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May 19, 2011
ARNOLD PALMER AND JIM NANTZ RAISE FUNDS FOR SPECIAL OLYMPICS MARYLAND
BALTIMORE, MD – Golf legend Arnold Palmer and esteemed broadcaster Jim Nantz team up May 25 for the inaugural "The 19th Hole" to raise funds for Special Olympics Maryland.
Special Olympics Maryland is proud to tee up this special salute to the sport of golf and all that it contributes to the community and non-profits of every type and size.
Palmer and Nantz will engage in an intimate chat and presentation for what promises to be a special evening filled with stories, memories and golf history.
A silent auction will also be held featuring a vast collection of historic golf and sports memorabilia, with all proceeds benefiting Special Olympics Maryland.
Special Olympics Maryland (SOMD) is a year-round sports organization dedicated to providing training and competition opportunities to Maryland’s children and adults with intellectual disabilities by offering 28 different sports during four separate sports seasons. SOMD is positively affecting thousands upon thousands of athletes, encouraging them to reach their full potential by focusing on what they CAN do and not what society has long taught that they CAN’T achieve.
Posted by scurry at 01:49 PM
May 07, 2011
ARNOLD PALMER STATEMENT ABOUT THE PASSING OF SEVE BALLESTEROS
"Seve was a great guy and an outstanding competitor. I considered him to be a good friend of mine. His dynamic talent was evident from the time he first arrived on the scene and I always invited him to play in my tournament at Bay Hill. What he brought to the game, especially in Europe, is well-documented. He was probably the main man, the greatest contributor to the European golf scene and to the Ryder Cup when they brought all of Europe into the matches. He will be sorely missed throughout the world of golf."
Posted by scurry at 06:15 PM
May 05, 2011
Day in the Life of The King: Arnold Palmer opens up
Courtesy of PGATOUR.COM - By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM Site Producer
This happens any number of times a day, five days a week, at the house The King built, where Palmer shows up to work every morning, his trusty golden lab by his side. Dogs aren't allowed at Bay Hill, but Mulligan is tight with the owner.
There are very few living legends so intimately and comfortably connected to the public as Palmer is. It's why he has such an enduring legacy that has transcended golf for more than a half century. Even if you're not old enough to remember that whirling dervish swing and those 83 career victories around the world, chances are you've heard of an Arnold Palmer -- a half iced tea, half lemonade beverage.
Arnold Palmer reviews drawings at his design company offices at Bay Hill.
Palmer is as much one of the greatest golfers in the history of the game as he is an icon. On the golf course, he made just over $3.6 million in official earnings in his career. Off it, he earned $36 million in 2010 alone, according to Golf Digest.
Still, for a guy who could call a palace home Palmer has modest digs -- a condo on the Bay Hill property he shares with his second wife -- and he starts his day a lot like you.
"Well, I get up," Palmer quips when asked what a typical morning entails.
It's that regular-guy approach that is the central theme behind Palmer's massive appeal. During his playing days, it was also his hard-charging style, good looks and charisma. That's what wooed television audiences to golf in the 1950s and '60s and set the stage for everyone who followed.
Palmer won his first of seven career major championships at the 1958 Masters and two years later became the first client of the late Mark McCormack, who went on to form International Management Group, now known simply IMG, which would become the largest sports and talent representation agency in the world.
Now Palmer spends the majority of his days making ceremonial appearances, overseeing the business of Bay Hill and his club in his native Latrobe, Pa., his golf course design company of the same name and a number of other ventures. At 81 years old, he's as spry as ever.
"This morning we've had numerous people in to say hello and get some autographs. And then I just work," Palmer says from behind his desk overlooking his kingdom. "I sign a lot of stuff here, I do contracts, review business deals, talk about future outings, and I review the business of the club here and in Latrobe. I review almost everything."
He also signs everything -- and anything. Once at an autograph signing in Arizona, a man sat down, took off his prosthetic leg and passed it forward. Palmer signed it with that unmistakable and incredibly recognizable signature (a lost art these days). When a member of his staff suggested he'd probably never signed one of those, Palmer said, "Oh yes I have."
As he's oft to do, Palmer drops by his design company on this particular day, just down the steps and across the parking lot from his office. It's not long before he is at a drawing table, asking one of the architects what they've got going on with a particular rendition.
"Mr. Palmer is very hands on," a member of his team says. "And I think he likes to get out of the office upstairs."
Golf course design is one of the many areas in which Palmer has become a brand name. Though the business has been hit particularly hard in recent years due to the economy, the APDC has projects and courses in 27 countries and 37 states in the U.S. Palmer got his start in the design business during a three-year stint in the Coast Guard.
"While I was in training, the commander of the base knew that I was a golfer and he suggested I try to make a little nine-hole course on the base so the guys during their spare time would have an opportunity to play golf," Palmer says. "It was pretty rough but for some of the guys it gave them an opportunity to go out and hit golf balls and create games to occupy their spare time. It was never really finished because I was transferred, but they still played it and had fun on it for a few years after."
Palmer gets a twinkle in his eye when he talks about his Coast Guard experience, much the same way he does when discussing flying, another passion of his. On one of the tables in the design company office is a model of the Citation X he piloted up until earlier this year, when he took his final flight after logging more than 50 years and 20,000 hours of time in the cockpit.
"That [final flight] was a bittersweet situation," Palmer said. "I enjoy flying and I still enjoy it. I think I'll still keep some hand in it but the business end of it and everything else has convinced me I should slow down and enjoy the back of the airplane. That's going to be very difficult for me. I hope I can be comfortable sitting in the back but I'm not sure that I will be."
Palmer has more pressing issues, though. "I've got some work to do this afternoon," he says before disappearing back to his office for a couple of hours.
But it's not long before Palmer is stopped outside the lodge. After all, someone wants to get his autograph and take a picture.
Posted by scurry at 01:50 PM
May 04, 2011
Arnold Palmer Interview
Arnold Palmer interview from Wednesday, May 4, 2011 at the Wells Fargo Championship at the Quail Hollow Club, Charlotte, NC. Palmer played in the pro-am event with his grandson Sam Saunders.
Q. What's the course feel like out there?
ARNOLD PALMER: Well, it played tougher than I've ever seen it play, but it's great. I think it's set up for a real good tournament.
Q. It seemed like you were in great spirits today, even joking with the crowd at one time when you hit a sand trap. What's it like for you to hear your name called out everywhere you go? Do you ever get used to that feeling?
ARNOLD PALMER: Well, I enjoyed the day and I enjoyed the people. I haven't been here for a while, and I lived here for a number of years, as you know, and it was great. Everything was good. Johnny was great, my grandson Sam hit the ball pretty good, and I'm looking forward to having a good week.
Q. Rocco Mediate told me earlier that you were the guy who taught him how to conduct himself on the course and how to interact with fans. When somebody says something like that, what's that mean to you, especially coming from a guy like him that's very popular?
ARNOLD PALMER: Well, it means a great deal. Rocco is one of my boys. He's doing very well, I think, and he's a great guy. I like to see him play and continue to play good.
Q. You guilted Johnny into the back tees. You wanted to play the tips today?
ARNOLD PALMER: Hey, you know, it's something ‑‑ when you do something wrong and it's minor, don't do it. If you're going to do it, do it right, so we did today. We played where we had no business playing. (Laughter.)
Q. What was it like being out there with your grandson playing here? Special feel for you out there?
ARNOLD PALMER: Well, it was great, seeing him play and getting a feel for what's going on in his life right now. Of course you know I did it for 50‑some‑odd years, and to see him now doing it ‑‑ and he's having a bit of a struggle, but I think he's going to do well. He's strong, he looks pretty good playing, and I look for him to do well this week.
Q. How often do you play these days?
ARNOLD PALMER: This is the first time in ‑‑ I've played twice in about ten days, that's all. I don't play much anymore, as little as possible, and hopefully even a bit less than that.
Q. In your prime if you had played with this equipment, how would you have played with today's equipment?
ARNOLD PALMER: Oh, my. That's a good question. I don't know. The equipment that we have today is fantastic stuff, and it would have been fun in my day to have all this modern stuff, the golf ball, the clubs, but I'm still rooting for shortening the ball down a little bit.
Q. You have a lot of history in Charlotte. Do you feel a special bond with this city?
ARNOLD PALMER: Well, this has been sort of a second home to me for many, many years, going back to my Wake Forest days, when Dick Finney was a football player here and then went to Wake Forest and played golf and some other people from here who I befriended over the years. So there's a lot of reason for me to enjoy Charlotte.
Q. You had a big gallery following you today. How did that make you feel, to see so many people that wanted to come out and watch you play?
ARNOLD PALMER: Well, that was very flattering. They knew I wasn't going to play any kind of great golf, but it was fun. It was fun seeing the people. I saw so many old friends. That was the thrill for me, and it made the day. It made it a nice day for me.
Q. Golf is considering changing a rule based on what happened to Webb Simpson last weekend. He took a stroke penalty because the ball moved by force of nature, which forced him into a sudden death playoff and then he lost. What do you think about that rule?
ARNOLD PALMER: Well, that's a situation for the United States Golf Association, and I think they'll look into that properly, and I hope that they'll find something to do that will alleviate things like what happened to Webb last week. He really deserved a little better fate, but he handled it extremely well, and that's kind of the name of the game as far as I'm concerned. He handled it well. He's a good player, and he will win down the road, and that's the important thing.
Posted by scurry at 07:48 PM