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Brian Pavlet tops golf show

Ed Townsend - Columnist
Posted 4/9/20

Golf during the winters month is pretty boring so golfers are happy to make the annual trip to Edison, New Jersey for the New Jersey North Coast Golf and Travel Show.

This year, the show -- staged …

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Brian Pavlet tops golf show

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Golf during the winters month is pretty boring so golfers are happy to make the annual trip to Edison, New Jersey for the New Jersey North Coast Golf and Travel Show.

This year, the show -- staged February 28 through March 1 -- offered golfers the Long Putt Challenge which featured the 70-foot sidewinder putting course and required the perfect line, speed and luck to tame. The putting hole had plenty of undulation and breaks and is one of the golf shows most exciting competitions. A golf tournament-like roar can be heard throughout the show when a putt is holed. Contestants win prizes on the number of putts holed. The more you make the more you win.

Joe Stegh, show manager, always makes sure his shows give fun, competition and lots of golf equipment and accessories for the buying public.

Making a return appearance was Brian Pavlet, known as one of the greatest showmen in sports history and one of the most recognizable faces in professional golf and golfers gave him a standing ovation during his show. Brian and I bonded several years ago and he always makes sure he comes down to see and talk to me after his show. A great professional.

Brian brings to his show a highly respected career that includes launching a 435-yard blast in Salt Lake City, Utah in a regional competition and then went to the National Long Drive Championship and won it all. In 1993, the golf world familiarized itself with a new prodigy in Brian Pavlet and since winning he has never looked back. He has made a record eight “Final 8” appearances in the Re/Max World Long Drive Championships and has been the LDA's most consistent performer the past decade.

Brian held the No. 1 ranked position for more than 20 months and was featured in Golf Digest for having one of the best power swings in golf.

And the highlight of his show is when he drives a golf ball through a piece of plywood.

The show has become a great mid-winter break for many New York and Tri-County area golfers and is a showcase for many golf facilities. In years past there were always several area golf facilities in attendance but none made an appearance this year.

Other special guests at this weekend show were PGA section pros.

We tab this show as a consumer golf exposition, in a three-day “Golf Theme Park” that featured a wide array of displays, demonstrations and interactive activities designed to educate and entertain the golf enthusiast.

Upwards of 200 booths with exhibitors from across the country attended and offered for sale the latest in golf equipment and accessories as well as golf apparel, artwork, real estate and golf destination packages.

Numerous participatory activities were also available for golfers of all skill levels. There was the long-drive championship, the manufacturers demo range, and free lessons from PGA Professionals. The demo range also was popular where you could swing, hit and compare the latest clubs.

Ed's Outlook

Many of the local golf course management folks have expressed the fact that they have been waiting to get final word when they can open.

But the good news is that the grass is growing, trees are waiting to bud and it won't be too long before you will be able to tee it up.

Golfing Highlights is back and we will continue to provide you with a column filled with golf league statistics, league standings, tournament information, the happenings on our local golf courses, new golf equipment, tips each week from local golf professionals, Ed's Outlook and golf feature stories.

Special attention this week goes out to all golf course professionals, managers and secretaries to please fill out the form we sent you and email it back to us so that we can accurately let golfers know what is going on at your facility.

Golf Tip

By Bob Menges

Spring is finally here. And we will know soon when we can start our golf activities. While we are planning our golf season here are some tips to help you get going.

As you get out on the course and start playing, and if you are like me, you get excited and the thrill of low scores runs through our heads. If you are trying something new with your swing, be careful not to overload your brain with too many new thoughts. Sometimes when you think too much your body may shut down physically. I would suggest going back to the beginning.

Remember the three fundamentals a good golfer tries to repeat each time he or she swings, grip, aim and set up. First always be sure you are gripping the club properly and try to maintain a light grip pressure. A big fault for early golf is to become frustrated at bad shots and start gripping the club too hard and then your arms and hands will not be able to help you swing the club.

When you set up, work on your posture and remember to keep your feet closer together than you think. For iron shots, the outsides of your feet should be shoulder width apart, and for hybrids and woods, the insides of your feet should be shoulder width apart. When your stance gets too wide, you have a tendency to slide your hips instead of rotating them. Try to let your arms hang underneath your shoulders to allow for less tension in your forearms.

Golf is a target game, so always try to aim at something for every shot. Try to develop a pre shot routine by standing behind the ball and picking a target, then walk around to the side of the ball and get set up parcel to your target line.

Remember spring golf is the time to develop good habits that will make you become a better golfer as the summer gets closer. The goal is to steadily improve as the year goes on.

Robert Menges is the head golf professional at the Swan Lake Golf & Country Club on Mt. Hope Road in Swan Lake. He is available for private lessons and if you have a question or subject you would like covered, he can be reached by telephone at 845-292-0323 and 845-866-5567or via email at bobmenges22@gmail.com

The Putting Tip

By Geoff Walsh

The circumference of a golf hole is 4 1/4in. Imagine that all you have to do is start the ball on this wide stripe to be a successful putter. I see most players practicing putting with the use of a thin string or chalk line....what a daunting task to start the ball consistently on such a thin stripe.

Set up your lines at four inches wide or imagine a 4- inch stripe on your intended line of putt....like putting down the interstate.

Bonus tip: Slow greens? Cut the break in half and be firm with your stroke.

PGA Professional Geoff Walsh will be available for private or group lessons when the course opens and if you have a question or subject you would like covered he can be reached at 845-434-2620.

Ed Townsend is a Public Relations Consultant to the Sport of Golf and brings over 60 years of sports journalism experience in writing and compiling the information for this column. If you have league or tournament information, shoot a hole-in-one, let Ed know at 845-439-8177, email bght75@gmail.com or fax to 845-205-4474. View this column and Ed's photos at http://bght.blogspot.com We are also on Facebook and Twitter.

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