Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Golfer in Minnesota

Golf in Northern Minnesota's beautiful Lake Country. Photograph by Peter Wong. Read Peter Wong's Blog.

A major professional golf championship is being played in Minnesota this week.
by Charlie Leck

Minnesota has more golfers per capita than any state in the nation.

More rounds of golf are played in Minnesota, per capita, than any other state in the nation.

On Monday (yesterday), more than 25,000 spectators were on the grounds of Hazeltine National Golf Course to watch the practice rounds. Tiger Woods teed off for his practice round at about 6:30 AM. By the time Woods reached the 10th tee, there were about 10,000 spectators watching him. When he arrived at the signature 16th hole, the grandstands were full. So were they at 17 and 18.

All of this left one pundit to ask: “Doesn’t anyone work in Minnesota?”

I guess I would have answered him: "We work doubly hard all winter, buddy, when there's not much else to do (not true, really), and then we play all summer."

Minnesota is danged proud to be hosting the PGA Championship. Hazeltine, the course where it is being played, is about a 20 minute, back road drive from my house. I’ll watch it on TV this time, however. The knees have gotten pretty bad and the crowds too massive. Nevertheless, I share the pride of so many other Minnesota golfers. We want it to be a great championship event!

My golf club, Woodhill Country Club, where I get to play my golf on a course designed by Donald Ross in 1915 and adjusted by him in 1934. This is the 7th hole, which is pretty much as Ross designed it except for the growth of the trees. The putting surface on this hole is spectacular and very much a Donald Ross concept with a slanting green and a steep drop off on the right. I consider myself an A- student of Donald Ross' design work and I've blogged here a number of times about him.


  1. Hello Charles, Thank you for listing me on your blog/twitter. My golf season is over for the year due to having surgery on my right shoulder on Friday, May 13th. Are you on the board at Woodhill? Would love to photograph it!!!



  2. Nice post and thanks for posting the pic of Woodhill CC!