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Each month we will try to bring to you straightforward examples of popular - and not so popular - games on the course; games that will make your rounds more challenging and fun to play. In this next installment of Game of the Month, we'll tackle a game called 'Junk.'
Golfers often play side matches while they are on the course. These can range from closest to the pin to who will make the most pars from troubled locations. When put together, and tracked by a point system, these multiple side bets are called Junk, or Garbage. Sometimes there are so many junk bets taking place that a foursome needs an accountant to keep track of who's winning.
If you are ready to take another piece of paper and pencil out onto the course, we've put together an incomplete list of Junk bets. Feel free to use some or all, change their point values, or make individual games out of any of them.
Below we provide a list of sample Junk shots and corresponding points, ordered from least to most exotic:
Sandie: Make a par from the greenside trap. 1 point. If you make a par from the fairway trap it's a Super Sandie and is worth double points, and if you make a par when your ball was in both a fairway and greenside bunker, that's an Exotic Sandie and is worth 4 points.
Barkie/Woodie: Hit a tree during the hole and still make par. 1 point.
Snake: 3-putt. Lose 1 point.
Greenie: Closest shot to the pin on a par 3 and makes a par. Some players play double points if it's a birdie, and others play that the score on the hole doesn't matter.
Playing Par 3 GreeniesMurphy: Call an up and down from off the green. 2 points. If you miss a called Murphy, you lose 2 points.
Meg and Susan arrive at the par 3 fourth hole and agree to play for a Greenie. Meg hits her ball closest to the pin and makes a birdie, winning 2 points or double the bet.
Scruffy: Make a terrible drive (the other players must agree that it's really bad) and still make a par. 2 points.
Shark:Hit a shot in the water and still make par. 2 points.
Arnie: Shoot a par on a par 4 or par 5 without being on the fairway, or on the green in regulation. 1 point.
Hogan: Par a par 4 or par 5 while being on the fairway and on the green in regulation. 2 points.
Jones: Birdie a par 4 or par 5 while being on the fairway and on the green in regulation. 4 points. Playing a game of Arnies, Hogans and Jones is called Legends.
Playing LegendsFlaggie: Sink a put longer than the flagstick. 1 point. Sinking a putt longer than 50 feet is called a Super Flaggie and is worth 3 points.
Mark and David decide on the first tee to play legends (Arnies, Hogans, and Jones) for the round. Mark makes 4 pars - two Arnies, one Hogan, and one normal par (0 points), as well as a birdie, which counted as a Jones. He earns a total of 8 points. David makes 6 pars, three of which are Hogans, and earns a total of 6 points. Mark wins the match by two points.
Tiger: Long drive on a par 4 or par 5. 1 point.
Ferret: Chipping into the hole from off the green. 1 point. If you chip into the hole from the trap its called a Desert Ferret and is worth 3 points.
Mole: Mis-hit a ball lying in the bunker so that it stays in the bunker. Lose 1 point.
Platypus:Hit a ball out of bounds and still make par. 4 points.
Playing Full Junk
Tom, Jack, and Susan decide to play Junk and include all of the bets on the list above. On the first hole, a long par 4, Jack drives his ball onto the fairway, hits the green in regulation, and one-putts from twenty feet for a birdie (Jones + Flaggie = 5 points). Tom hits a terrible drive, puts his second shot into the bunker, his third into the greenside bunker, and then hits his sand shot into the hole for a par (Arnie + Desert Ferret + Exotic Sandie + Scruffy = 1 + 3 + 4 + 2 points = 10 points). Susan hits her ball into the woods, punches it out onto the fairway, misses the green, but then calls a Murphy and makes it for a bogey (Murphy = 2 points). The threesome then moves onto the second hole...