I'm fortunate that I belong to a club because if I had to play all my rounds at muni's in the area, I would probably lose it. Since I belong to a club, that is where I play most of the time. On occasion though I like to play a different course and will end up playing one of the local muni's. During the week since one of these muni's is very close to my house, I prefer to go there to practice putting or my short game.
So I'm there one night last week on the practice putting green and there is a guy who has his child on the practice green with him. The child must have been no older than 4 years old and was damaging the practice putting green by taking a club from his Dad's bag and trying to use it himself. This was creating all kinds of indentations in the green. The child was loud and was walking all over the place, even walking in my line as I was practicing my putting.
I don't want to be a douche, but at that point I had it. I was watching this child destroy the green and all this time the child's father was doing his own thing just a few feet away. Finally I said something to the father and asked him to please stop his child from destroying the practice green. The guy had an attitude problem and said that it was just a kid and to chill out. Chill out? Your kid is destroying the course, stop him or I will get someone from the course to stop him for you. The guy yelled something at me in some asian language (not sure which) and then picked up his kid and left.
I'm all for having kids play golf and stuff but nobody should destroy the course. I understand that this is a muni course and that there are a lot of things that fly there that would not fly at a proper club/course (that should not be the case but unfortunately it is).
It seems like almost every time I go to one of these muni's, I always end up witnessing some kind of behavior that is just not acceptable let alone sometimes forbidden in the rules of golf. I don't want to come off as a rules/etiquette douche but I cannot stand it when I see people disrespecting or damaging the course. The answer that I always seem to get when I say something is that it's a public course?!?!?! If anything since it's funded partially with EVERYONE'S tax dollars, that should be even more incentive not to destroy!
I do not know if this is the way that things have always been or if this is something new that is perhaps a result of trying to grow the game of golf and as a result those that are new to the game do not fully understand how to behave on a golf course.
I live in the DC area and the muni's that I've seen this behavior at are in Montgomery County, Maryland. From what I hear the muni's in Montgomery County are actually very well maintained compared to muni's elsewhere. It's a shame because they'd be even better if people acted the right way instead of treating the course like their backyard. Anyone else notice similar issues? If so did you say something?