In our latest installment of “Military Small Business,” meet Despina and Cody Harris behind Submarine Golf! When these golf-loving enthusiasts couldn’t find any submarine-themed golf accessories, they decided to develop the product themselves.
Do you have a golf-loving submariner in your life? Learn more below!
Name: Despina Metakos Harris
Hometown: Cranston, RI
Branch of Military: NAVY – Hooyah Submarines!
Current Duty Station: RETIRED out of Groton – after 22 years of service!
Q: Tell us about your business.
Submarine Golf is a small, veteran-owned and woman co-owned, shop that develops and sells Submarine themed golf headcovers with built in submarine dive alarm sound effects.
My husband, Cody Harris, honorably served for 22 years in the Submarine Service of the United States Navy and retired in 2013 as a Chief Petty Officer. I am a two-time cancer survivor and the former Ombudsman of the USS MISSOURI (SSN780), the last submarine my husband served on before he retired.
We love to play golf and were looking for a submarine-themed golf head cover and couldn’t find one, so we decided to develop the product ourselves and here we are!
Our mission is not only to provide our customers with fun, well made, submarine themed golf head covers with sound effects, but to support the community we know and love, by donating a portion of our profits to local and national organizations. We support Operation Stand Down, the Submarine Force Museum and Library Association, Gold and Silver Auctions all over the country and the Dolphin Scholarship Fund to name a few.
Q: What made you choose this type of business?
Cody took up golf after he retired and loved it! We looked around for a submarine shaped headcover for his driver and couldn’t find one and the EUREKA moment struck us and here we are.
We love golf and we love submarines and thought the two would go well together! We did some market research and found that people liked the idea and decided to invest our time and money.
Q: How do you manage the work/life balance as a military spouse?
When Cody was on active duty it was actually easier! He was out to sea most of the time and I had my routine and centered it around my work life to stay busy until he came home. When he came home the adjustment and balance were necessary because he disrupted the routine I had created for myself. The real adjustment and work/life balance came when he retired and was home all the time. It was wonderful and irritating all at the same time…. can anyone else relate?
Q: Any advice for fellow military spouses who want to start their own business?
Learn everything you need to know about starting a business before you start. Seek the council of others that walked that road before you and most importantly find funding sources before you start. Being wrong is very expensive! DO NOT get discouraged if you don’t go viral in the first 30 days of your business venture. It takes a lot of dedication and hard work to be successful- stay the course! NEVER GIVE UP! No matter how many times NEXCOM says NO…. Keep knocking on that door! You never know when they’ll change their mind.
Q: Favorite thing(s) to do in your current duty station?
Groton is terrific! You’re a 15-minute ride from the best beaches in the country, the best seafood you’ll ever taste and two world-class casinos. Not to mention in two hours you can be in New York City or Boston and in three hours you can be skiing in New Hampshire. All in the same weekend if you really wanted to be adventurous!
Q: Where can we support and learn more about your business?
We offer a military discount of 30% off our headcovers- use promo code NAVYSUB at checkout.
To learn more about other military small businesses, click here.
Do you or someone you know operate a military spouse or veteran-owned small business? We’d love to feature it! Please email us at TheSubmergedLife@gmail.com.