VANCOUVER - Kris Jonasson has never been to Scotland, but that figures to change soon.
Jonasson, whose passion for the game has served golfers in this province so well in his position as the longtime executive director of British Columbia Golf, has been elected as an ordinary (out of country) member of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews.
In other words, Jonasson is a member of the Old Course.
Jonasson got the news the other day via a letter sent the old-fashioned way: by mail. It was maybe the best Christmas card he's ever received.
"Once I pay the necessary fees, and I don't even know what those are at this point, then I am entitled to go to St Andrews at any time and I am entitled to play St. Andrews in the times that are reserved for members and it entitles me to use the clubhouse facilities," Jonasson said Thursday.
He was proposed for membership last year by former Royal Canadian Golf Association governor Kwan Choo of West Vancouver and was seconded by former RCGA president Don Griffiths of Vancouver. Both are R&A members.
"Once nominated, as I understand it, your name goes into some type of record over there and for a period of a year the members of the Royal & Ancient have an opportunity to see who is being proposed and if they choose to do so can write a letter in support of that application," Jonasson said. "I gather that if you receive enough letters your nomination goes to the membership committee."
Jonasson, a longtime member at Richmond Country Club, has run British Columbia Golf (formerly the B.C. Golf Association) since 1996.
"I was very excited and truly humbled," Jonasson said of receiving the news. "It's a nice honour and I look forward to an opportunity to go and participate in some of the members' outings that occur each year and meeting a whole bunch of different people.
"But I think the biggest thing is the satisfaction from knowing that a lot of very influential people in the golf world who are members would have written a letter in support of me."
ON SCHEDULE: British Columbia Golf has released its 2013 championship schedule and its highlights include the B.C. Amateur Championship being held July 9-12 at The Springs at Radium and Copper Point Golf Course.
Jonasson has long been a proponent of moving the B.C. Amateur around the province.
"I think it gives competitive golfers in different areas an opportunity to compete for the championship," Jonasson said. "We haven't had the Amateur in that area since we were in Golden (in 2006). It helps to highlight the quality of the golf courses that we have throughout the region."
The Women's Amateur Championship goes June 25-28 at Pitt Meadows Golf Club.
PACK YOUR PASSPORT: Abbotsford's Adam Hadwin and Roger Sloan of Merritt will begin their Web.com season chasing birdies in Central and South America.
The first three events on the 2013 schedule are being played beginning in mid-February in Panama, Colombia and Chile. The tour then returns to play a tournament in Louisiana before heading to Brazil for one event. Another tournament will be played in Mexico in late May.
The top 75 players in the Web.com Tour's 21 regular season events will qualify for September's four-tournament final series, where they will be joined by players finishing 126th to 200th on the PGA Tour's FedEx Cup points list and try to earn PGA Tour cards for 2014. The top 25 players on the Web.com Tour money list after its regular-season events will continue to earn a promotion to the PGA Tour.
CHIP SHOTS: Interested in some Christmas Eve or New Year's Eve golf? Mayfair Lakes has 10 a.m. shotguns scheduled both days (weather permitting). Call 604-276-0586 for details. . .Jeff Monday was recently appointed president of PGA Tour Canada (formerly the Canadian Tour). Monday was most recently the Web.com Tour's senior vice president of tournament business affairs.
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