One man’s dream is really all golfers dream.
I have never met Patrick Koenig. And yet through his golf photography and his recent RGV Tour where he quit his job to spend a year golfing across the United States, I feel like we’re kindred spirits.
Imagine leaving your job to take a year to play golf every day, travel the country, meet new people, and all the while chronicling your adventures. Oh, and through a dynamic partnership with the First Tee of Greater Seattle, he had also been raising money (he donated a cheque for $20,000…double his original goal). Simply the stuff of legends.
I, like thousands of others, follow Patrick on social media. Josh, from Golf Is Mental, interviewed Patrick in his Casual 9 series so that gave me a little more insight to Patrick’s excellent photography and his unique look at the golf world.
But the RGV Tour had me enthralled. And hearing my friend on Twitter, Jimmy from South Carolina (@TgrGolfTraveler) teed it up with him, I was hooked.
At the essence is that Patrick could move on the primal urges of golfers all over the world. This quote really captures it, “The time is now for me to live my dream. The time is not for me to play golf every day”. Simple and to the point.
Taking a year to play golf (Patrick played over 400 rounds in the RGV Tour in 2018). He also took over 40,000 pictures (here’s a snapshot of the best 50).
In addition to the concept itself are important design elements Patrick built in – the 26-foot RV, painted up with the RGV logo; photography (of course); a blog and a podcast to engage with others who were in some small way along for the ride; a charitable component which is more than just noble, it creates expanded purpose; and his willingness to allow others to join in, play and share in the experience. He’s a goddamn genius.
Drawing from his experience, I’ll share with you my own modest dream. Mapping a route across Canada to move east to west and hit all provinces and play golf from May to November is going to be my homework now, inspired by Patrick’s epic adventure. Barring a lottery win or my wife looking to trade up, it’s not likely I’ll be ever able to move on this dream. And that’s ok. Because dreams are powerful and on frigid winter days here in Canada, they can get avid golfers through until the warmth of the spring hits and we’re able to tee it up again.
I suppose in some small way, my own Canadian course bucket list is a version of this dream. That is a decent compromise, really. My bucket list was inspired by my late cousin who took a summer off to play golf every day. He’d call me from places like Kohler (WI), Bandon (OR) and We-Ko-Pa (AZ)…always sounding like a kid on Christmas. He pleaded with me to come join him for a few rounds. A young daughter and an inability at the time to see how special this would have been, I politely declined. And what resulted was my own reflections about how cool it would be to play Canada’s top public courses. Hearing Patrick’s story stirred up all those emotions and has me more excited than ever to get at my own list and knock more courses off it.
Patrick, if you read this, drop me a DM. I have one last 36 A Day toque which I’d like to send your way. The experience of this Canadian golfer is that golf travelers should always have a toque in the bag. Cold weather on the golf course is a relative term but playing in 47 states over a calendar year may require one to be ready for cold weather. Also, it’s a small token of thanks. The dream of many public golfers has been scaled and framed so perfectly, and now chronicled. I, for one, will be quick to buy any book you put out around this experience. It will serve to stoke the fire of my own Canadian golfing adventures. And if you’re ever in the Toronto area and are looking for a playing partner, I’m your guy.
Follow Patrick on Twitter to learn more about his adventures, photography, any releases from this trip and if there will be a sequel trip, RGV 2.0 perhaps?
Mildly addicted to the game of golf. Fiercely loyal. A planner, a dreamer, reflective and a proud and passionate Canadian. A father. A fiancé. A tree planter. A Trent graduate. A dog owner. Falling in love with my putter after many failed relationships. A scratch golfer stuck in a 10 handicap body. Love, love, love golf value. Fade on a good day. One ace (and seeking a second). A golf writer/blogger focused on public golf in Canada. Chipping away at my own Bucket List of Canadian golf courses.