About Optimist Junior Golf

The Optimist Junior Golf Program is an exciting and unique junior golf program for ages 10-18. More than 5,000 boys and girls throughout the United States and Canada and in several foreign countries compete in official Optimist qualifying tournaments. The best of these golfers, along with international golfers from around the globe, advance to the annual Optimist International Junior Golf Championships. Commonly referred to as simply the Optimist, the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships is one of the largest and most prestigious junior golf events in the world. In addition to top-level tournament golf, participants have the opportunity to meet new friends and to have a great deal of fun. Each year, more than 650 junior golfers from 30 countries participate in the Optimist.


 
PGA National Resort & Spa, located in Palm Beach Gardens, Palm Beach County, Florida, is the home of the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships. Combined with a dedication to junior golf that few golf destinations can match, PGA National is the perfect location for the Optimist. Besides being located next to the international headquarters of the PGA of America, the resort’s championship golf courses have hosted the PGA Championships, the PGA Seniors’ Championships, the Ryder Cup, the Grand Slam of Golf, the World Big Tour Match, the PGA Club Professional Championship and the PGA Junior Championship, and the resort is now the home course of the PGA TOUR’s Honda Classic. In addition, Palm Beach County is rated as having more golf courses than any county in the United States.

The Optimist International Tournament of Champions is an invitational junior golf championship for previous participants of Optimist Junior Golf events and other top junior golfers. The inaugural Tournament of Champions took place in Miami, Florida, in December 2005 on the Blue Monster course at Doral Golf Resort & Spa, home the PGA Tour's Ford Championship. The Tournament of Champions is for male and female junior golfers ages 14-18. The Tournament of Champions moved to the Champion course at PGA National for the 2006, 2007 and 2008 events. In 2009, the tournament moved to Orange County National Golf Center & Lodge in Winter Garden, Florida. The 2010 tournament will take place on Disney's Palm Golf Course at Walt Disney World, Florida.

Former champions of the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships include Beth Bauer, Jonathan Byrd, Bubba Dickerson, Brittany Lincicome, Jeff Overton, Stacy Prammanasudh and Jennifer Rosales among others. Several other well-known professional golfers have participated in Optimist-sponsored championships as well, including Amy Alcott, Notah Begay III, Brandie Burton, John Daly, Ernie Els, Justin Leonard, Davis Love III, Billy Mayfair, Michelle McGann, Phil Mickelson, Nancy Lopez, Lorena Ochoa, Corey Pavin, Nick Price, Chris Riley, Craig Stadler, Paul Stankowski, David Toms and Tiger Woods.


Mission Statement of the Optimist Junior Golf Program
The Optimist Junior Golf Program’s mission is to build positive values in young people through participation in Optimist District and international junior golf events.

Vision Statement of the Optimist Junior Golf Program
Optimist Junior Golf will be recognized as one of the largest and most prestigious junior golf programs in the world.

Objectives of the Optimist Junior Golf Program
  • To promote the sport of golf among young people.
  • To provide an opportunity for junior golfers to participate in Optimist Club, District and International Tournaments.
  • To share the philosophies of Optimism with the junior golf community.




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