Northwest Jr Golf Tour gives the juniors a chance to feel like professionals

Updated: April 4, 2011

By Jeff Mehlert
Special to Inside Golf
In 1999, while I was director of golf at Tacoma’s Meadow Park golf course, The Northwest Jr. Golf Tour was born when a student, Adam Miller, needed a great idea for his senior high school project. We thought that there were enough talented players in our region to support an “off season” junior golf tournament.

We had over 100 players compete in that first event, including PGA tour players like Michael Putnam, Kyle Stanley and Andres Gonzales. Fast forward 200 events later and we’re still having fun with great junior golfers and their parents, traveling all over the Northwest.

Our mission from the start was to get great courses like Chambers Bay, Bandon Dunes, Semiahmoo, Loomis Trail, Tacoma Country Club, Oakbrook CC, Canterwood CC, McCormick Woods, Gold Mountain, Trophy Lake, Oregon Golf Club, Stone Creek, Apple Tree, Wine Valley and Canyon Lakes to name only a few of the top courses we’ve visited. We wanted it to be affordable regional competition – $111 for 2 rounds of competition, with a tee prize and prize fund – encourage a positive family atmosphere (we allow parents to caddy and spectate, it’s been wonderful!) and recruit the best players and first time competitors from Canada, Washington, Oregon, Idaho and beyond.

We’ve had over 3,000 juniors compete on our tour, a large percentage have gone on to play at the collegiate level and professionally.

We help players gain national collegiate exposure (ALL our events are ranked by the National Junior Golf Scoreboard – a major source for college coaches to track the best high school players) and improve speed of play for junior golf tournaments – I’ve witnessed the 6+ hour rounds at junior golf events, makes me want to cry. We are proud to strictly adhere to the PAC-10 coaches “under 4” pace of play guidelines – our last 8 events have averaged 4 hours 15 minutes with field sizes over 100 players and the times continue to drop.

We don’t charge a membership fee. Boys and girls, grades 5th-12th with the ability to shoot below 100 for 18 holes are encouraged to play in as many events as fit their schedule and their budget. The 2011 Big Tour schedule has 18 events (each 36 holes from age appropriate tee yardages) our 2011 miniTOUR has 10 great events.

If you’d like to learn more or register for an event – go to and have a look around. We’re on Facebook (jr golf tour) and you can even e-mail me ( but only call if you have to at 360.895.0130.