Washington, United States: WE ARE GOLF – a coalition of the game’s leading associations and industry partners – visited Capitol Hill for the eighth annual National Golf Day to discuss golf’s nearly US$70 billion economy, US$4 billion annual charitable impact, environmental value to local communities and fitness benefits.
Golf’s leaders met with Members of Congress throughout the day to share stories about the game’s 15,350 diverse, small businesses, which employ more than two million Americans and provide US$55.6 billion in annual wage income.
In addition, industry executives discussed golf courses’ positive influences on ecology, local tax revenues and tourism. They even explained how walking 18 holes can burn 2,000 calories.
This year’s event also featured participation from The Presidents Cup 2015 captains Nick Price (International) and Jay Haas (US). South Korea will play host to The Presidents Cup in October, the first time the tournament will be played in Asia.
“Golf is a vital part of our country’s economy and today was a great reminder of that,” said Congressman Chris Collins. “What better way to discuss the game’s economic, charitable and environmental findings than here in our nation’s capital.”
Organisations participating included the Club Managers Association of America, Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA), Ladies Professional Golf Association, National Golf Course Owners Association, PGA of America (PGA), PGA Tour, United States Golf Association, United States Golf Manufacturers Council, World Golf Foundation and others.
National Golf Day featured a day-long exhibit in the Rayburn Foyer with live lessons for Congressional Members and staff from 2012 PGA Teacher of the Year Michael Breed, host of ‘The Golf Fix’ on Golf Channel and LPGA Teaching Professional Karen Palacios-Jansen.
Special exhibits and activities included a ‘Closest to the Pin’ contest on an aboutGolf simulator; state-of-the-art swing analysis from GolfTEC; National Arboretum’s ‘Grassroots Initiative’ overview; a Republican versus Democrat ‘Putting Challenge’; and a turfgrass exhibit from the GCSAA.
“Today marked a unique opportunity to share golf’s significant impact with political leaders,” said Steve Mona, CEO of World Golf Foundation and administrator of WE ARE GOLF.
“Our broad scope is reflected in the two million jobs supported by the game and its diverse benefits to our economy and society.”
Partnering with WE ARE GOLF, Topgolf offered free five-minute lessons at each of its 13 US locations with slow-motion video swing analysis through the Topgolf U instructional programme.