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Father-Son Golf Clinic a stroke of genius

Lindenhurst author Sedrik Newbern tees up ball for his sMatthew 5 Father-SGolf Clinic Libertyville Golf Course. Newbern cooperatiwith Studio 59

Lindenhurst author Sedrik Newbern tees up a ball for his son, Matthew, 5, at the Father-Son Golf Clinic at the Libertyville Golf Course. Newbern, in cooperation with Studio 59 Golf, sponsored the event to highlight fathers who are making a positive differ

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Updated: August 18, 2013 2:32AM

Dads bonded with their sons for a fun day of golf instruction during the inaugural Father-Son Golf Clinic at the Libertyville Golf Course in Libertyville’s Riverside Park last weekend.

The event paired fathers and sons, and even a few grandfathers and grandsons, for a clinic to teach kids the basics of the golf swing and a little bit about chipping and putting.

Sponsored by local author Sedrik Newbern in cooperation with Studio 59 Golf, which now runs Libertyville Golf Course, the clinic was an opportunity for fathers to spend some quality time with their children and to highlight the positive impact dads have on their kids’ lives.

Newbern said the turnout of 20 people exceeded his expectations for the first year and he plans to make it an annual event.

“It was a good success and I think this is an event we should do every year based on the response and feedback we’ve gotten,” Newbern said. “It was really great the way kids and dads were bonding.

“Next year, we’d like to expand it to include a scramble format for older kids and dads,” he said.

The dads who participated found it a very fun and worthwhile event.

“I thought it was a great way to get out with the boys and introduce them to a game that I’ve loved for so long,” said Bill Devine of Schaumburg, who brought his two sons Chase, 5, and Shamus, 3 to the clinic. “I was introduced to golf by my dad at an early age. It was really nice I could pass it along to my two young guys.”

“It was awesome,” said Scott White, who works in Libertyville and brought his 8-year-old son, Tanner to the clinic. “It was a nice way to start off Father’s Day weekend. It was a nice, safe way for the kids to learn the game of golf.”

Instructors from Studio 59 Golf used the SNAG (Starting New at Golf) teaching method, which uses special equipment such as oversized plastic golf clubs and tennis balls to make learning the game easier for beginning golfers.

“The oversized clubs and balls make it easier to hit the ball and it helps kids gain confidence in hitting the ball,” said Ron Romack, vice-president of operations and director of golf for Studio 59 Golf. “It’s a great introduction to the game.”

Newbern, who grew up in a household without his biological father, hosted the golf clinic to honor fathers wo are making a positive difference in their children’s lives. Newbern, who lives in Lindenhurst and works as an insurance agent in Libertyville, last year released a book entitled “Unconditional Forgiveness.” The book is Newbern’s personal inspirational story about growing up without a father and how he eventually reconnected with and forgave his dad.

Newbern said he hosted the event around the one-year anniversary of his book’s release to honor fathers who are making a positive difference in the lives of their children. His goal is to make Father’s Day a national holiday.

Will Owens of Gurnee, who took part in the event with his 4-year-old grandson, Miles Thompson, said Newbern’s book and the cause he’s promoting has a special meaning for him. Owens said his parents split up when he was a young child. Also, the father of his grandson was killed when his daughter was pregnant with her child.

“The book is important because it tells us the impact those kinds of situations can have on children,” Owens said. “I definitely don’t want my grandson to be lacking a father figure in his life. The event was an opportunity for us to bond in a father-son type environment.”

Newbern plans to use proceeds raised from the golf clinic to donate about 20 copies of his book to children when he speaks to different organizations.

Also contributing to make the event a success were North Shore Pro-Active Health in Libertyville, and Integraphix. For more information about Newbern or his book, visit

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