A PA’s Story by Randy Cooray

To fit a full round of golf is a challenge in itself. Whether you are a single rapscallion hacking away at your nearby track, or a typical working professional, five hours plus away from your daily duties can be a challenge.

However, golf of course is known as an activity that sees a lot of traction to those who are enjoying the fruits of retirement, which is widely evident at KaneffGolf. 

According to statisticbrain.com, over 60% of the 29,000,000 people who play in the U.S. are over the age of 50. As golf communities are staples to communities like Florida, the Carolinas, Arizona, etc., many people around these parts are using their nearby golf course as a way to get themselves back into the game, and back to a social culture.

“When I got to university (early 1970s), golf became very interesting, because I had a group of friends who would go to a couple of classes in the morning, and then we would skip away to play in the afternoon,” says John Chodorowicz, who spent 35 years as a teacher throughout Brampton and Mississauga; retiring in 2010. “I can remember that for $90 I was able to play at five different courses, five days a week. I enjoyed it, because it was just fun to get out.” 

From university to teacher’s college, and then out in the working-world, Chodorowicz did find himself away from the game as the day-to-day responsibilities of full-time teacher, husband and father began. He claimed that his yearly average of 30 rounds per season in university dropped to less than five when his first daughter was born in 1982. 

“Golf went on the backburner when I got married in 1981, and it of course was very hard when the kids started to come, because I would plan my time with the family. Now that the kids are older (three daughters), I can play without any guilt,” Chodorowicz said jokingly. 

Golf came back to his life just as retirement from the teaching world loomed. Chodorowicz learned of a program from Royal Ontario GC where volunteers were able to play for free while accumulating hours doing various tasks. Chodorowicz starts his weekly shift at the crack of dawn (that being as early as 5:30am), and would perform such duties as greeter, parking golf carts at the front of the pro shop, and as a marshal. As you may think getting up as early as 4:30am (or earlier) is way too early just to volunteer, Chodorowicz says it fits his schedule quite nicely.

“My wife doesn’t like it too much when I wake her up,” Chodorowicz said candidly. “I don’t really think of myself as a martyr, but I love the mornings and I have taken my camera out and got some great early morning shots of the course; and that is all I want from this gig. I don’t want to be paid, I just want to have a chance to play.”

In the end, Chodorowicz is a supporter of the volunteer program at KaneffGolf, and does recommend it to those who may be interested in coming out next year.

“To be quite honest, it’s fun!” he said. “That’s the one thing I missed being retired. I missed being with people I used to work with, and this kind of fulfils that. I like to work with people who are good people, and that is really the best part. The fact it is at a golf course is a great combination of doing something you like with people who you like.”

Email john@kaneffgolf.com  If you are interested in being a volunteer for the 2017 season.