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Sam Benshoof/FOCUS Jeff Olson, golf pro at Thumper Pond, shows off his 2010 Facility Promoter of the Year award.

Thumper Pond's Jeff Olson recognized for PGA work

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It's been a big year for Thumper Pond Golf Pro Jeff Olson.

In 2010, Olson was named the president of the Dakota Chapter of the Minnesota Section of the Professional Golf Association (PGA).

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Also in 2010, the Minnesota Section of the PGA named Olson Facility Promoter of the Year.

Then, this year, Olson was named to Prairie Business Magazine's "40-under-40: Business leaders that are making it happen list."

The list included young businesspeople throughout Minnesota and the Dakotas, in areas ranging from 3M, Giant Seeds, University of North Dakota and many more.

Being named to the 40-under-40 list was a big honor, Olson said.

"It really was a great honor to win that, just seeing some of the names and reading the info about some of the other applicants," Olson said.

Olson said that he's been in golf ever since he could work. He's been at Thumper Pond as head golf professional for six years. Before that, he worked at Village Green in Moorhead for eight years.

Now 34, Olson said that golf is his passion, and it shows. In addition to being named the 2010 Facility Promoter of the Year, he also won the Dakota Chapter Teacher of the Year award in 2009.

"Teaching the game of golf has been a strong passion of mine as well," he said.

Olson pointed to new teaching technology at Thumper Pond that he's excited about.

"We use Swingview Pro and pair it together with a Cassio xf1 camera, which is able to shoot 300 frames per second," he said. "The result is it puts people's swings in slow motion, which is great for teaching."

In between promoting and teaching, Olson still finds to play the sport that he loves. In 2010, he finished in the top 40 for player points in the Minnesota Section PGA.

"I try to get out and play in pro-am and individual events whenever I can," he said.

Overall, last year was pretty memorable, Olson said.

"Last year was just an amazing year for awards and things," he said. "I don't know if it'll ever happen again, but it was pretty amazing."

With the spring thaw underway, Olson said that he is excited for upcoming events and tournaments at Thumper Pond.

Thumper Pond recently launched a new website at www.thumperpond.com that has information about the golf course, including rates and a scheduling system. Information about Willy T's Tavern and the Thumper Pond hotel is also available on the website.

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