A golf legend’s visit to Kodiak let some local golfers get some unexpected coaching, and this surprise also gave Kodiak’s Teen Court a chance to do a little fundraising. KMXT’s Mitch Borden has the story.
A small group of golfers are standing on a putting green at the Bear Valley Golf Course in Kodiak. All their attention is focused on their teacher, trying to catch every little piece of wisdom Dave Stockton has to share. At the moment, they’re going over putting.
“Would it surprise you that I could care less about anything in your stroke? What I’m going to ask you to do right now since this is a very important put is that I want to see where you walk and I want to see how you approach it.”
Stockton begins choosing different members of the cluster to try and sink a shot while he watches carefully. There’s a nervous shuffle when someone has to step forward and show what they’ve got.
“Oh boy, do I have to hold your beer? Yeah, hold my beer and watch this.”
Stockton’s been golfing professionally since the 60’s and has won 25 tournaments. As he’s grown older, he’s become known for coaching other golfers on putting and chipping. He also gives a lot of his time and skill to charities. Stockton’s holding this clinic in Kodiak to raise funds for the local Teen Court. He likes helping a good cause, but he really loves helping golfers improve their technique.
“You know I feel like I’m giving back to the game. You know, this case the teen court. In retrospect, obviously a lot of these players are going to be a lot better players because they came to this and learned and if we do get to come back, I’m going to get to hear a lot of great stories. There’s no doubt in my mind.”
Throughout the evening the weather drifts between rain and mist, which is pretty normal for Kodiak. But Stockton worries that it’s affecting morale.
Dave Stockton: “Am I getting you too wet? Do you want I can continue this indoors?”
Golfer 1: “No, this is fine.”
Golfer 2: “We’re use to this.”
Golfer 3: “We play in this all the time.”
Golfer 4: “Are you Okay?”
The weather isn’t dampening Stockton’s spirit either. He’s too caught up in his teaching and admiring the landscape.
“I’m looking on the mountain trying to find the bears. Haven’t seen any bears yet. They’re telling me if I came here in September the salmon would be going right past the golf course. We could fish right off the golf course. This is my idea of heaven.”
While the golfers are standing in the rain, members of the local teen court prepare a steak dinner. This fundraiser helped them raise over $6,000, which surpassed their goal.
As they finish up, Stockton waves the group towards the club house where they’ll enjoy the rest of their night.
“How about we continue this inside and get something to eat.”