New Golf Retailer In Thunder Bay: Paradise Golf
by Scott A. Sumner
"I've always wanted to get in the golf business since I was 8 years old, took two pieces of wood, held them together and used it as a club to hit golf balls in the back yard," smiles Murray Young, owner of Thunder Bays newest golf store, Paradise Golf. Young, age 47, is from Thunder Bay, born in Northwood and started golfing at age 8. "I've always loved the competitive side of the game. It just does something to me inside. We used to play 63 holes some days at Chapples as kids when all the city courses were 9 holes. The Chapples course has changed numerous times since then when there were the pros like Bill Gordon. He was an excellent teacher and showed me a lot about the game, grip and swing," notes Murray Young. "Part of golf is getting the fundamentals down before you go out and play. The golfer will find out they don't enjoy the game if they don't have the fundamentals down or pick the right club. Technology is changing the game, where you can take a club and customize it to your height and swing style which will factor into hitting the ball better and increase your enjoyment of the game. That's what it is all about. Everyone wants to hit it further and straighter." This is the main reason why Young has opened Paradise Golf in his own building on Frederica Street in Thunder Bay. He wants to help people choose the equipment right for them and therefore have more fun playing the game of golf.
"Golf is a very social game. I've travelled all across Canada and made friends along the way. Now that I have ventured into this business Ive made more contacts with people in California, Florida and Toronto. A lot of business deals are closed on the golf course." smiles Young. "I'm not joining any specific golf course this year. When you work in the golf industry it is a 70 hour week so you have less time to golf. I start at 630 am, especially since since I am introducing a brand new product and store to the region. KZG Golf are out of California and have been around for a long time. It is played on all the tours. They carry a number of different lines and it is an excellent product."
Murray Young was employed by the Province of Ontario and has taken a leave to pursue his golf business. "If you dont do your passion and risk it, you will miss part of your life," notes Young. "The first set of clubs I got were used from a fellow who had bought them with the wrong shafts. Back then with the wooden heads and so on there wasn't the technology to take the shafts out, You just went and sold them and bought the correct clubs. I had to cut grass and shovel snow for two years to pay my mom back for those clubs." The lesson has stuck with Young in his current business. "I'm finding the consumers are under educated on what they should be buying. A preview of their swing will tell a lot about the type of club set up you need. I believe golf was a gift that was given to me when I was a kid and I kinda of want to give it back. From basic fundamentals to what I recommend they buy is something I want to offer to the golfing public," notes Young. "You can have the high end expensive to the average. Shaft technology can improve your game as well. For an average player who wants to player recreational golf there is no need to get into the expensive shaft."
"Golf is one of the few games you can always play as long as you can get along with people, enjoy the company and have a few laughs. Sometimes we can take this game far too seriously. It isnt what we do with our good shots but our bad shots," notes Young. "KZG is my start point. We look at the irons from the grip to shaft to head with many different models available at KZG. The heavier weighted sole model is for the easy swinger to help get them in the air. You also have the hybrid clubs which are very similar to a small wood. Most golfers with high handicaps have their 3 or 4 irons look brand new because they have a hard time getting the ball in the air with them. The hybrids clubs can advance your game as they are easier to hit."
"My goal is to make the equipment work for the golfer. We dont buy our clothes the same size so why would we buy the same golf clubs off the rack. They are all custom clubs at KZG," smiles Young. "I think golf is changing as you can price shop on line. When you buy locally you get service. The cloning is effecting the business as well as they have stolen ideas from the research of others. It took a long time to get the new KZG driver to the market so it is playable by all golfers. I have had a lot of interest so far and people are glad to see some competition for golf equipment in Thunder Bay. We will expand as we go along. I wont sell you something you don't need."
Be sure to visit the company web site www.paradisegolf.ca