Caledonia Golf & Fish Club and True Blue are two of the best-loved courses in South Carolina, not just because of the quality of their layouts and facilities, but for their commitment to giving back to the game of golf in order to strengthen its future. This passion was recognized in the Sun News in golf writer Alan Blondin’s weekly column this morning, which details both a new policy at the courses and the return of a great event.
The policy is a new junior level of membership to the two Mike Strantz-designed courses that works together with instruction offered at the Steve Dresser Golf Academy. Juniors can sign up for the Dresser Academy junior program and then be eligible to join both True Blue and Caledonia for $150 for the entire year. Memberships include practice privileges and reduced greens fees of $13.50 for nine holes and $20 for 18 holes. Parents accompanying juniors will be eligible to play for guest-of-member rates as well.
As for the event: this July 30, Caledonia will once again host the First Tee of the Grand Strand’s annual Future Generations Tournament. The event is meant to raise funds for the chapter, as well as the neighboring First Tee of Brunswick County in North Carolina. Entry into the event, which is expected to sell out, costs $2,000 per foursome.
The event and the organization received a huge boost in publicity last year and promises to experience the same this year, thanks to two Golf Channel personalities with strong ties to the area: Kelly Tilghman and Charlie Rymer.
Rymer and Tilghman both serve as hosts for “Morning Drive,” the daily talk and news show on Golf Channel. Tilghman grew up in North Myrtle Beach and Rymer, a native of Rock Hill, South Carolina, has spent a great deal of time in the area as well, both as a young golfer and as a past spokesperson for Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday.
Tilghman is particularly interested in helping to raise the profile of the First Tee and is eager to start with her hometown chapters, saying, “I feel if I’m going to take a next step with The First Tee it needs to start with my hometown program. I think we’re onto something here. Last year was the inaugural and it was very successful for a first try. It was small but we gave it a bigger presence with Morning Drive hits…I hope to create something special to showcase the Myrtle Beach program and pull people in from around the country. That’s the goal. We’re just getting started.”
In addition to helping pave the way for continued success for area First Tee chapters, this year’s event will also serve to commemorate the life of Caledonia Golf & Fish Club original head golf professional Todd Welden, who passed away at age 50 in 2013.
Interested players can contact The First Tee at 910-754-5288 or its executive director Rebecca Albin at 304-952-4473.