Senior golf (for those 55 and over) is popular in Maine and elsewhere. Just look at the number of senior golf organizations in the state and the growing number of tournaments.

In recognition of the expanding number of golfing baby boomers, the Maine State Golf Association began a senior tour four years ago. The number of tournaments has increased each year; there are 13 events in 2010.

The opening tournament is Tuesday at Brunswick Golf Course. The field is full and there’s a waiting list.

Equally as popular are the Southern Maine Seniors, the Central Maine Seniors and the Maine Seniors, the first senior golf organization in the state, which celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2007.

The junior golfers of the 1960s are the senior golfers of today. Adding to the number of senior golfers are those who took up the sport later in life.

Randy Hodsdon, a tournament administrator with the MSGA and a golf pro, said golf demographics is the reason behind the expansion of tournaments for senior golfers.

“We probably could have tripled the number of senior tournaments this year,” he said.

Just as the regular population is aging, so too is the golf population. Normally that might be a cause for concern, but Hodsdon feels the prevalence of junior programs over the last few years will sustain golf.

“Golf never really booms, but it also never goes flat,” he said. “The junior programs have been so big that I think golf will revive a little bit down the road.”

 

TEE TO GREEN: The deadline to enter the men’s Maine Amateur Championship is June 2. Exempt players are required to send in an entry form with $125. Players attempting to qualify must pay a $50 entry fee for their qualifying date. Those who do qualify must pay an additional $75, due by cash or check, no later than five days following that player’s qualifying tournament.

The qualifying tournaments are June 14 at Fox Ridge in Auburn, June 17 at Toddy Brook in North Yarmouth and June 22 at Penobscot Valley in Orono. Fox Ridge and Toddy Brook are first-time qualifying sites.

The 91st Maine Amateur is July 6-8 at Kebo Valley in Bar Harbor.

After Kebo Valley, the next two Maine Amateurs will be played at Portland Country Club in 2011 and Sunday River in 2012.

The entry deadline is May 12 for the Club Team Championship on May 23 at Belgrade Lakes.

The men’s New England Amateur entry deadline is May 27. The tournament will be played July 20-22 at Yale Golf Course in New Haven, Conn. …

Matt Greenleaf of Portland birdied his last four holes in the weekly MSGA amateur tournament at Biddeford-Saco Country Club on May 1 to finish with an even-par 71 and tie for low gross in Flight 1 with Brandon Wohl. Greenleaf, 28, made a four-foot putt for a birdie on the par-3 15th, sank a foot putt on the par-4 16th, then drove over the pond on the par-5 17th, a carry he estimated at 270 yards. He reached the green in two and two-putted for the birdie. On 18, he made his longest putt, a 20-footer.

His foursome birdied the last five holes and won team gross honors with a 63. Team members were Mike and Pat Doran and Ashley Fifield.

At last weekend’s MSGA tournament, Ricky Jones won with a 67. Mike Norris was second with a 70.

 

Staff Writer Tom Chard can be reached at 791-6419 or at:

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