[mks_dropcap style=”circle” size=”45″ bg_color=”#000000″ txt_color=”#ffffff”]I[/mks_dropcap]n early November, I pulled out my golf clubs (that prior to that had been mainly traveling with me and not doing much). I had some great times playing in high school and college, and then life happened and the time for golf disappeared. However, recently my interest in the game has rekindled.
During a vacation and a round of putt-putt the thought hit me: I need something to take me out of the rat race every now and then, to enjoy life, and find out things about myself. It helped too that my family and 7-year-old Josh showed the same enthusiasm.
So on a cold November afternoon in Franklin, N.C., at The Golf Club of Mill Creek, my son Josh and I went to the driving range. Josh loves sports. Any sports, any time. I was fortunate to have a great dad who taught me that love, and I’ve done my best to pass it along. He had a bunch of 7-year-old questions about the driving range like “where would get the balls?”, “how long could we stay?”, and “would we have a truck to pick them up in?” When we arrived we went to the range, where a couple was talking about the basics of a golf swing and hitting a few. I was thinking about how neat it is for families to enjoy golf together and have so much to talk about. Josh was ready with a ball and his driver!
Rumbling Bald Resort
112 Mountain Blvd., Lake Lure, N.C., 28746
Apple Valley — (828) 694-3043
Bald Mountain — (828) 694-3042
Apple Valley — www.rumblingbald.com/golf/apple-valley
Rumbling Bald — www.rumblingbald.com/golf/bald-mountain
Black Mountain Golf Course
17 Ross Dr., Black Mountain, N.C., 28711
Brasstown Valley Resort & Spa
6321 Hwy. 76, Young Harris, Ga., 30582
Broadmoor Golf Links
101 French Broad Lane, Fletcher, N.C., 28732
183 Golf Circle, Rutherfordton, N.C., 28139
Connestee Falls Golf
98 Overlook Clubhouse Dr., Brevard, N.C., 28712
Cummings Cove Golf & Country Club
20 Cummings Cove Pkwy., Hendersonville, N.C., 28739
Dandridge Golf & Country Club
1247 Stonewall Jackson Dr., Dandridge, Tenn., 37725
Etowah Valley Golf & Resort
470 Brickyard Rd., Etowah, N.C., 28729
Grassy Creek Golf & Country Club
2360 Swiss Pine Lake Dr., Spruce Pine, N.C., 28777
Graysburg Hills Country Club
910 Graysburg Hills Rd., Chuckey, Tenn., 37641
The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa
290 Macon Ave., Asheville, N.C., 28804
Maggie Valley Club & Resort
1819 Country Club Dr., Maggie Valley, N.C., 28751
(800) 438-3861 or (828) 926-6013
High Vista Golf Club
88 Country Club Rd, Mills River, N.C. 28759
Laurel Ridge Country Club & Event Center
49 Cupp Lane, Waynesville, N.C., 28786
Linville Falls Golf Club
210 Blue Ridge Dr. N, Marion, N.C., 28752
Patriot Hills Golf Club
999 Victory Trail, Jefferson City, Tenn., 37760
The Golf Club at Mill Creek
341 Country Club Dr., Franklin, N.C., 28734
Mount Mitchell Golf Club
11484 State Hwy. 80 South, Burnsville, N.C. 28714
Reems Creek Golf Course
36 Pink Fox Cove Rd., Weaverville, N.C. 28787
Rock Barn Country Club & Spa
3791 Clubhouse Dr. NE, Conover, N.C., 28613
Sequoyah National Golf Club
79 Cahon’s Mt. Rd., Whittier, N.C. 28789
Smoky Mountain Country Club
1300 Conleys Creek Rd., Whittier, N.C., 28789
Silver Creek Plantation
4241 Plantation Dr., Morganton, N.C., 28655
Springdale Country Club
200 Golfwatch Rd., Canton, N.C., 28716
Wolf Laurel Country Club
2607 Wolf Laurel Rd., Mars Hill, N.C., 28754
I let him go first, and after some brief talk about the swing and stance, he rared back and hit one. He loves baseball, so the idea of hitting a ball that wasn’t going to move was different. “You sure it will not move, dad?” Josh asked. “Nope. You’re good take a swing,” I answered smiling. He did, and the ball went a few feet in the air in front of us — to my applause and his broad smile. “Nice first shot, Josh!” I said.
“Your turn,” Josh said. Since I was never really a great golfer to begin with, I didn’t have to worry about finding my form again. But I did manage to hit the ball not so straight but toward the 150 marker. “Great shot Dad,” Josh beamed. I thought, it is always good to have 7 year olds who haven’t played with you to build your confidence when returning to golf.
The rest of the time was like that we didn’t talk about important chores or school work to be done and I didn’t think of important work I needed to do. We enjoyed being together and hitting balls.
After it was over, Josh proudly rounded up all the range buckets and looked up me and said, “We need to do this again.” We sure did — and have.
Golf is a sport that always can come and go, or stay in your life. I certainly hadn’t completely forgotten about it during time as a sports writer covering events and every year at the Masters I get the same itch everyone else does as the music we all know comes on to announce “the tradition unlike any other” signals the start of golf. But usually the feeling died down, and I moved to something else. Not this time.
This time I’m going to keep going and playing, and thanks to good friend Duane Cross and the super group at 2Bd Media Group, I’m hoping you will take the journey with me. Western North Carolina is a great place to live and play golf. The goal of this website will be to highlight that and the people and places that make it so. And I would love to hear feedback about what should be on this site and even why golf is the sport for you.
Until next time, I hope you have a “we need to do this again” golf moment with someone you care about soon. See you on the course!