July 18: CLC instructor to appear on new ABC-TV mini golf series 'Holey Moley'
Mick Cullen, a College of Lake County instructor of human services and a world record holder in miniature golf, is a contestant on the July 18 installment of "Holey Moley," a new competition series on ABC-TV that showcases mini-golf lovers from around the country as they compete through an epic obstacle golf course for a $25,000 prize.
Cullen, 42, a Lindenhurst resident and lifelong mini golf enthusiast, said he was "really excited" to receive a phone call in March from the show's production company, asking him to come to Los Angeles in April for a week of filming. He said he first learned of the casting call last October from friend. Rather than appear in person, Cullen and the other prospects submitted online applications and videos of their mini golf skills. The next steps, during the winter months, were phone and Skype interviews with show producers as well as a background check.
Cullen mentioned in the interviews his world record that he achieved in 2011, for the largest number of rounds of mini golf played in 24 hours. He played 5,040 holes (280 18-hole rounds) at an indoor mini golf facility in Waukegan. His feat raised $2,500 for Parkinson's disease research, in memory of his wife's late grandfather who experienced the disorder. (Cullen's record, which is recognized by www.recordsetter.com, surpasses a Guinness record that is disputed within the mini golf community because the latter golfer is alleged not to have kept score.)
To prepare for the April filming, Cullen said he practiced for an hour each day for a month at a Waukegan course as well as the Libertyville Sports Complex. For the taping, Cullen flew to California with his mother, Dianne, 62, who is also a contestant on the show and will appear in the July 25 installment. She will not compete with Mick, who put in a good word for her when asked by show producers to recommend other contestants. Dianne also had to complete the application and interview process.
Cullen, who has played on 250 mini golf courses in 31 states, said his love for the sport goes back to childhood growing up in Wildwood and Grayslake. "My parents took me and my brother to a 36-hole course in Beach Park, and the admission was only four dollars for a family of four at the time," he said. "It was inexpensive family entertainment." Later, Cullen founded in 1997 the MC Mini Masters, an annual June weekend tournament involving dozens of players
competing on a half-dozen courses in Lake and Kenosha Counties.
Mini golf's appeal, he said, is the combination of skill, luck and fun for all ages, sizes and abilities, regardless of gender. "You don't have to be particularly large or a superior athlete to play, but having some athletic skill helps," he said. "Age and gender don't factor as much. My five-year-old son can beat me on a hole. You can be as competitive or non-competitive as you want to be."
The competition of "Holey Moley" involves 10 episodes, each featuring 12 contestants, with the top finisher each week receiving a $25,000 prize. Cullen, along with the other contestants, promised the network that he would not divulge how he did in the competition prior to the July 18 air date.
For more information on "Holey Moley," visit https://abc.go.com/shows/holey-moley.
Fall CLC classes begin Aug. 19. For information about courses and how to apply and enroll, visit www.clcillinois.edu/fall.
About College of Lake County:
College of Lake County is an innovative community college in Lake County, Ill. that transforms lives with its variety of accessible, quality education options. Offered at three campuses in Grayslake, Vernon Hills and Waukegan or online, College of Lake County provides affordable options in a state-of-the-art setting close to home. A large student network, with small class sizes,provides advantages to our students on a career-related program or a path toward a transfer degree. We're proud to serve the diverse needs of our community and student body. Connect to your future today at College of Lake County. For more information, visit www.clcillinois.edu.