Friendships Outnumber Birdies in Sugar Creek Golf League

By Dave Adams and Paul Vogl
The Red Line Project

Posted: Sunday, June 5, 2011

Birdies are difficult to find for a certain group at Sugar Creek Golf Course in Villa Park. Bogeys and doubles are far more likely. But the laughs and friendships are easy to see.

“None of us knew each we started this golf league," said Jerry Seaberg, who organized one with a group of his friends at Sugar Creek. "Patti and I would come up here and play and we’d see Teddy, we’d see Danny up here all the time and then we’d see Mike and Little Mike [Mike Steinke] all the timel”

Jerry and Patti Seaberg had no idea they would form the bond of friendships at a local golf course until they came across another local couple, who were just trying to have a little fun.

Jerry Seaberg Photo

Jerry Seaberg looks on anxiously as his ball comes up
short of the green, again. (Photo by Paul Vogl)

“The way we met up was when Jerry and Patti would play in front of myself, my wife Laura and brother-in-law Mike and we’d catch up with them on the patio afterwards on Friday nights,” said Danny Novak

The more they saw of each other, it was only fitting that they take their relationship to the next level.

“Once we started playing together, I suggested we form a league," Novak said. "We’ve got a point system, we have a trophy, we have everything.”

While the group can all agree that they are surely not the greatest of golfers, their competitive juices are always flowing and rivalries form.

“Out of everyone in the group, me and Patti are the most competitive. When we’re playing against each other, it’s always down to the wire and for some reason I bring the best out of her” Novak said.

“I like to challenge his rule making and it just ticks him off,” said Patti.

Audio: Jerry, Danny, Laura and Mike talk about the group and the golf course.

Golf story by Cubbiepablo

To the group, the most important aspect in gathering at Sugar Creek is not for the golf itself.

“The golfing (is the worst part). When you play bad its frustrating but at the end it doesn’t matter,” said Laura Novak.

But some don’t see any problems at all when they come to Sugar Creek.

“There really is no bad part, we don’t look at that when we come here. It’s more social than golf, golf is like a secondary thing,” said Steinke.

Mike Steinke Photo by Dave Adams

Mike Steinke (Little Mike) relaxes with his friends
after a long day on the course. (Photo by Dave Adams)

The group respects Sugar Creek Golf course as if it were their own personal course and have been rewarded with mutual respect from the people that work there.

“When we can get a group of golfers together that enjoy themselves as much as the group that’s sitting on the deck right now, it makes our job a pleasure and makes us feel like we want to go to work again,” Gordy Roberts said.

“They treat us with respect, we treat them with respect, we’re all friends together and it’s a beautiful thing. It’s sort of like Cheers, we’re all Norm,” Novak said.

The group has turned Sugar Creek into their own personal hang out spot and says that the course ignites their friendship and gives them a reason to hang out.

“We don’t see each other much during the winter, but now every week we’re here or we’ll go out to dinner or come back to our house or do something together,” said Patti

“I call it S.C. National,  they treat us better than most people let’s put it that way, so anybody that walks in here I hope would know if there with us that they’re going to get treated just as well,” Danny said.

Golf Photo by Dave Adams

Danny Novak looks watches as a putt
rolls past the hole. (Photo by Paul Vogl)

Still, the group came together on the basis of friendship and at the end of the day when there are no more holes to be sunk they all can all laugh about how bad they played.

“None of us are any good, we’re terrible, but we’re all pretty even in terribleness,” Jerry said.

“We have a great time together playing 18 holes every now and again and we join up together at the end with more laughing while Jerry video tapes it all so we can laugh at it later,” Patti said.

The real fun starts when the group gathers on the deck, purchases several pitchers of beer and light up their cigarettes.

“As adults we like to get together drink and talk and we get to play golf on top of it, golf, talk and drink all at the same time, it’s wonderful,” Jerry said.

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