‘Real golf’ demands commitment
Kudos to Ken Byers and his spot-on “get off my lawn” comments regarding spoiled and demanding millennials (“From the Morning Read inbox,” Jan. 19, http://bit.ly/2mVb1EW).
Real golf is outdoor recreation, a time to enjoy nature's offerings, an opportunity to challenge yourself in all conditions and occasionally beat the course. It is not and should never be an entertainment medium. It requires hard work and patience to gain the skills to really appreciate its virtues.
Don’t blame golf’s woes on millennials
To attack millennials as “the problem” in discussing the growth/contraction of the golf industry is akin to blaming future customers that you don't have in the door yet. It’s a poor, bitter attitude that does no service to the future of the industry.
One reader slams Topgolf as a “bowling alley.” Thanks for the analogy, but perhaps we ought to look at the comparative business models of Topgolf and any nearby 18-hole golf course. Compare top-line revenues, land-acquisition costs, sources of revenue, time of actual customer interaction with staff (which leads to potential upsell, cross-branding and long-term customer retention) and any other business metric, and I like Topgolf’s potential upside.
Wanna buy a golf course? There are plenty available. I know lots of people in the golf industry who think Topgolf is really on to something.
Kudos to Morning Read for the dialogue on this, and for giving publicity to people in the industry who are willing to try new, innovative and experimental concepts in introducing the game to new players.
Sponsors’ troubles aren’t Tour’s fault
The PGA Tour cannot be omniscient when it comes to sponsors' futures (“Rogue sponsors fleece PGA Tour’s image,” Jan. 19, http://bit.ly/2rqipgw). The Tour, like all investors, also can get fleeced. At the time, all information to judge a sponsor might look good until something triggers an investigation uncovering the misdeeds.
Unless you are a golf historian, many of the game’s observers will not recall last year’s tournament winners, let alone the event sponsors. They might do well recalling winners of major championships or the FedEx Cup winner, but all the other tournaments? Forget it.
Concerning the Clintons and their foundation, I am no fan of theirs, but they have not been found guilty of any crimes (yet) and are not in the same league as Allen Stanford, et al.
No one is omniscient. I’m not sure that I would want to live in that world.
Seeing through the smoke screen
Excellent article. Cash talks, and usually the PGA Tour listens.
There always will be an endless list of suitors to the PGA Tour, with shady histories and predictable futures. I can’t wait for the Marijuana Growers of America Open.
Bloomfield Hills, Mich.
Morning Read invites reader comment. Write to editor Steve Harmon at email@example.com. Please provide your name and city of residence. If your comment is selected for publication, Morning Read will contact you to verify the authenticity of the email and confirm your identity. We will not publish your email address. We reserve the right to edit for clarity and brevity.