Great Outdoors - Mild Winter Means Early Golf Season
Snow is not ideal for playing golf, but the lack of the white fluffy stuff this past winter has helped golf courses get ahead of the game.
"We opened our driving range about mid–March. We got our golf course open right about the end of the month so definitely a much earlier than expected start," said Eric Anderson, head PGA Professional at Enger Park Golf Course in Duluth.
Anderson says not having to fight the heavy ice and snow really helps.
"It's generally nice to have a little bit of blanket of snow out there. This year we didn't. A lot of people were nervous, but the course came through great. So assuming that we get a normal spring of temperatures and moisture and things like that it should be good," said Anderson.
While the snow showers on this day kept most inside, there are always a few golfers willing to stick it out if it means getting on the course earlier than expected.
"We kind of knew that it was going to a little rough but we just wanted to tough it out and get after it," said Louis Shikowsky, an avid golfer and student at the University of Minnesota-Duluth.
Zack Heacox, also a UMD student said, "We've had extraordinarily nice weather. I mean until this point I guess, but I mean I'd expect us to have a pretty long season from now on with all the warm weather we've been having. So I think more people are going to get out because of that."
Despite its up and down climate, Minnesota has been said to have the most golf courses per capita.
Anderson said, "They want to enjoy all the four seasons and all that it has to offer and that's kind of why you see that versus an all year round climate where maybe they take it for granted or maybe it's too hot, even at certain times of the year."
As the weather continues to get warmer, Anderson encourages those considering golf, to give it a try because it's something for all ages and something that lasts a lifetime.
."It keeps you very social, it keeps people active, it's just a very fun way to get out, get some exercise and just have some fun. It also can help you make friends and really just enjoy the outdoors and some activity your whole life," added Anderson.