The east end of Broken Tee at Englewood Golf Course resembled an amusement park on July 2, with games and inflatable attractions erected for the celebration wrapping up this year's Hole-N-One Junior Golf Program.
The Hole-N-One program is designed to teach golf fundamentals in five one-hour group lessons for 5- to 15-year-olds. There is one program for 5- to 7-year-olds and a separate program for 8- to 15-year-olds.
“This was a very good year,” said Bob Spada, golf course manager. “We had more than 400 boys and girls take part in the program this year. We feel the program went well for the kids and also for their parents. We offered inexpensive parent group lessons, with three lessons for $10. A lot of parents took part and complimented us on the program for the children as well as the parents' lessons.”
The July 2 event wrapped up the 13th year for the program. More than 800 people attended the program. Young golfers could hit balls or putt balls at targets for prizes. There were also a multitude of door prizes given away. Volunteers from Red Bird Farms staffed the grills, preparing food for the free lunch, and a short distance away, Meadow Gold was giving away ice cream.
Special guests at the event included about half-dozen Broncos alumni; Rocky, the mascot of the Denver Nuggets; and the cow from Chick-fil-A.
Littleton resident Shelly Behan brought her 5-year-old son Benjamin and her 6-year-old daughter Delilah to the celebration.
“My kids just loved the program,” Shelly said. “My husband is an avid golfer and he takes the children out golfing about every weekend. The children had fun with the lessons and I had fun watching them.”
Benjamin said he liked whacking the ball. His sister said she likes golf too but likes miniature golf better.
A short distance away, Desiree Lenertz watched as her two sons and her 3-year-old daughter Avery hit balls on the driving range.
“We just love this program,” Lenertz said. “This is the third year in the program for my boys, Logan, 9, and Jake, 7. You can see their golf skills improve each year.”
She said she is a golfer and took advantage of the parents' group lessons offered by the program.
“Taking the parents' lessons got me excited about golf again and got me excited about getting back out on the course,” she said. “My husband and I both play golf and we love this program because it is helping our children develop the golf skills so they can eventually join us when we play a round of golf.”
This is the third year 7-year-old Carson Cronin has taken part in the Hole-N-One program.
“I like the program,” the Englewood boy said. “We do a lot of fun things. I learn stuff about golf too. I can hit the ball farther now than I use to do. I like that.”
His mother, Laura, said the family likes the youth golf program a lot.
“The instructors are so friendly and they try to make the lesson fun while they teach the kids about golf,” she said. “My husband and I both like to play golf and we have our kids in the program so we can become a family of golfers.”