Updated: 08/12/2014 5:39 PM
Created: 08/12/2014 3:29 PM WHEC.com
By: Stephen Bond
The week of LPGA is hectic for players from pro-ams to practice rounds to playing in the actual tournament so any chance to break away from the course and live a normal life is welcomed.
Swing by swing, hour after hour -- the week of events at the LPGA Championship is an exhausting proposition and in most professional sports, athletes check into a hotel every night after the event. But not at the LPGA. Players are given the chance to stay with a host family.
Professional golfer Felicity Johnson said, “It's such a help for us players to be able to stay and go into somebody's home and be part of their family for a few days or a week, whatever we're here for. We get to feel part of a family and part of someone's everyday life.”
That's something most professional athletes don't get to experience on the road. Johnson has been on the tour for two years and for most of that time she's lived out of a suitcase and in a hotel room. This week she's staying in Webster with Linda and John Heaphy.
Linda Heaphy said, “We'd heard about it year after year and I was working and now I wasn't and I had no reason not to invite someone and share our house with someone.”
Linda and John say this week is life as usual. “It's no different than our own kids. They just relax and come here and if we have dinner with them it's just a normal conversation. Depending on how they do is what we ask them.”
Linda and John have housed players for the past four years, but this will be the final time they get to welcome pro golfers into their home making this year bittersweet. Heaphy said, “Golfers are sad to be leaving Rochester. They just say this is one of the greatest stops that they have so it's kind of sad but life goes on. That's the most important thing for us is just to keep in touch with the people we know on the golf course.”
John and Linda say they are already planning a trip to visit some of the players they’ve housed over the years at the LPGA Championship.