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How would you like to have

Arnold Palmer involved

in golf in Gulf Shores?

This article is taken from an interview with Robert Craft and

can be heard in its entirety on the October 20, 2016 Back 9 Report at:

In 1986, he read an article

that mentioned Arnold Palmer

was expanding his golf course

design company to include,

management and construction.

Craft needed a big name and a

turn key operation, plus there

was no bigger name in golf

than “The King.”

Robert secured an audience

with Palmer at the Bay Hill

Classic and made his pitch. At

the end of the meeting Arnie

agreed to at least visit the site.

The day that Palmer visited

Gulf Shores, preparations had

been made and the media was

alerted. Arnold and Robert’s

father, R.C. hit it off like two

old friends. Arnie immediately

took to R.C.’s hard-nosed work

ethic and the pair ended up

on the back of a sod harvester

stacking sod.

Not quite the plan Robert

had envisioned, but before he

jumped back on his plane to

fly back to Orlando, Arnold

committed to build the

proposed golf course.

Robert Craft once again met

with the Gulf Shores Town

Council and only had to ask

one question,

“How would you like to have

Arnold Palmer involved in

golf in Gulf Shores?”

Craft got his sewer line and it

helped turn Gulf Shores into

a golf mecca, which now encompasses not only the two Arnold Palmer Signature courses at Craft Farms, Cotton Creek and Cypress Bend, but also Kiva Dunes, Peninsula Golf Club, Gulf Shores Golf Club and Lost Key. Gulf Shores not only has great

golf and beautiful beaches, it

now has fantastic restaurants

and a variety of entertainment

for the entire family.

Thanks, in part, to the

foresight of the Crafts, along

with a little help from Arnold


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