The Buzz From The 2016 PGA Golf Show
By Brian Weis
The PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, Fla., is golf's grand summit, an event were people, places and things come together to present what's new, available and ahead for the industry. In its seventh decade, this year is no different, and if the Demo Day and Show Floor exhibitors are indicative, 2016 will be an exciting, compelling year as the following re-caps illustrate.
GolfBoard is the hit of the 2016 show, and it's easy to understand why. Who doesn't enjoy an easy-to-ride vehicle that allows riders of all ages to "surf the earth" while enjoying the game they love? Some of golf's greatest players have a blast using GolfBoard, as the following video link shows.
GolfBoard is now offered at 120 courses in the US, Canada, and Mexico and hundreds of individual golfers - including PGA Tour stars and A-List celebrities - have purchased units. Look for GolfBoard to come to a course near you this year.
More Information: www.golfboard.com
It's a Ryder Cup year - held in the Midwest no less (Hazeltine National near Minneapolis) - and that's when Premier Golf thrives. And that's why its PGA Merchandise Show booth was buzzing with visitors. Premier has been licensed by the PGA of America as the exclusive distributor of Ryder Cup packages in the United States and Europe since 1991. If you have never been to a Ryder Cup, suffice it to say that there is no more electric event in golf. This year may be your best chance ever, and with the ticket lottery long past, Premier can ensure you're there through one of its luxury packages.
More Information: www.premiergolf.com
While we'd all like to golf year-round in ideal playing weather, the Midwestern U.S. - and nearly three-fourths of North America - demands that players withstand occasional cold, wind and precipitation. Fortunately, Galvin Green offers premium outerwear, tops, bottoms and accessories for men, women and juniors. The company developed the sport's first apparel layering system - the Multi-Layer Concept - more than a decade ago. Apparently Galvin Green's products perform well, otherwise the company would not be the Official Team Supplier of Outerwear to the 2016 and 2018 European Ryder Cup Teams. Think those Euro players know anything about performing well in less than ideal weather?
More Information: www.galvingreen.com
LostGolfBalls.com (a subsidiary of PG Professional Golf) is the No.1 seller of recycled golf balls in the world. They use an assortment of divers to retrieve balls from ponds in every U.S. state and clean and sort them based on condition at their Texas headquarters. LostGolfBalls.com provides customers with "like new" balls at a fraction of MSRP prices. This includes all major brands, including Titleist ProV1s starting at $12.99. The company has grown tremendously over the past few years and is now responsible for 6% of all golf balls sold on Earth.
More Information: www.lostgolfballs.com
The portable SC200 Swing Caddie Launch Monitor ($349.99) is an optimal training device and allows access to a launch monitor virtually anywhere. With its voice enabled capability, the SC200 simultaneously displays and calls out carry distance, swing speed, ball speed and smash factor after each swing. Operating in practice, target and random mode, the SC200 Swing Caddie allows players to receive specific instant feedback. The remote control allows setting changes without moving. Designed to eliminate the hassle of complicated distance measurement during a round of golf, the VC300 ($129.99) offers voice guidance and hands-free operation. It gives quick and accurate measurements to the front, back and center of greens and automatically recognizes which course and hole is in play. Its clip-on design and simple touch technology makes use a breeze. No additional subscription fees.
More Information: www.voicecaddie.com/en-us/
Pioneers of "Live Golf Scoring" technology, VPAR gives amateur golfers the pro-like competitive thrill of real-time leaderboards as they play a match. At the 2016 PGA Show, the company introduced the VPAR Club Platform, which joins the award-winning VPAR mobile app and VPAR Tournament Service. The VPAR app allows everyday golfers to take the live scoring experience with them for buddy trips or regular matches. It provides live scoring, detailed GPS, a 30,000-course directory, weather updates, stat analysis, scorecard archiving and social media integration. The basic version is free to download on Apple and Android devices. What are you waiting for?
More Information: www.vpar.com/
Big Max Golf
BIG MAX GOLF, pioneer of the three-wheeled push cart, showcased the Autofold FF at the PGA Merchandise Show. Its distinguishing element is the new flat-fold technology whereby all three wheels fold with the push of a single lever. The cart is easy to transport and store thanks to its compact design, while its durable frame holds any type and size of golf bag. Select BIG MAX GOLF items are available at golf retailers in North America.
More Information: www.bigmaxusa.com
Youth on Course
Youth on Course is a non-profit that is growing the game through providing access to golf and its many benefits to kids. Offering rounds of $5 or less to all YOC members (membership ranges from $5-20 yearly), YOC programs are available in nine states and quickly expanding. Midwest associations are expected to adopt YOC in 2016. Let your area association know that you want YOC in your state. Rounds are subsidized by private donors, golf associations and accompanying foundations - so courses do not lose money. College scholarships for deserving members, paid internships and caddie programs are other YOC initiatives.
More Information: www.youthoncourse.org
Golf Life Navigators
Get of the Midwestern cold and get into the Sunshine State! GLN is the brainchild of two PGA professionals who formed a South Florida "dream team" with in-market real estate experts. GLN provides a free service that helps people looking to find ideally suited golf clubs and or real estate properties or communities. Gary Van Sickle describes GLN in the December 2015 issue of GOLF Magazine.
The demand for GLN's services is intense based on a confluence of factors - approximately 300,000 people move to Florida each year, 10,000 people a day turn 65 (and will every day for the next 12 years) and many people relocate within the state on a relatively frequent basis. Considering there are more than 1,200 golf clubs in Florida and hundreds of thousands of real estate properties, finding the right fit can be an overwhelming and very stressful task.
GLN services extend to providing a comprehensive service provider list to further ease clients' transitions. These run the gamut from HVAC and tax accounting firms to top restaurants and interior decor consultants and everything in between.
More Information: www.golflifenavigators.com
Revised: 01/28/2016 - Article Viewed 31,111 Times
About: Brian Weis
Brian Weis is the Publisher of GolfTrips.com, a network of golf travel and directory sites including GolfWisconsin.com, GolfMichigan.com, ArizonaGolfer.com, GolfAlabama.com, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.
All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched GolfWisconsin.com. In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and GolfTrips.com was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like GolfTrips.com, GolfGuide.com and GolfPackages.com. It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.
On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.
Contact Brian Weis:
GolfTrips.com - Publisher and Golf Traveler