family fun zone

The free Family fun zone featured group lessons, a giant Golfzilla air target and other family-friendly activities.

Saturday Notebook: Family Fun Zone a big hit

By Randy Stutzman, The PGA of America

SUNRIVER, Ore. -- On Saturday afternoon, residents of Central Oregon were treated to a unique and exciting experience, as Riverbend Park in Bend, Ore., was transformed into a Get Golf Ready Family Fun Zone.

The free family golf festival featured group lessons, a giant Golfzilla air target and other fun activities conducted by a group of local Pacific Northwest PGA Professionals.

Tim Fraley, the PGA head professional at Awbrey Glen Golf Club in Bend, Ore., praised the concept of hosting events like the Get Golf Ready Family Fun Zone, which provide a dynamic way to introduce communities throughout the country to golf.

“It’s always great to get out and connect with the community, and let them know just how fun the game of golf really is,” said Fraley. “Through events like this, we are able to reach out to new golfers, non-golfers, kids and families to grow the game and think outside the box as golf professionals.”

Marcus King, president of the Pacific Northwest PGA Section and PGA general manager at Overlake Golf and Country Club in Medina, Wash., helped coordinate the event at Riverbend Park.

“This is what we live for as golf professionals,” said King. “To see smiles on the faces of kids and adults while they are swinging a golf club or learning more about the game, it makes it all worth it.”

KOESTERS LOOKING FOR REPEAT SUCCESS: Dan Koesters of Las Cruces, N.M., knows “the neighborhood” as he prepared for this year’s PGA Professional National Championship presented by Club Car, Mercedes-Benz and OMEGA, which begins Sunday.

Koesters, the PGA director of golf at New Mexico State Golf Course in Las Cruces, N.M., won the 1996 Oregon Open, which was hosted at Crosswater Club.

The 54-year-old Koesters, who currently serves on The PGA of America Board of Directors, also has his best career finish in the National Championship when it was staged at Sunriver Resort in 2001, when he tied for 35th overall.

RECORDS WERE MADE TO BE BROKEN: The competitive course record at the Crosswater Club, a par-72 layout, was posted by Brad Bryant of Lakeland, Fla., who shot a 62 during the opening round of the 2009 JELD-Wen Tradition, a major championship on the Champions Tour.

The competitive course record at the par-71 Meadows Golf Course was recorded by Bob Sowards of Dublin, Ohio, who shot a 65, during the second round of the 2007 PGA Professional National Championship.

Sowards, a resident of Dublin, Ohio, is a PGA teaching professional at New Albany (Ohio) Country Club.

PAIRINGS, TEE TIMES AND WEB INTERVIEWS: 

Click Here to see a full list of pairings and tee times for the first two rounds of play.

Click Here to watch exclusive web interviews from the Championship.