Putting Greens News & Blog
Backyard Putting Greens are Family Fun Centers
Wednesday, January 18th, 2006
The Chicago Sun Times reports that more and more families are turning to home putting greens as a form of recreation. And having a golf fanatic in the house is not a prerequisite.
Terry and Charlie Mack of Middletown, Ohio, say their synthetic green is a draw for friends and neighbors, and even to their 2-year- old granddaughter. “Everybody putts,” said Robert Zielinski of Ft. Thomas, Kentucky. “You don’t have to be a golfer.” He added, “I met a family at one of the outdoor shows debating whether to get a hot tub or an outdoor putting green. He finally said he’d rather see friends on his putting green than in his hot tub.”
Golf legend Hale Erwin says his artificial putting green is “a great amenity for our family recreation.�? “It’s definitely a draw for family parties. We’re always out there doing a little putting. It’s a good cocktail-hour activity and the kids are starting to get more interested in it,” said Pete Van Curen of Fort Thomas, Kentucky. “It’s (also) a nice place for me to get away” just outside the front door, Van Curen said. “The kids hang out back there, and when they leave, the parents take over,” said Bob McCafferty, also of Fort Thomas, who lights his green at night.
McCafferty mentally constructed his putting green as a teenager living in the same house, then owned by his parents. “I was about 14 when I looked out at the back corner and saw that flat spot out there and thought it was a perfect area for a putting green. Even then, I would trim the grass really short and make a hole myself putting a flag in a flowerpot.�?
Does having a putting green guarantee wins on the links? It can’t hurt.
Paul Shok, an orthodontist from Meadville, Pennsylvania, swears by his synthetic putting green, which he uses three or four times a week. He told Cigar Aficiando magazine, “I belong to a country club in my hometown, but I also belong to Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio. There’s a tremendous discrepancy between the speed of the greens, so if I know I’m going to Firestone, I can make my green faster, and if I’m going to play here, I can make it slower. If I get on my green and give it half an hour or 45 minutes, it makes a significant difference when I’m out on the course.”
There aren’t any long irons being wielded around Brad Ramer’s backyard putting green outside of Atlanta, but you’d better bring your best chipping game and a fist full of dollars if you want to step on this stage. Every Wednesday night, Ramer hosts a weekly tournament. Six cups and three teeing areas combine to form an 18-hole short track for the four-man teams.
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