Trick shots salvation for this Addison professional golfer
Yeah, that Jordan Spieth guy is a pretty good golfer.
And so is Jason Day and Adam Scott and, on the women's side, Lydia Ko.
You've got to respect what they do, maybe even admire it, taming the world's greatest golf courses and, with a few exceptions, showing them who's boss.
Peter Longo isn't exactly in their league. Yes, he's a PGA professional, but you usually don't see him putting next to Bubba Watson at Augusta National.
On the other hand, you don't often see guys like Bubba and Jordan trying to whack a Titleist with a really, really long driver. Or a really, really short one. Or one that flips around like a limp piece of spaghetti.
"I got into trick shots by failing at everything else I ever tried in golf," Longo said. "I went broke on the PGA tour about 30 years ago and I got into trick shots kind of by accident."
While other golfers are chasing big trophies and green jackets, Longo is providing a different kind of links-related entertainment.
Known as "The King of Clubs," Longo has been putting on displays of his trick-shot artistry since 1980. During that time, he says, he's conducted more than 2,900 exhibitions of his penchant for driving golf balls while sitting, with double-headed clubs that allow him to strike two balls at once, and even off rotating tees -- all while maintaining a steady patter with his audience.
These days, Longo spends his summers at Addison Park District's Links and Tees Golf Facility on Lake Street, and that's where he was Saturday afternoon, showing off his skills as part of the facility's summer Golfer Appreciation Day.
In addition to watching Longo's demonstrations (did he really just do that?), golf fans were able to participate in several free clinics -- learning about custom club fitting, reading greens, swing planes and bunker play -- and to check out the facility's lighted driving range, 9-hole walking course, 9-hole foot course (where you kick soccer-style balls into large holes), 18-hole adventure miniature golf course and its indoor golf dome.
"It's a great way to kick the summer off," facility manager Charles Sims said, "and to have fun."