Something pretty special took place on July 11th. It was the 100th anniversary of the PGA of Canada.
If you have been a reader of Flagstick through the years you will likely have read my many mentions of the origins of organized golf in Canada. The founding of what is now Golf Canada and the PGA of Canada took place in the nation’s capital region. It is something we are very proud of but is often ignored by the rest of the country. In fact, many people are far from familiar with the quality of golf we have in Ottawa-Gatineau and surrounds.
Monday, and the Sunday prior helped that quite a bit.
The two days of celebrations for the centenary of the PGA of Canada were like no other event that has been seen in Canadian golf. Other than buying shows where the pros and other industry people mix and mingle, few other times has there been as many Canadian PGA members and golf industry professionals ranging from suppliers to golf course owners, to golf media, in the same room at the same time as there was on Monday night at the Hilton Lac Leamy.
As a person who has been around golf 30 years it made for quite a mash-up of people I have come to know in various ways, in different times of my life, and in places across North America.
Every step I made on Monday night I seemed to run into a friend or industry colleague and caught up on where golf and life and had taken them. I know it was the same for everybody in the room and even a 24-hour marathon cocktail session would not have given us all the time we wanted with each other.
I was most pleased to hear from the people who had been able to enjoy the golf games that were part of the festivities (the Flagstick team was busy with OVGA Intersectionals and could not take part in the golf). To hear the complimentary talk about the layouts at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club and Rivermead Golf Club made me particularly proud. It seems the Toronto-centric crowd is finally beginning to realize that there IS golf in this end of the world and it’s pretty damn good.
So happy birthday to the Canadian PGA and here’s to more people appreciating that quality golf that can be found in what we proudly call the “Flagstick Region”; maybe one day the rankings created by various media outlets will start to reflect the truth of the matter and how we stack up against the rest of the country.
The founders of the PGA of Canada and Golf Canada must have realized it just a bit sooner than most.