Golf on the moon


The folks at the Florida Space Coast pointed out that 50 years ago this Saturday, on February 6, 1971, Alan Shepard, commander of NASA’s Apollo 14 mission played golf on the moon.

The club he used was a six-iron head attached to a collapsible aluminum tool designed to scoop up lunar dust samples. Shepard snuck the club and two golf balls on board.

Shepard said it was Bob Hope who gave him the idea to try his golf-on-the-moon stunt. Hope visited NASA headquarters in Houston in 1970 to prepare for a TV special with the Apollo astronauts. The golf-loving entertainer had his ever-present golf club with him. And he used it to lean on while testing out the training device that simulated the one-sixth gravity the astronauts would encounter on the moon.

Courtesy USGA Golf Museum

The golf balls were left are on the moon. But the original “Moon Club” is on display at the USGA Golf Museum in Liberty Corner, New Jersey.

A replica of the club is in the Smithsonian’s Air & Space Museum collection.

Courtesy Smithsonian Air & Space Museum

Fore! Virtual golf at MSP airport

It’s been tried in the past at airports in the U.S. and elsewhere. Now Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport is giving virtual golf another try.

This time it may just work!

PGA golf

Scheduled to open mid-March, the airport’s “golf lifestyle facility” will offer golfing activities and a lounge, along with retail, food and beverage.

A joint project of PGA of America and Twin Cities-based Wexford Golf, the facility promises golfers simulators loaded wit the world’s top golf courses, instructions from PGA Professionals, a practice green, a virtual driving range and a shop offering custom fit clubs and a wide range of merchandise.


There will also be a restauraunt: Champion’s Grille by Ike’s Food and Cocktail (operated HMSHost).

PGA MSP will be located in Terminal 1, just past security at the north end of the MSP Airport Mall, but plans are in place for day passes to be available for non-flying golfers.

What will it cost?

Entry to the golf lounge – which includes access to the putting green and “business-class” Wi-Fi is $10.

The golf simulator will cost $30 for a half hour and $50 for a full hour. A visit to the virtual driving range will be $20 for 15 minutes, $25 for 30 minutes and $35 for an hour. Golf lessons begin at $15 for a 15 minute tune-up.

Golfing at airports


I’m getting ready to fly to Hong Kong, where Sky City Nine Eagles Golf Course is one of the much-celebrated amenities at the Hong Kong International Airport.

If you’ve got a while to hang around before your flight, playing a round of golf is a great diversion. But there’s no need to go all the way to Hong Kong to play golf at an airport.

Several airports in the United States have golf courses on airport property that offer golfers the thrill – and challenge – of trying to concentrate on the game while giant planes roar overhead.

Metropolitan Golf Links is right next door to the Oakland International Airport. And the course at Huntsville International Airport seems quite popular: here’s a photo Cathy Mayer sent out on Instagram of her 14-year-old son, Hayden, playing golf at the airport during a school match.

Golfing HSV

In-flight golfing


File under: wish I was there to see this.

Through Monday, March 26, 2012, Air New Zealand is hosting an in-flight golf putting contest on flights between Auckland and Queenstown.

It’s a promotion to mark the airline’s airline’s sponsorship of the NZ PGA Pro-Am Championship and passengers enter by filling out an entry form at the departure gate lounge. Those whose names are drawn are invited to participate in the on-board putting contest. It looks like everyone will win something, but the overall winner will get plane tickets, a hotel stay, VIP passes to the NZ PGA Pro-Am Championship and Callaway golf clubs.

What’s next? In-flight bowling?