Sunday, May 31, 2009

Junior Golf of Cochise County, Arizona

Junior Golf of Cochise County was born from a love of the game of golf and the kids from this beautiful county. Cochise County, Arizona covers 6,219 square miles and has a population of about 128,000. There are eight golf courses in the county, seven public and one private, mostly concentrated around the counties largest city, Sierra Vista. Cochise County is a very rural county, with the entire southern portion sharing a border with Mexico. As you can imagine, there are many unique issues when you live this close to the border, which can create a great deal of temptation for kids; hence, why Junior Golf is so important. If we can get more kids involved in golf or any constructive activity for that matter, it could mean one less kid going astray and getting into trouble. Plus, these kids are the future of golf and if we don’t pass along this great game to them, where will we be in a few years?

In March 2006, I started working at Turquoise Valley Golf Course, Restaurant & RV. My first experience working with the kids in the area was helping some with the Bisbee High School Golf Team that spring. In May, I set up a junior golf program for the month of June. We had 35 kids in the program. By the time the next spring rolled around, I was helping full time with the High School Team and trying to figure out how to get more junior golfers into the summer program. We decided to expand and include kids from the Boys & Girls Club of Bisbee. In 2007, we had 38 in the regular program and 15 in the B & G Club program. We received donations of clubs, bags, shoes, balls and pull carts from all over, and thanks to these donations, by 2008, were able to expand the program to two months, and had a total of 55 junior golfers.

In January 2009, the Turquoise Valley Golf & Social Association decided to close their books after 37 years. They asked me if they could donate some money to junior golf. I said that would be great, and guessed that the donation would be enough to cover the upcoming summer’s Junior Clinic Tournament and meals. Much to my surprise, it was a lot more! However, there was one stipulation, I had to make sure the program grew and became something more than just a Turquoise Valley program. Eagerly accepting this challenge, I met with several local business people and we decided to start a true county wide junior golf program, which is how Junior Golf of Cochise County was formed and we are working to establish ourselves as a 501c3 Non Profit Organization.

The goals for our first year are to set up clinics at each course within the county, to distribute the 1,000+ golf clubs that have been donated and we have set the dates for the first Cochise County Junior Golf Championship, July 27 & 28, at Turquoise Valley.

Please visit the website we established, to get information out to all the kids, parents, schools and golf courses.

If you have any questions about our program, wish to volunteer your time, or contribute, please contact

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

May Trivia Contest Winners

The answer to the May trivia contest was - In 1926, the first outdoor mini-golf courses were built on rooftops in NYC. We had 34 people answer correctly. The winner of the Callaway Tour ix golf balls is James T. of Eden Prarie, MN. The winner of the Swing Reminders wide brimmed hat has not e-mailed me back yet. If I don't hear from him/her by Friday, I will pick another winner.
Thanks to all that played this month's trivia. Look for next month's trivia around June 3rd. Have a great golf day.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Weekly Swing Reminder - Putt With Your Shoulders

You have probably heard this for years. But, do you really
understand what it means? Basically, it means to not use
your hands or wrists when putting. If you think of it as
just using your shoulders like the pendulum on a grandfather
clock. If you break your wrist going back or through,
you will not hit solid putts. You will hit the ball on
the downswing or upswing and in either case, your putts
will normally come up short. It’s almost the same effect
you will have if you look up. Good Putting….

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Weekly Swing Reminder - Confidence

Be confident in all you do. Know that you can make the shot,
whatever the shot is. Positive self talk is an awesome thing.
I caddied some LPGA events in the early 80s and it always
amazed me that the ladies would talk themselves into hitting
a good golf shot. From the time they pulled the club out of the
bag, they talked to themselves and not once did I ever hear
one say anything negative. They told themselves “this is the
perfect club, the perfect yardage, and I have the ability to hit
a great shot”. Now how could you ever hit a bad shot with confidence like that?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Golf Trips & Tips Podcast

You can now download the latest Golf Trips & Tips Podcast at the Apple i store. Check it out...we are currently ranked #5 in golf podcasts.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

May Trivia Contest

This month we will give away a couple of great prizes.

All you have to do is subscribe for the Swing Reminders Blog to be
sent to your e-mail and answer the trivia question correctly.

You have a chance to win a dozen Callaway Tour ix golf balls or a really nice Swing Reminders Golf wide brimmed hat.

The contest runs from May 9th - May 24th, and the winners will
be drawn on May 25th.

The trivia question is: In 1926, the first outdoor mini-golf courses were built on _________ in
New York City. Fill in the blank, where they were built.

E-mail your answer to and subscribe to the blog @ It's that simple. Good luck and keep it on the short grass.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Cancer Sucks

Yes, that's right.....Cancer Sucks.

It's been about 14 months since one of the greatest guys ever Mark "Shu" Schuler, was taken away from us by this *%#*@!! +&^$%#@ disease. It really makes me mad and very sad, because Shu is one of the best friends ever. I say "is" because I know he is up there watching us and laughing at the stupid stuff we all still do. Plus, we had his Michigan chair with us at Hooters and I can still see him sitting there. He will always be a part of our lives and our memories.

Last year about two months after Shu left us, we planned a small golf outing in Naco, AZ for some of his golf buddies. We had 8 players and I got this really big trophy (from Shu's garage) for the winners. We made it a two person team, blind draw, no golfing skills required...cause Lord knows Shu had very little golfing skill. It's mainly about getting everybody together, playing some golf, drinking some beer and remembering Shu.

This year we moved the Mark Schuler Annual Memorial Golf Outing to The Blanchard Course at Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ. Which meant we would have alot more of Shu's friends coming out. Plus, we added another aspect. I got some donated rounds of golf, thanks to Turquoise Valley and Golf and we did a raffle. All the money we raised went to Cancer Research. We made $240 and donated it to Shu's Mosaic of Hope.

Thanks to everyone that came out for golf, met at Hooters or couldn't make it and just thought about Shu, and how much we miss him.

This will be an annual event, held each year around May 5th (Shu's birthday), so mark your calendar's now. I'd like to make it a huge fund raiser for Cancer Research. But then again, I'd like it to be more personal and just have all of Shu's buddies hanging out playing a little golf and holding our beers up high, saying "Drink One For Mark". We miss you buddy.......but we know you're watching.