29 Apr 2022 | Women and girls |

Golf Girls become friends for life

by Dane Heverin

The beginning of an annual tradition. Left: Olivia and Mae at the 2020 Vic Open. Right: Olivia and Mae at the 2022 Vic Open.
The beginning of an annual tradition. Left: Olivia and Mae at the 2020 Vic Open. Right: Olivia and Mae at the 2022 Vic Open.

Ask any golfer and they will tell you that the best thing about the game is the friendships, and there is no doubt that this is the case for 17-year-old golfers Olivia Art and Mae Ellis.

Olivia, from Albury, and Mae, from Melbourne, met at the 2019 Golf Australia Victorian Girls Development Camp and have been the best of friends ever since.

If it was not for the distance between them, and the Covid-19 pandemic preventing travel for the better part of two years, they would be inseparable. The girls have not let those obstacles hold them back however.

They are often glued to their phones speaking, or typing, all things golf.

“Golf plays a strong part of our friendship as it’s simply hard finding someone our age that has the same interests, but this allows us to rant with one another about our games/results,” Olivia said.

Mae, who is an Australian Golf Foundation Junior Girls Golf Scholarship recipient at The Rosanna Golf Club, could not agree more.

“Golf allows us to have something in common that most teenagers don’t. We have the chance to do activities like golf that aren’t the same as everyone else,” she said.

Both girls began their respective journeys in the game at a young age. Olivia first swung a club at around six-years-old with her grandfather before participating in MyGolf at Thurgoona Country Club Resort, while Mae took up golf at age ten because her dad “wanted someone to play with”.

The passion of the game that they developed in those early days led them to the development camp in 2019 where they were extremely grateful to have met each other, and other golf-loving girls.

“The camp allows girls to build friendships and be in an environment where they're comfortable to be who they want to be,” Mae said.

Olivia was also thrilled to be “around girls that love golf as much I do” and that ensured that the girls wanted to make that occur on a much regular basis.

In order to do so, they both started taking three-hour train trips to see each other every school holidays, or to attend important events in each other’s lives.

They have already done so three times this year and one of those trips was to 13th Beach for the Vic Open earlier this year where Mae played in the Australian Golf Foundation Junior Girls Golf Scholarship Ambrose competition and Olivia carried the bag for her.

It is just one of many golf trips the girls have taken together, and there are sure to be many more to come.

April is MyGolf Girls Month where Golf Australia promotes girls participation within golf to raise awareness so others can catch the golfing bug via the MyGolf Girls program.

Find out more about MyGolf here.

Olivia caddying for Mae at the 2022 Vic Open.

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