Fire Pit Collective Journeys with Colt Knedler
Tucked away in the North Carolina Sandhills is America’s St. Andrews. For over 120 years, golfers have come to the Pinehurst area to experience the world-class courses and Southern hospitality. In The Fire Pit Collective’s “Journey to Pinehurst,” Colt Knedler spends the week paying his respects to the champions, pioneers and legends of the game who have shaped the village and its famous resort, while glimpsing Pinehurst’s future with today’s community leaders.
Ep.1 – Donald Ross’s Masterwork in Southern Pines
In episode 1 of our “Journey to Pinehurst,” we explore the world of Southern Pines Golf Course. Kyle Franz takes us through the architectural journey of restoring Donald Ross’s masterwork, as well as Franz’s work at nearby courses Southern Pines, Pine Needles, and Mid Pines. Kyle plays a few holes with Colt and provide insight from the architect’s vantage point. After the round, Colt tours another beloved local attraction, Southern Pines Brewing Company.
Ep.2 – Pinehurst No. 2 with Abby Liebenthal
Colt plays a round on historic Pinehurst No. 2 with USGA executive Abby Liebenthal, a local who brings to life Pinehurst’s golf culture and sense of community. Abby also details the story of her non-profit, Fore The Ladies. We visit one of Pinehurst’s most popular taverns, Drum & Quill, owned by Kevin Drum. He named the bar after his father, Bob Drum, a longtime newspaperman who was known for his playful prose and deep friendship with Arnold Palmer. Colt wraps up an eventful day at The Cradle with the president of Pinehurst, Tom Pashley, and his son Max. The Cradle is one of the country’s finest short courses; its name is a tribute to where the game of golf is nurtured.
Ep.3 – U.S. Kids Golf & Paradox Farms
In the third episode of our Journey, we meet Jim Hardy, senior director of the Academy of Instruction for U.S. Kids Golf. Colt plays an alternate shot challenge with Jim and two of his students on one of their practice chipping greens. We then step away from Pinehurst’s golf courses to explore a locally famous attraction, Paradox Farms. It is the center of cheese production around Pinehurst and the home to a variety of goats, horses, adorable baby pigs and much more.
Ep.4 – Talamore’s Llamas & the Ancient Trees of Pinehurst
In this episode we get to know Talamore Golf Resort and its general manager, Matt Hausser. We learn about Talamore’s famous 14th hole, which is home to four llamas. We then sit down with chef Alex Turner at 195, a celebrated local restaurant, where Colt indulges in a smorgasbord of Southern cuisine. Next, we head downtown to Red’s Corner, where the Southern Pines community gathers to enjoy live entertainment and food trucks. The episode ends with a twilight stroll led by a ranger who takes us through the ancient trees of Pinehurst, including the oldest living Longleaf pine at 474 years old.
Ep.5 – Legacy Golf Links
We finish our “Journey to Pinehurst” at Legacy Golf Links, just a short drive located in Aberdeen. Legacy is the home course to many veterans of the United States military. Colt plays with the founder of the Veterans Golf Association, Josh Peyton, who shares the history of the VGA. It has a distinguished role honoring members of the military and acting as a means of respite and recovery for soldiers returning home. Colt then meets up with Tom Stewart, owner of Old Sport and Gallery. Tom shares with us his trove of golf memorabilia and literature as he discusses his passion for the game, and for storytelling.