Monday, Dec 9, 2013
Crab Orchard Junior Golf
CARTERVILLE -- From Rickie Fowler to Rory McIlroy, the younger generation is taking over the PGA tour. And just like golf's biggest stage, kids in southern Illinois are hitting the links as well.
"One day my dad brought me over here to the golf course and we started hitting some balls and I just got addicted to it," eight-year old Will Houston said.
Every summer, more than 100 kids invade Crab Orchard Golf Club in Carterville. They attend a weekly clinic that introduces them to the game of golf, something Director of Junior Programs Sarah Haas says is important.
"I tell parents, 'I don't care what your kid is going to do in life, golf is going to help them.'"
Haas teaches the kids how to swing, chip and putt. They also learn about etiquette.
"I was kind of nervous cause I didn't know how to do it but then I learned by watching all the other kids," nine-year old Makenna Hanley said.
Crab Orchard's youth program has been around for more than 35 years. Haas says turnouts are high, in large part because of all the younger players on the PGA tour.
"I think a lot of parents really want to have their kids involved in golf right now because of all the good things it teaches kids," Haas said. "The honesty, the integrity, the perseverance, the tenacity. All of those things are good core values that people want in their children."
"We entertain them, we teach them that they have to follow the rules," Crab Orchard Director of Golf Steve Heckel said. "We give them a little bit of skills, they grip it this way, they swing this way and then we encourage them to have fun."
Wind: 3 MPH
Humidity: 63 %
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