Today was a special day at the Golf Academy of America in Phoenix. That’s because for the first time in the school’s history, there was a tournament at TopGolf in Gilbert. As part of our Managing Golf Facility Operations and Planning/Organization of Tournament Golf classes earlier this semester, we got a unique, behind-the-scenes tour of TopGolf specifically in preparation for today’s event.
Food and drinks were provided. That was cool. But because today’s two-hour event was optional and because only 66 of 100 players signed up, Campus Director Tim Eberlein elected to use the extra money he’d budgeted on even more food!
Instead of just chips and salsa, both of which were fantastic, we got to try the Buffalo Spring Rolls, grilled chicken shish kebabs with four dipping sauces, and prosciutto, artichoke, and tomato skewers drizzled with a balsamic glaze. I’ve been to TopGolf a few times now, and I have to say, I’ve never had a bad meal!
The game our class chose to play was TopGolf. We signed-up in six-person teams within the last month or so, and after about an hour of open play, the tournament got underway. TopGolf is the facility’s signature event in which players score points by hitting balls (assigned using proprietary microchip technology) into any of several colored targets. The more accurate the shot and the farther the distance, the more points players can earn.
Shots hit into the black, white, or blue targets or inside one of the target’s shaded areas means the next shot is worth double. Each of the team’s players hit 20 balls, and we had a great time competiting. It doesn’t really matter who won or lost, but I hope the school elects to hold an event like this again in the future. It was a great way to end the semester.
Congratulations are in order for Gabe de Wilde. He shot the school’s highest individual score of 331 using nothing but a 4-iron. Pretty impressive.