The Lowcountry has a well-deserved reputation as a premier golf destination with stunningly beautiful courses and talented local players. With the help of golf programs at area high schools, Hilton Head Island and the surrounding communities are sure to maintain that reputation for years to come.
HILTON HEAD GOLF
LOWCOUNTRY GOLF HALL OF FAME RECOGNIZES THOSE WHO PUT — AND KEEP — HILTON HEAD ATOP GOLFERS’ FAVORITE DESTINATIONS
For decades, Hilton Head Island, Bluffton and the rest of Beaufort County have been golf destinations, drawing thousands of players a year to private and public courses and communities made famous by the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing, movies such as “The Legend of Bagger Vance” and poll results that list Hilton Head as the favorite location for PGA Tour players.
Since 1969, when swashbuckling Arnold Palmer mesmerized television viewers with one of his patented final-round charges on Harbour Town Golf Links to win the inaugural Heritage Classic (as it was then called), the Sea Pines Resort has topped the charts as a must-play golf destination. Myriad honors from top golf publications have followed year after year, but no one would ever accuse the Lowcountry legend of resting on its laurels.
Hilton Head Island and the Lowcountry have become a golf mecca for a variety of players, from PGA Tour stars to the weekend warrior looking to play a round in a sun-drenched, world-class setting. As much as adults flock to area golf courses, the island has also become a center for a thriving junior golf industry.
From locals looking to raise their games in hopes of earning golf-based college scholarships to international families sending their children to the U.S. to master the game in hopes of PGA fame, Hilton Head has quickly earned a reputation as one of the top training grounds in the world.
Country music icon Darius Rucker returns to Hilton Head Island this month to once again support the collegiate golf tournament that bears his name. Yet with all due respect to the former Hootie and the Blowfish frontman, the true stars of the week will again be the talented women golfers walking the fairways and stalking the greens of the famed Long Cove Club.
From the turf to the register, making it green is the primary concern of golf course operators across the country, including those here in the nature-rich South Carolina Lowcountry. Yet for many right-minded pros, superintendents and owners in Hilton Head and Bluffton, going “green” is equally important to growing and succeeding when it comes to managing a responsible golf course operation.
For more than five decades, Hilton Head Island and the surrounding Lowcountry area have been sharpening their reputations as the finest golf destinations not only on the East Coast, but also around the globe.
When the sun is shining and refreshing winds are blowing during the spring and fall, that designation is difficult to argue with. Even when the temperature is turned up in the summer months, southern Beaufort County’s acclaimed courses are full of vacationing golfers beating the heat by playing in the early morning or late afternoon.
First Tee of the Lowcountry introduces kids to golf through educational programs
Golf needs an influx of new participants who could provide positive forward momentum for the sport. Children need a safe and welcoming environment to play, exposure to positive social and life skills and time spent exercising outside instead of playing online inside.
While it seems like a perfect match of needs and benefits, for a number of reasons golf and juniors haven’t connected the way one might think they should. Chief among those reasons has been a lack of exposure and affordable access to the game for middleclass and less-advantaged children, who have tended to flock more to traditional team sports such as football and soccer that are easier to play and pay for.