Life membership an ‘honour and a privilege’

A life of golf . . . Tokomairiro Golf Club life member and caterer Joan Clark. PHOTO: EVELYN THORN

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Tokomairiro Golf Club member and club caterer Joan Clark was recently recognised with a life membership for her 47 years of dedication to the club.

Clark was ‘‘very surprised’’ when presented with the membership last Saturday during the club’s opening day for 2023.

‘‘It’s an honour and a privilege to be awarded one of these. I feel pretty lucky,’’ she said.

The club honoured Clark as ‘‘famous’’ for her efforts in catering, as well as her roles as women’s president in 2006-07, a club captain three times and other roles within the club.

Clark got into golf through an aunt who played in the club.

‘‘When I started, I bought a $6 putter. I still use it to this day,’’ she said.

‘‘It has always been a strong club here, with plenty of players. Some of the people I call friends here I would have never met if it weren’t for golf.’’

Among her highlights as a club member were the four times she won the Leckie Cup.

‘‘I won once in 1986, once in 2001, once in 2004 and once in 2006.

‘‘I think that’s enough from me — I best share it around,’’ she joked.

The club has various events and tournaments for which Clark does the main catering.

‘‘I’ve done it for quite a while now, over a decade now, and I do enjoy it, along with getting out on the cart and hitting a few balls around the course.’’

Clark explained her love for the sport and people in the club.

‘‘Once you get into something, you get hooked. It’s an individual sport and you play against yourself to become better,’’ she said.

‘‘The social aspect is great here too. Everyone in the club has something to contribute, and we have very many talented people here.’’

Clark hopes one day to win the Jubilee Cup at the club’s August tournament and also hopes to inspire others, especially women, to take up the sport.

‘‘It would be lovely to see more women in golf.

‘‘People are welcome to join our club any time.’’