Tee to Green Newsletter of the Burlington Country Club Autumn 2013
BURLINGTON COUNTRY CLUB 568 South Prospect Street Burlington, VT 05401-3540 Main Phone: 864 - 4683
Business Office x101 Melinda@burlingtoncountryclub.org
Message from the President
By Bob Stevens Member Services x102
I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank the management team and board of directors at Burlington for all their hard work accomplishing another excellent year. Dealing with a major kitchen renovation and software conversion, as well as a very volatile weather pattern at the beginning of the summer, they kept their focus on creating an enjoyable member experience. The one consistent theme in all of our operations meeting has been our success in delivering membership satisfaction. Certainly this fall we enjoyed exceptional weather and the season ended strong with the golf course in great shape and I hope that you were able to take advantage of our good fortune.
With the departure of Emily back to school to continue her education in speech pathology, I was afforded the opportunity to add Chad Ummel to our management team as Membership Director. Chad started in late August and has already brought some fresh social events to the membership. I am excited about the upcoming year and what lies ahead for expanded family programs and social events.
Grill Room x112
Continued on page 6
Clubhouse x103 Lisa.Wright@burlingtoncountryclub.org
Golf Shop x108 Thegolfshop@burlingtoncountryclub.org
General Manager Search Committee
Greg Peters, Chair
As a result of the Board’s decision in September to move forward with the hiring of a full-time, professional General Manager, a search committee was appointed by the Board in late September. The Committee, comprised of both Board members and individuals from the membership at large, includes Bob Stevens, Mike Rozzi, Bob Jodoin, Doug Wacek, Donna Burke and Greg Peters. Once organized, the committee began its process of identifying the most qualified, “best fit” candidate for the Club’s first General Manager. The job description submitted to the Board as part of its decision making process was refined and media resources for generating candidates identified. Job postings were activated with the New England Club Managers Association, the Club Managers Association of America and the PGA of America for both regional and national coverage, and with Seven Days newspaper here locally. Within the first several weeks, 50 resumes have already surfaced with more to come. The initial screening process has already begun. So far, the Committee is pleased with both the quantity and, more importantly, the quality of the candidates being generated. The cut-off date for submission of resumes is November 15, 2013. Current timeline targets are for interviews to take place during December and January, with a final decision by mid-late February and start date with the beginning of the season, April 1, 2014. The Committee has very much appreciated the willingness of a number of people with considerable hiring experience raising their hands to serve in the interviewing portion of the search. Others have provided referral resources that have already been of considerable value. We would very much like to make the process as inclusive of the membership as possible, and will be soliciting ideas in that regard at the Town Meeting on Saturday, November 2nd. Should you have any questions or suggestions, please don’t hesitate to let the Committee know through Greg Peters at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to hear from you!
General Manager Search, FAQs The decision to move forward with hiring a General Manager to provide professional leadership to the senior management team of the club has generated some questions. We have attempted to crystallize them in the following question and response format. As we move forward, we may update them from time to time, so that we can keep the membership informed of our progress. Does the membership get to vote on the decision to hire a General Manager? This is a personnel decision that rests with the Board. Please remember that this issue has been discussed with the membership, most recently when it voted new By-Laws that added this position within the BCC organizational structure. Why are we doing this now? We can no longer rely on a volunteer President, spending 20 to 30 hours a week, acting as the General Manager. We need a full-time, qualified individual who is accountable to the Board for providing the best possible level of service to the membership. How are we going to pay for a General Manager? The incremental cost will need to be absorbed in the Clubâ€™s operating budget. Realistically, it is unlikely that operating efficiencies will cover all of the extra cost and some portion of future dues increases will need to be allocated to this position. Will advisory committees continue their role in supporting the Board governance process? Yes, advisory committees will continue to exist with the same role of providing feedback and being a sounding board to the Board and senior management. How can members be involved in the process? Members who are interested in being involved in the selection process, please contact Greg Peters, Chair of the Search Committee.
2013 marked Professional John Paul’s 25th year at the B.C.C. He was honored by over 200 past & current members and family on September 27th. Speakers included Al Potter who was instrumental in the hiring of John many years ago. Doc Trainer and Mike Rozzi, both long time members, also spoke and helped to thank J.P. for his wonderful service to the club. Eric Rich, Steve Gonslaves & Mike Swim, all former assistant pros under J.P., also shared their admiration for what John had done for them & for the B.C.C. including some entertaining stories about J.P. and their years working together. On behalf of the club, John was given a Tiffany watch with his initials, “25 years”, and “BCC” engraved on the back. Thank you J.P., for all that you have done and continue to do to make the B.C.C. a wonderful club to be a part of.
John Paul Celebrates 25 years at the BCC
Jason Shattie, Superintendent The 2013 golf season is nearing the end and course is going into the winter in pretty good shape. We have been fortunate with the good fall weather we experienced this year. Much of the course aeration and winter preparations have been completed. Although the first half of this year was a struggle with the prolonged excessively wet conditions and severe storms, agronomically the greens and course have recovered well and are in good shape. We completed the second year of the fairway topdressing program. Annually applying sand to the upper profile of our fairways over time will improve the thatch layer resulting in better surface drainage, and a firmer more consistent playing surface. It was often times challenging this summer to provide consistent bunker conditions. Heavy rain storms and persistent precipitation resulted in numerous washouts and excessively wet bunker sand. Over time, the repeated bunker washouts create sand contamination. During washouts the bunker sand mixes with the native clay soil creating conditions of poor drainage, hard sand surfaces, and additional contamination of stones or rocks. Eventually the sand contamination deteriorates the condition of the bunkers and reduces the renovation interval. In the middle of the season we installed longer cultivating tines to our mechanical bunker rake, which raked the sand deeper, loosening the surface, and improving the â€œhard panâ€? conditions, however this was more of a short term resolution. This winter we intend to create a long term plan to address bunker improvements including drainage, sand replacement, and trial a few different lining materials. This winter we plan to review and develop a comprehensive long term plan that will identify existing drainage structures and areas in which additional surface drainage is needed. Many of these areas on the course remained wet for most of the summer and future improvements will be necessary to resolve these conditions. Some of the replacement trees we planted this spring suffered from the excessively wet conditions and did not make it through the transplant, and were removed during the summer. As a part of the tree planting warranty and at no cost to the club, Tree Works will replant those that were removed in the spring of 2014. The Burlington Country Club Annual Survey will be forth coming in the next few weeks. I encourage all to participate, your constructive comments and feedback regarding the course is very important. I hope everyone has a healthy holiday season and I look forward to seeing everybody out on the course in 2014!
Gratuities The 2013 golfing season has ended and many members have asked about the tipping policy at the B.C.C. Gratuities are completely up to the individual member and are greatly appreciated by our working staff. Cash or checks may be given directly to staff members, left with Melinda in the office or given to the Pro Shop. Checks should be written out to the B.C.C. or an individual. If you would like to do just one amount but have it go to more than one recipient, please add instructions on how you would like the gratuity distributed. You may also send in gratuities when you pay your bill and Melinda will distribute accordingly. Please make sure to clearly specify who you would like to thank and the amount of that gratuity. Any tips that the back room boys receive are pooled and shared amungst the crew. Gratuities for other individual staff members that you might like to thank go directly to them.
Message from the President continued from page 1
Without fail, we always have a lot going on at Burlington Country Club. We are consistently working to communicate effectively with all our members about the board and management operations. Please know that we are constantly trying to improve this aspect and certainly appreciate your feedback on how we can do better. At our “Town Meeting” this summer we listened to your concerns and I believe we are now addressing them. John McSoley continues to analyze the allocation of your membership fees, so you will find included in your dues statement this year a breakdown of these figures. The operations committee, along with John, have started working on a business plan and we will actively solicit input from the board and membership during our planning. We just conducted a “Special Meeting” on the board’s decision to move forward with a general manager. Over the past few years this has become an increasingly discussed topic, and indeed, the recent Governance changes have been formulated to help move in this direction. In the past, I have been skeptical of instituting a GM, however, I now believe this change to be critical in order for the Burlington Country Club to realize our potential over the next 5-10 years. We need a full time professional team running the business and working with the board on strategic planning. In order to take full advantage of this tremendous opportunity, we will work to effectively evaluate all options and communicate with our entire membership. In the meantime we will continue to work as your board and develop a strategic plan by soliciting your input through our survey and membership meetings. We currently have a sub committee “Master Planning” to incorporate the practice facility into our long term plan for the Burlington Country Club. At the same time we continue to move forward with our Storm Water study to evaluate what our exposure might be to obtain that permit. All of these considerations allow us to effectively plan for our future. All of this is moving along nicely and we are hopeful that by our annual meeting we will have more information available and be able to provide a working timeline. At the outset I thanked the management team and the board of directors for an excellent year. In closing I would like to thank the most important piece of that equation, you the membership. I thank you all for making the Burlington Country Club the special place it is. We offer a broad range of activities from golf tournaments, swim meets, social events, to just playing a quiet evening round with friends and family. On behalf of the management team I hope we have met your expectations and welcome any and all feedback from you. This is a very diverse club from a membership perspective and it constantly amazes me that we strive to allow all to enjoy the club in their own special way. Hopefully we have done our job and I look forward to seeing you around the club this winter and of course again next spring. I wish you all a happy holiday season since it is approaching rapidly. Bob Stevens President
Ray Murphy, Chair
As the golf season comes to a close, the House Committee has been working on a fresh and creative new menu for the cooler months. New offerings will include chili served in a sour dough bread bowl and sprinkled with cheddar cheese. Mussels steamed in white wine, lemon and rosemary. If you’re seeking a salad you might consider the Harvest salad topped with lemon thyme vinaigrette or the Roasted Beet salad with goat cheese and walnuts over frisee. For dinner we’re adding a USDA Choice grade NY Sirloin in both 10oz and 14oz, depending on your appetite. Everett has changed his preparation of the popular Statler chicken pairing it with a cider glaze for the season. Weekly specials will include seafood and pasta selections. If you’re craving a great burger we’re building a hand-packed 8oz beauty with beef from Boyden Farm, serving it on a sour dough roll with fries cut fresh in-house. All selections will soon be served on new china for an updated presentation. Please come by for a new dining experience. We’d like to thank Lisa, Everett and Brady for their great effort and commitment to our members and guests this year. Together they delivered a record financial performance. Please extend your appreciation on your next visit.
Congratulations to long-standing member, Al Potter, for being recognized by the Vermont Golf Association. He was awarded a plaque for his outstanding contributions to amateur golf, both in Vermont and across New England. Great job, Al! We are very proud of you. VTGA President, Pat Murray (right) presents Al Potter (left) with a plaque of recognition.
Greg Peters — Chair
Since the Committee last reported to you in the Tee to Green, the Governance Committee has worked on two major projects. The first project was to evaluate how to better integrate the Women’s Committee within the overall governance structure of the Club. After detailed discussions with the Chair of the Women’s Committee, along with input from her constituencies, the Committee recommended to the Board that future chairs of the Women’s Committee be appointed by the Board just like all other Advisory Committees of the Board. In the interim, it was agreed that Rhonda Colvard would act as the conduit for communications between the Women’s Committee and the Board. It was also agreed that the Women’s Committee would draft a Charter for Board approval in a form consistent with Board committees. That Charter has been generated and is in the process of Committee review after which it will be submitted for Board approval. The second project was to develop a Board Self-Evaluation Questionnaire to help assess how the Board perceives it is doing across a broad range of measures such as management oversight, policy making, strategic planning, fiscal management, governance and communications, among others. The questionnaire has been finalized and distributed to the Board. Results will be processed and used as part of a process to continually increase the effectiveness of the Board. As previously indicated, our goal is to make our work as transparent to the membership as possible, so please, for those of you with suggestions or comments, don’t hesitate to get in touch at: email@example.com, or come to one of our meetings. They are scheduled typically monthly, the dates and times of which are posted on the website.
James Haug — Chair
The 2013 BCC golf season will be over by the time that you see this article. After a very wet start, the season hit its stride in late July, and I think that we can all agree that for about 12 weeks, golf was as good as it gets here. Thanks go out to JP, Dave and the entire golf staff for keeping things running smoothly, especially when the weather was at its worst. This year’s tournaments were well attended and proved to be a good time for all concerned. We are fortunate to have enough time to play a number of events while still maximizing member tee access. As we look ahead to 2014, there are a few things that should mentioned. First, toward the end of the year, complaints were mounting about the condition of some greens and fairways, not due to anything that Jason and his crew failed to do, but what we as club failed to do. Fix the divots and ball marks! Take a minute to fix an extra ball mark while you are at it. Please keep an eye in each direction as you play, and let faster groups through. This is rarely a problem at the BCC, but it always needs to be top of mind. So does proper use of Foretees. Cancel if your game falls through, as soon as practical. Don’t overuse the “X” either, especially during peak times. Lastly, communication is very important to all of us. If you have a suggestion regarding Foretees, course access, tournaments, or anything else that needs to be addressed by the Golf Committee, let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if you have interest in serving on the Committee, let me know. Committee membership turns over regularly, and we need to have people in reserve to join us as needed.
On September 10th and 11th, Burlington Country Club defeated Vermont National Country Club 34.5 to 29.5, reclaiming the Waxwell Cup. In its 9th year, the 2nd year of pitting the best of the two twilight league members against each other, each team fielded 38 members, including, for the first time, teaching pros from each club. With co-captains Eric Hanley and Eric Flegenhiemer (E-squared) leading the charge, BCC stormed out to a 24-9 lead after the first day playing on our home course. E-squared not only chose replacement players and team pairings but took it so far as to figure out which teams should play on the front or back nine and what hole teams should start on. Their strategy worked as VNCC tried to regain the lead the next day on their home course but fell short. Double winners were Chris Echo, John King, Herb Noyes, Phil Jacob, Bill Zabiloski, Eric Hanley and Eric Flegenhiemer. The Waxwell Cup takes the top four golfers in each of the nine flights of Tuesdays Twilight league and gives them first right of refusal to play in the two day event based on win/loss record for the twilight season. The Waxwell cup is back in our trophy case where it belongs after spending last year at VNCC. We don't plan on ever having it leave again.
Congrats to Dave Burrell, PGA , for his recent selection by Golf Digest Magazine as one of the Best Teachers in Vermont!
Congrats to Matt Havers, PGA , for being honored as both “2013 Assistant Professional of the Year” and “2013 Junior Golf Leader” by the Vermont PGA!
Please find the internet link to our annual Member Survey in your email inbox. Your input is greatly valued, and this is your opportunity to share thoughts and comments about our club. Thanks in advance for taking the time to complete this survey. If you are unable to complete the survey on-line, printed copies are available in the office.
Upcoming EventsSantaâ€™s Brunch, Sunday, December 8th Annual Member Meeting, Thursday, December 14th Holiday Social, Wednesday, December 18th Grill Room Hours of Operation will be: Monday - Wednesday: 11:30am - 3:30pm Thursday and Friday: 11:30am - 8:30pm Saturday and Sunday: Closed Reminder to the membership that the $50 monthly minimum is in effect through the month of November. All prepaid minimum amounts will expire on November 27th. The clubhouse will be closing for the Thanksgiving Holiday on November 27th and reopening on December 2nd. The clubhouse will also be closing for the winter holidays on December 20th and reopening on January 1st.