On October 6th, 2016, I played 18 holes split between two beautiful venues… life’s tough I know! I was hired for the first 9 holes for a playing lesson at The Oaks with two fabulous members of The Oaks (a couple). The second 9 holes was spent with my wife, and two sons Jackson (5 years old) & Graham (3 years old) at Candia Woods.
This day may very well have been the best weather we’ve had all year! 70 degrees at tee off, no wind, and The Oaks was in spectacular condition (as usual). The greens were rolling about an 11.0 on the stimpmeter. This was a playing lesson so my main focus was on my two students and their games. I fielded questions ranging from the swing, the rules of golf and on-course strategy. Also, one of the many perks of a “playing lesson” is that the golf professional plays his/her own ball during the lesson. I know I gained valuable experience just by watching my dad (a PGA Pro) play at a young age, so I try to incorporate a lot of what he taught during my playing lessons.
Needless to say; the playing lesson at The Oaks was a huge success as both students said “we now know what we have to practice to lower our scores” and “it was great to watch you play your own ball”. (I shot a 4 under par 31!!!). They wanted me to continue on the back 9, but I couldn’t because each Thursday evening I take my family golfing Candia Woods.
When we arrived at Candia Woods (4:30pm), again the weather and course conditions were awesome. This was a playing lesson as well but to a different crowd. I play the back tees so I teed off first. I made sure to go through my entire pre-shot routine as I knew the boys were eagerly watching and awaiting their turn. I stripped one down the middle with a slight fade and got a nice “golf clap” from the boys. The boys followed by attempting a pre-shot routine of their own and drilled it down the middle as well. During the 9 holes I didn’t field any questions about swing. I typically use this family golf time to teach the boys golf etiquette, some basic rules and allow them to visually learn from their dad like I did at their age.
We had a great time playing Candia Woods. The highlight was watching my boys experience their first greenside bunker shot. They both got out in 1 shot! Also, because I played so well at The Oaks during my playing lesson I wanted to see how low of a score I could shoot (front 9 at The Oaks, back 9 at Candia Woods). I added up the two nines and wouldn’t you know I carded a career low round of 63!
So a tale of two nines indeed with the best company you could hope for. I hope to see you all on the links often. There’s still plenty of good golf – Get out here!
Your PGA Pro,
Shaun Bishop, PGA
Director of Golf
The Oaks Golf Links