Joe Skoglund 2016
In June of 1962, a friend and I drove from Omaha to Hillcrest CC in Lincoln, Nebraska to watch an exhibition golf match involving Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and the head Pro, Bunny Richards. Prior to their match, they warmed up by hitting some balls on the driving range. Just before they finished, Palmer announced they were
working on a trick shot and would give a demonstration. Player was set up to hit a 5 iron fade and about 20 feet to his right, Palmer was hitting a 7 iron draw. They each hit about 10 balls at the same time. On each shot, the idea was to hopefully have the balls collide in mid-air as they crossed paths. Since the crossing of the golf balls occurred about 170 yards out, it appeared that the balls came very close to colliding, even though none of the shots collided. They went on to play their exhibition match and I don't remember what their finishing scores were. I have such good memories of this day, almost like it happened recently.
I knew from that moment that I would be a great fan of Arnie. 54 years later, on
February 11, 2016, after playing a round of golf at Arnie’s home course, Bay Hill Club and Lodge, in Orlando, I met the “King”. When we arrive the day before, I mentioned to the bellman, that I would love to meet Arnold Palmer. After playing 18 holes the next day, my wife and I were in the bar having a drink and someone tapped me on the shoulder. It was the bellman who told me “If you want to meet Mr. Palmer, he will be in the men’s locker room for about 15 minutes”. I was taken to the men’s locker room and had the opportunity to meet the 'King', talk with him for about 15 minutes and have a picture taken with him. Then 8 months later, he was gone to be with the golfing gods in heaven. I was thrilled to have been able to personally meet him. He is my all-time favorite golfer and athlete. RIP Arnie and thanks for all of the awesome memories.
Joe Skoglund (firstname.lastname@example.org) , Corona Del Mar, California