Tee Party of Five

Meet our fantasy foursome-plus-one



Tee Party of 5

 

Meet the anchor, producer, writer, lawyer, and CEO

you’ll want in your next foursome. Odds are good they’re

as passionate as you about the game of golf.

 

So often in this delightful yet frustrating game we call golf (a name chosen because all the other four-letter words were already taken), it’s not whether you win or lose, it’s whom you hit the links with—and schmooze and commiserate with while you’re at it. No matter what your score, you’d be in good company with any of these members of our fabulous fantasy foursome-plus-one.

 

Ernie Anastos

 

 

Occupation Emmy-winning Fox 5 News Anchor / Hometown  Northern Westchester / Handicap 20 / Home Club Westchester Country Club, Harrison

 

How’d you get into the game?

“I started playing with my friends in New Hampshire when I was about sixteen.”

 

Favorite golf course and why?

“I love Westchester Country Club. It’s a challenging course but also a little forgiving. I played Pebble Beach and I also loved that course; it’s beautiful, with breathtaking views, and it’s well-designed. And the weather is always a comfortable temperature. I also like Spyglass Hill [in Pebble Beach]. It’s a sweet course and there’s something very charming about it. The last time I teed off there, I had a couple of deer by my side.”

 

What was the best piece of golf advice you ever got?

“To keep my head down; it makes a huge difference. When I keep my head down, I just hit the ball better. Another good piece of advice is to keep your mind relaxed. If I start to think about news stories I’m working on, I get distracted. If I have a serene mind, I can concentrate on the game. But you don’t want to be thinking too much about playing the game, because that takes away something from it, too.”

 

What do you most like to do after a game?

“I like to sit and have a sparkling water, especially at the club. And I like to eat the peanuts and crackers with the port wine cheddar cheese they have there; I have to stop myself from eating too many of them. Then I like to think a little about the game and talk to whomever I was playing with and sort of reminisce. I find it very relaxing.”

 

If you could play with anyone, who would it be and why?

“It would be a thrill to play with Tiger Woods. He’s such an amazing golfer. I’d love to be by his side and watch him play, and I think he’d give me some good tips.”

 

Your best golf fantasy?

“I’ve sort of lived it already—playing with my family in Pebble Beach.” 

 

Nancy Early

 

 

 

Occupation Freelance TV Commercial Producer

Hometown Pelham / Handicap 9 / Home Club Pelham Country Club, Pelham Manor

 

How long have you been playing golf?

“Seventeen years.”

 

How’d you get into the game?

“I was a tennis player but then I injured my shoulder—the rotator cuff. After it was repaired, I couldn’t play tennis for six months, so I took up golf. When I was a kid, I had learned to swing a club but not really to play the game. As a child, I grew up on a golf course in Portsmouth, Virginia. My parents would send us over to the golf clinics basically kicking and screaming, where we were in a group with the golf pro’s twin sons. One of them was Curtis Strange, who went on to win the U.S. Open twice.”

 

Favorite golf course and why?

“My favorite golf course, so far, is at the Sparrebosch Golf Club in Knysna, South Africa. It has the most breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean and beautiful rolling terrain with cliffs that go straight down to the ocean.”

 

What was the best piece of golf advice you ever got?

“Pelham’s Head Pro Mike Diffley told me: ‘Never let anybody change your swing.’  That was particularly important to me as an adult first learning the game, because golf is so hard, and there’s so much you need to know. That advice meant there was one less thing I had to worry about. It gave me confidence.”

 

What do you most like to do after a game and why?

“First, I take my shoes off! Then I have a gin and tonic. I am very competitive, so having a drink afterwards is a way to unwind.”

 

If you could play with anyone, who would it be and why?

“Annika Sorenstam, because she’s the best woman golfer in my age group, and I’d love to see how she would play the game and the course.”

 

Your best golf fantasy?

“To get a hole in one on the second hole at Pelham. It’s a long par three. Last summer I came three inches from one, and ended up getting a birdie.”

  

James Patterson

 

 

Occupation: Bestselling Author / Adopted hometown  Briarcliff Manor (real hometown is Palm Beach) / Handicap 10 

Home Clubs  Trump National Golf Club and Sleepy Hollow Country Club

 

How long have you been playing golf?

“I played a tiny, tiny bit when I was a kid, then didn’t play again until my forties.”

 

How’d you get into the game?

“I was at a driving range whacking some balls, and I enjoyed the whacking part. It was the whiffing part that bothered me.”

 

Which is you favorite golf course?

“I played Pine Valley in New Jersey once, and it absolutely lived up to its reputation as the best course in the United States. Every hole is completely different and very challenging. The second hole, for example, has sixty or seventy sand traps, half of them in the woods.”

 

What is the best piece of golf advice you ever got?

“Enjoy the walk. It’s good exercise.”

 

What do you most like to do after a game and why?

“Write—it takes my mind off of the tragic results of my golf game.”

 

If you could play golf with anyone, who would it be and why?

“Probably the Dalai Lama. I’ve tried all the other life and swing coaches.”

 

Your best golf fantasy?

“To get another hole in one, to tie my wife at three.”

 

 

Louis Ecker

 

 

 

Occupation Criminal Defense Attorney / Hometown New Rochelle Handicap 19 / Home Club Hampshire Country Club, Mamaroneck

 

How long have you been playing golf?

“More than fifty years.”

 

How’d you get into the game?

“My father was a golfer, and I golfed with him and my brothers at such local courses as Dunwoodie and Sprain Lake.”

 

Favorite golf course and why?

“Hampshire Country Club is still my favorite. It’s a challenging course, and every time I play it, I play it differently. And it has beautiful scenery.”

 

What is the best piece of golf advice you ever got?

“Over the years, various pros have told me, ‘Keep your head down and bring the club back slowly, and make sure you follow through.’”

 

What do you most like to do after a game and why?

“Take a nap.”

 

If you could play with anyone, who would it be and why?

“Tiger Woods, because he is the best there is. And Bobby Jones, Sam Snead, Arnold Palmer, and Jack Nicklaus, because they were the best at their time.”

 

Your best golf fantasy?

“To break ninety on a consistent basis.”

 

John Spicer

 

 

Occupation President and CEO, Sound Shore

Health System / Hometown Pelham Manor

Handicap 16 / Home club Pelham Country Club, Pelham Manor

 

How long have you been playing golf?

“Forty-six years.” 

 

Favorite golf course and why?

“I am a member of Pelham Country Club and I love that course—however, my favorite is Island’s End Golf & Country Club in Greenport, Long Island.  My family has been summering on the East End for fifty-plus years, and it is at Island End that I have my fondest memories of playing with my Dad, my wife and sons, and the rest of my family and friends.”

 

What was the best piece of golf advice you ever got?

“My father always says, ‘Don’t take yourself too seriously.  Enjoy the game. It is supposed to be fun.’”

 

What do you most like to do after a game and why?

“Cocktails and dinner—the social aspects of the game of golf are what make the game so unique.  My game sounds much better after a few drinks.”

 

If you could play with anyone, who would it be and why?

“My wife and sons—they give me the most mulligans.”

 

Your best golf fantasy?

“To be in the final group in the Masters on the final day.”             .           

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