Gannon Golf Clinic teaches the game to Lynn’s youth

Brad Ray of Lynn shows his daughter Dahlia Ray the correct stance during the Gannon Golf Clinic on Monday. (Photo by Paula Muller)

LYNN — The Gannon Golf Club hosts an annual youth clinic over the course of four Mondays each July. This year’s edition wrapped Monday morning, with a group of 75 golf hopefuls taking in the action and learning the basics on the course. 

“It’s really just a way to promote golf to the kids of the city,” head golf professional David Sibley said. “Golf’s a sport we’re trying to keep around and keep in the city. It’s a great way to keep it going and it’s a great way to get kids involved.” 

The annual clinic is free of charge and open to youth from ages 6-15. Sibley, in his sixth year as Gannon’s Head Professional, said the clinic has drawn a good group each year. 

“There’s so many of the kids that have been coming for years,” Sibley said. “As we get going it’s good to see. We break the kids into little groups. You recognize them year after year. There’s a lot of them that have been there four, five, six years. It’s great to see.” 

Basics and fundamentals are what the clinic hones in on. 

“We try to cover all aspects in the four weeks,” Sibley said. “We work on chipping, putting and full swinging, all aspects. 

“It’s essential (to learn the basics),” Sibley said. “If they can start early and they can grasp the basics early, they always have something to build off. Kids sports are popular and you have to start somewhere. It’s certainly great to start developing good habits right out of the gate.” 

Sibley said this year’s running drew 100 participants in its best weeks. Numbers were down a bit with Monday’s steamy weather but that didn’t take away from a successful month. Those who took part improved their game and picked up confidence along the way. And of course, having fun was also a priority. 

“It’s great. You’ll start with the kids week one. You’ll see them on the course and by week three or week four, these kids have the ability to get around,” Sibley said. “It’s more fun for them. It’s great to have fun. If you teach them and they enjoy it, it’s going to be something they’ll want to do, having fun with their friends. 

“With both the junior program and the junior PGA program we host, there’s a lot of fun over the summer,” Sibley said. “It’s been a great summer for us like that.” 

In addition to the youth programs, Sibley feels it’s been a great summer season at Gannon. The weather has cooperated with Gannon’s schedule, for the most part, and that’s where it starts. 

“The weather’s everything to us,” Sibley said. “We’ve been fortunate enough to have some fairly mild weather at times. We kind of go how the weather goes. When it’s nice out we’re fairly busy. We certainly had a lot of rain at the start of the season which was tough. You can’t fight mother nature, as they say.” 

Next up on Gannon’s docket is the Ladies Member-Guest Tournament on August 10. The Silver Classic’s scheduled for the following weekend (August 17). The Gold Classic’s scheduled for September 21-22. Gannon will host the men’s and women’s Fall Fourball tournaments on October 12.

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