The Golf Odyssey began in 1995 with a small group of men from Glendale Presbyterian Church. The initial group was led by John Lee, for whom today's Champions trophy is named, and Rico Sojico, for whom today's Skins trophy is named. Included in that first group was Rob Dixon. In 1996, Rob invited his college roommate Todd Riddiough to join, thus laying the groundwork for the wonderful GOs to come.
In 1999, after a brief hiatus, the Golf Odyssey was reborn with a new lineup of Jeff Moreno, James Ha, Todd Riddiough and Rob Dixon. We honored the GO origin story by returning to the iconic San Luis Rey Downs golf facility, home to fry guys, a robust collection of vintage television sets, condos 1 and 2, a non-functional jacuzzi, Greg Milligan, and the toughest tee shot in international golf, at #10.
In 2001, we added Ed Riddiough and Brannan Gary, and thus finalizing our full complement of players. Through numerous life transitions, including graduations, weddings, births, and more, we continued to meet and play each December at SLRD. Over time, we began to pioneer summer events, including the Mid-Year GO (MYGO) and the Family GO (FAMGO). One day, the plan is to play a GO every month or so.
After years of financial hardship, SLRD went defunct in 2011. In hindsight, we wish James had bought it. For GO2012, we moved to Palm Desert and the Gary Timeshare Season (GTS) began. We also moved the GO away from the Christmas season to after the first of the year, ideally on Pro Bowl weekend. During the GTS, we branched out with several new additions: footgolf became a common experience, alongside soccer tennis and Saturday night racquetball in Ontario. Also, we finally found a jacuzzi that worked. And how could we forget dinners at the Jackalope, in the company of the Riddiough parents, and, well, Jimmy's clown friends.
After a 20th anniversary GO in Las Vegas marked by pinkeye, meat fests, Ka, and some sweet new kicks, we relocated to the Central Coast in 2020. We're back to our college stomping grounds, enjoying all that the Central Coast has to offer and looking ahead to our 25th anniversary, when we'll take the show on the road...to Paris. We cherish GO, and may it never die!