Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno announces the formation of a new golf education and instruction program for local youth on May 8 event at Franconia Golf Course.
Reminder Publishing submitted photo

SPRINGFIELD — Opening up the world of golf to a younger generation is the goal behind a new program announced by the city of Springfield. A collaboration by several city departments presents the opportunity for golf education and instruction for middle school students during the months of May and June.

At a May 8 announcement, Mayor Domenic Sarno, Springfield Public Schools Superintendent Daniel Warwick and Department of Parks, Buildings, and Recreation Management Executive Director Thomas Ashe revealed the details about the inaugural program alongside students from Van Sickle Academy, PBRM, public school executives and former NBA and Central High School basketball player Travis Best.

Professional Golfer’s Association instructor John Cook will lead the sessions which are available to local youth without charge at Franconia Golf Course on Dwight Road.

Ashe praised the new program and the opportunities for budding golf enthusiasts in the city of Springfield. “We are proud of our nationally recognized municipal golf courses and that we can offer some of the most affordable rates in the area for a positive and family-friendly outdoor recreation activity,” he said. “Increasing access for our local youth to our municipal courses and to learn real golf skills and etiquette from a PGA professional instructor is an opportunity we are very excited to offer for free to our Springfield youth.”

Sarno acknowledged the recent upgrades to both the Franconia and Veterans courses and thanked Golf Course Superintendent Anthony Kowal and his staff for their contributions as well as their instructional skills for students at Putnam Vocational Technical Academy who at the same time, will have the opportunity to learn about golf course landscaping, grounds and turf management from the group.

“Superintendent Warwick, PBRM Executive Director Ashe, Recreation Director Piteo, Springfield Public Schools Athletic Director Dwayne Early and I are excited to bring this golf program to the middle school students of Springfield,” Sarno said.

The sessions start on May 14 from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays and will continue through the middle of June, picking up again in September.

More information on the program is available by calling 413-787-2711.

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