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Interview With Paul Leahy Director of Golf Tan-Tar-A Resort Golf Club

 

Interview With Paul Leahy Director of Golf Tan-Tar-A Resort Golf Club

A Light Hearted Golf Q & A Interview

By Brian Weis


Below is an interview with Paul Leahy , the Director of Golf at Tan-Tar-A Resort Golf Club. The following are a few traditional and non traditional golf centric questions that I love to ask influential people in the golf industry.

Can you provide our readers a brief biography?
I have been playing golf since a my father started my brother and I probably at about age 5. I worked at Beaver Hills Country Club in Cedar Falls, IA through high school. I attended Ferris State University and Graduated through the first of it's kind Professional Golf Management program. I did internships in Carroll. IA, Atalanta, GA and Osage Beach, MO through school. After Graduation I took at job with Marriott at the Tan-Tar-A Resort in Osage Beach, MO. I obtained my PGA Membership in 1991 and have been at Tan-Tar-A for 28 years with the past 16 as Director of Golf. I have been on the Gateway PGA Board of Directors for 10 years, President of the Lake of the Ozarks Golf Council for 15 years and co-director of the Lake of the Ozarks Junior Golf association for 20 years. I have been awarded the Gateway PGA Bill Strausbaugh Award, Junior Golf Leader award and Resort Merchandiser of the year award.

When did you start golfing and who introduced you to the game?
My father, Bob Leahy, introduced me to the game at a very young age probably 5 or so. My family and I would travel with my father to amateur tournaments in Iowa on the weekends and watch him compete. He was a three time Iowa Amateur Champion and has been elected into the Iowa Golf Hall of Fame. Just watching my Dad play and compete taught me how to conduct myself on the course and watching the other players and how they respected my Dad's game and the person that he was , was a great motivator to love the game of golf. He never pushed golf on us but we loved playing the game and being around the course it was where my brother and I spent our summers. I remember when I was pretty young I wasn't having a particularly good day on the course and my dad said you have to concentrate. My dad tells the story that I got a little upset and spouted off how can I concentrate when I don't even know what it means. I'm sure he wasn't laughing at the time but as time wore on we always got a laugh out of the memory of me saying it and I guess I must have figured it out at some point.

What is your current home course?
I work at the Tan-Tar-A Resort Golf Club in Osage Beach, which has the Oaks an 18 hole course and Hidden Lakes a 9 Hole Course.

To date, what is your proudest golf accomplishment?
Probably obtaining my Quarter Century award from the PGA of America for being an active PGA Member for 25 years. Spending 25 years in a profession says a lot for the golf business and golf professionals. Equal to that is the 28 years I have spent at the Tan-Tar-A resort in various positions. I have gone through 3 resort ownership changes and it is rare in our business to spend your entire career at one facility.

What is your biggest golf pet peeve on or off the course?
Golfers who pull up to the green on the cart path and proceed to park the cart with two wheels on the grass and two on the cart path. Not sure what the purpose is for this.

What is your favorite club in your bag and why?
I would say my wedges. I do not overpower the golf course with the Driver so I need to hit my wedges close to score so I practice those shots a lot and enjoy being able to hit my wedges closer than the other players!!

What is your favorite golf destination?
I have been to several over the last few years and if I had to choose one that I have been to, besides the golf destination that is the Lake of the Ozarks Golf Trail, I would say Kohler, WI. A friend of mine Jim Richerson is the General Manager there and several of us from the Lake have played there. The courses are all excellent and the service is top notch, so if you haven't been there I would check it out. Plus you get to play Whistling Straits so you can say you played on a course that hosted the PGA Championship.

What course is on your bucket list that you have not played yet?
Augusta National. I been there to watch the tournament but to actually play it would be a dream come true. Such history there and so much beauty.

If you woke up tomorrow and could play one course you played before, where would you play?
Crystal Downs in Michigan, I played it in college but did not understand the history of it and it's place on the top golf courses in America list. I would enjoy it and savor the experience this time a lot more than I did when I was 19.

If you could change one aspect, rule or thing about golf, what would it be and why?
Make golf easier for the masses, weather that is equipment, rules courses just make it easier. The tour can play anyway they like but for the masses the more enjoyable we can make it the more people will play. The game is hard enough without enforcing rules and equipment standards, ie anchored putting, that turn the average person or beginning golfer off to the sport.

Dream foursome (living)?
My Son Michael
My Brother John
Tiger Woods

Dream foursome (living or dead)?
My father Bob
Sam Sneed
Ben Hogan

Favorite 19th hole drink?
Bud Light

18 Rapid Fire, Off The Cuff Questions

1) Hitting Long Drive OR Sinking Long Putt?
Long Putt, if you have ever scene me drive no one would believe I hit a long drive

2) Having Round of Life OR Hole in One?
Round of my life, I've had 2 holes in One but I'm still waiting on the round of my life

3) Golfing at the crack of dawn OR twilight?
Crack of dawn walking with a caddy

4) Hit a power fade OR power draw?
Power draw I need all the distance I can get

5) Beverage cart OR halfway house?
Both you can never had too many beverages on a beautiful day on the course

6) Bathroom OR bushes?
Bathroom I have standards lol

7) Hot dog OR wrap?
Hot Dog!! Wraps really

8) Around the green, being in sand OR thick rough?
Sand never know what your going to get in the rough

9) Walking OR riding?
Love to walk with a caddy by carts or a must most days.

10) Do you carry traditional 3 iron OR hybrid?
Hybrid I'm about ready to loose the 4 iron too

11) Do you prefer long par 3 OR long par 5?
Neither the shorter the better lol My Dad taught me though as long as you have a club to get there in regulation your all right. I learned to hit a lot of fairway woods close from 200

12) Pants OR Shorts?
Pants I'm a traditionalist

13) Palmer OR Nicklaus?
Nicklaus I got to watch him more in his prime, but I have to be honest growing up in the 70's Johnny Miller was the man!

14) Beatles OR Elvis?
Beatles no question

15) Play for fun OR play for money?
Money, how can you play and not have something on the line

16) Bump and run OR flop shot?
Love the flop shot it's so much fun to hit and pull off

17) Lay up OR gamble?
I love to gamble but with power or lack there of I lay up more than going for it

18) 18 holes OR 36?
18 I'm getting to old for 36 - 27 is a better option for me


 

Revised: 04/16/2018 - Article Viewed 606 Times - View Golf Course Profile


Written By: Brian Weis

Brian Weis Brian Weis is the Publisher of GolfTrips.com, a network of golf travel and directory sites including GolfWisconsin.com, GolfMichigan.com, ArizonaGolfer.com, GolfAlabama.com, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.

All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched GolfWisconsin.com. In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and GolfTrips.com was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like GolfTrips.com, GolfGuide.com and GolfPackages.com. It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.

On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.


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