Cliffs Living: Asked & Answered | The O’Brien Family

The O’Brien family joined The Cliffs in 2015 to give Kevin and his golf-loving daughters—Gillian, Adrienne, and Peyton—access to the seven communities’ courses. As the girls’ golf skills grew, so did the family’s love for all The Cliffs offered. Kevin’s wife, Leigh, says the family started going to events at Keowee Falls, and when the perfect home there came on the market, they jumped at the chance to make it their own. 


Cliffs Living: Tell us a little bit about your and Kevin’s background.

Leigh: Kevin is a nephrologist at Oconee Prisma Hospital in Seneca. After obtaining my MBA, I decided to stay home with the girls and became a fitness instructor about ten years ago. I co-founded Clemson Fitness Company in 2017 and sold it three weeks before the pandemic hit in 2020. I still teach there on Thursday mornings.


Cliffs Living: How does your family spend your time?

Leigh: We like to be outside and do anything active. The girls and I love live music. We went to a lot of concerts in the last year and a half including Zac Bryan, Stevie Nicks, Billy Joel, and Taylor Swift, among others. I really enjoy hiking. One of our regular dog-walk routes include the Falls Creek waterfall trail.


Cliffs Living: What’s your favorite part of your home?

Leigh: Funny enough, it’s the bonus room with the pool table. The room has a dart board, concert posters, funny family Halloween photos of the past (It’s a must see—I used to go all out on family costumes every year!), and the pool table converts to a poker table. We’re a big gaming family!


Cliffs Living: Tell us about your daughters’ golf careers at The Cliffs and beyond.

Leigh: Both Gillian and Adrienne have won Junior Championships at The Cliffs at different times when they held the event at Keowee Springs. Gillian ended up being recruited to golf at Gardner-Webb University, which is in the Big South conference. Adrienne is now in her senior year at Tusculum University, which plays in the same conference that Peyton will be in when she attends Anderson University next fall for golf.  In October, Peyton accomplished her goal of winning the individual High School AAA State Championship.


Cliffs Living: Peyton, has living at The Cliffs enhanced your golf game?

Peyton: It’s been so beneficial in my golf game. I wouldn’t be near the golfer I am today without it. Every course to me has something I can benefit from. For example, my home course at Keowee Falls is very difficult so it challenges my game and my course management, but I know I benefit from it because I can see results in tournaments. Having access to seven different courses—all that can benefit a different part of my game—is something I am so lucky to say I have and I am so happy to be able to use these nice courses.


Cliffs Living: What’s the best part of living at The Cliffs?

Leigh: Besides golf, our main family activity is boating and being on the lake. Kevin’s favorite thing to do is to go golfing by boat. Loading up his clubs on our boat for the 40-minute ride back to Keowee Falls, Keowee Vineyards, or Keowee Springs is his favorite way to go golfing. It’s very convenient to make arrangements with the golf shop and have someone meet you at the docks and transport you to the course. 

Peyton: The best part for me is that everyone is so very kind and supportive of me. I don’t think I’ve ever been on the range without someone complimenting my swing, asking me questions about golf, talking about tournaments, or even giving advice; it could be a member or associate but everyone is so kind to me and I’m so appreciative. We have such a great community of members and I’m so happy to be a part of it with these wonderful people.



SIDE NOTE: Just weeks after winning her state title, the Keowee Falls team held a “Friday at the Falls” happy hour event in Peyton’s honor. Peyton’s big win was toasted with tasty mocktails.

This story was featured in Cliffs Living magazine. To see more stories like this one and learn more about The Cliffs, subscribe here.

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