Last month I participated in the Zo’s Summer Groove Golf Tournament hosted by, NBA Future Hall of Fame Inductee, Alonzo Mourning (yes, I’m biased). Zo’s Summer Groove, an annual fundraising event, supports Alonzo Mourning Charities (AMC). AMC is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) public fundraising foundation. AMC’s mission is to create platforms for youth to excel. AMC supports programming with proven results that deliver resources to students and families in need.
In the past the tournament had been at the Doral Golf Resort and Spa. This year, the host course was Turnberry Isle in Aventura, FL. According to their website, “World Golf Hall of Famer Raymond Floyd completely redesigned both championship courses from tee to green and the results are nothing short of spectacular. The Soffer and Miller courses offer 36 holes of character and a fair test for all skill levels. Recently Fairmont Turnberry Isle Miami golf resort was proud host of the NBC/ADT Golf Skills Challenge and The Stanford International Pro Am, an official LPGA tour event.”
Of course I had to get a new wardrobe for the tournament. I totally worked the pink since I knew I would be one of a handful of women playing. Pink skort, visor, scarf for my golf bag and grey/pink shoes. Because Nike doesn’t have a pink golf balls, I rocked Lady Precepts.
The tournament, being held on both courses, was a sell-out. As I walked the range area I noticed that the field included Jason Taylor (former Miami Dolphin), NFL Hall of Famer Richard Dent,CNN’s Roland Martin, actors Anthony Anderson (Law and Order), Jeffrey Donovan (Burn Notice) and fitness guru/golf Diva Donna Richardson Joyner. Luckily, I was put in a foursome with my friend Jason and his friend Shawn. Unfortunately our 4th, Trey, couldn’t make it.
Since no one in my group had time to warm up (log jam at the bag drop) we had to work it out on the course. What I loved about playing with Jason and Shawn is that while they are competitive, they also like to have fun. We visited every vendor tent, tasted every Grey Goose popsicle, took Grey Goose shots,hydrated with coconut water, did push-ups with members of the US Army Miami Recruitment Battalion (I did 10)and sampled the food at all the restaurants.
The format for the tournament was best ball and we finished at 1 under. We did not win or come close,but I am proud to say that more times than not we used my ball. But my biggest accomplishment this year was my increased confidence level. Last year I was so intimated about playing the Blue Monster at Doral that I needed a pep talk from Alonzo to get out car. No pep talk needed this year! I couldn’t get on the course fast enough. What a difference a year makes! I Love this game!
Originally posted July 2010
This week I will make my debut in my first Tournament! I’m excited and nervous. I just hope the others in my foursome are kind and understanding! I am looking forward to playing a challenging course, making friends, and learning more about the game.
Admittedly, I thought by now I’d be 10 pounds lighter, 5 pounds in muscle stronger and my game a little better. The reason I’m not, is that life got in the way. But it’s all good because I was living life.
I took some time to go to Costa Rica with a friend. We basked in God’s beauty, ate great food, went zip lining, horseback riding and white water rafting. We took the time to sit on the balcony and watch a volcano erupt, monkeys and iguanas go about their day, all within reach (sometimes, too much in reach). I got a lot of reading done on the beach and just relaxed. I followed that trip with a business trip to New Orleans. More good food, company and I watched kids of all ages experience magic! So I can’t be upset that I didn’t reach my goal. Because I gained something better, peace and joy.
I did get in 2 rounds of golf last week. First, with the league at Disney’s Palm and then a round at Orange County National. I had good rounds and was able to tweak my game.
I also managed to get some golf shopping in. I scored two skorts and 1 pair of shorts at Tail Activewear, all for $42! I also found some pants at the Izod store that I will wear at the tournament.
Un Cutt, a celebrity sneaker designer, painted my shoes and they rock (picture to come) so at the very minimum I will look the part. To top off the outfit, I have a Miami Heat ball marker, it’s my way of honoring the hosts of the tournament, Alonzo Mourning and Dwyane Wade.
It’s always a little scary to do something new, but that’s what life is all about. Getting out there and taking risks and the bonus that in the end you end up having fun!
You don’t have a Fairy Golf Father and you’re thinking that golf is too expensive to play. Is golf expensive? The answer is Yes and No! Like anything in life, you can either pay full retail or you could shop around and find the same things at a discount.
When I first investigated about playing golf, the major barrier for me was the cost of the clubs. I had only looked for clubs at Golf Pro Shops because I didn’t know where else to look. At that time it was like looking for clothes on Rodeo Drive. Not really in my price range.
One night I was at dinner with my Fairy Golf Father and his wife. He asked what was preventing me from getting serious about playing golf. I responded “I can’t afford the clubs.” He looked at me and waved his wand (ok his fork) and said,” I got you”. I looked at his wife who commanded “say yes and thank you, right now.” And poof my wish for clubs was granted. But what to do now?
What to do now? I have access to clubs but no idea how to buy them. I called on PGA Teaching Professional, A.G. Stepney. Coach Stepney suggested I go to a local golf pro shop and get fitted for clubs. Uh what? So with Coach Stepney by my side, I got fitted for clubs. During the club fitting they measure your arm length and then have you hit a series of balls at a wall with a net. They capture your strength and speed. Turns out I needed men’s clubs, senior shaft. So with that knowledge I then was able to order my Nike clubs from his contact(Fairy God Father’s only requirement). The club fitting at is free and the knowledge you get is golden. With this knowledge you can buy a less than expensive box set from Wal-mart, Target, or used from garage sales or sports equipment re-sale outlets.
While you’re at the pro shop getting fitted, sign up for their loyalty programs. Often they send you coupons or host events that have special sales. I belong to the Golf Galaxy loyalty program and recently took my friend Beth to a Ladies Only event there. Just for being one of the first 50 entrants to the store we received a $10 gift card. Then Beth won the first raffle of another $25 gift card. She bought a Greg Norman skort and a pair of Footjoys (pictured here) both at 50% off. After using her gift card, she only paid about $30.
Looking for golf apparel and you can’t wait for a special event and don’t want to pay full retail? Well, I never want to pay full retail, so here are some tips. Marshall’s and TJ Maxx carry Nike Golf, DKNY Golf and Tommy Hilfiger Golf apparel at 75% off the cost at the pro shops. Golflocker.com and Budgetgolf.com are great sites for discounted golf shoes. Golfnow.com saves you on greens fees and is easy to use. Also, when you find a course you like, join their loyalty programs and/or email database or Facebook page. Courses often have special rates for loyal customers. So golf does not have to be expensive, so if that’s your excuse for not playing, get swinging!