Tallahassee, Florida – Golf industry leaders recently met with legislators during the much anticipated State Golf Day in Florida. The event held at the Capitol and sponsored by the Golf Florida Alliance, a collaboration of top organizations representing all sectors of the state’s golf business.
The distinguished members of GFA convened with the Senate and House of Representatives to discuss the industry’s impact on economy, growth of youth-oriented programs, and improved sustainability systems.
Attendees of the significant gathering included [goingout to="http://www.flheritage.com/"]Florida Division of Historical Resources[/goingout]; Florida State Golf Association; Club Managers Association of America (Florida Chapter); Florida Golf Course Superintendents Association; PGA Golf Management Program of Florida State University; National Golf Course Owners Association; PGA of America (North-South Florida segments); PGA Tour; Golf Channel; LGPA; Florida Turfgrass Association; World Golf Foundation; USGA Green Section; The First Tee; and World Golf Hall of Fame.
According to a [goingout to="http://www.golf2020.com/media/12459/economicimpact_fl_golf_full_report_final_7.pdf"]2007 study conducted by SRI International and commissioned by GOLF 20/20[/goingout], the direct golf economic impact of golf in the state is approximately $7.5 billion annually, giving an income of $4.7 billion in annual wage income and sustaining more than 167,000 jobs. Florida houses more than 1,100 private and public golf course facilities, the most of any other American state. Additionally, Florida’s flourishing golf industry holds a charitable impact of $312 million per annum, increased through domestic outings and donations from professional golf events.
Steve Mona, CEO of the World Golf Foundation said that Florida’s golf industry clenches a giant influence on the state’s entire economy. He added that the organization’s united message is about the essence of the game resonating well with legislative thinkers and they are looking forward to grow the interest and involvement in the sport.
Meanwhile, The First Tee shared their contribution to the golf industry by positively influencing the young generation by reinforcing its Nine Core Values including integrity, honesty, responsibility, respect, sportsmanship, courtesy, perseverance, confidence and judgment. The organization which started in 1997 is headquartered at St. Augustine, Florida and has 189 chapters and almost 75o programming locations.
Rep. Ed Hooper, Chairman of the Transportation and Economic Development Appropriations Subcommittee expressed that the participation of kids in golf as early as possible is truly positive and it provides the opportunity to conduct them in a professional manner, learn honesty or learn something as simple as math. He further said that golf trains the youngsters to become responsible adults and it’s really a kind of sport they can enjoy for the rest of their lives.
Brad Brewer was featured during the event while an interactive swing zone was installed in the Capitol Courtyard. Brewer, a renowned golf instructor belongs to the Top 50 Florida instructors compiled by Golf Digest and one of the Top 100’s by GOLF Magazine. Plus, the Senate and House members joined a charity putting competition and attendees had the chance to have photo sessions with THE PLAYERS Championship replica trophy.
Earlier this year, Florida hosted “Golf Industry Show” and “PGA Merchandise Show” in Orlando attended by thousands of golf enthusiasts and exhibitors. In 2014, a total of 17 professional golf tours will be hosted by the state which includes six PGA Tour, five Symetra Tour, one Legends Tour, one Web.com Tour, one LPGA Tour and three Champions Tour events.