Valley golfing news

Roundup of what’s up on the links

It doesn’t take long in the Columbia Valley before you meet a golfer, drive by a golf course, or grab the clubs and head to the links yourself. Golf is as much a part of the Valley for many people here as is the lake or the mountains. So here is a roundup of some of the interesting golf news in the Valley these days, including several upcoming golf events, a new caddie program, and a new app.

EK Seniors Tournament

For the first time ever, the East Kootenay Seniors tournament will be held at Copper Point Golf Club. Running Monday, June 10th and Tuesday, June 11th, the 52nd annual tournament is for senior men aged 55 and up. There is also a ‘junior’ division for men aged 50-54. It is a 36-hole stroke play flighted competition. Both days will be a shotgun start at 10 a.m. There will be gross, net, and hole-in-one prizes, as well as a buffet dinner and reception following round two.

Scott McClain, PGA of Canada head golf professional at Copper Point, said up to 112 players can participate in the tournament, and there is still room to enter. To keep things fair for senior players, the players will tee off from a middle set of tee boxes (the green tee markers).

Registration deadline is Saturday, June 1st. Call the pro shop at 250-341-3392 extensions #1 or #3 to register, or email Head Pro Scott McClain at smcclain@copperpointgolf.com.

Copper Point will be running their patio pitch-off during the seniors tournament. Players get $5 for two attempts to get closest to the pin in mens, womens or junior division. Patio Pitch Off happens every Friday evening on the Par 1 from 7-9 p.m. beside The View Restaurant deck at Copper Point Golf Club. Half the money collected will go to a local initiative. Last year, Patio Pitch Off raised $1,400, which was donated to a 2019 high school grad from David Thompson Secondary School.

Zone 1 Women’s Championship

The BC Golf Zone 1 Women’s Championship is Saturday, June 1st at the Ridge at Copper Point and Sunday, June 2nd at the Radium Resort course. For more information, see www.bcgazone1.org/zone-championship.

Caddie Master

Eagle Ranch Resort has hired a caddie master, Quinn Vilneff. Mr. Vilneff says the position means he is the manager of the caddies, and his intent is to bring the level of caddie services up to a world-class level.

Caddies are “an amenity that’s pretty old school,” said Mr. Vilneff, who has caddied for the past decade all around the world.

He says with only a limited number of caddie programs in the entire country, this is something Eagle Ranch would like to build up and become known for.

“Caddies enhance the experience while you’re at Eagle Ranch. We want to provide you with a service quality that is unmatched,” said Mr. Vilneff.

The goal of a caddie, he explained, is to help you enjoy your time on the course more and play a better game. Caddies will let you know the tricky spots, help you with the lay of the land, and assist you in making the best shots you can – “they’re here to help.”

Eventually the plan is to establish a youth caddy program, said Mr. Vilneff, that includes scholarship opportunities, called the Evan Scholarship. The scholarship offers financial support to caddies who have a strong caddie record, excellent academics, outstanding character, and demonstrated financial need.

Coys App

Coys Par 3 now has a free app to make playing at the Fairmont course a more enjoyable and informative experience. It was developed by Philip Boyer, who explained the app allows you to digitally track your score, as well as keep your scoresheets from previous games which makes it easier to track your progress over a season. It tracks distances to each of the holes, has weather information, and also allows you to book a teetime. Mr. Boyer developed the app after he was playing at Coys one day and started thinking how it would be great to know, at the quick click of a button, the distance he had to shoot on each hole. It is now available for download from the Google play store, and will be available soon at the Apple store.

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