About US

We enable kids to build the strength of character that empowers them through a lifetime of new challenges. By seamlessly integrating the game of golf with life skills curriculum, we create learning experiences that build inner strength, self-confidence, and resilience that kids carry to everything they do.

First Tee – Salina was developed and built in the summer of 2000 as a public/private partnership between the City of Salina and First Tee of Salina, a local non-profit group that promotes child development through the game of golf. Our facility, The Verla Nesbitt Joscelyn Youth Golf Academy, opened for programming and play in May, 2001.

Each year, hundreds of children take part in our golf and Life Skills programming. Operated by the Salina Parks and Recreation Department and the staff at the Salina Municipal Golf Course, classes are offered for youth of all abilities between the ages of 5-17 years old. The focus of our program, is to have our participants develop self management skills, goal setting, appreciating diversity and conflict management, all through the great game of golf.

Many other youth groups in Salina have used our facility including all area schools, St. Francis Academy, the Boy Scouts, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, the Blue Thunder, St. Johns Bapist Church, and the Girl Scouts.

Using a life skills curriculum that supports the development of values found within the game of golf, including honesty, integrity, perseverance and respect. This curriculum is then delivered seamlessly by our program director, Mike Hargrave and lead coach, Adam Gorjiyan. First Tee – Salina is having significant success in capitalizing on golf’s ability to mentor core human and character values to the young people who participate in our program. We provide lessons that not only will have lasting positive influence on their character and their lives, but also will educate and motivate them to become responsible and productive members of their communities.