When Vessel Bags announced they’d be releasing a junior bag in 2023, I had to get one for my son, Charlie.
Charlie turned six this summer and just wrapped up his third year of Junior Golf at North Hills Country Club. These first few years in the game have largely been spent goofing off with his buddies Wyatt and Max on Tuesday mornings or playing nine with his old man on open weekend afternoons, hitting shot after shot without worrying about alignment or swing technique but focusing on hitting the ball far and keeping a good attitude.
While there are many ways to promote kids’ passion for and enjoyment of golf, there are even more ways to push them away from it. Coach Paul Mindel of the Wisconsin Golf Academy has seen it all during his decades of teaching and coaching the game, and hopefully, some of what he’s learned can help…
I hope he grows the same love for the game that I have, and that he doesn’t care more about scoring than enjoyment, but I’ll be damned if he doesn’t show up each week with the coolest gear!
That’s exactly what Vessel is: The coolest, best golf gear. They are my favorite golf-related brand and ever since getting my first Player II back in 2019 are the only brand of bag I’ve used.
Everything about Vessel bags is high-end: Their durable, high-quality leather oozes class, their zippers are the first I’ve never had a single snag or rusting issue with, their carbon fiber legs are nearly indestructible and the Equilibrium 2.0 double-strap system always maintains a comfortable, balanced carry position. The rotator base ensures maximum stability while velour-lined pockets almost seem to clean valuables in-round – not that Charlie has valuables to worry about yet but he did tell me he “wishes he could have a blanket made of this pocket.”
Don’t even get me started on their magnetic snap closures – they sound this beautiful, satisfying thwap when closing to let you know your rangefinder, ball markers and other personal treasures are safe and quickly accessible. Again, not that Charlie has to worry about that yet, but I’m sure he will before we know it!
I love everything about Vessel golf bags, and everybody who sees them does, too. You wouldn’t believe all the compliments I get on mine, especially from caddies and others “in the know.” A few have even started being pulled from the bag room at North Hills this past season for friends and others who are finally catching on and seeing in them what I see: Like with electric caddies, it’s about time Vessel’s making it’s way into the Midwest market.
Nobody makes a better looking nor functioning golf bag than Vessel, and that’s why so many players on the PGA, LPGA and Champions Tours use them. Just this past July, for example, several WiscoGolfAddict.com Contributing Writers and I followed a number of players at the US Senior Open at SentryWorld, and Vessel’s products were everywhere. Probably my favorite of the ones we saw was Steve Stricker’s stand bag, which his wife, Nicki, carried en route to a second place finish at -5 in Stevens Point.
Is this the right bag for my kid?
What’s the difference between a Vessel Player, VLS or VLX model and the new Junior Stand, and is this the right golf bag for your son or daughter?
The Junior Stand is significantly smaller than the VLS or VLX, and both of those are smaller than the Player series but too big for juniors. At six years old, Charlie is just over four feet tall and the Junior Stand is a bit big for him. He loves it, though, and is proud of his awesome golf bag but it’s not yet comfortable for him even with the straps brought in as tight as they can get.
Charlie will grow into it, though, and if there’s one thing I know about Vessel bags it’s that it’ll look as good in a couple years as it does now. They are more durable than any other bag I’ve used, and it’s not even close. None of the colors on any of my Vessels have faded over time, and they could probably all be sold as like-new even after years of heavy use.
While he’s a little short now to lug the Junior Stand bag comfortably, he’s also not carrying his own clubs other than from the trunk to the practice range, and then from the practice range to the golf cart when we head out on the course (his group plays three holes/week in NHCC’s junior golf program).
The Junior Stand fits perfectly on golf carts, which I can’t say about other bags he’s used. With the first few we had to prop his bag up in the basket behind the cart seat, which is obviously not ideal.
The one big issue we’ve run into, which is only because he’s so young, is that the wedges and putter from his US Kids Golf clubs (UL48, linked here, which are for junior players 48″-51″ tall) are a tad too short to rest with the club heads above the dividers. Several of them tend to fall below the dividers and occasionally require fishing to retrieve them when needed for shots.
Again, this will not deter us from using the Vessel Junior Bag as I’m sure he’ll outgrow the 48″-51″ set in no time and I’ve confirmed at the local PGA Tour Super Store that the 52″-55″ set will rest above the 3-way divider top.
In case you’re curious about club lengths for US Kids junior clubs, you’ll see below that the UL48 putter is 1-1/2″ longer, and the wedges are 2″ longer, for the UL51’s vs. the UL48’s. The putter is still close to the divider top, but the wedges should stay up fine.
So, this is the most premium junior bag on the market today that is perfect for kids who are at least ~ 4’4″ tall. If you’re a parent of a junior player and want their setup to make a statement at your local course or club, get them a Vessel Junior Stand bag for Christmas or their birthday – it’s probably too special to give as a gift on any given Wednesday.
Light and feature-rich, the Junior Stand will age great, making it the last bag you’ll need to buy your son or daughter probably until high school. Plus, you could buy clubs only from now on when updating their gear! Trust me, they’ll be proud to carry this work of art while learning and playing the great game of golf we all love.
Interested in getting your kid a Vessel Junior Stand or picking up an elite golf bag for yourself? Check out Vessel’s website, and take a look at all the other reviews we’ve posted of their products over the past few years in the links below. Trust me, once you’ve gone Vessel you might never go back.
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