Evart golf course reaching out to the younger generation

Volunteer coach showing interested youngsters how to play the game

EVART – Evart doesn’t have varsity golf in its sports program but Birch Valley Golf Course has been working at getting interest in a youth golf club.

The course is located at the intersection of U.S. 10 and M-66 and the club has been for high school-aged athletes or older.

Carol “Scotty” Wojcik from the course, a retired teacher, got the program off the ground with the support of the course managers.

“We have a coach, Gary Earnest, who is very knowledgeable and a very good golfer, and has volunteered already,” Wojcik said. “We’ve gone through this for two weeks. It’s just boys who have signed up. He’s showing them the etiquette of golf.

“Gary instructs them and watches their swing, and watches how they putt the ball when they get to the putting green and is doing a great job with them and holding their interest. It’s wonderful. We’re not a part of the Evart school system. They do not have a golf (program). I’ve had so many kids who come here to play golf and have wanted a youth league. That’s what its all about. Gary’s doing a fantastic job with them.”

Earnest is from Sears.

“He’s been a golfer all his life and he works with people and has the personality to work with kids,” Wojcik said. “He’s very patient.”

The league is usually every Thursday night. Girls are also invited to attend.

“It’s for anybody who wants to learn how to play golf,” Wojcik said. “We thank Birch Valley for allowing us to have it.”

It starts at 6 p.m. and goes for two hours or more. The program will continue all summer.

“On one Thursday, the boys went to practice at his home with driving balls into a net and learning golf etiquette,” Wojcik said. “We’re trying to promote golf. They can come here anytime to practice on their own.”

Earnest said he was contacted by the course to conduct the sessions. Back in 1975, he was an assistant pro at Spring Valley.

“They’re great kids,” he said. “They love it. They understand it’s something new for the rest of their life. I’s nice when they hit a good ball. They really like that.”