For a traveling golf group celebrating a historic anniversary this fall, what better place than “The Granddaddy” to cap its 60th consecutive year of making Myrtle Beach their preferred destination?
That’s why members of the U-All Golf Club, an independent golf club based in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, chose the area’s oldest and most historic golf club (Pine Lakes Country Club, opened in 1927) as the venue this fall for the final round of the 2018 installment of their annual pilgrimage.
“I’ve been coming since 1984, for 34 years. This trip originated in 1958 with a group of local businessmen, restaurateurs and bar owners that always hung together and played local golf in the Philadelphia area,” said Mike Keeley, president of the U-All Golf Club. “At that time, Myrtle Beach was just starting to blossom a little bit, and they felt a trip away to the south in good weather would be a good thing for them. That’s really how it started, and then it just progressed year, by year, by year.”
While U-All’s original members came from areas in and around Philadelphia, the passage of time and growing popularity of this trip has seen its participant base extend to Florida, Virginia, Nebraska and even Wisconsin.
Keeley points to the special bonds of friendship that have been formed with each passing year as part of what has made this trip a “must” for its continuing participants. “There are a lot of memories, and I guess it’s the people, really,” said Keeley. “To pinpoint just one thing is very difficult, but it’s the people who return each year as friends, as fellow golfers, as gentlemen who really are the backbone of the group, and the reason I’m been doing what I’m doing with the group.”
As to why they’ve chosen Myrtle Beach as the regular gathering point, Keeley says it’s simple. “We’re all golf lovers. We’re a lot of ex-athletes who are still somewhat competitive, even though we’re up there in years, but I think people love the area,” he said. “I mean, I come here maybe three times a year, with my family, and then with other short trips. But, I think it’s the Myrtle Beach area and the laid-back appeal. It’s a great place to come. The price is always right in the area, and we’ve always had a good time together.”