By John Strege
The use of cell phones on golf courses, though often criticized, is here to stay, excepting private facilities that ban them. So why not embrace them?
Greenhorn Creek Resort in Angels Camp in California gold country (shown above) is doing so in creative ways, equipping its golf carts with small solar panels and USB hubs for the purpose of charging cell phones.
Moreover, it has its own mobile app that, among other things, has GPS rangefinder capabilities -- yardages to the front, center and back of greens, as well as to hazards, and carry distances.
"So far it's proven to be extremely popular," Greenhorn Creek head professional Allan Ramorini said. "As busy as everybody is and not having a lot of time to play golf, this allows them to stay connected to work, with their phones right there, and it has the GPS on it. It's a value-added bonus. It's been neat. Before, they might not have wanted to use their phones [with GPS apps] because their batteries were going to die."
The solar panels and USB hubs are provided by Cart Golf GPS, an Ogden, Utah, company whose primary business has been GPS systems for golf carts, as its name suggests. Greenhorn Creek is first client for the solar panels and USB hubs.
"We actually just recently started it and haven't put it out to the market yet," Chad Brown, president of Cart Golf GPS said. "We just have the one course. But everything seems to be working really well with it."