The wind shooting up Water Street cut through my scarf, my gloves, and my knit hat. I reflexively tightening the grip on the steel in my left hand, and brought my right up to my face to keep the scarf from allowing any more of that biting cold to hit my skin.
I got a few odd looks on the short walk from the OnMilwaukee.com office, down a few blocks to 530 N. Water St.
After all, itâ€™s not every minus 9-degree day that you see someone in Downtown Milwaukee hurriedly carrying golf clubs through traffic.
"Itâ€™s always 72 degrees in here all the time," laughed Tim Grogan, the PGA professional who owns and operates FORE! Milwaukee, an indoor-golf range and bar.
We wrote about Tim and FORE! about this time two years ago when he launched his idea of having a walking-friendly, Downtown golf facility.
"That was the big reason for doing this kind of business Downtown â€“ it was the convenience," Grogan said. "With the road construction in the Milwaukee area, it takes too long to go golf. And thatâ€™s golfâ€™s problem. It takes too long. By the time you leave the house, itâ€™s a six-hour ordeal."
Initially, he was in the Third Ward, but that building was sold.
This is his first winter at the current location on Water Street, and let me tell you, it was a nice mental reprieve to think about golf on one of the coldest days of the last few months and Grogan says heâ€™s seen an uptick in corporate and special events, as well as boom in leagues.
"Weâ€™re still drawing people in from the Third Ward, weâ€™re close enough there, to get our customers from there, and weâ€™re getting new customers from Wisconsin and Water St., the busiest intersection in Milwaukee," Grogan said. "Business guys are starting to see it."
The most important aspect of FORE! are the four high-tech simulators, where you can literally play entire round of golf â€“ every shot from first tee to 18th green â€“ and have the ball respond as it would outdoors.
Iâ€™m a fan of golf technology and my incredulit…Read more...