1999 Inductee, Player Category
Born: November 6, 1952
Birthplace: Greensboro, NC
Residence: Richmond, VA
Manager, Putt-Putt Golf & Games, Richmond, Virginia (1978 - present)
Manager, Putt-Putt Golf Courses, High Point, North Carolina (1974-1978)
Manager, Putt-Putt Golf Courses, Greensboro, North Carolina (1972-1974)
Assistant Manager, Putt-Putt Golf Courses, Greensboro, North Carolina (1969-1971)
Turned Professional: 1974
Lifetime PPA Stroke Average: 28.08
PPA Career Money Winnings: $15,280
Major PPA Tour Victories: 1992 Virginia State Championship.
PPA Tour Victories: 1977 Winston-Salem Open, 1977 Gastonia Open, 1978 Burlington Open, 1978 High Point Open, 1980 Richmond Open, 1987 Alexandria Open, 1989 Newport News Open.
Other PPA Tour Honors: 1999 PPA Hall of Fame Inductee, 1990 Architect of Clayton Cup Matches, 1986 PPA Hall of Fame Co-founder, 1985 Elton Davis Memorial Tournament.
When Gary Hinshaw was a boy, he would take trips with his family to his grandmother's house in Siler City, not far from his Greensboro home. He remembers the small 18-hole Putt-Putt Golf Course that stood along NC 421. "I used to tell my father that one day I would manage a Putt-Putt Golf Course," he says.
He more than fulfilled his boyhood ambition, not only managing Putt-Putt Golf Course facilities in Greensboro, North Carolina; High Point, North Carolina, and Richmond, Virginia, but earning acclaims as Putt-Putt Golf Courses Manager of the Year in 1972, 1979, and 1991. One of the few executives in the industry to earn such distinction.
Those remarkable and unparalleled accomplishments have been the crown jewel in a distinguished career that saw Gary Hinshaw contribute unselfishly to perpetuate Putt-Putt Golf Courses of America, the Professional Putters Association, the Amateur Putters Association, and the Juniors Putters Association of America. He has served since 1984, and continues to serve, on the Putt-Putt Golf Courses National Board of Advisors. He was founder of the PPA State Tours in North Carolina and Virginia. He conceived the Clayton Cup Matches in honor of Putt-Putt founder, Don Clayton. He served during National, Regional, State and Junior Championships throughout the 1980s and 1990s as host professional at the Richmond, Virginia installation, a leading market in the industry. He was a founding member of the PPA Hall of Fame and author of its original bylaws.
"Everything I've accomplished in my career, I owe to Jesus Christ," says Hinshaw, whose beginnings in the game began in 1969 when he won the Saturday morning Kiddies Day Tournament at the Putt-Putt Golf Course on Battleground Road in Greensboro. "After that, I give credit to my parents, my wife, Todd Lecka and Don Clayton. But it was Todd Lecka who gave me the opportunity. He gave me my first Putt-Putt in 1972 at age 19 and then entrusted me with Richmond in 1978. He has been like a father to me." "And Gary Hinshaw," Lecka says, "is like a son to me."
"He is the embodiment of what a Putt-Putt Golf Course manager should be," Lecka says. "The epitome of all we stand for in wholesome family entertainment. All facets of the business will forever be in his debt."
Distinguished manager, respected player, devoted husband, father, son, leader, and Christian.
"It was never my plan to some day be inducted into the PPA Hall of Fame," says Gary Hinshaw, inducted as the 28th member to the shrine on September 17, 1999, in ceremonies at Orange Lake Resort & Country Club in Orlando, Florida. "I'm honored to be a part of it, humbled by those players who have gone before me and more humbled knowing there are players in the game who are more deserving. But honestly, everything I have done in the game I did for selfish reasons. I loved the game."