Playing 500 Golf Courses in 365 Days: An Epic Journey with Patrick Koenig

Written by Reynolds Lake Oconee | Patrick Koenig

Playing 500 golf courses in 365 days is no small feat, but that's what Patrick Koenig has set out to do on his RGV Tour 2.0.

In 2018, Patrick embarked on a golf journey that changed his life. He purchased an RV and turned it into an RGV (recreational golf vehicle) and toured the country, playing golf with 793 people on 405 golf courses across 48 states and raising over $20k for The First Tee (you can learn more about this trip here).

From that journey comes The RGV Tour 2.0. This time, Patrick is planning an attempt to set a world record for 500 golf courses in a single year. Reynolds Lake Oconee, with our six golf courses on the property, is a natural destination for this epic feat.

We chatted with Patrick about managing the logistics of the trip, how he organizes his schedule, and the charities he's raising money for on this tour. He also chats about his stop at Reynolds and what sets the destination apart from others he’s experienced on his golf odyssey.

Hi Patrick! We’re thrilled to have you back at Reynolds (Patrick, an accomplished golf photographer, first visited Reynolds in 2022 as part of the Golfography group), and we’re so excited to be included as one of your stops on The RGV Tour 2.0. Can you tell us a bit more about the RGV Tour?

Sure! In 2018 I embarked on the inaugural RGV Tour, and it was a golf journey that changed my life. I resigned from my sales position, purchased a recreational vehicle (RV), and turned it into a recreational golf vehicle (RGV). With the initial goal of playing golf in every state, I toured the country, playing golf with 793 people on 405 golf courses across 48 states and raising over $20k for The First Tee. I played a lot of golf and saw a lot of places, but the journey taught me about America and it taught me a lot about myself. That year will always hold a special place in my golf heart.

For The RGV Tour 2.0, there are two goals - play 500 golf courses in a single year to set a world record, and once again raise money for the First Tee of Greater Seattle as well as various other charities around the nation.

How do you manage the logistics of playing 500 courses in 365 days? Do you have a team helping with the planning and organization?

I wish I had a team that would help me, but it is just me. So probably the number one way that I organize this is through my website. On my website, there is a request form that people can fill out to let me know where they want me to play. Once I receive these requests, I organize them by state. As I get closer to the dates, I reach out to the people who have invited me to play and we schedule the tee times. In addition to these scheduled rounds, I also love to try and explore new courses. If someone recommends a course, I’ll add it to my list and try to fit it in. Overall, there's a lot of exploration involved in finding and playing new courses. I've only got about 330 tee times left to book, so we're 30% of the way there!

Any memorable stories from The RGV Tour 2.0 so far?

Playing at TPC Sawgrass was like a dream come true. I had the pleasure of playing with Len Mattice, a notable golfer who almost won The Masters in 2003, as well as my friends and sponsors from Golf Game Book who came from Finland to join us. During the game, one of my sponsors made a remarkable birdie shot from the back of the green on the 18th hole. Witnessing the joy and excitement on his face was a moment that will forever be etched in my memory. He described the experience as pure magic, and I felt the same way. That experience alone made my month unforgettable.

Can you tell us more about The First Tee and the other charities you are raising money for on this tour?

This was my number one passion on my first tour. Initially, I joined the tour just to visit different golf courses, which was more of a selfish goal. But then, I decided to support the First Tee, a charity that raises money to provide golfing opportunities for underprivileged children. As I got more involved with this charity, my passion for raising money and the mission of the organization grew stronger. Seeing the coaches' dedication and hard work toward the cause made me realize that there was something much bigger than my personal goals. The original goal was to raise $10,000 for the First Tee of Greater Seattle, but we surpassed it and raised over $20,000. Currently, for the new tour, we are focusing on raising money for local chapters. I believe this is where the funds are most effectively used for the children, towards equipment, and paying the salaries of those involved in their development. This was my first experience raising money for charities, and I feel that it's something I will consistently do for the rest of my life. Learn more about First Tee here.

In your opinion, what sets Reynolds Lake Oconee apart from other golf destinations in the country, and why did you choose it as one of the stops on your tour?

Well, it's the quality of the golf courses. That’s first and foremost the consideration for a guy like me. I look for great golf. I look for memorable experiences. I look for beautiful vistas where I can point my camera and capture a compelling image that will inspire other people to come. Reynolds checks all of these boxes. And then once you go, you realize, there's a lot of golf there too, so you don't have to go far to go find something new and magical. There's a course I haven’t played yet just down the street. Additionally, the accommodations play a significant role in my decision-making process. Although I'm currently staying in my RGV, my previous visits to Lake Oconee have been luxurious, yet down-to-earth. It's one of those places that make you feel welcome as soon as you step on the property, and that’s why it's one of the best golf destinations and private communities in the country.

Which of the six courses at Reynolds Lake Oconee are you most looking forward to playing, and why?

I find the prospect of playing new golf courses the most exciting. That's precisely why I'm undertaking the RGV Tour 2.0, which embodies the spirit of exploration and discovery. Among the courses on my list, the Creek Club stands out as I haven't played it yet. Although I've driven by it and observed some of the holes, they look marvelously interesting from the road. Great Waters has also always been a favorite of mine, and I'm looking forward to revisiting it on this tour.

What advice would you give to other golf enthusiasts who are considering a visit to Reynolds Lake Oconee?

My best advice to anyone is to book your trip and go. Additionally, I always encourage people to play all of the courses available to them. Each course is unique, and that's one of the great things about golf, as what makes a golf course special for one golfer may be entirely different for another. This is especially true at Reynolds, as the variety of options makes it a complete golf destination.

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