Jackson Park Golf Association Travels to TPC Deere Run

It was a Memorial Day weekend full of golf for children in Chicago! The Advocate Professional Golf Association (APGA) Youth Clinic was held Saturday, May 27, 2023, and the clinic was a rousing success for the youth, APGA Tour pro golfers, parents/guardians, APGA staff, and Jackson Park Golf Association (JPGA) Board members! Many thanks to the pros present at the clinic for providing golf skills covering driving, chipping, and putting to an eager set of youth ages 5 to 18.
On Monday, May 29, 2023, many of the same families from the clinic attended the bus ride to TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Illinois to watch the APGA Tour pros tee it up and compete in the annual tournament. This was the second time JPGA traveled down to show support and encouragement for the pros.

In 2022, 15 children and 12 adults (with one lady driving herself) were there (https: //jpgachicago. com/jpga-spectators-for-apga-at-tpc-deere-run/); and this year 21 children and 17 adults traveled to support the pros! The pros welcomed spectators warmly and were so excited to sign their autograph on the barrage of notepadson holes 1, 9, and 18! Each traveler received a notepad and pencil from JPGA for pro autographs; and someadults used scorecards with markers showing their eagerness to get pro autographs.

Joseph Dent, son of PGA Tour Pro and Champion Tour Pro, Jim Dent, said he never signed that manyautographs at one time before, which he said was cool; and he was glad to hear more than one applause whenhe birdied hole 18.

Bob-O-Links Junior Golf Club (https: //www. chicagowomensgolfclub. com/bobolinks-junior-golf) member, Rashawn Williams, collected the most pro autographs (37 out of 43) earning him the practice glove of AndrewFernandes, which Andrew signed, Have fun keep grinding! Andrew wanted to give the glove to someone inhopes they would know the hard work, sweat, and practice he puts into playing golf. Andrew attended Cal(California) State Dominguez Hills (Division II) and said, One thing I learned from college, it doesnt matterwhat level you go to, golf is always golf; and be the best at it wherever youre at. It does not matter what levelyoure at D1, 2, 3, dont ever let anyone talk you away from whatever you want to do. Wherever youre at, keep grinding because the opportunity comes to you.

Bob-O-Linkers with President, Lunye Williams (left) and Vice President, Kelli Morrision (right)

J. P. Thornton was the first pro to offer one of his golf balls to Rahsawn, which made Rashwan surprisingly ask, They sign and give golf balls too? ! Of course, Rashawn collected 12 signed golf balls by the end of the day!

J.P. and Rashawn

Kaliyah and Tyler

Before we departed, Mulbe Dillard IV thanked the group for coming out to watch them and added, Its reallyimportant for us to see the next generation coming out and watching us; and pretty much having us teacheverything that we know so you guys can be successful in the future. I come back every year specifically forthis tournament because I grew up in Chicago and I want to see each and everyone of you guys succeed, so Ilook forward to seeing everybody again next year; and again thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Mulbe Dillard IV and JPGA President, Tracy Raoul

JPGA is proud to continue to support Mulbe Dillard IV in the TPC Deere Run tournament; and added two moreIllinoisans to their sponsorship roster for the tournament, Marcus Smith, Jr. of Howard University (Rockford)and Caden Cannon of FAMU (OFallon). Also, congratulations to Caden for the ALBATROSS on par 5 hole 17! Driver and a soft 3-wood 245 yds out! ! ! NICE! ! !

The bus ride home was inspirational, especially when Jehmir Bowers, who had not picked up a golf club forfive years, said, This might be a sport I will take interest to and use to my advantage. Jehmir is 12 years oldnow and not only did he select a new golf bag as a raffle prize at the clinic, but he also received a new set ofclubs from JPGA President, Tracy Raoul, compliments of Golf Course Builders Association of America.

Many thanks to Phat Katz Catering, Inc. for once again hitting a hole-in-one for the food! DELICIOUS! Congratulations to Marcus Byrd for winning the tournament and kudos to everyone that collected hisautograph! Frame it!

Kudos to all the pros playing on the APGA Tour and hope to see you again next year at the clinic and at thetournament with at least two busloads of spectators!

Philip Raoul and Kevin Hall

Juniors with AJ watch great golf!

Cassandra Curry, Rashawn Williams, Kevin Hall

May Harvey and pro Andrew Walker

Valiyah wrote. “I LOVE GOLF.”

William, United Bus Lines

South Shore Cultural Center