By Josh Golden SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – During the challenging times of the COVID-19 lockdown, many Central New Yorkers were left with not much to do. Many people turned to golf to help pass the time and get an excuse to spend some time outside, and a lot of people have stuck with it.
Many local golf courses have been very busy due to the newfound popularity of the game. According to Robbie Abraham, assistant pro at Lyndon Golf Course in Fayetteville, “With everyone being locked down inside, they just got sick of being inside so they wanted to come out and enjoy the fresh air and try something new for themselves.” Abraham also added that “golf is perfect for that,” which is why so many people started playing and have stuck with it.
Even with the lockdown being over, the growth of the game still continues, with new players coming to local courses every day. Abraham says that “now that things have gotten better, business has gone up since then.” People have gotten their taste of the game and have stuck with it.
In fact, many of the people who have started playing golf might not be the crowd you’d expect. Despite golf’s stigma of being an “old person sport,” the game attracted a much younger audience during the pandemic who have been able to stick with it. According to lifetime golfer and assistant pro at Drumlins Country Club Anthony Saraceno, “since we’ve gotten to this point, it’s definitely become a lot more of a younger person thing.” Saraceno says this has helped revolutionize the game both at the professional and recreational level, even urging new players to watch the PGA Tour to see the energy players like Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka show in events such as last month’s Ryder Cup.
The game has grown rapidly here in Central New York, but it’ll have to take a pause soon. Courses will be closing once snow starts to fall, which Saraceno and Abraham bot say usually comes around early to mid November.