For the past several years the game of golf has seen a decline. This is due to many reasons. The affordability to play and the time spent on the links are just two of the reasons. The number of junior golfers being introduced to the game has also declined because of course availability and the time they spend on new technological devices and social media. The Myrtle Beach area golf courses can be quite difficult for juniors to play because of the “for profit” outlook and the courses having to make the most yield possible. This is not to say that there are no Myrtle Beach golf courses that welcome juniors, but it is difficult to squeeze in juniors when the demand for peak season rates is so important to the course bottom line.
Eagle Nest Golf Club in Little River is one course that not only welcomes junior golfers but promotes junior golf in many ways. The Elliott family has been involved in the Myrtle Beach golf business for nearly 50 years and they have always believed in “growing the game” through junior golf. Eagle Nest has allowed the North Myrtle Beach boys and girl’s golf teams to practice and play at no charge for approximately 10 years. Rick Elliot stated that “Eagle Nest loves junior golfers and recognizes that not all junior golfers can make the financial commitment to play…so if we can give some golf away to youngsters who will be our games future and keep the interest in those kids then we can keep the game moving forward and building upon the industry.”
Eagle Nest also offers special low rates for all juniors and heavy discounts for tournaments/groups throughout the year.
Eagle Nest is also a big supporter of The First Tee of the Grand Strand and has hosted an After School Program for 2 seasons (Spring 2015 and Fall 2015) and is looking forward to host the Spring 2016 season. The program is held on Saturdays from 2:00 P.M. to 3:30 P.M. for an eight week period with participants ranging in age from 7 to 14 years old. Patrick O’Brien, Program Director, stated that “ For the past 2 seasons Eagle Nest has been an extremely hospitable site for our program providing any assistance when needed. They provide their entire range and practice area to our program for our allotted time every Saturday for our eight week seasons.”
The First Tee of the Grand Strand is a youth development program in which golf is used as the context. The program is a pivotal youth program being located in the “Golf Capitol” of the United States to provide positive character and motor skill programming while growing the game of golf by engaging and introducing youth to the game. In turn, creating more future golfers and model youth individuals.
Thanks to Eagle Nest Golf Club, The First Tee of the Grand Strand, all of the great Myrtle Beach golf courses and many PGA professionals that promote junior golf and growing the game.