Bundling up and teeing off

ALBERT LEA, Minn. – On this snowy first day of March, many are no doubt starting to feel a strong case of cabin fever,    especially this winter, but there is one local group of people who aren’t taking this winter sitting down.

Albert Lea Lake has been transformed into a nine hole golf course thanks to Mike Barsness and his crew.

It’s an annual tradition done in remembrance of a family friend who kick started the snowy golf day years ago, but has since, passed away.

“We went through and shoveled out some ‘greens’ and went through and drilled holes about 6 inches down into the ice,” Barsness said, “we use tennis balls instead of golf balls, for the obvious reason.”

It was Miah Barsness’s third year playing in the classic and she says that she has never seen this much snow.

She tells us that tromping through the drifts and piles of snow in search for her neon tennis ball is all just a part of the fun, but she says she really enjoys what this day has become all about.

“I’m excited for next year, and I’m excited to see my family.”

As for mike, he’s a firm believer that if the snow won’t melt away, then the least they can all do is try and make the best of it.

“When you’ve got long winters like this you can either pull yourself in and get cabin fever, or get out and enjoy it, “ he said.

For the most part, a warmer and less snowy Saturday is the hope with everyone for next year’s event, except for maybe getting a hold in one.

Prizes were given out to the first, second and third place winners from today’s rounds, and there was even a special award for the person who came in last.

The tradition started in northern Minnesota and slowly made its way through the twin cities as families in the group started to re-locate, but now with friends and family in north Iowa and southern Minnesota, Barsness says they’ve finally found the perfect half way point.

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