DePauw University student Cole Hetzel is less than two weeks from taking his lifetime obsession with the book of Guinness World Records to the next level.
Hetzel, a 2021 high school graduate who loves sports and breaking records, has combined the two and embarked on a journey with his dad, Chris, to get his name in the book he grew up reading.
The past two years, the men have organized 30-hour-long Wiffle ball marathons in their backyard to break world records and raise money for charity. This summer, they’re going to do that but on a bigger scale and with a different sport: miniature golf.
Beginning on Sunday, July 31, the Hetzels will attempt to break the Guinness World Records mark for most mini-golf holes played by a foursome in 24 hours.
The current record is 1,440 holes, totaling 80 rounds, and was set all the way back in 2005 at an indoor course in Germany.
The attempt will take place at Putt-Putt Golf & Games Fun Center in Erlanger, Kentucky, with Cole and Chris teaming up with Bob Schoettinger and Tony Centers to complete their foursome.
They’re not just rolling into the attempt untrained either, with the Hetzel men playing weekly tournaments at the course.
“We’re doing this,” Cole told the Cincinnati Enquirer. “We’re raising money for charity. Also, we love putt-putt and we’re wanting to push ourselves to the limit to see what we can do, try to break a world record.”
The event will be a fundraiser for Matthew 25: Ministries, an organization based in Blue Ash, Ohio, that provides humanitarian aid and disaster relief internationally.
Supporters can make donations at the organization's website. Enter the code “PUTT” in the special purpose field so the Hetzels get credit for it.
Donations will also be collected at the course on the day of the event. The group plans to obtain sponsors for each hole.
The attempt has already been registered and approved with Guinness World Records, who will have officials on site to make sure the record is sanctioned if they break it. That includes having witnesses to watch every hole played, cameras set up for video evidence and an exact measurement of the course the foursome will be playing. The players must also keep score themselves.
According to Cincinnati Enquirer reporter James Weber, the group will have to average nearly 3.5 rounds per hour to break the record, walking at least 11 miles in their 80 rounds, in addition to staying up for 24 hours.
“It’s pretty serious, but it’s also a lot of fun,” Hetzel said. “We’re having a good time here trying to break a world record, but it’s all about raising money for a good cause.”