Like most amateur golfers, Steve Burns is in awe of those professionals teeing it up at Bellerive Country Club, the site of the 2018 PGA Championship.
Burns, who was born in Harrisburg in 1949 and graduated from Harrisburg High School in 1967 is one of 4,200 volunteers this week and while Burns might not have a birds-eye view, it doesn't take away from the excitement he has that comes with the 100th playing of the major.
Burns is in the Media Center at Bellerive Country Club, assisting more than 1,000 journalist, photographers and television reporters that will watch or read in 500 million households this week.
"This is so much fun," Burns said Tuesday. "I'm not really a good golfer, but it's nice to be around people that are. This event is really overwhelming and just to give you some perspective, the media tent is about four times the size for the Senior PGA and the merchandise tent for the PGA Championship is 47,000 square feet. It's bigger than a lot of department stores."
This isn't Burns' first rodeo at a PGA event. In 2013, the Eureka, Mo., resident volunteered his time in the same capacity at the Senior PGA at Bellerive and Burns always comes way with the same result.
"I wish I could be a better golfer," Burns jokes. "This is fun to be a part of something like this -- because it's the 100th event -- This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and I think that's what made my wife and I jump at the chance to do this. It's nice also because you get to mingle with people you don't normally get to be with and you do get to see the professional golfer that comes through for an interview. So far, it's been a fun event and it's something that I hope I get to do again."
Burns recently celebrated his 50th graduation anniversary of Harrisburg High School and said despite not being back in the immediate area since 1971, a lot of memories were still fresh.
"I caught up with some friends I hadn't seen in some years and it was a fun experience and I hope to go back this year for the Homecoming."
Michael Dann covers prep and college sports for the Southern Illinois Local Media News Group. Follow him on Twitter: @spydieshooter.