There’s A Lot Of Golf On British Columbia’s Plate

 

BC Golf's Matthew Steinbach Holds Prototype Golf License Plate

BC Golf’s Matthew Steinbach Holds Prototype Golf License Plate – Image Courtesy BC Golf

by Kris Jonasson

The Columbia Valley, Kootenays (East and West), South Okanagan, Okanagan, Shuswap, Kamloops, Lower Mainland, Whistler and Vancouver Island have a lot in common. World class golf, outstanding scenery and great accommodations make British Columbia a great golf destination in North America.

The International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) named British Columbia the top undiscovered golf destination in the world (2004) and then in 2007 named BC the top golf destination in North America. Regrettably, the economic downturn in 2008 resulted in tighter operating margins and the resulting cutbacks in marketing dollars would not allow British Columbia to fully capitalize on these prestigious designations.

It is well understood that the most effective method of advertising is personal endorsements and effective “word of mouth” campaigns. The trick is to start a conversation.

Beginning in the fall of of 2016, golfers in BC will have an easy method to start that conversation and the opportunity to extoll the virtues of golf in their region. This will be done by attaching a golf-themed license plate to their vehicle. This simple addition identifies the owner as a golfer, starting the conversation; Where do you play and why?

Golfers travel, so the plates will become rolling billboards. Golf facilities can support the program by providing custom made plate protectors. These custom protectors can identify the facility and invite a visit as a call to action.

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Children and grandchildren of golfers will have an easy choice for a gift as the plate will be well received at Christmas, birthdays or other celebrations. British Columbia Golf, in partnership with the Allied Golf Association, has been working with government and ICBC for many years to launch this type of affinity plate program. The program will be similar to what is currently in place for “veteran plates” and which was in place for the Olympics.

The enabling legislation will be introduced late this spring or early in the fall sitting of the legislature. ICBC will have the logistics of plate distribution and registration in the fall of 2016.

Government has been assured any revenue stream that comes from this program will be equally split in funding programs to gets kids physically active through golf and providing marketing funds promoting British Columbia as a golf destination.

There is no approved design for a plate but the accompanying pictures show Matthew Steinbach, Manager, Golf Participation holding a prototype design of both the plate and plate protector. Stay tuned for updates on this exciting initiative.

BC Golf Professionals In Full Preparations For Another Season Ahead

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By Donald Miyazaki, Executive Director, PGA of British Columbia

Throughout British Columbia, 2015 proved to be one of the driest, busiest, and most successful golf seasons in recent years.

The buzz around golf remained high throughout the year, in part to notable events in the area such as the CP Women’s Open at The Vancouver Golf Club and the proximity of the US Open at Chambers Bay. As well, record-shattering dry weather kept interest levels high which added to a lively season for PGA of BC Golf Professional.

These 650 highly skilled men and women who make up Club Professionals at over 200 facilities throughout the province are once again preparing for an exciting season ahead. Many golf facilities are already opened or are planning to open ahead of schedule and courses have been reporting some of the best spring conditions in recent years.

Individual responsibilities of PGA of BC Golf Professional may differ in a variety of different forms. Instructors, Managers, Retailers, Players, and junior golf promoters are just some attributes, but all share the same common goal of advancing the game in our province.

The 2016 campaign kicked off with an announcement of the PGA of BC Top 100, which highlighted some of the Province’s most dedicated Golf Professionals who have continued to further their involvement and education through a wide range of professional development platforms.

As a cornerstone of the Association’s grows the game portfolio, the PGA of BC is once again proud to continue the successful and popular Canucks Junior Golf Week thanks to a continued partnership with the Vancouver Canucks. This year’s program will take place July 4-11 where an anticipated 40 facilities throughout BC that will host elementary camps for new and beginner golfers. Throughout the first two years of the program, over 1,100 kids have taken advantage of the program and we are excited to see this number continue to rise.

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If you are interested in seeing some of the world’s best golfers, June will boost some great calibre professional golf events hosted throughout BC and the Pacific Northwest. The Mackenzie Tour (PGA TOUR Canada) has recently announced a new event, the GolfBC Championship hosted at Gallagher’s Canyon G&CC, June 6-12. During that same week, the LPGA Tour will see its first Major in Pacific Northwest, the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship at Sahalee Country Club just East of Seattle. And finally, The PGA of Canada will host our National Championship, the PGA Championship of Canada featuring 64 of the Top Golf Professionals in the country competing in a unique Match Play setting at the prestigious Victoria Golf Club from June 12-16.

While providing strong leadership in the community through charity events and volunteerism, dedicated PGA Golf Professional will once again come together and join forces with the ALS Society of BC in the annual Golfathon for ALS. Throughout the twelve years of partnership, Golf Professionals and their supporters have lent their muscles to whose living with ALS, raising over $1.2 Million in the process to benefit patience services at the ALS Society of BC.

Regardless of the reasons to see a golf professional, they are highly regarded as experts in all aspects of the game. For this, PGA of BC members are often referred to as the most trusted source in golf. We hope you find time to introduce yourself to one of our members at some point throughout the upcoming golf season. To find a PGA of BC Golf Professional nearest you, please visit the Find a Pro feature located on our website, www.pgabc.org.