Annie Vanzant initially thought the idea of working in a golf shop would be boring. Courtesy PSGA
Oakmont Country Club is blessed with one of the iconic championship logos in all of golf: a nameless squirrel holding a golf ball while sitting atop a Scottish tam o’ shanter bonnet.
An ever-evolving graphic of the nut-harvesting rodent that used to roam Oakmont in bunches – there are far fewer of them now that the course has cut down some 15,000-plus trees over the past 40 years – is credited with helping sell more merchandise than any other USGA major venue over the years. Many club pros consider the golf shop to be the gold standard of merchandising in the industry.
The squirrel gets the attention, but an operation can’t reach these heights with only a lovable logo to offer; Oakmont’s real secret weapon in this arena is Annie Vanzant, the club’s director of merchandising for the past 24 years.
In Vanzant, Oakmont found a true unico...
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