Local teen is on his way to the World Maccabiah Games

Andy and Colin Vineberg
From left: Andy and Colin Vineberg (Courtesy of the Vineberg family)

At just 16 years old, Colin Vineberg, a junior at St. Paul’s School for Boys, has already participated in over 100 golf tournaments and played with multiple celebrities and professional golf players. He has brought home too many trophies to count — so many that his family may need an extra home, his father, Andy Vineberg, quipped.

Last month, he participated in the World Maccabiah Games three-day golf qualifier in Palm Beach, Fla., and was selected to play at the Maccabiah Games in Israel in 2022. There, he will be competing with Jewish athletes from around the world.

Colin Vineberg, who lives in Sparks in Baltimore County and had his bar mitzvah at Temple Oheb Shalom, was only 5 years old when he started playing, said Andy Vineberg.

“Colin was playing a multitude of sports at the time — soccer, basketball, baseball,” Andy Vineberg said. “One day, as we went outside, Colin watched as one of our neighbors was hitting golf balls and asked, ‘Daddy, what is that?’ and the only thought I had as he asked that question was, ‘Oh gosh, that’s the most expensive sport in the world.’”

The thought of the expense was soon cast aside, as Andy Vineberg reached out to Anthony Romano, at the time the assistant golf professional at the Hunt Valley Country Club, to ask for golf lessons for his son. Romano, who is now the PGA head professional at Woodholme Country Club, taught Colin Vineberg how to love and play the game.

“He was like a sponge and displayed the characteristics of an athlete that’s blossoming,” Romano said.

While under Romano’s tutelage, at 5 years old, Colin Vineberg started to practice for 20 minutes at a time. As he got older, practice increased to two hours. Today, he practices anywhere from three to four hours a day. Colin Vineberg shared that he lives by the mottos of “never give up” and “preparation is the foundation for success.”

His commitment to golf notwithstanding, Colin Vineberg said that school is his main focus. He also values giving back and has participated in several charity games, including with Jimmy’s Famous Seafood golf outings, which supports many charities and is known for giving back to the Baltimore community, he said.

He also loves supporting the organization that supported him early on, First Tee of Greater Baltimore, established in 2006 to teach Baltimore’s youth “core values and life skills through the game of golf.” He volunteers with the Baltimore youth in the program, which reminds him of his early days of playing.

Over the years, Colin Vineberg has been able to play golf with a number of Baltimore sports legends, including Ed Reed, Cal Ripken Jr. and Justin Tucker.

Some of the golf tours he has participated in include the U.S. Kids Mid Atlantic PGA, Under Armour Golf Tour, Baltimore Metro Tour, BJGT Tour, IJGT Tour, Hurricane Golf Tour and YCJCA Tour. In the past year, he has played in 12 tournaments, including the Under Armour Junior Championship in July 2021. He came in second place, out of 119 young players, at that tournament and played an integral part in St. Paul’s win the MIAA A Division Championship in May.

Colin is now getting ready to compete in his next tournament, the Pure Insurance Championship at Pebble Beach in California, headlined by none other than Clint Eastwood.

As for the future, Colin Vineberg looks forward to college and majoring in physical therapy, a way, he said, to give back to athletes who may need him later. He added that he will be able to teach his patients a few golf techniques as well.

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