Meeting Bill at Pebble Beach as a Kid

We’d like to thank Phoenix for sharing this story.

My story isn’t as exciting or cool as some of the others on this site, but I can say that I had the luck to meet BFM – twice!

I was a kid, about 10-11 years old, participating in the Golf Club at the local Boys & Girls Club (around ’98, I believe). Every year we got the opportunity to help out at the AT&T Pro-Am (held at the Monterey Peninsula Country Club in Pebble Beach, CA). Needless to say, this event was always packed with all sorts of celebrities and moneyed people – a lot of people I didn’t care too much about as a kid. But then there’s Bill Murray.

I remember hearing all of our “care-takers” going on and on about Bill Murray; I just kept thinking, “Where!? Where!?” From the large dining room where we were enjoying our lunches, I could hear him in the distance. So I decided that I was going to get this man’s autograph. I walked over to his table with a ball-cap in my hand and asked if he would sign it.

Without hesitation, he says, “Oh, sure thing, kid!” as he gives me a huge kiss on my cheek. I do believe he was asking me questions but I was so fixated on him I don’t remember what else he may have asked. He signed my hat and handed it; I walked away on clouds! I met him again the next year, same place and event. I went up to him and asked if he remembered me, to which he responded, “Of course I do!” and gave me another kiss on the cheek.

Whether or not he really remembered me, I’ll never know. All of the older women kept telling everyone else about how Bill Murray kissed me on the cheek. The only celebrity encounter that I will truly, never forget! Wish I took a picture.

Bill Murray and My Mom, While my Dad Watched

Photo by tyrian123 on Flickr.
We’d like to thank Justin for sharing today’s story.

In ’92 or ’93, I came in from Oregon to visit with my folks at Pebble Beach. We were there for a Pro-Am Golf Tournament put on by Peter Jacobsen, a PGA pro who was a friend of ours. Bill Murray was his partner for the weekend and the shenanigans were many.

But the crowning moment was when Bill hit an incredible shot about a foot from the pin on the back 9, and the gallery went wild. Bill turned, addressed the crowd, and took a big bow. He then walked up to my mother (my father was right there) put his hands around her waist, leaned in, and planted a 5 second long wet kiss… on her nose.

He then gave my dad his golf glove and walked away.

Bill at the Sardine Factory

the sardine factoryWe’d like to thank Brian for sharing today’s story.

This story happened at one of the Pebble Beach Pro-Am tournaments and must have been in the early 90′s when Bill’s playing partner was pro golfer, Scott Simpson.

I was sitting at the bar at the Sardine Factory in Monterey, near Cannery Row – a long time watering hole of Clint Eastwood’s – when some jerk comes pushing his way up to the bar and bumps right into my back. As I turn around to tell this so-and-so to take a flying leap, I immediately come face to face with a smiling Bill Murray – to my surprise, of course!

With his disarming smile and my immediate recognition of who he was, I could only think of one thing to say, “Can I buy you a drink?” He said no, as he was trying to flag the bartender to get more drinks for his sizable party in the adjoining private room. He was all smiles and people on all sides were high fiving him and shouting out his name.

As he stood next to me, I asked how he was playing in the Pro-Am, and he blurted out “I think we’re winning the whole f-n tournament” Everyone around just broke out laughing (as was Bill) and, at that, he just turned and headed back to his party.

As it turned out, I believe that year he and Scott Simpson were tied for First or Second Place after the second round. So he was actually blurting out the truth! The one thing that always stuck with me is how he was just being this big kid, having fun at everyone’s (including his own) expense – but without being hurtful or demeaning, and actually lots of fun! He appeared to be the same off-screen as on.

[Editor’s Note: Murray and Simpson have been playing together at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am since 1993. In 2011, the duo won the tournament, finishing at 35-under-par.]

Serving Bill Murray Beers at Pebble Beach

The following story originally appeared at SMITH Magazine. We would like to thank the author, RB Love, for allowing us to re-post it here.

My fandom for Bill Murray goes deep. Unabashedly deep.

So, you can imagine my surreal thrill when, working a catering gig at a house with a backyard that looks onto the tee box of Number 14 at Pebble Beach, I saw D.A. Points and Bill Murray’s party approaching. I’d just delivered a vodka cran to George Lopez on 14’s fairway, and Lopez had kissed me, told me I was beautiful and that he loved me (in that Hollywood way), then fist bumped me and blew me up. So, I was feeling a little like anything was possible when one of the patrons at the house we were catering for suggested that if I “get a cold beer out here, Murray will come up and get it.”

I put a bottle on my serving tray and headed out to the lawn. Murray hit a fine shot off the tee to much fanfare and as he headed up toward the fairway in his over-sized Elmer Fudd hat, folks from the party around me hollered: “this one’s for you.” He acknowledged us (and the beer) and turned up the rise toward the golf cart path.

I held the bottle with one hand on my tray so as not to spill it on my way down the landscaped embankment, and then I was in front of Bill Murray and a full camera crew with a boom mic guy, a key grip, two cameras, and the caddy. An entourage. And suddenly, I felt like I was in a reality TV show. Wham. Like that.

Bill Murray at Pebble Beach

From the second day of the tournament. Photo via Andre at Power Lesson.

I managed to pull my gaze up from the strange sheep-skin cover on the hovering boom mic and make eye contact with Bill Murray. I remember the pores in his face. And his eyes. Kind eyes. He shook my hand. He took the beer.

“God bless you for this,” is all he said.

Then he took a hit of the beer. Tipped it all the way back.

“Ah, Mr. Murray.” I stammered. “Mr. Murray, I just wanted to say…I just want to say you’re my all time favorite. Really. I just think you’re the best.”

Bill Murray looked at me and gave me a half a nod. But with kind eyes, you know, like, ‘don’t go gettin’ all respectful on me now, kid, we’re at a golf tournament.’

At the end of the day Murray was asked about the beer he was given on 14 and he said, “The beer was good.”

Bill Murray and D.A. Points won the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am that week.

A photo of Murray holding his beer and me standing next to him with my arm around him ran on the next day, then in Sports Illustrated and finally the San Jose Mercury over the next week.

I got a lot of mileage out of that. I gave him another beer at this year’s event when he was wearing his camouflage outfit. We’re a tradition now.


Bill Murray at Church

We’d like to thank JC for this Bill Murray Story!

My own meeting Bill Murray story is pretty boring. I was at the ATT Pebble Beach National Pro-Am Tournament for the practice round, and he came up to me and asked me if I was wearing a Chicago Bear’s cap. I confirmed that I was, which got me a thumbs up before he jumped on a golf cart and was whisked away.

Bill and I both grew up in Wilmette IL a couple of blocks away from each other. He’s a few years older than me, so I didn’t know him although I knew a couple of his younger brothers.

This story comes off of a Facebook page dedicated to people that grew up in Wilmette, and was posted by Tom K.:

“My older sister went there (St. Joe’s) for 3 years but my parents moved us both to public school when she came home with bloody knuckles courtesy of the nuns one day.

My favorite St. Joes memory was leaving Easter Mass in the last ’70s. Bill Murray was back in town on break from Sat Night Live and Monsignor Meter was at the door shaking hands as everyone leaves Mass.

He sees Bill and says “oh, Billy, so good to see you on the TV there” and Murray grabs him in a headlock, bends him down, and give him the knuckles on the top of the head saying “get outta here, ya knucklehead” like he used to do to Gilda Radner. I thought my Mom was going to have a cow…”