Everyone’s a champ at Junior Golf Camp

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The annual Canyon Lake Junior Golf Camp concluded on Friday with a family barbecue, awards ceremony and prize giveaway.

More than 130 juniors, ranging from ages five to 18, participated in the annual camp July 9 through July 13. Each day throughout the week, the juniors received golf instruction and participated in agility courses. Instructors focused on different techniques each day.

Participants ran obstacle courses, dribbled soccer balls with their feet, learned to swing a golf club while standing in a hula hoop and participated in other games and skills lessons during the week-long camp.

The kid-friendly competitions and on-course learning kept campers excited and engaged. By the end of the week, the juniors learned fundamental skills, etiquette, rules and sportsmanship.

On the final day of camp, participants tested the skills they learned throughout the week. The skills test included a driving distance and accuracy test, iron distance an accuracy test, chipping accuracy test and putting test.

The skills competition winners are as follows:

Ages five and six: William Dupree with 57 points.

Ages seven and eight: Gavin Griffin with 52 points.

Ages nine and 10: Caleb Pefley with 50 points.

Ages 11 to 18: Elliott Langston with 63 points.

The event concluded with an awards ceremony and family barbecue at the golf course. More than 250 attendees received a complimentary lunch, served up by volunteer cooks Joe Kamashian, Travis Montgomery and Barry Talbot.

After lunch, the skills competition winners were announced and each child who participated in the camp received a medal and prize. Drones, boogie boards, pool toys, games and golf items were among the prizes. Each participant also received a hat and shirt at registration.

The event camp is hosted by Golf Pro Pat Kembell who organized the camp with the help of golf instructors Bryan Carlson, Aaron McKay, Carlos Yebra, Baylee Barckley, Kylien Gunnell, Dave Shankland and instruction volunteers Coby Mora of Elsinore High School golf, MJ Watkins of Temescal Canyon High School golf and Nixon Lauritzen of Canyon Lake Junior Golf Academy.

The program received donations from the Canyon Lake Chamber of Commerce, Canyon Lake 9er Golf Club and Jim Paulis of the Horserace Tournaments.

Elsinore Valley Municipal Water District provided 12 cases of water and Canyon Lakers Jesse and KK Beecher provided each participant with a fidget spinner.

More than 15 volunteers from the Women’s Golf Club, 9ers Golf Club and Men’s Golf Club helped to organize registration, prize set up and gifts.

Pat would like to thank all the volunteers, sponsors and instructors. “A special thank you to the Canyon Lake Country Club manager Krissy Cissell and chef Alex Garcia,” said Pat. “We are a great team at the county club working together to make all the experiences for our patrons great.”

Next year’s Junior Golf Camp is set for July 8 through July 12.

The Canyon Lake Junior Golf Camp was founded in 1980 by PGA Golf Pro Gabe Hrab. Since its inception, thousands of children have participated in the program. Canyon Lakers bid farewell to Gabe in t when he left the community after 14 years to accept a position as instructor at the Menifee Lakes Country Club.

Photo Donna Ritchie

Photo Donna Ritchie

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Donna Ritchie