A Quick Nine: Who was your biggest influence to get started in golf?

A Quick Nine
PGA of America
There's nothing like spending time on the golf course with your father.
T.J. Auclair, Interactive Producer

Series: A Quick Nine

Published: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 | 12:16 p.m.

Whether it was mom, dad, grandpa, an uncle, an actor, a world-class player, or the fact that we're all gluttons for punishment -- there's someone or something that had a big influence on getting you involved in the game of golf.

This week, we asked our Facebook fans: Who was/is the biggest influence on getting you involved in golf?

The answers added up in the hundreds and there were so many great stories you shared with us. Here's a look at some of the best:

1. Caddying. What better way to get to know the game than to spend your days around the game?

Facebook fan quote:

"Caddying at Winged Foot... that's where I first saw the game and fell in love with it. And seeing Davis Love III win the '97 PGA with the famous 'rainbow scene' helped a little also." -- Andrew Spina

2. A strong man looking to make change.

Facebook fan quote:

"Mr. Eason, who in the mid-1960s built his own golf course very close to my home. Imagine committing that much land to something that certainly was not revenue generating. He was not allowed to join the area country clubs or even play because he was a Black man. He invited his friends to come and play and he taught all of us neighborhood kids the game. Mr. Eason, I salute you." -- Reginald L Rankins

3. Your father. If you're like me and the people whose answers you will read below, many of your greatest memories with your dad involve the game.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Started playing when I was 11. My dad taught me when we moved to Florida and he played golf everyday until the day he died. Not to mention, he walked countless courses with me as I played Junior golf." -- Alanna Child Johnson

"Probably my dad, but I also worked at a course close to my house and I grew up watching Watson, Seve and Faldo -- those three are probably my biggest influences. I became addicted to golf when I watched Watson chip in on 17 at Pebble in the U.S. Open." -- Jason Gately

"My dad took me to a par 3 golf course when I was around 15, and he said, I think you might like this." -- Tim McIntyre

"My dad always played golf with his military buddies and i used to take his clubs and swing them in the backyard. He eventually took me to the driving range and I was hooked. i have been playing for almost 10 years now and i shoot in the high 70's and i get to spend time with my dad. He hasn't beat me in two years but it is still a great time." -- Andrew Bar-down Burke

"Dad. When I was 13 he was putting in storm drain next to a golf course and brought home hundreds of golf balls. If it wasn't for that I would have never started playing golf." -- Lou Magud

4. An uncle. They can teach you some fun games on the course and some life lessons.

Facebook fan quotes:

"When I was about ten my Uncle Bob rented me some clubs and took me to play at a 9-hole course. I will never forget him for getting me started, it was an instant addiction. Sad he is gone now, but THANKS Uncle Bob for 45 years of great fun! Love ya!" -- Michael S. Orzechowski

"Uncle Malcolm. He played for money. He said playing golf without something at risk is like playing poker for match sticks. No way to weed out the bluffers!" -- Paul Grubbs

5. Carl Spackler... Seriously.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Caddyshack and Bill Murray! We had a day off from college baseball practice and went to see Caddyshack. The next day we went to the local executive course and hacked it up pretty bad, but 30 years later it's still as challenging as day one." -- Peter Velasquez

6. Your grandfather. Golf is a great way to spend time together.

Facebook fan quotes:

"My Grandfather when I was 9 and he ran Apple Valley golf course. He gave me my first set of clubs and my second set too. He had a pro give me a lesson and the pro said he would not do anymore so he would not mess up my natural swing. When Grandpa passed away in 99 my cousins and I played 72 holes in his honor. After that I finally bought a set of metal heads like he always said I should and man did I hit the ball!! My Grandpa is watching over me every time I play still. Love you Grandpa and Grandma!!" -- Dana Noe-Sadler

"My grandpa was my biggest influence. He was coming down with Alzheimer's and he taught me while he still could and I was determined to learn and show him before he passed away. He just recently passed and he got to see me succeed in his favorite sport." -- Nick Wisse

"My Grandfather started taking me out every day when I was a little kid. I still have the Gene Littler RAM junior clubs he gave me 40 years ago. I walked away from the game shortly after he died. Late last summer after a 30 year layoff I rediscovered my passion for golf. The course he taught me on was redesigned about 20 years ago and all the holes we played together except for one are gone. Still, I can't practice or play a round on that course or anywhere else without thinking of him." -- Todd Lewis

"My Grandfather introduced me at age 9. Thankful for all the lessons he taught me both on and off the course. He is in my thoughts every time I tee it up and I miss him very much." -- Keith Duffy

7. A boss. Wait, what? A boss? It might be time for a new job search for the rest of us!

Facebook fan quotes:

"My boss, he has helped me in every way possible and he was the person that made me pursue a job in golf." -- Alex Barley

"My old boss, Andy Hoefer, he insisted I take the afternoon off, gave me his old set of clubs and took me to the golf course. I've been addicted ever since." -- Larry W Lindstrom

"Oddly, IBM. Joined IBM when I was 20 (1965), and they had a country club, Sands Point, Long Island (membership $1 for employees). I'll be 66 this year with a single-digit handicap. Thank you BIG BLUE." -- Jim Poppy DeMarco

8. A grade-school teacher. And you thought they only cared about math and English.

Facebook fan quote:

"My fifth-grade teacher, for taking me for my first time. However, I switched to playing tennis religiously and fell away from golf. But I'd have to thank the motorcycle accident I had. Though I golfed a few times a month previous to the wreck, it increased dramatically after. Because the resulting injuries made it painful to run, jump and get physical, golf was the least painful of them all. Once I really learned how hard it was, my perfectionist-drive took over and I'm heading to golf college in a few weeks!" -- Benjamin R Jenson

9. A fund-raising charity event.

Facebook fan quote:

"Sitting at the clubhouse all day at a fundraiser tournament watching all the golfers having fun, and said next year I'm playing. Been hooked ever since." -- David Lockamy 

Try this ...



My dad started me when I was 8 and I enjoyed it. But it was watching Arnold Palmer on TV that set my future career as a PGA member into motion. Ironically, my dad was an Arnold Palmer look alike, so I had the best of two worlds. Now a PGA member for over 32 years, I still admire Mr. Palmer and I still remember what my dad said, " Golf is a game, where strangers become friends when the round is over ". I cannot let the fact go that my mom was my " agent ", as she drove me to every event in my early years. I also must thank my first PGA Professional Ted Pisk, whose junior events back in the early 60's were way ahead of the times


started caddying when I was about 16 at Siwanoy Country Club in Bronxville, NY loved it from then till today still play at 76 so its been 60 years. I enjoy watching all the young talent. Hard to believe how far they can hit the ball.


My father showed me interlock grip at the age of 5 or 6 and then I was "off to the races". I have been a single digit golfer since my teenage years and still am today at the age of 47 (+0.3). Got around the expense of golf having a father being the coach of the h.s. girls golf team. Had to show them that I was paying for something every time I played, so they charged me $1 (those were the days). I played a lot as a youngster with guys that were much older than me, and better, but I have always been able to pound it out there a long ways, so I had no problem keeping up with them.

Played in the US Junior (Saucon Valley CC, 83'), played 4 years of college golf, and am presently positioning myself to becoming a club professional.

Thanks, DAD!!!


No great story here. Just my best friend Rick got me started about 25 years ago and I'm still out there hacking at it best I can. Now I golf with my sister-in-law and still enjoying it.