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Saturday, July 24, 2010

Mark Baer advances to Optimist International Junior Golf Championships

Mark Baer is representing the Pacific Northwest District – Optimist International and the Meridian Optimist Club this week, July 29 to August 1, at the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships, taking place at the PGA National Resort and Spa in Florida.  He earned the right to advance by taking first place in the 16-18 year old division in the Pacific Northwest District Qualifier for junior golfers in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia.

Mark will join approximately 600 participants from 43 states and 33 countries including the United States and Canada.  One hundred and forty golfers are competing in the Boys 16-18 year old division.

Optimist International has been involved in promoting junior golf programs since 1978 when they joined the Junior World of Golf program in San Diego, California as the major sponsor of the event, thus creating “Optimist Junior World.”

 Seeing a need to provide opportunities for more children, Optimist International moved the event to South Florida in 1995 and renamed the event the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships. The plan proved so successful that it has become commonly known in golfing circles as The Optimist.  The tournament was the first junior program to be televised nationally on ESPN.

The Meridian Optimist Club began hosting the Optimist Junior Golf Championships pre-qualifying tournament in 2009 as a way to increase awareness for this great event and to provide opportunities for young golfers in Idaho.  Mark represented the Meridian Optimist Club at the district wide tournament last year and this year.  Not only did Mark win the tournament, he also became the first junior golfer to represent Idaho at The OPTIMIST. 

Mark graduated from Mountain View High School, Meridian, Idaho in 2010 and will attend the College of Idaho in the fall. 

Find out more about the Optimist Junior Golf Championships and follow the action online at www.golf.optimist.org.  

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