Some call it the most valuable membership in golf! The Youth on Course program started in 2006 in Northern California, and is now in all 50 states and parts of Canada. The mission is to get kids playing on real courses for $5 a round. There are now more than 100 000 Youth on Course (YOC) members who have access to $5 rounds of golf at over 1400 courses. There is no reason why your junior golfer can't make use of this program to play some great courses in your region.
How do you sign up?
Junior golfers between the ages of 6 to 18 can sign up for a Youth on Course membership through the website: YouthOnCourse.org.
Annual membership costs depend on where you live and is set by the Allied Golf Association. For example, membership costs $30 in Portland, OR and $10 in Atlanta , GA. Not expensive regardless. Membership allows you to play a participating Youth On Course course for $5.
You will also need to answer some questions, called “the online curriculum” which covers some rules and etiquette, after which your membership will be activated.
Once you are signed up a membership card will be sent to you in the mail which must be presented at participating golf clubs to get the YOC $5 rate.
What courses can my junior play?
There are over 1400 courses in the USA and Canada that participate in the Youth On Course program. Participating courses can be found on the website as well as the YOC app. When checking in make sure to present your membership card to get the $5 rate.
What do I need to know when booking a tee time with a YOC membership?
The junior golfer will need to present the YOC membership card when checking in to pay at the Pro Shop.
Note that most courses have certain periods of the day (out of peak times) that they allow juniors to play utilizing a YOC membership so mention that when a tee time is being booked.
Tee times are often after 2 or 3pm but depend on the participating club.
A lot of courses require a paying adult to play with juniors under a certain range – sometimes 12, sometimes 16 years old. Some do not require an adult to play – these will be rules specific to the individual golf courses and need to be asked when booking the tee time.
Also note that the YOC rate does not include cart fees or range balls. The Youth on Course program strongly encourages players to walk the course.
What other opportunities are available for my junior golfer through the Youth on Course program?
The YOC organization is dedicated to opening doors, supporting dreams and transforming the lives of young people on and off the golf course. It also helps kids through Internship and Caddie programs through the Careers on Course Program and has scholarships available to high school seniors.
Why is a Youth On Course membership a good idea?
Cost is often a barrier to taking kids out for a game of golf. The YOC program has helped tremendously in that regard and many kids across the country are gaining the positive benefits of solid family time in some of the most beautiful settings you can get with their membership.
Junior golfers need to remember that they are being watched on the golf course - by other players, parents, and the club staff. They need to prove that they can play a round of golf and be respectful of the course and the field. A Youth on Course membership gives them the opportunity to play with the big boys. Trust they will do it well.
Additional reading: Golf Etiquette for Juniors