Exhilarating and dispiriting, thrilling and embarrassing, joyous and depressing — no activity on Earth encompasses the full emotional spectrum like golf — and that’s why we love it! This October 4, celebrate National Golf Lovers Day by recognizing one of the world’s most popular sports.
Hit the links and play a round as you enjoy a few competitive and friendly laughs with your fellow sufferers. While golf can drive even the greatest players completely bonkers, hitting just one good shot means you can’t wait to tee it up again. In other words, “just grip it and rip it.”
National Golf Lovers Day timeline
The USGA is born
Delegates from the Newport Country Club, Saint Andrew’s Golf Club, Yonkers, New York, The Country Club, Chicago Golf Club and Shinnecock Hills Golf Club meet in New York City to form the United States Golf Association (USGA).
Golf embraces “the bird”
The term “birdie” is coined accidentally by golfer, Ab Smith, when he hits a “bird of a shot” at a tourney in Atlantic City.
- October 17, 1860
The first-ever pro golf tournament is held
The world’s oldest golf tournament is The Open Championship, which was first played at Prestwick Golf Club in Ayrshire, Scotland.
Golf tees off
The modern version of golf comes about in Scotland as King James II officially recognizes the game.
National Golf Lovers Day Activities
Experience a new course
Playing in a different environment can help improve your golf game, so accept an invitation from a friend to play at a private country club, or to check out a new public course.
Take a golf lesson
Learn to play or improve your game by letting a pro coach you. Almost all golfers will admit to needing help with their swing, and lessons can help you improve dramatically. Remember, as the legendary Jack Nicklaus said, “Don’t be too proud to take lessons. I’m not.”
Plan a trip to a major tournament
Check the PGA schedule and select the best time and place to go to your first big golfing event. Whether you're enjoying the coastal beauty of 17-Mile Drive at Pebble Beach, admiring the spring azaleas at Augusta, or honoring golf’s roots at The Open in Scotland, golf gives you back your swing!
5 Facts To Impress Your Golfing Foursome
The über rare shot
The average golfer has a 12,500-to-1 chance of making a hole-in-one.
The wet 'n wild 17th at Sawgrass
Over 100,000 golf balls are hit into the water at the famous 17th “island hole” at Stadium course at Sawgrass each year.
Caddies are French
The French word “cadet” means “youngest child” and is where the word “caddy” comes from.
You’re not alone
Only 20 percent of golfers have a handicap below 18, and a golfer with a handicap of 18 or higher is called a “bogey golfer."
Space golf? Yep!
Apollo 14 astronaut Alan Shepard famously took a golf ball along with him to the moon — where a swing of his 6-iron made him the first person to play golf in space.
Why We Love National Golf Lovers Day
It’s a great hobby
Golf is a rare hobby that combines exercise, the great outdoors, dedicated time with others, skill and friendly competition. Anyone can pick up a club and hit the course — which makes golf a great way to spend some time outdoors and away from computer screens, TVs, and the daily grind.
You’ve heard of a runner’s high? Golfers have their own version and it takes place on an uncrowded golf course, walking quietly around the green landscape, proceeding at a leisurely pace as you soak it all in.
It’s for everyone
The fact that men, women and children can play golf equitably on the same golf course is one of the game’s greatest benefits. It's the perfect blend of social event and exercise. Plus, there’s something about golf’s humbling nature that brings everyone together. No one is immune from embarrassment, and that is liberating to the family dynamic.
National Golf Lovers Day dates