St. Louisan on quest to play and review every golf course in Missouri. Sikeston next, then Charleston.
Mark Schupp sold his business in 2014 and immediately got to work on accomplishing something no one else has done, playing every one of the approximately 375 golf courses in the Show Me State.
As opposed to many prospective retirees who are worried about how they will fill their time, Schupp wasn't quite sure if he would have enough time to do everything necessary to pull this off.
"This project is all consuming," Schupp said. "Creating the website, keeping it up to date, contacting the courses, planning the schedule, booking hotels, etc. keeps me busier than my job ever did. Playing the courses is the easy part."
Schupp's next stop will be in southeast Missouri when he will hit Fox Haven Country Club, the Charleston Country Club and Crowley's Ridge in Bloomfield on Thursday.
In preparation for this quest, Schupp took a class at the local community college in the beginning of 2015 and spent the next 7 months designing and programming a website to track and review each of the courses he plays. The site, www.MoGolfTour.com, is also intended to provide useful information to golfers looking for a course in any city throughout Missouri.
"The website is never where you want it to be so you are constantly making adjustments to it," Schupp said. "I've spent the winter months modifying the look of the reviews for each course and spent considerable time making changes to improve the SEO of the site. It is still not where I want it, but it will continue to improve. I do not have a computer background by any stretch of the imagination so it is quite a challenge for me. I am particularly excited about playing the local courses in smaller cities across the state."
New to his repertoire will be a category of courses called "pasture golf." While Mark is a member at a local country club in St. Louis, he looks forward to experiencing all Missouri has to offer.
"I am really excited to play across the state. Courses tend to take on the flavor of the community and each has its own personality," Schupp said.
While touring the state, Schupp is getting more out of the tour than he expected.
"I am finding that playing every course in Missouri is much more about just playing golf. It is becoming more about meeting and spending time with the great people of Missouri and hearing their stories," Schupp said.
Through the end 2015, Schupp has played 82 of Missouri's courses. Schupp kicked off the 2016 tour at the beginning of May and will spend the few weeks on the road playing as many courses as possible until his wife, a State Senator, comes home after being in legislative session in Jefferson City.
His goal for 2016 is at least 100 courses.