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Siomara Valdez
Siomara Valdez
Sports & Photography Editor

Siomara “Alfred” Valdez is a senior at Palatine High School. Valdez is very passionate about photography as it is a hobby of theirs. Valdez went out of their comfort zone to take on new opportunities...

Youth golf participation makes drastic increase this summer

Luke Jorden
Luke Jorden, Johnny Pellettiere, and Nate Royer (from left to right) visiting Shoop Park Golf Course in Racine, Wisconsin.

Youth golf has seen an upswing in participation over this summer, at all time highs across the nation.

Twin Lakes Golf Course, a nine hole course located eight minutes away from Palatine High School, includes Junior golf academies and camps. They’ve seen the numbers increase a significant amount as of recently.

“I think that numbers have been up since COVID since there’s younger kids who are more eager to learn golf at a younger age nowadays since it has blown up in popularity throughout the years,” Twin Lakes Golf Course employee Martin Marinov said. “Especially younger kids around ages four through seven, because their parents have invested in golf for them.”

When you get to high school, it also seems to be a common extracurricular activity for free time, especially in the summer. Whether you’re talented at hitting the ball or not, it always calls for a good time. 

“This summer was probably the most I’ve ever golfed with friends,” Illinois Junior Golf Association golfer and Palatine student Johnny Pellettiere stated. Johnny also caddies at Royal Melbourne Country Club for a job and to get to know golfers around the area better.

Social media and video creation is another huge aspect to why the youth is so inspired by the sport. An ambassador of golf on YouTube, who actually graduated from Palatine in 2015, Tom Broders, also known as “Bubbie Golf” is a YouTuber with 217,000 subscribers on the app, and also is a part of the Good Good Golf channel, which has 1.35 million subscribers. 

“I think he’s made a tremendous impact on the rate of youth golf participation,” Close companion of Broders, Kevin Cygnar said. “Being a coach with the District hockey team, I’ve noticed a lot of kids who have just come up to me showing how much they love him and how much they love his videos, and then seeing them get onto the course themselves.”

Tiktok is also a hotspot for Golf creators, where beginners and veterans can learn lots about the sport through shorts on the page. There are 5 popular brands and creators with more than 500,000 followers on Tiktok.

Students that would like to join the golf craze, can start anywhere around here. Driving ranges are recommended to get back into the swing and feel of a golf club. Ranges in Palatine are located at Palatine Hills Golf Course and Twin Lakes Golf Course. There are also 8 public courses within a 20 minute drive of Palatine High School. 

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About the Contributor
Luke Jorden
Luke Jorden, Reporter
Luke Jorden is a senior at Palatine High School. He is a play by play sports broadcaster in the broadcasting club here at PHS. Jorden also has jobs with two other sports franchises and a high school hockey network. He is very passionate about anything sports, whether watching or playing, as he enters his final year on the District hockey team and the lacrosse team here. Being a journalist is something Jorden enjoys because he can tell stories on paper in a way he can’t on video. He aspires to be a play by play announcer for a major team or network one day.

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    Magda PellettiereOct 2, 2023 at 2:16 pm

    Great article, Luke Jorden!