Chris Newson: Utah PGA Merchandiser of the Year – Public

By Kurt Kragthorpe

Tucked inside the spacious clubhouse of Soldier Hollow Golf Course in Midway is a 975-square-foot golf shop. That’s not a lot of space in the social-distancing era, but Head Professional Chris Newson maximized it in 2020.

“Merchandising is something that I really enjoy and is a great distraction from some of the not-as-fun jobs I do,” Newson said, the golf shop’s only full-time employee.

And this year, that required some creativity. With golfers having limited access to the pro shop, Newson had to catch their attention quickly. His strategy was to showcase one vendor at a time, sell those products via clearance incentives and then make way for the next vendor. Newson succeeded in multiple ways.

“The seasonal staff got really excited, bringing out the new products, freshening displays and educating customers about the features of the new items,” he said. “It was a great way to do things and it’s something we will likely continue to do in the future.”

Those seasonal employees clearly played a big role in Newson’s award, and he appreciates them. The Merchandiser of the Year recognition adds to his credentials that include the Section’s 2012 Professional of the Year award. Newson has been Soldier Hollow’s head pro since the facility opened in 2004 and is known for hosting tournaments, most recently the 2020 Utah Women’s State Amateur.

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