July 16, 2009
Wichita junior golfer A.J. Gebert will compete July 30 through Aug. 2 in the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships at PGA National Resort and Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Gebert will compete in the boys 16-18 division.
Hundreds of junior golfers ages 10 to 18 will travel from throughout the world to play in the annual tournament July 25 through Aug. 2. Golfers ages 10 to 15 will play July 25 through 27 in three age divisions each for boys and girls: 10-11, 12-13 and 14-15. The older golfers, ages 16 to 18, will have their turn July 30 through Aug. 2.
The Optimist prides itself as an international event each year, with players representing more than 35 states, five Canadian provinces and 30 nations. Quite a few recognizable names are past champions of the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships, including Beth Bauer, Jonathan Byrd, Bubba Dickerson, Brittany Lincicome, Jeff Overton, Stacy Prammanasudh and Jennifer Rosales. A number of other well-known professional golfers have participated in Optimist-sponsored championships such as Ernie Els, Nancy Lopez, Davis Love III, Michelle McGann, Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods.
The junior golfers’ progress can be tracked online at www.optimist.org/golf. Scores, photos, news stories and tee times will be updated daily throughout the tournament.
Optimist International is one of the world’s largest service club organizations with more than 110,000 adult and youth members in 3,600 clubs worldwide. Carrying the motto “Bringing Out the Best in Kids,” Optimists conduct positive service projects that reach more than 6 million young people each year. The Optimist Junior Golf program is one of the organization’s most prominent projects.