A Hole in Half

Golf is cutting the course by nine to attract more players

Half a meal rarely satisfies. So why would nine holes of golf? Well, because 18 is a sit-down dinner, and we live in a fast-food age. "You still get the golf satisfaction," says Ricardo Semeria, 47, a contractor who's about to hit the first tee at the nine-hole Modesto, Calif., municipal golf course. "When you finish nine, you think you played your game that day."

The entire industry is betting that more golfers will see it Semeria's way. To help lift the game out of its economic bunker, Golf Digest--which has compiled a list of nine-hole-friendly courses on its website--the PGA...

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