MIDWAY, UTAH—Each year, Soldier Hollow Golf Course hosts a Military Appreciation Day to thank our great nation’s active military and veterans for their service and sacrifices. And each year, Soldier Hollow is kind enough to host the UGF’s Veterans on Course program as its featured military program.
Sixty active duty and military personnel attended the free event for a chance to learn more about the great sport of golf, play nine holes in a social setting and enjoy a dinner with an inspirational guest speaker.
As always, the event kicked off with three stations of lessons from some of Utah golf’s talented PGA Professionals. Jordan Bloxham of Impact Golf Center and Ryan Harper of The First Tee of Utah taught the basics of a full swing on the driving range. Dennis Mead, military veteran and teaching professional from Meadow Brook Golf Course, lead the veterans in putting drills on the practice green, and Todd Heugly from Crane Field Golf Course shared his expertise on chipping.
The participants were fortunate to play the front nine of Soldier Hollow’s Silver Course. Carl Price won the closest-to-the-hole contest on the par-3 No. 3, Madril Warren earned the W on No. 5 and Shane Brooks clinched the closest-to title over three other veterans on No. 7. Spencer Bolingbroke, Bob Raaum, Justin Smith and Craig Sorenson carded a nine-hole scramble round of five-under 31 to claim the overall victory.
Following play, Brandon Ashby, USA Paralympian, gave us all the privilege of listening to his incredible story. Ashby grew up in Boulder, Colorado, and enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2000-2004. He was stationed in Beaufort, South Carolina, and served in Iraq in OIF1.
Taking a break from engineering and building work in 2017, he joined up with blind ski racer and Navy veteran Kevin Burton on the U.S. Paralympic Team to guide him through the World Cup and Paralympics during the 2017-18 season. Together, they finished second in the World Cup overall in downhill, and while they didn’t win any medals at the Paralympics, they took fifth in the super combined.
He currently lives in Park City with his wife and chocolate lab, where he tries to ski and bike as often as possible.
The Utah Golf Foundation would like to thank Soldier Hollow Golf Course for hosting another VOC event and Jordan, Ryan, Dennis and Todd for teaching and supporting the UGF.
The next event, VOC at River Oaks on Thursday, August 30th, is open for registration at utahgolffoundation.org. Contact Program Director Megan Huntsman at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions regarding all things UGF.