Georgia Magazine - April 2017 - 30
THE FIRST TEE OF AUGUSTA
GEORGIA DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES
Kristopher Douglas, now in college, pulls a cart at the Arrowhead
Pointe Golf Course at Richard B. Russell State Park in Elberton.
(Continued from page 29)
a 9-year-old swimmer isn't expected to swim laps in an Olympic-size
pool, shorter golf courses-like par3 courses [courses where an expert
golfer is expected to need three
strokes to complete each hole], executive courses or any course that has a
properly scaled set of junior or family
tees at their facility-are ahead of the
curve," Belongie says.
One example is Godwin Creek
Lashunda Hall, The First Tee of Augusta program director and coach,
helps youngsters develop core values and life skills while learning the
game of golf at the organization's golf course.
Golf Course in Columbus, operated
by the nonprofit Fore Kids Columbus,
"We're a 1,200-yard, nine-hole
course with six par-3s and three
par-4s that is perfect for learning and
practicing your short game," says
Stephanie Callahan, director of operations. "We're the only kid-friendly course in Georgia that operates
almost solely for kids ages 5 to 18.
I say 'almost' because we are a public course, but less than 20 percent of
our income comes from adult play."
Since 2011, Fore Kids has grown
to include weekly junior golf lessons,
monthly junior tournaments and two
summer camps, in addition to over-
seeing the CVMS (Columbus Valley
Middle School) Golf League, which
includes public and private schools
from surrounding counties.
"We also have independent
teams for home-school students and
schools that don't have a dedicated
sponsor for players," Callahan adds.
"In my immediate area," Belongie says, "the RiverPines Par-3 Course,
The Hooch Golf Club [in Duluth] and
Peachtree Golf Center Par-3 Course
[in Duluth] are all great for kids because the holes are reasonable in
Belongie also points out that
certain private courses-such as
(Continued on page 32)
Junior golf at Georgia state parks
"Golf is meant to be a game of fun! It can
be hard sometimes, but that doesn't mean it
can't still be fun," says Paul Belongie, assistant professional at RiverPines Golf Course
in Johns Creek and a U.S. Kids Golf-certified
Junior green fees at state parks vary from $6 to $8 for walking fees. Fees with carts
vary from $15 to $23. The junior rate is valid for green fees only and not valid on holidays and
Golf courses at many Georgia state parks host summer camps and junior clinics
throughout the year. Some courses have dedicated junior tees.
The Georgia Junior Golf Tour conducts several stroke-play events from March through
August on Saturdays and Sundays. Players earn points for each event based on performance.
Georgia Junior Golf Tour entry fees are as follows:
* $115, ages 10 to 18
* $90, ages 7 to 9 (discount for siblings and school teams)
* $20, annual membership fee
The Georgia Junior Golf Foundation's license tags are also available. Proceeds from tag
purchases go to promote the growth of junior golf in Georgia.
To learn more about junior golf at Georgia's state parks or the Georgia Junior Golf Tour,
visit gastateparks.org/Georgia-JuniorGolfTour or contact Karl Gross at (706) 557-3006, (706)
714-2902 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
More online at www.georgiamagazine.org