Junior Golf Program Set At SCCC

Thursday, June 27, 2013
The Sugar Creek Country Club at Piggott hosted a junior golf training program 25 years ago this week, instructed by Marilyn Hazel (left) and C. W. Cummings. The program is being offered at SCCC again this week, and Cummings is once again serving as instructor. (file photo)

Area youth who want to learn the game of golf or improve the skills they already possess at the game still have the opportunity to do so through a program coming to the Sugar Creek Country Club in Piggott beginning June 27. The Tri-State Junior Golf League will focus on educating players ages six to 18. Participating students will receive first-hand instruction in the basics of golf including the golf swing, rules of the game and golfing etiquette. Sugar Creek Country Club will be one of over a dozen sites hosting the eight week course, in addition to other courses in northeast Arkansas, southeast Missouri and west Tennessee.

The program is designed to provide professional golf instruction to a wide range of young players. Students who register will have all of the necessary instruction tools provided. Players will not be required to have their own clubs or golf balls to participate in the program.

Sponsored by Arkansas Northeastern College and led by program director C. W. Cummings, a former tour professional and longtime golf instructor, the league begins with an eight week instruction program during the summer before beginning competition with other participating courses in the fall.

Cummings is no stranger to instructing young players, having formed Arkansas' first public junior golf program in Blytheville in 1982. His efforts since have introduced golf to children in communities throughout the state, many who would have been unlikely to experience the game otherwise. His work has been celebrated by numerous golfing publications, as well as multiple golf professionals, for its benefits to young players and the accessibility he has to players of all skill levels.

"I designed this program to help players get past the intimidation part of the game of golf," Cummings said of the program. "A lot of times the first introduction to the game of golf is out on the course. For many players, the difficulties in starting out lead to frustration and they eventually turn their back on the game. This program will help them overcome that by practicing with game conditions."

By going through each aspect of the game and utilizing training tools such as targets and green boxes, the program softens the difficult learning curve as opposed to stepping on the course the very first day. Young players are able to hone their skills and learn the proper mechanics en route to becoming better, more complete players.

The program is designed to offer something for players of all skill levels. Beginners will receive a general overview of the game and learn the fundamentals of golf. Students with more experience will refine their strengths and receive focused assistance on any weaknesses. Advanced students will improve their knowledge while learning more in regards to executing their swings and improved decision making on the course.

The Sugar Creek Country Club program is scheduled for two hours per session and is set to begin at 9 a.m. Thursday, June 27. Cost for the entire program is $60, or at a rate of $10 per lesson, and is payable to Arkansas Northeastern College. Registration forms are currently available at Sugar Creek Country Club. Registration also is possible by contacting the ANC Department of Community Education at (870) 762-3167 or (870) 762-3168 or by emailing lellington@smail.anc.edu. The program is open to any young player in the surrounding area, not only those currently affiliated with Sugar Creek Country Club.

"The beauty of this program is that it's accessible to anyone," Cummings said. "I wanted it to be affordable so it could be something any family could take advantage of. There aren't any other programs that offer what this does for only $60 or $10 per lesson. I strongly encourage families to consider taking advantage of this if their child has any interest in the game of golf whatsoever. It really is a wonderful opportunity."

The program will feature a safe, family atmosphere. Parents are invited to bring lawn chairs and watch their child participate in the Tri-State Junior Golf League, in both the educational and competition stages.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: