First Tee dedicates its learning center - The Explorer: Sports

First Tee dedicates its learning center

Drive it straight, true, kids told

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Tuesday, October 12, 2010 11:00 pm | Updated: 8:15 am, Thu Mar 24, 2011.

Special to The Explorer

Greg Byrne, University of Arizona athletic director, drove the ball straight and true Friday, when The First Tee of Tucson and the Tucson Conquistadores dedicated the new Tucson Learning Center.

Eight other symbolic drives, each representing a core value taught in The First Tee Life Skills program, found the practice range fairway at the Trini Alvarez-El Rio Golf Course, 1400 W. Speedway. Those values are honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, confidence, responsibility, perseverance, courtesy and judgment.

The First Tee is about more than golf. Byrne told young golfers to embrace the program's lessons in their sport, in their classrooms and throughout their lives.

The Tucson Learning Center contains classrooms for coaches and mentors to teach goal-setting, decision-making and mentoring. Those are "all skills that can be used on and off the golf course," a release said.

The Learning Center is a companion to the facility's three-hole, par-three layout within the practice range, and the synthetic Tour Turf practice green and tee line. The renovated 18-hole El Rio Golf Course is also utilized by The First Tee members.

Private community foundations, local contractors, volunteers and the City of Tucson teamed to make The Learning Center happen.

"It's here in The First Tee of Tucson Learning Center, where sport is translated into valuable life lessons, so our young golfers have the tools they need to succeed on and off the golf course," said Tucson City Councilwoman Regina Romero. "I'm so proud of my neighborhood and my community."

"The First Tee of Tucson is a model for establishing public and private partnership that contributes to the well-being of the community," said Dan Meyers, a Tucson Conquistador who serves as president of The First Tee of Tucson.

The Tucson Conquistadores fund the operation of The First Tee of Tucson program with ticket proceeds from the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship, held each year at the Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain in Marana.

More than 1,500 local kids are currently enrolled in The First Tee of Tucson. It recruits youngsters ages 5 to 17 from every corner of the Tucson community, especially disadvantaged and at-risk children. Volunteers serve as coaches for the hundreds of participants. The program began in 2005.

There is a special tribute in the building to the late Ricki Rarick, affectionately known as "Mr. Golf," for his contributions to establishing the Tucson Open golf tournament and the local junior golf program.

Everyone enjoyed Sonoran hot dogs, tacos and caramelos from neighborhood eateries afterward.

For more information, visit

© 2014 The Explorer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

More about

More about

More about

Welcome to the discussion.

Oro Valley Audiology

Oro Valley AudiologyAddress: 2542 E Vistoso Commerce Loop Rd, Oro Valley, AZ 85755Phone:(520) ...

HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 30

Boys Golf (3 p.m.)

Mountain View at Haven Golf Course

Ironwood Ridge, Buena, Catalina at Rincon (Dell Urich)

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at CDO

Maricopa at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Vista Grande

Poston Butte at Catalina Foothills

San Miguel at Pusch Ridge

Freshman Football (6 p.m.)

Maricopa at Marana

Wednesday, October 1

Girls Golf (3 p.m.)

Mountain View vs. Ironwood Ridge (Omnu Tucson National)

CDO, Sunnyside at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Sabino at Catalina Foothills

Cross Country (4:30 p.m.)

Ironwood Ridge, Sahuarita at Flowing Wells (Columbus Park)

Marana, St. Gregory at Catalina Foothills

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

CDO at Ironwood Ridge

Freshman Football (6 p.m.)

Mountain View at Salpointe

Catalina Foothills at CDO

JV Football (6.p.m.)

Marana at Maricopa

Salpointe at Mountain View

CDO at Catalina Foothills

Thursday, October 2

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Mountain View, St. Gregory’s, Pusch Ridge at Marana

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Poston Butte

Catalina Foothills at Flowing Wells

Pusch Ridge at Willcox

Varsity Football (7p.m.)

Maricopa at Marana

Mountain View at Salpointe

Catalina Foothills @ CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Rincon

Friday, October 3

Boys Golf (all day)

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Santa Rita/Flowing Wells Invitational

Girls Vollyeball (all day)

CDO, Catalina Foothills at Falcon Invitational

Cross Country

Catalina Foothills, CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Desert Twilight Festival

Varsity Footbal (7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at San Tan Valley

Saturday, October 4

Boys Golf (all day)

CDO at Santa Rita/Flowing Wells Invitational

Swimming (all day)

Catalina Foothills, CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Brophy/Xavier Swim Invitational

Girls Volleyball (4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Desert Christian

MOS: Halloween

We asked the community about Halloween!

MOS: Ebola Virus

We asked the community about the Ebola Virus.

More Featured Videos

Follow us on Facebook