Meet Kelli Beattie

Planning a golf outing doesn’t have to be a headache

Kelli Beattie is pumped — she thinks this is going to be her best year for golf.

Kelli is the sales coordinator for Southern Swing, which is like being a travel agent. She’ll set you up with tee times, accommodations and restaurant reservations in Southwest Michigan.

“It seemed like, even last spring, people who had quit golfing, picked it up again. Younger kids who had never golfed before — they were golfing,” Kelli said.

Whether it’s your first time coordinating a golf outing or you’re coming back for more, Kelli can find something for you in Southwest Michigan.

“There’re so many courses, that you have options. You can play to your budget in Calhoun County, very easily.”

Golf runs in Kelli’s family. As a kid, she went to the Marshall Country Club with her grandparents all the time. 

“My grandpa always bought me a Snickers and a Cherry Coke. That was fun, too,” she said.

She remembers what a privilege it was to be allowed to drive the golf cart.

Visit the golf course today and there’s a plaque dedicated to her grandfather where she once played in the water, searching for frogs and lost golf balls.

The memorial for David Mestemaker is located in the pond between holes 14 and 15.

Jay Gladstone, director of sales for the Calhoun County Visitors Bureau, says one reason Kelli’s good at her job is because she likes to take care of people.

“She’s really personable, she understands the golf business and she works well with the golf groups,” he said.

The two first met while working at Yarrow, where Kelli was a conference service manager and golf coordinator. But booking golfers and planning events wasn’t all she did.

“I was one of those employees, that if I had to bartend, I bartended. If I had to wait tables, I waited tables. If I had to carry bags, I carried bags; clean golf carts, snack shop, front desk. Pretty much everything,” Kelli said.

When Yarrow closed, Kelli stayed on for the new property owners but was looking for a different job. That’s when Jay called her about Southern Swing, in 2018. She was back in the golf business.

“Nose to the grindstone every day and she takes pride in her work,” Jay said.

According to him, her only downside is a terrible taste in choosing beer.

If you want to get to know Kelli, you should ask her about her animals.

“Have you ever seen a fat goat run?” Kelli asked. “It’s really funny, because their legs are so stiff.”

That would be Tommy, the goat who thinks he’s a dog. And then there’s Gill, the dog who is trying to liberate all of the socks in the house, and who is always herding the other members of Kelli’s menagerie.

Her passions are her small farm, her family, summer and cooking. She’s a CPR instructor, certified EMT and volunteer firefighter with the Johnstown Township Fire Department.

Kelli likes the CCVB environment, although she has had to adjust her mindset from a business to a nonprofit. Instead of making money for one place, she’s trying to raise the water for everyone.

“We’re bringing people to town to support local businesses,” she explained.

So have fun while helping the economy. Give Kelli a call. Ask her about her goat and her dogs and her chickens. Then find out what a great golf trip in Southern Michigan can be.

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