NEPGA Vegas ProAm is One for the Ages
-Las Vegas, NV
The NEPGA annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas is preceded by lots of anticipation regardless of the various specifics. The allure of the Vegas strip can do that, with the lights and the glam and the visions of one pull of a slot machine leading to instant riches. Mix in the chance to play golf with your friends, and the build-up is palpable. The 2018 edition seemed to have some more mystique than usual however, once it was announced that the NEPGA would be visiting Shadow Creek, the top-30 in the U.S. ranked course just north of the Vegas strip. Shadow would be joining the hidden gem Southern Highlands and Siena for our best rotation of courses in the 18-year history of this event. With all-of these things lined up, we had our largest number of teams in history with 46, and the event sold out in June, a full five months before it was to take place.
Adding to the opportunity to play Shadow Creek was the news that the two most famous golfers of the modern era, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, would be playing a first-of-its-kind match at Shadow Creek just 10 days after the NEPGA would be there. This 9-Million Dollar, winner take all pay-per-view special would no doubt mean that Shadow Creek would be in perfect shape, and the course would be on the minds of the collective golf world in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving weekend. Mix in an HBO 24/7 special dedicated to ‘The Match’ released just before our ProAm began, and everyone was brimming with excitement to tee it up at this special venue. Little did we know, our New England PGA ProAm would write its own bit of history at Shadow Creek.
Coming Up Aces
Paesani, Ray Cash in on Hole in One Pool
What would you do with $24,000? Not quite as exciting a proposition as say, $1.6 Billion Dollars, but for us in the golf business, a 24k win-fall could certainly put a bow on another golf season of grinding through lessons, member events and all the other duties PGA Professionals perform in a season. Professionals in New England play for hundreds of thousands of dollars in purses each year, spread across more than 150 tournaments, but what if you could win more than the Section Championship and New England Open purses combined, all in one swing? Enter John Paesani, PGA of the Bay Club, who recently accomplished that feat – with a twist.
Paesani is a veteran of the golf profession, having spent the entirety of his career in the northeast, split between the Connecticut and New England Sections over his 33 year stretch as a PGA Member. Affectionately known as Pi, with the mathematical symbol emblazoned on every golf ball he strikes, his golf career experience can appear infinite. Known as an exceptional player throughout his career, Paesani has played in five Professional majors in addition to many PGA Professional Championships across all ages and classifications, with numerous wins to his credit. His playing resume is one of consistency and longevity, and his current A-8 classification mixed with his age puts him in an exclusive group of PGA Professionals who can play all three championships in their Section (Senior, Assistant & Section Championships). This is where Paesani’s 2018 hole-in-one story begins.