OK, time to get back on track. “The Big Timer” is hoping for a bounce back at his next stop as he takes on the par-4 16th hole at Crown Park Golf Club. Let’s see if Charlie can card a red number on this challenging dogleg hole!
Cancer knocked me down, but not out. Now, I’m cancer free. The recovery? It’s been tough. I’ll need patience, a lot of humor …
(Somebody clapped. I heard him!)
… And support from friends and family. Over the last two years, I haven’t played much golf, but there’s no better place to get back in the game than on 66 courses in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. We’re keeping score, but just teeing it up means I’ve already won!
(That’s why they call me “The BIIIIIIIIIIG TIMER!”)
Join me on my journey to break par!
Man, they carved out a beauty through this stretch of pine forest! We’ve got a dogleg left here with a pretty good-sized pond guarding the inside of it and some area to the right to land your tee shot. Just don’t go too long down that side, because if the trees don’t get you, that first bunker will. Let’s see what we got!
So this is Crown Park Golf Club. We’re in Longs, South Carolina, which is a little northwest of Myrtle Beach. For me, this is sort of nostalgic. I’ve actually never played this golf course. Hey, I haven’t been able to play all of them over the years. It’s my first time here and I absolutely love it. It takes me down memory lane a little bit. I grew up a couple of hours from here in South Carolina. We would play high school golf, back when you could play 18 holes two days a week, and we’d tee off at one o’clock, which was so cool.
So we would get in the team van and we would drive across the state and there’d be farmland, forest, swamps, black water, pine, and all of a sudden, you’d come to a golf course like this. It’s just absolutely beautiful. No houses, no out-of-bounds in play here, a lot of wildlife, I love it. Deer, they got some gator. They’ve even got some mean wild turkey here. We got a guy on our crew, Jim. For some reason, he’s terrified of wild turkey. I’ve never heard of anybody terrified of wild turkey, but Jim is. Anyway, beautiful place.
So this is the 16th hole, not a very long par four. Got some water left, bunker right. Let’s put it where they mow the grass. That’ll be just fine. Man, this is a beautiful place, whole state. Love it. So cool growing up here. Like playing golf in a state park.
Well, I’m just inside the fairway here, but there’s a few cool things I want to point out. Here in Myrtle Beach, a lot of golf courses, they’ll use flag sticks to mark the edges of the penalty areas. That way if it’s the first time seeing the golf course, you got a pretty good idea, hey, I don’t want to go over there. Another thing that’s really cool, they’ll use these striped poles in the middle of the fairway. In this case, there’s a hundred yard pole and 150 yard pole. They offer really good targets, a good way to get yourself around the golf course when you’re seeing it for the first time.
All right. 130 yards into the wind, that feels like a little nine iron. Well, I got a problem there. In this part of the world, golf is a two-dimensional game. You see, you got to get your towards right and your furs right. The towards, making sure you’re going towards the right way, and the furs are making sure you go the right distance. So my fur was just on right there. The towards was a little off. Y’all think about that for a while. Furs and towards.
I was wrong. You see, I thought I had my furs right and my towards wrong. They were actually both wrong. That’s why I got this 40 footer. Not much break here. It’s just going to be a little slow. Come on. Little bit of work here. There we go. Get all the way to the bottom. Another pretty ugly par, but it’s at a pretty place!
From Crown Park to the Myrtle Beach home of “The King” – that’s right, we’re off to Myrtle Beach National to take on the first of three Arnold Palmer’s signature tracks!