How to Get Autographs From sign Pro

Contacting professional golfers and getting their autograph can be tough. The reason for this is so much money is made from golfing memorabilia that the players have, for the most part, shut their autograph signing habits down. This isn’t to say you can’t get a golfer’s autograph–just that you may either need to find the golfer shopping for his groceries, or you need to buy his or her signature from a reputable dealer.

PGA has a deal with a company called Pro Tour Memorabilia to sign for them only. This means that, while other companies can still acquire signatures, the autographs that come from PTM are verified as real (and therefore expensive!).

However, you can still meet your favorite golfer number of ways. First, simply go to your local golf course and say hi to the club professional. More often than not the club pro has played a little golf and will know a few other pros and–if he or she feels the urge–can certainly tell you how to get in touch with them. But the more important task when dealing with your club pro is to find out when the next big tournament or Pro-Am will happen.

Large golf tournaments can only exist if there are a lot of sponsors, and since every big-name player is paid a hefty “appearance fee” for just showing up, the expectation is that the player will do a little PR for the tournament. That’s your chance to show up as well, make a little small talk, and say, “Hey, I wondered if you wouldn’t mind maybe signing my program for me.” The golfer may say no, but chances are he or she will be happy to sign.

In fact, most tournaments include several parties and/or banquets before and after the festivities. So if you can get yourself an invite to one of those, you’ll most likely find a whole lot of players happy to talk with you. A rain delay is another great time to locate your heroes, since they can’t change clothes or shower in case the rain breaks–they’ll have very little to do other than sign while they wait for the weather to get better.

“I understand it’s the people in the gallery who come out and support the game of golf that allow myself and other players to play golf for a living,” says Phil Mickelson. “If we didn’t have that type of support, well, as entertainers we wouldn’t be able to play golf for a living. So I try to take the time and show that I respect them, whether it’s to sign autographs or just acknowledge they’re there. I understand and acknowledge they allow me to play golf for a living, which is a wonderful way to make a living. And consequently, I try to do the same and just show how much I respect them.”

The Pro-Am is a great way to meet your favorite golfer, but it will cost you money. Spaces in celebrity Pro-Ams are normally auctioned off to people with money to blow, but if you can afford to get in the line-up, you’ll not only meet your favorite golfers–you’ll also play a round with them. And that’s got to be worth more than a signed photo in the mail, don’t you think?

Thinking fast is always an important part of meeting a celebrity in a way that it will be a positive experience. In 2003 when actor Bill Murray hit a golf ball into the crowd during a Pro-Am tournament in Pebble Beach, the quick-thinking woman he’d bit came out from the gallery and asked him to sign the ball. In a situation like that, how could he not? In fact, Murray goofed around with the woman for a few minutes before he signed the ball for her and moved on.

Every professional golfer of importance is sponsored by a company, generally one that has something to do with golf wear or club manufacturing and the like. Those companies, as part of their sponsorship deals, require the golfer to get out and do some PR work. So if you can’t find a way to write the golfer professionally, try sending a note to the company that sponsors him or her. It’s a long shot, but worth a stamp for sure.

One thing to remember is if you do spot a celebrity golfer, don’t rush up and be a pain on the course. Remember, golf may be a simple pleasure for you, but for the players it’s their livelihood. If you interrupt them while they’re preparing for a tournament, you might end up with your head bitten off rather than a signed picture. Handy items to keep with you for signing may include a scorecard, a tournament program, a cap, club-covers, and even a ball. But remember–without a good pen–they won’t be signing anything!

Golf fans are expected to be calm, good-natured and gentlemanly at all times, and when they are, the pros tend to chum around with them. Unruly fans get short shrift, says Davis Love III, pointing out the difference between private and public course fans. “[Public course players] like to talk a lot. They might get mad if they are the 527th person in line and didn’t get their autograph,” says Love, adding that the “people who behave” get more of his time than those who get snippy.

In fact, according to Jim Furyk, being a nice person can have advantages far beyond just a signature. He met his wife while signing autographs on a golf course. “I was playing a practice round on Wednesday, and when I got off the golf course there were a bunch of kids behind the green. I was signing autographs and playing with the kids and I happened to see her standing there. I said hi to her, thinking she was very attractive. A friend of hers was there and he kind of introduced us, and then invited me to go to dinner with himse


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