For the second year our Crown Isle course has held a tournament for what is called Qualifying School to get into the PGA where the big money comes.  When you watch big name tournaments all of the players had to go through Q Schools to get in (aside from opens where you can work your way through regional tournaments)

In any event this is the only Canadian Q School and because it is held in May must be held here on the Island.  Can you imagine trying to hold a serious professional golf tournament anywhere else.

The weather was beyond perfection this week with the course in immaculate condition.  130 young aspirating golfers trying to make it into the big time.  The winner gets a ticket to the US PGA and the next 4 get to play in the Canadian PGA this summer.  They pay big money for the chance.

90% of the golfers are American from the southern states and most of these are graduates from college programs trying to get into the next stage of their professional careers.  Even the Canadian players I talked to, mostly lived and practiced in Florida or California.    A few had caddies and some had their coaches with them.  Granted many of the caddies where their dads.

I volunteered to help on the tournament.  There are lots of duties to run a PGA tournament and the members of our club sign up in droves.  I received a prime position as a Starter for the last two days.   Hand out the score cards, tell the players of special changes and … here is the good part.. announce the players as they tee off.  NOW AT THE TEE… FROM CHATTANOOGA TENNESSEE…  JOHN WHATEVER.  I even got to announce FROM OTTAWA ONTARIO… RYAN ELLIS.    Ryan did not look like our Ryan but looked a lot like a young Evan.  I made sure as I met each player to determine how to pronounce their name and the town they came from.

These kids could hit the ball like smack.  Slim guys hitting the ball 300 yards.

I think of the times I spent big money to watch PGA games and while these kids are just knocking on the door of this level, their games were way beyond what I normally see and I got to see it for free (and even received a free lunch each day).

And here is a nice part.  These are guys in their 20s and they are polite as anything.  Calling me Sir and thanking me for volunteering and just chatting.  I expect they have to learn to be surly when they get to the big time.  It was a wonderful experience to meet them and all the volunteers that I talked to felt the same.