The MAJOR of Golf Business

PGA Show Demo Day & Instructional Workshops
Tuesday, January 24, 2017
Orange County National Golf Center

PGA Show Days & Education Conference
Wednesday, January 25 – Friday, January 27, 2017
Orange County Convention Center Orlando, Florida


PGA Show’s Busy Opening Day Emphasizes Charity


2017 PGA Merchandise Show

2017 PGA Merchandise Show (photo credit: Montana Pritchard/PGA Golf Exhibitions)

After an opening day focusing on charity and technology, and featuring a bright marquee of golf celebrities, industry leaders and a PGA Show floor bustling with business, the 64th PGA Merchandise Show continues today at the Orange County Convention Center with a full Thursday.

If Day One was an accurate barometer, the 2017 PGA Merchandise Show – The MAJOR of Golf Business – will be remembered as one of the most exciting and successful PGA Shows yet.

“This reminds me of a young child on Christmas morning,” said Mark Lampe, PGA head professional at Maroon Creek Club in Aspen, Colorado.  “It’s an atmosphere of anticipation.”

PGA of America President Paul Levy lit the fuse on the 2017 PGA Merchandise Show Wednesday with an assist from Annika Sorenstam and Colin Montgomerie, and 2016 PGA Golf Professional of the Year Cary Cozby. What does that foursome have in common? Charity, which was a major theme on the PGA Show’s opening day.

“This year at the PGA Merchandise Show we are celebrating the countless efforts of PGA Professionals in raising nearly $4 billion annually for charity,” said PGA of America President Paul K. Levy.

Carrying the opening-day theme to the PGA Forum Stage Presented by OMEGA on Wednesday, Sorenstam, Montgomerie and Cozby joined World Golf Foundation CEO Steve Mona and Michelle McGann to discuss “The Impact of Charitable Efforts in Golf.”

2017 PGA Merchandise Show (photo credit: Montana Pritchard/PGA Golf Exhibitions)

2017 PGA Merchandise Show (photo credit: Montana Pritchard/PGA Golf Exhibitions)

Tiger Woods, who is competing in this week’s Farmer’s Insurance Open in San Diego, made Opening Day news when TaylorMade announced from the PGA Show Floor that the 14-time major champion has joined the company’s tour staff. Also, Titleist Brand Ambassador Jimmy Walker, the 2016 PGA Championship winner, helped Titleist launch its new ProV1x golf balls, 917 drivers and fairways, and new Scotty Cameron putters on Wednesday morning.

Additional PGA Forum Stage programs on Wednesday featured Bubba Watson, Greg Norman, Colin Montgomerie, Lou Holtz, PGA of America CEO Pete Bevacqua and Cobra Puma Golf CEO Bob Philion.

Day Two of the 64th PGA Merchandise Show – with the themes of employment and youth golf – continues with a full schedule of exhibits, demonstrations, celebrity appearances, education seminars, industry presentations and the PGA Member Town Hall, plus networking with PGA Show attendees and 1,000-plus exhibitors.


A starry Start to the 2017 PGA Show Includes Large Crowds, Steady Traffic


2017 PGA Show

JANUARY 25: PGA of America CEO, Pete Bevacqua and Lou Holtz speak with Bubba Watson during the SiriusXM Radio “State of the Game” (Photo by Traci Edwards/PGA of America)

The 2017 PGA Merchandise Show got off to a fast start on Wednesday with a star-studded collection of fan favorites from the worlds of golf and sport.  Golf stars including Bubba Watson, Greg Norman, Jesper Parenvik, John Daly, Hank Haney, Brooke Pancake, Tim Petrovic, David Leadbetter, Chi Chi Rodriguez and Blair O’Neal joined football coaching legend Lou Holtz, Fox Sports’ Holly Sonders and other celebrities in meeting and mingling with PGA Show attendees.  PGA Professionals, including PGA President Paul K. Levy, PGA Vice President Suzy Whaley and 2016 PGA Golf Professional of the Year Cary Cozby, also played a major role in the day’s events.

Of course, the real stars of the PGA Show were the nearly 1,000 exhibitors and the products that brought a day of steady traffic to the floor of the Orange County Convention Center. Exhibitors from across the equipment, products & services and apparel halls reported strong traffic throughout the day.



PGA Show New Product Zone preview the latest offerings


2017 PGA Merch Show

2017 PGA Merchandise Show (Photo by Traci Edwards/PGA of America)

The New Product Zone, located at the back of aisles 6200-6600 in the Apparel Hall, is providing PGA Merchandise Show attendees with a sneak preview of hundreds of new, innovative products being unveiled by nearly 1,000 leading companies on the PGA Show floor.

The New Product Zone is the first place I visited.  It’s my first stop every year, in fact,” said Martha Wells, PGA head professional at New York’s Country Club of Ithaca. “I get a feel for what’s new and then visit the booths of products that catch my eye.”

From new golf equipment and accessories, to the latest styles of apparel, and new training aids, any new product is eligible for the New Product Zone. PGA Merchandise Show officials say nearly 80 percent of all PGA Show attendees visit the New Product Zone during PGA Show Week.

Companies such as Bushnell, Fairway Leathers, Hole More Putts, Nikon Golf, October Golf Gear, Paladin Golf, Shot Scope Technologies, Wilson Golf and many others are part of this year’s New Product Zone.

“I get a lot of my ideas for tournament tee prizes and gifts at the New Product Zone. It’s a must stop,” added Paul Consolo, PGA head professional at Yeamans Hall Golf Club in Charleston, South Carolina.

The annual PGA Show New Product Zone awards recognizing the top new products of 2017 will be presented today at 3 p.m.

Planning trip? Travel Pavilion features many destinations


2017 PGA Merchandise Show

Travel Pavillon during the 2017 PGA Merchandise Show held at Orange County Convention Center on January 25, 2017 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Montana Pritchard/PGA of America)

Planning a golf trip in 2017? Your first stop should be the PGA Show Golf Travel Pavilion, located on the PGA Show floor at the back of aisles 3200-3600.  It features popular golf destinations, including Ireland, Scotland, France, Thailand, South Africa, the Dominican Republic and many others. Additionally, PGA Professionals have access to golf travel services from companies such as Premier Golf, Haversham & Baker, Rovos Rail, Traveling the Fairways and more.

The Tourism Ireland and VisitScotland exhibits are mainstays at the PGA Show Golf Travel Pavilion and feature multiple golf destinations, tourism attractions and travel services.

We have exhibited in the PGA Show Travel Pavilion for many years and regularly support the attendance of a wide range of golf tourism businesses in Scotland, including golf resorts, accommodation providers and tour operators,” said Alan Grant, senior golf manager for VisitScotland. “They all see it as a valuable way of maintaining existing relationships with their key contacts from around the world, but also an excellent opportunity to promote the benefits of Scotland, the Home of Golf, to new audiences each year at the PGA Show.”




PGA Education Conference features courses on five tracks


2017 PGA Merchandise Show

Hank Haney demonstrates for SkyGolf during the 2017 PGA Merchandise Show (Photo by Chris Trotman/PGA of America)

While the PGA Merchandise Show aisles are bustling with business, the classrooms at the Orange County Convention Center are equally busy with PGA Professionals and industry leaders earning Member Service Requirement (MSR) credits while attending some 60 seminars at the PGA Education Conference.

This year’s Education Conference features daily courses in five tracks – Golf Fitness & Wellness; Leadership; Teaching & Coaching; Retail, and Sales & Marketing. Each day’s schedule begins with a complimentary coffee and networking opportunity from 7:30-8 a.m., followed by classes in each subject daily beginning at 8:30 a.m. and a keynote speaker from 9:45 a.m. – 11 a.m.

I’m in the Education Conference classrooms in the morning and on the PGA Show floor the rest of the day,” said Rolando Hernandez, PGA head professional at The Quarry in San Antonio, Texas.  “It’s a convenient and informative way to earn all of my MSR hours.”

Today’s keynote speaker is PGA Master Professional Michael Leemhuis, the president of Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo, Florida. He will present “What Does Your CEO Expect From You as a PGA Professional?

AGM President Tracy Moffatt’s “Planning for a Profitable 2017” retailing presentation at 2 p.m. in classroom W101 is one of 11 afternoon seminars. PGA Education Conference seminars will continue tomorrow between 9 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.