LACC Hosts SCGA Junior Golf Foundation Mentor Play Day

March 15, 2023

By John DeGomez

*For a full photo gallery, please click here.

*For a video recap, please click here.

The act of play and its interpretation can vary from person to person and golfer to golfer. From the SCGA Junior Golf Foundation perspective, play represents connection, community and most importantly, fun. One of the most rewarding forms of play the Junior Foundation offers are its “Mentor Play Days.”

Play Days are special playing opportunities at private courses across Los Angeles County, during which club members host juniors for a round of golf at their club. Typically, these outings are limited to 16 juniors and occur in the summertime when the days are longer, and school doesn’t interfere with attendance.

Sunday, March 12 marked an exclusive and limited Play Day for the Junior Golf Foundation, as an astounding 36 juniors were selected to participate in the year’s first outing at The Los Angeles Country Club (LACC). With the 2023 U.S. Open on the horizon, LACC and its 36 host members welcomed young golfers to their historic grounds and soon site of the most prestigious championship in American golf.

Did You Know? LACC is an original founding club of the SCGA dating back to 1899. The club has hosted 10 Play Days and donated proceeds from the 2017 Walker Cup to help expand SCGA Junior programming in the San Fernando Valley.

From the moment juniors stepped foot on property, they were treated to a full championship experience. Elite practice facilities, impeccable course conditions, full clubhouse tour and an assigned caddie to help them navigate the challenging Gil Hanse redesign. Golf brought everyone to the course early Sunday morning, but the connection and mentorships are what will be remembered.

California High School senior Sophia Martinez shared, “Today I was given the opportunity to connect with different players from diverse backgrounds and gain new perspectives of where people come from and why they play golf.”

When you break down a round of golf, you are really only swinging, chipping or putting less than 10 percent of the time. The SCGA Junior Golf Foundation feels the other 90 percent is just as important during Mentor Play Days. It’s more than shooting your personal best or trying to break 80. Conversation, bonding and relationship-building are core elements of golf and youth development.

When asked what the experience meant to him, longtime Player & Youth Development program participant Josiah Joseph replied, “All my friends and family are here today. To me, the SCGA Junior Golf Foundation is my family.”

As the day came to a close, participants slowly trickled in from the course, and excited chatter and laughter could be heard throughout the patio. Juniors wanted to share their journey through the vaunted North Course with their friends, swing by swing, shot by shot, putt by putt.

The North Course at LACC provided one of the toughest playing tests for both juniors attendees and mentors. But the experience and memories will always be treasured. LACC Play Day organizer John Fischer tied the bow on a superb day by welcoming SCGA Junior golfers into their community and thanking them for their dedication to the sport and participation.

The game of golf can throw obstacles in your path and attempt to disrupt you from achieving your goals. The people you meet along the way will be the individuals who provide the guidance and support needed for success and perseverance. That’s what the Junior Golf Foundation’s Play Day is all about.

*For a full photo gallery, please click here.

*For a video recap, please click here.

If your username is set as your email address, it will appear as your name when the comment is posted.