receive up to $15,000 to provide transportation, hire diverse coaches, train volunteers and build programs in diverse communities, among other activities. USGA grant funding, which totals $200,000, will enhance grassroots efforts that help break down barriers of entry.

“It’s important that we don’t let up on our efforts to drive greater diversity and inclusion at the junior level,” said USGA CEO Mike Whan. “By meeting youths within their schools and communities, and collaborating closely with our industry partners, we are opening up more pathways at a critical entry point into the game.”

IDEA grants will support many chapter initiatives, including:

  • First Tee – Central Carolina, located near Winston-Salem, N.C., will extend its programming from eight months to year-round by hosting Golf and Grades, an after-school tutoring and golf initiative, at indoor and outdoor facilities. The chapter also supports six paid summer internship positions for HBCU golfers that offer valuable instructional opportunities, access to practice facilities and hands-on experience at the PGA Tour’s Wyndham Championship.
  • The first chapter in its region, First Tee – Greater Tallahassee (Fla.) engages students in Title 1 schools and predominantly low-income communities by supplying equipment and training physical education teachers to lead in-class activities, while also offering after-school programs and summer camps. The chapter hosts a golf camp and two DE&I Community Field Days in collaboration with Florida A&M University, an HBCU, with transportation and meals provided for participants.
  • Through a series of instructional sessions, First Tee – Central Coast offers children from People’s Self Help Housing in Guadalupe, Calif., their first exposure to the game. Over 20 participants from low-income households are invited to two-hour, off-course classes prior to taking lessons on-course at Santa Maria Country Club and Blacklake Golf Course, where they have access to the practice facilities and are able to play a hole of golf.
  • In partnership with the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, First Tee – Phoenix engages local Latinx youth through a series of outreach initiatives in addition to hiring a translator and hosting listening sessions and focus groups. The chapter also provides clinics tailored toward Latinx families and events around Día Del Niño.
  • More than 70 percent of youths in the First Tee – Metropolitan New York’s service area come from traditionally underserved communities. The chapter plans to use its funding to help provide full scholarships for youths from the NYC Housing Authority, Mosholu Montefiore and other community centers.
  • First Tee – Virginia Blue Ridge is working to make golf more welcoming and inclusive by providing opportunities for kids to try the game without an intimidation factor. Following the successful launch of putting league competitions at a local putt-putt fun center, the chapter plans to use grant funds to improve the league and establish additional community partnerships that help to reach underserved populations.
  • First Tee – Monterey County (Calif.) has identified a growing number of children considered homeless in its area and hopes to inspire and engage these youths with new programs. The chapter plans to allow 25 participants to travel to King City Golf Course, which it assumed management of in 2022, where they will participate in four, two-hour clinics with a PGA instructor. Following the program, the students will take a field trip to Pebble Beach Golf Academy and participate in a clinic hosted by academy director Laird Small.

The USGA IDEA Grant program was established in 2021, building off the strength of more than 20 years of partnership between First Tee and the USGA. Since its inception, 72 grants have been distributed to 46 chapters across 30 states, helping connect more diverse young people to the game and to First Tee’s character-empowering programs.

The full list of 2023 USGA IDEA Grant recipients is as follows:

First Tee — Central Arkansas First Tee — Louisville (Ky.)
First Tee — Central Carolina (N.C.) First Tee — Massachusetts
First Tee — Central Coast (Calif.) First Tee — Metropolitan New York
First Tee — Central Mississippi First Tee — Monterey County (Calif.)
First Tee — Denver (Colo.) First Tee — Orange County (Calif.)
First Tee — Greater Charleston (S.C.) First Tee — Phoenix (Ariz.)
First Tee — Greater Pasadena (Calif.) First Tee — Sandhills (N.C.)
First Tee — Greater Philadelphia (Pa.) First Tee — South Central Wisconsin
First Tee — Greater Richmond (Va.) First Tee — South Dakota
First Tee — Greater Wichita (Kan.) First Tee — Southern Colorado
First Tee — Indiana First Tee — Tallahassee (Fla.)
First Tee — Inland Empire (Calif.) First Tee — Virginia Blue Ridge
First Tee — Lake Erie (Ohio) First Tee — West Michigan
First Tee — Los Angeles (Calif.)

IDEA Grant applications were open to all First Tee chapters in the United States, with preference given to those affiliated with one of the USGA’s 58 Allied Golf Associations (AGAs). Located in all 50 states and Puerto Rico, AGAs provide USGA resources and services at the community level – helping to increase engagement and participation and improving the golfer experience.

In 2022, 3.4 million juniors played on a golf course – the highest level since 2006 – with studies indicating that this golfer segment continues to be more diverse than the overall golf population. Programs like First Tee and initiatives such as IDEA grants play an important role in that growth, underscoring the need to direct funding toward grassroots efforts.

A recent study conducted by First Tee and Harris Poll highlights the importance of exposing youths from underrepresented backgrounds to golf and similar extracurricular activities in their character development. Eighty percent of parents surveyed stated that participation in extracurricular activities is more about development than recreational activity, with 76 percent also identifying golf as helpful in building character and teaching life skills.

“First Tee is proud to not only introduce kids to the great game of golf, but also to provide fun and safe spaces for young people to build self-confidence, overcome challenges and grow as leaders,” said First Tee CEO Greg McLaughlin. “The USGA has been an important partner of First Tee since our inception, and we are grateful for their ongoing support to help us reach kids from underrepresented and underserved communities.”

Additional research from the Harris Poll indicates that black and lower-income families participate in extracurricular activities at lower rates, creating a greater need for initiatives like IDEA grants that help break down barriers to entry. First Tee aims to make programming accessible to families through scholarships and other special programs.

About the USGA

The USGA is a nonprofit organization that celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment, handicapping and amateur status rules. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit

About PGA TOUR First Tee Foundation (“First Tee”)

First Tee ( is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit youth development organization that is supported by the PGA TOUR. Its mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character and instill life-enhancing values through the game of golf. Since 1997, First Tee has expanded to reach millions of kids annually through its network of 150 chapters, 11,000 schools and 1,900 youth centers. Headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA, programs are delivered in all 50 United States and select international locations. President George W. Bush serves as Honorary Chair.

Spring Golf and the WHS – What Every Golfer Should Know

By: Terry Benjamin of USGA

As more than 30 states move from the “inactive” season to “active” between March 1 and April 15, golfers across these regions are likely to encounter wet weather, shorter days or course maintenance conditions unique to the season.

Here’s everything you need to know about spring golf and the World Handicap System™ to navigate your round:

1.  Struggling to finish your round due to the sun setting earlier? As long as you play 7 holes, you can still post a 9-hole score. If you get through 14 holes, an 18-hole score can be posted. The score for any unplayed holes is par plus any handicap strokes you receive based on your Course Handicap™.

2.  Playing in tough conditions? You may see the playing conditions calculation (PCC) come into play more often than you would during the summer. The PCC compares the actual scores made each day to the expected scores of the players who made them – and if the scores are significantly higher (or lower) than expected, an adjustment to each player’s Score Differential™ is automatically applied. Just remember, at least 8 scores must be posted at a particular course on the day of play for the PCC to be calculated – so encourage your friends to post their scores as soon as possible!

3.  Are preferred lies in effect due to wet and soggy conditions? Don’t worry, you can still post your score. The Handicap Committee at the club should make this determination each day, so check with the golf shop before teeing it up.

4.  Were the greens recently aerated? If so, unless the Handicap Committee decides to temporarily suspend score posting due to poor putting surfaces, putt it out. The use of an “automatic two-putt” is not acceptable for handicap purposes.

5.  Planning to start your season with a friendly match among friends? Match-play scores are acceptable for score posting. On the holes you don’t hole out, simply record your most likely score for the hole – keeping in mind your most likely score cannot exceed your net double bogey limit.

For more information or to learn more about the World Handicap System, visit

Men’s Golf Catches Fire Late for Third-Place Finish at Golden Horseshoe Intercollegiate

Byline: Old Dominion Sports

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – Propelled by a late outpouring of birdies, the Old Dominion men’s golf team shot a final-round 289 to jump six spots into third place at the Golden Horseshoe Intercollegiate. Reigning individual medalist Jakob Henriksson tied for fourth place, and Rasmus Konradsson was tied for sixth.

It was really tough yesterday with the wind and the cold,” head coach Murray Rudisill said. “The guys played today like I thought they should have the entire tournament, but something clicked today.”

ODU’s scoring four of Henriksson, Konradsson, Gustav Fransson and Jakob Chicoyne all finished out on a tear, going a combined 13-under par down the closing stretch. Henriksson birdied two of his last six holes for a final-round score of 2-over 73 and a 54-hole total of 220 (+7). Konradsson eagled the par-5 second hole and added a birdie on the sixth, his final hole of the day, for a 74 on Tuesday and finished the two-day event at 9-over 222.

Fransson played his last four holes at 5-under and carded a 1-under 70. Like Konradsson, he eagled the second hole and then closed out with three straight birdies. Tuesday’s 70 was a six-shot improvement from the second round and helped Fransson finish tied for 25th at 229 (+13).

Chicoyne used an eagle on the second hole to ignite a late run as well, playing his last seven holes at 5-under to finish the day with a 1-over 72. He tied for 35th at 232.

Filip Wetterqvist rounded out the Monarchs with a 79 on Tuesday and a two-day total of 243, good for a share of 62nd.

ODU’s 289 in the final round was the third-best round by a team at the event and the second-lowest score on Tuesday. The Monarchs were the third-best team on the par-71, 6,817-yard Golden Horseshoe Gold Course’s par-4 holes and were tied for fourth in par-5 scoring as well (-4). ODU also logged the most birdies by any team in the field with 45 and had three eagles.

Towson won the team championship with a three-round score of 882 (+30). Georgetown finished second seven shots behind the Tigers and 10 strokes ahead of the Monarchs.

Villanova’s Peter Weaver earned individual medalist honors at 1-over 214. He edged out Georgetown’s William O’Neill by a single shot. Will Halamandaris of George Mason rounded out the top-three at 6-over.

Robb Kinder and Alex Price Play Sudden Death Playoff as Captains Golf Wins Glenn Heath Memorial by Forty Strokes

Byline: Christopher Newport Sports

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — The Christopher Newport men’s golf team added to it’s first round lead and dominated the 2022 Glenn Heath Memorial by forty strokes on Tuesday after wrapping up the 36-hole event with a 26-over 602 (293-309). CNU scored four of the top five finishing scores with Robb Kinder and Alex Price tying for the individual medalist honors. On the second playoff hole, Kinder notched a championship-winning par putt from 15-feet to edge out his teammate for the top spot on the individual leaderboard.

After matching each other shot for shot through the first 36 holes, Christopher Newport veterans Robb Kinder and Alex Price were still deadlocked at the conclusion of the second round. Headed to a sudden death playoff, both players delivered long drives off the first tee. Kinder found himself just off the fairway to the left about 145 yards from the pin; Price was in the middle of the short grass a yard or two back and took the second shot first.

The lefty stared down the green with a heavy contingent of onlookers as the two Captains vied for the individual medalist honors and delivered a picture-perfect iron pin-high. Moments later, Kinder matched his roommate and teammate with a beautiful second shot up the hill and the gallery streaked up the fairway to find both balls on the green in regulation. Kinder stepped up to his putt first and opened the door for Price with a tap-in for the two-putt par. With his birdie putt, Price slid the attempt just right of the hole and the playoff would continue on.

No way that one playoff hole would be enough for the two in match play, the Captains’ duo headed to the second for what would prove to be a decisive hole in the match and tournament. The second hole — a 210-yard Par 3 — saw both players with challenging second shots. Kinder’s tee shot found a greenside bunker and Price was long and forced to chip on as well. A beautiful out from Kinder set up a par putt and applied the pressure on Price to get close and potentially force another head-to-head hole. Price got on, but the fast green betrayed the Captains’ all-time scoring leader and the ball trickled 20 feet past the hole. He lined up a solid par putt, but would be forced to settle for bogey.

With medalist honors on the line, Kinder needed to sink a 15-footer to close out the win. Wasting little time, the CNU junior lined up and slammed in a match-winning par off the back of the cup.

Playing at the Williamsburg Club, Christopher Newport had the support of the CNU Women’s Golf team as well as other fans throughout the day and into the playoff. The conditions were tough with gusting winds and temperatures in the low 40’s, but CNU persisted for a second-day 309 on the Par 72 Black tees.

Price and Kinder fired matching 147’s (72-75) to lead the way for Christopher Newport. Aidan Baron and Jackson Gessaman also finished in the top five at ten-over par for the tournament. Baron finished 154 (76-78) and Gessaman also signed for a 154 (73-81).

In addition to the counting scores for CNU on day two, Carrter Morris rounded out the CNU starting lineup and tied for 16th with a 163 (82-81). Three Captains finished the evenet as individuals with Michael Thomas tying for 11th at +16 with a 160 (80-80) and Drew Parr tying for 16th at +19 with a 163 (83-80). Bobby Stribling finished in 30th with a 169 (90-79) after shaving 11 strokes off his opening day score. The 79 is a career-low round for Stribling.

Christopher Newport will close out the spring season at the Camp Lejeune Intercollegiate from April 8-10.

The Path to The Country Club Begins Today

LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (Feb. 23, 2022) – The United States Golf Association (USGA) today announced that online entry applications are available now for the 122nd U.S. Open Championship, to be contested from June 16-19 at The Country Club (Championship Course), in Brookline, Mass.

Thousands of golfers will once again attempt to qualify for the championship through a two-stage process in which eventually 156 players will advance to The Country Club and one will be crowned U.S. Open champion. Non-exempt players will compete in one of 109 local qualifiers hosted throughout the United States (with one in Canada) between April 25 and May 23. Nearly 1,000 players will then compete in final qualifying, scheduled at 11 sites worldwide on May 23 and June 6.

Final qualifying will not take place in England for the second consecutive year due to continued international travel requirements, but as was done in 2021, an exemption category will allow players to earn entry based on a four-event U.S. Open 2022 European Qualifying Series. The top 10 aggregate point earners from those DP World Tour events (Betfred British Masters, Soudal Open, Dutch Open and Porsche European Open, which take place between May 5-June 5), who are otherwise not exempt, will earn spots in the U.S. Open field.

Exemptions will also be awarded to the 2020-21 top finisher on the Asian Tour Order of Merit, the 2021-22 top finisher on the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit and the 2021-22 top finisher on the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit, who are not otherwise exempt as of May 23.

Entry applications along with a list of qualifying sites can be accessed at, and entries will be accepted through Wednesday, April 13, at 5 p.m. EDT. To be eligible for 2022 U.S. Open qualifying, a player must have a Handicap Index® not exceeding 1.4, or be a professional.

Allied Golf Associations (AGAs) in the United States, the Japan Golf Association and Golf Canada are working together to provide thousands of entrants from across the globe and from all backgrounds with the opportunity to compete for a spot in this major championship. This collaboration with AGAs allows for an open qualifying process in all four USGA Open championships. Since 2010, the U.S. Open has averaged 79 players in the final field who have advanced through one or both stages of qualifying.

Entry applications for the other three USGA Open championships are also available. The 77th U.S. Women’s Open Championship will be played June 2-5 at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club, in Southern Pines, N.C. The 42nd U.S. Senior Open Championship will be contested June 23-26 at Saucon Valley Country Club (Old Course), in Bethlehem, Pa., and the 4th U.S. Senior Women’s Open Championship will be held Aug. 25-28, at NCR Country Club (South Course), in Kettering, Ohio.

The Country Club will host the U.S. Open for the fourth time. The champion was determined in a playoff in all three previous Opens at the club, with amateur Francis Ouimet (1913), Julius Boros (1963) and Curtis Strange (1988) winning the title.

Annual Invitational Golf Tournament Fundraiser

Registration is now open for our Annual Invitational Golf Tournament, August 28. 2021. Registration closes 8/27/21 9:00 pm.

Choose from individual ticket to Title Sponsor.

1) Make Payment

2) Email registration form (see below)

3) Questions contact Ms. Cathy Wysong @

Individual ticket– $100 (Includes cart, breakfast, lunch and range balls)

Foursome– $380 (Includes cart, breakfast, lunch, and range balls)

Challenge Sponsor– $100 (Corporations/Associations/Individuals unable to participate, but would like to be listed in event program as Challenge Sponsor)

Hole Sponsor– $500 (Signage at a hole, one foursome included, cart, range balls, breakfast and lunch, recognition at awards’ luncheon)

Snack, Beverage or Player Cart Sponsor – $650 (Signage on respective cart, opportunity to add promo materials to player bags, opportunity to donate prize to event raffle, one Foursome included)

Breakfast Sponsor – $1000 (Corporate banner displayed at breakfast, CRWS sponsor plaque, Opportunity to add promo materials to player bags, opportunity to donate a prize to the event raffle, one Foursome included)

Lunch Sponsor– $1500 (Corporate banner displayed at lunch, CRWS sponsor plaque, Opportunity to add promo materials to player bags, opportunity to donate a prize to the event raffle, one Foursome included)

Title Sponsor– $2000 ( Name/Logo on all promotional material mailed to businesses and friends, Name and logo on advertisements, Corporate banner displayed at entrance, CRWS sponsor plaque, Opportunity to add promo materials to player bags, opportunity to donate a prize to the event raffle, two Foursomes included)

21st Annual Lawerence E. Anderson, Jr. Education Assistance Golf Tournament by Tidewater Chapter – Tuskegee Airmen Inc.

The Tidewater Chapter of TAI, inc. is a non-profit organization formed to promote historical, scientific, and social research; fund educational programs; and to grant scholarships to local high school seniors wishing to enter college. We also mentor students and support our flying and drone training programs.

For additional information please visit our web site

 21st Annual Lawerence E. Anderson, Jr. Education Assistance Golf Tournament image



The first round of the Pure Silk Championship presented by Visit Williamsburg at Kingsmill Resort had a hole-in-one from Jane Park, the first in her 15-year LPGA Tour career. The #LPGAMom found the bottom of the cup on the par-3 5th from 148 yards with an 8-iron.

“I actually hit the perfect shot. People by the green said it rolled in just like a putt,” said Park, who shot a 3-over par 74 on the River Course in the first round. “I hit exactly where I wanted to, and once I saw it hit the green, I kind of turned away and started walking back towards my bag. Then I heard an eruption of applause up by the green. There were a few volunteers, and my cousin is here watching. One of my playing partners said, ‘You holed out.’ I got chills. Started jumping up and down. High fived everyone.”

For the ace, CME Group will donate $20,000 to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. The 2021 season now has five aces for a total of $100,000 in donations to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.


“Did you say $20,000?” Park said in questioning amazement. “Wow, well it is an absolute honor to help the cause and obviously, having a baby girl myself, I sympathize with all those parents suffering with sick children. I’m just so happy that I can be part of that. It’s really awesome.”


WILLIAMSBURG, Va. | The rock band Bon Jovi used to belt the lyrics “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” in the early 90s. Of course, Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora also slept past noon during their touring days. And almost never did the band play on four hours of sleep a night for the better part of a week.

Wei-Ling Hsu, the 26-year-old Taiwanese player in her sixth season on the LPGA Tour, doesn’t know much about big-haired stadium rock. But she can certainly relate to some of the words Jon wrote. “Sometimes I sleep / Sometimes it’s not for days.”

“I’ve only slept I will say 20 hours in the last five days,” Hsu said after going out in the morning at Kingsmill Resort and firing a bogey-free, 5-under par 66. “Since I didn’t get much sleep, I didn’t really expect much this week. Just try to sleep and relax and play golf.” Then she laughed, shook her head and said, “I mean, I’m so tired.”

Hsu is not an insomniac. Far from it. She loves a good nap as much as the next person. But like many travelers, sleeping on airplanes is a problem for her. So, the 8,500-mile trip from Chonburi and the Honda LPGA Thailand to Williamsburg and the Pure Silk Championship was always going to be tough. However, Hsu had even more stress in the middle. Last Thursday, she played a 36-hole qualifier in Arizona for the U.S. Women’s Open.

“I actually flew into L.A., picked up my mom and then drove all the way from L.A. to Phoenix,” she said. “I got in on Wednesday, no, no, no, on Tuesday, and then had a practice round on Wednesday.”


We’ve all been there. Days run together. Eyes feel as dry as rice paper. Every step is an effort. “I didn’t really play a practice round,” Hsu said of her prep for the qualifier. “I was just too tired. I couldn’t even swing. So, I just got a cart and drove around. Didn’t even chip and putt. I just looked at the course. I’d never been there, but I was so tired I didn’t want to leave that golf cart. I was just like, ‘I can’t do it.’ And I needed to play 36 holes the next day, so I told myself that it was okay just to drive around.”


Turns out it was 37 holes. Hsu was in a playoff for the final alternate spot. She made a birdie putt on the first extra hole to earn the alternate spot and will be waiting anxiously in San Francisco in a couple of weeks to see if she is in the field at Olympic Club.


But the travel odyssey wasn’t over. “I had a redeye flight that night, which was like 11:05 pm or something from Phoenix to Charlotte,” she said. “So, by the time I got home I was like, ‘Oh, my God,’ because I’d only slept two hours.”


A couple of days on the east coast where she tried to catch up and she was back in the car to Kingsmill.


“I think I just need to recognize that you need breaks and you have to tell yourself, ‘Hey, you are tired,’ and not be like, ‘Oh, I’ve still got a tournament going on, I need to practice, hit like a thousand balls on the range.’ I feel like if I can sleep well, I can hit more quality shots and have a clear mind, recognizing that (sleep) is helping my body relax and recover.”


Low expectations might have played a role in Hsu’s great opening around. “I just didn’t really set any goals,” she said. “I had a good experience in Thailand and Singapore because when we go overseas, it’s really hot and high humidity, so after 18 holes you are always hot and sweating. You can’t really do anything on the driving range or putting green (because of the heat), so I tried to take a break and relax more after my rounds. It felt pretty good. I think I’ve learned from that experience and I’m carrying it forward to this week.


So, what is her game plan for the rest of the week in Virginia?


“Sleep,” she said with a smile and shoulders that sagged in relief, proving once again that the old adage holds true: Be wary of the weary. For they are capable of surprising things.