Spots fill in nine minutes for CSRA golf summer camp


AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Summer camps took a break in 2020 but now many are back in full swing. Especially those camps on the links.

“Golf is just a good sport. I like it a lot,” said camper Baxter Cates.

The Burke County Sheriff’s Office is teaming up with Burke County schools and First Tee Augusta to host a golf camp.

“It’s showing how important partnerships are and how important it is to reach our kids by giving them opportunities that may not otherwise been afforded,” said Sheriff Alfonzo Williams.

First Tee Program Director Lashunda Hall explained, “Our goal is to try to expose any and all individuals to the game of golf.”

Williams says his office recruited 60 kids in his county for the camp sessions in addition to the other campers. Spots in both sessions of the two-week camp filled up in nine minutes!

“In conjunction with the application process was the Burke County school system and some of their educators who identified stunts who would embrace the opportunity,” said Williams.

“You get to make lots of good friends here like Baxter said. I like playing golf at the driving range,” said camper Samuel Lever.

The first session of the free, June golf camp at First Tee capped off Friday with a graduation.

“A lot of times in life, it’s similar to hitting a golf ball, where you have one opportunity to hit a shot or to make a decision and you have to live with every decision or the consequences that come with that shot. The same as golf, once you hit the ball you have to hit where it lies,” said Hall.

Williams added, “Teamwork and honesty and integrity and respect for one another. And giving them an opportunity to learn or enhance those skills they already have while learning the game of golf so, it’s a unique and remarkable opportunity.”

Overall, 50 campers improved their swings during the first session and more are on the horizon.

Who’s better out of the two of you?

“I am,” said Cates.

Lever responded, “No, we’re tied, we’re tied.”

“No that’s me all the way,” said Cates.

Who can hit the ball further?

“Me,” said Cates.

Lever said, “He can hit it a bit further.”

“No, a lot further,” added Cates.

The second session of the golf camp at First Tee starts next week and enrollment is closed. Sheriff Williams hopes to continue to partner with First Tee and Burke County schools to hold more.

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