Characters & Critters

Tee Times Magazine’s Characters and Critters

Tee Times Magazine’s Characters and Critters, is a fun collection of articles covering individuals and our wildlife friends that inhabit our area golf courses. These are stories that will either bring and smile to your face or a tear to your eye. Please take some time to read and enjoy this wide diversity of interesting stories.

Hummingbird Hats

The Basketball Golf Group, BGG for short, was ready! They had made the annual golf trip since their college years. The BGG had won the small school state basketball championship as high school seniors.

The Natural

In the 26 years that we owned and operated Mille Lacs Golf Resort, the infinite variety of golf characters that we encountered was never ending. Good golfers, bad golfers, really nice people and some horse’s a$$es. But I only met one truly natural golfer.

Rabid Bobcat Attacks Golfer

On a recent April morning, a surprise ambush left a 70-year-old golfer mauled and bleeding on a golf course in Connecticut. It was not from another golfer who had been beaned by a golf ball. The attack was from a bobcat with rabies.


It was the couples club championship at Whispering Pines Golf Club near Myrtle Beach. On the final day, Frank and Linda were leading by four strokes with only seven holes left to play.

The Bulkhead Wall And The Push Cart

The question is: Can we consider a bulkhead wall on a water hazard a critter? As a writer, I will use my poetic license to say, yes. The story is good enough that you will forget whether it was a Critters or a Characters story.


Joe Knight needed only 19 putts to win the Santa Rosa Beach Golf & Beach Club Senior Club Championship.

Roadrunner Breaks An ‘Egg’

Golf in the desert Southwest has always been one of my favorite places to play. There is nothing like golf in perfect weather conditions on immaculate rye grass turf.

Big Roy

With matching clothes, big cigars and soft country music, Big Roy was an unusual golf partner.


The sun had just cleared the mountaintop as 24 golfers nervously stood on the 17th at Pebble Beach. It was 7:30 AM and one – and only one – golfer would advance from this “Sudden Death” playoff.


The scene, July 26th, 2018, Breezy Point, Minnesota. As Rick Aulie’s driver head made that “smack sound” and perfect contact with the golf ball, the stop watch was clicked and the race to set a World Record was on!

The Amigos And The Deer Flies

The four Amigos had been friends since grade school. Growing up in Duluth, they played golf at Lester Park in the summer and hockey all winter. The Amigos never realized that the two sports complemented each other.

Fuzzy Loves Bucket Mouth Bass

The huge large mouth bass stood on its tale and spit the black and silver crank bait back at the surprised fisherman, Fuzzy Zoeller. Is this Lake of the Ozarks or Falcon Reservoir in Texas, both known for great bucket mouth bass fishing?

Mike Cleland

8 shots in 3 holes! 4 under par! But there is more! I have known Mike Cleland for over 40 year. He has always been a really good golfer. But Mike, like fine wine, just gets better with age.

Goats As Caddies

Change has been the only constant since Scottish shepherds started whacking round stones with their shepherd’s crooks. Clubs, balls, courses, rules and yes, even caddies continue to change over time.

Hedgehogs On The Golf Course

No, I have never seen a hedgehog on a golf course. But, this past winter, I did see a woman on the beach in Florida holding one in her hand while taking a picture of her hedgehog in the sunset.