Golf season is right around the corner; the days are getting longer and we can feel it in our bones.  However, we cannot go outside yet, so what is a good way to get ready and improve your game?

Try the Empire Golf Expo at Siena College on March 11 and 12.

Seminars include the following topics:

— How golf and nature work together by Audubon International;

— Maintaining the course by golf-course superintendents;

— Rules of golf;

— New equipment;

— How to get fit;

— How to remain healthy during the season; and

— Free lessons from a golf professional.

There will be over 60 booths that will allow you to talk with representatives of daily fee, resort, and private clubs as well as others in the golf business. You will be able to purchase golf equipment at discount prices and take part in a putting contest.

Your basic admission is $10 but a $15 admission ticket gives you over $300 in value, including free green fees at over a dozen local clubs, a year’s subscription to “Golf Digest,” a ticket to the Future’s Championship, and a year’s membership in the Empire Golf Club. This club hosts 20 events a year at top private clubs, resorts, and daily fee courses at discount prices.  It also allows you to purchase discounted tee times at these top golf venues.

Golf history

Why do we play 18 holes?  It is not because there are 18 shots in a bottle of Scotch.

Back in the 1700s and 1800s, there was no standard. Some courses had four holes, others had six holes, and still others had 12 holes. It all depended on how much land they had.

St. Andrews in Scotland had 11 double greens with two holes on each green for a total of 22 holes.  You played one set on the way out and the other set on the way in. The ocean washed out two greens so St. Andrews was left with 18 holes and that became the standard we use today.

Trivia quiz

The original big three in golf were Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, and Gary Player. In total, how many professional majors did they win?

Email your answer and contact information to . The winner will be randomly selected from all the correct answers and win two Eagle tickets, over $600 in value, to the Empire Golf Expo.

Golf joke

The average touring golf professional walks about 900 miles per year.  However, he also drinks about 22 gallons of alcohol a year.  So the average pro averages 41 miles to the gallon, which is better than most cars.

Editor’s note: Douglas A. Lonnstrom, a professor of statistics at Siena College, has written several books on golf. He is a member of the Pinehaven Country Club in Guilderland.

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