SCOTLAND IN THE SPRING: The golf travel industry continues to look for ways to get over customers reticence about big trips and big expenses. InterGolf Vacations (formerly InterGolf) is luring golf fans to the Auld Sod, but at a discount price before the traditional high season begins.
For $1,999, you can get a self-drive tour of Scotland, including coach airfare from New York or Newark to Glasgow, as long as the trip happens in April 2002. Golf at the Old Course and Turnberry are guaranteed. The greens fees, car rental, six nights of double occupancy lodging, and breakfast each day are all part of the deal. Check it out at www.InterGolfVacations.com.
But bring some sweaters, or prepare to buy some: The average high temperature in Scotland in April is 52 degrees Fahrenheit (11 degrees Celsius), and the wind can blow. On the plus side: The suns up by 6:30 a.m., and it stays up until about 8 p.m.
WHAT GOLF DOESNT NEED: A new course in Sugar Grove, Ill., called Black Sheep Golf Club, is scheduled to open next spring. But not to everyone.
The club, which carries an $85,000 initiation fee, is planning to accept that massive nut from men only.
Of course, thats the right of a private club, at least under current Illinois law. But the unbelievable thing is that in the press release touting the clubs treeless, condo-less course and swimming-pool-free, golf-focused facilities, the following line appears: [T]he founders believe the absence of women will keep the focus on golf, a sport whose participation numbers still are overwhelmingly male.
Maybe its less unbelievable than it is sad. Hey guys, wake up. Clubs like yours are the reason more women dont play. Chicagoland doesnt need another male-only black eye.
GOLF LEARNING CENTERS TO OPEN: Some say the golf learning center business is on the decline, but dont tell GolfTEC. The Denver-based company has secured new financing, and has 25 new centers on the drawing board. Five are due to open next year in existing GolfTEC markets, including Denver, Chicago, Dallas and Atlanta, where there are already nine outlets. Plans for 2003 are more ambitious; 20 centers are scheduled to open then.
GolfTECs teaching system relies on PGA professionals and state-of-the-art computer swing analysis tools.