EAST LIVERPOOL-With spring approaching, area residents may be thinking about getting back out on the golf course.
Perhaps you would like to take your golf game to the next level this year, but you just don't have the right clubs. Lucky for you, Dave Carpenter at Ohio Valley Golf Center is nearby and ready to customize just about any club to fit you.
Carpenter started making custom golf clubs in 1983, when he cut a golf club grip out of a steak knife "just to mess around" in his workshop in the basement of his home in Calcutta. By his own account, Carpenter has always been mechanically inclined all his life, working a number of auto mechanic jobs, as a millwright and a brick layer.
"I love doing this-it's not really a job when you like what you do," he said.
Today, he owns and operates Ohio Valley Golf Center, which recently relocated from its old location in Calcutta to 2485 Park Way, next to the East Liverpool Country Club.
Carpenter opened Ohio Valley Golf Center in 1994, in Calcutta, after suffering an injury at the mill where he worked. In June 2012, he moved to his current location on Park Way. He says he likes the new location and thinks it entices more people to stop by and play golf at the Country Club.
Carpenter says he manages to get out on the golf course every so often with a handful of good friends. "It's good to get out with the guys and have a good time" said Carpenter.
Carpenter's specialty is custom-fitting golf clubs for his customers. "One size doesn't fit all," said Carpenter, explaining that the clubs one uses has a huge impact on one's swing.
Carpenter says he sees many customers who buy high-priced clubs based solely on the brand name only to find that they are unsatisfied with the product.
"I can do a better job than these companies can because I see the person one-on-one, and look at their swing," said Carpenter, noting he has nets in the back of his shop and access to the driving range where he can work with customers to get the most out of their clubs.
When he puts a custom shaft on a golf club he guarantees it will work, which is something big club companies cannot offer, according to Carpenter. "Bottom line is it works," said Carpenter, adding the vast majority of his customers experience an improvement in their swing.
"People drive 30 or 40 miles to come here-the word is out that we do good work here and don't charge an arm and a leg for it," he said.
Ohio Valley Golf Center's reputation for good service and quality products has reached golfers of every experience level from amateur golfers to Senior pro player Jim Colbert, who had Carpenter custom build him a club. "I'm not a name dropper but I've met a lot of good people here," he said.
Carpenter, 64, plans on doing what he loves until "they carry me out the door," adding that as long as golf clubs are made they will need people like Carpenter to customize them.
Ohio Valley Golf Center is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. To contact Ohio Valley Golf Center ,call 330-386-6226.