Bag Pipes, a Dead Guy, and a 50-foot Putt for $5,000

A gentleman is someone who knows how to play the bagpipes and doesn't--or something like that.

Tuensang A gentleman is someone who knows how to play the bagpipes and doesn’t–or something like that. This gentleman, whose name is Geordie, is from England. He says that he has “never touched a golf cue.” He was the official greeter at the 2014 McCormick Irish Open.

Each spring, on either St. Patrick’s Day or the Saturday immediately after St. Patrick’s Day, the World’s Second-Best Golf Club conducts a tournament called the McCormick Irish Open. It’s a five-man scramble, flighted by handicap. Mike Riley, who runs it, told me, “Every team gets their total handicap divided by ten. That’s not very fair, but I’m bitter.” The tournament is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Byron H. “Doc” McCormick, who died in 1998. Before this year’s tournament began, a participant sanctified Doc’s memorial plaque, near the lower putting green, by pouring Irish whiskey on it:

McCormick PlaqueDon’t worry about the waste—there was lots more whiskey:

whiskey tableBefore everyone teed off, someone sang “Danny Boy”, from sheet music:

P1070123 (2)Then, green beer:

clay and christine

There was golf, too, of course. But there was also a raffle. The winner was Pat, who bought lots of tickets and wore a kilt:

pat kiltPat’s raffle prize was one chance to sink a fifty-foot putt for five thousand dollars:

The World’s Second Best Golf Club is in northern Florida, so their fairways aren’t three-quarters covered with snow. You can read more the club here, here, and here.

McCormick hat