Inspiring Athletes

Last week at the Crowne Plaza Invitational in Fort Worth, Texas, I had the chance to talk to PGA golfer Kevin Streelman who last year developed an idea that eventually became known as FCA GAMEDAY. At 11 tournaments this year, PGA pros are taking time to walk the course with large group of young golf enthusiasts and share their Christian faith.

Here’s what Streelman had to say:

Bonham: What inspired you to come up with the FCA GAMEDAY concept?

Streelman: It was offseason going into the 2010 season and some things were coming out about our sport in the media that weren’t too positive. I said to myself, “I think we can do a little more.” The last thing Jesus said to the disciples was to go spread the Word to all nations. If we’re not using the platform we’ve been given to do something to help others, then we’re not taking advantage of the gifts he’s given us. GAMEDAY was just planted in my head. Tuesdays are easy days for us. We can bring kids out with us. They can walk out with us. It’s usually easy to get tickets. I thought the players would love it. I talked to (Tour Life Director) Ben (Bost) and got FCA behind it and they loved it. We just did a couple last year but decided to go full bore this year. It’s been an awesome event every time we’ve done it.

Kevin Streelman chats with amateur golfers at Crowne Plaza Invitational Pro-Am (Photo by Chad Bonham)

Bonham: What experiences have stood out to you?

Streelman: I love seeing these kids’ eyes when we speak to them. They’re so intrigued and they’re so into the golf and what we’re talking about, but more importantly the message we’re trying to get across to them. To see their passion and to see their minds start turning is what it’s all about for us. I love hanging out with the kids. They love seeing people that are passionate about golf like we are. That makes it all worth it.

Bonham: There really is no better sport to teach kids about integrity than golf, right?

Streelman: Absolutely. The First Tee program was out here too this week and they talked about their fundamentals and life lessons. That’s what we’re out here for. If we’re not out here to do good things with the platform we’ve been blessed with than we’re doing a great disservice.

Join Inspiring Athletes tomorrow for Throwback Thursday and an interview with Hall of Fame tennis star and former French Open champion Michael Chang.

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