Junior Golf – Patty Curtiss

4The 37th Girls’ Junior Americas Cup (GJAC), an international team competition among the top four junior girls from the Western United States, Canada and Mexico was held at Walla Walla Country Club, July 29-32 of last year. The Washington Junior Golf Association (WJGA) served as host last year. This July, the tournament will be contested July 28-30 at Cheyenne CC, Wyoming.

I have a deep sense of gratitude for the GJAC and the WJGA as both organizations were founded by my mother, PNGA Hall of Fame inductee and the “mother of junior golf,” Joan Teats. She laid the groundwork for Junior Golf in the state of Washington and dedicated herself for over 30 years to its growth. Joan loved the game and kids, and surrounded herself with many great people to carry on her legacy. Today I serve as both team captain for Washington and the current president of GJAC, and  I feel so honored to see the dedication of one woman unfold every July.

Being chosen to play in GJAC and to represent your state and country is one of the highest honors in girls’ Junior Golf. Each team selects their team members differently, but all players must exemplify outstanding skill, sportsmanship, discipline, courtesy, and strength of character. Once they depart for the tournament and return, they are mentored by their team captain on “how to be a team mate” and are also expected to follow a code of conduct (no cell phones on golf course property) during the entire experience. This is the first big step in preparing them for collegiate golf. Last year, we had approximately 20-30 coaches in Walla Walla recruiting.

During the event, last year, the first perpetual Joan Teats Inspirational Team award was given by WSU golf coach Kelli Kamimura to team Hawaii. Although many teams exhibited the qualities and attributes on which the tournament was founded, this team, and the “Aloha Spirit” they lived by, stood out from the others! Team Mexico was the winning team at 5 under par.

The highlight of the week for me was the bet I won with the superintendent. Although the turf was lush, the rough was long, there were a lot of trees, small greens and difficult pins locations. We shook hands before the tournament. I said the winning team would be MORE than 3 under par, and he took 3 or less, and he was setting up the course! These girls were impressive people and players!

All results and photo gallery can be viewed on our website atwww.gjac.org, and you can like and follow us on Facebook as well!

Thank you to all my LPGA sisters who are involved in developing young girls through the game of golf. Apparently it’s working!

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Best Practices – Jennifer Bermingham

8The LPGA-USGA Girls Golf of Long Beach chapter has been very successful. The program meets once a month with girls of all ability levels and ages. It is a great outlet for competitive juniors to have fun at the course without any tournament pressure and is a great introduction for a new junior. Each meeting has what I call a “creative activity” which isn’t always golf related. Last month, we had a Hollywood themed meeting where the “creative activity” was for the girls to strut down a 25-foot red carpet that was rolled out on the driving range. Complete with paparazzi (getting their picture taken) and red carpet interviews (asking them what designers their golf clothes were) the girls loved it!

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Member Profile – Becky Henderson

7How long have you been a golf professional?

I have been a PGA class A professional since 2011 and have been working in the industry since 2007. While attending the University of Idaho and going through their Professional Golf Management program (PGM). I completed 16 months of internships at various courses. These courses included Wenatchee Country Club (Wenatchee, WA), Birdwood Golf Course (Charlottesville, VA), Desert Canyon Golf Course (Orondo, WA), and Eugene Country Club (Eugene, OR). After completing my business degree and graduating, I was offered the 3rd assistant golf professional position at Eugene Country Club.

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In the News – Alison Curdt

Alison Curdt, LPGA & Master PGA Professional Competed in This Year’s Inaugural KPMG Women’s PGA Championship

Perspective is everything. But unfortunately it often takes losing something or someone before learning life’s most valuable lessons.

Alison Curdt was one of those who learned the hard way, losing everything in 2006.

“That was the day everything was taken away,” Curdt said. “Everything was taken away in a materialistic way.”

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Letter from the Western Section Secretary – Mary Ritchie

MaryRitchieHope you are all enjoying a wonderful summer full of fantastic learning opportunities as well as some rest and relaxation. I am grateful to those of you who submitted articles for our newsletter this quarter. I know we all love learning about one another, and I invite all of you to share freely and often. I’d love to send more frequent news blasts with rich content. Feel free to tell us what is happening in your world! Please email me with your thoughts and ideas!

Letter from the Western Section Vice President – Debby King

debby kingAs always, anyone looking to host a seminar or webinar please feel free to contact me for the Northwest and Alison Curdt for the Southwest! We are always looking for Education and Meet-n-Greet opportunities!

I am very excited to host a seminar at my golf course! August 3, 2015 from 8:30am – 11:30am. The cost is $40 for LPGA members & $50 for non-members. Make checks payable to: LPGA Western Section and mail them to: 2735 Emerald Street, Eugene, OR 97403

I hope ya’ll can make it!