When the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) determined it would hold a tournament in the Bahamas at the start of 2013, Jan and Walton Carter, of Valdosta, Ga., were among the first to jump on board. The grandparents of LPGA golfer Dori Carter quickly decided they would celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary by retuning to Nassau, where they spent they honeymoon in 1953.
“When we found out that she was coming to Nassau, we just had to come,” said Jan Carter, a fit-looking 78-year-old, who played tennis most of her life. “Watching my granddaughter play out here makes you fell real old. But, we’re real proud of her and all the work she has done. We’ve gone some fun places, but coming here to Nassau is a real treat.”
The Carters are enjoying following their granddaughter on the golf course, and she is putting on a show. The 26-year-old former All-American at the University of Mississippi was 3 under par for her first round and stood only a couple strokes off the lead after her second round Saturday at the rain-shortened Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic being held at the Ocean Club Golf Course that was designed by Tom Weiskopf and opened in 2000.
“They have been following me my entire life,” said Carter. “They are excited, and I am trying to play my best for them. I am enjoying spending time with them because I don’t get to go home too much. I think we are all going to the beach this afternoon. And they just love the casino here at Atlantis.”
The Ocean Club and the luxurious homes that surround it are just some of the things that are new since the Carters last visited Nassau in 1953. And some of the things that were here 60 years ago are long gone; like the Fort Montagu Hotel on the mainland, where they stayed on their honeymoon. It was torn down in the mid 1990s.
“It was just baron over here on Paradise Island,” said Walton Carter, an 86-year-old retired insurance agent who married Jan on June 12, 1953. “We had to ride across from the mainland on a boat with an outboard motor and there was just one little thatched hut over here where you could buy a coke.
“We rode bicycles everywhere we went. But Jan drank the water at the beach and it didn’t agree with her, so the honeymoon got over in a hurry,” he said with a laugh.
Now the Carters are making new memories and hoping that their granddaughter earns her best finish of the year, or maybe even her first win as a professional