NAPLES — Well, the Masters is here. I'm going to save my Masters babble for post-tournament discussion. However, I will say this now: I think this event has a pre-tournament feeling like something big is going to happen.
Each winter season about this time when it begins to wind down, and summer is right around the corner, I tend to look back and think about another season coming to an end. This year it has seemed to have been particularly active on the Naples golf front.
I like to remind the public player, as well as the private member, to reach out. Reach out to your PGA professional, his assistants, your greens superintendent, your general manager and his or her food and beverage staff. Thank them for the countless hours and hard work they put in this past season.
Trust me, each day in this business those folks work their tails off at each facility to make your golf experience the best they possibly can. Your own PGA professional is the gatekeeper at your facility watching over your golf and wearing many, many hats at the same time. It's not nearly as easy as he or she may make it look from day to day.
I have been in the business just over three decades and can count on one hand the number of folks who have stopped by through the years to say a simple, but heartfelt thank you. I will say this: each one was special and remains meaningful to me.
Allow me to give you a small nudge. Stop by to each of the folks I named above if you enjoyed your golf this past season here in paradise, extend your hand and give those great folks at your club a "well done." They deserve it.
To all my fellow PGA members and their facility's entire staff, thank you for all you do for this great game, and thank you for allowing me to be a small part of Southwest Florida golf. You all do great things here.
Keep your eyes peeled this week. This Masters may go down in the history books as a very special major. I just have a funny feeling.
Tom Patri gives lessons at the Quarry on Immokalee Road, and is at Friar's Head in New York from May-December. Patri is a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher. Visit Patri's website at www.tompatri.com or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.