18 Holes 18 Questions: Shirley Ryan

GOLF NL

18 Holes! 18 QUESTIONS!

Name:  Shirley Ryan

Pippy Park Golf Course

Biography: 

Shirley Ryan of Pippy Park Golf Club is a retired Business Instructor who started golfing at age 53 while teaching at CNA-Qatar.  Returning to St. John’s, Newfoundland, in 2011, she golfed at the city courses, eventually getting involved with the ladies league at Pippy Park, helping to bring it from 30 to 230 members. Shirley sits on the Board of Directors for PPGC, plays bridge, the accordion, and travels extensively. 

  1. What is your full name?
    Shirley Grace Ryan
  2. Where were you born?
    I was born in Gander and I now live in St. John’s.
  3. What would people be surprised to learn about you?
    That I have visited over 50 countries including Syria and Russia.
  4. Are you a member of a golf club and whom do you regularly golf with?
    Pippy Park Golf Club is my “home” club and I play with Sandy Fahey and Glenn Myers.
  5. What’s your favorite course that you have played?
    Pippy Park and Willows are my favorites.  The both have great scenery and challenging hills.
  6. Where and when did you start golfing and what course would you like to play anywhere in the world?
    I started golfing in 2007 in Doha, Qatar and I would love to play The Old Course in St. Andrews, Scotland.
  7. Can you (briefly) tell us your most memorable golf experience.
    At the Golf Awards luncheon when Pippy Park won 2022 Golf Course of the Year.  Our Junior program received honorable mention, and our Ladies League was recognized as “one of the most attractive, entertaining and engaging leagues of any across Atlantic Canada.”  As one of the convenors of the Ladies League, it was great to be recognized for our efforts.
  8. Can you (briefly) tell us your funniest golf experience.
    When playing Osprey, Clovelly (now South Course, Bally Haly), I landed the golf ball on a tree branch.  Rather than taking the drop, I tried “batting” it out of the tree like a baseball and it just dribbled to the ground.  A golf club is no substitute for a bat!
  9. What is your greatest golf accomplishment?
    Getting a hole in one on hole #3, Black Duck, Clovelly, with Sandy Fahey and Heather McGarvie.
  10. How do you like to relax?
    Having a dance and singing along to the songs.  Music feeds my soul.
  11. What is your most treasured golf possession?
    My golf buddies.
  12. What is your best/worst quality on the golf course?
    Best – patience.  Worse – rushing my shots when I am having a bad hole.
  13. What 3 professional golfers would you like to join you at a dream dinner party? To be honest, I have hosted caddies at the Qatar Master’s, and I have come to realize they have the best stories of what happens on the golf course.  I would rather have a dinner party with three top caddies and get the inside scoop!
  14. Have you ever had a hole-in-one? When and where?
    Yes, on September 16, 2019, hole #3, Black Duck at Clovelly (now North Course, Bally Haly
  15. What is your best score ever? When and what course?
    Every score that is lower than the last score!  Who’s counting?
  16. What is your favorite/least favorite golfing hole on a Newfoundland & Labrador golf course?
    My favourite hole is #7 on Admiral’s Green, Pippy Park Golf Club.  My least favourite is #13 at Twin Rivers, Terra Nova.
  17. What do you think is the worst rule in golf and how would you change it?
    I believe the worse rule was “Ball moving after address.”  This rule only applies now if the player caused the ball to move.
  18. What advice would you give to a young golfer starting to play golf today? 
    Enjoy the sport, don’t take it too seriously, and leave your ego at home.