First Tee of Northwest Arkansas uses the game of golf to teach kids life skills, and champion golfer Cristie Kerr led a golf clinic at the Lowell facility.
Executive Director Mike Shea says golf is a perfect vehicle to teach kids personal responsibility and accountability. He says the chance to meet a professional golfer will encourage his students to stick with it.
"She started when she was 8 years old, and, like she told the kids, she couldn't hit it 100 yards those first 2 years," Shea says. "That's something they can take home and go, 'Oh maybe... maybe."
The organization is trying to get its students involved in the tournament as much as possible, and more than 200 kids have volunteered to caddy for the pro-am and serve as gatekeepers throughout the weekend.